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DISCLOSURE

Oh, How Civilized contains ad banners and sometimes uses contextual affiliate links. This means that a small commission may be made if a product is purchased through a link. The commission earned goes toward providing original content for this blog. 

I only write about things and experiences that I genuinely like. Anything gifted is noted with a c/o or courtesy of.

Wednesday
Feb052014

Palais des Thés' Thé des Amants 

Palais des Thés has a special Valentine's Day themed tea set which is perfect for gift giving -- the Thé des Amants.

Three containers of loose tea, plus one container with sugar hearts. The teas that are in the set includes a green tea blend, a black tea blend, and a rooibos blend. I steeped the rooibos for the photo since a red-hued tea seemed the most fitting.

Tea set courtesy of Palais des Thés.

Tuesday
Feb042014

Back at Matsunosuke

Back at Matsunosuke. This time, getting an apple pie. I got the Custard Apple Pie ($6), and Kathy got the Sour Cream Apple Pie ($6). We both got the Hojicha tea ($3.50 for the small). 

The slices of pie are on the small side. The only thing I was wishing for was that they be served warm, instead of slightly chilled from being served directly from the refrigerated case. 

INFO: Matsunosuke | 58 West 8th Street | New York, NY 10011 | 212.529.5888

Monday
Feb032014

Canelé by Céline

Canelé by Céline makes my favorite canelés and financiers in the city. They both topped my Best of 3: Canelés and Best of 3: Financiers lists. So, when I found out that Céline had opened up a shop on the Upper East Side, I had to go for a visit.

The tiny shop is completely adorable! When you walk in, the pastries are on the left, behind the glass, and on the right, a small countertop. There's no seating available, so you can either take it to go, or enjoy your treats standing, using the countertop on the right.

They make canelés fresh every morning and they definitely taste fresh. Perfectly crispy on the outside and soft on the inside. So good!

Aside from canelés, they also have tasty financiers in different flavors. ($4.90 for 3 pieces.)

There are two types of canelés — savory and sweet. The savories are $5.90 for 3 pieces. These have less of a crispy exterior than the sweeter versions.

But I prefer the sweet canelés over the savory ones. ($4.90 for 3 pieces.) I got one of each flavor and I couldn't pick a favorite; they were all equally delicious.

The tea served is from Palais des Thés, which I sipped between canelé bites. 

INFO: Canelé by Céline | 400 East 82nd Street | New York, NY 10028 | 646.678.4124

Thursday
Jan302014

Blue Apron

Last month, I was swamped with work and dinner quickly became deliveries almost every night. I had a hard time carving out time to go grocery shopping, so when my friend Camille offered to give me a free trial of Blue Apron, I immediately said yes. She's ordered from them on and off, as needed, and was able to gift trials. 

Each box contains portioned out raw ingredients to create three meals for two people. A box with ice packs to keep your groceries cold arrives every week, unless you opt out for the week. 

Each recipe is said to take about 35 minutes to prepare, and that was certainly true of this Sautéed Flounder. Clocking in at 35 minutes from start to finish, this recipe made me feel confident I can cook fish and have it turn out tasty. I'll be making this again, on my own in the future.

Delicious and easy!

The Chorizo Tostadas took a little longer to prep and this one took me about 45 minutes to make. I made a slight mistake with this one, by using the red wine vinegar instead of the Champagne vinegar. Turned out fine though.

Ta da! This one was a bit of a mess to eat, but so good. The portion was on the small side, most likely since the chorizo is so rich in calories, and Blue Apron keeps each serving somewhere between 500-700 calories.

Lastly, the Chicken Pot Pie. I was looking forward to this one the most since I really like chicken pot pies. HOWEVER, this one took me two hours to make. Yes, TWO hours. I was starving by the time it was done and I was really disappointed in how it turned out. It wasn't very good at all.

All the components were there, just not the flavors I was looking for. It wasn't thick, but watery, and the crust didn't come out as nicely as a puff pastry would. A better cook may have made this a success, but it didn't work for me.

Overall, I really liked Blue Apron, especially how all the raw ingredients are portioned out for me so there wasn't food wasted. Will I order again? Yup, and already have!

Wednesday
Jan292014

Electric Kettles

1/ Nice and sleek, this electric kettle from Krups Silver Art Collection has a water level indicator window on both sides.
2/ Bugatti Vera Kettle in gloss white with a stainless steel body.
3/ A countertop electric version on an old-fashioned stove top kettle by Cuisinart.
4/ Eva Solo's carafe shaped kettle with a wireless on and off switch.
5/ Bodum's kettle is made of BPA-free plastic and stainless steel. 
6/ This one from Bonavita is my favorite of the bunch since you can set the steeping temperature, and holds the temperature of an hour. Plus, the gooseneck spout allows for precision pour control. There's also a lower priced version with less features. 

Photo Credit: From Linked Sources 

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