Fast Forward

Ahem.  A year has gone by since I’ve last posted and so many things have changed (for the better).  I am now a mom (!) and a homeowner. It has been quite the year and I still can’t believe I’m writing this post sitting in my freshly renovated apartment looking at my sleeping baby. We’re watching Teen Mom OG, so I mean not everything has changed.

 

Hey, Granola Breath

Making my own granola always seemed like a bit much. Who really does that?  I mean, I don’t own clogs or actually enjoy hiking. I confess that I do own Birkenstocks, but they are absolutely having a come back. Despite my lack of outdoorsiness – I decided to give making my own a try. The recipe turned out to be super easy, delicious and versatile. You can mix in dried fruit or chocolate to enhance the sweetness a bit.  The recipe also allows you to substitute different types of nuts depending on what you have available. Maybe this whole granola thing has me rethinking clogs?  J to the K.

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Dinner Party for 4

I love any excuse to entertain, so when Jordan’s friend started dating his new (much younger) girlfriend, I jumped at the chance to have them both over for dinner. I mean how else am I supposed to get to know (read: judge) her? It turns out she was lovely, mature for her 26 years and made excellent conversation about The Real Housewives.

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I never try to complicate appetizers and focus most of my attention on dinner. I always have crackers, mixed nuts and good olives on hand, just in case. I supplement these basics with 2-3 good cheeses, cured meats and fig spread. Jordan and I conveniently live upstairs from Malt and Mold, an artisanal cheese shop, so good cheese is never far away. Remember to always leave a small dish out for the olive pits.  You don’t want your guests awkwardly putting them on the table or secretly palming them.

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Links for Life

  • I’m always looking to up my hostess game.  (www.cupofjo.com)
  • An inexpensive and fun way to dress up your holiday table.  Best of all, no clean up.  (www.hesterandcook.com)
  • I’m a sucker for anything with gold detail.  Loving these headphones. (www.jcrew.com)
  • A fun read about an extravagant way to see the world in less than a month. (www.nytimes.com)
  • I mean, sometimes you just can’t mess with a classic. Perfect pumpkin pie every time. (www.bonappetit.com)
  • Apparently I’m more panda than fox on this home decor style quiz. (www.apartmenttherapy.com)
  • I mean, dream slippers.  I’m sooooo trendy.  (www.gucci.com)
  • A well priced overnight bag that looks more expensive than the pricetag.  (www.solesociety.com)
  • If you watch Real Housewives of OC, you should probably click this. (www.radaronline.com)
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Hank enjoying some sun this Friday.  Dog bed by Jax and Bones.

 

Salsa Skillet Chicken

When I cook, more often than not I find myself committing to a super complicated recipe that requires some sort of prolonged brine and 15 different spices, most of which I need to purchase the day of. After sitting down to dinner at 9pm, I realize that I probably could have skipped the 1/8 tsp of sumac. Needless to say, I’m trying to become more open to easy recipes that require less prep. I am learning that complicated does not necessarily equal better.

Case in point: this creamy salsa chicken recipe is so easy and seriously tastes great. Serve it over brown rice or quinoa in a bowl with some fresh cilantro and let the compliments roll in.

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Bodega Roses

One of the best things about NYC is the abundance of corner bodegas. I still think about the 24/7 grocery store on 9th Street in the East Village near my old apartment that has e v e r  y t h i n g you could ever need. I once counted five different types of almond butter. The bodega situation in Gramercy is not as abundant but is still top notch. Hank and I incorporate a stop at the local corner store for fresh flowers at least once a week. I used to detest ‘bodega roses’ and always ponied up for the hydrangeas instead ($15!) but they would only last three days before wilting. For the past several months I’ve been ignoring my initial aversion and opting for the roses (two dozen for $10, uh deal alert). I’ve really perfected the bodega rose arrangement and it lasts for at least five to seven days. Check out my tips below for making your $10 roses look like they came from the local florist instead of the local bodega.

The bounty at the local corner grocer
The bounty at our local corner grocery

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