Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Happy Halloween

Halloween cupcakes a la Tim Burton, found on Pinterest
The Yumpkin from Hotel Chocolat in Copenhagen and London
Whole grain Chocolate Orange Halloween cake, from Texanerin Baking
Our very own homemade Halloween cupcakes with maple cream-cheese frosting
Whether we are celebrating the Halloween this year with a big costume party, or making thrillingly scary decorations for the kids, or carving a pumpkin, we all need some sweet (and fun!) treats for the Halloween season. Here are a few of our favorites that inspired and made us happy this season: adorable Yumpkin from the Hotel Chocolat in Copenhagen, scary cupcakes a la Tim Burton found on Pinterest, and gorgeous whole-grain Halloween chocolate orange cake from Texanerin Baking which we'll hopefully master by the next year Halloween - stay tuned.
P.S. And if you need something fast, try these no-fuss homemade Halloween cupcakes with maple cream-cheese frosting: a supermarket cupcake mix (we used chocolate variety), and the frosting: cream-cheese (1 pack of 200g), 3/4 cup powdered sugar, 1/8 cup maple syrup, 50g butter; fluff with electrical mixer, chill and frost using the piping bag - voila. Happy Halloween !

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Have a good-hair day

Earlier this year my hair-dresser Lykke at Ellegaard Hairfactory in Frederiksberg introduced me to the beautiful and fantastically effective hair care range from Japan - Shu Uemura. Ever since i've been hooked. And never disappointed by any of Shu Uemura hair products. Among top favorites are Full Shimmer collection (their Illuminating Treatment masque is pure magic), Satin Design White Tea Polishing Milk for the best blow-dry, frizz-control and heat-styling protection, and phenomenal Essence Absolue Nourishing Protective Oil for high shine and moisture boost. 
You can shop for Shu Uemura Art of Hair at Ellegaard Hairfactory, Frederiksberg, and Cha Cha Cha hair-salon at Illum, Copenhagen. If you're in the UK, you can find these products online at the Urban Retreat. Say goodbye to bad-hair days !

Monday, October 29, 2012

Have a wonderful week

With one extra hour of sleep as of yesterday, we are now so much better equipped to deal with the lack of sunshine and freezing temperature outside, and enjoy everything Copenhagen city has to offer this week that kick-starts High Season of Hygge

We could sign up for salsa classes: new winter season as of today.
Book tickets to the opera - Puccini's Madame Butterfly, for instance - at Det Kongelige Teater.
Throw a Halloween party with very scary and fun decorations.
Watch new documentaries at Copenhagen International Documentary Film Festival CPH:DOX, that is running November 1-11. Whether you are up for some drama, politics, art or want to catch up on the latest hits (Steve Jobs: The Lost Interview, is on the list as well), you can find pretty much everything in this year program. 
And finally, enjoy the Christmas beer on J-Dag: Friday November 2, 20:59 hrs.
Stay warm and hyggeligt !
P.S. And Happy Birthday to the wonderful triplets Alex, Vincent and Sebastian :)

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Cream cheese swirl brownies

Earlier this week I got an invitation to friends' pot-luck dinnerparty, and signed up to bring a dessert. Looking for baking inspiration, i came across this cream cheese swirl brownie recipe, which i couldn't resist, given my weakness for all things cheesecake'y. I never tried making cream cheese brownies before, although it is in fact one of my top favourite desserts (the best ones i've tried served at MJ-Coffee on Gothersgade 26, Copenhagen). Turns out, it's not that easy, creating a swirl pattern: it might take some practice to master that one. Otherwise it is quick and delicious, not too cakey or gooey; a hit at the dinnerparty.
Tips: make sure to mix the brownie batter and separately cheesecake layer ingredients really well (food processor or electrical mixer). 1 stick of butter in the recipe equals appr 100 g. Pre-heat your oven to 175C and bake for 30 min max, otherwise brownies will be too dry. You do not necessarily have to add red food colouring, unless you want a red velvet variety. Best served with a dollop of vanilla ice-cream. Enjoy !

Friday, October 26, 2012

Shaken, not stirred

Who is your all times favourite James Bond? And have you booked your tickets yet to the Skyfall premiere in Copenhagen today? To get into a Bond mood, you might want to stop by for a pre-premiere martini at one of these 5 new bars in Copenhagen. And if you want to look buff like a Bond girl, Cult Beauty UK has a massive selection of beauty products that will bring out the femme fatale in you, we've been told.
P.S. if a Bond movie is not really your thing, check out the Fotomessen in Forum, Copenhagen, that is running October 26-28. Paradise for anyone who's interested in photography. Have a fun weekend !


Thursday, October 25, 2012

Fall favourites

sweater scarf scotch and soda
Cold weather and shorter days call for something snuggly, bright and cheerful to wear. Here're a few of our Favorite Fall Fashion Finds this week: adorable Study Group sweater from Spool No.72, cosy crew neck sweater and scarf from Scotch & Soda Collection, cool army coat from Emerson Fry, and Italian cashmere in amazing colors from J.Crew. Stay warm and chic !
P.S. and keep an eye on upcoming Martin Margiela collection for H&M in November.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Bright-Eyed

With winter season (almost) upon us, the mornings are getting darker, alarm snoozing time significantly longer, and opening your eyes every morning more and more of a challenge. Fortunately, there're some excellent skincare products that can help us erase any signs of late / sleepless nights (new Moms, take a note), jet-lag, stress, workaholism, winter blues, all-night partying, etc. Bright-eyed, here we come. 

In Copenhagen, my top go-to wonder products for the eyes are Touch-Expert Advanced Multi-corrective Concealer By Terry (amazing texture and farvel to any sign of tiredness) and recently discovered Hydro Cool Firming Eye Gels by Skyn Iceland  (the effect of these under-eye patches is unbelievable. In just 10 min). Skyn Iceland products are now available in Sephora Illum Copenhagen. Have a happy Wednesday !

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Hotel Chocolat in Copenhagen

Have you made it yet to the newly opened Hotel Chocolat in Copenhagen? Whether you are looking for an exquisite gift for someone special, or just feeling a little self-indulgent (yes, we deserve it), stop by this world-famous British chocolatier's - it will bring you instant happiness. Giant chocolate slabs, luxurious truffles, gift bags and fun treats, hot drinking chocolate (Aztec chilli is the best), you can find pretty much everything there. Affordable luxury in a nutshell. 
P.S. And Happy birthday to little Zacky and Christina ! :)

Monday, October 22, 2012

New week new beginnings

fall
Photo from http://www.etsy.com/shop/bomobob














After such a beautiful and sunny weekend in Kyiv, Berlin, London and to some extent Copenhagen (Saturday at least was perfect), it's somewhat tough to switch back into a working mode. Unless of course we have something to look forward to in a working week. What could brighten your day at the office, school/university or at home busily running around with kids? i personally love all things stationerY, and believe that a bright and chic notebook can significantly increase both your creativity and productivity. On my wish-list this fall is this luxurious 'Make it happen' notebook from Smythson, and this all-times-favourite Ordning&Reda (the latter comes in a variety of happy colors).

Have a wonderful week !

Make it happen Smythson notebook, stationery
stationery

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Pumpkin Apple Bake

This beautiful fall weekend in Copenhagen we continue with our apple baking theme, and here's another recipe for all the apple lovers. This time the recipe comes straight from Ukraine, courtesy of my friend Nata, who is an incredibly gifted and creative baker. 

This pumpkin-apple bake has a texture of pudding. It's light, delicious, not too sweet, perfect with your morning coffee or as an afternoon treat. 

Ingredients
1 fairly large or 2 smallish pumpkins (or a can of ready-made pumpkin puree, if you can find one)
100 g milk
3 eggs
1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
1 teaspoon of cinnamon
100 g of cane sugar (you can add less) and separately 2 table spoons for caramelized apples
3-4 apples, peeled, cores and stems removed, cut into small pieces
1 (-ish) table spoon of butter
40 g (one small pack) of pudding powder (i use Dr.Oetker Original Pudding Vanilla, available in all supermarkets in Denmark)

How-to
Prepare pumpkin puree if you haven't managed to find ready-made stuff in Denmark (i haven't): either follow this very detailed recipe, or simply cut pumpkin 'meat' into small pieces and boil it in a small saucepan for about 15-20 min, until very soft. Drain and pulse in a food processor or blender until very creamy and smooth (takes seconds). 

Preheat oven to +180-190C.

Add milk, eggs, vanilla, cinnamon and 100 g of sugar to the pumpkin puree and pulse again until very smooth.

Separately caramelize the apples: very simple - all you need is a frying pan, apples, a bit of butter and 2 table spoons of sugar. Keep it at low heat, stir continuously, 5-7 min.

Add caramelized apples and pudding to the mix in your blender, pulse a few times again, and pour it into the buttered cake (or loaf) form. Mine was a loaf pan, the same i normally use for the banana bread. 

Bake for about 40min. 

Bon appetite and have a great Sunday !
P.S. thank you Nata :)

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Collar necklace


Collar necklaces are everywhere this year. They're a perfect accessory: chic, easy to pull (and take) off, suit pretty much every outfit and can transform the simplest of your t-shirts. You can take your pick from a variety of brands - find them online at ASOSNet-a-porter, yoox, Shopbop, or at H&M, COS, Second Female and Zara stores.

Here in Copenhagen my top favorites are these two, from COS and Tom Binns.

Happy shopping !

Friday, October 19, 2012

Make someone happy this weekend

Hoptimist®. Photography & creative direction by Lars Brandt Stisen
A few days ago my friend Christina sent me a link to this creative and sweet little video - Make Someone Happy. I hope watching it will put a big smile on your face just as it did on mine. Have a happy weekend !

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Peanut butter grain-free cookie dough bites


I found the recipe for these surprisingly easy, very healthy, yet absolutely delicious cookie dough bites on one of my favourite baking blogs - Texanerin Baking. Erin, the author of these recipes, creates amazing things that are made of healthy stuff (whole grain, reduced sugar, often grain and gluten-free) and taste fantastic. Guilt-free dessert, who'd say no to that?
These grain-free peanut butter chocolate chip cookie dough bites can be made in 20 min tops. Plus 5-10 min if you are making your own peanut butter (i know! who knew it's so quick and easy). And even though Erin does not recommend serving these cookie dough bites cold, anyone who tried them (myself including) enjoyed both, just baked and chilled versions. Happy baking !

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Cult classic make-up


Almost three years ago on a trip to the US, my friend Louise introduced me to the cult makeup brand NARS while we were browsing together through beauty products at Sephora. One NARS product in particular, recommended by Louise, has ever since become a staple in my make-up drawer: this incredibly flattering eye-shadow in Ashes to Ashes.

NARS is not that easy to find in Denmark (any tips appreciated), hence whenever travelling abroad, I am always on a lookout for NARS sign, buying Ashes to Ashes again and again. In London I previously found it at Space NK; when it comes to Copenhagen, it seems that now we can buy it online (yay) at NARS European official store.

Apart from Ashes to Ashes, my other two NARS must-have's are this magical highlighter - a multi-purpose stick for eyes, cheeks, lips and body, in iconic Copacabana shade, and this illuminator that I swear by, in unforgettable shade that 'lights the skin from within'. 

Stay luminous !
PS Thank you Louise :)

Monday, October 15, 2012

Rainy Happy Monday

http://scotchandscones.tumblr.com/post/17376076577

Wouldn't it be perfect to extend the weekend by one extra day in bed, reading The Charisma Myth, drinking hot chocolate and watching last three episodes of Homeland. Especially when it's been raining non-stop here in Copenhagen for the past 48 hours... Alas, staying in bed on a Monday is not an option, with another busy week rolling in. The answer to Monday blues and the downpour outside is this and this bright, light and chic rain gear from Adidas by Stella McCartney, that will keep us warm and dry come rain or hail. Enjoy biking in the rain and have a great week !

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Upside-down Italian Apple cake





Baking anything with apples, no matter what recipe you follow, always brings happiness to the house. It feels homey, cozy, hyggeligt. I got this recipe of an Italian upside-down Apple cake from my friend Corrie, and just like her other recipes, the making of it was easy, unfussy, with a great, delicious result.

The baking time in my case went up to 50-55 minutes, and i adjusted the temperature from initial 175C to 190C; must be the type of oven that you use. The cake is not too sweet, and best served with creme fraiche or, if you prefer it sweeter, with vanilla ice-cream.

Have a wonderful Sunday !

Friday, October 12, 2012

Weekend

Image from www.cupcakesandcashmere.com
Here in Copenhagen this has been an incredibly packed, duracell-ish, sleep-deprived at times yet a very productive week. Now that the weekend is just around the corner, i can't wait to relax and recharge the batteries, sleeeeep, bake, read, and catch up on all the fun things happening in my city. Starting with the Culture NIght. Tasting the cakes at the opening of Creme de la creme at the Meyers Bakery in Magasin on Kongens Nytorv. Getting to the CPH DOX & Diesel Programlaunch at Bremen theatre. Baking italian apple cake. Watching a documentary Happy that I came across here. Finishing the book i've been reading...And just being lazy. 

P.S. if you haven't yet seen Weekend, a beautiful, simple, honest and brave movie about love and identity, hurry up to catch it at Empire Bio in Copenhagen.

Happy weekend !

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Fall fashion: on the wish-list this week







This week has been the chilliest yet this season with the temperature dropping to zero degrees virtually overnight. To stay warm without compromising on fashion, we need a combination of waterproof, snugly and edgy items in our closet, that would carry us through this (temporary!) stint of nastiness outside. Our hearts are after this adorable J.Crew Peter Pan collar tee, the sunniest Hunter boots and uber-cool yet incredibly comfortable ankle boots by Camilla Skovgaard (last spotted at Illum, Copenhagen). If only the sale season started this week... 

Stay warm !