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Hello there! I’m taking the week off here at la Domestique to clean out the cupboards and transition from winter to spring. This week, the husband, Minnie (our dachshund), and I are moving to a new apartment in a neighborhood close by. It’s all very exciting and chaotic right now as I pack up the kitchen and photography equipment. However, I still wanted to put a few fun posts up on the blog in lieu of ingredient of the week. I’m obsessed with Instagram, the application for shooting and filtering photos on the iPhone. I love it when bloggers share what they’ve been up to- it’s such a neat look into the daily life that doesn’t always make it on the blog. So, I’ve gathered a few pictures taken this year with my phone. Follow me on Instagram for behind the scenes kitchen photos, pictures of my sidekick, Minnie, and a peek at my adventures out and about. My username is ladomestique.

Instagram collage, username ladomestique (c)2012

La Domestique on Instagram

from left to right

Out driving country roads of Colorado with my husband on a beautiful spring day.

Preserving Meyer lemons in sea salt to enjoy throughout the year. I use the technique from Canal House, Volume 1. Simply cut the lemons almost all the way through (but not quite) into quarters and pack them with salt. Stuff the lemons into a glass jar and add some lemon juice. Refrigerate the jar and turn it every so often.  After about 6 weeks, the lemons are ready to use, but they will only taste better the longer they cure. Rinse the rinds (kind of like you do capers) before using. I love preserved lemon rind garnish to add a tart, salty, floral note to salads, meaty stews, couscous, and roasted veg or fish.

In black and white: At Conor O’Neill’s Irish pub in Boulder, Colorado, meeting for a writer’s workshop group. Working with others and receiving criticism is helping me become a better writer.

A platter of spring vegetables in black and white. The whole plate was full of green- interesting how the shapes emerge when you take out the color. All of these vegetables go into a fennel soup to be featured on the blog next week.

Behind the scenes in the la Domestique kitchen: sautéing radicchio for Risotto Rosso with Red Wine, Radicchio & Smoked Mozzarella.

The beautiful vegetables of winter: radicchio and Belgian endive. Taken during Chicory Week.

Homemade potato chips are so good and simple! I just sliced a russet potato thinly using a mandolin and dropped them into a pot filled 2 inches high with hot vegetable oil. For deep frying, I don’t monitor the temperature, instead just place the tip of a wooden chopstick or skewer into the oil touching the bottom of the pan, if tiny bubbles form all around it, the oil is ready. I learned this tip from Canal House, Volume 1. Once the chips turned golden brown, I pulled them from the oil and sprinkled them with sea salt- heaven!

Bread dough rising- I bake bread twice a week, and it’s a ritual I cherish: the feel of soft, silky dough in my hands, the sweet smell of bread baking in the oven, and the pleasure of spreading butter and jam on my very own homemade loaf. Once you get in the habit, it doesn’t seem like much of an effort to throw the dough together and bake off some bread. My favorite book and method for baking bread is Richard Bertinet’s Dough: Simple, Contemporary Breads.

My sidekick, Minnie, sleeping in the sunny spot.

What have you been up to lately? Share your Instagram username in the comments section, if you would like us to find you. Click Here.