Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Summer wedding inspiration


This lovely inspiration shoot was designed by Shannon Merryman for her father's photography business, Kevin George Photography.  I love the soft, summery vibe.  If I could have a wedding all over again I would do an outdoor, summer brunch with the same type of bohemian feel as this shoot.

Photo credits to Kevin George Photography.










Thanks to Shannon for sending this gorgeous summer shoot my way! 

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Zucchini and goat cheese tarts


I have been a bit obsessed with quiche and tarts lately. In just four days I have made a crab quiche, tomato, basil and mozzarella quiche and zucchini and goat cheese tarts. Savory tarts are my absolute favorite. And mini tarts are great because you can pick them up and eat them with your hands and they would make a wonderful appetizer for any party.



This zucchini and goat cheese tart was supposed to be made on Sunday as one of the items on the brunch buffet for my sister's Breakfast at Tiffany's bridal shower. But...I ran out of time and only served one quiche (the tomato, basil and mozzarella quiche) which was a hit so it was fine. The shower was a huge success; all the details looked quite lovely, the weather was sunny and warm and my sister (the bride-to-be) had a beautiful smile on her face the entire time. The shower may be featured on another blog soon so I am waiting until then to post it on Eat Drink Pretty.



Zucchini and goat cheese tarts (loosely adapted from Food Network)

Ingredients

1 1/2 pounds medium zucchini or a mixture of summer squashes
Kosher salt
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 medium white onion, chopped, about 1 cup
1 clove garlic, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons chopped flat-leaf parsley
1 tablespoon chopped fresh dill
2 cups half-and-half
2 large eggs
2 egg yolks
Freshly ground black pepper
6 ounces young goat cheese, such as Montrachet.
2 ounces grated Swiss or Gruyere cheese, about 1/2 cup
1 sheet refrigerated pie dough/crust (such as Pillsbury)

Directions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Shred the squash on the large holes of a box grater, into a colander. Sprinkle with a heaping tablespoon salt and toss well. Place in the sink and drain for 15 minutes. Rinse and the squeeze firmly, by the handful, to remove excess water. Set aside.

Add 2 tablespoons oil, the onions and garlic and season with 1/2 teaspoon salt, cook over medium-high heat, until onions are start to brown, about 5 minutes. Add the zucchini, and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Stir in parsley and dill. Remove from heat, cool slightly.

Whisk half-and-half, eggs and yolks in large glass measuring cup. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Press store-bought pie dough into tartlet molds (or a 9-10 inch tart pan or small mason jars) Layered the zucchini, goat cheese, swiss and top with the egg mixture (be sure to only add a small amount of egg mixture or it will overflow when baking).

The tartlets baked for about 30 minutes and the quiche in jars take about 45 minutes. Cool completely on a rack before serving.



The tartlets were my favorite. Yum. But the quiche in a jar is quite cute and would be perfect to pack for a picnic. You can just screw the lid on, or cover it with foil and pop it in your picnic basket.


Do you have a favorite quiche or savory tart recipe to share? Please email to eatdrinkpretty@gmail.com.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Real party: vintage circus birthday party


Kristina of Modern Frills blog sent me this adorable party she threw for her daughter's fourth birthday. The party was a vintage circus theme; vintage with a touch of circus in pinks and yellows. Lots of bunting, cookies and handmade treats.

Enjoy the photos taken by Karen Wright Photography.






Thanks to Kristina for sending this lovely party.  Be sure to head over to her blog Modern Frills for more details and photos from the party.

Do you have a real party to share? Please sent to eatdrinkpretty@gmail.com

Friday, June 25, 2010

The sweetest wedding cake


{Photo credits: Joy the Baker}
This cake melts my heart.

I love baking, it has become one of my favorite hobbies over the past year. And it's no secret how much I adore weddings. So when Joy the Baker featured this amazing wedding cake that she baked for her good friends, I couldn't resist posting it. Joy of Joy the Baker blog is sweet, funny, talented, etc...I read her blog religiously and have a sort of girl-crush on her. Spend five minutes on her blog and you'll understand.


Back to the cake. I adore this cake because it was created with a lot of love and the attention to detail is unreal  It was inspired by the couples cute wedding invitation. 


For recipes, how-to and tons of details head over to Joy the Baker's blog.  So what do you think?  Do you agree this cake is the sweetest thing ever? 

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Real wedding: Melissa and Kevin, June 2010


When you have a gorgeous bride, cute groom, beautiful details and even a little doggie in the mix you get one picture perfect wedding.  Melissa and Kevin had rain for most of their day, but the sun came out after the ceremony just in time to capture some gorgeous outdoor photos. 

My favorite details of this wedding include the gorgeous, summery bouquets and the wedding cake, I can't get over the awesome grey ribbon details. 

Photo credits to Erin Johnson Photography.
 

Love the texture of this bouquet and the peonies...simply gorgeous.




Sometimes a simple calla lily bout is all you need.


Their dog (Charlie) is awesome.  I want to take him home!  I love that Melissa and Kevin incorporated him into their day.
















Stunning.  They look like models. I love Melissa's soft curls.




Love this cake.

Vendors:
Reception location: International Market Square, Minneapolis, MN
Photographer: Erin Johnson Photography
Dress: Amy Kuschel from L’atelier in St. Paul, MN
Glowers: Serendipity Flowers, St. Paul, MN
Reception Décor (drapings and lanterns): Richfield Flowers and Events

Thanks to Paige and Erin of Erin Johnson Photography for sharing this beautiful wedding!

Do you have a real wedding to submit? Please send to eatdrinkpretty@gmail.com.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Pulled pork tacos


I love Mexican food and am thrilled at how delicious these pulled pork tacos turned out for dinner last night.  I found this recipe while googling pork tacos and almost passed it by because using a slow cooker in the summertime seems a bit weird.  It was actually awesome because I prepped for about 15 minutes in the morning and by the time I got home from work the pork was tender and shredded easily.  It also had great flavor.  And because the slow cooker did all the work during the day, I didn't have to use the stove on a 90 degree evening. 



Slow-Cooker Pulled Pork Tacos (adapted from Real Simple)

Ingredients

2 cups store-bought salsa, plus more for serving
2 tablespoons chili powder
2 tablespoons dried oregano
2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
kosher salt
1 2 1/2-pound boneless pork butt or shoulder, trimmed of excess fat
18 corn tortillas
1/2 cup fresh cilantro sprigs
3/4 cup sour cream
1 lime, cut into wedges

Directions

1.In a 4- to 6-quart slow cooker, combine the salsa, chili powder, oregano, cocoa, and 1 teaspoon salt. Add the pork and turn to coat.
2.Cook, covered, until the meat is tender and pulls apart easily, on high for 4 to 5 hours or on low for 7 to 8 hours.
3.Twenty minutes before serving, heat oven to 350° F.
4.Stack the tortillas, wrap them in foil, and bake until warm, about 15 minutes.
5.Meanwhile, using 2 forks, shred the pork and stir into the cooking liquid. Serve with the tortillas, cilantro, sour cream, lime, and extra salsa.

Modifications: I added some salt, red pepper and 1 tablespoon cumin to the salsa mixture. I used wheat flour tortillas instead of corn tortillas. Serve with black beans, cheese, lettuce, tomatoes, cilantro, avocado, red onion, sour cream and a side of rice.  

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

A breakfast at Tiffany's brunch


{Photo credits: Martha Stewart and Cannelle et Vanille)

I am co-hosting a "Breakfast at Tiffany's" brunch this Sunday in honor of my sister Katie. She's not really into traditional bridal showers so this is a bridal shower disguised as a brunch.

Here is a list of some of the fun details we have planned:

- An awesome brunch menu. I have to admit, I am a bit obsessed with brunch. It actually might be my favorite meal which is why I'm so excited for the menu for Sunday; quiche, homemade muffins or scones (made by Nikki of Lovely Scribbles), potatoes, bacon, fruit salad, and made to order belgian waffles

- a champagne infusion bar. We are going to have bottles of champagne with a build-your-own brunch cocktail including peaches and peach juice for bellinis, raspberries and orange juice for mimosas.

- a dessert table including Tiffany-inspired cupcakes, Tiffany blue favor boxes filled with macarons and a donut tower (which was a special request from the bride-to-be).

- Tiffany blue linens (I hope, I have yet to call a party rental place) with light pink napkins

- White carnation balls (if I can find a floral foam sphere) and other white flowers from the Minneapolis Farmer's market

- A white tent with a crystal chandelier

- Cute Tiffany-blue and pink invites and paper products. I downloaded this printable invitation via Nonpareil Magazine, and adhered it to Tiffany blue paper.  I am also using this design for placecards and to display the menu. 

If you have any additional fun ideas let me know, I still have a few more days to go crazy!

Monday, June 21, 2010

A perfect weekend


Last weekend was perfect because it included all my favorite things; spending time with family and good friends, gorgeous weather, hanging out in my backyard, a lot of great food and sparkling wine. 

Here is my weekend in photos.

My good friend Emily planted an herb garden for me on Friday.  She's the best.

The herb garden has chives, basil, mint as well a some kind of pepper (this one is an experiment, we'll see if it lives).

I have to remember to water the herb garden everyday!

I can never have too much sparkling rose. 

Our run-down fence in the backyard and a lovely sun beginning to set.

A delicious dinner prepared by good friends Libby and Biffer.  They made surf and turf; bacon-wrapped filet mignon, scallops, shrimp, mussels, mushroom risotto and broccoli with holandaise. 

The mussels were prepared in a garlic, butter and white wine sauce.  Divine.

The lighting in my backyard Saturday night was incredible so we were experimenting with my camera.  I like this shot that Jason (nickname Biffer) took of me.

Libby and Biffer acting as models as I tried to experiment with the gorgeous lighting.  I actually like this shot of the two of them because it seems like they forgot about me and are in their own little world.  Erik and I are the best man and matron of honor in their upcoming destination wedding.

A simple, yet delicious dessert of vanilla ice cream, strawberries and mint (from my new herb garden!).

Yesterday was spent at my parent's house celebrating father's day.  My older brother Ron and his wife Nikki brought peach shortcake over for dessert.  It was as good as it looks.

Peach Shortcakes (recipe adapted from Kraft)

Ingredients

1 cup flour
1/4 cup plus 2 tsp. sugar, divided
2 tsp. Baking Powder
1/2 tsp. lemon zest
4 oz. (1/2 of 8-oz. pkg.) Cream Cheese, cubed
1/3 cup plus 1 Tbsp. milk, divided
3 large fresh peaches (1-1/4 lb.), sliced
1-1/2 Tbsp. lemon juice
1 cup thawed COOL WHIP Whipped Topping

Preparation

Heat oven to 425ºF.

MIX flour, 2 Tbsp. sugar, baking powder and zest in large bowl. Cut in cream cheese with 2 knives or pastry blender until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Stir in 1/3 cup milk until mixture forms dough.

USE floured hands to divide dough into 8 balls; place, 3 inches apart, on baking sheet sprayed with cooking spray. Flatten to 1/2-inch thickness; brush tops lightly with remaining milk. Sprinkle with 2 tsp. of the remaining sugar.

BAKE 12 to 15 min. or until golden brown. Meanwhile, combine peaches, remaining sugar and lemon juice. Cool shortcakes slightly; split in half. Fill with peach mixture and COOL WHIP just before serving.

I hope you had a wonderful weekend as well!  Happy Monday!