Prawn Saganaki

Post-vacation depression is: 

The. Worst.

Mostly because, Sweetheart, everyday life is so far from sunshine, beaches and rosé all day – especially if you live in the SF Bay Area. But, more on that later.

I recently returned from two weeks in Greece where I adventured to different parts of the islands of Mykonos and Santorini on the back of an ATV, slept in a lot, read novels on the beach, and frolicked in the glorious sunshine and Agean Sea.  Despite the fact that Greek cuisine is absolutely delicious, my travel partner and I actually skipped a lot of meals to happily prioritize the aforementioned.  But on one of the few days we totally over-ate, we tried this traditional Greek dish that we saw everyone ordering at the restaurant – Argo – we’d been recommended to try during our exploration of Fira.

 It was Prawn Saganaki.

The name totally sounds like a Japanese cartoon that features a ninja shrimp as the main protagonist, amiright?  In any case, we became pretty obsessed.  And after the first bite, as expected, my Huckleberry mind was already picking apart how I could create this Greek magic wizardry.  Like, was it only good because we were deluded from drunk-on-vacation vibes with no expectations?

Prawn Saganaki

Spoiler:

It’s completely brilliant in real, non-vacation, life too!

Prawns with Heads

Huckleberry Kim’s Prawn Saganaki

Serves 3ish.

Ingredients:

Please note: I’m one of those people who cooks by feelies and to taste (and doesn’t usually measure things much); so most of the following measurements are estimates based upon how much I think I used.  Next time I make this dish, I might update this – but the following should be close! 

  • 6 large full-bodied prawns, and by that I mean with heads intact to their tails!

↑ The heads/bodies are super important for a truly prawny base – learnt from my time in Barcelona learning how to make paella ↑ ).

  • 6 medium-large shrimps

↑ Honestly, I think the supplemental shrimp can be of any size you’d like. I like to play with the juxtaposition of textures and things in meals because I’m a mad scientist, but you do you, Babe.  )

  • 3 cloves of garlic – minced
  • Half of an onion – chopped
  • 1 tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons of coconut oil
  • 4 tomatoes – chopped
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste (optional)
  • 1 cup of Greek feta
  • 3 tablespoons of honey
  • 3 tablespoons of granulated sugar
  • A dash of cayenne pepper (optional, but do it like Guy Fieri would)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Parsley – chopped (optional, for garnish)

Directions:

  1. Heat up a skillet on medium-heat with your EVOO and add the chopped onions – cook until softened
  2. Add coconut oil and garlic – cook all until nicely browned
  3. *IMPORTANT: Peel the tails of the large prawns and squeeze their heads over the pan (some weird prawn brains will ooze into the pan) – reserve the prawns – still intact – for later
  4. Add tomatoes and optional tomato paste
  5. Cook down for 10-15 minutes – or until the garlic, onions, and tomatoes embrace each other like best friends
  6.  Add the large prawns and cook until less translucent – maybe 3 minutes
  7. Add the other shrimps
  8. Add in the honey, sugar, and cayenne – stir well
  9. Very gradually add in the feta while keeping the Saganaki moving around the pan – it will slowly melt to combine with the other ingredients #bffs
  10. Add salt and pepper to taste
  11. Optionally, garnish with chopped parsley 🙂

Served with some toasted brioche for mopping up all the goodness; though this would pair well with anything! I might try doing a pasta next time. Let me know what you think!

*But, TK, why is Step #3 so important? 

Because, Sweetheart, prawns keep all of their deepest secrets in their heads just like we do. 💔  That’s where the magic is.  That’s where the truth is. And that’s the only way to get to the truth. Smoosh. Ask Paul Pierce.

Have you ever made a dish you tried for the first time on a trip?  How did it work out?!

xo,

Huckleberry Kim

S O N G  O F  T H E  M O M E N T

. . . Parked in your lot, can I get some validation? . . .

Minimalist Packing for the Fashion Girl

Alright, for context,

currently, I am sipping a cup of coffee while wearing embossed-leather platform booties – with track soles, leather leggings – high-waisted, a cashmere poncho – fringed, a faux fur stole, translucent large-framed glasses and a matte lip colour – “Spice”.  It’s Thursday.  When I got dressed this morning, I was feeling very real Jon Snow meets Jenna Lyons meets Huckleberry Kim vibes, and this is what I came up with.

Fashion is one of my favorite art forms; I think of it, all at once, from a fine art, an applied art, and a very technical design perspective – fashion is the triple threat.  I work in the fashion-tech space where it is not uncommon for me to have to “test” our new product enhancements by shopping #iHaveToitsMyJob.  So, one might think that when traveling, I’d be that girl with the extra large suitcase just for shoes and two more valises for everything else.  I’m simply not that girl.  (Not that there’s anything wrong with that if you are!)  I do love to get all dressed up but when traveling my priorities shift exponentially over to my love of new and strange experiences.

I was born this way.

Our minds and bodies work in a certain way, and over the years, I have become very familiar with how this Huckleberry operates (which probably guides a lot of why I’m good a traveling with little).

→ I usually travel alone.

→ I usually leave little time for planning, as I thrive off of spontaneity and swoon for the romanticism of a nomadic life.

→ I don’t have the much upper-body strength; so, if I pick up the bag(s) I intend to travel with and cannot envision carrying them by myself…on at least a mile walk, with the possibility of getting lost, I will go back and edit things out.

everlane_weekender

On my last lengthier trip away, I spent 3 weeks traveling through Europe across a handful of different countries; I brought my Everlane weekender bag and my guitar. Whether it’s a 3-day trip to New York for Fashion Week or a 3-week vacation abroad, I use the same few criteria when deciding what to pack.  Trust & believe: a little bit of thought about these things goes a long way!

Tips for Minimalist Packing.

  • Realize you don’t really need 3 outfit changes for every single day.  Certainly, a few extra outfits don’t hurt,  but c’mon, go enjoy, explore and adventure!  Happiness is the best look you can ever wear anyway!
  • Pack apparel items that can be dressed up or down or day to night.  This is an important one for me since I like to travel more spontaneously with fewer plans. I feel like really great adventures and things happen when you just let them in the moment!  A neutral dress paired with different shoes or accessories can be worn for a casual day out to dinner or a night out partying with all the babes.
  • Even if you’re like me and don’t plan every detail of your trips, you should still have a sense for the proportion of time you’ll spend with different themes of activities.  For example, if you’re going on a backpacking trip in South America for 2 weeks during which you intend to do more active adventuring and a smaller proportion of chilling at the beach, you should probably prioritize items for those activities – maybe rather than adding another cute pair of sandals for a walk on the beach, opt for the extra pair of shoes you can walk a long distance in if your hiking shoes are drying out from the three days you’ll spend chasing waterfalls.  Some themes I like to bucket senses of time into: active-adventure, water-adventures, namaste-active, chill-party, rage-party, fancy-party, sightsee-tourism, lurk-chill, beach-chill…you get the idea.
  • This is so nerdy and a total over-share, but sometimes I’ll make a spreadsheet. I’ll create columns with categories – like Apparel, Footwear, Personal/Beauty, Miscellaneous – to force myself to reasonably visualize what I really want/need to bring.  Believe me, when you’re planning a 4 day trip to New York for work and you see yourself listing out 7 pairs of shoes, you’ll probably think twice!  Be real.  Even if you bring 3, you’ll spend most of your time in 1 or 2.
  • It helps to think about things in the sense of a whole outfit as well. Rather than thinking, I need 5 shirts for this  trip, think: I need 5 outfits for this trip. Five outfits doesn’t necessarily mean 5 of a specific garment type.
  • Remember things happen, you might lose your luggage or spill a bottle of wine on all the things; but you can almost always pick up things at your destinations.  An oversized “I heart Belarus” tee-shirt tucked into your go-to jeans might be super comfortable and cute for an impromptu lurk-chill day.

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I’m heading to Greece in a few days for an almost 2 week stint – Athens and probably Mykonos and Santorini.  Will be traveling with my boyfriend – who, I’m so glad, has similar sensibilities as I do of spontaneous adventuring, partying, and chilling. I’ll probably pack a few hours before I have to head to the airport, but given that it’s summertime, I’ll probably go into packing with the following things bubbling around in my mind:

  • It’s going to be hot → deprioritization of pants.
  • A little bit of all the things → 3 shoe pairs.
  • I want to bring a hat and my guitar.
  • Need to find my passport.

Adventure on, babes.

xx,

Huckleberry Kim

jam of the day:

DIY Marble Top Table

  1. I recently moved into a new place and have been searching for the #allTheThings and was absolutely thrilled when I found the Eames DCMs in Navy (similar) pictured below.  These babes have been my dream dining chairs for sometime so I was happy to commit to them without yet having a table in mind… plus, I’ve always been a good problem-solver.  Had. To.

2. Fast-forward 2 weeks later: I meet this older woman who was selling this 250 pound thick slab of marble that was brought from Italy in 1940 to San Francisco, where it was used to make dough in a small pizzeria on Columbus.  No idea how to make a table base, but amazing story & immaculate piece of marble.  Had. To. 

3. Fast-forward 1 week later: researching the interwebs on table-making.  Because I am going for a rustic-modern-minimalist vibe in the new spot, I wanted table legs that would not distract too much from the marble nor the chairs.  I opted for these 3-rod hairpins I found from this Denver-based maker.  Had. To.

4. Fast-forward to this past Sunday: The parts of this dining set have been strewn about my living quarters for weeks, and I’m fed up.  I spend a few hours at Home Depot collecting parts.  Then many more hours of trial and error, stripped screws, laughs, tears, heavy breathing, heavy lifting, pizza breaks… and NOW I HAVE A NOT-VERY-STURDY-BUT-STANDING TABLE!

She’ll probably need some more screws and reinforcement, but SHE STOOD THROUGH THE NIGHT! Hooray!

hello, huckleberry table.

marble table

This big piece of compressed something board (the only one I could lift by myself in the store) that would serve as the layer underneath the marble slab:

Home Depot

Laying out ideas for the frame:

Frame

Metal bracket placement (idea credit  my wonderful bf):

Bracket

Quick tip: I broke one of my drill bits as I’m new to this whole operation; so if you’re a newbie, I’d suggest 1) making sure you lock your bits in tight & 2) cleaning them off in between pilot holes!

drilling

Here I am unscrewing a stripped screw using pliers. Truth: I have blisters on my fingers from this taxing challenge 🙁 I learned the hard way that in order to effectively get these screws driven through all the hardwood, I would need to use all of my body weight to push the nail in.  Learnt too late. 

Stripped Screws

Drilling

Song of the moment:

xx, Huckleberry Kim

Nutella & Bourbon Babka

Remember when Jerry & Elaine had to get the “lesser babka” – the cinnamon one – because the last, greater babka – the chocolate one – was sold right in front of them?

It was the first thing I thought of when this Sandwich-inspired Babka article was recently published in a Lucky Peach newsletter. I thought to myself: what would be the ultimate babka?  It would have to pair perfectly with a nice cup of coffee or black tea, enjoyed while sitting in a comfy chair, with some softly lulling melody that wouldn’t require too much attention.  I’d need time to simmer on this…

Upon passing through the nut-butter aisle of my local market, the bold sans-serifed: n u t e l l a logo jumped out at me #goodmarketingguys.  And on the fourth day, the nutella and bourbon babka with blood-orange glaze was born.  Let me know what you think of the recipe!

INGREDIENTS

The babka:

  • 5 cups of all-purpose flour
  • 1 package of instant yeast
  • 1 cup warm water
  • 1 tablespoon sea salt
  • 1/4 cup of granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup of canola oil
  • 3 eggs
  • zest of 1 blood orange
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

The filling:

  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 3/4 cup dark or bittersweet chocolate
  • 1/2 cup nutella
  • 1/3 cup cocoa powder
  • 2 tablespoons powdered sugar

The glaze:

  • Juice of 1 blood orange (+ enough water to make 1/2 cup of liquid)
  • 5 tablespoons granulated sugar

DIRECTIONS

  • Combine 1 cup of the flour (reserve 4 cups) with yeast and warm water; cover with a towel and let rise for 30-40 minutes (it should look all bubbly).
  • Add salt, sugar, oil, eggs, orange zest, and vanilla and stir until combined; then add the remaining flour slowly and mix.  Gently knead the dough on a floured work surface until it becomes smooth and then let it sit in a bowl until it has risen (about 2x in size) for at least one hour
  • While you’re waiting for your dough to rise, you can start making the filling.  In a small saucepan on low heat, melt butter, chocolate, and nutella together until smooth.  Slowly add in the cocoa powder and powdered sugar and stir until smooth.
  • Once the dough has risen, punch it down on a floured work surface and divide into 2 equal parts.  Roll each piece out into a long rectangular shape and place on a piece of parchment paper, then spread filling over the top of each.  Stack the pieces and roll it into a tight coil.  To keep it together, wrap in the parchment paper and use a piece of tape to keep it securely coiled.  Refrigerate overnight (or keep in freezer for 30 minutes if you’re in a crunch).
  • After chilling, cut the log lengthwise, and with the cut sides up twist the 2 pieces together.
  • Place on a parchment lined pan and bake at 375°F for 25-30 minutes.
  • While the babka bakes, you can make the blood orange glaze! In a small saucepan, add the orange juice and sugar and stir until the sugar dissolves and thickens slightly.
  • Remove babka from oven and brush some glaze over it and let them cool for a bit before serving!

blood orange zest:

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combining zest, eggs, sugar, oil, vanilla into the flour + yeast mixture:

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pretty blood oranges:

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blood orange glaze in the making:

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pre-risen dough ball:

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risen dough after about 90 minutes:

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rolling out the babka dough:

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baked in a cast iron pan:

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baked in a loaf pan:

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bon appetit my lovelies!

xx, huckleberry kim

A Huckleberry Haircut

The times they are a-changin’ y’all.  I’m probably going to have to start styling my own hair again for the next few years. FUN FACT: I used to cut all the boys & girls hairs in my university dormitory freshman year.  I was compensated with wine (of higher value to college freshman than any other currency).  I might also reopen the Huckleberry Hair Salon…bring wine. ;P

Enjoy!

Huckleberry Kim

Sunset Sunset

Whether we wake up at dawn to climb up to a rooftop in Chelsea, climb over fences into the East River, or climb up steep San Francisco hills, Mitch and I have made some epic sunrise shoots happen over the last few years.  A few weeks ago, we were back on the west coast again, and this time we decided to take on the sunset in San Francisco’s Sunset district to catch our wonderful star disappearing into the Pacific.  I’m usually still working while the sun goes down, so it was an extra special treat to get to do this! Checkout some fave selects, outfit details, and a song of the moment below <3

Photography by Mitch Blummer

pinkAF

what i wore:

| off the shoulder sweater – sold out (similar) | topshop jeans | loeffler randall sneakers – sold out (similar) |

chunky grey off the shoulder sweaters:

High-top slip ons:

Distressed boyfriend jeans:

song of the moment:

Feels, Kiiara (+ a favorite remix)

| I have way too many feels, way too much emotion | I don’t even know what’s real |

xx,

Huckleberry Kim

A Healdsburg Weekend Itinerary

One of my best friends, S of Fork & 5th, decided that she wanted to escape frigid NYC and spend last weekend in wine country prior to our annual bonding week in SF for work.  We decided to do the girls weekend Healdsburg rather than Sonoma or Napa this trip to give ourselves the opportunity to explore a new area a bit further northwest of our usual wine country haunts, and IT WAS PHENOMENAL.

We stayed at an adorable Airbnb in Glen Ellen given that we’d planned to stop over at Ad Hoc in Yountville, where the daily-changing menu included a fried burrata we had to try.

Our itinerary included some lovely new wineries including Jordan Winery located on 58,000 beautiful acres and Lambert Bridge winery, which was amazingly pet-friendly for Baloo (my 3 month old puppy).

The tasting at Jordan Winery had lovely food pairings with their Burgundy style Cabernet & Chardonnay.

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Walking around the Jordan estate is a must. The main building pictured below is where the end-to-end winemaking happens – grapes come in, bottles come out.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

what i wore:
| cos cape (similar) | goorin hat (now on sale) | everlane chelsea boots | citizen of humanity jeans |
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The lovely garden on the Jordan estate is where their kitchen sources many fresh ingredients for their pairings and parties.
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This adorable dream-house nestled away atop a hill overlooking the Lambert Bridge Winery. Look. At. That. Wrap-Around. Porch. #slay
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Wine weekend squad at Lambert Bridge (minus the boys).
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Ever been to Healdsburg? Have any other suggestions for where to go?
xx, Huckleberry Kim
…hold on to everyone good…