6 Super Mardi Gras Recipes

Mardi Gras is next week on February 4th. Here are of 6 super Mardi Gras recipes starting with my Healthy Hurricane recipe. Enjoy for Fat Tuesday or for any other spring get-together.

The Original Hurricane from The Kitchn

Mardi Gras Munchies via Full Circle Foodie

French Quarter Beignets via Pau

Muffulettas via My Recipes

Mardi Gras King Cake via Taste of Home

 

Peppermint Milkshakes: Only 3 Ingredients

I first made this recipe for Peppermint Milkshakes on my blog in December of 2008 when I literally threw three ingredients together in a blender for my kids instead of taking them to get peppermint ice cream. Since then, I have been making these religiously for parties and for my 3 kids. It has been one of the most heavenly requested recipes from my children’s friends who have come to my house and tried them. Whenever I’m invited to a holiday party, I typically get asked to make these. This past sunday night, I made them for 28 people, and it was beyond an absolute hit. So many requested me to post the infamous recipe one more time so they can make them for their family Christmas events. Here it is…Enjoy!

Beetroot, Goat Cheese Hazelnut Tart

Beets are so incredibly healthy, and one of my favorite root vegetables. Just 3 baby beets equals one serving of your 5 vegetables and fruits you should have a day. They are also so versatile in cooking, and I love them in this Beetroot Goat Cheese and Hazelnut Tart. This recipe is very simple to prepare, and it makes a show-stopping appetizer or side dish. It’s perfect for holiday season entertaining. Check out LoveBeets which are ready-to-eat, cooked beets. You can find them in your local grocery such as Whole Foods Market. They make life so much easier, and they taste so fresh.

Here are just a few of their powerful health benefits.

1. Beets are one of the richest sources of folic acid essential for normal tissue growth.

2. Research has showed that beets can help lower blood pressure and blood sugar.

3. Beets have been said to lessen chances of skin and lung cancer.

4. The high iron content in beets helps fight fatigue and anemia.

5. Beets contain high amounts of Boron which is related to production of human sex hormones, thus increasing sex drive. 

In Search of the Perfect Pumpkin Pie Recipe

This weekend I have been in search of a great Pumpkin Pie recipe to make for Thanksgiving. You see, I’m getting off easy this year (yea!). I’ve hosted Thanksgiving at my house the past several years, but my sister and I swapped holidays this year (her request). I still have to make several things to bring to our family event of over 20 people. Since she assigned me the Pumpkin Pie, I have been searching for something new and different. The recipe (above) is a Pecan Streusel Topping from my friend Marge at A Sweet and Savory Sweet Life. It looks so fabulous, and it was one of the first ones I came across. Here are some others, including a “lightened up recipe from Cooking Light as well as vegan version. Enjoy!

Cheesecake Pumpkin Pecan Pie by Parsley Sage, Desserts and Line Drives

Pumpkin Pie Pops from Munchkin Munchies

 Pumpkin Pie Bites from Bakerella

 Vegan Pumpkin Pie from Vegetarian Times

Spiced Pumpkin Chiffon Pie from Cooking Light

,

Thanksgiving & Christmas Breakfast Recipes: My Favorite Coffee Cakes

One of my favorite things for breakfast is a truly awesome coffee cake. I crave it this time of the year, especially as the weather cools. My recipe for Apricot Almond Coffee Cake (above) was on my blog last year, and it’s so delicate and flavorful (I love the added touch of using Greek Yogurt). I have been eyeing some other recipes to try this season to serve on Thanksgiving and Christmas morning. I hope you’ll enjoy some of these recipes from some of my favorite sites that I look forward to reading on a daily basis.

Pumpkin Coffee Cake from How Sweet It is

Chocolate Chip Coffee Cake from Two Peas & Their Pod

 Corner Bakery Cinnamon Creme Coffee Cake from Barbara Bakes

Blueberry Lemon Coffee Cake from Cooking Light

Cinna-Bun Coffee Cake in a Jar from Picky Palate

 

Fashion Friday: Winter Essentials

I can’t believe that Thanksgiving is approaching so quickly. It seems like only yesterday that I was putting all of my scarves, boots, and other winter accessories in the back of my closet. If you are at a lost of what kind of accessories are on trend this year, then have no fear, because I am here to help! I personally love winter accessories. They can instantly change any outfit you are wearing. Just have some fun with bundling up…believe me, it is best to have fun when it is unbearable outside.

It is definitely key to keep your hands warm. I just love these gloves from J.Crew. They are simply chic with the half leather, half faux leopard print. Be sure to snag these gloves for $175.

I just have to admit it, I love scarves…I have a drawer full of them. The “pull through fur scarf” is something that is totally different than what I already have. This bright blue pull through by Adrienne Landau is so perfect. It not only adds a pop of color to any coat, but it will keep you nice and warm-which is so important. This scarf is available at Intermix for $295.

I love a beret. It is just that simple. This beret from Bebe is totally adorable. I love the snow white color (it will look fabulous with every hair color), and the bow adds a fun, feminine touch. Look amazing at this amazing price–$39.

My mom always told me that if your ears are warm, then your whole body will be warm too. I totally agree with that statement. Plus, it gives you a good reason to go out shopping and get yourself a great pair of adorable earmuffs. I have a pair very similar to these from Asos. They are faux fur, but they are equally as warm. They are only $21.56 online.

Last, you have to have a great pair of warm boots. They also have to look cute too. I love this pair by Ugg. Now, I am not a fan of the past styles designed by Ugg, but today, they have definitely stepped up when it comes to being fashion forward. Lace-up boots are totally on trend right now, and with the shearling on the inside, that is just a winning combination. The boots are available at Nordstrom for $249.49.

This post was crafted by Meredith from Inspector Snew

Halloween Candy 100 Calories or Less

Happy Halloween everyone! Halloween is such a fun holiday whether you have kids or not. One thing I try not to do, but always seem to, is to indulge in the candy. It’s only once a year, right?  This year, I thought I would take a different approach. I didn’t purchase my Halloween candy until the very last minute so it wouldn’t be sitting around for my kids or me to be tempted. Also, I did a little research to find out which types of candy have 100 calories or less. While doing research, I found such cute candy merchandise such as this adorable M & M’s Dispenser.

100 Calorie or Less Halloween Candy:

Miniature Reese’s cup 40 calories

Fun size bar Snickers bar 63 calories

3 strawberry Twizzler twists: 100 calories

Fun size Milky Way Bar 80 calories

Fun size 3 Musketeers 63 calories

Fun size Kit Kat Bar 70 calories

Fun size pack Reese’s pieces 67 calories

Fun size pack Starbursts 40 calories

Fun size Almond Joy 80 calories

Fun size Hershey Bar 77 calories

Fun Size Tootsie Roll 50 calories

Small packet plain M’M’s 73 calories

Small packet peanut M’M’s 90 calories

Halloween Cupcakes

Every Halloween my daughter, Leigh, loves to have friends over to decorate cupcakes for Halloween. I purchase an array of baking supplies, and she and her friends scan the internet for inspiration. They always ask me what blogs are some of my favorites so I do have some influence with some of their selections. Here’s what we thought were some of the best Halloween Cupcakes we have come across lately. To start, our jaws dropped when we saw these Black Chocolate Widow Rum Cupcakes from “6 Bittersweets”. Hope you’ll enjoy some of our ultimate favorites.

Pumpkin Buttercream Cupcakes with Halloween Toppers from “I am Baker”

Spooky Spider Cupcakes from “Tidy Mom” 

Halloween Cupcakes from “Kirbie’s Cravings”

Apple Praline Bundt Cake

When I saw the cover of Southern Living Magazine last month, I knew this very special Apple Bundt Cake with Praline Frosting had to be on my dessert table for the Jewish holiday, Rosh Hashanah. Thanks to my sister, Julie and her friend, Toby, my wish came true. This recipe rocks! What else can I really say? The entire issue of the magazine really does. So many recipes, so little time….I hope if you’re looking for a sinfully gorgeous Apple Cake to make, you’ll choose this one with Southern Flair (my kids loved the Praline Frosting). Happy New Year to those celebrating (and those who aren’t :)).

Fourth of July Buttermilk Cupcakes

Happy Fourth of July. I hope everyone has a relaxing and safe holiday. My kids and I had so much fun making these Buttermilk Cupcakes last week. The cupcake recipe comes from Southern Living magazine from several years ago. It’s so easy and one of my favorites. Frost with homemade cream cheese icing or store-bought, and top with sprinkles or these adorable Fourth of July marshmallows by Jet Puffed.