Matcha Smoothie Bowl

Happy 2016, everyone! I hope your holiday was merry, festive, and relaxing. And if your time off was anything like mine and replete of self indulgence, (I’m talking to you, Hasselback Potato Gratin, Stuffing Waffles, Blueberry and Almond Morning Buns, Braised Short Ribs and Linzer Cookies) then you’re probably craving something fresh, green, and raw to help reset your body for the new year. I love making myself a tall glass of green juice in the morning, but heartier smoothies are really more my cup of tea, especially since I’m nurturing a burgeoning baby these days! Smoothie bowls are especially substantial as they are much thicker in consistency and you can add all sorts of fun toppings. So today, I’m sharing my favorite green smoothie bowl, rich in antioxidants, vitamins, folic acid, fiber, and omega-3 fatty acids. The addition of matcha powder not only gives it that necessary AM kick, it gives the smoothie a bright, creamy earthiness that compliments the caramelized sweetness of dates so nicely. Top with your favorite fruit toppings, dig in with a spoon and you’re ready to kick off a great year!

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A Trio of New Year’s Eve Cocktails

Well, there you have it . . . another year in the books. Twenty fifteen was a whirlwind to say the least. Life with a toddler is quite a bit different than life with a newborn. It’s still hard for me to comprehend that there’s a little two-foot-tall person following me around, studying my every move, mimicking my every word. Kinda scary if you stop and think about it. I can’t wait to see what this next year will bring. As always, I wanted to thank you with all my heart for visiting the site this year. HonestlyYUM is a true team effort, and that includes you. Thank you for all your comments. I read every single one, even if I haven’t yet had the chance to respond. Thank you for taking the time to make our recipes, and for sharing them with your loved ones. Now that the site has been around for several years, it’s fun to see that some of you have your go-to recipes from the site for certain occasions. For example, someone told me the other day that they’ve now made my punch for the third Thanksgiving in a row. It’s quickly becoming a family tradition! Ultimately, it all circles back to family and friends, enjoying a little food and drink together in celebration. Speaking of which, we teamed up with IZZE to create this delightful trio of cocktails to help you ring in the new year. What I particularly love about these recipes is that they’re simple enough to make on a casual weeknight with friends, but also festive enough to justify serving at your NYE bash. It’s amazing what a little extra sparkle will do for a party! Once again, thank you for another fabulous year. Here’s to many, many more. Cheers!!

A Trio of New Year's Eve Cocktails | HonestlyYUM

IZZE| HonestlyYUM

A Trio of New Year's Eve Cocktails | HonestlyYUM READ MORE

Blueberry and Almond Morning Buns

I hope everyone enjoyed the long weekend. I sure did. Some highlights: Audrey’s sticky toffee pudding; blowing bubbles with Fiona; Cynar flips; dog walks in the rain; waffles; watching Fiona open presents – speaking of which, she ended up with her own toy cell phone, laptop, purse, and credit cards . . . I suppose it was only a matter of time. After all, this is the same girl who has a huge wad of cash hidden inside her alphabet train. I swear, she’s like a squirrel, hiding currency around the house in case we run out of diapers and forget to pay the utility bill. I digress. I’d say if I had to choose a theme for the holidays it would be baking. In addition to the sticky toffee pudding, and at least a dozen batches of cookies, we capped off the weekend with Sarah’s flaky, buttery, blueberry almond morning buns. They’ve quickly become a household favorite. If you weren’t one of the lucky souls who received a Christmas copy of Sarah’s book, The Sugar Hit, now’s the time to treat yourself. I mean, she has an entire section on midnight snacks for goodness sake. MIDNIGHT SNACKS!! In the meantime, go ahead and give these delightful little guys a try.

Blueberry and Almond Morning Buns | HonestlyYUM

Blueberry and Almond Morning Buns | HonestlyYUM READ MORE

Village to Village Cocktail

It’s hard for me to get out these days. It’s not that I don’t have the opportunity. After Fiona goes down around 7:30pm, I’m a free man. You see, the nights have always been relatively smooth. It’s the mornings that really take it out of me. Two or three consecutive 5:30am wakeup calls, and an evening out is the last thing on my mind. I’d rather bring the bar to me! That’s why I’ve been stocking up on my cocktail book collection. The latest addition: Death & Co. One of my alltime favorite bars, Death & Company has been a constant source of inspiration throughout my career. Three words: Oaxaca Old Fashioned. I’ve been dying to get my hands on the book for over a year now, but you know . . . baby happened. Christmas came early this year, because last weekend I finally picked up a copy, and boy am I in trouble. I can’t put it down. I wanted to start with something refreshing. Something seasonal. Something tequila! First up, the Village to Village – simply put: cocktail perfection. Now if you’ll excuse me, I have some Christmas shopping to do . . .

Village to Village Cocktail | HonestlyYUM

Village to Village Cocktail | HonestlyYUM READ MORE

Braided Sour Cream Cardamom Blackberry Coffee Bread

I don’t consider myself very adept at baking. Some pastry recipes are too time and labor intensive and I tend to “stray” from the recipe. Improvisation and baking don’t well together– you think I would’ve learned that by now . . . But during the holidays, I love spending my days off work taking on a baking project with my family. There’s nothing better than lounging around in pajamas all day with the smell of buttery sweets baking in the oven. I had never made braided sour cream coffee bread before but this one turned out so incredible I think I’ll keep it in heavy rotation even after the holidays! The bread itself is inspired by the traditional Swedish coffee bread, which has no coffee in it but has cardamom in the dough and is filled with sugar and cinnamon. This yeast bread has Daisy sour cream, which gives the dough added moisture and I used the Daisy squeeze bottle, making measuring ingredients easier. The braided part sounds tricky but is really a simple faux braid of overlapping thick strands of dough. I absolutely adore the fragrance of cardamom so I not only added it to the sour cream dough but also added it to the blackberry jam filling. The blackberry and cardamom jam alone is good enough to eat on its own. This recipe is definitely going to become a holiday tradition in our family!

Braided sour cream coffee bread

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Boursin Cheese Platter

A hearty cheese platter is probably the easiest and most impressive course to assemble, which is why it’s one of my favorite things to serve when entertaining. And guess what? Sometimes, it can be the only hors d’oeuvre you’ll need and it doesn’t even require a variety of cheese. Serving a single cheese is plenty sufficient. Boursin® Cheese, for example, has the perfect creamy and crumbly texture and is versatile enough to pair with just about any accompaniments – just be sure to include a bountiful assortment to inspire your guests to taste interesting and surprisingly delicious combinations! Check out a few of our pairing suggestions after the jump . . .

Boursin Cheese Platter | HonestlyYUM

Pomegranate | HonestlyYUM

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