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    Food & Drink

    Rosemary Pear Mocktail + Party Recipe Printable

    The days of ordering cocktails are so close I can almost taste them! I really love mixed drinks…I love the originality of them, I love garnishing them, making them look beautiful, and I just love holding them. They add such an air of elegance. I imagine Jay Gatsby had amazing craft cocktails at his parties, with hand cut ice cubes you could see through and no one was asking anyone if they wanted “white or red?”. This is why, for me, being able to have an occasional glass of wine over the course of 9 months doesn’t always cut it. Yes, it goes marvelously with a cheese plate and there’s certainly a place in my heart for that but it just LOOKS kind of boring, especially at a party. While I’m not cutting my own perfectly clear ice cubes over here I did find a solution! This Pear Rosemary mocktail fits the bill wonderfully. It’s sweet enough but the ginger beer allows for a spice that kind of mimics the kick of liquor – it’s not overwhelmingly too sweet and most importantly – it’s garnishable!

    This recipe is also a great baby shower beverage option. I’ve used it multiple times and will add a bottle of champagne next to the mix just in case our not pregnant friends want to really get wild and add a bit on top. The easiest way to execute it for a party is mix the simple syrup, lemon juice and pear juice as the mixer, keep the ginger beer on the side and let people make their own. I’ll also add a plate of sugar and a small bowl of lemon juice to the side so people can sugar the rim.

    It’s great because it adds a fun activity to the party that doesn’t feel cheesy or forced.

    To make things extra festive I have a downloadable sign below that you can print out and add next to the set up so people know what to do. There are two versions – one with the option of a wine floater and one that
    keeps it simple (no wine option).

    For a single drink:

    sugar for the rim

    lemon wedges to rugar rim

    2 Tbs lemon juice

    4 Tbs pear juice

    1 Tbs Rosemary Simple Syrup

    6 Tbs ginger beer

    Rosemary and Pear slices to garnish

    To make the rosemary simple syrup: put equal parts sugar and water in a pot with a few sprigs of rosemary on medium heat. Stir occasionally and allow the sugar to melt. Once the sugar has melted, turn off heat and let the rosemary infuse until syrup has cooled.

    For a party you can easily multiply it out but heres a starting point

    To make the mixer for approx 40 beverages (15-20 people):

    5 cups lemon juice

    10 cups pear juice

    2.5 cups rosemary simple syrup

    ** generally I will start with the lemon juice, add about 8 cups of pear juice and taste it from there. depending on what brands you buy and personal taste, the ratio may be different**

    **for big batches like this I usually buy the lemon juice rather than squeezing dozens of lemons but that’s up to you!”

    Party Mocktail Station Set Up:

    Recipe print out

    Mixer in a pitcher

    Bottles of ginger beer (I usually assume 3-4 drinks can be made per bottle if you are using cocktail glasses or the small clear plastic disposable cups for a party)

    Bowl of lemon juice for the rim

    ** depending on the size of the party you could also leave lemon wedges to use instead of dipping the rim in lemon juice**

    Small plate with sugar for the rim

    Ice bucket

    Extra rosemary and pear slices for garnishing

    And thats about it! Obviously it’s also a huge crowd pleaser among the kids…Margot was so excited about it while I was taking photos I had to give her a taste…for about 2 seconds…until she almost dropped my favorite cocktail glass that isn’t made anymore…But let me tell you, she LOVED it.

     

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    Food & Drink

    Drink for Good: One Hope Wine (plus dinner party menu)

    We have been so excited about our backyard and hosting friends that for a few weeks there it was a non-stop party at the Hollar home! No complaints about that but we finally took a minute to slow down and have a smaller dinner party with just a few, a menu inspired by Ina Garten (you know that’s always a good sign) and the yummiest wine from One Hope.

    Side Note: Flower arrangement cameo apperance is from the floral arranging  tutorial with Hello Honey. 

    First off, have you guys heard of One Hope wine?! It’s is such a great business! A percentage of every bottle purchased goes to various non-profit organizations. Printed on the back of each bottle it says where exactly the proceeds are going – how cool is that?! They partner with organizations to help end childhood hunger, provide life saving vaccines, provide people with clean drinking water, support cancer medication development, aid veterans in finding a renewed sense of purpose,  and the list goes on and on!

    Admittedly, I was skeptical at first that the wine would be any good- don’t get me wrong, I certainly enjoy a nice two-buck chuck now and again but I have also learned to appreciate delicious wines as well and I can tell the difference! Starting at the first sip we were all blown away at how great this wine is! I mean really! Bottle after bottle, red after white, it never let us down. Everyone kept saying how impressed they were with it! You really need to give it a try! If you are already buying wine – might as well enjoy it while helping others right? It’s a win/win for everyone. They also have these suuuuper cute glitter bottles that I can’t wait to get my hands on!

    OK, have I won you over yet? I just really want everyone to try this wine because I know you’ll keep going back for more and so much good can come from it!

    You can learn more about it and purchase it here, through conultant Melissa Ferber, who generously provided all of the wine for our party 🙂

    (In case I need to clarify, I think this is a good time to point out that I only had a few sips of each wine, it probably equated to a glass or so in total. Don’t worry – I didn’t forget that I am pregnant 🙂 )

    Wine is great on it’s own but as we all know – it’s even better with food. I know, dinner parties can be A LOT of work but they are also A LOT of fun! So, to make things a bit easier I broke down all of the things I made and even how to prep for the party to make its easy-peasy. All of the recipes are inspired by or taken directly from Ina Garten, which means they will be your new favorites. Links to the recipes are below along with some of my own tips and a schedule that allows you to do almost everything before anyone even arrives allowing you to fully enjoy your party and your friends!

     Camembert & Prosciutto Tartines.  

    **alteration: I drizzled some honey on top because I figured, why not, and oooooh man – it was SO good! Do that.

    **tip: make sure all of the prosciutto gets a bit crispy – some of mine didn’t get roasted all the way and the crispy ones were definitely better!

    **alteration: Camembert is like brie but it is a bit stronger, if you would prefer a lighter taste to the cheese you could substitute with brie.

    Filet of Beef with Béarnaise Mayonnaise 

    OK so for this one, I didn’t want to make the mayo myself  because of the raw eggs and being pregnant. So, if that is a concern for you here’s what I did and it came out great!

    Sauté the tarragon, shallots, & wine (I use One Hope 🙂 ) as she says to do. I left the vinegar out because store bought mayonnaise already has vinegar in it. Then combine sautéed mixture with tablespoon of mustard and 1 cup of store bought mayo in a food processor. Voila!

    **alteration: A beef tenderloin isn’t really an inexpensive piece of meat but it is DELICIOUS and is the consistency of butter. It’s really great for a special occasion. But you could also make the same bearnaise mayonnaise with your favorite cut of steak to make it more of an everyday meal.

    Parmesan Chive Smashed Potatoes 

    Butter Lettuce with Mustard Vinaigrette (below)

      Mustard Vinaigrette Recipe (Hollar Family Recipe):
    2tsp salt
    tsp pepper
    3tbs Dijon mustard
    1c apple cider vinegar
    1tbs honey
    1c olive oil
    1c vegetable oil (or canola)

    In dressing shaker, using a blender or hand mixer, mix first 5 ingredients.
    Add olive oil and Vegetable oil and mix again.

    Chocolate Creme Brûlée 

     

    Day before:

    • Make mayonnaise cover & refrigerate (can be done 2 days in advance)
    • Make creme brûlée custard, cook, let cool, cover, & refrigerate.
    • Prep/wash lettuce, dry, cover & refrigerate.
    • Make dressing and refrigerate. (can be done 5 days in advance)

    Day of:

    • Afternoon:
      • Boil potatoes & smash on baking sheet. Cover & set aside until time to cook.
      • Prep chives & parmesan
    • About an hour before guests arrive prepare the tartines and stick in the oven a few minutes before they arrive.
    • About an hour and a half-ish before you want to eat (probably 30 minutes before guests will be arriving) butter meat and stick in the oven.
      • If you have two ovens this works. If you don’t have 2 you can just put roast in immediately after the tartines come out and eat a little later.
      • Another option would be to put the meat on the grill rather than in the oven; this is actually what we did because Julian really wanted to cook it in his Big Green Egg.
      • You can also do what Ina recommends to do and cook roast up to 2 days in advance (store in fridge) and serve at room temp with mayonnaise – she says it’s delicious.
    • When meat has about 20 minutes left stick potatoes in the oven. (If cooking meat in advance just do this 30min before you want to eat)
    • After dinner caramelize sugar on creme brûlées.

    **Notice that all you are actually doing while the guests are there is sticking potatoes in the oven and crystallizing sugar for the creme brûlées! That gives you the ability to actually enjoy your guests!

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    Food & Drink

    Recipe: Apricot French Tart

    My parents in law were here last week which means I basically got a nice little stay-cation. They entertain Margot, make our food and even did my laundry..If you follow me on instagram you may have noticed that Julian and his dad even built Margot the sweetest playlet in outback yard, which I am still all heart-eyed over.

    While they were here Julian’s mom made us a tummy apricot tart. I was SO easy and she just whipped it up like it was nothing so I wanted to share it with you guys!

    Marilyne (Julian’s mom) was born & raised in France, so, she knows pastries. They grew up together, they are best friends and much to everyones delight, they often show up at parties together. Much to MY delight she has informed me in the past that, really, making a pastry crust isn’t worth all of the hassle on a regular basis and the frozen ones are actually pretty great. YES! Free pass to make things easy! We Americans love that. I have also come to learn that over seas they actually have better flour and butter (etc..) which is why their pastries are soooo melt-in-your-mouth-flaky like little pieces of heaven. SO, if you haven’t been and you get the chance – go to France and eat your weight in pastries. Until then – you can use this super easy recipe to tide you over.

    NOTE: Your tart is only going to be as sweet as your fruit is ripe. So be sure to use nice ripe apricots.

    14-16 ripe apricots

    1 pack of 2 frozen pastry crusts thawed to room temp

    3 eggs

    2 tsp vanilla

    1/2 cup granulated sugar (in two 1/4 cup portions)

    5 oz. Creme fraiche

    **we got it at Trader Joes, I think whole foods has it as well.**

    Butter to grease pan

     1) Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

    2) Grease tart pan with butter

    3)Unroll pastry crust and lay into tart pan with removable bottom, we needed to use both crusts to fit the pan (notice the seam) Just make sure you mend that seam together well.

    4)Using a fork jab some holes in the crust to keep it from bubbling up. (see photo above)

    5)Slice apricots in half and remove the pit

    6)Arrange the apricots cut side down in a circular fashion in the tart pan.

    7) In a medium bowl mix using a fork the 3 eggs, vanilla 1/4 cup sugar and the creme fraiche.

    8) Pour the mixture over the apricots and into the pan until it is just under the top – don’t over fill. 

    9) Bake in 400 degree oven for 10 minutes.

    10) Reduce heat to 350 degrees and sprinkle remaining 1/4 cup sugar on top – cook for 15 more minutes until browned and set.

    11)Let cool for 10-15 min and remove from tart pan ( OK if you need to leave bottom portion on) and allow to cool completely.

    Serve at room temperature with any toppings you like!

    We had some extra ingredients so we made a baby apricot tart and a little blueberry tart as well just because they are cute.

    ENJOY!