Monthly Archives: March 2013

The Wine List

Wine

Looking for some wine recommendations for a dinner party you’re hosting? Can’t decide on the right bottle to pair with your dinner?

Here are some of my recommendations right now:

Take Out Thai Food on the Coach: Gundlach Bundshu Gewurztraminer

Girls Night: Ferrari Carano Fume Blanc

Roasted Chicken Dinner with the Parents: Rombauer Chardonnay

Hosting an Italian Dinner Party: Thomas Fogarty Skyline

Date Night at a Steak House: Ridge Geyserville Blend

Anniversary Celebration: Jordan Cabernet

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What is your favorite thing to sip on lately?

*Images courtesy of Taylor Feezor

Kitchen Necessities

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Whether you are starting your wedding registry, moving into a new place or just rounding out your existing kitchen tool line-up, this is the post for you.

I am a gadget lover and living in a smaller home, has really made me choose which items deserve kitchen space. Here is my list of Top 5 favorites:

1. Kitchen Aid – From cookies to mashed potatoes this thing will make your life a million times easier. Yes, it takes up a lot of space, but throw those egg beaters away and clear some extra room… because this is worth it.  I own a KitchenAid KSM150PS 5 Qt Stand Mixer and LOVE it.  Shopping websites often have these on sale, so keep your eye out… but otherwise you can buy them anywhere from Kohls to William Sonoma (on sale now!).

2. Breville Hemisphere Control Blender – I know people die for the Vitamix blender, but the price tag gave me a mini heart attack… so after reading a Men’s Journal article that had the Breville beat out the Vitamix, I figured I had to give it a shot… and boy am I glad I did!  It makes amazing smoothies, grinds nuts and oatmeal to a powder, and makes snow out of ice! And for half the price… you can’t really beat it! Plus its $100 off at William Sonoma now!

3. Wustof Knives – We didn’t get knives as a wedding gift and we held out without a “normal knife set” for over 8 months before J had a fit and demanded we be grown ups and get some.  I went to Bed Bath and Beyond (with my 20% coupon…duh.) and made a b-line to the cutlery department.  The overwhelmed look on my face quickly caught the attention of an employee who helped me with this life changing purchase.  We knew we wanted Wustof and he confirmed this choice was a good one.  He directed me to a 10 piece set that had everything we would need for a “starter” kit – kitchen shears, bread knife, cook’s knife, etc. These knives are AMAZING, they are so sharp, the perfect weight, and cooking with nice knives is such a luxury… I’m still kicking myself for fighting this purchase for so long… don’t make the same mistake as me!

4. Salad Spinner – Having grown up with one of these I didn’t know until college that this wasn’t a staple in everyone’s homes.  Honestly trying to dry salad with paper towels is annoying and takes forever.  Do yourself a favor and spend the $20! I recommend filling it with water and putting the lettuce in it and letting it sit for a bit to really clean it (add a few ice cubes for crunchy lettuce!). Then take off the bottom portion to drain the water, then replace and use as directed!

5. Crock Pot – I don’t know what I’d do without this… I use it at least once a week (in the winter basically every night). I upgraded to this Costco version for the larger size and for $4o and a self timer capability you can’t beat it!

Some favorite gadgets that don’t need an explanation:

– Rösle Silicone Locking Tongs

– OXO 3-Piece Angled Measuring Cup Set

– Rösle Extra Fine Straight Peeler

– Chef’n® Black Garlic Press

– Glass and Store Rectangular Casserole

– Set of 12 Storage Bowls With Clear Lids

I could go on and on… but if you want any more input I’d be more than happy to share!

What are your favorite kitchen tools!?

Panzanella

The perfect spring/summer dish – Panzanella! So easy and so tasty… the better the ingredients you can find… the better! So raid those gardens and farmers markets and get to cooking!

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Weekly Outfit #3

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Outfit #1: J.Crew Military Jacket, Ombre Chambray Top (similar), Black “Hunter” James Jeans, White Converse, Leopard Madewell Purse (sold out – similar)

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Outfit #2: Pink Zara Blazer, J. Crew Striped Tee, Black Anthropologie Pants, DV Sandals, Anthropologie Necklace

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Outfit #3: Tory Burch Printed Top, Vince Camuto Ankle Pants, BCBG Heels, J.Crew Belt

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Outfit #4: Royal Blue Blouse, Zara Leather Pencil Skirt, Prabal Gurung for Target Heels, Vintage Earrings

 

Mexican Fiesta

Interested in having a dinner party?  Here is a great Mexican inspired menu to try out:

Blood Orange Margaritas

Shredded Beef Salad (inspired by my favorite salad at Javier’s in Laguna Beach)

Sweet Potato Tostadas with Chipotle Lime Sour Cream

Mexican Tomato Salad

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All it takes is a little morning prep and the rest can be put together about an hour or so before dinner time.  Ole!

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