Thursday, May 6, 2010

Down South

I was in St. George a while ago and found an awesome mexican restaurant. I seriously can't get their fajita burrito out of my mind and it's been weeks!

Next time you find yourself in St. George, Utah check out:

Don Pedro's
567 South Valley View Drive, St George, UT

Snow Canyon image

Monday, May 3, 2010


It's been forever since I posted. I thought the best way to get going again was to get myself to put together a menu for the week. I love doing this because it forces me to do two things: use up parrishables, and grocery shop with a purpose.

Menu for this week:
Crock Pot Chuck Roast, with carrots and potatoes and leftover crescent rolls from Sunday dinner. This is always one of my favorites because it's so easy and it's ready for me right when I get home.

Caprese Paninis - I went out of town a couple weeks ago for work, to the exciting city of Casper Wyoming, and ended up finding a fabulous Italian restaurant called Boticelli. Who knew Casper would have good places to eat? Anyway, I ordered their caprese panini and it was so good it reminded me of my trip to Italy last summer. Just put fresh mozzerella, tomatoes, and pesto between some good bread, like ciabatta and press on a panini machine. If you don't have one, a George Forman grill does the trick.

Crock Pot Chicken Tacos - place chicken in a crock pot with some salsa on low for around four hours. About 30 minutes before it's done add some sour cream and shred the chicken. Put chicken on flour tortillas and squeeze some lime juice on top. Add cheese and tomatoes.

Gorgonzola Steak Salad - I went with some girlfriends to the Sego Lily restaurant and had the best salad. It seems pretty similar to this recipe, so I'm going to give it a try and see how it compares.
Image 1, 2

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Kitchen Love - Up Close and Personal

I feel pretty lucky. We live by a lot of my husband's extended family and they are all so much fun and we really love spending time with them.

In fact, the first Thursday of every month, all of us girls get together and have game night. It gives us one night away from the husbands and kids, as well as gives us a chance to see each others homes.

Last month we went to Jenny's house and I'm so mad I didn't bring my camera! She just built a beautiful home and I fell in love with it! My favorite part was her kitchen. It's pretty much everything I want my dream kitchen to be. Pretty white cabinets, dark wood floors, black countertops, amazing appliances (double ovens and double wide fridge - hello!). I may or may not have hugged her fridge, I'm just sayin'.

Since I don't have any pictures, I figured I would post this amazing kitchen and dining room I found in Lonny Magazine, via madebygirl. I'm seriously considering putting those dining room chairs in my living room. Beautiful. Enjoy!

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Coconut Delight

I've been dying to try out this recipe for Ina Garten's Coconut Cupcake for forever. I swear Ina Garten can do no wrong.
If you love coconut, but don't want to take the time to make my coconut cake, this is the way to go.
Try these out, their delicious.
Tip: You can half the frosting recipe, or do what I did and use the left over frosting for homemade oreos (it compliments them well).

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Easter Dessert

Last year I spent a lot of time making this yummy Coconut Cake. Although it was totally worth it, I think I'll keep it simple this year.

Tonight we're heading over to my sister's house and I'm bringing my favorite cookies. If you haven't tried my Sugar Cookie Recipe yet, you're going to want to. They really are the best.

I recently made these for a church fundraiser and they sold like hot cakes!

Easter Morning

I'm sitting in bed watching General Conference. I love that it falls on Easter Sunday this year. It's nice to feel like we are actually thinking about the meaning of Easter for the bulk of our day.

It's a family tradition with the Husband's family to have omlettes during the first session of Conference. I love this tradition. So Husband and I got up and cooked up some yummy omlettes, of which I ate the whole thing:)

Tip: most people cook their eggs at too high of a temperature. Turn your stove just below medium heat and be patient, it's worth it.

Next time I think I'll try these omlettes!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Ace of Cakes

It's images like these that make me want to take a cake decorating class. Has anyone ever taken one? My friend Lauren, who lives in Texas, took one and said that after just a few short lessons it's quite easy to master. I know your local Michael's Craft Store offers classes. I'd probably take a class if someone did it with me!

photo via Style Me Pretty

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Lucky You!

Ireland is by far one of the prettiest places I've ever visited. It makes me kind of fond for good ol' St. Patty's Day.
It also makes me wish I was throwing a party. Aren't these cupcake toppers cute! Find them at How About Orange. Better yet, throw a party and invite me!

Friday, March 12, 2010

Scones across the globe

I love a good scone, and I'm not talking abou the deep fat fried American kind. I have two really great memories stemming from a really good scone.

The first is when I was in Europe about 4 years ago. It was in Bath, England in a really fancy restaurant. I wasn't even hungry, but I couldn't pass it up. So I ordered juice and scones. The English know how to do it.

The next is when I was in Canada with the husband a couple of years ago at my favorite Bed & Breakfast (that I like to talk about so much). On our last day here, before we headed back to Seattle, they served these fabulous Lemon Scones (you can see my scone on our table:). They were so good in fact, that I had them wrap me up a couple for later. I recently served them for Valentines Day just as a sweet reminder to my Husband.

Lemon Scones
3 cups all-purpose flour
3 Tbl sugar
2 Tbl baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
zest 1 lemon
3/4 cup cold butter
1 egg
raw sugar
3/4 cup white chocolate shavings

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

Sift flour, sugar, baking powder, salt and the lemon zest into the bowl of a food processor. Pulse a few times to mix the dry ingredients.

Cut the butter into 1" cubes and add to the processor. Pulse until the mixture resembles coarse peas. Crack the egg into a large glass measuring cup and beat lightly. Add the buttermilk until the liquid reaches 9 ounces.

Slowly add the liquid to the batter, pulsing after each addition. Then add white chocolate shavings. Be careful not to overmix. Only pulse until the mixture starts to come together.

Turn out dough on a lightly floured surface. Pat or roll the dough to a 1" thickness. Using a 2" cutter (heart-shapes are fun), cut the dough into desired shape and place on parchment lined baking sheet. Use two baking sheets together to prevent the bottoms of the scones from becoming too brown.

Sprinkle the top with raw sugar. Bake about 15 minutes until lightly golden.

These are really good served with creme fraiche and homemade jam.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Argh Matey!

I have two reasons behind this post. One, to let everyone know that I seriously have the cutest nephew! And two, my sister-in-law really knows how to throw a great kids birthday party.

I love the creativity that goes into planning a child's birthday party, which is why I tend to post about them. This post is a little late, but I just had to share the details of this pirate party.

Kohen, my nephew, is going through a serious pirate phrase. If you run into him and ask him what a pirate says, he'll reply, in a "scary" voice, "Argh Matey!"

The party came complete with an amazing pirate ship cake, and a ship full of little pirates.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Just What I Needed

I spent the weekend with a few girlfriends at the beautiful Zermatt Resort in Midway, Utah. It was such a nice, needed break from life. We ate lots of food, talked & talked, and shopped & shopped. These women are so amazing and so fun to be around. They indulged me and let me cook them breakfast. So I grabbed my favorite breakfast cookbook, of which I've shared many recipes from, Fabulous Fairholme. I honestly had a hard time deciding on what to make since everything in this book is golden.

I finally went with the Lemon Ricotta Pancakes and was happy with my choice. It was so easy and something all palates could enjoy.

Serves 4-6
5 eggs spearated
zest 1 large lemon or orange
1 cup milk
1 3/4 ricotta cheese
1 cup all-purpose flour, sifted
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 cup sugar
dash salt

Preheat griddle or skillet on medium heat.

Mix the egg yolks. Sift and mix the dry ingredients and combine with egg yolks, lemon or orange zest, milk and ricotta cheese.

Beat the egg whites until stiff. Gently fold into the egg-ricotta batter. Lightly oil griddle and pour a pancake-sized amount onto girddle with a 1/2 cup measuring scoop. Cook until bubbles form. Flip and cook other side until golden.

Serve with warm homemade maple syrup.

Tip: This souffle style pancake will melt in your mouth. Flip only once and don't flatten the pancakes after flipping. This keeps it nice and light.

This needs a good, large sized lemon for the right effect. Please, please use ricotta cheese (found next to the shredded cheese section of your grocery store). Substitutes just won't do this recipe justice.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

For the Love of Housewares

I recently had a birthday. This will be my last year to live up my twenties and I've decided that it's going to be really great.

My Husband and some very sweet friends made my birthday very special. It was nothing extravagant (this is the way I like it), but they let me know I am loved.

My dear friend Amanda gave me this beautiful red pitcher, with an even more special note, because "she knows how much I like hoursewares." Don't you love it when friends just get you?

It's been sitting on my kitchen table for a week, unused, because I like staring at it. So I thought you might like to too.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Preserved Goodness

Remember my tip about always keeping lemons on hand? In fact, in my new Ina Garten Cookbook she suggests that you should always keep lemons and fresh parmesan on hand at all times. I'd have to agree with her! Well, I thought I'd help out a little bit and suggest preserving your lemons so you feel like it's easier to always keep them on hand. Check out the Williams Sonoma site for a great way to preserve your lemons so you can have them accessible at any time.

Friday, February 12, 2010

A Lover's Treat

I'm always surprised how many people don't realize how easy it is to make chocolate covered strawberries. These would make such a nice (and easy) dessert for your special someone, on a special day.

Perfect Chocolate Dipped Strawberries
Small Batch:

2 pints strawberries, room temperature
6 oz milk chocolate chips
6 oz semi-sweet chocolate chips
2 tbls shortening

Rinse berries and let dry on paper towels for a couple of hours until they're completely dry. Line bottom of baking sheet with waxed paper and place in freezer. Slowly melt chocolate chips in the microwave, stir in shortening until smooth. Remove baking sheet from freezer. Hold each berry by stem and dip in chocolate to cover about two-thirds of the berry. Place berries on baking sheet. Let berries stand at room temperature to harden for at least an hour. Eat within 24 hours. Never refrigerate!

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Customized Valentine

I've never been very fond of the conversation hearts that line the aisles for Valentine's Day, but when I saw this over at I couldn't resist. Try taking a box, lightly sand off the message with a fine grater, and use a food coloring marker to write your own message. Maybe you have an inside joke together? or words that trigger a memory? or funny pet names? The ideas are limitless.
Side note: If you're a fan, I figured you would want to know that my friend Jessica mentioned that the sweetheart brand changed the flavor of their conversation hearts and they just aren't the same.
Another good reason to check out they have a link to create a customized crossword puzzle. You can fill it with clues centered around your relationship.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Valentine's for kids

I'm loving this idea over at Martha for Valentine's Day treat packages. What a fun way to involve your kids in love day and a great craft to keep them busy for the afternoon.
All you need is to cut out a picture of your child, scan and print onto heavy cardstock. Let your child write a cute message and attach to bags of sweets. That easy, that cute.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010


I feel like lately I've had to replace a lot of my everyday kitchenwear. Not only am I in need of flatware (see this post - thanks for all the ideas btw!), but I'm also desperately in need of new glasses and pots and pans. Well, I am happy to say that I finally found some new everyday glassware. Everytime I looked at buying new glasses I felt like I would just break them too easily (I'm pretty clumsy). That is until I found Pottery Barns Cafe Glassware. I love seeing them everytime I open up my cupboard.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Valentine Dinner

I think the trick to making a really good meal is finding the perfect balance for your palette. I love my new cookbook, because you can find great menu ideas that do just that.

The first recipe that caught my eye was the Tuscan Lemon Chicken. So easy and so good. When combined with Confetti Corn and Stephmodo's Herb Roasted Potatoes it was perfection.

Really, the best part about this meal is that I didn't have to pre-plan my menu. I just searched for recipes for items I already had on hand.
This meal is definitely going to be a staple at my house, and for those of you celebrating Valentines Day at home, this would be sure to impress.

Friday, February 5, 2010


I saw this recipe over at Sweet Paul and figured it was so easy that I didn't have much to lose by trying it. It literally took me 4 minutes to whip up and throw in the oven. The only change I made was that I only cooked it for 20 minutes instead of the suggested 30.

It's nothing to fawn over, but is actually quite good. It would shine best served with ice cream and chocolate sauce on top. Keep this recipe in mind when you need something quick and easy.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Back To Basics

A new cookbook it just what I needed to get me out of the funk I'm in. I had this book in my hands for one day and had already tried 3 recipes, all with acclomades. In Ina Garten's Back to Basics she leaves us with great tips, menu 's and ideas of what to keep stocked in our pantries and refridgerators to prepare a good meal at a moments notice. Many of her recipes have items that I generally keep stocked up on and every recipe has a picture, which is a must for me. Trust me, get it and you'll love it.

FYI - It's currently at Coscto for $19.99
This would make a great Valentine's Day gift for those who love to cook.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Restaurant Love

I had the best girls night out last weekend. My sister and I first went out for manicures. I don't typically get a manicure, but it really does make you feel girly, and for $10 it makes for some nice girl time. Afterwards we headed over to Cannella's for some fabulous dinner. We started out with the risotto cakes, I highly recommend them. Everything else was good, I just wish we left room for dessert. I couldn't help but oogle all the sweet goodness at others' tables. Next time I think I'll go for appetizers and dessert only. Check it out here. I also hear their outdoor dining in the summer is fantastic. You'll have a nice view of the main library in downtown Salt Lake.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010


I came across another fabulous kitchen via A Delightful Blog. It's seriously gorgeous. Would you cook more if your space looked like this? I'm going through a dry spell and haven't cooked much lately. I did buy a new cookbook in hopes that it will kick me in gear. If it goes well, trust me, you'll hear about it.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Decisions, Decisions...

I am in some serious need of various everyday kitchen ware. Specifically flatware. What remains of my existing flatware (does anyone understand how forks just dissapear?) is sparse and in bad condition, considering I got only a cheap set for my wedding 8 years ago. Yes 8! don't judge.
So I've started the search, but my problem is that I don't want another cheap set, nor do I want to spend $200! Why do I feel like there is no middle ground here?

I just want something classic, simple, and long lasting. Crate and Barrel has some great options, and while I was in Chicago I checked them out and they are beautiful, but seriously! it's outrageous to charge that much for utensils! Anyone else have good luck on the subject?

Friday, January 29, 2010

Valentine's for Him or Her

Valentines can be such a fun holiday. Really the hardest part can be finding that perfect gift. As usual, my ideas center around great food. So I thought I'd share some gift ideas that anyone would love, male or female.

How fun would it be to sign up for couples cooking lessons? There are numerous places around the Salt Lake Valley that offer them. Try Les Madeleines (I hear great things about them), Sur La Table, or Caputo's Market & Deli, to name a few.

For a fun and creative gift, head on over to Color Me Mine and paint a pretty plate, then top it off with some homemade sugar cookies. Trust me, they'll notice all the effort that went into this gift. Or even better, make a date of it and do both projects together!

I love this idea I found over at Stephmodo - Print up a t-shirt declaring your love for your Valentine, but wait for a big reveal by keeping it under wraps (hide under your coat) until you go out to dinner (may I suggest Stoneground) and when you sit down take off your coat. I bet they get a kick out of it!

I know a box of chocolates is a bit cliche, but if you were to give me a box from Condies Chocolates it would be worth every calorie. They really are the best, and I happen to know the family that runs it. Trust them when they say that they really do hand dip every chocolate (they even taught me how).

If you want to keep it simple, cook a great dinner at home and avoid the long waiting lists at restaurants. I've been dying to try this simple french meal from Stephmodo (can you tell I love her blog?). Instead of spending a bunch of money on gifts, try giving your Valentine a thoughtful card and let them know how much you love them.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Cooking Lessons

My husbands parent's live a few hours South of Chicago, so we made a quick road trip down to see them. It has been a year since I visited, so it was nice to give them a big hug. Before they knew we were coming out they had asked a family to come and teach them how to make tamales.
It turned out to be a fun cooking lesson for everybody.

Making tamales is quite the process, and I now understand why you only make them for special occasions. I also quickly realized why you wouldn't be able to just follow a recipe and figure it out on your own.

Just to give you an idea of the process; first you boil the meat for 2 hours, then you spend another 2 hours prepping and assembling the tamales, then another 2 hours to steam them. It took up all of Saturday morning, but it was really fun and the final product made it totally worth it. Can you believe this was my first time eating a tamale? I have a feeling I won't be able to eat one from a restaurant because I know it just won't be the same.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Chicago Style

My first adventure in Chicago was tasting Giordanos Famous Stuffed Pizza. The waiter told us that they put 4 pounds of cheese on every pizza! Seriously?! That means that in my one piece of pizza I ate a 1/2 pound of cheese. I kind of wish I didn't know that, but it was totally worth it! Guess what? They'll ship a pizza any where in the US! For a special occasion that would be really fun.

If you ever find yourself in Chicago, try Rosebud for an upscale Italian meal. The restaurant was beautiful and the food was amazing.

Now, if only I could get to Chicago when it's warm!

Tuesday, January 26, 2010


I just returned from a quick trip to Chicago. The Husband had to go for work, so at the last minute I decided to tag along and enjoy the city while he sat in meetings. This was the view from our hotel room window looking over Michigan Avenue. It was breathtaking!

The white circular building at the bottom center of the picture is Crate and Barrel, which was four stories of heaven! Why can't we have great shopping like this in Utah?!

My quick weekend consisted of shopping, museums, great food, and then a drive further South to visit the in-laws. Don't worry, my next post will be all about the food, including some surprise cooking lessons.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Valentine's Day Prep

Seriously so cute. What a great Valentines day gift for your friends/neighbors/loved ones. Cute heart shaped brownies found via Twig & Thistle.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Sweet as pie...

You all know my love of pie. In fact, I've been dying to make my mini pies just so I can use these cute boxes found via Twig & Thistle. I'm thinking I could find a fun reason to give these out, say......Valentines Day?

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Jam Labels

I previously posed the question asking if anyone had ideas on a pretty way to package jam and I finally found the answer with this free download found on Creature Comforts Blog via A delightful blog. This would make a great hostess gift or favor at your next dinner party.