Herbal Lemonade Station

Can you believe that Easter is less than two weeks away? I swear, it feels like I’m still digesting Thanksgiving dinner. I must be getting old. Needless to say, Erica, Karen and I had to celebrate . . . you know how we do it! Two words: Easter brunch. We got you covered. This year, rather than getting all punch-happy I decided to keep it simple but fun with this DIY lemonade bar. I gathered up a bunch of my favorite herbs and made simple syrups. We tied fresh herbs around the corresponding syrups for identification. Then, I displayed each syrup next to a big batch of unsweetened lemonade so that guests are able to customize their own flavor and sweeten to taste. Be sure to check back for more from our Easter brunch, as we share our modern takes on classic Easter recipes. In the meantime, you can head over to Pottery Barn for a sneak peak, as well other entertaining tips.

Herbal Lemonade Station // HonestlyYUM

Ingredients:

  • 4 cups lemon juice
  • 12 cups sparkling water
  • 1/2 cup fresh mint
  • 1/2 cup fresh basil
  • 1/4 cup dried lavender
  • 1/4 cup fresh rosemary
  • 1/4 cup fresh thyme
  • 5 cups sugar for syrup (or 1 cup for each syrup you plan on making)
  • 5 cups water for syrup (or 1 cup for each syrup you plan on making)

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No-Churn Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream

No churn ice cream. I wish I could say that I had thought of that. I stole this idea from Nigella Lawson and it’s just brilliant. I own an ice cream maker and I must admit that I can count on one hand the times I’ve used it. You have to remember to freeze the bucket and then tediously make the custard– frankly with my busy schedule, I just never have the time. This recipe gives you the same churned ice cream texture with just heavy whipping cream and condensed milk. I know, sounds too good to be true, but let me preface this by saying I too was skeptical about this alleged “no churn” ice cream. The texture is spot on and you can tell it’s more cream-y than custard-y, but I would take this any day. I made one of my favorites–  mint chocolate chip and mixed it up by adding chocolate covered sugar cone chunks. It’s pretty awesome and gives you good ice cream-to-cone-ratio in every bite. And you know how important that ratio is.

Mint Chocolate Chip No-Churn Ice Cream // HonestlyYUM

Ingredients:

  • 2/3 cup sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 1/4 cup heavy whipping cream, chilled
  • 2 tablespoons of rum
  • 1 teaspoon of peppermint extract
  • 4 ounces of semi sweet chocolate
  • 4 sugar cones, crushed (and whole cones for serving)
  • (optional) 2 ounces of semi sweet chocolate for dipping

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Yum, We Love . . .

It’s Friday and I’m pumped!! Sorry, I can’t help myself (I blame the coffee). First off, we won our kickball game last night. That’s right, I play kickball. But seriously, this weekend is gonna be great. My sister is visiting! She lives so far away, and any chance I get to see her is truly special. I also have a couple friends coming into town that I haven’t seen in ages. We’re going to drink so many hydro-tinis . . . hehe.

The Perennial Plate did it again. Check out this stunning footage of their recent trip to Argentina. This is the first of five films, so many more to come. I can’t wait!

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Spicy Roast Cauliflower and Chickpeas

I’m a little cauliflower obsessed (sorry kale, I’ve moved on for a bit). Cauliflower is a really lovely canvas for all kinds of big flavors. This is a version I’ve been making a lot lately: roasted cauliflower with whole cumin and coriander seeds and chiles de arbol. You could substitute for ground spices, but I really suggest using whole spices– it truly transforms a dish with so few ingredients. I also always have these on hand and use them in a variety of dishes so they’re worth having around. Topped off with a cool tangy cilantro-garlic yogurt, this roast cauliflower dish will become a regular in your dinner rotation!

Roast cauliflower

Ingredients:

  • 1 head of cauliflower
  • 1 15-ounce can of cooked chickpeas, drained and patted dry with paper towels
  • 1 teaspoon of cumin seeds
  • 1 teaspoon of coriander seeds
  • 2-4 chiles de arbol (if you like spicy, add even more!)
  • 6 ounces of plain thick yogurt, like Greek yogurt
  • small handful of cilantro, finely chopped
  • 1 clove of garlic, finely minced
  • olive oil
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

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The Desert Penguin

As you’ve probably heard by now, luxury water-cocktails, also known as hydro-tinis, are the talk of the bar scene. But with price tags in the $15, $20, and even $50 range, chances are you’ve passed on giving this intriguing mocktail trend a try. Typically, hydro-tinis call for only the purest of the pure H2O. Agua Mágica in Los Angeles uses a secret in-house purification process that involves both ultraviolet and microfiltration. Forrest Bar in New York imports segments of fallen glacial ice that they melt to make their popular Polar Escape. I decided to see what all the fuss was about, and figured I’d test out my own recipe for the blog. I dove in head first and ordered a pint of purified rain water from Ica, Peru. Ica is one of the driest regions on the planet with an average annual rainfall of just one inch! While currently a desert, penguin fossils have been found in the area (hence the name of the drink). Sure, it was a bit pricey, but not any worse than your standard bottle of booze. The result is a mocktail that leaves you feeling fresh, vibrant, and full of life. I also hear it’s wonderful for the skin. Oh, and the best part . . . no hangover!!

The Desert Penguin // HonestlyYUM

Ingredients:

  • 3 oz purified rainwater from Ica, Peru
  • 12 oz oxygenated water for ice cubes

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Seletti Hybrid

I first spotted Seletti‘s Hybrid dinnerware at my absolute favorite store in the world, Liberty of London. The collection is all about East meets West, literally. Each piece consists of Chinese scenes juxtaposed with European themes and made of bone china for its high levels of whiteness and translucency. How fun would it be to throw a tea party with a table full of these unique plates, cups and bowls?

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