Easter Parade

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Monday, January 31, 2011

Raspberry Bread Pudding


Are you looking for a Valentine's Day dessert that is just
incredible?  This Raspberry Bread pudding will wow
your guests.


I am helping a friend redecorate her home.  While
out shopping for furniture we decided to head to lunch.

We went out to lunch at a local restaurant called Kneaders.
Their specialty is their European style breads.  One
of my favorite things is their Raspberry Bread Pudding.
We decided to get that and share it.  Of course I had to
have a bite of it first before the sandwich and salad.


They warm it and top it with an incredible cream sauce.
It was one of those moments that you roll your eyes
and just melt. 

Did you know that your palate is clean when you first
start a meal and that is why those first bites taste so
good?  That is why I love to order dessert for
an appetizer and share it with the whole table
  Just a bite or two of dessert
when your palate is clean and you are satisfied!

You know the saying, "Life is short, eat dessert first."
Mine must be "Your palate is clean, really taste the dessert,
so eat dessert first." (Or something like that!)


While we were all melting under the table my friend Rachel
and I both said we had a recipe that was supposedly their
recipe.  I got mine out of Tales Under Timp Cookbook.
Rachel decided to make it for a dinner party.


Yes, it tasted exactly like Kneader's Raspberry Bread Pudding.
And - it is so beautiful too.  Those red raspberries just
call out to be served up for Valentine's Day, or really any day.

Raspberry Bread Pudding Recipe

1 1/2 loaves aged or day old,  white bread (I like
to use a heavy type of bread, usually 1 lb. loaves
would be standard.)
1 qt. heavy cream
3 C. sugar
1 egg
1 tsp. vanilla

5 C. raspberries, fresh or frozen (hers were fresh)
1 C. sugar
1/2 C. apple juice

In a large bowl mix the cream, sugar, egg and vanilla. 
Cut bread into 1 1/2 inch cubes and add to cream mixture,
coating the bread well.  Let stand 30 minutes, stirring every
5 minutes to allow cream to absorb.

Mix the raspberries, sugar and apple juice, stirring
until sugar is dissolved.

Layer a 9x13 inch baking pan 3/4 full with the bread mix
and pour fruit filling over the bread mix, spreading evenly.
Top with the remaining bread.  Bake 40 minutes at 375.
Serve warm topped with vanilla cream sauce.
(If you want it to cut into nice squares you can chill
it and then cut it into squares, then microwave it
for 20-25 seconds per piece and top with sauce.)

Vanilla Cream Sauce
1 1/3 C. butter
5 T. flour
3 C. heavy cream
1/2 tsp. salt
2 tsp vanilla
2/3 C. sugar

Melt butter in medium saucepan and add flour.  Stir
10 minutes until it has a nutty aroma, do not brown.  Add
salt, cream and sugar until mix is thick.  Remove from heat
and stir in vanilla.  Serve warm over the pudding.




Sit down and have some, hope you melt over every bite.

I will be posting this with

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Icy Snowflake Cookies


I got this beautiful copper snowflake cookie cutter
from a friend and I just had to make and decorate
them.


The snow was coming down the day before
and it inspired me.

I chose to do white on white and white
with aqua.  These are almost too pretty
to eat.



For complete instructions click here.


Have fun making these beautiful cookies. 


I will be posting these cookies with





Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Romance Is In The Air - Valentine's For Couples


Hearts, hearts everywhere!


Why not get a head start on a Valentine's Day party for
couples? 
We thought we would gather before everyone got too busy.


Set the table all in red and white with hearts everywhere.


My new red flatware from Horchow will be perfect.
I had been wanting red flatware and these were on sale.



It is called San Remo.  The red was a little darker
red than I expected, but it blends well.


These cutwork Valentine's napkins are new this year too.
I found these at Home Goods/ TJ Maxx.
Sometimes I feel like I am a walking advertisement for
Home Goods, but I just love all of their tableware.



It is frosty and snowy outside and the red really warms
everything up.


I had to have these fun heart shaped salad plates when I
saw them.  I got 13 in case one breaks.


These wonderful glass votive candle holders
 are new this year from Tai Pan.  I read recently that there are
two Tai Pans in California too.
The early morning sun shining through them is beautiful.


Joni from Red Couch Recipes (my lovely sister) gave me
these ruffled chargers.  If you are a follower, you know that Joni
is the one that got me started blogging.  She is coming up on her
first year in February.  What a wonderful blog she has.


The ruby red glasses are so rich in color.


I just love the color red.  Did you know that it is more
expensive to make red in glassware?


The tabletop stays up all month.  It is a collection of
fun Valentine's objects.


I save my beautiful chocolate boxes that my hubby gives me
for Valentine's Day and use them as part of my
holiday decor.




This is from a box of V Chocolates, a local
chocolatier.


This one is just a beaded box that I found a couple
of years ago.


A red candle in a jeweled candle holder adds a little
sparkle.



I threw a few "diamonds" on the table too.  Don't they
just represent romance?


Little heart jewels surround this crackled glass votive.


Amore!


We even hang some beaded hearts from the
chandelier.


Enjoy the view from above.


I especially enjoy the early sunlight streaming through all
of the red glass.  Such a pretty sight.

XOXOXO
Hugs and kisses from my home to yours.

I hope this puts you in the mood for Valentine's Day.
Invite some friends over and share the fun.

Goblets - Costco
Plates and heart votives - Tai Pan
Chargers - gift
Flatware - Horchow
Napkins - Home Goods
Napkin rings - made from floral picks


I will be posting this with


Tuesday, January 25, 2011

The 12 Steps Chocoholic Program

Having been born in January, there is nothing
much to look forward to except maybe cold and
more cold (unless you run away), so imagine
my surprise when one day after my birthday, I
walked out to a snowy mail box ...
(I think it had to be about 12 steps!)



... and opening it, I found the best
birthmonth surprise -
yes - I am one of those who strongly believe in a
birthday, a birthweek and a birthmonth - especially
for a January birthday.  I love it when my friends
give me gifts way after my birthday and while
profusely apologizing I explain the birthmonth
philosophy to them.  They get a huge smile on their
face, and we both are happy.



Now there is a before and after 
(or boring to better)
 picture I would love to see more often!

Who wouldn't want to open their mailbox for
something like this.


My dear friend Pam has twin granddaughters who both have
complications and she has moved to be near her daughter and
help care for these darlings.  She and her husband fly back and
forth half way across the country to see each other while she
helps these tinies. 


Pam sent me these for my birthday.  She said she saw them and
thought of me.  Oh, I love you Pam!!!!

If you have read my profile, you know I love gourmet chocolates
and try to buy new varieties whenever I see them.  I had never
heard of these artisanal chocolates before.


Que magnifique!  These just took my breath away.  I am not
alone in my love for fine chocolates.  My husband was right
there by my side oohing and aahin!

I took my oldest son to New York after his freshman year at
college and we stopped in Godiva and bought a pound.  We
went right out of the store and sat on a bench and opened
them.  All the while he was grouching about never spending
that much money on candy.  Then - he tasted one and quickly
changed his mind - maybe fine chocolates were worth a little
extra!!!


These were just gorgeous.  My husband and I have a habit of
sharing each one so that neither of us misses a fabulous center.


Not only were they beautiful, but the flavors were so unique.
I can't stand a box of chocolates that all taste like hazelnuts.
Not that I don't love hazelnuts mind you, but I want more
variety.


This one looks like swirling snowflakes on a cold day.

You too can have your mailbox transformed
and filled with delight.
I found them on the web, just click here .


"We sculpt tiny pieces of chocolate perfection into miniature
works of art that look as exquisite as they taste."

I think that says it perfectly.


Not that I won't try every one, but I do love it when they
include a flavor guide. 

The fresh mango was AMAZING!


You probably never knew there really was PURPLE CHOCOLATE
out there did you?  Actually I came up with the name after Easter
last year when I made a large chocolate bunny and it bloomed
(meaning the cocoa butter rose to the surface and it wasn't
too pretty).  I coated it with purple lustre dust and thus the first
purple chocolate in my home was created.

Thanks Pam, they were divine.

The 12 steps chocoholic program....
Never be more than 12 steps from chocolate.
(Ok, my mailbox is probably more than 12 steps!)

Purple Chocolat Home
 will be focusing on chocolate
this next month in celebration of Valentine's Day.
Look forward to more decadent chocolate posts.

I will be sharing this (in spirit only as I don't share
chocolates all that well unless you are my hubby)
with


Monday, January 24, 2011

The Hogburger



The Salt Lake, The Magazine For Utah
 is a fun magazine
to buy because it often has restaurant reviews.

They recently featured "75 Best Burgers"
in the state.

The
Hogburger
caught my eye.
It is made at Brittons in Sandy, Utah and is described
as a 'hamburger between two grilled cheese sandwiches,
one with onions and one with tomatoes."



The picture made my mouth start to water and I
decided this was one hamburger we had to try making
at home.

We grill outside come rain or shine, winter or summer
so hamburgers are year round here. 


I started with fresh tomatoes that I salted and peppered, onions
that we caramelized,
and hamburger meat that I seasoned with olive oil, salt
and pepper.  We grilled the burgers on the BBQ and
then brought them in while we made the grilled cheese
sandwiches.


We buttered the outside of two pieces of good white bread
and topped each piece of bread with a slice of colby/jack
cheese, then tomatoes on one side and grilled onions on the
other side.  These were each topped with another piece
of buttered bread and grilled on the other side until the
cheese is melted.


Place the burger between two grilled cheese sandwiches, one
with tomatoe and one with onions.  You could also add a
couple slices of bacon (if you want your heart to really stop!)



I don't know why they named it the Hogburger, except that
maybe you feel like a HOG when you are eating it.

I thought it was absolutely fabulous.  I knew I should have
stopped at a half, but I have to admit that I
ATE THE WHOLE THING!
(HOG, OINK, OINK)
I would highly recommend trying this (but only
after you have already broken your New Year's
resolution to diet.)

I will be posting this with

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