Recipes

Bacon & Herb Croissant Stuffing


I love the holidays. They’re such a time for gathering and time for family. Cornbread dressing has been in my family repertoire for ages. It’s just something that we had every holiday. My grandmother was notorious for making it rich and creamy. I’ve updated the classic with rich buttery croissants. The dish is full of smokey bacon, savory vegetables, and is tied together with a creamy broth. It’s perfect for the holiday. Oh, and it’s simple. It’s easy. It’s delicious!



Here’s the recipe


8 regular sized croissants, cut into cubes

1/2 pound of diced bacon

1/2 cup of diced celery

1/2 cup of diced onion

1/2 cup of diced bell peppers

1 tablespoon of dried Italian herbs

About 2-3 cups of chicken broth

2 cans of cream of chicken soup

1 tablespoon of olive oil


PREPARATION


Start by preheating the oven to 400 degrees. Then, in a pan, saute the bacon, onion, celery, and peppers in olive oil until the bacon has just about cooked through.

Then, add in the dried herbs and cook for about 60 seconds, while stirring to combine.

Next, in a large bowl, combine the bacon and vegetable mixture with the diced croissants and the cream of chicken soup.

Moisten the mixture with the chicken broth, 1 cup at a time. You want it moist so it stays creamy.

Pour into a baking dish and bake for 25 minutes or until the top is nice and crusty. Enjoy immediately.


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YUMMMMMM!!!!


 

 

4 KEYS TO A PERFECT STEAK


So, there’s no doubt that I happen to love a good steak. I mean, a really, nice, juicy steak that’s simply seasoned is delicious. Here are my 4 keys to a perfect steak!

 

Choose a cut a meat with a nice marbling of fat. My preference is a nice meaty rib eye. Here’s why: Fat always equals flavor. When the fat heats up, it melts. This melting will naturally tenderize the meat, making it super tender. Then, it’ll cut just like a hot knife through butter.


 

Room Temperature First!

Always let your meat come to room temperature, first. This allows the meat to cook evenly when you place it in a hot skillet. If you place a cold piece of meat in the hot pan, it’ll come out a bit tough and rubbery. Steak is too gentile of a cut to just treat it any ol’ kind of way. So, always let your meat come to room temperature, first!!!


 

Simply Season: A Little Goes A Long Way

Steak is super flavorful. There’s never a need to go overboard. They say, when it’s classic, it speaks for itself. That’s true for the almighty steak. Just put a little Kosher salt, fresh cracked black pepper, and maybe a touch of granulated garlic over the steak on both sides. That’s really all you need. You want to be able to appreciate the beef. If it’s over seasoned, you’ll lose that appreciation. It’s almost like getting all dressed up and putting on way too much perfume. Remember, just a dab will do ya.


 

 Hot Pan. Room Temp Oil. Flip Once.

I’m a stickler for technique. Once you learn it, you can just about do anything. Here’s how you do this. Get your cast iron skillet super hot. You want it so hot that it’s almost smoking. Be ready to move quickly. Add a bit of olive oil to coat the bottom of the pan. The olive oil should immediately start to waft. You should start to see ripples and if it smokes a little, you’re super ready to roll. Add the steak to the pan and let it sear and get crusty on one side. Then, flip it over and let it finish cooking. Simple. Done!

All in all, don’t over think it! Making the perfect steak is actually super easy and fun to do – right in the comfort of your own home!


 

BANANA PUDDIN-TINIS

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I’m such a huge fan of traditional southern desserts. Red Velvet, peach cobbler, banana pudding, caramel cake – I love them all. I have to admit…this original idea isn’t my recipe. It belongs to Paula Deen. It’s her “Not Your Mama’s Banana Pudding.” But, I did take a riff on it – made 2 small changes. I like a much stiffer banana pudding – so I nixed the cream cheese. Also, I use a little less milk in the instant French vanilla pudding – the way it set up is simply marvelous. I had the bright idea to serve them in wine glasses (seeing as though I didn’t have any martini glasses), but you get the idea.


 

Here’s the recipe


Ingredients

1 box of French Vanilla flavored Jello pudding

1 cup of whole milk

1 container of cool whip

1 can of sweetened condensed milk

5 bananas, sliced

Pepperidge Farm Chessman Butter Cookies


 

Directions

Mix jello pudding and milk together and let stand for just one minute. Add sweetened condensed milk and fold in the cool whip. Layer a glass with bananas, cookies, and the cream mixture. Refrigerate for at least 6 hours and enjoy.


 


SHRIMP & SAUTEED SPINACH



Ingredients:

1 pound of cleaned, deveined and shelled large shrimp
2 1/2 tablespoons of olive oil
1 1/2 tablespoons of Simply Asia Sweet Ginger Garlic Seasoning {seasoning can be purchased at some local supermarkets, Walmart, local Asian Market, Sam’s Club,}    1/4 cup dry white wine
3 cups of fresh spinach


Preparation

In a medium skillet, add 1 tablespoon of olive oil and heat until a slight shimmer occurs on the surface.

In a separate bowl combine the shrimp, 1 tablespoon of olive oil and the sweet ginger garlic seasoning, tossing lightly until shrimp are thoroughly coated.

Add the shrimp to the hot skillet, quickly sautééing until they are cooked and turn opaque. Pour in wine to quickly bubble and deglaze the skillet, scraping up the delicious brown “bits” on the bottom.

Remove shrimp to a small bowl and cover to keep warm.

In the same skillet, add in the final 1/2 tablespoon of olive oil and toss in the spinach, quickly stirring until the leaves are just wilted. Throw the shrimp back in for a final “toss”, then plate up on a small serving dish.


BROWN SUGAR & mUSTARD GLAZED SALMON



Ingredients:

2 6oz salmon fillets
1 teaspoon of salt
1/2 teaspoon of pepper
2 garlic cloves, grated
1 tablespoon of mustard
1 tablespoon of brown sugar
1 pinch of red pepper flakes
1 1/2 tablespoon of Canola oil
lemon or lime wedges, to garnish


Preparation

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

In a bowl, combine the salt, pepper, grated garlic cloves, mustard, brown sugar, red pepper flakes, and Canola oil until a paste has formed.

Liberally season the fish with salt and pepper. Then smear the paste onto the flesh side of the fish.

Heat a cast iron skillet (or oven safe) on the stove and then add a bit of oil to the pan. Cook the fish skin side down first until it’s golden brown on one side, then flip and place in the hot oven to cook through. Cook until the desired temperature has been reached.

Garnish with fresh lemon or lime wedges.


VIDEO TUTORIAL



BBQ SHORT RIBS



Ingredients:

4 lbs pork ribs
3/4 cup light brown sugar
1 teaspoon hickory smoke salt
1 tablespoon paprika
1 tablespoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon ground red pepper (optional)
2 cups of your favorite barbecue sauce


Preparation

Preheat oven to 300 degrees f. Peel off tough membrane that covers the bony side of the ribs.Mix together the sugar and spices to make the rub.Apply rub to ribs on all sides.

Lay ribs on two layers of foil, shiny side out and meaty side down.
Lay two layers of foil on top of ribs and roll and crimp edges tightly, edges facing up to seal.

Place on baking sheet and bake for 2-2 1/2 hours or until meat is starting to shrink away from the ends of the bone.

Remove from oven.Heat broiler.Cut ribs into serving sized portions of 2 or 3 ribs

.Arrange on broiler pan, bony side up. Brush on sauce. Broil for 1 or 2 minutes until sauce is cooked on and bubbly.Turn ribs over. Repeat on other side. Alternately, you can grill the ribs on your grill to cook on the sauce.


CRISPY OVEN BAKED CHICKEN



Ingredients

2 cups cornflake crumbs
1/2 cup grated Parmesan
2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
3 eggs
24 skinless chicken drumsticks or breast fillets (about 4 ounces each)


Preparation

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Line 2 shallow roasting pans with aluminum foil. Coat with nonstick vegetable oil cooking spray.

Mix together cornflake crumbs, Parmesan, salt and cayenne pepper in large bowl. Lightly beat eggs in shallow glass dish. Dip each chicken drumstick in egg; roll in cornflake crumbs to coat. Place on prepared pans. Lightly coat chicken with nonstick vegetable-oil cooking spray.

Bake in 350 degrees F oven, without turning, for 1 hour.  Serve the chicken hot, warm or chilled.


6 CHEESE MAC & CHEESE



Ingredients:

6 cups of cooked pasta (elbow macaroni works best)
1 stick of butter
4 tablespoons of flour
2 cups of half and half
1 cup of heavy cream
1 teaspoon of salt
1 teaspoon of pepper
1/2 teaspoon of garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon fo onion powder
4 cups of shredded cheese – your choice (for this, I used what I had left over Havarti, Parmesan, White Cheddar, Monterey Jack, Gouda, and Velveeta)
1/2 cup of sour cream
*shredded cheese for topping


Preparation
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
Melt the butter.
Then stir in the flour and cook for about 60 seconds while constantly stirring.
Add in half and half and heavy cream and continue to stir periodically while on high heat. When the mixture comes to a boil, it should start to thicken.
Fold in cheese, salt, pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, and sour cream.
Allow the cheese to melt down into a smooth sauce. This should take about 3 minutes on low heat.
Mix with the cooked pasta and pour into a baking dish and top with more shredded cheese.
Bake until golden brown and bubbly. Enjoy warm!


Crispy Honey Pepper Chicken Strips



Ingredients:

2 pound of boneless skinless check breasts, cut into strips

1 tablespoon of Kosher salt

1 tablespoon of ground black pepper

1 teaspoon of granulated garlic powder

1/2 teaspoon of onion powder

2 cups of flour

1 cup of cornstarch

1/4 cup of water

6 cups of vegetable oil

Honey Pepper Sauce for dipping, recipe to follow


Preparation

Put the chicken in a bowl and toss with the water, salt, black pepper, garlic powder, and onion powder to coat well.

In a separate bowl, mix the cornstarch and flour together and dredge the chicken strips. Shake off the excess flour and set aside.

Preheat the vegetable oil to 365 degrees. You can test it by dropping a pinch of flour into the oil. If it bubbles immediately, the oil is hot enough.

Fry up the strips until they’re golden brown and then drizzle with the honey pepper sauce while they’re still hot.


Honey Pepper Sauce

1 cup of honey

1 cup of sweet chili sauce

1 pinch of red pepper flakes

1 pinch of salt

Combine all ingredients and warm in a microwave for about 45 seconds. Stir well to combine.


CORN FLAKE & PARMESAN CRUSTED PORKCHOPS



Ingredients:

4 center cut pork chops

1 cup of sour cream

1 cup of mayonnaise

1 teaspoon of onion powder

1 teaspoon of garlic powder

1 teaspoon of salt

1 teaspoon of black pepper

1/2 teaspoon of dried oregano

1/2 teaspoon of dried basil

6 cups of crushed corn flakes

1 cup of grated Parmesan cheese

1 1/2 tablespoons of olive oil


Preparation

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Meanwhile, in a large bowl, mix together the mayo, sour cream, garlic powder, onion powder, salt, pepper, oregano, basil, and olive oil. Mix well and coat each of pork chops with the mixture.

Then, add the Parmesan and corn flakes to plastic food storage bag and toss each chop in the mixture to coat well.

Arrange each pork chop onto a baking rack and roast in the oven for 25 minutes or until the internal temperature reaches 155 degrees Fahrenheit. Enjoy warm.


BEST HOMEMADE FRIED RICE



Ingredients:

4 cups cooked rice (white or brown)
250gms (½ pound) cooked chicken breast
250gms (½ pound) cooked prawns (shrimp)
250gms (½ pound) diced bacon
1 cup frozen peas, corn & carrots
3 shallots (scallions/green onions) finely sliced
1 white onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 eggs
3 tablespoons sesame oil
¼ cup soy sauce


Preparation

Prepare 4 cups of cooked rice according to package instructions
Heat sesame oil in a large skillet on medium heat.
Add onion, garlic, peas, corn, shallots, and carrots. Stir fry until tender.
Crack eggs into pan and scramble, mixing throughout vegetables.
Add rice, chicken, prawns & bacon to pan.
Stir in soy sauce and remove from heat.


Tip: you can also add:
Thinly sliced beef strips
Water Chestnuts
Bean Shoots
Baby Corn
Snow Peas
The list of extra ingredients is only limited by your imagination!!


 BANANA PUDDING



Ingredients:

3⁄4 cup sugar
1/3 cup flour
Pinch salt
3 eggs, separated
2 cups milk
1⁄2 tsp vanilla
45 vanilla wafers, divided
5 bananas, sliced


Preparation:

Mix 1⁄2 cup sugar, flour and salt in top of double boiler. Blend in 3 egg yolks and milk. Cook, uncovered over boiling water for 10 to 12 minutes or until thickened, stirring constantly. Remove from heat, stir in vanilla.
Spread small amount of custard onto bottom of 11⁄2 quart baking dish. Cover with layers of 1/3 each of the wafers, reserving 12 wafers for garnish, bananas and remaining custard. Repeat layers 2 times
Beat egg whites on high speed of mixer until soft peaks form. Gradually beat in remaining sugar until stiff peaks form. Spread over custard, sealing well to the edge of dish. Bake 15 to 20 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool slightly and top with reserved wafers just before serving.
*Can also be made in glasses as individual servings.


RED VELVET CHEESECAKE BROWNIE BITES



Ingredients:

For the brownies:
8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted
1 cup sugar
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 Tablespoon red food coloring
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon white vinegar
2 large eggs, lightly whisked
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
For the cheesecake filling:
1 (8-oz.) package cream cheese, softened
3 Tablespoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 large egg yolk


Preparation 

Make the brownie batter:
Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Grease a mini muffin pan with cooking spray.

In a large bowl, stir together the melted butter, sugar, cocoa powder, vanilla extract, food coloring and salt until combined and then stir in the white vinegar.

Add the eggs and stir until combined. Fold in the flour just until combined. Set brownie mixture aside.

Make the cheesecake filling:
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the cream cheese with the sugar, vanilla extract and egg yolk until combined. Transfer the cheesecake mixture to a piping bag or sealable plastic bag and snip off the tip.

Using a small ice cream scoop (or two small spoons) scoop about 1 tablespoon of the brownie batter into each well of the mini muffin pan. Pipe about 1 teaspoon of the cheesecake mixture atop the brownie batter then top the cheesecake mixture with an additional 1 teaspoon of brownie batter. Using a toothpick, swirl the brownie batter and cheesecake mixture together.

Bake the brownie bites for about 12 minutes or until the cheesecake mixture is fully baked. Remove the brownie bites from the oven and allow them to cool in the pan for about 5 minutes before removing them.


SWEETIE PIE’S  BREAD PUDDING RECIPE



Ingredients

6 slices day-old bread
2 tablespoons butter, melted
1/2 cup raisins (optional)
4 eggs, beaten
2 cups milk
3/4 cup white sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon vanilla extract


Preparation

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
Break bread into small pieces into an 8 inch square baking pan. Drizzle melted butter or margarine over bread. If desired, sprinkle with raisins.
In a medium mixing bowl, combine eggs, milk, sugar, cinnamon, and vanilla. Beat until well mixed. Pour over bread, and lightly push down with a fork until bread is covered and soaking up the egg mixture.
Bake in the preheated oven for 45 minutes, or until the top springs back when lightly tapped.


Sweetie Pie’s Mac ‘n Cheese



Ingredients

2 cups dry, small elbow macaroni
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon white pepper
1 12-ounce can evaporated milk
2 to 3 tablespoons sugar
2 eggs
1/3 cup sour cream
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons margarine
Pepper
1/2 pound cubed Velveeta
1/3 pound feather shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
1/3 pound feather shredded Colby Jack
4 tablespoons whole milk
1/3 pound fancy shredded mild cheddar cheese (for topping)


Preparation

Bring 6 cups of water to a boil; add 1 tablespoon of salt.  Add macaroni noodles and cook to al dente.  Drain in strainer and run cold water over noodles for a few minutes to bring the temperature down. Preheat oven to 375°F. Grease a 3-quart casserole dish with butter. Combine evaporated milk, sugar, eggs and sour cream in a mixing bowl and whisk thoroughly.  Add macaroni to casserole dish.  Stir in evaporated milk, egg and cream mixture.  Mix thoroughly. Add butter, margarine, pepper, Velveeta cubes, sharp Cheddar and Colby jack cheeses. Mix well while adding whole milk. Pack down mixture into casserole dish and top with fancy mild cheese. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until cheese is melted and light brown.


OXTAILS 



Ingredients

3 pounds oxtails
1 teaspoon olive oil
1 can beef broth
1 cup red wine
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
6 cloves garlic, large ones cut in 1/2
1 teaspoon dried basil
1 teaspoon dried oregano
2 bay leaves
1 (8-ounce) can tomato sauce
1/2 Vidalia onion, cut into 6 wedges
6 small new red potatoes, cut in 1/2
4 medium carrots, cut into 2-inch lengths
1 pot hot buttered rice


Preparation

Preheat oven to 300 to 350 degrees F.

Sprinkle the oxtails liberally with House Seasoning on both sides.

Coat the bottom of a heavy oven-proof Dutch oven with the olive oil. Once heated, add the oxtails and sear on all sides. Remove and set aside. Scrape up the brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Add the beef broth, red wine, Worcestershire sauce, and garlic cloves. Stir. Add basil, oregano, bay leaves, hot sauce, tomato sauce, and the reserved oxtails. Stir to combine all ingredients together.

Cover tightly, place in oven, and bake for 2 to 3 hours.

Remove from oven and bring to a simmer on stove top. Add the sweet onion wedges, red potatoes, garlic and carrots to the pot. Cover and simmer until potatoes are almost tender, roughly 15 minutes.

Serve oxtails with the vegetables over hot buttered rice.


COSTA RICAN WATERMELON MOJITO



Ingredients

  • 3 cups Watermelon, cubed
  • 4 ounces freshly squeezed Lemon Juice
  • 5 ounces White Rum
  • 4 ounces Simple Syrup
  • 12 large Spearmint leaves, rough chopped

Instructions

  1. Blend all ingredients on high until fully incorporated. Pour into popsicle molds; cover and insert wooden sticks. Tip: applying a layer of foil over the top of the mold or lid of the mold allows placement of wooden sticks and they will not float out of the mold.
  2. Freeze for several hours or overnight. Run hot water for a few seconds on the outside of the mold to release pops!

PEACH SANGRIA



I posted a photo of this peach sangria  in an Instagram Post and noticed a lot of requests for the recipe in the comments. I discovered this delicious drink through Pinterest (my newest obsession), but the actual recipe is from Coastal Living. Needless to say, peaches are in season right now which makes this the perfect time to share the recipe with all of you!

Here it is, courtesy of Coastal Living

Ingredients

  • 1 bottle of white wine of your choice
  • 1 cup peach schnapps
  • ½ cup frozen lemonade concentrate, thawed
  • 2 nectarines, sliced
  • 1 cup green or red grapes, whole or sliced

Instructions: Combine all ingredients in a large pitcher. Cover and chill at least 2 hours or overnight. Stir before serving. Enjoy!

For a virgin version of this recipe, swap out the schnapps and white wine for Sprite or sparkling water!

Give it a try and tell me what you think!


PILGRIM PUNCH



This Thanksgiving, treat your friends and family to a little something I like to call Pilgrim Punch. It’s a refreshing mixture of apple and cranberry juice with a splash of ginger ale and a bit of vodka. And it is delicious!

Here’s how to make it…

Serves 5

  1. Combine 1 cup of organic apple juice with 1 cup sugar-free cranberry juice.
  2. Pour in ¼ cup of your favorite vodka along with 1 ½ cups of ginger ale and stir.
  3. Serve chilled and garnish with one sprig of rosemary and a couple of loose cranberries. Enjoy!

To make it a “mocktail,” simply combine all ingredients sans vodka for a similar flavor.

P.S. I tested out a few different variations of this drink, and it’s delicious with orange flavored rum as well!


PUMPKIN PIE BITES



If I had to pick one flavor to describe fall it would undoubtedly be pumpkin. Pumpkin pie to be exact. When I came across this recipe for “Pumped Up Pumpkin Pie Bites” I couldn’t resist. Not only is it a great alternative to traditional pumpkin pie, but I’m also a sucker for bite-size treats. These little nibbles are relatively healthy compared to regular pie. Just 94 calories for two bites. Not bad for dessert, right? Plus, they are the perfect dessert to serve if you’re having a Thanksgiving gathering and need to accommodate a lot of guests.

Give this recipe a try and let me know what you think!

Makes 32 bites

Note: When making the crust for this recipe, it might, at first, look like the crumbs won’t cover the bottom of the pan, but trust me, they will! The easiest way to distribute them evenly is to use a small piece of parchment paper, and gently press the cereal mixture until you get a nice even layer.

Ingredients

  • Butter-flavored cooking spray
  • 3/4 cups all-natural, whole-grain, crunchy, high-fiber, low-sugar cereal (I used Kashi 7 Whole Grain Nuggets)
  • 2 tablespoons 100% pure maple syrup
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 8 large egg whites
  • 15-ounce can (1-¾ cups) solid pumpkin puree
  • 3/4 cup agave nectar
  • 2 tablespoons whole-wheat pastry flour
  • 2-½ teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1-¼ teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 32 teaspoons whipped topping, divided (optional)


Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Spray an 11″ x 7″ glass or ceramic baking dish with spray.
  2. Add the cereal to the bowl of a food processor fitted with a chopping blade. Process it for 15-20 seconds, or until the cereal is crushed. Transfer it to a small mixing bowl and add the maple syrup and cinnamon. Mix them until well combined (the mixture should be slightly sticky). Spoon the mixture into the prepared baking dish. Using a small piece of parchment paper, gently press down on the cereal mixture, spreading it evenly across the bottom of the baking dish. Bake the crust for 7-9 minutes, or until it is slightly browned. Set aside.
  3. Meanwhile, add the egg whites to a large mixing bowl. Using a sturdy whisk, lightly beat them until they bubble very slightly. Still using the whisk, stir in the pumpkin, agave, and flour until well combined. Stir in the vanilla, pumpkin pie spice, baking powder, and salt and continue mixing until well combined. Pour the filling over the baked crust. Using a rubber spatula, spread it into an even layer.
  4. Bake for 40-45 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out dry (a few crumbs are okay). Transfer the dish to a wire cooking rack, allowing it to cool to room temperature. Carefully cut 32 pumpkin “bites” (3 cuts along the width of the pan, 7 cuts along the length, creating 4×8 bites).
  5. Just before serving, top each bite with 1 teaspoon whipped topping, if desired. Serve immediately or store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.


What’s your favorite pumpkin flavored treat?



Is it your first year hosting Thanksgiving dinner? Or are you simply helping the folks prepare? Here are a few tips to make Thanksgiving dinner easy breezy and stress-free:

  • Confirm your guest list before you go shopping.
  • Figure out what size turkey you need for your group. Figure 2 pounds per person. For instance, 10 people = 20 pound turkey.
  • Pick your recipes and prepare your shopping lists ASAP.
  • Go shopping for all non-perishable goods this weekend and buy the turkey too.
  • Start defrosting the turkey three to four days ahead of time depending on the weight.
  • It’s a good idea to set the table a few days before. Check out the photos I included below for place setting inspiration.
  • The day before Thanksgiving: Go shopping for all perishable goods. Prepare all sauces, soups and vegetable plates too. If you have time, prep dessert as well.
  • On the day of Thanksgiving: Cook the turkey, make the stuffing and finish preparing all plates. Things may (and most likely will) go wrong so be prepared for slipups and take it all with a grain of salt. Mistakes will happen and it’s up to you to make the best of them.

If you’re in need of some Thanksgiving-themed table inspiration (that’s a mouth full), check out these beautiful place settings I found…



CORONA INFUSED  CUPCAKES



Corona Cupcakes! A friend of mine showed me the recipe and I couldn’t resist sharing it with all of you… While there is an endless variety of recipes for this beer-based cupcake online, my friend suggested I use this one from Erica’s Sweet Tooth.

I gave the recipe a try and sure enough, they turned out as yummy as they sound. The taste is very interesting–it has the sweetness of a normal vanilla cupcake, but the flavor is amped up a notch with hints of lime and Corona. I know it sounds strange, but they are really great! Trust me.

If you’re planning on celebrating anything this weekend, I suggest whipping up these bad boys for your friends and family. I promise, they will be a hit with everyone!

Here is the recipe from Erica’s Sweet Tooth :

Makes 24 cupcakes

Ingredients for the Cupcakes

  • 3/4 cups unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1-3/4 cup sugar
  • 2-1/2 cup flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 3 eggs, room temperature
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 tsp lime zest
  • 1 cup Corona beer, plus more for brushing on tops
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • Lime wedges

Instructions for the Cupcakes

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees and line 24 muffin tins with cupcake liners.
  2. In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt.
  3. In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 2-3 minutes.
  4. Add eggs, beating after each addition then add the vanilla and zest.
  5. Combine milk and beer and alternatively add this mixture and the flour mixture to the butter/sugar mixture with the mixer on low speed, starting and ending with the flour.
  6. Fill the cupcake liners 2/3 full and bake for 18 minutes, or until cake tester comes out clean. {I made a batch of full size cupcakes and a batch of minis too. For some reason, everything tastes better when it’s small! If you do make the mini version, bake for half the time and check them frequently since they cook much faster.}
  7. When cupcakes are done, poke holes in the tops of the cupcakes with toothpicks and brush some beer on each while still warm.

Ingredients for the Citrus Frosting

  • 12 oz cream cheese, cold
  • 6 tbsp butter, at room temperature
  • 1 tbsp freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 1 tsp lime zest
  • 4 cups powdered sugar

Instructions for the Frosting

  1. Cream together the cream cheese and butter in an electric mixer until smooth and creamy, about 2-3 minutes.
  2. Add the citrus juice and zest and gradually add the powdered sugar until combined. Beat until smooth for about 2 minutes.
  3. Load frosting in a piping bag fit with a large star tip and pipe cupcake tops once cooled. {I only ended up putting a little squggle of frosting on my final batch becuase the frosting was so rich, so just test it out and see what works best for you!}

Serve the cupcakes with a cold Corona or a tall glass of milk and enjoy!


PINK GRAPEFRUIT MARGARITA



I am a huge fan of margaritas. 

For those of you planning a night in with friends, this is a must-serve cocktail. But, if alcohol isn’t for you, just swap out the liquor for sparkling water or Sprite. It’s just as delicious!

Pink Grapefruit Margaritas

Ingredients

  • 1 cup ruby red grapefruit juice
  • ½ cup freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 1 cup triple sec orange liqueur
  • 3 cups ice
  • 1 cup silver tequila
  • 1 lime cut into wedges
  • Kosher salt

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