Honey Roasted Cardamom California Walnuts-15128

Honey Roasted Cardamom California Walnuts

One of the many perks of being in charge of a test kitchen is that I get to constantly challenge myself. Whether its looking a salmon (literally) in the eye or attacking a creme brulee with an blow-torch, I am always quite happily stepping out of my comfort zone. As I say time and time again, the cooking process is about learning and that is why I absolutely love it. One particular dish I have always been afraid to try is a honey roasted nut. So, when I was approached by California Walnuts for a collaboration, I figured this was …

Autumn Entertaining at Home-15071

Autumn Entertaining at Home

The end of Labor Day officially marks the end of summer. And the end of summer means the beginning of the Fall. To which I say, ‘Yahoowee!’ I am an Autumn gal, through and through, so I look forward to this time of year like a child trying to fall asleep on Christmas Eve. Pumpkin Spice Lattes, fresh baked pies, and richly mixed cocktails. Aaah, I cannot contain the squeals! The one thing I am remise to say goodbye to is the unique feel of a patio party. In particular, there is something so romantic about the mood that comes with stringed …

Rice Krispie Cake-12232

Rice Krispie Cake

For most people, a Sweet 16 celebration is about coming of age and (largely) learning to drive!  But for beautiful Brittany, this birthday celebration holds a much deeper meaning… it marks 7 years being cancer free.  This lovely young lady has lived through some unimaginably trying times and has come out the other end.  To mark this extraordinary day, she was treated to an ethereal day in the woods. Photographer Courtney Lovestrom introduces us to this remarkable young woman: Brittany isn’t you ordinary 16 year old. She was diagnosed with non Hodgkin’s lymphoma at the age of 7. She faced …

Spring Fruit Galette with Bob’s Red Mill-12692

Spring Fruit Galette with Bob’s Red Mill

There is one tradition that is a must in my household come Easter and its name, my friends, is baking.  From sweet hotcakes to a rustic bundt, it’s a requirement for the holiday.  Not only is it wonderful to get spoiled with a bit of sugary decadence, it’s a wonderful bonding activity that has been passed down from generation to generation in my family.  My mom learned the art from her grandmother and made it an integral part of Easter celebrations during my childhood.  Plus I always got to lick the bowl… obviously, the best memories I have as a …

Woodland Brandy Cocktail with Libbey Glass-12017

Woodland Brandy Cocktail with Libbey Glass

    Baby it’s cold outside… so why not cozy up to the fire with loved ones and a unique cocktail in hand?!  With all the family get-togethers, secret Santas, and rendez-vous under the mistletoe, it’s a great season to show off your mixology skills.  As a frequent party hostess, I make sure that every event has a signature cocktail to go along with the night.  Not only is it a fun way to incorporate a theme, it also serves as a memorable conversation starter for your guests.  That’s why I was thrilled to team up with Libbey Glass for …

Sara Lee & The Cranberry Cheesecake Shake-11686

Sara Lee & The Cranberry Cheesecake Shake

  If you’re anything like me, then you take pride in throwing an amazing party. But as joyous as the holiday season can be, it is often paired with a smidgen of stress.  From surviving the mall crowds to hours of wrapping gifts, it’s not all fun and games.  So how do you avoid being overwhelmed and transform the holiday from good to great?  My secret?  Creative shortcuts!  That’s right, I like to cut corners and cheat a bit when it comes to hosting. Today with the help of Walmart and Sara Lee, we’re going to offer you one inventive …

Curtis Stone & the Ocean Spray Bog-11672

Curtis Stone & the Ocean Spray Bog

The bucket list… most people’s list include things like skydiving and swimming with sharks.  Mine?  Well, mine has more food-centric goals like diving into a tub of jello and eating a full size chocolate sculpture of Marie Antoinette.  So you can imagine my squeals when I received an invite to eat lunch with Curtis Stone in a cranberry bog created by Ocean Spray in Rockafeller Center.  Not only did I get to eat a Thanksgiving themed lunch with Curtis Stone, I got to do it while wading knee deep in a cranberry bog.  This is stuff that foodie dreams are …