Updated: May 29, 2018
TO DRINK (May): Here in St. Louis, we seem to have skipped spring entirely. And with the onset of summer temperatures, I basically want to consume anything befitting a checkered tablecloth treatment. Enter this milkshake recipe. Yes, you will have to turn on your oven as prep, but it’s only for about 30-40 minutes. Don’t skip that step- the roasted strawberries are a revelation, and will have you wondering what else you can slather it on. Find the recipe for the creamy, slightly minty milkshake with freshly roasted strawberries here. Side-note: should you not have lemons or buttermilk on hand, omit the lemons and substitute for any kind of milk.
TO DOWNLOAD (Caroline): Now that I’m (kind-of) finished with grad school I have loads more time to read for pleasure! I’ve been waiting four years for this! However, my excitement quickly turns to anxiety when I walk into a bookstore and see all options. If you’re like me and don’t want to waste your time on a terrible book you bought just because the cover was well-designed, then the goodreads app might be of some use. A friend (shout-out to Helen!) told me about it this week, and I’m so pumped. It’s basically a social media app for books. You can see your friends’ recommendations and you can make reading lists for yourself based on personalized recommendations.
TO INDULGE (May): So, I can’t mention that delicious strawberry milkshake without going on a brief rant about vanilla ice cream. Most ice creams these days don’t have enough cream to be worthy of the label “ice cream”, so they’re being sold as “frozen dairy dessert”. Secondly, in a cost saving effort, ice cream makers (I’m looking at you, Breyers) pump extra air into their formulas and utilize vanilla flavor substitutes made from wood pulp (more on that here). The increased aeration results in utter disappointment (not to mention, a waste of calories). While I generally do not turn down dessert, I’ve been a bit leery of supermarket ice cream. That being said, for flavor and value, Blue Bunny Vanilla is my current pick. Read about other viable supermarket ice creams here.
TO LISTEN (Caroline): I’m honestly not a huge podcast person. I usually end up listening to music on long, summer road trips. But this podcast is changing my tune. Malcolm Gladwell is a Canadian journalist who has written several best-selling books and is one of my favorite thinkers. In his podcast, Revisionist History, Gladwell tries to take an honest look at events in the past to discover aspects we missed. He is a very sweet, mild-tempered kind of guy, so my favorite episodes are the ones where you can tell he’s getting a little riled up. The episodes I've listened to multiple times are “Big Man Can’t Shoot,” and his three-part series on higher education.
TO SPRITZ (May): I generally enjoy being outdoors, except that I dislike humidity, heat, sweating, bugs, large crowds, and excess sun exposure. Seriously, because of said issues I’ve resorted to fulfilling my asian stereotypes and will now walk around with an umbrella when there is no drop of rain to be found. To address the bug issue, my husband found this this plant-based, non-greasy bugspray. It’s a welcome change from all the chemically laden bug sprays out there. Save the shipping costs and opt for in-store pickup.
TO SIP (Caroline): A few weeks ago I was in Palm Springs with some ladies, and one of them ordered this drink (hey, Emily!). There does not seem to be an official consensus on the drink’s name, but OH. MY. GOSH. By the end of the week, all the gals were ordering it. It might be the perfect summer drink. Just order “Prosecco, St. Germain, and fruit.” Some places call it “a Hummingbird” and add club soda, but trust me- you ain’t gunna want this watered down. I’ve also made a knock-off version at home with some cheaper elderflower liqueur, sparkling wine, and some frozen berries. It pairs well with peach pie and late nights with friends.