Caramel Apple Tart

caramel apple tartcaramel apple tartcaramel apple tartcaramel apple tart I’m on the hunt for new twists on Thanksgiving traditions. There’s a strange place between when a family has little ones to instruct in traditions, and when the little ones grow up but haven’t quite begun new traditions. That place is where experiments can happen, and that’s where my family is right now: Trying new recipes, new twists, not changing too much of course because my sentimental heart would splinter into a million pieces if it wasn’t held together by familiarity, but a little change is fun, exciting, sometimes a flop, but always interesting. We’re all old enough to have our traditions firmly planted, loved, and ready to spring back out at a moment’s notice of sentimentality, but we’re also ready to explore new territories and make new stories to say “remember when we tried…” regardless of how that sentence is finished: “oh yeah! Let’s do it again,” or, “oh yeahhh, never, never again.”

I tried this recipe for an apple tart with homemade caramel sauce as an alternative to apple pie. It was lighter than a usual pie, but because the apples were open-faced while they were being cooked instead of under a comforter of dough, the apples dried out a bit. Drizzle it with caramel though and it was pretty delicious. If you’re a fan of apple pie but kinda peel off the crust as you eat, the tart is perfection: thinner crust, more apples, and coated with caramel to finish. There was plenty of caramel left over too for coffee, or rolls, or…

I’m so excited to show you my idea for a Thanksgiving centerpiece, it’s pretty much free and absolutely gorgeous, just wait!

-<3 A. 

October Highlights


  1. Spooky 2. Sophisticated 3. Celebratory 4. Natural 5. Scrumptious 6. Black and White

October keeps bleeding into November which is something of a metaphor for what this year has been: one thing just melding into the next and being quite surprised the old thing has passed and the new thing has arrived. October was spooky yet sophisticated with Halloween and at last breaking out the scarves, boots, and Fall prints. It was also scrumptious and celebratory: celebrating the return of everything pumpkin and my one year anniversary in this space! I can’t even believe it!

Some DIY’s I share simply because I think the idea was a good one, and even though my execution may have fallen a little short, someone else might be able to take the idea and run with it so I share anyway. But this month’s Raven Wreath and Black and White Pumpkins I can say I couldn’t wait to share because I was so very proud of them. Fall is my season: the best things happen, the best ideas, and I’m so excited for November. This month has already been incredibly busy in its four days but also incredibly exciting and I can’t wait to see what happens in the next twenty-six. I have some more things I can’t wait to share but I’m waiting to make sure they’re actually happening before I spill the bloggin’ beans!

image via vintage Vogue

– <3 A. 

Cooking the Perfect Day

With everything and everyone this time of year telling you what to wear, what to buy, what to cook, what to gift, and what the perfect holiday looks like, it seems like more people are trying to perhaps get back to what the holidays really mean and do things a little simpler this year. So, this Thanksgiving, instead of posting about what your Thanksgiving spread should taste like, what your centerpiece should look like, and what your outfit should be, I thought I would share How to Cook the Perfect Day. 

When I graduated from college, this girl:

Redhead curls

Gave me this book:

How to Cook the Perfect Day by Nikki McClureHow to Cook the Perfect Day, written and illustrated by Nikki McClure, publ. by Sasquatch Books, 2010

It’s not exactly meant for Thanksgiving, but it is the perfect combination of adorable, paper-cut illustrations done by the fantastically talented Nikki McClure, earthy recipes, and a little reminder that the experience of cooking and sharing with loved ones is more than half the fun of the day.

How to Cook the Perfect Day illustrations

How to Cook the Perfect Day illustrations

The little book is such fun. It’s almost child-like in its simplicity, something I think most people are actually searching for come each holiday season. So, if you’re looking for a simple day, here’s a few essential tips if you want to learn How to Cook the Perfect (Thanksgiving!) Day:

1.) If you’re baking some rolls,
 make sure to let them “cool if you
 can stand the wait.”

How to Cook the Perfect Day illustrations

 2.) If you’re making a hot beverage,
 some apple cider, or some Morrocan 
 Mint Tea perhaps, “sip for hours 
 enjoying at least three glassfuls.”

How to Cook the Perfect Day illustrations

3.) Dessert is a must, and if you’re 
  making the traditional pies, don’t
  forget to let them cool “on the porch
  but not on the sill of a second story window.” 

How to Cook the Perfect Day illustrations

4.) And my personal favorite could apply
 to almost anything you’re making,
 but most definitely applies to the
 “Midnight Morning Biscuit.”
 If you make them, then you must 
 “eat at least one biscuit immediately.”

How to Cook the Perfect Day illustrations

Tomorrow I’m promising to share tips for making some super-easy mini-pies. I’m pretty sure they could help you cook the perfect day and, honestly, they are the simplest, yet most delicious dessert. You will definitely have to eat one immediately.

– <3 A.