Pretty Things: December 2016

Pretty Things:  December 2016

  1.  Dry Sparkling Sodas:  I first tried these when I was pregnant with Beau, and I fell in love with the cucumber flavor.  Throughout the whole pregnancy, I was on a search for herbal, infused type drinks.  These have between 45 to 75 calories per bottle.  At $8 for a 4-pack, they are a little bit of a splurge, but worth it once in awhile.  Dry Sparkling sodas would also be a great option to offer at a holiday party to guests who may not be drinking.  (In addition to the flavors below, I’ve also seen vanilla bean, Fuji apple, blood orange, and Rainier cherry).tas_drydrinks060116_17302722_8col
  2. Chocolate, Olive Oil, and Rosemary Cake with Candied Blood Oranges by Domestic Gothess:  Recently I made my first dessert using olive oil instead of butter or vegetable oil.  I’d like to try a few more, and this cake just looks really festive and delicious.  I’ve actually never had blood oranges, but I think they’re so pretty.  Only I wish they were called something else, maybe garnet oranges?


3.  Me&Ro:  Fearlessness Silver Pendant  and Me&Ro Silver Lotus Mandala:  If you watch SVU, you’ve probably seen Mariska Hargitay wear these necklaces.  I got them a few years ago for Christmas, and I wear the lotus one every day (and I add the fearlessness pendant on special occasions).  I like the simplicity of these because I don’t wear a lot of jewelry.  These are cute everyday pieces, and the best part is that 100% of the net proceeds go to the Joyful Heart Foundation– Mariska Hargitay’s charity that supports victims of domestic violence.


4.  Ina Garten’s Herbed Goat Cheese from her new book Cooking for Jeffrey:  Herbed Goat Cheese is the first recipe from Ina’s new cookbook that I am dying to make.  I’m sure I’ll make most of them eventually (and if you want to see a very cool project, this guy is making and sharing every single Ina recipe on Instagram— over 800!  He’s done over 200 so far).  Anyway, I feel like this recipe is a little “adult” for my family, so I’ll probably do it at my next girls’ wine night.


5.  Nordic Ware Holiday Cookie Stamps:  These cookie stamps…don’t they feel like something out of a Norman Rockwell painting?  I think shortbread would be ideal for these.  If you need a good shortbread recipe, try Ina’s (as if I’d recommend any other).


6.  Pottery Barn’s Alpine Toile Bedding:  This bedding combines three of my favorite things– toile, Christmas, and sleeping.


7.  Martha Stewart’s Slow Cooker Sicilian Style Beef Stew:  To me, this feels like a Christmas Eve meal.  It’s Christmas-y, but low maintenance since it’s done in the slow cooker.  Plus, the orange, the olives.  Those olives just look delicious.  The recipe calls for it to be served over mashed potatoes, which is usually what I would do for beef stew.  But I feel like this particular beef stew would be best over some creamy polenta, don’t you?


8.  Heather Christo’s Persimmon Crush:  I tried persimmons for the first time this November.  After I found this recipe, I figured I couldn’t speak about it until I’ve tasted one.  Persimmons look like tomatoes, and they must be almost mushy when you eat them.  To me, they taste like a cross between a mango and a plum, both of which I love.  This persimmon crush looks very festive to me, and it’s something a little unexpected (as opposed to something with cranberries or champagne).  If you’ve never peeked around at Heather Christo’s website, you should.  Her photography is beautiful, and her recipes are always a little unexpected, but always delicious and fresh.


Merry Christmas!