Since my last post we have traveled from Kentucky to North Carolina. I sit now with my little apple-clad laptop on my lap in my dad and stepmom's back yard. A hornet's nest sits six feet to my left, but thankfully it seems that most of them have died in last night's hot-water drenching (don't ask).Read More
I could walk through the desert for days and not be as thirsty as I get while photographing weddings. As I wait for the bride and groom to smooch, I think about slurping down a super-cold slushy or a big fat glass of ice cold water.Read More
Dan and I visited Las Vegas yearly for a handful of years after we got married. Due to a tightened budget, it has been nearly FOUR YEARS since we have been to Vegas together. One of our fondest memories involves lounging next to the Mirage swimming pool and gazing upward at an endless blue sky through the branches of palm trees.Read More
An unexpected busy season has threatened to pull me under water. Typically this is my "free" time, filled with spending time with my boys, blogging and cooking...and just before my really busy season begins. I'm grateful for the financial blessings right now, but...I'M TIRED. Just like all of the rest of the working mamas in the world.Read More
Before I get to the winner of the $25, t-shirt and other goodies, I have to tell you that I am disappointed in myself for not sharing this smoothie with you sooner. It's one that I make regularly. Almost daily in the summers. It is fantastic, versatile, healthy and packed with total good-ness.Read More
The only word I can think of to describe the weather right now is delicious. It is absolutely perfect outside. I want to put it in a dish and eat it. I have not been able to comfortably sit on my patio often this summer, so I have much appreciation for it right now.Read More
Spring Break has officially begun in our school district, so I am going to need to get creative with my 5-year-old for the next week. We have found that no school for consecutive days makes him grumpy. We call it Caged Lion Syndrome.Read More
Such a fun, delicious drink that will be memorable, and perfect for those summer catch ups with friends. This Orange-Pomegranate Martini is wonderful because it’s made of fresh ingredients. This is a drink that has refreshing taste!
I just got back from spending a few days in Denver with a friend. We spent our time walking around downtown, enjoying art and the mountains and eating A TON of delicious food. The food became the unintentional highlight and general theme of our trip. We did not have even one meal that we thought to be mediocre. I wish I had taken even one food picture, but I am sad to say that I did not. I was far too busy stuffing my face.
Our hotel hosted free wine and beer for one hour every evening, so we didn't branch out much with the drinks. We did have one memorable non-wine drink, however. We had some time to kill before dinner on our first night in town, so we stopped at a swanky lil' bar and had a delicious cocktail that coincidentally tasted a lot like the martini featured in this blog post. The expensive version was not as tasty, though, because my version involves very freshly squeezed juice. Have I told you yet that my husband is a bit of a juicing fanatic? He goes through phases where he will literally run everything he sees through our juicer. I'm always happy to enter our kitchen to be greeted by endless glasses of various fresh juices.
This recipe makes 2 servings.
Pour the following ingredients into a cocktail shaker:
Juice from 2 oranges
Juice from 1/2 of a lime
2 oz. pomegranate liqueur
4 oz. vodka
A handful of crushed ice
Put the lid on the shaker and shake gently. Strain the contents into 2 martini glasses. Top each with a splash of lemon-lime soda, and garnish with orange slices, if desired.
I'm a bit behind with my posting, as you can see from the candy canes. However, candy canes are not necessary to make this hot chocolate fantastic. It is a really creamy and tasty hot drink for a cold day. I slurped it down quite quickly. Or, slurged it down, as my 4-year-old says.Read More
When a recipe turns out better than you could have ever imagined you add it to every summer party menu!
This post is a part of a Foodbuzz Tastemaker program with Godiva Coffee. I was honored to be asked to sample this amazing product! When I opened up the box I received in the mail, I instantly began salivating upon reading "Chocolate Truffle" on the packaging. Chocolate Truffle-flavored coffee? Are you kidding?! My mind started swimming as I pondered what I should create. I decided upon a summer-themed drink, as I cherish the summer-time so very much. It turned out to be tastier than I could have imagined. I plan to make this very recipe again soon and serve it as dessert to guests.
Start by purchasing a 12-ounce bag of ground Godiva Chocolate Truffle Coffee.
The following makes enough for one serving, so adjust according to number of servings.
Brew 4 ounces of coffee and allow it to cool to room temperature. Pour the coffee into a large mug or coffee glass.
In a microwave-safe bowl, heat 2 teaspoons of raspberry preserves, to soften. Mix the softened preserves in with the cooled coffee.
Add 2 scoops of vanilla ice cream to the mug/glass and top with fresh raspberries.
I have in my hands two $2 off (any 12-oz. bag of Godiva Coffee) coupons to send to the first two interested parties to contact me (use contact button at top of page). Send me your mailing address and I will put them in the mail!
To keep in theme and we all know how much I love coffee. Coffee Cubes are easy to make and they add an extra zing to cold coffee! These go great with Cold Brew!
First, I would like to thank you all for the sweet well wishes and prayers for my brave boy. His surgery was a complete success! We could not have asked for a better outcome. Here is a photo of him, ONE WEEK AFTER OPEN HEART SURGERY.Read More
I'm a day late with this post again this week. I'm not sure how much time I will have in the coming days to post, so please forgive me for that.
So, drinks! Summer drinks! I love them. For me, lovely Minnesota weather = fun drinks, bbq-ing and family/friend outside time. When you endure an insanely cold and treacherous winter, these things all become really exciting. I was excited to mix up a fun new cocktail for my husband and me to enjoy in the 95-degree weather this week. It's the kind of cocktail you can't drink more than one of, or at least I can't. Its sweetness satisfied me after just one, and we are saving the rest for another day. I have placed the remainder in the freezer for a post-surgery indulgence.
In a medium bowl, toss together:
3 pounds strawberries, hulled and coarsely chopped
2/3 cup sugar
Let stand, stirring occasionally, until the strawberries release their juices, about 10 minutes.
In a blender, combine half each of:
The strawberries and their juices
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons vodka
1/4 cup fresh lime juice
1 cup of ice
Puree and pour into a pitcher.
Repeat with the remaining strawberries, juices, vodka and lime juice and 1 more cup of ice.
Fill 10 glasses (or just 2, and chill/freeze the rest) halfway with ice. Pour into the glasses and top each with:
1/2 tablespoon chilled Riesling
I hope you are all enjoying this hot summer weather as much as I am.
By the way, the pile of snow is gone. :)
Bacon + Pepper Infused Vodka = MAGIC!
I think the thing I love most about the Bloody Mary is that it provides a good excuse to eat cheese and pickles and celery and olives and delicious chunks of meat. What other drink comes standard with snacks and beer? My husband and I, in our pre-child days, frequented Green Mill for the sole purpose of drinking their Bloody Marys. They are served with a ridiculous amount of snacks loaded into them. Plus, along with every BM purchase comes a tote filled with ingredients/condiments that can be added. We loved to load up our drinks with anything that contained spice and then we would feast and slurp away.
Now that we have two little ones, we don't go to Green Mill to drink BMs anymore. In fact, we really don't drink BMs much at all. But since discovering the magic of bacon and pepper infused vodka, I could not pass up the opportunity to create the ultimate Spicy Bloody Mary!
Now, there is one prerequisite for making this drink. You must have a love for peppery spiciness. Oh, and you need to enjoy consuming Bloody Marys.
If the above applies to you, then make this! It will not disappoint!
Make a batch of bacon & pepper infused vodka (this process takes 1-2 days).
Fill a celery-salt-rimmed glass with ice and add 1.5 shots of your infused vodka. Pour bloody mary mix over the top (use a mix that isn't heavily spiced or flavored..the flavors in the infused vodka take care of everything) and leave about 3/4 of an inch at the top of the glass.
Add 2 tablespoons of pickle juice and about 6 or so dashes of Worcestershire sauce. Stir with a stir stick.
Garnish to your desiring. Here are a few suggestions: celery, chunks of salami, olives of any variety, chunks of different types of cheese, celery, pickles, pepperoni, cherry tomatoes, cucumber slices, bacon, banana peppers. And last but not least, add a beer chaser, if that's your thing.
This juice might look scary to little ones, but it is DELICIOUS! And HEALTHY! Drink up!
The only reason I have labeled this juice as "scary" is because that was my three-year-old's reaction to it. When I asked him if he wanted to try a sip, a frightened look came over his face and he said, "No, thank you!" as he ran quickly into another room. At least he was polite about it! As scary as it might appear to a toddler, it is honestly far from it.
I'm not always good about eating fruit in the winter, so this is an easy and totally yummy way to drink some good vitamins and nutrients.
Place the following ingredients into a food processor:
1 cucumber, peeled and cut into chunks
3 kiwis, peeled and quartered
2 handfuls of fresh spinach
1 apple, peeled and cored
A long drizzle of honey
Process until smooth, chill and enjoy your non-scary Scary Juice!
Bacon makes everything better, even vodka. Add to it a spicy jalapeno for kicks and it’s delicious revelry! If you love food and drinks that makes your mouth burn and my nose run, like me, this is a perfect vodka recipe for you. The spicier, the better! Perfect for a blood mary or a soda.Read More
A festive sparkling drink, great for toasting in the new year! Mixed together quickly with fresh fruit making this sangria so light and ready to serve in minutes. So simple, yet so refreshingly tasty!
My husband and I love hosting parties. It is such fun to make a ton of food and create a fun, safe environment for friends for an evening. Since we've had kids, our gatherings have become much more low-key, much smaller and much less frequent. We hadn't had people over for an official gathering since well before I was pregnant with Samson, a year and a half ago. So, to slowly get ourselves back into the hosting scene, we decided to have a few people over for New Year's Eve. Just a few. We made it super low-key because we had just gotten home from our vacation in North Carolina the day before. I'm already planning a bigger gathering in my head. One involving a lot of cooking, Ebby and hungry friends.
Anyway, back to New Year's Eve. I wanted to make a festive drink to go with our spread of food that we could toast to the new year with! Except, it didn't last until 2011. It was tasty, though! And so pretty.
All you need is:
1 bottle sparkling wine or champagne
1 1/2 cups cranberry juice (I used cran-grape)
12 red grapes
1 apple, thinly sliced
1 orange, thinly sliced
1 lime, thinly sliced
1 lemon, thinly sliced
Throw everything into a pitcher, mix, and pour into champagne flutes. So simple, yet so refreshingly tasty! Happy New Year!
For a summer take on a sangria try my Watermelon Raspberry Sangria. It's fruity, it's bubbly and it's refreshing!
It took me a good number of years to truly fall in love with The Margarita. Once I did, I fell hard. And I became extremely picky. My margaritas cannot be too sweet. Or too tart. The tequila cannot overpower the mix.Read More
I haven't always enjoyed the taste of gin. I used to run from its overwhelming pine tree aroma and flavor. Then I had my first baby and my preferences changed. I suddenly enjoyed the taste of it! I have not done a ton of experimenting..Read More