Sweet Tooth | Balsamic Blueberries Dessert

balsamic-blueberries

We were over at our good friends’ house, having just eaten a delicious meal and were playing a fun round of  the board game “Ticket to Ride,” when it was suddenly time for dessert. Our friend pulled out a lovely dish from her oven containing saucy blueberries and proceeded to serve it up with vanilla ice cream. We were stunned to find out the dessert we had been smelling was blueberries cooked with BALSALMIC VINEGAR! You may think this sounds a little strange or off-putting…. well, you have to give it a try before you can judge.

We licked our bowls clean and helped ourselves to seconds. It was delicious!!

Of course when I had the chance to use the recipe myself I tried recreating it. Mine came out smelling a bit too strong of vinegar…. and I found out the other day why! I must have let the vinager boil, which, according to America’s Test Kitchen only enhances the pungent vinegar taste/smell. So make sure to just simmer the balsamic when you’re cooking the blueberries 🙂

You’ll find the recipe here from Epicurious… they combine peaches with the blueberries which I’m sure must be delicious but it’s great with blueberries alone too. It is hands down one of the simplest/quickest desserts to make and sure to be loved by all! I would say it even might be healthy, too. 🙂 I hope you enjoy as much as we did!

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Au jardin | A garden themed baby shower!

I’ve been looking forward to this post ever since my friend Kat (blogger @ Withywindle) and I decided to host a baby shower together for our friend Johanna! So I’m excited to finally share some pictures from the event.

Couple of things you should know:

  • We decided to make it garden themed partially because Johanna is vegetarian and super healthy…and because it was spring, and because it’s so darn cute!
  • Much of the credit for the way this shower turned out I owe to my friend. She gave up her beautiful house for the event, did most of the decorating and a great deal of the cooking!
  • Many of our ideas were from other blogs which we stumbled upon probably through Pinterest (I’ll credit them below the pics)
  • A classic children’s book can make a great guest book! Have the ladies sign the inside of the book and write a note to the baby
  • Cake Batter popcorn is really really addicting

Garden Baby shower

Credits & Links

Luscious Lemon Squares

My take on Mini Spinach Quiche

Mini Fruit Tarts

Mini Caprese Salad Bites

Inside Out Carrot Cake Muffins

 Garden Baby Shower

Credits & Links

Birthday Cake Batter Popcorn

Some garden inspiration gathered here

The best and easiest Tissue Paper Poms tutorial

Cute graphic design elements

I learned a lot throwing this little shower. It was so much fun, we had a great turn out, and the food was all delicious! We were pretty pleased, to say the least. Aside from all the baking, I really liked learning to make tissue poms! I hadn’t done any before but my green poms ended up looking like heads of lettuce, which was pretty perfect! 🙂

Check out Kat’s cute post of the same event with her beautiful pics here!

Here’s one more baby shower idea I had to share from Sea Kettle Diaries –a flowery onesie bouquet! One of the cleverest, prettiest gifts!

No-Bake Nutter Butter Nutella Pie

Happy Friday everyone! Since it is Friday, it’s time for a dessert recipe.

I’m a huge sucker for sweet things and I grew up baking a lot. Whenever my family was having company over (which was pretty often), I was typically the one that made the dessert, so I really miss baking as frequently as I used to. I made this recipe a few weeks ago when we had friends over and it turned out delicious. How can you go wrong with Nutella PIE with Nutter Butter crust?!! Oh and did I mention you don’t have to bake this and you can throw it all into your KitchenAid? Extra big points for it being quick and easy to whip up. I found this keeper here on Eat, Live, Run. Make sure to travel over there to see her pretty pictures.

mixing the cream cheese

You’ll Need: (copied from Eat, Live, Run)

for the crust-
24 nutter butter cookies
1/4 cup butter

for the filling-
2-8 oz. packages cream cheese, softened
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup nutella
1/2 cup whipping cream

for nutella ganache {optional}
1/4 cup nutella
1/4 cup cream {or more if you like a thinner ganache}

Step-By-Step

Spray 9-inch pie plate with non-stick cooking spray and set aside.

{1}Place nutter butter cookies into food processor and grind until they are fine crumbs. Stir together with melted butter.

{2}Press into prepared pie plate. Place into refrigerator to chill.

{3}For the filling, whip cream cheese and sugar together until well blended. Stir in vanilla and nutella. Scrape sides of bowl and mix again briefly. Stir in cream and then increase speed and whip 3 minutes or until very thick.

{4}Pour into pie crust and smooth the top. Refrigerate until set, at least 2 hours.

To serve, prepare nutella ganache by microwaving nutella and cream together until a thin sauce forms. Drizzle over pieces of pie.

Nutter Butter Nutella Pie

A few things to note:

  • I had my pie in the fridge for at least 3 hours and it still wasn’t quite set enough when I cut into it. Either I didn’t whip it long enough, or my fridge hardens pies very slowly. Next time I make this I might try popping it in the freezer for a few hours instead.
  • By the time dinner was over and digested, I was ready to dig into the pie and there was no time to make a ganache. It was totally great without it but if you have the patience to drizzle some more chocolate over it, by all means, go ahead! It definitely pretties up the pie… 🙂
  • This is a dangerous one to keep around the house… leftovers sure didn’t last long!

Wednesday Roundup | Easter Time!

Easter is such a fun time for crafts. There are just so many adorable ideas out there, it’s hard to decide which ones to try! Since I was home this past week, I got to dye Easter eggs with my little sister. It was a blast since neither of us have dyed eggs in years…and I don’t think an Easter is complete without a few real dyed eggs.

easter egg dyeing

The only downside to the egg dyeing party was that we only had 6 eggs in the house and we couldn’t find any good rubber bands. We did the best we could, though… 🙂

While at Wal Mart the other night, I picked up some crochet thread, water balloons, and liquid starch so I could do this fun craft I’ve been dying to try. It was much messier and more time consuming than I thought it would be, but I think the end result was worth it!

Here are some other DIY ideas to try for Easter. Hope you enjoy!

Easter DIY Ideas

(1)  (2)  (3)  (4)  (5)  (6)  (7)  (8)  (9)  (10)  (11)  (12)

Breakfast at home in Southport, NC!

I’m home today… at my parents’ house that is, in North Carolina! Quick life update: I got a new job which won’t start until April 9 so I’ve been on “vacation” since my last day which was the 27th. I highly recommend this “break” in between jobs if you’re ever in a similar situation and if the new job can be flexible for when you start! 🙂

I got here 2 days ago and have been totally enjoying sleeping in, eating mom’s cooking, spending time with my little sister, going to the BEACH,… etc.!

Today my sister and I didn’t wake up until 10! Our parents weren’t around so Sarah and I made this Buttermilk Blueberry Breakfast Cake together (from Alexandra Cooks). This was a recipe I found on Pinterest over a month ago but I hadn’t tried it yet since blueberries have been pretty hard to come by.  My mom had a bag of frozen blueberries, so I just defrosted those and used them. Sarah and I think it turned out great!

This is the sister Sarah,… the youngest in our family, and the only one still at home (senior in high school).

Sarah and the blueberry breakfast pie

Blueberry breakfast
The buttermilk in this recipe made this cake moist and delicious 🙂 Hope you can try it sometime soon!

Buttermilk Blueberry Breakfast Cake