Right about 4 p.m. most afternoons at Union Market, the ice cream procession starts. Shoppers casually stroll into Salt & Sundry toting tempting cones and thick milkshakes filled with flavors from our market neighbors Trickling Springs Creamery. Resistance is futile.
I'm partial to mint chocolate chip. And I'm crazy about the gorgeous new brass jewelry that just arrived at S&S from Portland-based designers Betsy & Iya. Come see me soon and check out both!
makes 1 drink
1 oz lemon juice
3/4 oz grenadine*
1/4 oz simple syrup
1 bar spoon sherry vinegar
Shake with ice, strain over fresh ice and finish with sparkling water and a lemon wedge. Enjoy!
* For the grenadine, I love DC-made True Syrup's version or the slightly earthier Jack Rudy Cocktail Co. version, both available at Salt & Sundry.
Faribault Woolen Mill, the maker of this beautiful blanket, celebrates its 150th birthday this year. A wonderful American goods revival story, Faribault is one of the lines I love stocking at Salt & Sundry. The Minnesota-born mill was founded in 1856, at the close of the Civil War, and provided military blankets for two World Wars. We have a few of the wool flag blankets at the shops, along with several other styles.
From favorite blankets to favorite cocktails ... Toast the July 4th holiday with one of my favorite summer sips:
makes 1 drink
1.5 oz white rum
1.5 oz Dolin Blanc
1 barspoon Grand Marnier
1 barspoon Jack Rudy Grenadine
Stir well over ice and strain into a chilled coupe. Garnish with a Luxardo maraschino cherry and orange twist. Enjoy!
This simple stew, inspired by cioppino, is one of my favorite summer seafood recipes. It's a go-to on family beach trips, when I feel the need to pack in as much seafood as possible, as if I'll never have access to it again.
To the contrary, I eat seafood wherever I am, but there's something about the salty humid air of the coast that I swear makes it taste even better. And when you're city-bound, a bowl nearly conjures that same seaside vibe.
Many recipes for fish stew call for a long ingredient list of pricey seafood and homemade fish stock. But you can coax a lot of flavor out of a few ingredients in little time. And what seafood you toss in is really up to you. Crab legs, scallops and mussels are all great additions not included here. (We tossed in mussels last time, pictured above!)
Serve as a light supper with a salad and French bread, or as a first course for a dinner party.
Simple Seafood Stew
1/4 cup olive oil
2 large onions, sliced
6 garlic cloves, smashed
1 serrano pepper, minced
5 cups tomatoes, chopped (You can also use canned diced tomatoes if needed.)
2 cups dry white wine
1 cup water
2 bay leaves
1 pound shrimp
3/4 pound squid, tentacles and bodies cleaned and sliced into 1/2-inch pieces
1 1/2 pounds halibut or other firm white fish, cut into 1-inch chunks
fresh basil and parsley
salt and pepper to taste
Heat olive oil in a large heavy bottom pot over medium high heat. Add onion and cook 3-4 minutes. Add garlic and serrano pepper and cook 5 minutes. Add the wine and cook for about 3 minutes.
Add tomato, water and bay leaves, and simmer over low heat for 15 minutes. Season with salt to taste.
Turn heat up to medium high, add the squid and fish, stir and cook 3-4 minutes. Set the clams on top, cover and cook for about 5 minutes. Add the shrimp and cook another 3-5 minutes until the clams have opened and the shrimp are cooked through.
Adjust seasoning by adding salt and pepper to your liking. You can thin the stew with a little water if it's thicker than you want. Ladle into bowls, add torn basil leaves, parsley, lemon wedges and serve.
DC is finally showing off her full spring glory, and the farmers markets are gearing up with appearances from the season's superstar vegetables and fruits.
This video from an appearance on News Channel 8's Let's Talk Live is a few years old, but I refer to it as "That time I chewed a pickled ramp through an entire live TV segment." So I figured it's worth recycling.
Give it a watch and read on for tasty ideas for how to best use spring's produce:
The freshly picked tender spears of spring are a far cry from the woody stalks you find in the off season. Look for them to make their first appearance in the next few weeks at the markets.
Make: Asparagus Benedict on quinoa nettle cakes; Penne with asparagus, sage and peas; or simply grill it
Stinky, musky goodness is how I think of these wild onions.
Make: Ramp pickles, Buttermilk ramp biscuits
MICRO MUSTARD GREENS
Endless Summer Harvest specializes in these adorable baby greens with a spicy kick.
Make: Pile them on a BLT in place of lettuce, or toss into a salad for extra flavor.
Don't touch them raw or you'll understand where the name comes from, but dunk them in boiling water and they turn into perfectly edible, nutritious greens.
Make: Spring lasagna with asparagus, peas and stinging nettles, Nettle soup
Every spring I look forward to making tangy jam and a simple rhubarb crostata.
Make: Rhubarb quick jam, Strawberry and rhubarb crostata
One of spring's more elusive finds, these mushrooms with a super short season demand high prices but can be worth the splurge.
Make: Quiche with morels and scallions
The cold shows no sign of surrender here in DC, and my kitchen pipes just burst. While we wait for water to return and snow to melt, I'm taking a cue from the folks celebrating Mardi Gras today and mixing an updated version of a New Orleans classic — the Hurricane.
Drawing from Salt & Sundry's bar section, I've subbed P&H Soda Co.'s delicious hibiscus syrup for the traditional passion fruit. Match that with Jack Rudy's grenadine and fresh citrus, and you have a little tropical escape in a glass.
For another accessible tropical escape, head to the wonderfully humid US Botanic Garden jungle (pictured below). It may be the best place to ride out the cold snap in DC. If only they had a tiki bar ...
Snow Day Hurricane
2 oz dark rum
1/2 oz fresh orange juice
3/4 oz fresh lime juice
1/2 oz P&H Soda Co. Hibiscus Syrup
1/4 oz Jack Rudy Cocktail Co. Grenadine
Shake and strain into a glass with ice. Garnish with fruit and a paper umbrella.
Adapted from Imbibe.
You've probably heard me say it before, but you can never go wrong gifting really good food. With that in mind, we've created three Valentine's gift boxes — the LOVE, LOCAL and LUSH — filled with fabulous cocktail/food items, available for preorder and pick up at Salt & Sundry.
Pictured above, the LOCAL box rounds up some of my favorite DC-made goodies, including Langdon Wood Barrel-Aged Maple Syrup, Gordy's Cherry Pepper Spread, Mango 'Chups and Capital Honey Co.'s raw urban honey.
For details on the LOVE and LUSH box, and how to place an order, head to Salt & Sundry's Instagram.