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pop pop popular salad

I have brought this salad as a pot-luck dish to many parties over the years and everyone always asks for the recipe. I brought it again last weekend and promised the recipe would be here this week. Promise kept!

I use already toasted and peeled hazelnuts from Trader Joe’s for this recipe.

If you have raw hazelnuts, go to this LINK to learn how to toast and skin them.

I almost never go to all that trouble anymore. Just another reason I am always so grateful for Trader Joe’s! I also used TJ’s quinoa, a mix of red and white.

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April 13, 2018   3 Comments

horseradish vinegar

In yesterday’s post, I spoke of my childhood trauma with canned vegetables and encouraged you to share childhood food stories of your own. Lori and Amy obliged and shared both hilarious and horrifying stories. Thank you! I laughed and cringed at the same time. The best part – bits of each of your stories are parts of my hot cereal story, so now I’m going to have to share it!

Not today though. In my next post, I promise.

Today, I’m going to give you a recipe that will use up extra horseradish root you may have after making the fresh horseradish sauce that went with Wednesday’s beef brisket recipe. I had a big piece of horseradish root left, so something needed to be done with it.

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March 3, 2017   No Comments

a little more cheese

This is the second side-dish that accompanied the Pork Schnitzel and the last of the savory dishes from the German-Swiss Dinner Party.

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Did you think you’d seen the last of the recipes containing cheese from the extravagantly cheesy dinner? I’m afraid not. I do promise this is the last of it though, there was no cheese in the dessert, which I will post the recipe for tomorrow.

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Then on Friday, get ready for another contest. This time, instead of winning cookbooks, if you live in The Valley of the Sun, you could win a free spot in a cooking class. Stay tuned!

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October 19, 2016   1 Comment

Main Courses

individual beef wellington

MAIN COURSES

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September 2, 2016   Comments Off on Main Courses

Marissa’s Bridal Shower

sign

After a long hiatus, as promised, the next week will be filled with photos, crafts, recipes, and details from my daughter’s beautiful bridal shower. But before I begin, I want to let you know that I’ve missed creating and sharing recipes. I’ve really missed blogging. I’ve missed posting. I’ve missed you! It feels good to be back, even if only for a week.

window hearts

Today will be mostly a pictorial, giving an overview of the party. Tomorrow, the details will begin.

lined envelope

As any good invitation should do, this one set the theme.

invite

Marissa is a voracious reader. She loves books. Her degree in Journalism with a Creative Writing minor, so a literary theme fit her to a tee.

book sleeves

Immediately upon entering, guests were greeted by a table filled with library bookplates with their names on them. The bridal party’s bookplates had a little bling tied to theirs.

welcome

A chalkboard sign instructed them what to do with their bookplate. Marissa’s maid-of-honor, Kaley, used her perfect penmanship and artistic flair to create all the chalkboard signs for the shower. Thank you, Kaley!

the table

When guests walked into Barbara Fenzl’s beautiful backyard, this is the table where they had their choice of seats.

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May 12, 2015   6 Comments

CA to TX – days two and three

Day 2 of the “San Francisco to Austin Adventure” found us waking up in a hotel in Fresno at 6:00 AM, eating breakfast in the lobby together by 6:30 and on the road by 7:00.

fruit trees

Our destination for the day? Home in our own beds in Scottsdale, AZ!

fruit blooms

The drive through California’s Central Valley, also known as “America’s Fruit Basket” was especially beautiful this time of year, with all the rows and rows of fruit trees in bloom.

pyramid lake

Along the way, we passed the Smokey Bear Road exit and soon after that, we drove along with Pyramid Lake Recreation Area, which seemed to go on forever. It was a beautiful drive south through California. Soon after we turned east, not so much. Ugly desert for most of the rest of the day.

AZ

The best part was when we finally saw this welcoming sign! Dave and Marissa were in the car and arrived home about 90 minutes before Jeff and me, since we were driving the truck, and towing the VW Bug. It was such a treat to sleep in our own beds, especially with the knowledge that we still had two long days of driving to go!

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March 1, 2015   3 Comments

Cocktails & Cupcakes Bridal Shower

All week I will post photos and recipes from Megan’s bridal shower.

How cute is the invite?!? Laura ordered them from HERE on Etsy.

Cocktails Cupcakes

Megan is Laura’s daughter. Laura is my best friend from high school. She was my maid of honor and I was a bridesmaid at her wedding. Laura is Marissa’s godmother and I am godmother to two of her sons. So, yeah, we have lots of loving ties to each other.

3 generagionsThree generations of beautiful women! Laura’s mom, Coleen, the guest of honor, Megan, and my dear friend, Laura.

The theme may have been cocktails and cupcakes, but the shower began at 5:00, so dinner was on the menu too!

Megan’s Bridal Shower Menu

The Appetizers

The Cocktails

The Savory

  • Build Your Own Nià§oise Salad
  • Cheese Board

cheese board

The Cupcakes

Stephies vanity

I had a lot of inspiration from my wonderful neighbors, Cindi and Cheryl.

Cindi is the queen of hosting bridal showers! She has some really unique ideas to make bridal showers memorable. She took her daughter, Stephie’s, vanity out of the bedroom and used it as a champagne bar.

Marissas vanity

Cindi generously offered the vanity for me to use. But I had already used Marissa’s mirrored vanity.

old fashioneds

I moved it downstairs and outside and used it to serve the Maple Old Fashioned drinks. Such a glamorous look!

cindis door

Cindi also loaned me a wedding dress that she used as the front door decor. Doesn’t it look fabulous on her gorgeous front door?!?

my door

Not quite as impressive on my door, but the guests still thought it was beautiful, of course, they didn’t know any better! Since I have the double doors, I had to somehow balance it out, so I used the vintage window frame/chicken wire frame that Peggy made for me.

chicken wire frame

It’s pretty darn cute!

napkin ring ring

Lastly, Cindi loaned me big “diamond” ring napkin rings. Not the best photo of them, but they were darling. Thank you Cindi for all your help and inspiration. xoxo

salad stuff

Now it’s time to share the inspiration from Cheryl. Do you remember this photo from back in December? This is what she made for her annual Ornament Exchange and I’ve been dying to recreate it ever since! As you’ll see in the recipe below, I copied Cheryl’s salad down to the order in which the components are placed on the platter. No need to mess with perfection! Thank you, Cheryl! xoxo

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February 9, 2015   4 Comments

breakfast lasagna

crafty!

Yesterday, I held my 5th annual Craft Party. This time around, I only provided three craft options and asked the attendees to provide crafts they wanted to share too.

Just as only one of my three crafts sold out while the other two went nearly or completely untouched – some of the guest crafts were very popular and others only had one or two that were made. But, it’s all good – everyone had a great time crafting, eating, drinking, and socializing.

craft food

I made two egg dishes, a sweet crêpe option, muffins, and, as promised, the Frosted Pumpkin Cookies.

The first recipe I’ll be sharing is a fun breakfast or brunch lasagna.

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October 13, 2014   2 Comments

Happy 4th!

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As I told you earlier in the week, I pulled out all my 4th of July decorations and began decorating the house for a little BBQ/Pool Party we are having today.

Happily, I took all the photos throughout the week because I’m not sure what it’s all going to look like when I wake up on the 4th. You see, I am typing this on Thursday night, during a massive wind/dust storm.

storm

I lifted these two photos from the 12 News Facebook page. The one on the left, of Sky Harbor International Airport, was taken by Zachary Doublery and to one on the right was taken by Benita Skalada out the window of the airplane as she was taking off.

Yes, that is what is raging outside my home right now on Thursday night, July 3rd.

But honestly, a few tousled decorations are nothing when you consider that more than 25,000 people are without power due to the storm. And at least 24 flights bound for Phoenix were diverted to other airports.

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Since I don’t know what will still be standing (hanging) when I awake in the morning, I’ll go ahead and share the details with you now.

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I hung bunting over every door…

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… and flags in every window.

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The covered patios are alive with the Red, White & Blue…

and blue

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As is the pool and BBQ area.

red white

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July 4, 2014   4 Comments

best cauliflower side dish EVER!

devour

My dear friend and neighbor, Ronnie, recently turned me on to this recipe. She had returned from eating at the Domenica Restaurant at the Roosevelt Hotel in New Orleans. She raved about a cauliflower dish she had there.

So, of course, I had to give it a try. She was spot on! This is one of the best side dishes I’ve had in eons! It is already bookmarked as one of our “must-have” and “go to” sides. An instant family favorite! Thank you, Ronnie! xoxo

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February 11, 2014   5 Comments