Gift Guide 2017: The Cook

This is my favorite time of year, not just because it’s the holidays, but also because I get to scour the internet for my favorite gifts for our holiday guide! This list is a mix of items I already have and love and other items I’ve been eyeing. I’ve tried to include a variety of gifts with varying price points, but all of them I think would make your favorite foodie happy!

Winter Citrus Pavlova

Ah, pavlova. There’s something about that sweet, airy and delicate crisp meringue crust, served with rich whipped cream and fresh fruit, that makes this dessert my all time favorite. I don’t usually like my desserts overly sweet so admittedly, it’s hard to find pavlova that’s done right. The contrast of unsweetened cream and super tart fruit to the sugary meringue is a must for me. Before we delve into the ultimate pavlova recipe, I’d love to share an interesting pavlova fact, may I?

Winter Citrus Pavlova | HonestlyYUM (

Did you know that pavlova is not Russian in origin? I know, what?! It’s actually named after Russian ballerina, Anna Pavlova, after she toured New Zealand and Australia in 1926. So this explains why pavlova is traditionally made with tropical fruits found Down Under, like kiwi and passion fruit. See how that tartness plays into it? This Christmas, for the first time ever, I’m making a pavlova wreath for dessert. Not only is it stunning, I feel like it’s the perfect way to close out an otherwise decadent Christmas feast. The best part is that you can dress it up however you like. We made an orange flavored pastry cream but you can substitute it for a lemon or lime curd. If you’re in the Northern Hemisphere during winter months, we suggest trying mandarins, grapefruits, pomegranates or blood oranges as garnish. And if you happen to be in warmer climates, just do as the Aussies do . . .  READ MORE

Blood Orange and Green Chile Margaritas . . . Batched!

Is it just me, or does this holiday season seem a bit emotionally charged? After all, these are pretty turbulent times, and gathering around the table with a dozen-some-odd extended family isn’t exactly the prescription for peace and harmony. The least I can do is offer up a big old batch of booze to stimulate the conversation. Help me, help you.

Blood Orange and Green Chile Margarita . . . Batched! | HonestlyYUM (

As usual, I like to share what I like to drink. As you know, Audrey and I are margarita hounds, so come this time of year blood oranges always seem to find their way into the mix. Spice’em up with a little Ancho Reyes Verde (get a bottle NOW) and you’re in business. Annnnd, because everything is better in excess, I’ve included a big old batch recipe for you and the fam! Happy holidays!!

Blood Orange and Green Chile Margarita . . . Batched! | HonestlyYUM ( READ MORE

Gift Guide 2017: The Bartender

It’s that time again . . . the annual HonestlyYUM bartender/cocktail lover gift guide is here!! Five years ago when I first pulled together this list, it was a bit difficult to find a good variety of bar related products. These days, I have to force myself to stop adding things to the list. I could go on for days! There’s really so much cool stuff out there. Hopefully there’s a thing or two below that tickles your thirst. Enjoy!! READ MORE

Chocolate and Ancho Chile Crinkle Cookies

If you like the combination of chocolate and chiles, these chocolate and ancho chile crinkle cookies have your name all over them! I love my food spicy so I did not hold back on the chile for this recipe, although to me, they have the perfect level of flavor, heat and chocolate. I use two types of chile here: cayenne for the heat and ancho for more of a dried chile flavor that has a lovely subtle hint of dried fruit. You could just use cayenne if you can’t find ancho chile, but I really recommend seeking it out. The combination of ancho chile with bittersweet chocolate is just fantastic and so unique– perfect for any holiday cookie party!

Chocolate and Ancho Chile Crinkle Cookies | HonestlyYUM (


Happy Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving!! Grateful for days like these . . . for family, for friends and for food. Thank you for eating, drinking, and cooking along with us this year. There’d be no YUM without YOU!!

Happy Thanksgiving from HonestlyYUM!

(image by HonestlyYUM)

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