Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Beach Party: Clambake

During the warm summer months nothing beats a clambake on the beach.  Its nice to be able to take advantage of the nice weather, eat outside and look out onto the ocean. Today, I'm going to share with you some ideas for entertaining on the beach. the set-up for a dinner party on the beach can be extremely simple with a blanket and a few pillows and a candle or can be more elaborate and you can have a dining room table and chairs on the beach. I personally love the juxtaposition of the formal dining room furniture against the relaxed atmosphere of the beach. I have also included some clambake menu ideas: lobster, clams, mussels, potato salad and corn on the cob, all the best food combined into one meal, what could be better! I hope you are all enjoying the summer and that these pictures inspire you to entertain at the beach. You don't have to make an elaborate clambake, you can have a simple picnic with a sandwich and a bag of chips, no matter what you have to eat it's always nice to have a change of scenery and enjoy the beautiful weather while it lasts.

Middle Eastern Inspired Beach Picnic
Photo courtesy of: Inspired by This

Gorgeous dinner on the beach. I love how the little pillows add a pop of color

Dining room furniture on the beach! I love the candelabra and the string of twinkle lights
Photo courtesy of: Style Me Pretty

How great is the white picnic bench and the colorful floral print pillows and of course i'm a sucker for a chalkboard menu
Photo courtesy of: Imprintables

Cute nautical themed party decor. How cute are those lobster sugar cookies!
Photo courtesy of: Juneberry-lane

I absolutely love the lanterns! They look amazing against the sunset and the ocean!
Photo courtesy of: Mod Vintage Life

Cute Clambake Table Set-Up

Clambake Chalkboard Menu
Photo courtesy of: Inspired by This


One option is to do a One-Pot Clambake
Photo & recipe courtesy of: Bon Appetit

Second option to do make lobster on it's own. This is grilled lobster with Cilantro- Chile Butter
Photo & recipe courtesy of: SAVEUR

Potato Salad
Photo & recipe courtesy of: Beachpeach

Cilantro-lime grilled corn 
Photo & recipe courtesy of: Greens & Chocolate

Grilled Clams with Garlic Drizzle
Photo & recipe courtesy of: Primal Palate

Grilled Mussels with Herb Butter
 Photo & recipe courtesy of: The Bitten Word

Monday, July 7, 2014

Party Trend: Carnival Party

Lions, Tigers and Bears, oh my! What could be more exciting than a carnival birthday party. You can pick and choose carnival elements to incorporate into your party like a red and white stripped tablecloth, circus-inspired dessert table or go full out and get a snow cone machine, cotton candy machine, popcorn machine and a petting zoo, what could be a better theme for a kid's party! Here is some inspiration if you are planning a carnival party.

Red and white stripes and baby blue. I love the clown cupcakes!
Photo courtesy of: Kara's Party Ideas

Carnival Cookies

Carnival Signage
Photo courtesy of: See Sew and Seedlings

Cute "popcorn" cupcakes
Photo courtesy of: Kara's Party Ideas

Circus Carnival Birthday Party Set-up
Photo courtesy of: Etsy

Vintage Carnival Birthday Party
Photo courtesy of: Catch My Party

Cute Circus cake

Snow Cone Cart
Photo courtesy of: Carnival Theme Party

Cotton Candy Machine, YUM!!
Photo courtesy of: Walmart

Vintage Popcorn Machine
Photo courtesy of: Walmart

Saturday, July 5, 2014

Picnic Menu Ideas

Last saturday night I ordered tacos, guacamole and chips from Bar Taco and ate at the beach. While I was sitting at the beach I started thinking about different menu ideas that would be perfect for a picnic. I came up with a few ideas that I wanted to share. I thought about food that is easy to transport and can be served cold. I hope my menu ideas inspires you to plan a picnic for your family and friends this summer.

Picnic Set-up Inspiration

I love the plaid and packaging of this picnic
Photo courtesy of: DIY Projects

Patriotic Red, White & Blue Picnic. I love the flower in the jar and candle. What a nice way to elevate your picnic to the next level
Photo courtesy of: yourhomebasedmom

Pretty picnic inspiration. That last picture is giving me beach envy. sunset on the beach is my absolute favorite thing! 
Photo: I found the photo on Pinterest (not sure where it's from)

Picnic Menu ideas

Asian-inspired picnic menu 

Asian noodle salad in a jar
Photo courtesy of: foxeslovelemons

Chicken pad thai spring rolls
Photo courtesy of: Taylor Made by Taylor Bee

Sushi (pick up ready made sushi from your favorite sushi restaurant or if you are really ambitious make your own sushi)
Photo courtesy of: foodspotting

Mexican-Inspired Picnic Menu

Mexican salad in a jar
Photo courtesy of: A Zesty Bite

Chips and Salsa (perfect containers to bring chips & salsa for a picnic)
Photo courtesy of: I Dream Of

Shrimp Caviche
Photo courtesy of: Muy Bueno Cookbook

Italian-Inspired Picnic Menu

Photo courtesy of: Tasty Trials

Caprese Pasta Salad
Photo courtesy of: Huffington Post

Chicken Kale Caser Salad
Photo courtesy of: Kim's Healthy Eats


Strawberry shortcake in a jar
Photo courtesy of: Babble

Looking for a picnic basket? Here are some choices:

Picnic basket
photo courtesy of & where to buy: Walmart

Bamboo 21-Piece Insulated Picnic Basket
Photo courtesy of & where to buy: Bed, Bath & Beyond

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Dessert Trend: Homemade Ice Pops

During the dog days of summer nothing is more refreshing than an ice pop! Whenever I have a ice pop I am transported back to my days at sleep away camp where we would get an ice pop for snack every afternoon, ahh the good ole' days!

Homemade ice pops have been a big dessert trend for a few years now. In New York City, People's Pop has played a major role in the homemade ice pop trend and has  gained national notoriety. People's Pop even has it's own cookbook, which has great homemade ice pop recipes and beautiful pictures, make sure to check it out.

 Today,  I'm going to share with you some recipes I have found on Pinterest. I have included some boozy pops, which are fun to serve when entertaining because they are a cross between a cocktail and a dessert, what could be better! I also have some simple fruit pop ideas, I absolutely love how the different colors mold together.

 In addition, you will also find links to where you can buy ice pop molds. Once you have the molds you add some fruit, put the molds in the freezer and that's it!  Homemade ice pops are perfect for entertaining. Serving ice pops gives you the ability to make dessert in advance, which always is a good thing.  When entertaining it's important to choose dishes that you can prepare in advance so that you can actually enjoy your party and spend time with your guests and are not stuck in kitchen the whole party preparing the food. Not only are ice pops easy to make, but I'm sure your guests will be impressed that you made the effort to make homemade ice pops instead of serving store bought. Stay cool this 4th of July weekend and relive your childhood memories by indulging in a homemade ice pop.

Grapefruit, Strawberry, Orange and Coconut ice pop
Photo courtesy of: Martha Stewart

Blackberry Bramble Ice Pops
Photo courtesy of: Food52

Cranberry, Mint and Bourbon ice pops
Photo courtesy of: sulia

Love the presentation of the ice pops (the glass containers on the wood tray with the small flower vases.           
Photo courtesy of: Real Simple

Blackberry Prosecco Pops
photo courtesy of: Endless Simmer

Ice Pop Molds: 
Norpro Ice Pop Maker
Photo & purchase through Amazon

Chosigt, Ice pop maker
Photo courtesy: Ikea

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Book Review: Eat More Dessert By Jenny Keller

I recently was at Barnes & Noble and stopped in my tracks when I saw the cover of Jenny Keller's beautiful book Eat More Dessert.  Not only are the photographs in the book stunning, but the book provides easy to follow step-by-step instructions for creating amazing dessert tables.  The book also provides amazing party decor advice as well. What I especially like about this book is how Keller makes creating dessert tables approachable to the average person. I love that her go-to cake recipe is just doctored-up store bought boxed cake mix and she has a great buttercream frosting recipe as well. While I have yet to master Keller's frosting piping techniques I know that I will be using the beautiful dessert tables that are photographed in the book as inspiration for years to come. This book is perfect for anyone who is looking for ways to incorporate dessert tables into there next event or for the avid baker who is looking for some inspiration. You can purchase the book on Amazon or at your local Barnes & Noble. I hope you enjoy the book as much as I do!

beautiful book cover and pictures from the book
Photo Courtesy of: The TomKat Studio

Hydrangea Flower Pot Cupcakes
Photo Courtesy of:  Queen Latifah's Blog

Garden Party Dessert Party
Photo Courtesy of: Little Farmstand

Vintage Baby Shower
Photo Courtesy of: Bird's Party Blog