Category Archives: appetizer

homemade salsa 1

Just 5: Homemade Salsa

As a kid there was nothing I loved more than chips and salsa as a snack. Over the years we would add queso to the list. I remember coming home from long days at school and my brother and I would sit on the couch sharing a bowl of chips and salsa. It was delicious and always hit the spot. While I’m a bit older now, I still absolutely love this snack and have been exploring recipes to make homemade salsa. This recipe has become a staple around our house. It takes around 5 minutes and 5 ingredients to make. We’re lucky if a jar of this lasts more than a week around our house, so I’m sure you’ll love this staple as well.

Keep reading for the full recipe after the jump!

Just 5: Homemade Salsa

Yields one mason jar of salsa

Ingredients:

  • 1 jalapeno
  • 1 jar organic diced tomatoes, with no salt added or 5 fresh tomatoes
  • 1/4 C cilantro
  • 1/4 chopped onion
  • 2 T white vinegar
  • Juice of two limes
  • 1 T salt

Directions:

Remove seeds and ribs from jalapeno with spoon. Rough chop and place in blender. Add can of tomatoes, cilantro, chopped onion, vinegar, and salt to blender. Blend to desired texture. Add a sprig of cilantro for garnish and serve with your favorite chips. Enjoy!

homemade salsa 2

 

bruschetta

Whipped Goat Cheese Bruschetta (Sweet + Savory)

At every brunch there’s striking the perfect note when it comes to planning the menu. There’s the dishes that are steeped in tradition and expected staples. Then there’s the dishes that make every gathering special, hitting an unexpected note and moment of surprise. This dish was a hit at our brunch and was super easy to make. The sweet bruschetta was topped with mixed berries and cinnamon. The savory bruschetta is topped with prosciutto, fresh mozzarella, and basil.

Keep reading for the full preparation after the jump!

Whipped Goat Cheese Bruschetta (Sweet + Savory)

Ingredients:

  • 1 loaf organic baguette
  • 1/2 C balsamic vinegar
  • 2 T organic raw honey, divided
  • 8 oz cream cheese
  • 4 oz goat cheese
  • Fresh basil
  • One ball mozzarella
  • 1 T extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 container raspberries
  • 1 container blueberries

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. At a 45 degree angle slice bread into 3/4 inch slices with a serrated knife. Place on a cookie sheet. Using a pastry brush, spread olive oil on the top of each piece of bread. Place in oven to toast for 10 minutes or until golden brown.

Meanwhile, in small sauce pan combine balsamic vinegar and 1 T honey. Bring to boil and then reduce. The reduction is complete when it coats the back of the spoon and falls in thin ribbons. In a  food processor pulse cream cheese, goat cheese, and honey.

To assemble: Apply a generous spread of the cheese mixture. For the savory bruschetta, layer a thin round of sliced mozzarella, prosciutto, and fresh basil. For the sweet bruschetta, add mixed berries and a dash of cinnamon. Finish both the sweet and savory bruschetta with a generous drizzle of balsamic reduction. Enjoy!

 

 

easter brunch

Easter Brunch

I’ve always loved gatherings and this season has been no different. With fresh blooms and the upcoming holiday, any excuse to share a great meal and celebrate among those you love is welcome. With the Easter holiday on Sunday, we’re spending the rest of the week getting you prepared. This brunch menu is light and slightly decadent. A table with a low lying arrangement, natural linen, dusty pink velvet, and pops of lavender, gives an updated nod to Easter without being overly literal. It is perfect for any spring gathering.

Keep reading for the full details after the jump!

The Table

I wanted a table that felt fresh and updated. There’s always a balance when it comes to building a table for holidays. I like things to feel special, while not feeling overdone. By keeping the table bare with a natural linen runner, we kept stuffy textiles at bay, giving things a bit more of a relaxed vibe. For each place setting, we placed a single sprig of lavender tied around a white napkin with a dusty pink crushed velvet ribbon. The place settings were finished out with white plates and gold flatware.


The Centerpiece

I like to play with floral from the grocery store when putting together a gathering last minute. (All the prep and setup for this shoot from shopping to guests arriving was around 3 hours.) Using a thrifted copper strainer and wet oasis purchased from the dollar store, I was able to create a stunning arrangement for around $10. I wanted the arrangement to have movement, so I foraged birch branches, adding an unexpected element. With pink ranunculus, spray roses, and dahlias in shades of pink and ivory, these blooms were showcased after a base of rosemary and lavender flowers of greenery were placed. The final result was a showpiece and worthy of the center of the easter table. The rest of the table was filled with platters and food, keeping plenty of space for passing dishes throughout the morning.

easter brunch 2 The Menu

With the arrival of spring, I love my menus to highlight fresh herbs, citrus, and veggies from the farmer’s market. This menu was no different.

Fresh Squeezed Organic Orange or Grapefruit Mimosas
Whipped Goat Cheese Bruschetta (sweet + savory)
Crustless Spring Vegetable Frittata
Rosemary Roasted Potatoes

Come back tomorrow as we share the recipes for our brunch!

Can’t wait? Here are some great recipes to celebrate the holiday.

Lamb 3 Ways: Roasted Lamb
Cranberry Pomegranate Mimosas
Recipe Remix: Gralehaus Lamb and Grits
A Spring Whole30 Dinner Party
A Pastel and Vibey Easter Brunch: Thrifted and On Trend
Winter Citrus Sangria
Gluten-Free Everything Muffins
Recipe Remix: Garlic, Goat Cheese, and Truffle Salt Scramble
Eggs and Nostalgia: A Simple Easter DIY
Blood Orange Rosemary Old Fashioned
Bacon, Asparagus, and Goat Cheese Tart

 

 

 

bacon asparagus goat cheese tart

Bacon, Asparagus, and Goat Cheese Tart

I love celebrating the seasons. One of my favorite parts of spring is the seasonal produce. As soon as blood oranges and fresh asparagus arrive to the market, I’m giddy. (I can’t wait until fig season is here too!) In honor of the season, we came up with this delightful tart. It’s decadent with layers of puff pastry, herbed cheese and peppered turkey bacon. Cut into smaller portions it’s perfect for feeding a crowd.

Keep reading for the full recipe after the jump!

Bacon, Asparagus, Goat Cheese Tart

6-8 servings

Ingredients:

    • 1 large stalk of asparagus, trimmed
    • Juice of one lemon
    • 10 pieces peppered turkey bacon
    • 1 package of phyllo dough, thawed
    • 1 C mozzarella cheese
    • 1 t italian seasoning
    • 1/4 C olive oil
    • 4 oz goat cheese
    • salt and pepper, to taste
    • sprigs of fresh mint


Directions:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

In a large skillet cook turkey bacon. Meanwhile trim asparagus. Dry with a paper towel. Place in bowl and toss with 1 T extra virgin olive oil, lemon, salt and pepper. Once bacon is cooked remove from skillet and chop into small strips.

In a small food processor combine goat cheese, 1 t extra virgin olive oil, and Italian seasoning. Pulse until all ingredients are thoroughly combined.

To prepare the phyllo dough, roll out and then place a damp cloth on top, retaining the moisture. Using olive oil and a pastry brush, place sheets of dough on a cookie sheet, brushing olive oil in between each layer. For this tart we used around 10 sheets of phyllo dough.

Using a spoon spread the goat cheese mixture. Place asparagus spears on top. Add chopped bacon and mozzarella cheese. Top with salt and pepper. Bake in oven for 10-15 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from oven and top with torn fresh mint. Enjoy!

oven roasted asparagus with lemon and garlic

Oven Roasted Asparagus with Lemon and Garlic

If there’s one vegetable I could never tire of it would be asparagus. I know it’s shown up on the blog time and time again for this very reason. Whether made into asparagus fries (insert link) or served with an aioli and eggs, there’s something about this vegetable that I adore. This recipe is a classic and staple in our house, perfect in time for asparagus season.

Keep reading for the full recipe after the jump!

oven roasted asparagus

Oven Roasted Asparagus with Lemon and Garlic

Servings: 4

Ingredients:

  • 1 bunch of asparagus
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • Juice and zest of a lemon
  • 2 T extra virgin olive oil
  • salt and pepper, to taste

Directions:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Clean asparagus and snap off the ends. Place on a cookie sheet lined with aluminum foil. Add minced garlic and lemon juice and zest. Toss with olive oil. Season with salt and pepper. Toss until thoroughly coated. Cook in oven for 15 minutes or  until asparagus has a slight crisp to it. Place on platter and serve.