JR opened his first solo exhibition in Tokyo last saturday at the Watari Museum of Contemporary Art. As facade decoration a collage of inhabitans of the North Est Japan who were hit by the tsunami in march 2011 was installed.
If a potato has any place at all on the breakfast table, surely it must be in the form of butter-golden, crispy yet fluffy, hot hash browns
I’ve spent the last fortnight in the United States. Yellow grits, blueberry pancakes, biscuits and gravy – I managed to tick off most of the breakfast items in the I-Spy book of American cliches, but to my disappointment, not a single one came with hash browns. I’d hoped to return home an expert, but my principal experience of hash browns remains the crunchy orange triangles traditionally served with spaghetti hoops at school. These, however, were certainly preferable to the greasy, floppy rosti-like creations I ate in Chicago a few years ago – and neither, I’d hope, are representative of the true glory of the hash brown.
I lugged three large American cookbooks back in my suitcase, but only one had a recipe for hash browns, and that, in the 75th anniversary edition of the classic Joy of Cooking, sounded remarkably like a rosti. Panicked, I wondered whether they were in fact different names for the same dish, but the Oxford Companion to Food reassured me that hash browns are “small rissole-like cakes of cooked and finely chopped potato” in the fine tradition of American hashes rather than the cakes cooked from raw or parboiled potato favoured in Switzerland.
Hashes, the American equivalent of British bubble and squeak, have always been a favourite way of using up motley leftovers, so this makes sense. Hash, of course, comes from the French verb hacher, to chop up, which suggests the spuds should be cut up and, of course, browned rather than just heated through. But apart from these clues, I’m going into this challenge somewhat blind. According to the various recipes, hash browns can be anything from a loose collection of crunchy fried potato chunks, often labelled as “breakfastpotatoes” on the menus I came across, to crunchy, latke-like potato pancakes – but which fits the breakfast bill best?
Unless you’re a cattle rancher they may not fit the bill on a Thursday morning before work, but crisp, buttery hash browns are well worth the effort on a lazy Saturday morning. Serve with a poached egg, and then go out for a long walk before lunch.
500g floury potatoes, scrubbed and cut into large chunks
35g butter or 25g bacon drippings
½ onion, thinly sliced
1. Put the potatoes in a large pan of cold, salted water and bring to the boil. Simmer until tender, then drain well and set aside to cool and dry out completely.
2. If using butter, clarify it by putting it in a small pan over a medium heat and skimming off the foam that rises to the top. When it stops bubbling, pour it through a fine sieve or cheesecloth to strain off any solids, then set aside until ready to use.
3. Heat a small heavy-based frying pan on a medium heat, and add half the butter or dripping. Cook the onion until soft and golden. Meanwhile, finely chop the cooked and cooled potatoes and season well.
4. Turn up the heat to medium-high and add the potatoes to the pan in one layer, stirring to incorporate the onions. Push down to make a cake, then cook for about 15 minutes until crisp and well browned on the bottom, then tip on to a plate and add the rest of the butter or dripping to the pan. Slide the hash brown back into the pan, browned side up, and cook for about another 10 minutes, then cut in half and serve.
Are hash browns the best kind of breakfast potato, or do you prefer tattie scones or country fries – indeed, does a potato have any place on the breakfast table at all? Do you yearn for the crunchy, orange cafeteria variety, and if so, does anyone have any suggestions about how to recreate those guilty pleasures from scratch?
By Felicity Cloake
Such a nice scene we found made by such a genius…
July 29–November 5, 2012
MoMA’s ambitious survey of 20th century design for children is the first large-scale overview of the modernist preoccupation with children and childhood as a paradigm for progressive design thinking. The exhibition will bring together areas underrepresented in design history and often considered separately, including school architecture, clothing, playgrounds, toys and games, children’s hospitals and safety equipment, nurseries, furniture, and books.
In 1900, Swedish design reformer and social theorist Ellen Key’s book Century of the Child presaged the 20th century as a period of intensified focus and progressive thinking regarding the rights, development, and well-being of children as interests of utmost importance to all society. Taking inspiration from Key—and looking back through the 20th century 100 years after her forecast—this exhibition will examine individual and collective visions for the material world of children, from utopian dreams for the “citizens of the future” to the dark realities of political conflict and exploitation. In this period children have been central to the concerns, ambitions, and activities of modern architects and designers both famous and unsung, and working specifically for children has often provided unique freedom and creativity to the avant-garde…….
Every summer solstice, all those European pagans celebrate their Midsummer Festivals. They are often beautiful celebrations.
From Austria to Russia, it’s an occasion for joy and celebration. In Sweden, beautiful girls dance and sing dressed in fairy clothes, their blonde hair braided in beautiful patterns. In Spain, people burn old stuff in beaches and fields, getting away with their past and jumping over the fires to clean themselves of bad spirits. And in Poland, thousands of lights float through the skies.
These images are from the city of Poznan, Poland, where 11,000 lanterns took the skies like a swarm of glowing jellyfishes, pushed into the air by the flames burning inside their nimble bodies. Definitely one for the list of places and times to visit before I die. Amazing…..
Photographer Alessandro Cicoria atop Rome’s York Hotel, home to his studio and the subject of a series of his works. Photography by Elisabetta Claudio
Milan is Italy’s undisputed design power, but the capital is on the counter-attack and the city’s skilled craftsmen are being enlisted to join the charge. Thousands of years of design practice has blanketed Rome with marble statues and slapped it with a reputation as a hotbed of old-timer output but now that slow is super, and everything old feels new again, this well-preserved city can’t help but have its own creative moment – and no one knows this better than Rome veteran Silvia Venturini Fendi (the third generation creative director of the Fendi empire).
Moonlighting as the president of AltaRoma - an organisation that promotes Roman high fashion – Venturini Fendi (pictured above) is rescuing old ateliers from obscurity and linking them with young talent. ‘I’m pushing to keep certain traditions alive. I think Rome can be the stage for what I call “neo-couture”, and it’s not just related to fashion,’ she says.
Indeed, young designers and artists from all fields are discovering the old, laborious traditions found under their noses, and are using elements of these to create extraodinary new work. ‘This is the only city in the world where you find workshops in the city centre,’ says Brazilian designer Humberto Campana , who last year had a creative reawakening while on sabbatical in Rome. ‘Young creatives are realising the intrigue of unique objects made in limited editions,’ says Venturini Fendi. ‘And Rome is the ideal place for this.’
Take her tour of the studios of some of the city’s most interesting designers and photographers.
By J.J. Martin
Şark Kahvesi (The Orient Coffee House) is one of my must stops in the Grand Bazaar Complex. It’s a traditional Turkish Coffee / tea house that is used by the Grand Bazaar population. It had been a part of the narrow streets of the bazaar until the owner walled up several sides to convert it to its formerly architectural status.
The nicotine colored walls is a reference to the times when smoking was allowed in the coffee house. It’s a popular tea and coffee spot for the locals and also for the visitors. It’s a breather spot during the hassle of the crowd in the Grand Bazaar.
The coffee nor the tea is anything special, I can even comment that it’s lame in taste as there are much better spots in the city but the atmosphere is a gem. The spot where the coffee house is located is in the junctions of at least three bazaar streets where you can sit back and watch the human traffic.
Order your self a Turkish Coffee without sugar called “sade” (meaning basis without anything) and sit back while you sip the sour coffee along with a cold glass of water. This is the most relaxing spot possible for anyone.