Morocco, Montecito and The Master

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Slim Paley Photo

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The short, but ever so sweet & sultry dose of  heat we enjoyed here in Santa Barbara a week or so ago has fired up my passion for exotic locales…

and searching for images of Carmen Miranda for the previous post only helped seal the deal!

 So,

I’ve secreted away all my cashmere, stored my winter coats, bid a hearty “a bientot” to heavy boots until September &

I’m celebrating the arrival of warmer weather by sharing a recent little Moroccan Soiree at “Le Souk Slim’s”

(What? You’ve never seen a white-washed shingled Souk before? Sheik, Baby- you need to get out more!)

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I’m even going to spoil you for choice by offering two different selections of music to accompany;

.‘Tu As Ma Vie’


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“Rock The Casbah”


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.The Amanjena hotel, an Aman Resort, Morocco

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We  could all just buy these and pretend we’re there :)

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Pottery Barn Lanterns 

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I never think of Morocco without thinking of Yves Saint Laurent and the beautiful, beloved home  he shared there with his long time partner Pierre Berge.

(and the amazing YSL silk caftan floor length coat I found in a vintage shop once that I bought even though it was ten times too big for me-

and you know when a caftan is too big- that’s big) oops- I digress…

St. Laurent’s ashes were scattered in Marrakech in the Majorelle Garden, a place he often visited to find inspiration and refuge.

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Now I can’t wait for the new documentary L’Amour Fou”  (Click here to watch the trailer- it looks fantastique!!)

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“…one day I will join you under the Moroccan palms…” Pierre Berge at St. Laurent’s funeral.


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via Decorative maps.com

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Meanwhile, back in Montecito,  I served this deeelicious old stand-by from Food & Wine Magazine,

accompanied by cous cous and miniature Caesar salads on endive spears (The Romans were friendly with North Africans weren’t they?!) 

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Slim Paley photo (taken from Food & Wine Magazine, August 2008)

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Amanjeni


Paging Paul Bowles for inspiration;

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Definitely a book to be reread

Paul Bowles spent over 55 years of his life in Morocco

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The Amanjeni

 “Bucket Tagine List”?

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....Slim Paley Photo

For the table, I chose my favourite Suzani, which is absolutely gigantic, and folded it in on itself a couple of times.

 All the flowers, lavender and mint are from my garden.

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Our  ridiculously orange roses I’ve renamed “Are Those Real??” popped just in time…

.Slim Paley Photo

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Le Recipe;.

As you can see, I add golden raisins and slivered toasted almonds to the couscous.

If you find your couscous a little on the dry side, you can add a cup or so of Lychee syrup- yum!

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.Slim Paley photo

Nuts, olives, honey with lavender, and lots of citrus and roses help to set the mood…oh ya, and fruity champagne drinks!

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Slim Paley Photo

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Slim Paley Photo

You’ll  probably recall this lavender pudding from just a few posts back  but don’t be a hater, it belonged here :)

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…and don’t forget sweet mint tea for dessert.

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Marrakesh/Marrakech… either way, I want to go!

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If your schedule doesn’t gel with a trip to North Africa, or even a Moroccan inspired evening soon, you may always grab a quick dose of Casbah here;

The Morocco based ; My Marrakesh

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OK, I better go tend to my Sheik now…


couscous!

xx

A Posy of Easter Violets

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Slim Paley Photo

Montecito Wisteria

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I‘m delivering  you a posy of ‘Easter Violets’ a little early as I’m off to NY this weekend to visit Older Son.

So excited!

Looking forward to lots and lots of walking with him so that I may enjoy all the dinner reservations we’ve made completely guilt free!

Yes, that might involve a walk to Brooklyn…I hear you…


Slim Paley photo

A very Eastery bouquet in my living room.  Did you know that tulips continue to grow after you cut them?! As much as a couple of inches! Look how much these ones are sticking out of the arrangement.

Measure yours next time if you don’t believe me-

Now would I make that up?!

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Via Town & Country Magazine

Stephen Russell Gold & Amethyst necklace circa 1850

Helloooo Easter Bunny!

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Slim Paley Photo

I served these pretty Lavender Pudds for a Moroccan themed birthday party last week

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This recipe is super easy, most unusual and positively yummy!

But YOU win the prize if you can find in the text where it says to add the two tablespoons of butter listed in the ingredients.

We split the difference in case the butter was just a mistake by only adding 1 tablespoon instead of two.

We also cheated a wee bit by using two Revolution Earl Grey Lavender tea bags instead of the fresh lavender- I had tons but weren’t sure how strong the flavour would be.

I used the red & blue food colouring as I didn’t have violet and sprinkled a few candied violets over the top.

(Tea available on Amazon and it’s delicious and sooo fragrant, with a touch of bergamot)

Slim Paley photo

Always wrap like you mean it :)

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Dior

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Purple Agate necklace $850 via Boticca.com

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Slim Paley photo

The Wisteria has been positively spectacular this Spring

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The colour of these Nicholas Kirkwood booties leaves me weak.

I’d love to paint a room this shade!

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Slim Paley Photo

Please don’t tell me I’m the only one that sees that happy little dolphin face in the wisteria tree trunk – and no, I’m perfectly sober.

I never drink when I pack…U-Haul would have to be called.

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Sadly, I will just be missing “Savage Beauty”, the Alexander McQueen exhibit at the Met.

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Vogue photo

A perfectly reasonable excuse to return to New York again before July 31st, don’t you agree??

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Slim Paley Photo

Happiness is a bouquet of fresh lilac

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and a Lavendertini :)

(from a previous Slim Paley post)

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Portrait of Alice Perry Grew by Lilla Cabot Perry

Poor thing- looks like she could have used a Lavendertini

Ps. I say we bring back fresh corsages- how divinely romantic!

In another life I would make fresh ones myself and sell them on Etsy…maybe that’s what I will do when I grow up!

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OK, I had better get back to my packing…

Have a spot of lavender tea on me, and Wishing Everyone a very Joyous Easter Weekend!

xx


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