Category Archives: Uncategorized

One Of The Best Birthdays Ever

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Well, today has exceeded all my expectations for a fabulous birthday in the city of lights, Paris, France. Enjoy the photos from today. Now we are off to dinner at Le Grand Colbert!

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Jordan Dunn for Free People Spring 2014

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Jordan Dunn wows in Free People’s spring 2014 collection of dresses. As always, the pieces look comfortable and effortless. I love the heavy embroidery of color and delicate and feminine silhouettes. Enjoy!

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Credit: Style Pantry

12 Years A Slave: Why I’m Glad it Won Best Picture

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I wanted to share this absolutely amazing assessment of the movie, “12 Years A Slave” with my readers. I have had my own ambivalence about seeing the movie. I try not to be an emotional cutter and movies about slavery tend to affect me so deeply that I am immobilized for longer periods than I choose to be. I consider myself a student of African American history, yet, there is such a difference when you observe the oppression from a book or a class versus a movie. I think there is so much residual guilt for those of us who did not live through that time. Could we have endured slavery with the same grace, strength and courage as our ancestors.? Perhaps there lies the pain…

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12 Years A Slave: Why I’m Glad it Won Best Picture

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   “Joyce is right about history being a nightmare –but it may be the nightmare from which no one can awaken.  People are trapped in history and history is trapped in them.”  –James Baldwin, “Stranger in the Village.”

If you follow me through social media you know I’m used to visiting plantation landscapes and dressing in the type of clothing enslaved people would wear.  I’ve cooked the enslaved way in many states across the former Confederacy and Border states.  I’ve picked cotton and worked in tobacco fields. I’ve been in rice and sugarcane fields in the Lowcountry and Lower Mississippi Valley dodging teenaged gators and poisonous snakes.  Plantations blind with darkness don’t scare me and I almost take comfort from the spirits that have surrounded me.  I have been in their presence—for real—and the ancestors have been both welcoming…

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Duro Olowu Fall 2014 RTW Collection

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Duro Olowu will hit the 10 year mark for his brand later this year. In that 10 years he has carved out a very distinct identity, one that is easily recognizable as unique to him season in and out. This Fall, Olowu presented a collection that was comfortable in it’s own skin. Every piece within was in some way a representative signature of the brand, from his bright prints to some sweeping mermaid skirts.

Fall 2014 was inspired by deco era furniture designer Elizabeth Eyre de Lanux and the Dada set—Man Ray, and Elsa Schiaparelli, who’s avante garde surrealist experimentation in the early 20th century have been widely emulated. Olowu’s own signature stamp lends itself perfectly to this inspiration. Enjoy!!

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Credit: Style Pantry

Chocolate Pâté With Cranberry Coulis

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CHOCOLATE PATE WITH CRANBERRY COULIS

#chocolatefriendsofTenaciousM… If you are trying to do something unique for your loved ones on special occasions, #Valentine’sDay, this recipe is just the right choice because the dessert is excellent in all ways; taste, appearance, presentation and is very easy to do. It is something like fudge; the only difference is it is a lot softer, the taste is great, and the sweet flavor of chocolate is enhanced by the tart tang of the cranberry coulis. You may also substitute raspberry for this recipe if you prefer.

Ingredients For Chocolate Pâté with Cranberry Coulis:

Cranberry Coulis
1 1/2 cups jellied cranberry sauce
3/4 cup cranberry juice cocktail
1 teaspoon lime juice

Pâté
1 1/2 cups heavy whipping cream, divided
1 large egg yolk
2 cups (12-oz. pkg.) semi-sweet chocolate morsels
1/3 cup light corn syrup
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter or margarine
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Whipped cream

Directions For Chocolate Pâté with Cranberry Coulis:

For Cranberry Coulis:
Place cranberry sauce, cranberry juice cocktail and lime juice in blender; cover. Blend until smooth. Refrigerate. Makes 1 3/4 cups.

For Pâté:
Line 8 x 4-inch baking pan with plastic wrap. Combine 1/4 cup whipping cream and egg yolk in small bowl. Combine morsels, corn syrup and butter in heavy-duty medium saucepan. Melt over lowest possible heat. When morsels begin to melt, remove from heat; stir. Return to heat for a few seconds at a time, stirring until smooth. Remove from heat. Add cream mixture to saucepan. Cook, stirring constantly, over medium heat for 1 minute. Let cool to room temperature.

Beat remaining cream and vanilla extract in small mixer bowl until soft peaks form. Using a rubber spatula, gently fold chocolate mixture into the whipped cream. Pour into prepared pan. Cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate overnight or freeze 3 hours.

TO SERVE:
Spoon Cranberry Coulis on a dessert plate. Place a slice of Chocolate Pâté on plate. Garnish with whipped cream.

Chocolate and Lemon Pie

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Chocolate and Lemon Pie

This dessert is like two of my favorite flavors getting married, and you’re invited to the wedding. #chocolatefriendsofTenaciousM Enjoy!

Preparation time : 25 minutes Cooking time : 10 minutes
Serves: 10 persons

Ingredients
2½ cups oreo cookies crushed
1/3 cup butter, melted

For the filling:
1 tin sweetened condensed milk
2 tablespoons butter, melted
2 tablespoons cornstarch
2 egg yolks, beaten
3 tablespoons lemon juice
1 teaspoon lemon zest, grated

For the topping:
1 tin Cream
200 g semi-sweet chocolate chips, melted
½ cup water

Preparation
Combine cookies and melted butter in a mixing bowl and mix well. Press cookies mixture into the base and sides of 26 cm loose bottom tart tin and set in the fridge for 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, in medium non-stick saucepan, combine sweetened condensed Milk , butter and cornstarch. Bring to boil over medium heat with constant stirring; cook and stir for 1 minute. Remove from heat and pour a small amount into egg yolks and mix then put the egg yolks mixture into the same saucepan. Cook over medium heat for 2 minutes and remove from heat. Add lemon juice, lemon zest and stir.

Pour the mixture over the prepared tart base and set in the fridge for ½ hour or until set. In a medium bowl, combine cream , melted chocolate and water and pour evenly all over the filling. Place in the fridge until the top is firm to slice.

The Isley Brothers – Over The Hump Old School Sound Check

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The Isley Brothers are an American musical group originally from Cincinnati, Ohio, originally a vocal trio consisting of brothers O’Kelly Isley, Jr., Rudolph Isley and Ronald Isley.

The group has been cited as having enjoyed one of the “longest, most influential, and most diverse careers in the pantheon of popular music”. Alongside a fourth brother, Vernon, the group originally performed gospel music until Vernon’s death a couple years after its original formation. After moving to the New York City area in the late 1950s, the group had modest chart successes during their early years, first coming to prominence in 1959 with their fourth single, “Shout”, written by the three brothers. Initially a modest charted single, the song eventually sold over a million copies.

Afterwards the group recorded modestly successful works for a variety of labels, including the top 20 single, “Twist & Shout” and the Motown single, “This Old Heart of Mine (Is Weak for You)” before recording and issuing the Grammy Award-winning hit, “It’s Your Thing” on their own label, T-Neck Records. Initially influenced by gospel and doo-wop music, the group began experimenting with different musical styles incorporating elements of rock and funk music as well as pop balladry. The inclusion of younger brothers Ernie Isley (lead guitar, drums) and Marvin Isley (bass guitar), and Rudolph’s brother-in-law Chris Jasper (keyboards, synthesizers) in 1973 turned the original vocal trio into a self-contained musical band. Credit: Wikipedia

The Isley Brothers won me over with their albums: “Go For Your Guns” and “The Heat Is On”, featuring “For the Love of You”,”Make Me Say It Again, Girl” and “Voyage to Atlantis.” Here is one of my favorite versions of the song “Caravan of Love.”