19 Sunday Nov 2017
Posted just sayin'in
10 Friday Nov 2017
Posted belle maison, belle of the ballin
We were blown away at a recent dinner party given by an extremely sweet, creative, fun belle-friend! This party was so well-thought-out and executed, we just had to share some of the details!
As guests arrived, we were greeted with a tray of champagne cocktails with floating cranberries…setting the scene for the pre-holiday event.
Fun fact…in order to test the ripeness of a cranberry, it is bounced. If it bounces about 4 inches, it’s good to go!
But the libations didn’t stop there. Guests were free to pick their poison…
The focus of the event was Thanksgiving…our most favorite holiday! Prior to attending, we were given links to Thanksgiving trivia sites so that we could “study up”. Test your own knowledge here and here and here. At trivia time…it was game-on! Our hostess with the mostest had a belle-ringin “prize table”…
…with lottery tickets, candles, tequila (one of us came home with this!), sausages, a puzzle, and much, much more!!
While our hostess shifted gears from game referee to chef, guests had the chance to relax by the fire…
…which, by the way, was perfect as we FINALLY had an evening that felt like fall!! (80 degrees the day before made this all the more exciting!)
And now for the table and other belle-ringin’ decor…
And our hostess loves to downplay her talents…but this creation speaks for itself!
We are now duly inspired and ready for the weeks to come. Bring on the eggnog!!
24 Thursday Nov 2016
Posted healthy belle, just sayin'in
Happy Thanksgathering, dear belles! Here is a little guide from ForgivenessClub to help you relax and enjoy
15 Tuesday Nov 2016
Posted what's ringin' our bellein
birth order, champagne, cocktails, FoodNetwork, House Beautiful, Intermix, Jo Cooks, Jocelyn, kale salad, quinoa salad, Thanksgiving
Ringin’ belles this week…
This kale and quinoa salad…had it a couple of weeks ago…making again soon!
A cranberry-champagne cocktail for Thanksgiving celebrations (via FoodNetwork)
Nailing this birth order quiz (kinda…one of us who is supposed to be a “middle” is awfully close to being an “oldest”!)
Preparing for the Thanksgiving table…with a little help from House Beautiful
Feelin’ feathery with some help from Jocelyn at Intermix
29 Thursday Oct 2015
Posted belle maison, belle of the ballin
The season of gourds is upon us, and it seems everyone is getting more and more creative with that good ole pumpkin. We happily hopped on the day train and came up with this:
You might ask how we came up with something so ingenious. Well, the results were pretty good…and all ours…but we can’t take credit for the idea. We were cruising for some fall decorating ideas and stumbled across a few things on Pinterest that inspired us….
And then we happened upon these Chinoiserie Pumpkins !! Oh. My. Gawd. You could have knocked us over with a feather!!
Just take a gander at this from Enchanted Home :
And as we dug a little deeper, we came upon these from The Relished Roost
A nice bonus…we realized these incredible artists had these pretties available for purchase…and, with a little heads up, would even customize to a degree. So, of course, we tried to purchase a few for our fall table (bookshelves for the rest of the year!!). Alas…they were sold out.
Well, these belles are no quitters! We decided this was the perfect time for us to try and get a little crafty ourselves. So this is what we made with some acrylic paint, a few faux pumpkins, and some paint pens. Don’t judge too harshly…but we do think they turned out alright for our first go at it….
Above pic is pencil sketching our design …
We decided to do a Paris Porcelain effect with a gold and white look ….
And then we put them on display…
So belles, Cinderella those pumpkins…they deserve to be the belles of the ball!!!
(And they don’t have a midnight curfew!)
27 Thursday Nov 2014
Posted what's ringin' our bellein
We belles try to be constantly grateful for all of our “blessins”…but days can get so crazy-busy, we might overlook one or two. So…we thought we would remind ourselves (and you) on this day of thanks to take a break every day to be grateful. Years ago, Oprah started writing down five things that she was grateful for at the end of every day. They were often simple little things like someone holding a door for her…but knowing that she needed to collect 5 things by the end of the day made her really think about it! A very worthwhile activity, don’t ya think?
Another great/grateful idea we ran across…these cards from Uncommon Goods called A Year of Gratitude
They come in a set of 52…one for every week of the year. The idea? Take time once a week to write a note to someone expressing your gratitude. It just might become contagious!!
Happy Thanksgiving, y’all!
20 Thursday Nov 2014
autumn, cheesecake, Dessert, fall, Fine Cooking, ginger snap crust, Once Upon a Chef, pumpkin, Thanksgiving
With Thanksgiving around the corner, we thought this might be the perfect time to share an old favorite of ours…a dessert that will have your guests giving thanks to the cheesecake fairy…and you!
This is the ultimate fall version of cheesecake, adapted over the years from two different recipes…one from Once Upon a Chef, and one from Fine Cooking. So gather your supplies and make your plan. You will definitely want this on your menu!
Pumpkin Cheesecake with Gingersnap Crust
For the crust, you will need…
– about 40 Gingersnap wafers (to make 2 cups crumbs)
– 1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
– 5 T unsalted butter, melted
Place cookies and sugar in food processor and pulse away til it looks about like this (uniform crumbs). Transfer to a bowl and add melted butter. Combine thoroughly (use your hands…best way to go about this).
Press the mixture into the bottom (and slightly up the sides) of a greased 9-inch springform pan. Chill for 5 minutes, then bake for 10 minutes at 325 degrees. Let cool.
Now for the filling…you will need:
– 1 can pumpkin (15 oz)
– 1 1/3 cups sugar
– 1 t cinnamon
– 1/2 t ground ginger
– 1/4 t ground nutmeg
– 1/4 t ground cloves
– 1/2 t salt
– 1 cup heavy cream
– 24 oz cream cheese, room temperature
– 5 large eggs, room temperature
In a small, heavy saucepan, combine pumpkin sugar, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, cloves and salt…
Bring to a sputter over medium heat, stirring constantly. Reduce heat to med-low and stir for about 5 minutes until thickened.
Pour into food processor fitted with metal blade, leaving feed tube open…
Process for 1 minute.
With the motor running, stream in the cold cream.
Add cream cheese (cut into chunks) and process for 30 seconds (stopping to scrape down sides if needed)
Add eggs and process for 5 seconds until incorporated (do not overmix!)
In a tea kettle, bring about 4 quarts water to a simmer for a water bath.
Place springform pan onto 2 sheets of heavy-duty aluminum foil
Pull foil up sides so that water cannot seep into cake in water bath
Place springform pan into a large roasting pan.
Pour batter into the crust.
Pour boiling water into roasting pan to come halfway up sides of springform
Bake until set, about 1 1/2 hours (if it jiggles, it’s not ready yet!)
Carefully remove roasting pan from oven and set on wire rack.
Carefully loosen cake from sides of pan using a paring knife.
Allow to cool for about 45 minutes.
Remove springform from water bath. Discard foil.
Allow to continue to cool on wire rack for about 3 hours.
Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 4 hours.
Sadie doesn’t really care about formality or presentation…she just wants a taste now!
However…for human purposes, we tend to make it a bit more presentable. Remove outer ring of the springform, then slide a thin metal spatula between crust and pan bottom to loosen and slide into a serving platter. (Or…leave the cake on the pan bottom and serve as is).
Consider serving with a dollop of sweetened whipped cream or a yummy caramel sauce…you can’t go wrong.
Hope your guests (and furry babies) can control themselves!!!