Vintage Rose Garden Tea Party

Vintage Rose Garden Tea Party

June is National Rose Month.  Did you know that on November 20, 1986 then President Ronald Reagan signed a resolution making the rose the national floral emblem?  And he signed it at a ceremony held where else but the White House Rose Garden!

Almost everyone loves roses, these beautiful blooms come in many sizes and colors, and have a wonderful scent.   They are the symbol of love and romance, after all who can resist a gift of roses from their significant other?

Celebrate National Rose Month with a Vintage Rose Garden Tea Party!  This theme can be used for anything from an intimate tea party for two, a bridal or baby shower, birthday party, and what ever occasion you like.  Roses and tea parties are an awesome combination.  Here are some ideas to inspire you!

 Garden Tea Party
Style Me Pretty

Set up tea service on an old dresser. You can paint the mirror with black chalkboard paint and write or draw anything you want.  Drawers filled with roses make it extra sweet.

This would work well for a small get together, perhaps a tea for the bridal party.

 Garden Tea Party
Party Inspirations

Use a wheeled tea cart for sweets.

 Garden Tea Party
The Glamorous Housewife

For small parties, like a tea for two, forget table and chairs, spread out a pretty floral blanket and add some pillows for an intimate tea party.

 Garden Tea Party
Lady Gray Dreams

Set up an intimate tea under a rose covered arbor or between the roses in your rose garden.

 Garden Tea Party
Love My Dress

For larger parties set up a tent and decorate with paper lanterns and bunting.  You can set up a buffet or place stands of sandwiches and sweet treats on each table.

Learn how to make your own tiered stands click here!

 Garden Tea Party
The Vintage Table

A vintage tea party isn’t complete without pretty dainty cups and tea pots.  Find them at discount stores, thrift shops, and even garage sales.

You can use them to serve tea or as decor!

 Garden Tea Party
Catch My Party

Setting up a beverage station is a great idea for a children’s tea party.  Adding lace makes it super cute!

Garden Tea PartyFinger sandwiches are a tea party must.  Serve them on tiered stands decorated with fresh roses.

Learn how to make your own tiered stands click here!

Garden Tea Party
Fine Cooking

French Macaroons make a nice touch, but they can be pricey.
I use the frozen ones I get from Trader Joe’s they are very good.
Or you can make your own.  Here’s a video tutorial from Fine Cooking.

Garden Tea Party
First Home Love Life

Every tea party must have scones.  Here’s a recipe from First Home Love Life.

Click here for recipe!

Garden Tea Party
The View from Great Island

Scones need jam and clotted cream.  Here’s a recipe from The View from Great Island.  For recipe click here!

Garden Tea Party
The Vintage Table

Strawberry Shortcake is another tea time favorite and baking things in jars is very popular right now. Combine the two to make a great party favor!

Here’s a recipe from The Vintage Table.  Click here!

Triple Chocolate Chip Cookies

Triple Chocolate Chip Cookies

Everyone loves Chocolate Chip Cookies.  It’s the world’s most popular cookie!  Last week I shared the recipe for The Neiman Marcus Chocolate Chip Cookie.  It is one of my favorites!  But sometimes I get a craving for more chocolate and that’s when the Triple Chocolate Chip Cookies come in handy.  They are simply delicious!

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I’m sure you’ve seen them at Starbuck’s and other retail bakeries.  I think there are even some packaged ones by Pepperidge Farms.  But nothing comes close to my Triple Chocolate Chip Cookies.  They’re definitely chocolaty but the white chocolate morsels I add give it that extra yum!  They like crunchy brownies with a kick of delicious white chocolate.  They go great with a cold glass of milk!

I use a chocolate cookie dough, milk chocolate chips, and white chocolate chips, that’s why they’re a triple treat!  I use the best ingredients I can find to make these cookies, skimping is not an option.  I use Guittard Unsweetened Cocoa Powder or Vallrhona Cocoa Powder.

Another tip for making bakery quality cookies is to have the proper tools.  In this case to make really good looking (and tasting) cookies you’ll need a measuring cups and spoons, mixing bowls, an electric mixer (a standing mixer is easier but costlier so a hand mixer works too), a 1 Oz. Scoop (they make the cookies all the same size) and a Silicone Baking Mat (or you can use parchment paper, either one works well, but the mat ends up cheaper in the long run and is definitely more eco-friendly).  I know it seems frivolous to buy these things specially if you don’t bake often.  I remember back in the day when we really didn’t have the extra money to spend on them (they were much more expensive then) I used to make do with whatever I had.  But these days with online shops and big box stores baking equipment has become much more affordable!

But you don’t have to rush out and buy mats, scoops, and whatever.  Use what you have or borrow from a baking friend or your mom!  Just make sure you use the best ingredients that you can find, that’s the most important thing!


Triple Chocolate Chip Cookies
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Servings
2 Dozen
Servings
2 Dozen
Triple Chocolate Chip Cookies
Print Recipe
Servings
2 Dozen
Servings
2 Dozen
Ingredients
Servings: Dozen
Instructions
  1. Cream butter and sugars together using medium speed of an electric mixer
  2. Beat in egg and vanilla
  3. In a small mixing bowl mix together flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and cocoa powder
  4. Mix into egg mixture - dough will form
  5. Stir in milk and white chocolate chips
  6. Pre-Heat oven to 300 degrees
  7. Using 1 Oz. scoop or a 2 tbs. measure drop a ball of dough onto a silicone mat or parchment covered baking sheet about 3" apart
  8. Gently flatten each ball with the back of a spoon to make a 2" circle
  9. Bake for 25 minutes - do not over bake
  10. Remove from oven and let cool on sheet for 5 minutes
  11. Transfer to cooling racks and let cool completely
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Broccoli Cranberry  Salad Recipes with Bacon and Walnuts

Broccoli Cranberry Salad Recipes with Bacon and Walnuts

I’ve been creating low carb broccoli dish for years, however typically not with cranberries, since the shop bought ones are filled with sugar. Since I started creating sugar-free dried cranberries recently, it had been time to alter up my broccoli dish instruction and add those in. when one or two experiments, this straightforward broccoli cranberry dish with bacon and walnuts has become a daily at our house.

When I was trying to find ways that to use my new sugar-free dried cranberries, i used to be torn regarding what quite cranberry dish recipes to form. Sweet or savory I’m therefore glad I settled on this broccoli dish with bacon. Give it a attempt. It simply may become a replacement favorite at your house, too. And, if you celebrate Christmas, you’ll love adding its red and inexperienced palette to your vacation table!

Making broccoli bacon dish could be a breeze. mix all the ingredients during a giant bowl, whisk the dressing during a tiny bowl, and blend ’em along. That’s it! This makes a good make-ahead or nightlong dish, and also the flavors get even higher if you refrigerate it for a moment. Healthy olivie dish could be a nice nightlong dish still. There are not any greens to wilt or get slimed, therefore it stores well and is totally fantastic consecutive day.

 

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Click here for Broccoli Cranberry Salad Recipes with Bacon and Walnuts!! Enjoy

 

INGREDIENTS

1 bunch Broccoli (chopped into small florets)
1/4 cup Red onion (sliced)
1/2 cup Sugar-free dried cranberries (or any dried cranberries)
1/2 cup Walnuts (chopped; or pumpkin seeds for nut-free)
1/2 cup Bacon bits (cooked)
1/2 cup Mayonnaise
1 tbsp Olive oil
1 tbsp Lemon juice
1 tsp Orange zest
1/2 tsp Garlic powder
1 1/2 tbsp Sweetener of choice (optional, to taste – preferably powdered or liquid*)
1/2 tsp Poppy seeds (optional)
Sea salt (to taste)
Black pepper (to taste)

INSTRUCTIONS

1. Combine the chopped broccoli, red onion, cranberries, walnuts, and bacon bits in a large bowl.
2. In a small bowl, whisk together the mayonnaise, olive oil, lemon juice, garlic powder, orange zest, sweetener, and poppy seeds (if using). Adjust sweetener to taste. Season with sea salt and black peper to taste.
3. Stir the dressing into the vegetable mixture. Refrigerate for an hour for better flavor (optional).

Broccoli Cranberry Salad Recipes with Bacon and Walnuts
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Broccoli Cranberry Salad Recipes with Bacon and Walnuts
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Almost Homemade Chocolate Cake

Almost Homemade Chocolate Cake

We love Chocolate Cake!  It’s one of my favorites!  I mean seriously what’s not to love?

So whenever I get hungry for a quick fix of chocolate cake I grab a box of my favorite mix, add a few extras, and bake an almost homemade chocolate cake. Of course I could make it from scratch, but sometimes I just don’t have the time.  When I’m pressed for time it’s either box mix or make a run to the store and many times it’s just easier to use the cake mix.

But just because I use a cake mix that doesn’t mean my cake has to taste like it came out of a box.  By adding and substituting a few things anyone can make a box mix cake taste like it was made from scratch!

Here’s how I make my almost homemade chocolate cake.  I’m pretty sure you’ll have the ingredients in your kitchen.  I usually have a box or two of cake mix, one yellow and one chocolate, and a couple of cans of frosting in my pantry; I like to stock up on them when they’re on sale.

What you’ll need:

1 Box Devil’s Food Cake Mix – or any type of chocolate – any brand will work

1 Cup Milk

1/3 Cup Butter, melted

5 Large Eggs

2 Tsp. Vanilla Extract

2 Tsp. Instant Espresso Powder

2   9″ Round Pans

Raspberry Preserves

1 Can Chocolate Frosting

Cooking Spray

Here’s what to do:

Heat oven to 350º

Grease the 2 pans

Substitute the water the box mix calls for with milk, and use melted butter instead of the oil

Use 5 eggs instead of however many the box mix calls for

Place the mix, milk, butter, and eggs in a bowl and mix on medium speed with electric mixer

Stir in vanilla extract and espresso powder

Pour equal amounts of batter into the 2 pans

Bake in oven for 25 minutes or until a tester comes out clean

Remove from oven and let cool about 10 minutes

Flip cakes onto a rack and cool completely

When cakes are completely cooled use a wire or sharp knife to level the tops and make them flat

Dust off any crumbs

Place 1 layer on cake plate, bottom side on the plate

Spread a thin layer of raspberry preserve on top to seal the crumbs

Spread a thin layer of raspberry preserve to the top of the second layer

Spread a layer of chocolate icing on the first layer

Flip the second layer over and place it on top of the first layer – your cake should be top sides together

Spread a thin layer of raspberry preserve on the top and sides of your cake – this seals in any crumbs

Frost the top and side of your cake

Garnish with fresh fruit or whatever you like before serving.

 

This cake is really great with a scoop of vanilla ice cream or a cold glass of milk!

 

 

Easy Salt & Pepper Shrimp Recipe

Easy Salt & Pepper Shrimp Recipe

Salt & Pepper Shrimp Recipe

One of my favorite Chinese seafood dishes is Salted Pepper Shrimp, we used to order it every time we dined at a Chinese restaurant.  Since I found a recipe for it we can enjoy it at home.  I modified it to fit our tastes and I think made it a bit simpler to make.  Served over steamed white rice it’s yummy!

Ingredients:
1 lb.  Medium to Large shrimp – peeled and deveined
1 tbls. sea salt
1/2 cup corn starch
2 tbls. ground white pepper
2 tbls. ground black pepper
1 tbls. garlic powder

3 tbls. chopped green onions
2 tbls. minced garlic
1/4 +  cup peanut oil

Directions:

Place shrimp in a small bowl and cover with warm water
Add sea salt and let soak for 30 minutes to 1 hour

Salt & Pepper Shrimp

In a shallow bowl mix together corn starch,  1 tbls. each of white and black peppers, and garlic powder

Drain shrimp and lightly pat dry with a paper towel

Heat peanut oil in wok or large frying pan on medium heat until hot

Coat each shrimp in cornstarch mixture and place in wok

Cook until shrimp turns pink – turn halfway for even cooking – you may need to add more peanut oil if it gets too dry

Place cooked shrimp on paper towel to drain – Do not turn stove off

If pan is dry add a tbls. more peanut oil – add mince garlic and stir until it starts turning golden

Add fried shrimp back into pan

Add chopped green onions and stir til green onions turn bright green and starts to soften

Remove from heat and serve over white rice

Enjoy!




salt & pepper shrimp
Easy Salt & Pepper Shrimp Recipe
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
4 Servings 15 Minutes
Cook Time Passive Time
15 Minutes 1 Hour
Servings Prep Time
4 Servings 15 Minutes
Cook Time Passive Time
15 Minutes 1 Hour
salt & pepper shrimp
Easy Salt & Pepper Shrimp Recipe
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
4 Servings 15 Minutes
Cook Time Passive Time
15 Minutes 1 Hour
Servings Prep Time
4 Servings 15 Minutes
Cook Time Passive Time
15 Minutes 1 Hour
Ingredients
Servings: Servings
Instructions
  1. Place shrimp in a small bowl and cover with warm water
  2. Add sea salt and let soak for 30 minutes to 1 hour
  3. In a shallow bowl mix together corn starch, 1 tbls. each of white and black peppers, and garlic powder
  4. Drain shrimp and lightly pat dry with a paper towel
  5. Heat peanut oil in wok or large frying pan on medium heat until hot
  6. Coat each shrimp in cornstarch mixture and place in wok
  7. Cook until shrimp turns pink - turn halfway for even cooking - you may need to add more peanut oil if it gets too dry
  8. Place cooked shrimp on paper towel to drain - Do not turn stove off
  9. If pan is dry add a tbls. more peanut oil - add mince garlic and stir until it starts turning golden
  10. Add fried shrimp back into pan
  11. Add chopped green onions and stir til green onions turn bright green and starts to soften
  12. Remove from heat and serve over white rice
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Lebanese 7 Spices Mix

LebaneseI’ve heard it said many times that Lebanese cooking is the best cuisine the Middle Eastern countries have to offer.  Lebanese restaurants are the go to places when one has a yen for Arabic or Middle Eastern food.  This seems to be one of the few things that Arabs from around the world can mostly agree on.

I must confess that in my experience this is usually true.  Lebanese cooking is definitely top notch and any where we travel we look for a Lebanese restaurant.  Among my favorites are Al Halabi in Dubai’s Mall of the Emirates and Wafi Gourmet in both the Dubai Mall and Wafi Mall; Reem Al Bawadi in Amman; and Mandaloun not far from the Spanish Steps in Rome.

But what makes Lebanese cuisine so great?  I’m not exactly sure, but I believe that one of its secrets are the spices they use.  Their Lebanese 7 Spices Mix in my opinion is the key to their delicious entrees.

Lebanese 7 Spices Mix contains many of the spices found in cuisine in and around that region.  It has cumin and coriander for sure and 6 other spices making it actually an 8 spices mix.  Why it’s called 7 Spices is beyond me unless the ground black pepper isn’t counted as a spice.

lebaneseAnyway whatever you call it seasoning grilled meats and stews with this Lebanese 7 Spices Mix makes for a delicious meal!  I like to keep a jar on hand and use it in marinades and of course for one of the family’s favorite dishes Mesaf or Fatiyeh, a dish of stewed meat in yogurt sauce.

You can mix up  a batch of Lebanese 7 Spices Mix to add to your stews too.  Just be sure you store it in an airtight container.  I use pint sized mason jars to store all my spice mixes.

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Lebanese 7 Spices Mix
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Lebanese 7 Spices Mix
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Ingredients
Servings:
Instructions
  1. Combine all ingredients into a small bowl and stir until well blended.
  2. Transfer to an airtight container for storage.
Recipe Notes

To use in rubs or marinades stir 2 Tbs. Mix into 1 Tbs. Olive Oil and rub into meats.  Or add the same proportion of mix to oil and combine with 1 Tbs. Vinegar to make marinade.

When using in stews or other dishes 1 Tbs. of mix is for each serving.

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