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Gift Guide: Father’s Day

June 7, 2013 at 10:00 amBY Joanna

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I’m always at a loss when it comes to father’s day.  My dad seems to have everything he needs, so I inevitably end up buying him gardening supplies every year.  This year I’m swearing off the garden center and trying to come up with something more unique.  I’m fairly certain my dad would like just about anything in this guide.  Some of my faves (because I’m always shopping for me really) are the 100lb coal bag from Best Made and the Things Come Apart book.

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The Grillbot seems kind of awesome too…no?  Letting a robot clean my grill for me.  I think my dad would appreciate the help.  And the Dynazap bug catcher.  Safer than harmful bug spray, and if it works, it’s well worth the price.  OK, I think I’ve found a few non-gardening related options.  What are you giving your dad?

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That’s What She Said: Margarita Party

June 6, 2013 at 10:07 amBY Joanna and Lorien

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Honest confession – this post was supposed to be about guacamole.  Lorien and I went to the market to buy supplies, and well….we decided margarita’s were a better idea.  And they were.  We had a fantastic time testing some different margarita recipes.  And why not have a margarita taste testing on a Wednesday evening.  Our friend Abby joined us to help with the tasting.  Thanks Abby!

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Joanna said: This recipe was conjured up in the market, not from a trusty recipe book, so there was a certain level of experimentation involved.  I knew I wanted to incorporate some savory flavors.  The outcome was a delicious cocktail, super refreshing and goes down easy, but not exactly what you think of as a margarita.  Here’s how I made it (makes 2):

Ingredients:

  • Juice from 1.5 cucumbers (I sliced half a cucumber for garnish)
  • 1 bunch of cilantro juiced (a few leaves reserved for garnish)
  • 2.5 oz fresh squeezed lime juice (6 limes)
  • 1 thinly sliced jalapeno (a few slices reserved for garnish)
  • 3 oz of tequila
  • 2 oz triple sec

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Directions:  Muddle 1/2 the sliced jalapenos with 1/2 oz of triple sec and set aside.  Combine cucumber/cilantro juice, tequila, triple sec, and lime juice in a shaker with ice and shake vigorously.  You want the ice to chip off to create a bit of icy froth.  Pour into glass, add up to 1/2 a tsp of juice from the muddled jalapenos.  How much you use depends on how spicy you like it.  And that’s it, pretty simple, but certainly not your traditional margarita.  I’d recommend enjoying on a hot sunny day.

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Lorien said: This has been my favorite ‘That’s What She Said’ post so far. After a busy day at work, a margarita party is what everyone should be doing. Unlike Joanna I needed a little guidance in making my margarita, I don’t make them often so I wanted to get the proportions just right. I looked to Food and Wine to guide me and I found a pretty darn fantastic recipe – Blood Orange Margarita with Ginger.

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I was a little unsure how the ginger would mix in, but I’m so glad I took the risk because the result was delicious and also really easy to make. I used navel oranges (the grocery store didn’t have blood oranges), but I know blood oranges would be even more amazing in this drink. It was sweet, refreshing (fresh squeezed juices are the key) and I loved the little punch of ginger at the end of each sip.

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Ingredients:

  • 1/4 teaspoon finely grated fresh ginger
  • 1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon fresh blood-orange juice
  • 3 tablespoons tequila
  • 1 tablespoon Cointreau
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
  • Lime slice, for garnish
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Directions:
Put the grated ginger in a small sieve set over a small bowl and press to extract the juice (Since you end up straining the drink before pouring into a glass, instead of using a sieve I just infused the drink with the ginger. I grated the ginger into a bowl, measured the ginger into the shaker).

Combine the ginger juice with the orange juice, tequila, Cointreau and lime juice in a cocktail shaker filled with cracked ice and shake vigorously for 10 seconds. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass, garnish with the lime slice and serve.

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Garden Update: Heirloom Tomatoes

June 5, 2013 at 10:00 amBY Joanna

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I’m so excited to watch my tomato plants grow this season.  I’ve selected a diverse variety of heirlooms that I think together make the perfect tomato salad.  That’s right – I’m growing a garden based on one dish, but it is the perfect dish, right?  Add a little olive oil, sea salt and basil – it’s good to go.  And I’ll have my own personal supply.  I just love the ridiculous number of varieties that are out there, and I consistently plant too many tomatoes because I have a hard time deciding on just a few.  I’ve even started a pinterest board just for tomatoes.  Here’s what I’ve planted this year:

  • Sprite – super productive grape tomatoes.  Super sweet and they’ll grow right up to the frost
  • Red Zebra – another high producer providing a season’s supply of 2″ red and yellow striped sweet tomatoes.
  • Paul Robeson – originating in Russia these plants produce the most amazing sweet and acidic dark red/black fruit.
  • Roman Candle – sweet and meaty, these 2″ wide and 4″ long banana shaped fruits also make great sauces.
  • Speckled Roman – a paste tomato, this variety gets to 6″ long and makes a great sauce.
  • Green Zebra – lemon/lime flavored, amazing 2″ fruits are perfect for summer salads.
  • Hazel Mae – a large beefstake variety great for slicing and salads

Do you have favorites?

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Must-Haves for Keeping Cool

June 4, 2013 at 10:36 amBY Lorien

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Boy it was hot this weekend. As I laid on the beach on Friday and spent Saturday night camping in the heat, all I wanted was things to keep me cool. The heat almost made me dive into the ice cold (ice cold!) and it definitely made me obsessed about stopping for ice-cream on the way home (which we did and it was amazing).

As we camped Saturday night, I realized how important it is to pack things that keep you cool and refreshed. I’m determined to not complain about the hot weather this summer, and these few items will help me do just that.

1. I’m eager to try these Peanut Butter Banana Pops. They look simple to make and who doesn’t love chocolate and peanut butter combined? I love that this recipe used almond milk instead of milk.

2. I love dresses for the summer (I know I’m not alone) that you can just throw on and know you’ll look put together and will stay cool. I’m a big fan of this one from Madewell (I’m excited one is coming the the Providence Place Mall soon), it basically looks like a big t-shirt, which for me is a “I need one in every color”.

3. I swear by these Cleansing Wipes from Simple Skincare. I’m a little obsessed about these and I could write a whole post about how amazing these are. I’ve been camping twice over the last month and these saved my face. You feel refreshed and clean after you use them but they do not dry out your skin. They’re not perfumey so they’re great for everyone.

4. The kitchn shared this recipe for a Cold Noodle Salad with Creamy Peanut Sauce that will be a perfect dish for a hot Summer day, whether you’re at work or on the beach.

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Easy to Love: Stock Culinary Goods on Hope Street

June 3, 2013 at 11:13 amBY Lorien

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Yesterday I visited Stock Culinary Goods on Hope Street to take photos for an upcoming interview with Jan, Stock’s owner, for Get Along and Go for next Monday.

The store is like my dream kitchen. I admire the way the store is so carefully curated and beautifully edited. The moment I walked into her store, months ago, I was in love with everything and knew immediately I wanted to interview Jan for Get Along and Go. Since there were so many wonderful things to share about Stock, I thought I would share a few items that have now made it onto my wish-list after yesterday’s visit.

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I love Stock’s selection of mortal and pestles. They are one of the oldest kitchen tools for a reason….

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The store has me thinking about replacing all my plain pots in exchange for these beautifully bright ones.

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A standout item for me for its design, these make me want to give salt and pepper shakers as a gift to everyone. Wouldn’t you you want one?

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A fan of Rifle for a long time, I was very happy to see their recipe cards at Stock. Nice to know I can buy my favorite recipe cards locally now.

Check out Stock at stockpvd.com or on Facebook. Check back next Monday for my interview with Jan!

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Friday Giveaway: Sweet Shades From Queen of Hearts

May 31, 2013 at 10:00 amBY Joanna

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Today is the big day!  Our first friday giveaway over here at Get Along And Go.  It’s been a while now that I’ve wanted to partner up with a shop owner and offer our readers a chance to win some Get Along And Go approved goods.  The first give-away partner that came to mind was Karen Beebe’s shops Queen of Hearts and Modern Love (she owns two stores!) in Providence, RI.  Both of these businesses are chock-a-block full of clothing, shoes and accessories we’re dying to own, so it seemed like the natural pick for our first give-away…plus Karen is incredibly generous and jumped at the opportunity to participate.

Not only does Karen curate two beautiful stores, she’s launched a web shop as well, where you can easily pop in and shop from home.  It’s easy to build up a lengthy wish list poking around her site.  She has an abundance of summer dresses right now, I could buy an entirely new wardrobe!  And the best part of all, Karen has a selective eye for the well priced – super reasonable fashion finds – so nothing is priced outrageously.  We’re pretty lucky to have such a great store within walking distance.

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Queen of Hearts is giving away these sweet Pamela shades to one of our lucky readers.  To enter to win – visit the Queen of Heart/Modern Love online shop and come back to this post and let us know what you liked the most.  Leave a comment here and you will be entered to win…that’s it.  Simple.  Entry for the give-away will be open all weekend.  We’ll announce the winner Monday morning on Twitter/Facebook (so make sure you’re following us on facebook and twitter).

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Eating the Alphabet: A

May 30, 2013 at 12:30 pmBY Joanna and Lorien

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Welcome to our new series on the blog – Eating the Alphabet. We will be “eating” our way through the alphabet in this series. We will be sharing with you different foods, recipes, favorite meals and restaurants that have been inspired by a different letter in the alphabet. First up is the letter ‘A’:

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Lorien says: As I was thinking of which foods I wanted to feature for ‘A’, I was going through my memory of meals I’ve had, which veggies are my favorite, which spices I’ve been using lately, now that Spring/Summer is here which foods I’m craving….. and I decided on apricots and asparagus for their simplicity in preparation this time of year. They’re fantastic on their own or a tiny something takes them over the top.

Apricots: Apricots are heavenly by themselves or in jams, in salads, in drinks, in sorbets, in ice creams… for all these reasons they’re a favorite of mine in the summer. I’m really looking forward to trying these recipes this summer: Apricot-Chile Hot Sauce, Gluten Free Apricot Strawberry Cake and Apricot and Pistachio Crumbles with Vanilla Ice cream. (image)

Asparagus: When asparagus is in season and when they’re cooked right, asparagus is as addicting as french fries to me. My favorite preparation of asparagus is simple – roasted with a little cheese, breadcrumbs and lemon sprinkled on top. Combine that with eggs or pasta, or both, I can eat various variations of these ingredients weekly. (image)

Joanna says: Asparagus, Arugula, Artichoke, Avocado…what a great letter to start of a series all about our favorite foods.  It’s hard to choose with all these options – but if I had to pick my favorite food beginning with the letter ‘A’ I’d have to say…errrr…I really can’t pick a favorite when it comes to artichokes and avocados.  That’s like asking a parent to pick their favorite child.  I just can’t – I love them both too much.

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Avocado: I’ve never grilled avocados myself, but I’ve had them in restaurants and they are so good!  It seems like a strange concept at first – cooking avocado? But it works, and it’s simple to do.  This recipe includes grilled tomatoes, garlic, chiles, cilantro, sea salt…what more could you want really.  And if you’re entertaining outdoors, these avocados are easy to assemble and the presentation will impress.  You grill the halved avocados with the skin on and fill the hole with the grilled tomatoes and chiles – eat with a spoon – skin on.   I’m absolutely trying these for my next BBQ.

Artichoke: My new obsession is the combo of shaved artichoke and truffle.  Ever since having the Artichoke Crudo and Celery salad at Bacaro I can’t stop thinking about this pairing (I made my own version at home the other night and I have to say – it came out great).  This recipe from Saveur looks like a good one to try at home too.  Garlic, lemon, baby artichokes, white truffle, Parmesan. Yum. Perfect for a light Spring dinner.

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Garden Update: Trellis Veggies

May 29, 2013 at 1:21 amBY Joanna

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One of the best solutions to a tiny garden is a trellis.  My little garden is only 12 ft x 12 ft, but I’m able to produce a fairly big crop by growing vertically (it may only be 12 ft square, but its nearly 12 ft tall).  For many plants this is the preferred method of growing too – so it’s a win-win.  Certain vine-like veggies will rot on the ground, so the added height gives them a chance to keep their leaves dry, and reach better sun.  My little garden is almost entirely on giant trellis.  If you have limited space I recommend trying these vertical plants:

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Pole Bean: If you’re growing beans, I recommend a pole bean over a bush bean.  You’ll get the same yield, but use a fraction of the space (fresh beans off the vine are unlike any store bought bean).  Just plant near a trellis or bamboo pole – they won’t need much guidance.  They will grow in spirals around the support.

Snap Pea:  These spring treats need no help.  Give them a net to climb on and they’ll find their own way.  When they’re finish blooming you can grow beans on the same trellis.

Cucumber:  The fruit stays cleaner and is less prone to bugs and rot when elevated on a trellis.  Cucumber vines need little guidance, they have plenty of curly feelers seeking out a pole to grow on.  Netting may not be strong enough – they can get heavy.  I recommend a more solid structure with bamboo poles.

Squash:  Like cucumbers, squash do better growing vertical, but they may need a little guidance.  Keep a spool of garden twine handy and you can tie new growth to the trellis as the plant matures.  If the fruits get big you may want to provide additional cradle support by tying the fruit itself to the trellis.

Tomato:  Most people use round tiered cages to support tomato plants.  They will also do just fine on a more traditional wall-like trellis, but they will need additional guidance.  Get out that twine.

Pepper:  Some pepper plants can get quite tall, and with guidance (twine) they will grow right up a trellis.  The added support is helpful as pepper plants can get weighed down by their own fruits.

Melon: Like squash and cucumbers, melons are a vine, and do best on a trellis.  They will need little guidance, as they seek out poles with their little curly feelers.  As the fruits develop they may need additional support to keep from weighing down the plant.  Use your twine to cradle the melon to a support post.

 

 

 

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From the Weekend: Camping in Cooperstown

May 28, 2013 at 10:48 amBY Lorien

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What a weekend! So many good things were squeezed into three days… How was your Memorial Day Weekend? We went up to Cooperstown on Saturday to camp for a night at the Ommegang Brewery. There was live music, fireworks, lots of good brews, we drove by a few parades, the weather finally warmed up on Sunday – so many good things were squeezed into only two days. I feel like it’s officially Summer.

And after a weekend away, it feels good to be back.

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Kitchen Muse: Healthy Eats

May 27, 2013 at 9:00 amBY Lorien

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Hope everyone is enjoying their Memorial Day Weekend! After an amazing bar mitzvah at the Science Museum on Saturday, I’m up in Cooperstown, NY camping at the Ommegang Brewery (they’re the ones that partnered up with HBO for the Games of Thrones beer!). After what I’m sure will be a weekend filled with lots of eating and drinking, major indulging, I’m looking forward to coming back and focusing on eating healthy. Here are a few recipes that I’m looking forward to cooking up:

Millet “Falafel” with Avocado + Tomato Relish, Goop
Gluten-Free Grapefruit + Pistachio Muffins, The Vanilla Ben Blog
Spring Spirit Polenta, My New Roots
Sweet potato w/ brown rice, chives, crispy smoky chickpeas + almonds, First Mess
Spinach Strawberry & Radish Salad, Good Things Grow
Strawberry Sorbet, The Pure Vege

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