Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Sponsored post: Storkie invitations

I consider myself somewhat of a crafty gal. Usually when I plan a party I start off by dreaming big. I want to make everything by hand, including invitations. What ends up happening is I get overwhelmed with all the details and end of turning to a company like Storkie, which saves me time and results in cuter invitation than I could have ever made myself.

One of the unique aspects about Storkie is their full range of customization capabilities.  Whether it is changing card stock type (shimmer, recycled, and magnet options), changing graphics (color and even design combinations), or customizing wording and text layout, they have created a full design system that is quick and easy to use.  You've seen how many bridal showers I've hosted, right?  Check out Storkie's selection of adorable bridal shower invitations and they even have wedding invitations and save-the-dates!


Of course after all the weddings come the baby showers.  Check out the hundreds of options of baby shower invitations.

Storkie even has invitations and cards for everyday occassions like birthday partys invitations and Christmas cards.Next time you are hosting an event, think twice before getting out the cardstock, double-sided tape and paper cutter.  Just head over to Storkie and you can thank me later for the hours of time saved.

This post is sponsored by Storkie invitations.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Real party: a lovely bridal shower

Photographer Kimberly Genevieve submitted this gorgeous shower and I knew it's sweet simplicity would be perfect for Eat Drink Pretty.

Kimberly is a Los Angeles based wedding photographer who shot this shower for her friend back in May. Many of the details in this shower were thrifted or hand-made.

This shower is great inspiration for the upcoming tea party/baby shower I am co-hosting in the next couple weeks.













Thursday, August 25, 2011

Heading up north

{Photo credit: Wikipedia}

I am heading up north first thing Friday morning for a weekend bachelorette party.  We rented a cabin, pontoon and will be soaking up lots of sun all weekend.  I am a bridesmaid in my friend Nicole's wedding and she is an outdoorsy gal so this bachelorette party is perfect.

Myself and another bridesmaid have a fun Mexican fiesta dinner planned for Saturday evening with lots of margaritas, guacamole, pulled pork tacos and queso.

It's the perfect way to spend one of the last weekends of the summer.

I hope you enjoy your weekend!


Savory muffins

{Photo credit: The Kitchn}

I'm really trying to get motivated to get back into the kitchen. These savory muffins may just do the trick. Though I may need to make a batch of sweet muffins as well for balance.

Savory sun-dried tomatoe and cottage cheese muffins (recipe from 101 Cookbooks)

Ingredients

1 cup plain cottage cheese (low-fat is fine)
3/4 cup parmesan cheese, freshly grated
1/4 cup flour (see headnotes)
1 cup almonds, very finely ground
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 cup sun-dried tomatoes (in oil), finely chopped
1/4 cup basil, finely chopped
1/4 cup water
4 eggs, lightly beaten
1/2 teaspoon salt

Directions

Preheat oven to 400F degrees. Line a muffin pan with medium-sized paper baking cups, you'll need nine of them.

Put the cottage cheese into a bowl with all but 1/4 cup of the Parmesan cheese, the flour, ground almonds, baking powder, sun-dried tomatoes, basil, water, and eggs, and season with salt, then mix all together.

Spoon the mixture into the muffin cups 3/4 full, scatter with the remaining Parmesan, and bake for 30-35 minutes, or until set, risen, and golden brown. Serve as hot or at room temperature.

Makes 9 muffins.

The Kitchn replicated the recipe but added some proscuitto.  You can also add ham or bacon to the batter prior to spooning the mixture into the muffin cups.
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I have a glorious couple days off work. Thursday will be spent running errands and trying to sneak in a nap with my kitty.  Erik and I are going to lunch together, too.  I can't wait.  It will be my first lazy day in months.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Minnesota lake life photo shoot - part 2, the details

Thanks for checking back for part 2 of the Callie V Photography Minnesota lake life photo shoot. Today is all about the pretty details and cute bride and groom couple.

We couldn't have asked for a more beautiful day or a more gorgeous lake home for the shoot. There were acres of lush green lawn, sparkling water and picturesque views.

Callie and team set up a gorgeous tablescape right on the lake shore.  Ranunculus in bud vases lined the table. 


The San Pelligrino bottle served as inspiration for the shoot. 






How awesome is this cocktail/lemonade table? 




Callie and her team had no shortage of nautical details to incorporate into the shoot.
The photo shoot was so lovely and a perfect way to celebrate the end of summer.  When it's cold and snowy in Minnesota I will look back on the shoot to keep me warm.

The shoot was a huge success and featured on Style Me Pretty!  Awesome job to Callie and everyone involved.

Photography: Callie V Photography / Dessert table: Eat Drink Pretty / Table, chair, linen and ceremony backdrop rental: Apres Party and Tent Rental / Flowers: Sassafras Floral / Ceremony and Reception Location: Private home in Minnetrista, Minnesota / Invitations: Tupy Boutique / Hair: Smart and Chic Bride / Make-up: Tina Beaupre / Shoes: Badgley Mischka / Dress: Marisa / Necklace: A.B.S. by Allen Schwartz / Chevron Tray: Tilly Maison

Monday, August 22, 2011

Minnesota lake life photo shoot - part 1, dessert table

I was lucky to be asked to be a part of Callie V Photography's I heart Minnesota lake life photo shoot a few months back. The concept was all about nautical details, inspired by a San Pelligrino Limonata bottle.  The photo shoot was beautiful and was recently featured on Style Me Pretty!  I'm doing a two-part feature so be sure to come back tomorrow to see the adorable bride and groom and all the gorgeous details.

Callie shared this inspiration board and I went to work. My vision for the dessert table was to keep it clean and simple with delicious, lemony treats and navy accents. 



I incorporated lemons into the table by submerging them in water in clear, cylinder vases.  Easy, affordable and it created a huge impact. 

I made lemon curd tartlets with a dollup of whipped cream and lemon zest and placed them on a cake stand for height.
I cheated and used a store-bought lemon cake mix to make cupcakes but topped them with homemade lemon buttercream, accented with a lemon drop.


Callie asked that I incorporate s'mores into the table to fit within the lakeside theme so I bundled them inside a souffle cup and tied with a yellow ribbon.


I also made mini lemon cupcakes with a bit of lemon zest for color. 

I was really happy with how the table turned out and have to thank my sister for helping me a ton that day!  She kept me calm while I fretted/stressed about melting buttercream and sticky gumballs due to the heat.  In the end, everything worked out!

Thanks to Callie V for including me in this gorgeous shoot.  Tomorrow's post will include the tablescape, lemonade/cocktail stand and a cute bride and groom! 

Friday, August 19, 2011

Confession: not a real post

{Photo credit: Canelle et Vanille}

I managed to find 3 minutes to sneak in to write this (fake) post. It's not real because it has no substance and it's really just a chance for me to once again, apologize for not being a good blogger the past few weeks.

Work is kicking my ass beyond comprehension. I get home from work and Erik and I eat cereal or watermelon for dinner. Seriously. He's been great and cooked a couple nights here and there but it's really not his strength. And apparently not mine either. Or maybe it's the not having time that's my weakness.  I miss my kitchen.

I need to get through next week and then things should quiet down.

In the meantime, this image makes me smile because it reminds me of the tea party/baby shower my family is hosting for my sister-in-law (in early September), Nikki who is having a baby girl in November. Tea sandwiches, scones, petit fours, macarons, fresh flowers...this shower will be all things pretty and sweet.

I can't wait to share it with you.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Whole Foods Cooking Class: Congee

I took yet another Whole Foods cooking class all about Chinese Dim Sum the other weekend and my favorite dish was this Congee. It is easy, full of veggies and super flavorful.

To me, any dish with rice is comforting.  Being filipino, growing up I ate rice every single day.  Even with breakfast sometimes. Rice reminds me of sitting around the dining room table with my family.  We did that every evening.  I definitely want to do that when I have children someday. 

Congee (recipe credit to Ani Loizzo of Whole Foods)

2 cups sushi rice, rinsed well
8 ounces sliced shiitake mushrooms
1 medium onion, sliced
1 cup shredded carrots
2 baby bok choy, thinly sliced
1 stalk lemongrass, pounded and minced
2 inches of ginger, peeled and minced
2 green onions, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons toasted sesame seeds
1/4 cup sesame oil

Directions

Combine sushi rice and three cups of water in a medium pot with a lid and bring to a simmer. Cook for 30-35, or until the rice is very soft and creamy, stirring occassionally.

Meanwhile, heat the sesame oil in a very large pan and cook mushrooms, onions, carrots, bok choy, lemongrass and ginger until soft and brown, about 20-25 minutes. Stir together rice, vegetables, green onions and sesame seeds, season to taste and serve.

Serves 8 as a side dish.

This dish is great served plain but also with a splash of soy sauce.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Donuts

{Photo credits: Tartelette Blog}

There is a relatively new show on Cooking Channel called Unique Sweets. I watch it before I go to bed on Sunday nights and it's basically one half hour show dedicated to a specific dessert. Last week was pies and the other night was donuts.

Do you know how much you crave donuts when you fall asleep watching a show that travels around the US showcasing the tastiest donuts? Now all I can think about is eating a glazed donut, or chocolate maybe. I would even take one with sprinkles. Or jelly filling.

And I'm not the type of person usually likes sweets or would EVER think of eating a donut for breakfast.  Unless I bake them myself.  Which I've done.

I need a new Sunday evening hobby.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Style Me Pretty feature!

A couple months ago I was a part of a lakeside photo shoot concepted, designed and photographed by Callie V Photography.  She reached out to MN wedding vendors and creative types to join her in the shoot and I designed the dessert table.

The shoot was so lovely, soft yellows and blues...set on a picturesque private lakehome in Minnesota on a gorgeous summer day.  I was happy to be a part of it and even happier when I learned it was going to be featured on Style Me Pretty!

The feature went up on Friday, head over there and check it out to see many photos and a list of all the awesome vendors that helped make this photoshoot happen.

Friday, August 12, 2011

Homemade lemonade

{Photo credits: Martha Stewart}

Have you ever made homemade lemonade? It's the best. Before summer is over be sure to squeeze some lemons (also great for relieving stress!), grind up some sugar superfine and serve at your next BBQ.

Recipes:

Lemonade, pink lemonade, limeade
Lemonade with blueberries

Add vodka as needed.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

S'mores!

So apparently yesterday was National S'mores Day, I'm a little late to the party but...all the s'mores around the web got me really hungry for some toasty marshmallows. I searched around old blog posts and found some pretty tasty s'mores that I've featured over the past couple years.

I created a s'mores table for Libby and Biffer's engagement party last fall and it was a lot of fun. Nothing is better than the coziness of a bonfire and sitting around with friends making s'mores. And now that fall is approaching the smell of bonfires will soon be in the air. Awesome.

My sister and her husband had a s'mores stand set up at their wedding reception with a bonfire outside. My sister LOVES s'mores. I bet this post is making her very hungry!

You've probably noticed that I've been slacking off a bit with posts lately.  I, again, have to blame that on work.  It's been INSANE...a new business pitch (which we won so that's awesome!), some travel, client presentations, etc. 

Plus, my internet slows ways down and basically doesn't work starting everynight at 8:45pm.  It's been doing this for a couple months and you think either my husband or I have called customer service about it?  Nope.  So that's on my to-do list today. 

I hope you are all having a slower, more relaxing summer than I am.  Maybe I'll catch my breath in the fall.  Fingers crossed...

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Give me pie, please

{Photo credit: Bakerella and Eat Drink Pretty}

The past couple days I have had a major craving for fresh berry pie. I think it's all the gorgeous raspberries I passed by at the Farmers' Market last week while thinking to myself...I should really buy some and bake a pie. But guess what? This entire summer I have had no major desire to cook or bake. It's been too hot and sticky and the thought of turning my oven on just doesn't sound good to me. I know...it's kind of sad isn't it?

Where is the best place to purchase a pie in the Twin Cities? Please comment and I swear I will buy one this evening and probably eat the entire thing.  Or...if you want to mail me a pie that would work, too...wait, can you mail pies? Just googled it and sure enough...Harry and David allows you to order pie and get it shipped overnight!  Oh my goodness...

Who wants to be my best friend and send that pie to me???!!!! Just kidding.  Sort of.

Monday, August 8, 2011

A rustic ice cream dessert table

I designed an ice cream dessert table for my friend Nicole's recent bridal shower. The bridal shower theme (hosted by her future mother-in-law and bridesmaids) was an outdoorsy, camping theme, which fits Nicole perfectly. So with that theme, the ice cream table became somewhat rustic to blend in.

Please excuse the terrible lighting in the photos. The shower was held in a dimly-lit ballroom and I usually photograph in natural light, I don't have fancy flashes. Anyway, you get the idea...

I used burlap as a tablecloth and mason jars with brown labels and ribbon for all the toppings.  Huge thanks to Jody, Nicole's Maid of Honor for bringing all the toppings!
I arranged everything on big white platters lined with burlap and topped with cones and waffle cups.  FYI - the waffle cups were the most popular, I should have bought more!
Sprinkles are Nicole's favorite so we made sure to have tons of those. 
I used a big chalkboard to label the ice cream table, "Nicole's North Woods Ice Cream Shop", to go along with the theme, of course.


I put white hydrangea in low vases and branches in mason jars. 

For varying height I used cake platters as well.
I also put pinecones in apothecary jars and cylinder vases.  Here's the bride-to-be with her ice cream sundae, they were delish and a big hit with all the guests!

This table was actually pretty simple.  When you host as many parties as I do you begin to own quite a collection of random platters, crafty objects and vases (my husband not so fondly refers to it as hoarding).  Everything on the table was already in my possession so the only items I purchased was the food.  When going with a rustic theme you can easily use branches, wild flowers, etc to keep costs low.