Feel Good Friday.

Welcome to the weekend loveys! Time to spill all of your spooky plans for the next two days. Any cute costumes in the works? Fun holiday theme parties? What kind of candy did you buy for your trick or treaters?? My personal faves are sour patch kids and mini reese peanut butter cups. Yum. Have you ever made your own PBcups? If you need something fun to do this weekend, check out my recipe for how to make them at home. I myself try to forget I know how to make them because they are oh so addicting. 

Take a look at my fun project for the weekend! I will be babysitting my three little munchkins overnight, and a graveyard cake is definitely on the to do list. I am thinking of adapting the idea and to use a collection of cupcakes instead of a cake or pudding – I love the idea of chocolate covered strawberries as pumpkins, white chocolate covered nutter butters as ghosts, and milano tombstones. I always have so much fun with little helping hands… 

Now for this week’s feel good friday clicks!

for those of you reading on iphones, ipads, or in emails… click the bold word

Food 52 shares their favorite 8 homemade halloween desserts.

Why didn’t I think of this!

As if I could fall any further in love with Anderson Cooper. Food+AC = Love.

Learn how to party like a … Culinista?

How bout doing as my boy Irvin does and host a homemade  ice cream social with friends?

Get into the mind of your favorite Chefs. Don’t mind if I do(wnload).

George Banks’ house and therefore, my dream house, is for sale. 

Have you ever seen a WAVE of WINE? Yea, neither had I. Woah.

For my city readers: make your bike totally steal proof.

Twinkle Twinkle little flower.

One of my favorite vintage Apple commercial. 

And finally …. 

cookie that will send you to rehab?

Have a relaxing weekend my little boys and gouls.

Boo!

images from Bon Appetit and The Special Recipes.com

How to: A Ruffled Birthday Cake.

Didn’t I say I was dreaming of baking this cake on Friday? Well I forgot to mention the little tid bit of information that there was actually the perfect occasion for that to happen – Mama’s birthday.

Now, Mama might not have wanted to celebrate this year, especially not two days in a row, but when you have a daughter like me, it is pretty damn difficult to avoid sweets and birthday candles. However, as much of a birthday princess as I am, for the first time I kind of understood the feeling. I’ll remind you all that this year was the beginning of the end, the year I didn’t welcome turning another number older with open arms – yup, from here on out we are just getting, dare I say that we are actually getting, old? Oy vey.

However, I think I have the perfect fix for the dreaded birthdays that all of us 21 and overs will face once a year… The beautiful birthday cake. Ruffles, the quintessential little girl’s fashion dream, and the perfect celebratory cake accent.

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The Day My Camera Fell in Love.

 

 As promised, here at the photographs from this Saturday’s Food and Drink writer meet up at R2L restaurant. The restaurant itself is located on the 37th floor of Two Liberty Place on 16th between Market and Chestnut streets. A truly hidden gem, the luxury of your dining experience begins as soon as you board the single hidden elevator at the back of a corridor that takes you to the restaurant lobby. A unique experience in that way, but also a special one because of the endless views of the city that are at your disposal from any table in the place.

We were seated in one of their private rooms for the duration of the food photography chat. 

The natural light was ideal for photographs. I could only dream of having great exposure like that every day!

After Chef Stern spoke to us, and photographer Eric Mencher gave us a few tips and told us about his experience in the the food photography industry, out came the stars of the day. 

The Food. 

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The Brunch Pizza.

On Saturday I spent the afternoon at the Philadelphia Food and Drink Writers meet-up at R2L restaurant. This was one of the many beautiful dishes my camera had a chance to gawk for an hour before the tasting commenced. Thank you to R2L, not only for your beautiful views of Philadelphia, but for your photogenic cuisine. Thank you to La Phemme Phoodie for hosting the little get together, and also to Visit Philly and Philly Homegrown for sponsoring. It’s always wonderful being around people that love being around the dining table as much as I do..

Check back tomorrow for more pictures from the day.

A Feel Good Friday.

Well… TGIF after what I felt like was the weirdest most uninspiring week in a while. Anyone else feel the same way?

I hope all of my readers have a nice weekend ahead of them. What are your plans? … or is it one of those wonderful no plans kind of Saturday & Sunday (love them). Any great recipes set aside for a little weekend throw down in your kitchens?

I myself am craving to make ….

Ahmazing.

In my little world this weekend, my Villanova friends are back on the Main Line for homecoming celebrations… and I will be joining all of my food writer friends at R2L tomorrow for La Phemme Phoodie’s food & drink writer workshop. Be prepared for beautiful pictures and lots of food chit chat on Sunday. 🙂

Now get under your coziest blanket and begin the weekend with a few of my lovely clicks from this week. 

Yummy, heart-warming, and a bit of fun… see for yourself.

Hello My Sweet makes Cupcakes for the handsomes in our lives.

Some Thanksgiving Bling.

Halloween Costumes: Puppy Edition

Because I love Athletes…. and Food.

Thanks to Paula, you too can now be the coolest trick or treat house on the block. 

If you love The Notebook….

… you should read this story. Tissues, please.

Pizza lover heaven.

Heyyy Christmas list of my dreams!

Is this the new holiday trend?

And because I missed my best friend an extra lot this week.. A few awesome things that also reminded me of him.

The Oodles of Noodles Museum.

Ohhh baby!

… Fabulous, no?

(Sweetapolita’s Ruffled Celebration cake)

Enjoy the beautiful weather my friends. 

… and thank you Cup of Jo for inspiring this post. Ooh the things I would do to be her assistant.

Homemade Goldfish & Cheez It Crackers.

I attribute my undying love for goldfish to the amount of babysitting I have done in my life. Do you know many times my hands have dug into the same aluminum lined paper bags that tiny germy drooly little hands just found their way out of? Zillions. All I need is a handful and that serves as my fix for the day. There has never been a time, not a diet I have been on, not a promise I could ever make to myself to stay away from them, that has ever kept me from having my handful when the opportunity is made available. In college, when I was feeling naughty, they were the first thing I picked up late night from the convenience store. Most recently, at one of my dreaded stops into Walmart to get a few boxes of too wonderfully priced to say no to Softasilk flour, I picked up the little mini milk carton of the fishies staring at me in the check aisle and treated myself to an afternoon snack that smiles back …. although my smile was totally bigger that day.

I guess you could call it a problem, but I call it a love affair. So when I saw the recipe for Whole Wheat Goldfish crackers on Smitten Kitchen’s website that day in March, I knew I had found my new best friend.

Her recipe calls for whole wheat flour….I couldn’t see myself taking that short cut. If I’m going to do it, I am going to do it right. That’s my motto in life. I also did a careful study of said paper and aluminum bags and tried to figure out what the seasoning was that would make my attempt at these fish even more exact.

Can you keep a secret better than the little ones in my life? Smitten Kitchen missed out on a bit of important flavor.

Dry Cultured Buttermilk… You can find it here, or at your local Whole Foods or Supermarket baking aisle.

Click to Print!

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Love’s Kitchen (and a giveaway)!

Introducing this week’s obsession,

movieshut.info

you can find it in your “new movies” collection, my little Netflixers.

A British film made for gourmands, food lovers, and romantics alike, Love’s Kitchen is positively adorable and truly inspiring. The plot is predictable but in that perfectly acceptable, feel good kind of way. The actors are all lovable, and, if you didn’t fancy a man in Chef whites before, you will as soon as the first scene comes to a close! It’s a tear jerker at times, leaves you LOLing at others, but mostly it is a film that has your mouth watering at some beautiful examples of English cuisine. And oh, the kitchen! The kitchennnn!!! A huge farm table sits in the center, where all the prep is done.. one day.

I am sure you will have no trouble falling love with this movie as I did, but what I really can’t get out of my mid is the Chef’s signature dessert, a Trifle. It looks divine. Each character that gets a spoonful between their lips has the reaction that every professional and amateur alike wishes for. Just sheer bliss. See for yourself …

And now, I want input from each one of you to help me find the best ever Trifle recipe.

Please comment below and leave a link to a great recipe or give a cookbook suggestion and tell me what your absolute favorite dessert is I will choose one of you to whom I will send a yummy gift package to thrill your sweet tooth!

You do the searching I do the baking… not a bad trade right?

🙂 

Giveaway ends Thursday 10/20. Open to all my US readers!

Apple Slice Sandwiches.

Happy Sunday to my readers! East Coasters … How gorgeous has this fall weekend been? I have been doing a lot of work around the apartment, switching my wardrobe’s seasons, etc with all of our windows wide open. Picture perfect weather. The neighbors have wind chimes, and this weekend they have been making the most beautiful music. Couldn’t ask for a better smile maker!

So I think in all my chit chat about how much I love Fall I have neglected one of my absolute favorite excitements of the season. APPLES. I know we can get them all year round, but it’s just not the same. Those meeealllyy soft summer apples, blehhck! In the Fall, it is perfectly normal for me to enjoy at least an apple a day. I bring them with me on my afternoon errands, or sometimes I will start the day with one sprinkled with cinnamon. And for Thanksgiving, an extravaganza in my home worthy of Bon Appetit coverage, I adore making my favorite Apple Pie. And Dad, he makes homemade apple pear sauce (oh em gee).

And then there is my mama who introduced me to a new way to enjoy apples last weekend. Only my mother would come up with this kind of Apple creation. Her creativity in the kitchen is something I hope I grow to have. ….Introducing Apple Slice Sandwiches. My new go-to apple and ____ (fill in the blank) butter combo. Whether it’s peanut butter, sunflower butter, almond butter, these are fun snacks you can take on the go or enjoy for a snack or dessert. 

You need a sharp knife or a mandoline to make sure that you can cut your apples into thin enough slices. This is my new little guy, Michael Graves at Target. I love it, very versatile and has all the blades you need.

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We Love to Eat.

My Aunt Vera and I have this little thing we sing every time we are together at a dining table. 

It goes a little something like this … “Weee looveee to eeeeat”. 

If there was a way to combine that little song with Happy Birthday, we would’ve this week. All I did was e a t. And l o v e every minute of it.

It started with my favorite, a home cooked lunch by Tita.

It ended with a 3 hour dinner at Paramour in the Wayne Hotel.

There was…

Tita’s Arabic Chicken with Lebanese Cous Cous and delicious pearl onions. 

Tita’s most perfect hummus with warm pita and baby carrots.

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