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    goop mag #4

    There's a little something for (almost) everyone in this week's mag. We've done a mini 'GO' on my mother's hometown, Philadelphia, through the eyes of the owners of Vedge, the restaurant that keeps the food buzz happening in Philly. We approached interior designer Abigail Ahern who changes the feel of a room with her knack for artful arrangements. This is something I have never had a grasp of and it was cool to understand how she thinks. Also, metabolism boosting from my favorite yoga girl, Elena Brower and some other bits. Oh, and check out our beautiful exclusive prints from London artist Natasha Law.

    Love,

    gp

    P.S. Please send me pictures of your outfits without jeans. We are halfway through our challenge and need inspiration!

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    Philly for Foodies

    Heralded as one of the country’s best vegan restaurants (and restaurants period), Vedge is bringing some serious culinary clout to the city of brotherly love. Today we speak to the chefs/owners (also husband and wife) Kate Jacoby and Richard Landau about their much-talked about restaurant, get their insider foodie guide to Philly and preview a recipe from their upcoming cookbook.

    Q&A with Kate & Richard of Vedge

    Q: Rather than being a really great vegan restaurant, it seems Vedge has succeeded in being a really great restaurant that happens to be vegan. Was this part of the plan?

    A: Yes, thanks. We wanted to be inclusive, not exclusive. So, we focus on the food (vegetables) and not the diet (vegan). Everyone, or nearly everyone, eats vegetables. People know they should eat more of them, and people are fascinated by all the cool heirloom things showing up at farmers' markets and in their CSAs (community-supported agriculture, meaning a veggie box scheme that comes directly from the farm to the customer). We've been able to reach a really wide audience, and it's great. Our forthcoming cookbook takes the same approach.

    Q: Many vegan/vegetarian restaurants tend to shy away from cocktails. How does your bar fit into the restaurant's ethos?

    A: I understand many people think that people are vegan and veg for health reasons and that those folks might not drink. But I love wine (and cocktails and beer) because I love dining, and I see it as an integral part of the dining experience. Our wines are "natural" wines from small producers, our beers are also smaller, craft brews, and our cocktails are approached the same way we think about food - fresh and made from scratch.

    Q: What's your favorite dish on the menu right now?

    A: I always say the roasted maitake mushroom with smoked leek remoulade and a celery root fritter. But on any given night, it's something from our "Dirt List" (an ever changing menu of daily creations that features new stuff just-in from local farms). Last night, I oogled over a chilled asparagus soup with toasted almonds and mustard oil and some marinated black kale served with fresh Hawaiian (not local, I know) hearts of palm and cherry tomatoes. Green on green is gorgeous!

    Q: What advice would you give to home cooks looking to get more vegetables into their diet?

    A: Don't be intimidated by something you've never prepared before, and don't be boxed in by how you experienced vegetables as a kid and in many restaurants recently. Asparagus doesn't need to have an egg cracked on top of it, and beets don't have to be served with goats cheese and candied nuts. Find some inspiration online or in a good cookbook and then seek out the freshest veggies you can find. Learn what takes well to salting and pickling, what needs a quick blanch, and what does great with a high temp roasting. Don't think of veggies as afterthoughts and side dishes. Put extra effort into them and let them shine!

    Philly’s Finest

    We ask Kate and Richard to let us in on their favorite Philly spots:

    Specialty Shop

    "There are plenty of fun specialty shops in Philly, for certain types of food or specific ingredients and kitchen gear. We love H-Mart - a small chain of Asian supermarkets. Head up to Cheltenham Avenue, on the northern border of the city, and you'll be rewarded by an amazing supermarket whose entryway is lined with tons of diverse little shops a la Seoul. Ride the escalator up a flight, and you're smack in the middle of the most exciting food court in Philly. Korean bbq, Dol Sot Bi Bim Bap and tons of banchan, ramen bowls, sushi, Vietnamese summer rolls - you get the picture. Lots of choices, all beautifully and authentically prepared."

    "There's also a small Japanese market in Narberth, a small town just West of Philly, called Maido. Order some food, do some shopping, then grab a seat at the counter and enjoy an expertly made onigiri."

    Date Night Restaurant

    Top: Vetri. Left: Fried cauliflower at Israeli restaurant Zahav. Right: Simply roasted organic Amish chicken at Vernick.

    "Definitely a hard question in this town. We love the Vetri restaurants - from the celebration tasting menu at Vetri to the pizza and antipasto at Osteria to the great beer selection and graffiti art at Alla Spina. Zahav is iconic in Philly for good reason. Vernick is doing some really great food and the new-ish Chef at Fork is fantastic."

    Kid-friendly Restaurant

    Pizza Margehrita di Bufala, Nomad.

    "Our family-friendly pick would be Nomad Pizza. It's the best pizza in the city (and beyond?), and the vibe is really laid back and relaxed."

    Casual Lunch (hoagie shop, food cart, stand, etc.)

    "Hard call. Wanna say the Jamaican Food trucks up on Callowhill, but we'll go with Viet Tofu on Washington Avenue. It's a little Vietnamese grocery shop that has quick stuff to grab, including tasty tofu bahn mi."

    Brunch

    "Not really brunchers, but people rave about Honey's Sit and Eat - up in Northern Liberties and now with a location on South Street. They are known for their tofu scramble :)"

    Café

    Manual drip coffee at Ultimo.

    "Ultimo. But also have to mention Grind Core because it's a cool, vegan café. Both in South Philly."

    Cultural Activity

    "The Barnes is gorgeous and has all kinds of activities, including stuff for kids."

    "The Mütter Museum (pronounced "mooter") is fascinating if you like to see weird body parts in jars."

    In the summer, Philly has some really cool outdoor places to hang out:

    "Race Street Pier is a new park that is great in the summer and Franklin Square is great for families - complete with a Philly-themed mini golf course."

    "Also, the Schuylkill River Trail is a great place for a run. You run past the Art Museum and down Kelly drive past Boat House Row - it's gorgeous."

    Night Market.

    "Lastly, if you plan in advance, you can catch up with the next Night Market - a band of roving food trucks that meet up in different areas of the city. It's sponsored by the Food Trust, and it's a great way to sample the city's best street food."

    Bar

    The Franklin Bar.

    "We can't not say The Franklin. But since everyone already knows about how awesome that shrine of cocktail-dom is, try Emmanuelle in Northern Liberties for cocktails and the new kid on the block Strangelove's for beer, in Washington Square West."

    Design Shop

    "Angela Heithecker has a shop in Chestnut Hill called HobNob. She focuses on interior design, and she helped us with the design at Vedge, including turning us on to Philly-made Galbraith & Paul wallpaper."

    Clothing Store

    Window display at Third Street Habitat.

    "For clothes, there are tons of cute shops in Old City, including Third Street Habit. And if you're looking for cool crafts and gifts, you must visit Nice Things Handmade in South Philly - it's a quirky collection of a million things you didn't know you needed but could not continue to live without."

    Anything else you love...

    "We also love the Franklin Fountain (yes, I know it's all about Benjamin Franklin here, right?) It's an adorably themed old-time ice cream shop, complete with vintage candy and sodas. And they have vegan ice cream!"

    Broccoli Rabe Philly Style

    A sneak preview at a recipe from Kate and Richard’s upcoming cookbook, Vedge:

    "With its green awnings, mural art, and scent of gravy in the air, Philly’s famous Italian Market is practically unchanged since it appeared in the original Rocky movie back in the seventies. Stroll down 9th Street, and you’re bound to find my favorite traditional Italian greens, broccoli rabe. Not the easiest vegetable to work with, it can quickly become a bitter mess if not prepared properly. The key is blanching first and draining all excess water, then knowing when to stop cooking - when it’s just one shade darker than it was just after blanching. In addition, broccoli rabe must be really fresh. If it’s started to wilt, move on to another green. In this recipe, I’m recommending some other classic South Philly flavors: dried porcini and roasted peppers. If you live near Philadelphia, try to get an authentic Amoroso hoagie roll (what the cheesesteaks are served on). Alternatively, this dish can be served as an elegant antipasto with olives."

    PREP TIME: 15 MINUTES
    COOK TIME: 20 MINUTES

    ingredients
    serves 2-4

    • 4 red bell peppers
    • 3 tablespoons olive oil
    • 2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
    • 1 ¼ teaspoons salt
    • 1 ¼ teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
    • 2 bunches broccoli rabe, bottom 3 inches of stems removed, leaves and remaining stems chopped into 1-inch pieces
    • 2 tablespoons minced garlic
    • 1 tablespoon porcini powder
    • ½ cup vegan mayo
    • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
    • Sliced bread, toasted or grilled (optional)

    preparation

    1. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over heat high and prepare an ice bath.

    2. Rub a sheet pan lightly with olive oil. Put the peppers on the pan and roast until they collapse, 12 to 15 minutes. Remove the peppers from the oven and set aside until cool to the touch. Peel off the skins, cut the peppers in half, and remove the seeds and stems. Then slice the peppers into thin strips and toss in a small bowl with 1 tablespoon of the oil, the balsamic vinegar, ½ teaspoon of the salt, and ½ teaspoon of the pepper. Set aside.

    3. Blanch the broccoli rabe in the salted boiling water for 4 minutes. Reserve 2 tablespoons of the cooking water, then drain the broccoli rabe and shock in the ice bath.

    4. Heat the remaining 2 tablespoons oil in a large sauté pan over high heat. When it begins to ripple, add the garlic and allow it to brown for about 1 minute. Add the broccoli rabe, ½ teaspoon of the salt, and ½ teaspoon of the pepper. Cook, stirring often, until the broccoli rabe wilts and turns a slightly darker shade of green, about 5 to 7 minutes, then remove the pan from the heat.

    5. Meanwhile, whisk the porcini powder with the reserved 2 tablespoons cooking water in a small bowl. Add the vegan mayo, mustard, and remaining ¼ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper and whisk until creamy.

    6. If desired, spread the cream on the bread and top with the broccoli rabe and peppers. Or, if serving the broccoli rabe and peppers as an antipasto, offer the cream on the side.

    Recipe from Vedge: 100 Plates Large and Small That Redefine Vegetable Cooking, copyright © Rich Landau and Kate Jacoby, 2013. Reprinted by permission of the publisher, The Experiment. Available wherever books are sold in July 2013.

    Moody Songs for a Gloomy June

    Heavenfaced
    by The National

    Song for Zula
    by Phosphorescent

    Open Eye Signal
    by Jon Hopkins

    Vignettes and Displays at Home

    We went to visit interior designer Abigail Ahern at home to learn how to create displays of our favorite art and objects.

    Abigail’s vignettes are a mix of art, quirky flea market finds, ceramics, plants (some fake, some real) all layered into a composition that has plenty of depth and keeps the eye moving. There's an art to achieving an eclectic look - here’s a step-by-step guide from two of Abigail’s displays:

    The wall vignette

    Base your vignette around one central piece (in this case the blue painting from a gallery in LA). All you’ll need is a shelf (most of Abigail’s are from IKEA). Limit your color palette to about 3 colors (here it's turquoise blue, bright red and ochre) and bring in objects that loosely fit into that color scheme.

    1.The red lamp on the left echoes the reds in the painting behind it, while the foliage adds depth.

    2.Add a few more pictures and paintings of different shapes and sizes to the background.

    3. The blue painting she's inserting here mimics the blue in the painting above.

    The idea, using color and a variety of shapes and sizes, is to make the eye zig-zag up and down so it doesn’t gravitate toward one sole focal point.

    Now, the layering begins. Abigail isn’t afraid to partially cover the objects in the background with a few in the foreground like this fun blue vase and quirky dog lamp. This way, not only is your eye moving up and down, it’s also switching between the foreground and the background.

    Bring in a few "neutrals" to the foreground – a few cuttings from your garden placed in small glass vases.

    In the end, you have a vignette that catches the eye and keeps your attention through layers of depth and a mix of objects that you wouldn’t normally associate with one another.

    The quick coffee table display

    Abigail uses round coffee tables to soften all the angles in a room. This is an African drum that she uses as a table.

    Start by adding structure by placing two neat stacks of books in an L shape around a small vase of flowers.

    You don’t need very much to create a visually interesting display - colorful books, a small vase with a casual arrangement in it, and a few candles do the trick here.

    Nothing is centered, not even the flowers. The candles, placed at different heights make the eye move up and down through the display.

    The Food Program

    My business partner Tracy Anderson’s Food Program has gone national. Jumpstart your spring/summer regimen by signing up here.

    Metabolism Boosting Yoga

    Elena Brower, co-owner of Virayoga, one of the best yoga studios in NYC, shows us a simple metabolism boosting series.

    The Sequence

    "This sequence combines Kundalini yoga with some Hatha postures to warm us up and boost our metabolism. The Kundalini postures were compiled with guidance from my teacher Hari Kaur Khalsa."

    Opening Pose

    "A nice way to begin is to acknowledge the creative consciousness that connects us all. Simply place hands in prayer in front of your heart and connect to your breathing for a few breaths."

    Breathing Meditation

    "Set a timer for 3 minutes. Bring your prayer hands up to your forehead, and place your thumbs on your third eye point, in the middle of your forehead. Breathe slowly and deeply. This meditation can help to strengthen metabolism (as well as help control high blood pressure). It works the glandular system (which regulates bodily activities such as metabolism through hormones), stimulating and balancing the pituitary and pineal glands, considered the master glands of the body."

    Move

    "Set a timer for 5-10 minutes - marching, running, jumping in place, jumping jacks, dancing, etc., get your blood moving and sweat a bit. When you start to sweat you've awoken your glandular system, and therefore, boosted your metabolism."

    "The following 2A-2D is a sub-sequence of Hatha yoga postures intended to raise your heart rate and keep you warm. Nice to do a few times a week:"

    Side Stretch, 2A

    "A wonderful way to open and release your organs. Take a few breaths on each side. Be sure to root both feet evenly on the ground and breathe into both lungs as you open."

    Chair Pose Twist, 2B

    "A great cleanse and recalibration. From standing, bend your knees, place your hands into prayer and twist your right elbow onto your outer left thigh. Keep your knees even. Take a few deep breaths on each side."

    Downward Facing Dog, 2C

    "From standing, place your hands on the front of your mat and step back to Downward Facing Dog pose. Feet hip-width apart and parallel, hands shoulder-width, fingers long and strong. Reach your seat high to stretch your spine long, root deeply down through your hands and the balls of your feet. Breathe deeply, 5-10 breaths."

    Mountain Climbers, 2D

    "From Downward Facing Dog, shift your shoulders forward into Plank pose and bring one knee to your nose. Jump to switch, 9 times, and stay light on your feet. Take another stretch in Downward Facing Dog."

    Camel Pose

    Camel can be used to adjust the heat in the body, restore glandular health and aid weight loss by stimulating your metabolism. Set the timer for 1-3 minutes to begin; work your way slowly and gradually up to 11 minutes. Come down onto your knees and sit on your heels, reach back, hold your ankles and arch your body upward, keeping your knees grounded and your thighs back. Lengthen your tail down, allow your heart to lift, and let your head drop back if comfortable.

    Rock Pose

    "Set the timer for 3-11 minutes. Sit on your heels with your hands on your knees. Keep your spine straigh and your neck relaxed; breathe deeply."

    Child's Pose

    "Set the timer for 3-11 minutes. From Rock Pose, lean forward until your head rests on the floor in front of your knees. Let your arms and hands relax next to your legs with your palms up. Breathe deeply and relax. It might help or feel great to have a little someone sit on your spine carefully (!), but it's wonderful on your own too."

    "Upon finishing, take a moment of gratitude and recognition."

    *Check with your doctor before trying any new exercise routine at home.

    Photographs by Chloe Crespi

    The Art of Attention

    Don’t miss Elena’s book, The Art of Attention for anyone looking to deepen their Yoga practice. It's beautifully photographed and designed, see a couple of spreads excerpted from the book below:

    Click to see the full image and exercise.

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