Oct 30, 2015

Autumn Home Tour (Part 2)


One of the reasons Amanda and I get along so well, like sisters really, is that we share common interests and our love for Fall is a big one! We love to decorate, eat (of course) and visit all of the beautiful places in Virginia during the season. So, decorating our homes is par for the course! So, I continue the Autumn Home Tour with some pics from my house during this colorful and exciting season. 

              

One of my favorite parts of my new house. My pretty fireplace. 




In true Suburban Epicurean form, a Fall cookbook 


My favorite pumpkin soup tureen stays on the counter September until Thanksgiving




My favorite thing in the world is pillows. I have so many pillows it is a joke at my house, and quite honestly may be an addiction! I love this pumpkin and gourd lumbar from Pottery Barn. 


I love the look of Indian Corn, it is so colorful and is really indicative of the season. It looks great in a vase, in a bowl or even a cornucopia. 


This is my dining room table. Mixing up my everyday decorations like the basket with some autumn  touches is always fun. 



Another one of my loves....PUMPKINS, I am particularly into white pumpkins lately. 


Again with the pillows, I told you. 



Halloween Treats




Cooks Note: Halloween is a love it or hate it holiday, if you can call it a holiday. For me, the next day marks the beginning of the holiday season, for some it is just annoying and for others it is an excuse to party. Whatever your feelings are about Halloween, kids love it. Everyone loves candy, everyone loves being someone they are not for one night and personally, I like the d├ęcor and cute little snacks and goodies that come along with it. My kids wanted to take treats to school for their "Fall Festival" so I needed something quick and easy that I could make 50 of in one night, and this is what we came up with. I made 32 ghosts and 25 monster teeth in about 1.5 hours, not too shabby! Give these a try for your kids, for your Halloween party, or just because they are delicious! Happy Halloween everyone, stay safe!




Monster Teeth:

1 package chewy Chips Ahoy cookies
1 package of mini marshmallows
1 container white frosting
Red food coloring

1. Mix red food coloring into icing until you have reached your desired shade of red. I was going for blood or gum color so I used a little extra coloring
2. Cut all of the cookies in half
3. Spread a little bit of icing on the inside of each cookie half (don't let it drip over, just enough so it holds the marshmallows and looks like gums)
4. Place 3-4 marshmallows across one half of the cookie on the rounded edge
5. Top with the frosted side of the second half touching the marshmallows


Ghost Pretzels:

1 bag of pretzel rods (the long ones, not the little skinny sticks)
1 bag of White Candy Quick
Black cake decorating pen or small black icing tube

1. Melt candy melts, according to package directions.
2. Once melted, place half of each rod in the candy, rolling to cover the pretzel,
3. When lifting out of the candy, rotate the pretzel around in circles to let the excess drain off
4. Allow candy melts to dry on a sheet of wax paper
6. Once dry, decorate the face with 2 eyes and a mouth.




Oct 28, 2015

Crockpot Baked Apples


Find it On Pinterest

Cook's Note:  I had a craving for apples this week! Fall is underway and Halloween is fast approaching! The leaves are a lovely golden yellow, orange and red and the wind has that gentle breeze that calls my name outside today. I decided to cozy up to this recipe and throw the ingredients in a crock pot and let the smell overtake my home!

What You Will Need:
6-8 apples, Peeled, Cored and Sliced
1/2 cups of granulated sugar
1/4 Light Brown Sugar
1 tsp Ground Cinnamon
1/4 tsp Nutmeg
2 Tbsp Unsalted Butter, cut into small cubes

Directions:
Place apples into crockpot and top with rest of ingredients. Stir mixture and cook for 4 hours or until apples are soft.

Serve however you like! Ideas: You can place in a bowl and top with Whipped Cream or Ice Cream. Eat at breakfast on top of toast or an English Muffin, the ideas can go on and on! :)

This "Pinspiration" comes from: Eat Drink Love

ENJOY!




Oct 27, 2015

Autumn Home Tour (Part 1)

As I sip my Pumpkin Spice flavored coffee this morning, I look around my house and smile and take it all in. I absolutely love this time of year. Particularly, the week of Halloween is one of my favorites. This is the week that the leaves really all start to turn gorgeous colors, a chilly breeze is blowing and all seems right in this little corner of the world. It reminds me of school days gone by and the childhood excitement of upcoming Halloween preparations and pumpkin carving!
I thought I would give our readers a little fall home tour - sharing some of my favorite fall decor with you all. My Mother absolutely loved fall so much and she passed this love on to me. She passed away almost two years ago and I inherited many of her decorations, which I proudly display throughout my home. I guess I love my decorations so much, because they remind me of her.

I hope you will enjoy!

This is my view from my kitchen window this morning. I just love the trees turning outside and my little fall window display. It makes me happy!

 Maybe a bit cheesy, but here is my kitchen table - as you can see, we love pumpkins! Everything here was from my mother - I love it!

Here is my little candy bowl that my little candy grabbing munchkin always tries to get her hands on. I bought this bowl at Harry & David back in 2001, this is virtually an antique by now (haha) :)

Here is a quick peek at my mantle. The wooden pumpkins were used in my wedding as table decorations, they are special to me, so I tried to incorporate them here!


My hallway table display, I just love it! The white candle holder that looks like a sweater is my newest addition and I'm head over heels for it. 
Here's a secret - I'm burning a "Leaves" candle from Bath & Body Works inside and the smell is divine!! Yum!!

Here is my Fall prized possession- my huge ceramic Jack-o-lantern. Trust me, it's HUGE and HEAVY! I inherited this from my Mom. She bought this at the Eddie Bauer Home Store back in like 2000 or 2001 (that store no longer exists). I remember the day she bought it, I was in love! I'm proud to call it my own now. I look forward to pulling it out every Halloween. It's sitting in my hallway.

This witch hangs on a hallway door. LOVE HER! She's a staple here, I've had her for years. I think I got her at Home Goods! 

Here is my little stool by the front door, displaying my pumpkins and cute little Halloween skeleton Boyd's Bear. He's adorable and my little one loves looking at it. 

My cute little bathroom display - yes, you need fall decor in every room! 

Here's a little bowl full of craft store pumpkins- I think it's cute and the placemat underneath was my mother's, so it's a special decoration to me.

Just a cute sign that hangs on my pantry door - I'm from Virginia and we say "Y'all". This was my mother's and I cherish it!

My little scarecrow outside! My toddler loves it and named her "Sunny". She's sure to wave goodbye to Sunny every morning on the way to preschool.

My fall wreath on my door. I'm pretty proud of it - I made it and I love it. Again, we say "Y'all" in Virginia! 

My final picture is from a tree in my backyard. These are the same trees seen in the picture from my kitchen window - this one is more up close. Isn't it beautiful? Nature at its finest!

Thanks for taking a tour of my home, I hope it brought joy and peace to you, like it does to us!













Oct 25, 2015

Salted Caramel Apple Hand Pies


Find it on Pinterest
 
Cook’s Note:  It is a crisp October day and I am craving some sort of apple dessert. The leaves are swirling around outside and fall is calling me to cook! I recently saw this recipe on Pinterest and wanted to try it. I went to the grocery store to get the ingredients, but realized I didn’t have time or energy to make my own pie crust, so I bought a store bought dough and adapted the recipe somewhat. This takes about 30 minutes to prepare and then 15 to bake and let me tell you … it’s worth it! You can double the recipe for a crowd. I can’t wait to make this again!!

What You Will Need:

1 Package of Refrigerated Pie Dough (comes in a pack of 2)
1 to 1 ½ cups small diced (peeled) apples
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 cup sugar
2 teaspoons all-purpose flour
8 Kraft soft caramels, each square chopped into 4 pieces
Sea Salt (in the grinder)
Egg wash (1 egg lightly whisked with 1 Tablespoon water)
Sugar in the Raw packet

Directions:

Preheat your oven to 425 degrees.
Mix together diced apples, lemon juice, cinnamon, sugar and flour and set aside. This will be the pie filling.
Remove the refrigerator dough from the packaging and roll out onto a floured surface.
Using a circle cookie cutter or cup: cut out as many circles as possible. You can always roll the left over dough again and cut out more circles. You will need an even number of  12 circles.
Place six of the dough circles on a cookie sheet (sprayed with non-stick cooking spray). Spoon a small portion of the apple filling into the middle of each circle, leaving a small border around the circle.  Place 1-2 pieces of caramel on top of each pie filling center and grind a pinch or two of sea salt on top.
 
 
Place a second dough circle of each little pie and then use a fork to seal the edges of each pie.
Brush each pie top with egg wash. Then, with a knife, cut a design of 3-4 small cuts in the middle of each pie (see pics) to vent the pies.
Using the packed of sugar in the raw; lightly sprinkle the tops of each pie so that they have a sugary glistening top.
Bake the pies for 12-15 minutes or until golden brown. Once you remove the pies, let cool for about 10 minutes before serving. You can serve as is or with whipped cream or ice cream on top.
Get ready for a DELICIOUS TREAT that the entire family will love!

This “Pinspiration” comes from:
“Just a Taste”
 
 
ENJOY!
 

 
 

Oct 15, 2015

Cape Cod Chopped Salad


Find it on Pinterest

Cooks Note: When I saw this salad it looked like Fall to me, in a bowl. This has every delicious ingredient I love all rolled, or tossed, into one. The dressing is just the right amount of sweetness and goes so well with the crisp, sweet apples. Goat cheese is my favorite thing in the world, but if you aren't a fan, you could always replace it with feta. If you added chicken to this it would be great as a meal with some crusty bread or as a side to a nice bowl of soup. This is a beautiful and delicious salad that everyone will enjoy!

Salad

8 oz bacon cooked and crumbled
4 cups of your favorite lettuce blend (I use a spring mix)
1 Honey Crisp apple, diced
1/2 cup chopped and toasted pecans
1/3 cup dried cranberries or craisins
1/4 c. fresh blueberries
6 oz crumbled goat cheese
Homemade croutons (chop any loaf of bread (I used a french loaf) and toss lightly with olive oil, salt and pepper and garlic powder. Roast in the oven at 375 for 12-15 min.)

Maple Citrus Dressing

3 Tablespoons Apple Cider Vinegar
1 teaspoon grated Orange zest
2 Tbsp. freshly squeezed orange juice
2 1/2 tsp. Dijon mustard
2 Tablespoons pure maple syrup
1 Tablespoon green onions, finely chopped
Sea Salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper
2/3 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil


Instructions:

Prepare dressing by whisking all ingredients, except olive oil in a bowl. Then, slowly incorporate olive oil while whisking. May need to whisk again prior to serving because dressing may settle and separate. 

Combine salad ingredients in a bowl and mix. Add dressing (not all of it unless you like it very saturated) and toss well. Sprinkle the top with extra cheese crumbles or bacon pieces for garnish. Serve. 


This Pinspiration came from The Cozy Little Kitchen