This & That: September 10, 2021
Friday September 10, 2021

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Soooo many great new cookbooks, the film being released today that Rotten Tomatoes gave 96%, the new-to-me facial oil I have added to my skincare regimen (and am loving!), the French rain boot that may just take the place of your favorite Hunter wellies, two premieres of television series (one new, one loved), as well as much more.


Best Before: The Evolution and Future of Processed Food by Nicola Temple

After listening to a recent episode of Milk Street Radio and being introduced to author Nicola Temple talk about her book Best Before, I became intrigued by the history she shared and the information she revealed about the breadth of processed foods and which may be okay to keep in our diet, while abstaining from others. Her book was released in 2018 but shares timeless information to be aware of as we plan our weekly menus.

Best Before puts processed food into perspective. It explores how processing methods have evolved in many of the foods that we love in response to big business, consumer demand, health concerns, innovation, political will, waste and even war. Best Before arms readers with the information they need to be rational consumers, capable of making informed decisions about their food.”


Antoni: Let’s Do Dinner by Antoni Porowski

Chef from Queer Eye fame, Antoni Porowski releases a new cookbook on September 14th. “Let’s Do Dinner is an invitation into Antoni’s easy kitchen. Dinner with Antoni means satisfying meals full of clean protein and loads of vegetables, with splurges of carbs and decadence. Simple, yes, but always special. Antoni keeps shopping lists short and steps and pans to a minimum.” 

Cook This Book: Techniques That Teach and Recipes to Repeat by Molly Baz

The bestseller released this past spring, Molly Baz’s Cook This Book “breaks the essentials of cooking down to clear and uncomplicated recipes that deliver big flavor with little effort and a side of education, including dishes like Pastrami Roast Chicken with Schmaltzy Onions and Dill, Chorizo and Chickpea Carbonara, and of course, her signature Cae Sal. But this is not your average cookbook. More than a collection of recipes, Cook This Book teaches you the invaluable superpower of improvisation though visually compelling lessons on such topics as the importance of salt and how to balance flavor, giving you all the tools necessary to make food taste great every time.”

The Crêpe Recipe Book for Beginners (60+ Sweet and Savory Recipes) by Ann Costlow

I made my first crêpe in a handful of months this past Wednesday and was reminded why I love them. Then I found the below recipe was included and with all of the peaches I need to figure out what to do with, guess what I will be making this weekend? ☺️

I only recently began making and enjoying crêpes, and while I have one cookbook that helped me get started, Ann Costlow’s will be one I add to my cookbook library. “Discover crepe kitchen essentials―Learn how to choose the right pans for crepe making, how to work with crepe makers, and how to stock your kitchen with other must-have tools and ingredients; simple ingredients―whip up delectable breakfasts, main courses, and desserts with a crepe recipe book that uses everyday ingredients you can easily find at your local grocery store; and detailed instructions―find step-by-step directions and tutorial photos for creating the perfect, wafer-thin pancake, including variations for vegan, gluten-free, keto, and paleo batters.” Let’s slip away to France shall we, and enjoy crêpes in a variety of ways, each one will no doubt be spectacular based on the contents of this cookbook.

Maman: The Cookbook: All-Day Recipes to Warm Your Heart by Elisa Marshall, Benjamin Sormonte & Lauren Salkeld

Being released on Tuesday (September 14th), the founders of Maman, a café and bakery that opened in Soho (NYC) in 2014, has opened bakeries in Canada and has become a haunt of locals, travelers, celebrities and everyone in between who enjoy the full experience of the senses. Now they have a cookbook.

“Elisa Marshall and Benjamin Sormonte opened maman to fill a void in their hearts. They wanted to create a warm, cozy place for people to come together and savor a freshly baked madeleine or slice of savory quiche with the comfort and familiarity of being in their own living room. This collection of 100 recipes spans bestselling dishes from their locations in New York City, Montreal, and Toronto—like Banana-Lavender Cornmeal Waffles with Vanilla Mascarpone, Cumin Chickpea Salad, and the Nutty Chocolate Chip Cookies made famous by none other than Oprah.” Sounds like a delicious reason to spend even more time in the kitchen.


Language Lessons

Critics have delighted in Natalie Morales directorial debut, a film she also wrote and stars. Mark Duplass co-wrote and also stars in Language Lessons (you may recognize him from Morning Show fame), a film about a Spanish teacher and her student develop an unexpected friendship. Being released today, have a look at the trailer below.

The Lost Leonardo

Having just opened on August 13th, I cannot wait to go and enjoy The Lost Leonardo at a local boutique theater this week. “The Lost Leonardo is the inside story behind the Salvator Mundi, the most expensive painting ever sold at $450 million. From the moment the painting is bought for $1175 at a shady New Orleans auction house, and the restorer discovers masterful Renaissance brushstrokes under the heavy varnish of its cheap restoration, the Salvator Mundi’s fate is determined by an insatiable quest for fame, money and power. As its price soars, so do questions about its authenticity: is this painting really by Leonardo da Vinci?” Have a look at the trailer below and look for it in a theater near you now.

Francophile Find


While I already included Délicieux (Delicious) in last month’s French Week’s This & That, I wanted to remind you that it premiered this week on September 8th. I cannot wait for it to begin streaming (or maybe, if I’m lucky, one of the two small boutique theaters will be showing it soon ☺️). Have a look at the trailer below.

Le Chameau Giverny jersey lined boots

Comparing one high-quality brand to another is unfair, and often the reason such brands stand out is because of their unique qualities. Such is the case with French boot company Le Chameau, but just for parallel sake (and knowing that I love my Hunter wellies), these, in my mind, are the equivalent French rain boot.

I especially love the Giverny name. But what does Giverny refer to? “The Giverny is cut specifically for women, and made for walking in style and comfort over any terrain. A supple, yet strong Chamolux rubber upper with contrasting trim is combined with a hardwearing premium jersey lining for everyday wear”. I am saving up for my first pair, after all, the rain is coming soon! (Many colors are available.)


Levain cookies

In 2014, during a trip to New York City, I made sure to visit a bakery that was receiving quite a bit of buzz. Located on the Upper West Side, and nestled in a quintessential NYC UWS neighborhood, I stepped down the two cement steps, opened the door and was greeted by the comforting scent of warm chocolate chip cookies. Purchasing more than just one, I strolled through Central Park nibbling on one of their classic large cookies full of the perfect bite of crispy edges and warm, gooey inside. That memory remains cemented in my mind.

And while I am little late to the party, if you want to enjoy these cookies wherever you live, you can either find them at a local grocer (click here to see where they are sold – Whole Foods is a frequent partner), or order them as gifts to ship. Bend’s Whole Foods is supposed to carry Levain’s cookies, so I will be making a trip there soon to find out and enjoy something I have not tasted for far too long. ?

Omorovicza Miracle Facial Oil

TSLL readers continue to introduce me to brands I wouldn’t have known about, and am grateful to learn about. I shared recently that I was looking for a new facial oil as the one I had used for a handful of years (from Rodin) was being discontinued. The Hungarian skincare company Omorovicza came highly recommended, especially their Miracle Facial Oil.

Well, after using my last drop of my previous facial oil, I purchased what was recommended from Omorovicza, and am finding it to be as soothing, nourishing and lovely as I had hoped. I have only been using it for about a week, but with the large amount you receive (30 ml), I am confident it will last for at least six months or maybe a bit more, and I will be sharing as a Petit Plaisir in the coming months as I observe how my skin feels after a longer period of time. So far, so very good.


Frankie Drake, Season 4 (the final season)

While released in Canada early this year, finally those of us not in Canada who have been wanting to see how the Frankie Drake Mystery series ends can find out. The ten episodes are now available on Amazon Prime via PBS Masterpiece. I am already through episode #8. I have enjoyed them far too quickly – they are wonderful. Here is the trailer for the season. Enjoy.

Scenes from a Marriage, HBO

Being released this Sunday (12th) on HBO, Jessica Chastain and Oscar Isaac star in a five-episode mini series adapted from “Ingmar Bergman’s classic Swedish series of the same name, Scenes from a Marriage re-examines the dilemmas probed by the original, exploring love, hatred, desire, monogamy, marriage, and divorce through the lens of a contemporary American couple. The limited series mines the full complexity of Jonathan and Mira as individuals who ultimately know their marriage isn’t being torn apart by any one event or flaw, but who themselves are torn between feelings of hate and love.” More than eager to explore this series. Have a look at the trailer below.

Conclusions and beginnings occurred this week, and thus celebrations. The guest bathroom has been completed! A peek is above, and look for the full tour to be shared at the end of September for TOP Tier Members/Subscribers. While it took a bit longer than I had envisioned (even with extensions on my hopes for the time frame), it is done and it is done well. We are now moving on to the primary bathroom, and I hope it will be done before the holidays (I am not sure what to envision if it takes longer, but at least I know it will be done beautifully as my contractor pays close attention to the details).

Adding simple touches and improvements into the house and life routine as Rentrée officially begins here in the states following Labor Day, from a bouquet of mixed gladiolus, updating the fall wardrobe and skincare routine with a couple improved choices, to beginning new traditions – sharing the bounty from the peach trees with my neighborhood, September is beginning well, and with a promised rain storm to visit Friday morning and throughout the day, the smoke will likely clear and a concert at the local amphitheater will be enjoyed with friends later this weekend.

I hope September began well for you also, and as it is the second Saturday in September, that means, a new season of The Simply Luxurious Kitchen cooking show premiere tomorrow (check out the trailer below). Wishing you a wonderful weekend, and thank you for choosing to stop by. Below are articles and posts you might enjoy and a fun video for fans of Ted Lasso. Until tomorrow, bonne journée.

~Inspiration to sprout in your own way! I so enjoyed reading this post from Austin Kleon – What does a seed look like?

~The 8 best places to picnic in Paris [Frenchly]

~A new way to use rosemary from your garden – Rosemary Olive Oil Cake [101 Cookbooks]

~Good news! Willamette Valley wines are now certified by Europe (Willamette Valley is located in the western part of Oregon – known for their pinot noirs)

~A thought provoking read – Why peace has nothing to do with how you feel [Think Less, Grow Rich]

~These pancakes from Brooklyn restaurant Chez Ma Tante [NYT Cooking]

~This week’s house tour takes us to North Carolina – a cottage pairing minimalism with a love for treasured finds. Is it possible? Yep! Take the tour here [House & Garden UK]

~Inspiration and ideas for longevity and healthy life [CNBC]

~Good to know for the next time you visit France! What type of baguette to actually buy in France [French Today]

~If you are enjoying Ted Lasso, you’ll enjoy this conversation between the female stars of the show (the first line from Juno Temple captured my attention immediately). Enjoy.

Catch up and read last week’s This & That: September 3, 2021

More fall capsule wardrobe finds, two films that come critically acclaimed being released today, a much-anticipated novel being released on Tuesday, a book to inspire and teach you how to create the change you seek, step into the kitchen with Kitchen Whisperers, a travel necessity for anyone who wears AirPods, and much more.

~Please note: Affiliate links are present in today’s post and may earn commissions for TSLL. View TSLL’s full Privacy Policy here. | The Simply Luxurious Life

20 thoughts on “This & That: September 10, 2021

  1. Shannon,

    Thank you for so many delightful ideas and things to explore. I especially appreciate the film review for Language Lessons. I plan to retire in Spain and have listened to Spanish podcasts all during COVID on my early morning walks. A virtual “intercambio” or language exchange is my next step, prior to heading to Spain next year to scope my ideal spot (narrowed down to Barcelona or Malaga). The film looks excelente!

    And I can’t wait for the new season of the cooking show!! I saw a recipe for nectarine & lemon verbena jam – maybe an idea you could adapt for your bounteous peach crop.

    Su amiga Amy

    1. Amy, I am so incredibly excited for you and your retirement chapter! That sounds amazing! And thank you for the idea for the jam. Perfect timing as I was going to be staying instead as it is raining beautifully and restoratively outside today just in time to turn my peaches into jam. Adding lemon verbena is a lovely idea I would not have thought of without your comment. Thank you so very much.

      Enjoy the film amd have a fantastic weekend. ????

  2. Lovely post Shannon, thank you ?

    I have had a pair of the le Le Chameau garden clogs for over four years now , and they are both comfortable and practical……I keep them by the door, and wear them when I’m gardening ,a quick rinse under the hose or tap gets them clean in no time. They have a cleated grip sole , so are non slip …….my favourite gardening clogs , and I know that their boots are highly recommended as well.

    Have you come across Nuxe Huile Prodigieuse ?

    It is a beautiful dry oil , which can be used on your face, body and hair , it is very light yet nourishing, and smells divine !
    They make one with flecks of gold in it, as well as the regular one , and I love it !
    As you have just purchased your new oil , you may not want to try another one , but if you get the chance to try it , I think you will love it…..and of course, it’s French too ?

    Your peaches look absolutely wonderful !
    The crepe recipe looks yummy .

    A lightly set peach jam / conserve always reminds me of my first trip to Majorca , back in the 1960’s , when it was served at breakfast in the little family run hotel we stayed at .

    It was my very first holiday abroad , a special experience for so many reasons.

    One of the other things I remember was the delightful lemon verbena scented cleaning fluid that the maids used on the tiled floors , it made our bedroom smell delightful ?

    Have you thought of making a Bellini with your peaches ?
    It’s an Italian recipe , Peach puree / syrup with champagne….or sparkling wine , it’s perhaps more of a summer drink , but delicious ?

    Have a wonderful weekend,

    With best wishes from the UK

    x Anne x

      1. Hi Sarah !
        Have you tried ordering it from John Lewis ?
        I think that Marks and Spencer carry it as well .
        It is a lovely oil , I hope you will enjoy using it , once you have tracked it down ?
        x Anne x

  3. So glad to see you finally got your bubble bath Shannon! I saw your glimpse in Instagram and those tap/faucet fixtures are just beautiful.
    Catching my eye from the post this week – Maman’s cookbook, those Levain cookies – (noted for my next visit to NYC!), Le Chameau boots are on my list for the day my Hunters wear out, and Scenes from a Marriage looks to be a must see!
    I am interested to hear your feedback on the facial oil – I checked out the site here in the uk and it’s sold out which I’m taking to be positive!

    Have a lovely weekend all,

    1. Hi Sarah

      I don’t imagine your Hunter boots will ever wear out.(ha!ha!) but when you do get Le Chameau you’ll be vey pleased. Just to say that the Omorovicza oil is available on net a I haven’t used it but have the Queen of Hungary mist which I love. Have a lovely weekend x

      1. Thank you Kameela!
        Maybe I shall just have to bite the bullet and have 2 pairs of quality wellies… one for garden and one for walking perhaps ..? ?

  4. Good morning, and thank you for the film recommendations, perfect timing as days get shorter. Am also down to last precious droppers of Rodin oil, and will miss it a lot, so thank you for the new idea. When Rodin sent their last emails, they alluded to a Fall collaboration with Jo Malone, so I’m hoping there may possibly be one more bottle in my future? Wishing you a very happy weekend!

  5. Thank you for all the recommendations. Autumn is creeping in and it’s time to make the shift . I am looking forward to the shorter days cozying indoors. Enjoy your peach harvest mine is nearly ready. There are so many things to make with the peaches. Desserts , (peach melba) cakes, ice cream , sorbet, jam, preserved in alcohol . Although most recipes suggest sweet dishes I love a touch of savoury in the form of a chutney to serve alongside my cheese platter. They freeze beautifully to use later in crumbles. Le Chameau is the French equivalent to Hunter and the quality is impeccable. ( I have both). You’ll be pleased with your purchase. Another French label which is of similar quality is L’Aigle. They have all that you need for outdoor pursuits. Looking forward to the cooking series. .Bon weekend xx

  6. Apologies everyone !

    My mistake …… gardening clogs are not le Chameau ones……they are L’Aigle …….and I can highly recommend them .

    I’m so sorry to have confused the two brands……..both are excellent, as Kameela has said in her post .

    Best Wishes from the UK


  7. I’ve never been to a Levain bakery but have made these cookies which my family loves – they claim to be “authentic” recipes. I certainly can’t swear to their authenticity, but they sure are good 🙂 She has a number of flavors on her site –

    Joan V

  8. Thanks again for another delightful This and That!

    My favourites here:
    – Antoni’s cooking book – to immediately enter my wish list for Christmas!;
    – The Crêpe Recipe Book – likewise;
    – film “Language Lessons”.


  9. And a further note, just to say that the sneak pick of your guest bath looks promising… and I hope that you enjoyed your bubble bath! 🙂

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