Monday, July 28, 2014

How to Host a Summer Barbecue

Barbecues are the best type of entertaining.  They're super easy - since you're outside, you don't have to clean the whole house (just the path to the bathroom); very minimal decorations are required; and people aren't expecting anything formal.
The biggest element to having a successful barbecue is the food.  Obviously!  That's why people came in the first place.

I'll share my family's classic bbq recipes over the next few posts so you have specifics, but I thought I'd give you some general tips first.

Sunday, July 27, 2014

365: Week 30

July 21 | Oreo Malted Milkshake for dinner.

Friday, July 25, 2014

Happy Hour: Muddled Monarch

This cocktail has my favorite liqueur in it (at least my favorite, so far!).  St. Germain!  It’s an elderflower liqueur.  

I’m going to let you in on a little secret that might make you never want to read my blog again: I can’t describe the flavor to you.  I know that makes me the worst food blogger in the world and I’m pretty sure describing food & drinks is like #1 in terms of things you should be able to do…but I can’t.  
Honestly, I don’t even know what an Elderflower is. 

So, I cheated.  I googled Elderflowers and St. Germain and I found out that the people that make it (in France) use bicycles to transport the flowers to the plant!!

Yep, definitely my favorite liqueur.  

All you need to know is it tastes good.  It’s a little bit sweet, but not so sweet that you’ll need aspirin in the morning (no guarantee here since I can’t predict how many you’re going to drink - trust me, it’s hard to stop).  

Mix it with tart grapefruit and fragrant mint and you have the Muddled Monarch!

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Chippety Chippers

Austin and I make chocolate chip cookies very differently and neither of us really likes the way the other one makes them. (Sorry :/)

He uses shortening, I use butter.  He uses lots of chocolate chips, I prefer fewer.  I add chopped pecans, he's allergic to tree nuts.
Hey, that reminds me of that song, "Let's call the whole thing off!"  And, believe it or not, sometimes I'm even willing to compromise and do half butter, half Crisco.

With Austin gone though, I just use all butter, all the time.  (Don't be thinking that he's not using all shortening all the time out there in California!)

These cookies would fulfill both of our needs in a cookie too.  They have tons of chocolate chips (milk, semisweet, white & peanut butter!), all butter and no nuts.  If you're tallying, yes, I'm still coming out ahead :)

Monday, July 21, 2014

S'Mores Pie

If I was Oprah and I was hosting a 'my favorite things' show, somehow I would have to figure out how to package a campfire.  It's definitely in my top 10.

I love the smell of it, its bug repellent properties, mindlessly staring at it, and the crackling noises.  
If I don't get to go camping and sit by the fire at least once every 6 weeks in the warmer months, I start to get antsy.  Really, really antsy.  

Since my camping partner is gone and I think I would get a little paranoid sleeping by myself in a tent, I'm going bonkers!
I haven't figured out how to package the campfire experience yet, and the closest thing I could come up with was a s'mores pie.  

I know it's not the same, but it's the best I could do, people!

This pie is sweet!  Like a s'more, but more so.  The chocolate filling is rich and the marshmallow topping is fluffy and creamy.  That being said, a thin slice will most likely be enough.  In other words, you only have to make one of these pies to serve a crowd!  

Friday, July 18, 2014

Happy Hour: Kiwi Grapefruit Cooler

Maybe you've noticed (I hope you haven't though) that my posting schedule has gotten a little wonky lately.  I'm going to blame that on starting a new job.  And that's partly true.  Another part of the problem is that is stays light so late!  I go from eating dinner straight to being late for bed - seriously, how does that happen?!

I've always wanted to be one of those bloggers that's super organized and has posts scheduled into 2015, but I'm not.  I might have the recipe and photos (some of the time), but I don't have the post ready until the second that it's published.
If you know me, this might surprise you.  I am totally neurotic about scheduling and organization.

This week, I decided that this needs to change.  I need to get my blog as OCD as the rest of my life.  So, every Friday (I'm gonna try), I'll be posting a series of "Happy Hour" posts.  I'm counting on you to figure out what the subject matter will be - because, you know, you're not stupid.

That being said, I'm not going to promise that every recipe will have alcohol in it.  (With a preggers sister, I might also have some mocktails in an effort to be inclusive!)  But this kiwi grapefruit cooler is definitely a bit boozy - Happy Friday!

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