Category Archives: Recipe

I’ve always loved hosting dinner parties. I love planning out menus and decor. I love spending the day in the kitchen filling the house with the smell of home cooking. There is something very rewarding when everything and everyone comes together for a special evening.

Since Sam and I always have a friend or two popping in for lunch or dinner during the week, I’m always prepared to host people on the fly. Over the years I’ve learned that with a few tried and true recipes and a handful of special accessories you can whip up a dinner party that looks fantastic but is deceptively easy to pull together.  Scroll down and take a look at the set up created for a fall themed wine and cheese party. I decided to mix and match everything from the color of the napkins to the silver wear and dish wear.

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After our snowy trip to Sundance I’ve been craving a taste of summer. It’s clementine season so I picked some up from the market and made some clementine fizzes while planning our new tropical adventure.

Ingredients :

3 clementines

1 teaspoon honey

1 bottle dry white wine

1 bottle sparkling water

Makes 4

Directions :

Put a drop of honey and juice a half a clementine in each glass. Mix well until honey dissolves. Add  white wine, about 6 oz per glass, and top with sparkling water. Garnish with a clementine slice. Enjoy while pretending you’re on a sunny beach.

Shutterfly_lateafternoon-1 Shutterfly_lateafternoon-2 Shutterfly_lateafternoon-3 Shutterfly_lateafternoon-4 Shutterfly_lateafternoon-5 Shutterfly New-1 Shutterfly New-2This December Sam and I will be celebrating our 1 year anniversary of being married. We’ve been together for 10 years so being married doesn’t really feel much different to us. However it’s very exciting for our family and friends. This year we’re sending out our very first holiday cards. I personalized our cards with photos from our trip to Paris with the help of Shutterfly. I chose on a simple and elegant design. I customized  everything from the background color to the lining of the envelopes. It was so quick and painless, I ended  up going a little overboard. I designed a blanket with pictures of our dogs, ordered monogrammed mason jars to commemorate our anniversary,  and a cheese board with our names on it. I also designed a few ornament cards with what else but pictures of my dogs for our tree. While making myself all of these goodies, I realized how perfect Shutterfly was for creating special unique gifts to celebrate the treasured moments of our loved ones. I ordered customized gifts for our all of our family members to commemorate their life changing events of the past year.  The biggest event was my sister in law’s recent wedding. I’m really excited to send her glassware engraved with her new family name. Her husband and her are really into beer and finding all the best microbreweries in Colorado so I chose the engraved pilsner glasses. I also got a monogrammed growler, which I thought could also be used as a water bottle for my little sister to take to her ballet classes. I included a special message on the back that I know will make her smile.  Shutterfly really has been a great service for getting something truly unique for the people in your lives that are otherwise pretty hard to shop for.

Check out more at Shutterfly, and create your own holiday cards, design the perfect personalized gifts, plus much more.

This post was created in collaboration with Shutterfly.com

SUNDAY BITES SMOOTHIE-1

Happy 2016 everyone! The first post of the year is my new recipe for a Mango Maca Morning Smoothie. It’s refreshing, tasty, dairy free and most importantly healthy. The “active” ingredients are the maca, lemon, ginger and mint, so you can substitute the rest of the ingredients as you see fit.

Ingredients 

2 cups frozen mango

1 cup frozen strawberries

1 fresh mango

2 sprigs of mint

1.5 tsps of fresh ginger

Juice of 1/2 a lemon

2/3 cups raw vanilla almond milk

2 tsps maca

Directions :

Combine all of the ingredients in a blender and puree until smooth. Make sure to use real raw almond milk which you can find at health stores and juice spots.

Serve and enjoy!

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ASPARAGUS-SOUP

I made this asparagus soup a few weeks back with the intention of posting it before the official start of winter but my sickness got me down and I wasn’t able to get this post up in time. Either way it’s a really easy, healthy and yummy soup. If you like or at least don’t actively dislike asparagus, I suggest you give this recipe a try.

Ingredients :

A large bunch of fresh asparagus (do not use frozen)

3 to 5 cup of vegetable broth

1 large shallot

1 small garlic clove

 A few sprigs of thyme

Watercress for garnish

Salt & pepper

Cooking oil

Directions :

As with almost every soup I make,  I start by chopping the shallot and caramelize them in some pre-heated cooking oil (I almost always use extra virgin olive oil unless otherwise specified). Once the shallots are soft and golden I add in roughly shopped asparagus and cracked garlic. Season with salt and pepper and throw in a few sprigs of thyme. Cover with vegetable broth. The amount of broth you will need will depend on how much asparagus you’re using.  Start with 3 cups and if it feels too thick add one more cup but keep another cup on reserve. Let the soup come to a boil and simmer for about 20 minutes. At this point I like to stick my nose into the soup and smell it /taste it to see what’s missing. Sometimes I’ll add some dried herbs, usually it’s Herb De Provence  because I think it pretty much goes with everything, or more cracked garlic. Feel free to play with this and add herbs and spices that you like. It might turn out terrible or it might end up being delicious.  Cooking is all about getting creative and just  doing your best. Don’t over think it, unless you’re baking because that my friends is most certainly a science. Now let’s get back to the soup. By now it should be coming together. The asparagus should be soft but still maintain it’s green color. If you have a handheld mixer go ahead and puree it right in the cooking bowl, make sure to remove the sprigs of thyme before you start. If you do not have a handheld blender, let the soup cool for at least 12-15  minutes. Transfer into a food processor or blender and puree until smooth. At this point you can use the leftover cup of broth if the soup seems too thick. Once you have the right consistence re-heat the soup for a minute if you didn’t use the handheld blender, transfer into serving bowl and top with a little bit of watercress and freshly round pepper.

Serve and enjoy. Happy Sunday!

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