Interview with Karen Covey of The Coastal Table

This week we caught up with author and friend of the store Karen Covey to ask about her cookbook, magazine, and what inspires her. The Coastal Table is a quarterly publication on coastal living, with a New England focus but a global vision.  Any print lover knows the satisfaction of holding a freshly-printed issue, and The Coastal Table does not disappoint. Not only is the content inspiring, but it’s an elegant object you’ll be glad to have grace your coffee table. Pick it up on one of these chilly fall days, and find a cozy corner to tuck into…

 

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Featured Maker : Knit Kits from WOOL AND THE GANG

IMG_7985Wool and the Gang was founded by designers Aurelie Popper and Jade Harwood to steer the tide away from fast fashion.  They wanted something more sustainable, personal, human.  With the help of other forward-thinking women they started WATG – “pioneering fashion production that’s made in a sustainable way, bringing back knitting as a viable means of production for generations to come”.

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We’re loving Wool and the Gang‘s Knit Kits that make it super simple and easy to knit your own cozy goods, even for beginners.  Each kit has everything you need to complete a knitting project – needles, yarn, and pattern.  Come by the shop and check our beginner kits for fingerless Montana Mittens or the Yummy Scarf.  As we hunker down for colder days take up a new project – knit your own scarf or mittens this fall to keep you warm through the winter!

Featured Maker : Little Barn Apothecary

Makers: Joshua Morgan & Brad Scroggins
Origin: Joshua (who hailed from the luxury beauty and spa industry) and Brad’s (who came from the world of marketing, hospitality and brand management) kitchen in their Stone Mountain, Georgia home. Wanting to sharing their concoctions with friends and family (which were met with tremendous demand for more), the team decided to turn their den into a lab, their dining room into a shipping department and the rest is history.

 

Combine two lovers of holistic, clean living, a backyard garden full of fresh, organic herbs and a passion for sharing chemical-free skincare with the world. Give it a little shake, and you get Little Barn Apothecary! We had the chance to catch up with the masterminds behind the brand, Joshua and Brad, who were gracious enough to take some time and highlight the importance of high quality ingredients, future visions for LBA and their favorite ways to unwind.
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Yay for gay marriage!

FullSizeRender To say we’re merely happy about the Supreme Court’s gay marriage ruling is an understatement. To all of our friends in (and in support of) the LGBT community, as of Friday, June 26, we have all won! We look forward to attending so many weddings, writing many “yay” cards, and celebrating a victory that was long overdue. In the meantime, swing by OG to relish in the glorious freedom to be who you are! We’re thrilled to stock (and restock!) these hand stamped, hand painted cards by Janine Kwoh of Kwohtations. And Somerville-based Janine doesn’t only “Yay that You’re Gay”; she cheers’ to every almost-adult-awkward encounter through her clever quips like “Sorry I was Hangry”, “Sorry I got Drunk”, “Sorry you were Misgendered”, and “Sorry you hate your job”.

8 American-Made Eats for a Sweet 4th of July BBQ

Oh, 4th of July … otherwise known as:

  1. The day America became an Independent Woman, Pt. 1, and
  2. Prime time to whip out your tongs, get your grills hot and fill up your glasses with nothin’ but the good stuff.

Whether you’re planning to throw it in the backyard or on the beach while taking swigs out of a flask (no judgement, really), no 4th barbeque would be complete without some USA-reppin’. And if you’re going to be an attendee, your gift game had better be as good and noble as a bald eagle perched on top of the Statue of Liberty while red, white and blue fireworks explode in the background.

So make your life easy; peruse this little guide below. Every product is USA-made and has been crafted in small batches with love, so you can share the American goodness and hospitality with everyone you love.

  1. Raft’s Lemon Ginger Syrup pairs perfectly with whisky, gin or rum, sans high fructose corn syrup or empty flavoring agents. ($20)
  2. Sub stale store bought cookies with Lark’s crispy, light, Taza chocolate-studded Oat Bark instead. ($7)
  3. Mike’s Hot Honey packs a chili pepper-infused punch to everything from grilled meats to cocktails to ice cream (yes, ice cream.) ($16)
  4. With bold bursts of organic mustard seed and balsamic vinegar, Mustard & Co.’s Classic Mustard brings the fireworks and flavor to any hot dog or hamburger. ($10)
  5. Alex’s Ugly Sauce atop your sides delivers on the spice without sacrificing great taste, with all ingredients sourced from conscientiously grown produce. ($10)
  6. A splash of Morris Kitchen’s Spiced Apple Syrup added to your final cocktail in lieu of apple pie* will warm the body and soul with sweet, cinnamony goodness (*Kidding. Who skips the apple pie?) ($18)
  7. Make your picnic table display Instagram-worthy by placing all of your beautifully packaged, American-made goods on top of Small Gunns’ multi-purpose Plaid Towels (from $25)
  8. And lastly, goat milk-based Fat Toad Farms Caramel drizzled over sundaes (or anything, really) is the perfect ending for an otherwise sweet, sweet night. ($14)

Cheers friends, and Happy 4th!

What’s in a Brownie? Featuring Broma Brownie Company

 

Brownies are a go-to, classic dessert. I like to think of brownies like an old, faithful friend. They have been with me since childhood and carried me through many a birthday celebration, the sudden “I need to bring a dessert to a dinner party and only have 30 minutes to spare!” freak out, and those “all-I-want-are-chocolate” kind of days alike.  They are just a delightfully and perfectly simple dessert; nothing too fancy, but everything so classic. Tried and true, never to go out of style.

Derek, of Broma Brownie Company (formerly Boston Brownie Company) knows how to take this simple staple and amplify it to a whole new level. I am not joking. While always delicious, I think it is rare to find a brownie that literally makes your jaw drop. So what makes his brownies different you ask?  My hope is that this interview informs you on the artisanal nature that brownies can take on, and also gives you a look into the heart behind Broma Brownie Co. You will soon learn these are no run-of-the-mill brownies. These are  brownies filled with craft, honest ingredients and made by someone who knows food, lives food, and cares about giving you the best brownie experience you have ever had. I don’t think you will be disappointed.

O & G: So Derek, why brownies? Have they always been a love from childhood? Why not cookies or cupcakes?

D: Who doesn’t love brownies? Brownies are the most iconic dessert in America next to the apple pie, and one of the most nostalgic treats in America. Brownies can instantly bring you back to your childhood, sitting at your grandma’s kitchen table with a plate stacked full of brownies and tall cold glass of milk to wash them down. But we also found the history of the brownie very intriguing. The first brownie recipe was published in the 1896 Boston Cooking School Cook Book. We felt since the brownie was born in Boston that brownie needed proper representation. With that said I’m also a huge chocoholic!!!

O&G: What made you first say to yourself, “There needs to a new kind of brownie”? 

D: The brownie market has become complacent with run of the mill brownies made copious amounts “dutched processed”; cocoa powder that has been chemically treated to extract bitterness.  With everyone being more aware of what they’re putting into their bodies (present company included) we wanted to be honest with our ingredients and our business practices.

 O&G: Where do you source most of your ingredients? I know you said many of them are local, so where do you find these?

D: I’ve been in the restaurant industry for 20+ years and have had the opportunity to work with some of Boston’s top Chefs. I was influenced by the chef’s insistent “farm to table” approach; this is many years before it became fashionable. Over years you learn who to buy from and where to look for new sources.

O&G: Alright…someone is taking their first bite of a Broma Brownie, what is the ideal reaction? 

D: When they bite in I want them to relax their shoulders, close their eyes, tilt their head to one side, and make their “Ohhh” Face! Like it’s best thing they have ever tasted.

O&G: I feel like your brownies are much more than just a “brownie.” There is a lot of thought and art behind each brownie. 

D: Our brownies are really about the chocolate and we base our creativity around that.  Chocolate has natural inherent flavor profiles so we try to play off of them like our use of Bourbon & Cherries, Amber Rum & Raisins, Spices and Citrus.

O&G: I would love to hear a little bit more about the business behind the brownies. Can you lay out a bit of your story leading up to Broma Brownie Co.? 

D: After being in the restaurant business for 20+ years I wanted to make a change but still wanted to be part of that industry which I love. My wife Kristin is a very talented classically trained pastry chef and she had a killer brownie recipe. So we tweaked and played with the recipe making it a little more contemporary and then it all came together and we knew we had a hit and with some encouragement from family, friends, and co-workers here we are.

O&G: Alright, so honestly what about running your own business has been unexpected (difficult or wonderful)?

D: Changing people’s perception of the brownie, which is both difficult and wonderful. There’s nothing like hearing someone say, “What’s so special about your brownies, brownies are brownies”? And then watching them make their “Ohh face” as they try one, it’s the ultimate feeling.

O & G:  Finally, what is the best piece of advice given when starting Broma Brownie Company you hold on to?

D: Don’t listen to the “Nay Sayers” and cut them out of your life completely (sounds harsh but its true) and be honest! If your truly honest about what you create people will see that and it will help pave the way to your goals/success.

 

So now are you ready to go find the most delicious brownie ever? Oh…did we mention they are made with 100% organic, preservative free, locally sourced New England ingredients and contain 100% fair trade organic cacao.  (AKA Everything good in life!) Don’t deny yourself it’s goodness any longer. You need to go find yourself some Broma Brownie Co. brownies!

– Krysia

Derek will be joining us at Olives & Grace (81 Pembroke Street) on April 19th for a brownie tasting. Please come on by the shop and get a chance to talk with Derek and taste Broma Brownies for yourself!
Find more info on the event here.

 

 

 

Olives & Grace

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