Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Halloween Treats

In honor of Halloween I want to post some fall treats that I've pinned recently.

How delicious does this Halloween Candy Corn Bark look? I REALLY am wishing I had some right now.

Halloween Candy Corn Bark from Mommy of Two Little Monkeys

One of my girlfriends is popcorn obsessed and I immediately thought of her after pinning this recipe for Maple Pecan Popcorn. It sounds like it's a breeze to make. This would be a great treat to wrap up in treat bags (like these) and hand out to guests at a fall get together.

Maple Pumpkin Spice Popcorn from Fresh Family Cooking

And then another muffin recipe I want to try. I'm hoping to make these tonight or tomorrow for our new neighbors. I hope they have that perfect fall flavor that I'm after.

Loaded Apple Cider Oatmeal Muffins from How Sweet It Is

Happy Halloween everyone, remember to eat some candy. Let me know if any of you make any of these yummies!

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Mandarin Orange, Cranberry and Green Salad

Last night I hosted a small dinner party (I posted our dessert yesterday) and our main dish was my Mom's delicious fish tacos, but I added this green salad. Any recipe from With Style & Grace is always great and this particular salad is her Mom's own recipe.

I loved all the sweet tastes in this salad, but then you had the crunch of the toasted almonds and that mixture made for a great allover bite. I was a little nervous to use canned Mandarin oranges as this was my first time doing so. I don't know something about canned fruit just kind of grosses me out, but I'm happy to say I really didn't think they tasted bad or different from fresh orange slices.


Mom's Orange and Cranberry Salad from  With Style & Grace

Mom’s Orange and Cranberry Salad Recipe from With Style & Grace
  • 1 garlic clove, chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup agave, honey or sugar (I used honey)
  • pepper to taste
  • 4 cups lettuce mix
  • 1 small can of mandarin oranges, drained
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/4 cup slivered almonds, toasted
To make the dressing, add ingredients to a shaker/mason jar and shake or add to a bowl and whisk. Place in the refrigerator until ready to dress.
To prepare the salad, put the lettuce in salad bowl and add mandarin oranges, and cranberries. Mix the dressing before drizzling a little over the salad and toss to combine. Add more dressing to your liking. Sprinkle toasted almond pieces and serve immediately.
Make Ahead Tips - Toast your almonds and make your salad dressing ahead of time!

Monday, October 29, 2012


Can I tell you how excited I am over this Pear Walnut Spice Cake? OMG guys you need to put this on your "Must Bake" list stat. It's utterly delicious. Joy the Baker is quite the magic baker and I'm so glad I saw her post on this cake.

Enjoy! (I have I have!)

Pear Spice Cake with Walnut Praline Topping from Joy the Baker

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground allspice
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 sticks (1 cup) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3 large eggs, separated
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1  cups buttermilk
  • 3 pears, peeled, cored and diced into roughly 1/2-inch pieces (about 1 to 1 1/4 cups of fruit)
  • 1 cup walnuts (3 ounces), toasted , cooled, and finely chopped
Make cake:
Put oven rack in middle position and preheat oven to 350°F. Butter and flour bundt pan.
Sift together flour,  baking soda, baking powder, and salt into a bowl. Beat together butter, sugar, cinnamon, allspice, and nutmeg in another bowl with an electric mixer at medium-high speed until fluffy, about 3 minutes in a standing mixer or 4 with a handheld. Add yolks 1 at a time, beating well after each addition, then beat in vanilla. Reduce speed to low, then add flour mixture and buttermilk alternately in batches, mixing well after each addition.  Fold in pear pieces and chopped walnuts.
Beat egg whites in another bowl with cleaned beaters until they just hold stiff peaks, then fold whites into batter gently but thoroughly.
Spoon batter into pan, smoothing top, and bake until a wooden pick or skewer comes out clean, 40 to 50 minutes. Cool cake in pan on a rack 10 minutes, then invert onto rack and cool completely.
Walnut Praline Topping
  • 3/4 cup (packed) golden brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1/4 cup whipping cream
  • 1 cups walnuts, roughly chopped, toasted
Stir golden brown sugar, whipping cream and  1/2 cup butter in heavy medium saucepan over medium-high heat until smooth. Boil 3 minutes, stirring often. Stir in walnut pieces. Spoon warm topping over warm cake. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Scarf Obessed

I loveeee me a good scarf, just LOVE. I've always loved them, but my real obsession started when my sweet sister and brother-in-law gifted me a Theodoro and Callum scarf last Christmas. Scarfs are the perfect easy accessory to throw on to really amp up your outfit.

Here are some of my latest favorites...

I pinned this Gap snood a few days ago after seeing it on A Piece of Toast (Save this blog friends, it's great!) and hoping to check it out in person soon.

Tow-tone waffle cowlneck from Gap

I saw this Madwell snood in person this week (FW peeps, our time will come soon! The Madewell store at University Village is coming along!) and it's so comfy and cozy, but still remains chic.

Fuzzstripe Circle Scarf from Madewell

And here is a Theodora & Callum scarf, the brand that started my real the tribal feel to this one and did I mention that their scarfs are extra large which is great especially when traveling!

Black Multi Tempe Rug Blanket Scarf from Theodora & Callum

Which is your favorite?

Thursday, October 25, 2012

It's Crispy Chicken Kind Of Thursday

Last night I had so much fun cooking for our sweet friends who just had a baby girl. Her name is Georgia Grace, is that not the cutest?!

I made these Crispy Chicken Skewers from How Sweet It Is (I've said this before, but this is one of my fav food blogs. Jessica's writing is great, as are her recipes!) to go along with roasted veggies and a green salad with my everyday dressing. Salad toppings this time included sliced cherry tomatoes, diced red onion and Tour's mix. For the veggies I did a mix of brussel sprouts, butternut squash and cauliflower. I grated fresh Parmesan over the veggies once they came out of the oven to give them a little bit more yum. Thank you to TJ's (Trader Joe's) for having such great pre-cut/packaged produce selections!

But back to the chicken...I love this recipe because it's like you are eating fried chicken without all the fat and grease. This would be a fun recipe for kiddos to help with too since you get to dip the chicken into different mixtures.


Crispy Chicken Skewers from How Sweet It Is

(As seen in picture Jessica skewered her chicken, I took this step out, but either way is great!)
serves 2-4
4 large boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into cubes or strips
3 egg whites
2 cups panko breadcrumbs
1/4 cup whole wheat pastry flour (any flour should work)
1 tablespoon BBQ seasoning 
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
Preheat oven to 450 degrees. 
Cut chicken into cubes or strips. In a bowl, combine egg whites and lightly beat with a fork. In another bowl, add panko, flour, 1/4 teaspoon each of salt and pepper, and 1/2 tablespoon BBQ seasoning. Lay a wire rack on a baking sheet and spray it with non-stick spray.
Season chicken with remaining salt, pepper and BBQ seasoning. Dip each piece in egg whites then in the panko mixture and lay on the wire rack. Spray with non-stick spray or spritz with olive oil.
Bake for 12 minutes, flip over, and bake for 12 more. 
***Jessica's tip to spray the chicken cubes/strips with non-stick spray is genius! It really helps them get that golden brown color that we all know and love.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Latest Favorites...

I have another installment today of my latest favorites. Tell me what are your latest favorites?

Did anyone take advantage of the Shopbop sale last week? I certainly did and am OBSESSED with my purchase. I splurged on this Vince sweater jacket and I know it's a piece I'll wear over and over again. It's ridiculously comfortable.

Vince Honeycomb Knit Jacket via Shopbop

I'm loving these new teardrop bangles from Margaret Elizabeth too. I would love to add a few of these to my arm candy stack, particularly the Labradorite (shown below) and Rainbow Moonstone colors.

Margaret Elizabeth Labradorite Teardrop Bangle

And last but not least, this leather (It's even vegan!) peplum top. My stylish gal pal Morgan told me I had to have it! Hopefully it will make its way into my closet ASAP. 

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Pumpkin Chocolate-Chip Brownies

If you need a quick pumpkin dessert that is relatively healthy these brownies are for you. The whole process took me under an hour which made them that much sweeter.

Happy Baking!

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Brownies via Pennies on a Platter

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Brownies 

via Pennies on a Platter

Yield: 24 small brownies

1/2 cup pumpkin puree
1 whole egg
2 egg whites
1 tbsp vegetable or canola oil (I used canola)
1 cup flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground allspice
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp salt
2/3 cup brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 350˚F.  Line an 11″- x 7″-inch pan with parchment paper.
In a large bowl, combine pumpkin puree, eggs and oil until smooth.  Set aside.
In a separate medium bowl, mix together the flour, baking powder, spices, salt and brown sugar.  Add to the wet ingredients and mix until thoroughly incorporated.  Stir in the chocolate chips.
Pour into prepared pan and spread evenly.  Bake for 15 – 20 minutes or until passes toothpick test.  Cool completely before cutting.

***I doubled this recipe and baked them in a 9x13 pan and had to bake them for 25-30 minutes!

Monday, October 22, 2012

The Perfect Fall Cookie

Sorry again for the silence over here, things have been CRAAAZY lately, but I'm hoping to get back to regular schedule posting this week.

To start off the week I have a delicious cookie recipe for you all courtesy of Lovin' From the Oven. I've found many a good sweet treat recipe on this blog so be sure to check it out.

These Molasses Spice cookies are the perfect fall cookies, they are chewy and soft and so comforting. The dough is excellent as well!

Molasses Spice Cookies via Lovin' From the Oven

Molasses Spice Cookies via Lovin' From the Oven

  • 3/4 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup sugar, plus additional for rolling
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/3 cup molasses
  • 2 1/4 cup flour
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp ginger
  • 1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp nutmeg

  1. Preheat oven to 375. 
  2. Cream together the butter and both sugars. Mix in the egg, vanilla, and molasses.
  3. Stir in the flour, baking soda, salt, ginger, cinnamon and nutmeg.
  4. Roll the dough into tablespoon sized balls and roll in sugar. Drop onto baking sheet, at least two inches apart.
  5. Bake for 11 minutes.


Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Roasted Tomato Basil Sauce

I'd pinned this tomato sauce recipe awhile back and it finally made it on our menu this week. I love this recipe not only for its taste, but also for its ability to be made ahead of time and for its versatility. I served this over sautéed shrimp, but it would be just as good over grilled chicken or as a pizza sauce too.


Roasted Tomato Sauce via With Style & Grace

Roasted Tomato Basil Sauce from With Style & Grace


- 3 pints cherry tomatoes (Rinse before using.)
- 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 4 cloves garlic, minced (I keep a big jar of pre-minced garlic in my fridge at all times!)
- 1 tablespoon salt (I used truffle salt.)
- 3/4 cup fresh basil, chopped (When in doubt go "steal" some basil from your Mama's herb garden!)


Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Place rinsed tomatoes on a baking sheet and add garlic, salt, and olive oil. Use your hands to make sure all the tomatoes are evenly coated.

Bake/roast for 15-30 minutes or until tomatoes have browned and softened.

Remove and let tomato mixture cool then place mixture into a blender with chopped basil. Puree to your liking.

Top over shrimp, grilled chicken, use as a pizza...the options are endless!

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Latest Favorites...

Just a few of my latest favorites for you all today...enjoy!

By now I'm sure all of you have heard of the new Aerin line at Estee Lauder, if you haven't you must be living under a rock. Aerin seems like one of the chicest woman ever and her makeup line follows suit. The Perfect Nude lip gloss is my new obsession.

Aerin Perfect Nude Lip Gloss via Neiman Marcus

I was in the market for a new perfume and thought I would get the new Gucci fragrance, but after smelling the new Balenciaga fragrance I was sold. It doesn't hurt that the bottle is basically a work of art  either.

Balenciaga Florabotanica Eau de Parfum Spray via Neiman Marcus

I'm also seriously OBSESSED with these Dannijo earrings. You all know me and my love for statement earrings and OMG I keep dreaming about this pair. Aren't they stunning?

Dannijo Siobhan Earrings via Dannijo

Monday, October 15, 2012

Pumpkin Muffin Goodness

Fall is here and that means pumpkin everything! I was so glad that these pumpkin muffins turned out as well as they did, beware though, they are addicting. These are moist, delicious, and healthy. Thank you Gina for the amazing recipe!

Pumpkin Nut Muffins via Skinnytaste


  • 1 1/4 cup whole wheat flour
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 1/2 cups canned pumpkin (not pumpkin pie filling)
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 2 large egg whites
  • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • baking spray
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans


Preheat oven to 350°. Spray a muffin tin with non stick spray for easy removal.

In a medium bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking soda, pumpkin spice, nutmeg, cinnamon, and salt with a wire whisk. Set aside.

In a large bowl mix pumpkin puree, oil, egg whites and vanilla; beat at medium speed until thick. Scrape down sides of the bowl.

Add flour mixture to the wet mixture, then blend at low speed until combined; do not over mix. Fold in chopped nuts.

Pour batter into prepared muffin tin and bake on the center rack for 24 - 26 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Let them cool at least 15 minutes before serving.

Makes 12 muffins.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Dresses, Dresses, Dresses

My SIL has an upcoming wedding and needs a fab dress that won't break the bank. I paroozed around  and found some great options. All have sleeves since that is oh so on trend right now and is a trend that she particularly loves. What's your favorite? I think mine is the Dot Illusion dress from Vince Camuto. Hope some of you can scoop one (or more!) of these up too!

Straight Lace Dress via Zara

Dot Illusion Dress via Vince Camuto

Puff Sleeve Dress via Zara

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Jeweler Spotlight...Katherine Gainey Designs

Sooo the arm party trend carries on and I'm excited to add these babies to my stack. My SIL (YES, the LovelyB one) made me aware of these African horn bracelets as the company was started by her BFF's sister. Katherine Gainey Designs not only has a great selection of jewelry (the horn bracelets being my fav though), but a portion of her proceeds go a organization that supports children called Empower African Children which is a win-win in my book!

via Katherine Gainey Designs

via Katherine Gainey Designs

Aren't these awesome? And what a great gift...never too early to start shopping for the holidays!

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

What I'm Cooking this Week...

I want to start doing a post each week about what I'm cooking each week, would you all like this? I hope so!

For lunches I'll be munching on this chickpea salad (It's my standby, I make this almost every week and I've gotten one of my SIL's hooked too.) and this wild rice salad which I've made only once before, but LOVED.

Wild Rice and Edamame Salad via Pixelated Crumb

For dinner lots of roasted veggies, roasted parm chicken, and chicken tetrazzini are in the mix.

Lightened Up Chicken Tetrazzini via Ingredients, Inc.

And I'm hoping to have a pumpkin muffin recipe by the end of the week for you all!

Monday, October 8, 2012

Lions, Tigers, and Bears Oh My!

Well not really bears, but you get the idea...

via Plush Embassy

via Solestruck

via Style Frizz

Hopefully these pictures give away where I've been for the past few weeks, but I'm back now and can't wait to get back to blogging.  Until tomorrow friends!