Wednesday, July 30, 2014

new found love...

anyone who knows me knows i enjoy wine.  i am particularly fond of red wine.  i love a beautiful glass
of red wine with a great italian dinner or a hearty steak.  i also enjoy a crisp glass of white wine on a sunny blue summer day, perhaps a pinot grigio or sauvignon blanc.  until now, i have never been a fan of rose.

a few weeks back we were having dinner on the waterfront on a beautiful summer evening.  i got to talking to the bartender about wines etc.  on the menu that evening was a rose that he assured me i  should try.  it was wonderful.  unfortunately,  i have been unable to find it.   if you are lucky enough to find it, you should certainly give it a try.  it was called txomin etxaniz, getaria rose wine from the basque area of spain.  it has green apple and citrus flavors and comes in a long neck bottle which was also lovely.    since i was unable to find it i have tried several other rose.  ahhh summertime... where everything goes.   

i understand in france rose is practically all they drink in the summertime, so in honor of our upcoming trip we have enjoyed many warm, breezy, nights sipping beautiful rose wine and watching the sunset.

a couple of my favorites have been:

a pale floral scented wine with tangy white berry flavors

this screw top bottle makes this perfect for picnics

at $11 this one is a steal

a sweet cherry flavor with a kick of pepper spice



cheers,

love sent, xo






Tuesday, July 29, 2014

some fave's lately...


what i am eating...  via sweet paul

Grilled Halloumi and Tomato Salad with Lemon and Honey Vinaigrette 

Serves 4   




16 slices Halloumi cheese ( 2 packs)
olive oil
3 yellow heirloom tomatoes
16 small lettuce leafs
1 tablespoon honey
juice from 1/2 lemon
1 tablespoon finely chopped parsley
1/3 cup olive oil
salt and pepper
pinch of red chili flakes(optional)
1.Brush the cheese with a little olive oil.
2.Grill the cheese until golden on each side, if you use a grill pan you will get really nice grill marks.
3.Slice the tomatoes.
4.On 4 plates stack tomatoes, lettuce and cheese.
5.In a small bowl mix together honey, lemon, parsley and oil.

 
6.Season and drizzle over the salad.


what i am planning for the next birthday cake
dreamiest cake i have ever seen.



what i am putting on my wish list
loving this necklace    it is so simple and perfect.   may all your wishes come true

what i am signing up for
the coolest cooler ever.

why i continue
#8 the reason i really blog

what i am reading
not exactly light summer reading but ...  it makes you realize the intense suffering of some innocent
children.   certainly thought provoking.

what i am cleaning with
my new favorite go to cleaner for just about everything   this stuff smells amazing.  so far i have tried
basil, parsley and lemon.  i am obsessed.

what i am thinking about
how to navigate dreams that don't come true  after all, we all have them.

what i am playing on repeat
i should have know that kind of feeling...


love sent, xo


Monday, July 28, 2014

around here...

saturday was the perfect summer afternoon when the sun beats down and swells the air with heat.  the perfect time for a late day picnic.


                                                                and the sunset was spectacular...
                     
                        this was another great and easy dessert that also holds up well on picnics.
                                                              recipe via kiss my spatula




       

                      watermelon salad with feta, basil,  lemon and chopped chili lime cashews.
                                            this was super refreshing and really healthy.


    this simple appetizer is packed with flavor.  i was able to find some organic figs at whole foods.
    these are stuffed with blue cheese and then wrapped in prosciutto.  bake at 400 degrees for 15 minutes


     i have tried lots of ice pops this summer and these strawberry cheesecake ice pops were delicious.
     this particular recipe calls for greek yogurt.  i would rather replace the yogurt with whipped cream
     i know, a far less healthy version but it's much richer and after all its summer. 


                               and yes, we all toast summer!!!  this is probably one of my favorite
                               photos so far this summer.  love them!!!


        


 hope you are enjoying yours.  

love sent, xo

Thursday, July 24, 2014

farmers market inspiration...

 after spending a fair amount of time on sunday at the farmers market i had to figure out something 
super healthy to use all of the fresh produce.  this was really really good.

chopped thai salad with sesame garlic dressing






serves: 6

ingredients
 dressing:
•⅓ cup canola oil
•3 cloves garlic, peeled
•3 tablespoons low sodium soy sauce
•2 tablespoons water
•2 tablespoons white distilled vinegar
•2 tablespoons honey
•1 tablespoon sesame oil
•1 tablespoon lemongrass paste 

salad:
•16 ounces frozen shelled edamame
•5-6 cups baby kale shredded
•3 large carrots shredded
•2 bell peppers (1 red, 1 yellow) sliced very thin
•1 cup cilantro leaves chopped ( i used about 1/2 cup) i feel that cilantro is strong 
•3 green onions
•¾ cup cashews chopped (trader joe's thai lime and chili cashews are the best) 

instructions
1.puree all the dressing ingredients in a food processor until smooth. 
transfer to a dressing jar.
2.cook the edamame by boiling it for 3-5 minutes in a pot of boiling water. drain and allow it to cool. meanwhile, slice up the kale, carrots, peppers, cilantro leaves, and green onions into thin strips or shreds.
3.roughly chop cashews and edamame. toss the kale, carrots, peppers, cilantro, green onions, edamame, and cashews together until well combined. drizzle with the dressing, toss gently a few times, and serve immediately.

watermelon salad


the watermelon salad turned out much better than i thought it would.  the one we had over the weekend was superb and this attempt at duplication came out very very good.


grilled watermelon
coarse sea salt
ground pepper
home made ricotta (sort of the key ingredient)
heirloom tomatoes 
extra virgin olive oil 
balsamic vinegar 
chopped basil

slice the watermelon into slices.   pat it dry -  it is super wet so you might have to do this a few times.
brush it with olive oil and grill it for a few minutes look for the grill marks.  its delicate to you need to handle it carefully. then cut it into large cubes.
layer it with the ricotta and another slice of watermelon season with sea salt and pepper.  sprinkle with julienne basil.  drizzle with balsamic vinegar.  sprinkle with heirloom tomatoes.


you can't help but smile...

m has been super busy keeping up with her t-shirt orders. it has been really fun to help her out. it reminds me of the good old days when i had my own store. :) anyone interested in ordering can email her at michaelanargi@yahoo.com. $15 plus shipping.

 it was pretty funny to be walking the beach and seeing a couple of random people with them on. flag shirts are sold out at the moment!

btw    these are not the random people.  these are my loves.











love sent, xo

Monday, July 21, 2014

wherever you go...

the weekends just fly by.  we had a super fun laid back couple of days.  we have been on the run so much that it was nice to be "sort of" home -  meaning we actually slept in our own bed at the end of the day.
friday night we stayed local had dinner out side and had a great peaceful end of the week kind of evening.  lazy days of summer. 



this amazing watermelon salad prompted me to spend a good part of saturday making home made
ricotta.  a pretty simple process with pretty good results. sunday brought us to an amazing farmers market/ craft booths/ food truck extravaganza.  the food trucks were so awesome.  made me want to run out and start up a food business.  we bought some wonderful heirloom tomatoes and great basil, both of which will be added to the watermelon salad i intend to duplicate from the above photo with, of course, the home made ricotta.

the farmers market was great. so many things, there was something for everyone. all kinds of great vegetables, local honey, homemade marshmallows, beautiful flowers, salsas, fantastic breads.  if you live local you should totally go.  the farmers market/craft/ food truck event is  open every sunday through october 28th  located at 480 harrrison ave. boston. ma.



the craft area had some really fun and unusual items.  some of my favorites were.  these beautiful prints.


these recycled bottles that were made into vases. 



i wanted to try every single food truck.  we had to narrow it down to two choices but we will certainly be back.
first on the list was a bone daddys burger truck.  incredible.   we opted for a burger with prosciutto, mozzarella and pesto aioli.  i was sold at the first line. we got it with bacon dusted truffle fries that were to die for.


with our trip to france on the horizon we had to try this one.  the la tour eiffel by paris creperie.  a food truck serving up crepes. simply amazing. they serve up several savory crepe options including,  chicken and kale, apples & cheddar, lili’s love, and the mediterranean. they all looked wonderful, but i couldn’t resist the idea of trying the chicken with kale and poppy seed aioli,  it was fantastic.  i totally wanted to try  one of their sweet crepes but i just couldn't fit it in.  there was a butter and brown sugar crepe with strawberries, there was also a brie and apple crepe and a nutella crepe. bananas, strawberries, or blueberries could be added to the sweet crepes for additional $1 charge.


 
                                       clearly this event is very popular and i can see why.
           


                         also,  it was national ice cream day -  so we had to hit up this truck, which i totally
                                                loved that it looked like a chalk board!


          right next door there is a huge vintage market that was super crowded but had some really neat items.


hope you had a really fun weekend as well.

love sent, xo

Friday, July 18, 2014

life.

we are all in different stages of our lives,  but most of us want one thing - to be happy, and to end each day being grateful.
i wanted to post some pictures of the past several weeks, moments that have really made me happy.
                                                                  
                                                 blue margarita  find the recipe here




 
 
perfect evening for a walk around newburyport

 
gram's last night at the homestead.  she is an amazing woman.
everyone has been instrumental in helping her get well enough to head home.
we are so blessed with an incredible family.

 
she is so sweet. we really hate to see her go.  but she really, really wants to go home.
 
                                                            
 
 

                                                                   meeting baby felicia





                                             our much needed get away to the vineyard

         
                                                      hanging out on this deck for hours



                      enjoying such a great group of friends. our annual martha's vineyard get together.

                                                          
                                                                cheers - love these guys!!



                   if you go,  don't miss breakfast at the airport.  if you are super adventurous
                   you can take a bi plane ride.

                                                                           


                                  we hung out at the beach all day - this little guy kept us fed.


                                                        we dressed up for dinner


               
                                                               we had perfect weather
                                                                   
                                                              
                   and lots of evening strolls.  it was so relaxing.  perfect after such a long winter.
                                               

 got home in time for the annual porch soiree.  lots of wine has been consumed here and lots of secrets have been shared.
 
catching up with friends from san diego.  a friendship that spans 40 years.


                                                        
                                                            drinks on the waterfront

                                                            and sharing another beautiful sunset
                                                     
                                                                  july has been such a gift.

love sent, xo