Sunshine & Love in LA – Part 1

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11.23.15

There’s nothing like packing the sandals you’ve long put away for the season to really make you feel like you’re going to California.  Normally in situations like this (going to a destination for a friends wedding) my husband and I try and save money and get in and out of that destination as fast as possible.  But this time was different.  My husband had never been to California, and I’d been years ago for barely three days. This, along with having friends graciously let us stay with them, allowed us to make an ultra long weekend out of this trip to my high school friend’s wedding. We were able to enjoy the sun and the food and our friends without feeling rushed. And even as we sat on the plane back to NYC and wished we could spend at least a week more in LA, we felt like we had actually gotten a break from the city and our lives, which have proved to be quite hectic for almost a year straight now.

On this special two part ‘On the Road’ edition of Domestic B(i)atch, I’m going to dive into the fantastic time we had in LA, through food, style, and recipes.  This one, focusing on the days surrounding the actual wedding day of my friends, Anthony and Christina.

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My sister, who lives in LA, picked us up from LAX on Thursday and after getting delicious drinks and food at one of her favorite spots, Public School, she drove us to where we were actually staying; at my husband, Phil’s, close friends from college’s place, Nick & Michelle. (Does that sentence even make sense??) They were BEYOND nice to us on our stay, driving us around and taking us to delicious place after delicious place while just being game to hang out and have adventures with us when we weren’t at fun wedding events.

On our first full day of course we had to eat In-N-Out burger, that’s on the requirement list when you arrive in LA, right? What I learned is that In-N-Out only uses fresh ingredients in their food, no frozen fake crap like so many others.  So if you’re going to go fast food, this is the way to do it.  And what is the actual term for how you should do it? Animal Style. Which consists of basically putting sauce, cheese, and grilled onion on whatever you order. Animal Style is always the right choice. Also, just do yourself a favor and get the double double and shut up about it.

Did I mention yet it was in the high 70’s and there wasn’t a cloud in the sky?

Nick took us on the most epic driving tour around LA and into the mountains, and when you’re used to buildings everywhere, seeing these towering mountains is beautiful and overwhelming.  It’s so common to think of California as beach and sun, it’s easy to forget or take for granted the mountains the roll through the scenery, constantly present and watching over this laid back city.

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This Banana Republic Factory Outlet dress has been one of my favorites to wear in summer weather. It has pockets and a great floral print that lets you pair a few simple pieces of jewelry to finish the look.  I also got to bust out my favorite sandals from Francesca’s again.

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That evening was a welcome happy hour for the wedding guests at The Well, a great dimly lit speakeasy type of cocktail lounge. After everyone headed back to their respective hotels or apartments, we met up with other friends at another bar and decided it would be a smart idea to party until 1am (that’s 4am on NYC time, folks).  It was the first of three very boozy days.

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The day after a wedding always leaves everyone a little worse for wear, so planning a late morning brunch to reminisce soberish about the previous night is always fun. The newlyweds, Anthony and Christina did just that at Madera Kitchen.  Phil and I devoured soft shell crab benedict along with coffee and bottomless mimosa’s while we chatted and eventually said our goodbye’s to the wedding crew.  

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A brief rain cloud passed through which left another beautiful sunny day in it’s wake. Being in the warmer weather allowed me to pack all the things I figured would be hibernating for the next seven months, like me. I could be flowy and bright, and I took advantage of that as much as possible. This blouse was a Stitch Fix win earlier this year.

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These pants were an epic find by Phil while we were out running errands a few weeks ago.  Sale on top of sale at Anthropologie is basically the only way I can afford anything in that store and this was style serendipity.  $88 which ended up being $13 and in my size? How do you not buy them? Easy, you do. They’re super light and I have a sneaky feeling they’ll be making an appearance a LOT once May hits…..unless I find a legit way to transition these baby’s into the colder months.  Challenge accepted.  

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Stitch Fix Market & Spruce blouse (similar) / Anthropologie Pilcro pants (similar) / Francesca’s sandals

While staying with Nick and Michelle we ate one of the most delicious things ever (which Michelle made), persimmon bread.  I had never even heard that this was a thing, but apparently, it is. And I am so glad it is.  It’s great room temperature, it’s great toasted with butter, it should be your breakfast everyday.

For the Bread
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Persimmon Bread
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Ingredients
  1. 2 cups whole wheat flour
  2. 1 1/2 cup AP flour
  3. 1 1/2 tsp salt
  4. 2 tsp baking soda
  5. 1 tsp nutmeg
  6. 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  7. 1/2 cup white sugar
  8. 2 cups light brown sugar
  9. 1 cup butter, melted and brought to room temperature
  10. 4 large eggs, lightly beaten and room temperature
  11. 2/3 cup bourbon
  12. 3-4 persimmon (pureed)
  13. 1 cup dried cranberries
  14. 2 cups chopped pecans
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350
  2. Whisk together flours, salt, baking soda, nutmeg, cinnamon, and sugars and mix in large bowl
  3. Create a well in the center of the dry ingredients and pour in butter, eggs, bourbon, persimmon puree, cranberries and pecans
  4. Mix well with rubber spatula and pour batter into lightly floured loaf pan and bake for 45 minutes - 1 hour, or until toothpick comes out clean in center
  5. Allow to cool before serving
Notes
  1. *You should be using Hachiya persimmons, which are more oval shaped, they are ripe when they feel like an overripe tomato, almost too soft to handle. Scoop out pulp and puree in blender or food processor
  2. *Cranberries or pecans can be substituted for numerous nuts and berries of your choice
Adapted from Putney Farm
Adapted from Putney Farm
Domestic B(i)atch http://domesticbatch.com/

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Stay tuned for part two of our LA journey….

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