Mentions
Mentions, Miscellaneous

We’ve been mentioned a few times recently around the web and I thought that I’d share some of the links.  I can’t even begin to tell you how excited I get when I find out that someone has decided to write about us or mention us on their website or blog!  It’s so rewarding see my work being shared with different audiences who may not have come across my site on their own.  I want to say a huge “THANK YOU!!” to everyone who mentioned us recently…it definitely made my week!!

Two Friday’s ago we had the honor of being the “Fabulous Friday Find” on the So Chic Events Blog!  Shelby is the amazing Planner/Designer behind So Chic Events, a Massachusetts based Event Planning company and writes a great blog with ideas and tips to help you through the planning process.  You can also check out some of her work on the my Kate Parker Wedding site since she is a fellow member!

Recently, I found out that some of my cookies along with a few of Michelle Bohigian’s cakes (Something Sweet by Michelle) had been featured on the eInvites Blog, eInvite’s Insights.  I met Michelle May, one of the talented designers behind eInvite, at a wedding tasting party we did at Tuckerman Hall in Worcester, MA.  I was thrilled when she contacted me to ask if she could use some pictures for a very cool project that she was designing…I can’t wait to hopefully share some pictures of what she has done!  You can also check out her design blog at Festival Creative.

As I’ve mentioned before, we are a member of the new and very neat wedding website, my Kate Parker Wedding.  Earlier this week Kate posted a Vendor Tour video of our company on YouTube.  Very Cool!  Be sure to check it out along with the my Kate Parker Wedding YouTube Channel, where there are some other great vendor tours and some tips from Kate herself.

A few weeks ago on Style Me Pretty, the winners for the Deserving Couple Contest put on by the wonderful Jessica of Jessica’s Country Flowers, were announced.  Jessica is SO amazing to do this for these couples and I am thrilled to be a part of both 2011 weddings and one of the 2010 weddings.   I can’t wait to work with the fabulous group of vendors that she has put together as well as the wonderful couples involved!

It was very neat to find out that one of my cookie images had not only made it into an inspiration board put together by Kate Parker of my Kate Parker Wedding, but also that the board was featured on The Wedding Chicks!!  The board was titled Black and White with Hues of Blue: Vintage Inspiration.  Check it out for some pretty vintage inspiration and to see which cookies were part of it! 

I was excited when I received an email last Monday morning from Stephanie of Starry Night Design Studio, letting me know that she had mentioned my cookies on her blog!  Stephanie does the most amazing hand painted aisle runners and also does coordinating accessories to match. Check out some of her work and also her blog which has lots of great ideas and inspiration! 

Thanks again to everyone for the mentions and I hope that I get to return the favor soon!!

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Beet, Orange, & Goat Cheese Salad Recipe
Recipes

I came up with this recipe a few weeks ago when I was feeling inspired to experiment with some delicious goat cheese left over from a previous meal.  You can prepare the beets, oranges, and dressing ahead of time then just assemble when ready to eat.

Beet, Orange, & Goat Cheese Salad (Makes Approx. 4 Large Salads)

Ingredients:

 3-4 Fresh Beets

2 Oranges

1 Medium Shallot

1/4 Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil

3 Tablespoons Sherry Vinegar

1/4 Cup Orange Juice

1 Teaspoon Orange Zest

Baby Mixed Greens (I used a mix of baby spinach, butter, and romaine)

Goat Cheese (choose a fresh, bright tasting cheese to complement the citrus)

Salt & Pepper

Chopped Walnuts to Garnish

You can assemble and prepare the dressing, oranges and beets a day ahead of time.  To start, roast the beets.  Wash the beets thoroughly and cut off the top stems and bottom root.  They should be flat on both sides.  Rub them with oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper.  Place them in enough foil to be able to seal at the top and sides.  Roast at 400 degrees for 1 hour or until tender.  Once they have cooled, remove the skin and cut into 1/2 inch cubes.  Place the cubes in a bowl with 1 tablespoon of sherry vinegar and a dash of salt and pepper.  Allow them to marinate overnight for the best flavor.  Peel the oranges and separate into groups of 2 sections.  Cut each group into slices and store in an airtight container in the fridge until ready to assemble the salad.

To make the dressing: Mince the shallot and combine with 1/4 cup orange juice, the orange zest, 2 tablespoons sherry vinegar, and some salt and pepper (to taste).  Whisk together until well combined then continue whisking while slowly adding the 1/4 cup olive oil.  You will need to re-whisk the dressing before using.

To assemble the salad:  Wash and dry the mixed greens thoroughly.  In a large bowl, place the greens and a few spoonfuls of the dressing and toss.  Divide the greens between the 4 plates and add the beets, oranges, and goat cheese.  To finish, spoon a few spoonfuls of dressing on each salad and top with the chopped walnuts.

A note on the goat cheese: The fist time that I made the salad I used Selles sur Cher which is an ash covered, fresh, tangy, and crumbly cheese.  The second time I made it I used Valencay which is also ash covered with a fresh and tangy flavor but had a slightly more dense texture which I think worked even better than the Selles sur Cher in the salad.  I found both cheeses at Formaggio Kitchen in Cambridge, MA and I’m sure that at any artisan cheese shop they would be able to recommend a goat cheese with a similar profile to work in the salad. 

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Some Pictures of Cheese!!
Miscellaneous, Restaurants

I finally had a chance yesterday to take all of the pictures from the last month off of my camera so that I could start sorting/sharing them.  I thought that a fun place to start would be with one of my recent (delicious) hobbies which is tasting/leaning about different cheeses… 

A few weeks ago as part of our birthday celebrations we decided to go to a class at Formaggio Kitchen in Cambridge (which is one of my favorite stores!!).  The class was called “The Perfect Pair” in honor of Valentine’s Day and was all about pairings of wine/beer with cheeses as well as some other accompaniments.  It was fun and I learned some things about pairing, the most important of which was to experiment and see what you like together.  Since we had decided not to go out for our birthday because Valentine’s Day can be a bit crazy at restaurants, we went back to Formaggio the day after the class and purchased some cheeses and wine for our birthday dinner at home…   

Stichelton - This was one of the cheeses that we tasted during the class.  It is a cow’s milk blue cheese made in England and it has a strong flavor.  I enjoyed the combination of the Stichelton and a piece of crusty baguette.

Selles sur Cher - This was a fresh goat cheese from the Loire region of France.  It is ash covered and has a delicious creamy texture and fresh flavor.  I used it in a beet & orange salad the next day and it was the perfect complement to the citrus.

Mil Ovejas - This was another cheese which we had tried at the class.  It is a sheep’s milk from spain and I was very intrigued by its texture.  Initially it seems like a hard cheese, but it turns smooth and creamy as you chew it.

 

Reypenaer V.S.O.P. - This is an aged Gouda from The Netherlands and is probably one of my favorite cheeses ever.  It is a firm cheese with a fruity, caramel flavor and calcifications throughout.  I actually prefer to eat this cheese by itself as opposed to with a slice of baguette because I enjoy the smooth flavor so much.

To finish off our plate we had crusty baguette slices, Serrano Ham (Jamon Serrano, hand-boned – sliced), and some balsamic vinegar.  We purchased a sparkling wine, Tissot Cremant du Jura, to accompany our dinner and I found that it was a bit dry which was a nice contrast to the many different flavors on our plate.  Also, it was a beautiful pink color which I couldn’t resist!!

 

If you live in the Boston/Cambridge area and have never been to Formaggio Kitchen, it is definitely worth the trip!  I could spend hours there browsing all of the amazing artisan products that they have collected from around the world.  I have such a long list of items that I want to try!!

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Cookies for a Sweet 16 Masquerade Ball!
Cakes, Cookies

I made some fun mask cookies a few weeks ago for a Masquerade Ball/Phantom of the Opera themed Sweet 16 party.  The colors were red and black with hints of silver.  I decided to do several different designs as well as an equal number of red and black masks so that they could be alternated on the tables.  The hints of silver come from dragees and hand painted details.  We finished their packaging with red and black satin ribbons.

I was lucky that the cake was created by Michelle from Something Sweet by Michelle because she sent me a picture that I could share!  It was a two-tiered white fondant covered cake with black piping and a cascade of red gum-paste roses.  The topper was one of the sparkly masks being given to guests when they arrived.

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