July 16th, 2009 |
Williams Sonoma is the genius behind this idea (perfect for your next cocktail party!). These small plates have a base rim that fits on top of most wineglasses, allowing your guests to hold their wine and hors d’oeuvres securely in one hand. Sold in a set of 4 for only $19.00!
July 14th, 2009 |
Summer days are full of picnics, bbq’s, and a lot of outdoor entertaining…..sandwiches are the perfect meal for all of the occasions….but are your basic, old sandwiches boring you?! Here are three simple updates from Cooking Light that are sure to put a little pizzazz back into your sandwich!
PESTO – Packed full of health benefits, pesto perks up milder ingredients. Spread a tablespoon on a baguette topped with grilled chicken and tomato. You can also try pairing pesto with frilled fish, such as halibut, and serve it with lettuce on a Kaiser roll.
ROASTED RED PEPPER – Red peppers are naturally sweet, and full of vitamin C. Fill a flour tortilla with lettuce, sliced roasted red peppers, diced garlic, and feta cheese. Roll it up burrito-style.
AVOCADO – Use this heart-healthy ingredient to top a tuna salad sandwich. Try adding sliced radishes, alfalfa sprouts, or sharp cheeses.
July 9th, 2009 |
The best part of summer cooking is that most main dishes can be thrown on the grill! Burgers, ribs, fish…..the main dishes are easy. Spice up your meal with some exciting side dishes from Martha Stewart:
July 6th, 2009 |
S’mores is a summertime favorite – what could be better than a combination of chocolate, marshmallow, and graham crackers?! Although the classic version is one of my ultimate treats…I thought I would find a few new ways to update the classic!
Try a s’mores sundae by combining ice cream with the classic ingredients, a s’mores cookie, or a dark chocolate “grown-up” version.
July 2nd, 2009 |
Everyone loves a caprese salad! What’s not to like – a little tomato, fresh mozzarella, a few basil leaves, some olive oil and balsamic vinegar – perfect ingredients all stacked up into one salad. But what if you don’t want to stack them up?
Try freshening up your presentation with this idea:
Take a whole tomato and cut slices into it (about 1/4″ thick) without cutting all the way thru the other side. Insert a slice of fresh mozzarella cheese and a basil leaf in between each slice. Once the tomato is stuffed (it should “fan” out a bit) drizzle olive oil and balsamic vinegar over the top. Drizzle it with your favorite sea salt – and voila! An update to everyone’s favorite caprese salad!
Image via George Dolese
July 1st, 2009 |
2 envelopes (1/4 ounce each) unflavored gelatin
2 cups white grape juice
1/2 cup sugar
5 1/2 to 6 cups (about 2 pounds) mixed fresh berries, such as strawberries (hulled and halved), raspberries, blackberries, and blueberries
In a small bowl, sprinkle gelatin over 1/4 cup grape juice; let soften 2 to 3 minutes. Meanwhile, heat sugar with another 1/4 cup grape juice in a small saucepan over medium-high heat until dissolved. Remove from the heat and stir in softened gelatin until dissolved, then stir in remaining 1 1/2 cups grape juice.
Place berries in a 4-by-8-inch loaf pan; pour gelatin mixture over, pressing berries gently to submerge completely (remove a few berries if necessary). Refrigerate until firm, at least 3 hours.
To unmold, dip bottom of pan in hotwater about 5 seconds. Invert onto a serving platter, and shake firmly to release. Slice to serve.
Recipe via Martha Stewart
June 28th, 2009 |
Okay….summer is hot!
And as much as we all love a good cocktail, glass of wine or cold beer during a summer BBQ….sometimes it’s just too hot!
Picture this scenario: You are hosting a BBQ on a hot, sunny day, and suddenly your guests are asking for a glass of water. Water?! Water is so boring, right? WRONG! Infuse your water with slices of lemons, limes, strawberries and bunches of mint. Not only will your guests be delighted by how delicious it tastes….they won’t stop talking about how pretty it looks!
June 28th, 2009 |
We baked mini flower cupcakes for dessert for the party….they turned out so cute, I just had to share them with you!
June 27th, 2009 |
Is your silver drink bucket a little too fancy for your summer picnic?! I love this idea…..cut off the top third of the watermelon (could be a straight cut, but I L-O-V-E the curved out version in the picture), and carve out the insides. Fill with ice, stick in your wine bottles and voila!
June 26th, 2009 |
My brother-in-law is visiting us this weekend – so it’s dinner for three tonight! Me and two boys?! Let’s just say they don’t appreciate the fuss I typically put into a dinner party! So this dinner is going to be low on design but high in flavor.
If there is one thing I know they both appreciate, it’s homemade pasta…..so I am going to make capellini with fresh tomatoes and basil. So simple to do:
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 lb. plum tomatoes, seeded and diced
1 cup fresh basil leaves, cut into thin strips
Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
1 lb. dried capellini
In a large nonreactive bowl, combine the olive oil, tomatoes, basil, salt and pepper, and stir until blended. Set aside.
Bring a large pot two-thirds full of water to a boil over high heat. Add salt and the pasta and cook according to the package instructions until al dente (tender but firm to the bite). Drain the pasta, add it to the tomato sauce and toss to mix. Taste and adjust the seasonings with salt and pepper. Divide the pasta among individual bowls and serve immediately. Serves 4.
recipe via Williams-Sonoma