GrandOpening + OurGoods = Trade School

tradeschool Collaborations are a thing of beauty.  This month, Grand Opening and Our Goods have teamed up and formed Trade School, a month long experiment that offers classes in a variety of subjects including Business School for Artists, How to Make Butter, Intro to Participatory Learning & Action, Grantwriting and a number of other fascinating topics.  Trade School omits the dollar system and operates solely on barter. Teachers are compensated in work space and students pay for class by bringing goods to trade.  I signed up for "PLAY: Improv for Ideation," a class that teaches a series of interactive ideation and process exercises aimed at informing and enhancing the creative practice.  In exchange, the teachers, the duo behind MakerHappener, have asked for any of the following:

One-time access to a laser cutter 1 hour of Wordpress assistance A jar of organic peanut butter or raw local honey Stumptown coffee beans A winter coat for a 70 pound black lab Art Plants Cool maps or art books

I love the idea of people coming together across a variety of disciplines to share resources and teach one another.  Who wants to join me?

Discovered: Mast Brothers Chocolate

1 Some of you may remember this post I did a while back with the amazing photos that The Selby took as part of the advertising campaign for Cole, Rodd and Haan. Well folks, he has gone and done it again.  This time, The Selby takes us on a beautiful tour of one of my all time favorite chocolate houses, Mast Brothers Chocolate.  Rick and Michael Mast are the handsome duo behind these delicious chocolates that are handmade in Brooklyn .   These boys are true artisans and are one of the few "bean-to-bar" chocolatiers, which means they own the entire process of making their chocolate from sourcing the cocoa beans from Venezuela, Ecuador and Madagascar to roasting, grinding, molding and eventually packaging it all up.  The Selby does a wonderful job of illustrating the whole process from start to finish, so please check out the whole series here.

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Not only is this some seriously delicious chocolate (my favorite is the Dark Chocolate with Almonds and Sea Salt), but every bar comes beautifully packaged in Italian wrapping paper; it's like unwrapping a gift each time.

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You can find their chocolate at any of these amazing little shops:

A Little of What You Fancy 19 Newtown Lane, East Hampton, NY 11937 Bedford Cheese Shop 229 Bedford Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11211 Bierkraft 191 Fifth Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11217 Branford Green Grocer 1036 Main Street, Branford, CT 06405 Brooklyn Larder 228 Flatbush Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11217 Dean & Deluca 560 Broadway, Manhattan, NY 10012 France 44 4351 France Avenue South, Minneapolis, MN 55410 Grab 438 7th Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11215 Marlow & Sons 81 Broadway, Brooklyn, NY 11211 Miette Confiserie 449 Octavia Boulevard, San Francisco, CA 94102 Murray's Cheese 254 Bleecker Street, Manhattan, NY 10014 Park Slope Food Coop 782 Union Street, Brooklyn, NY 11215 Provisions 150 Beekman Street, Manhattan, NY 10038 Rubiner's Cheesemongers    264 Main Road, Great Barrington, MA 01230 Spuyten Duyvil Grocery 218 Bedford Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11211 Stinky Bklyn 261 Smith Street, Brooklyn, NY 11231 Stone Barns 630 Bedford Road, Pocantico Hills, NY 10591 Urban Rustic 236 North 12th Street, Brooklyn, NY 11211

In My House, We Call This a Class Act

Conan-O-Brien-the-tonight-show-with-conan-obrien-6115061-434-468-1 Conan O'Brien released the following statement with regards to whether or not he would accept NBC’s proposal to move his show to 12:05 following Jay Leno.

People of Earth:

In the last few days, I've been getting a lot of sympathy calls, and I want to start by making it clear that no one should waste a second feeling sorry for me. For 17 years, I've been getting paid to do what I love most and, in a world with real problems, I've been absurdly lucky. That said, I've been suddenly put in a very public predicament and my bosses are demanding an immediate decision.

Six years ago, I signed a contract with NBC to take over The Tonight Show in June of 2009. Like a lot of us, I grew up watching Johnny Carson every night and the chance to one day sit in that chair has meant everything to me. I worked long and hard to get that opportunity, passed up far more lucrative offers, and since 2004 I have spent literally hundreds of hours thinking of ways to extend the franchise long into the future. It was my mistaken belief that, like my predecessor, I would have the benefit of some time and, just as important, some degree of ratings support from the prime-time schedule. Building a lasting audience at 11:30 is impossible without both.

But sadly, we were never given that chance. After only seven months, with my Tonight Show in its infancy, NBC has decided to react to their terrible difficulties in prime-time by making a change in their long-established late night schedule.

Last Thursday, NBC executives told me they intended to move the Tonight Show to 12:05 to accommodate the Jay Leno Show at 11:35. For 60 years the Tonight Show has aired immediately following the late local news. I sincerely believe that delaying the Tonight Show into the next day to accommodate another comedy program will seriously damage what I consider to be the greatest franchise in the history of broadcasting. The Tonight Show at 12:05 simply isn't the Tonight Show. Also, if I accept this move I will be knocking the Late Night show, which I inherited from David Letterman and passed on to Jimmy Fallon, out of its long-held time slot. That would hurt the other NBC franchise that I love, and it would be unfair to Jimmy.

So it has come to this: I cannot express in words how much I enjoy hosting this program and what an enormous personal disappointment it is for me to consider losing it. My staff and I have worked unbelievably hard and we are very proud of our contribution to the legacy of The Tonight Show. But I cannot participate in what I honestly believe is its destruction. Some people will make the argument that with DVRs and the Internet a time slot doesn't matter. But with the Tonight Show, I believe nothing could matter more.

There has been speculation about my going to another network but, to set the record straight, I currently have no other offer and honestly have no idea what happens next. My hope is that NBC and I can resolve this quickly so that my staff, crew, and I can do a show we can be proud of, for a company that values our work.

Have a great day and, for the record, I am truly sorry about my hair; it's always been that way.

Yours,

Conan

Discovered: Butterfly and Spider Glass Set

propoganda glasses This set of glasses consisting of a butterfly, spider and spider web are simply beautiful individually or as a prey vs. predator scenario. They were created by design group Propoganda, which was established in 1994 by of group of advertising executives who set out to instill the innate sense of Thai playfulness into every day products.

*via Mr. Matt Spangler via devincastro

Discovered: Smitten Kitchen

smitten kitchen While searching for a cake recipe for a recent dinner party, I came across Smitten Kitchen.  A blog that deliciously documents a woman's mission to create simple, unpretentious comfort food in her 42 square foot nyc kitchen.  Her recipes are straightforward and the photography on her site  is bold and beautiful.  I’ve been eyeing her arugula, potato and green bean salad and her lemony zucchini goat cheese pizza.  Sounds like a perfect summer dinner on a hot day like today.

Discovered: The Jewels of NY

flatbread pots-de-creme

My dear friend Bryn over at paper tastebuds did a lovely post about Diana Yen and Lisel Arroyo, the masterminds behind The Jewels of NY, a blog that beautifully intersects their talents in cooking, photography, design and just overall gorgeousness.  Included with the photographs are recipes for those who want to try and create their magic.  Here you can find the recipe for the Chocolate Pots de Crème with Rosemary Whipped Cream pictured above  and below is the recipe for the beautiful Flatbread.  Enjoy!

Caramelized Fennel and Tomato Flatbread Serves 2

1/4 ounce package active dry yeast 1/2 cup warm water 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, plus 1/4 cup for kneading dough 1 large egg 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil 1 1/2 teaspoons salt 3 to 4 campari tomatoes, sliced 2 tablespoons unsalted butter 1/2 of a fennel bulb, sliced, reserve about 1/4 cup fennel fronds 2 cloves of garlic, mashed into paste 1/4 cup fontina cheese, grated 1 teaspoon lemon juice zest of half a lemon fleur de sel to serve

In a small bowl stir together yeast and warm water, let stand for about 5 minutes.

Beat together egg, 1 tablespoon of oil and salt, set aside. In a medium bowl, add in 1 1/2 cups of flour and create a well in the center of the flour. Add yeast mixture into the well then add the egg mixture. Using a fork or your hands combine mixture until dough forms. Transfer dough to a floured surface and knead until stickiness is gone and feels smooth and elastic, adding flour as necessary. Add 1 tablespoon of oil into a bowl, place dough in oiled bowl and turn to coat. Cover with plastic wrap and let stand at room temperature for 1 hour.

In a large skillet over moderate heat melt butter then add in the fennel, salt and pepper to taste. Cook and stir occasionally until tender and golden, about 15-20 minutes.

Preheat oven to 375°F

On a floured surface, knead the dough and roll out to a 1/4 inch thickness. Roll the dough loosely around the rolling pin and unroll it over a 19-by 10-inch rectangle cast iron skillet. Brush dough with remaining olive oil then evenly distribute garlic paste, cheese, caramelized fennel, tomatoes, lemon zest, lemon juice and fennel fronds. Bake flatbread for 35 minutes until crust is golden brown. Sprinkle with fleur de sel and serve warm.