24 Nov 2023

Mimi Takes Five - #276

ONE // Croissants
It all started with a dream. I literally dreamed I was making croissants. Naturally, my awake self was all "yeah, let's make croissants!" I spoke to my colleague who successfully made them before and got the recipe from him. This seven-page recipe has got to be the longest one I've ever seen... I read it through and underlined important bits. I even watch the accompanying video to prepare. This is most definitely not a straightforward recipe as it's very technical and contains multiple steps spanning a minimum of 24 hours. It also involves lots of measuring and geometry. Not only is this recipe challenging, to say the least, I had a few setbacks along the way that really tested by patience and had me seriously questioning my skills. 

I'll spare you the gory details, but I had to make the dough twice. It did not rise at all the first time and the second time was a bit better, but still not great. Lesson: use fresh yeast and activate before adding to dry ingredients. Because my dough was dense, rolling it was a real workout, and there's a lot of rolling involved. My arms still hurt... When I made it to the baking part, I put my croissants on my baking sheets, thinking they would bake evenly. The small issue here is that I should have baked them on four-sided baking sheets. Early on in the baking process, the butter was oozing out and dripping in the bottom of my oven. It didn't take long for the butter to start burning and the oven smoking. I quickly turned on the hood fan and opened all the windows to try and air out the kitchen (which was quickly getting smoky) and avoid setting off the smoke alarms. I had come so far and was determined to not ruin my croissants, so I decided the best option was to just turn off the oven (to stop the burning butter) and leave the croissants in the oven for the remaining time to avoid opening the oven door. I then stood next to the oven with another baking sheet fanning the smoke for the next 15 minutes. It was chaotic. Once the time was up, I took the butter-pooled baking sheets out of the oven and let everything cool completely. 

They looked golden and crispy on the outside, but when I cut one in half to check, I was devastated to see they were not fully baked... I cleaned out the butter from the oven, put the croissants on a four-sided baking sheet (see, I did learn from my mistake) and popped them in the oven to try and salvage them. It did work to an extent, but they are by no means airy and light. While they might look the part, these croissants are very dense! The flavour is there and toasting them helps, but they are far from perfect. At least now I can say I made croissants from scratch! That statement is true, regardless of the end result, ha ha! I think it will be a long time before I attempt making these again. Making croissants at home is not for the faint of heart, these will test you and push you to the brink. Be warned.

TWO // Printed Scarf
Did I need another printed scarf? No. Did I want this one? Yes. I actually snagged this in the Zara sale last summer and fell in love with its colour palette! It's so unique! I wouldn't have paired burgundy, purple and olive green - but I am loving it. I knew it would be a great fall piece to add to my closet to give outfits a quick zhuzh. I've worn it a few times and it always elevates my look. A great printed scarf is always a welcome accessory to dress up a simple outfit. And if it's in an interesting colour palette, even better. I'll be sure to wear this scarf for years to come.

THREE // Sewing Basket
So I have a sewing machine and desk for it with lots of storage for my sewing supplies. However, I do a lot of little sewing jobs fixing things while watching TV. For that, I had a little plastic case that I totted around when I needed a needle and thread. This case had seen better days and needed to be replaced. Lucky for me, I came across this super cute sewing box at Fabricland. I loved the size, colour and shape of it - plus, it was on sale. I filled it up with my sewing supplies as soon as I brought it home and have used it countless times already. I'm a big fan of fixing clothing when it starts to fall apart, so I'm always sewing buttons, holes and the like. I smile every time I pull out my new sewing basket. This is the type of thing that brings me joy in my thirties and I wouldn't have it any other way!

FOUR // Sweater Vest
Since I rediscovered the joy of wearing sweater vests, they have been one of my go-to layering pieces. When you think about it, they really are an unsung closet MVP. They help you achieve a layered look without the bulkiness of a sweater or cardigan. The fact they are sleeveless makes them easier to layer under blazer, over shirts and even over dresses. I love the look of a layered shirt and sweater, but the bulkiness or just the way your sleeves get all twisted makes it hard to pull off at times. This is a non-issue with sweater vests. I'm amassing a small collection at this point and will probably wear them for years! I got this classic navy trim (the website said it was black, but it really looks more navy to me) and beige sweater vest a size smaller as I wanted it more cropped. I think it looks great over a dress or with high-waisted bottoms as it hits right at my waist. Another great find!

FIVE // Gingerbread Hand Sanitizer Holder
I'm a sucker for cute hand-sanitizer holders. Nothing I like more than decking out my purse in seasonal style, ha ha! I didn't have a very Christmassy hand-sanitizer holder. I got a cute penguin last year, but it's more winter than Christmas, so I was on the lookout for a more festive option this year. Well, Bath & Body Works did not disappoint with this year's selection! While the clear winner for me was the gingerbread mug, I could easily have gotten a few. The snowman is adorable as is the nutcracker and Christmas train. I even like the cat hiding in the scarf! I was sensible and only got one, but that didn't stop me from admiring the other too!

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