Last month, I shared with you my go-to crumble recipe that makes prepping dessert for a dinner party a breeze. Another of my go-to desserts for summer is the Pavlova! I am amazed by how this simple, yet delicious, dessert can be such a show stopper. When it comes to baking, I definitely live by Leonardo da Vinci’s words: “Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.”
The trick is to select good ingredients, let them shine and do the work for you! In this case, the star of these adorable mini pavlovas is Tillamook Cinnamon Horchata ice cream (c/o Tillamook). This extra creamy ice cream has a subtle hint of cinnamon, similar to simple vanilla bean ice cream, but even better! It’s sweetness contrasts the acidity of the roasted pineapples and complements the crunchy meringues perfectly.
Baking the meringue might be the most time consuming step of this recipe because they need to dry slowly in the oven so that they’re crispy and not chewy. But since they can keep in an airtight container for up to a week, you can definitely bake them ahead of time and assemble everything right before serving. In a rush? Feel free to skip the roasting step and top your mini pavlovas with fresh pineapples or any other summer fruits or berries.
Seriously, there’s nothing like going to to Chinatown for some refreshing bubble tea, especially on a hot day. I don’t know if it’s the endless amount of strange flavors or the squish of tapioca pearl boba sucked through an oversized straw, but on a steamy summer day, it’s the best. That’s why I was so excited to combine my passion for popsicles and bubble tea into one delicious summer treat just in time for Popsicle Week!
This Watermelon Boba Pop is utterly refreshing, with juicy bites of sweet frozen watermelon juice and icy boba to chew on and a tart kiwi surprise at the end. Definitely one to try for those sweltering afternoons.
When it comes to cocktails, you have your base liquors that are like your basics in your closet (think jeans, white tees, flats). Then there are specific liquors and liqueurs that you can mix in that can bring your outfit — I mean cocktail — to the next level and add oomph! But sometimes, it can be a little impractical because, really, who wants to buy an expensive bottle of booze they use once a year?
I have a cocktail today with just such a sprit that you will want to grab, but will quickly be added to the rotation in your home bar! Have you ever heard of Pimms? Even the most novice of cocktail sippers have probably come across the Pimms Cup.
If images of garden parties, polo matches, and high tea come to mind when you hear Pimms, you wouldn’t be mistaken! This drink is practically the national drink of Summer in England. No, really… they drink it like water during the warmer months!
Despite the refreshing qualities of this drink, how often are you to crack open the bottle of Pimms to make these drinks? Rather then pass up this delicious spirit, I have an alternative concoction for when you can’t handle one more Pimm’s Cup — meet the Pimm and Proper. And yes, pun is fully intended.
The funny thing about blogging is that it can be a solid month before I get to share projects… and so today I am beyond thrilled to share a project with Ford called Switch It Up! Ford challenged me to step out of my comfort zone and try my hand at a super-complex recipe, shrimp biryani. In fact, this entire project is a series where different experts give each other challenges! Thankfully, I had the help and guidance of Merrill Stubbs from one of my favorite sites, Food52. She gave me loads of pointers and even came back to ‘grade’ how I did — be sure to check out the video to see more!
Plus, here are a few snaps from behind the scenes… are you hungry yet??
I’ve never even considered making Indian food, much less a recipe with so many special ingredients. Seriously, guys, I have never bought cardamom in my life. I learned a lot, all while not burning myself too badly — basically, a minor feat in my book.
The sun is shining, sandals are out and real berries are back on shelves. Not the tasteless ones we see all year long, but instead the real, fragrant berries that seem to come right from our backyards (I mean the one we wish we had!). Today, for my first post on Jojotastic, I want to share one of my favorite summertime recipes, anise and blackberry skillet crumble.
Blackberries have an interesting twist to them since A. they are black (can’t think of another fruit with such a Goth color), B. their taste is pretty mild compared to more acidic berries, and C. they are rumored to keep your skin young and glowy! For these reasons, blackberries are THE ingredient of choice to indulge in all summer long! In this recipe, the subtle fruity flavor of the blackberry pairs very well with the sweet-n-spicy kick of the anise. I could imagine how good this combination must be in a cocktail form (mental note taken).
This crunchy crumble served with anise infused whipped cream will be a huge hit at your next dinner party. My testers and I still rave about it and it probably will become one of my staple for all of my summertime entertaining. This recipe is easy to prepare since it doesn’t require fancy equipment (just your hands). To add to the cuteness effect, I baked and served mine in this adorable octagonal cast iron skillet (c/o Finex).
When the weather heats up we tend to retire our scotch-laden drinks and spirit-driven libations for those with seasonal fruits, juices, and more neutral spirits (like tequila and vodka). Margaritas come to mind immediately when hosting summertime get-togethers. That being said… you should always have a few good cocktail recipes in your repertoire to rotate through for entertaining — one can only have so many margs. Meet the Grapefruit Fennel Fizz!
Don’t get me wrong I LOVE a good margarita (sans sour mix, of course), but sometimes you want something a little… different. Today’s Grapefruit Fennel Fizz will please margarita and citrus lovers alike. Fennel is an herb often reserved for roasting, soups, and citrus salads, but don’t dismiss it when it comes to garnishing your cocktails!
Believe it or not, I often take inspiration for cocktail creations and combinations from food. When I find two flavors in a dish that strike a cord with me, I will play around with them in my cocktail laboratory — *ahem* my kitchen. Often, I find that what I loved about that dish can be recreated in sipping form.
We are just about half way through 2015, can you believe that? So far this year I got married (what?!) so I’m excited to see what else this year has in store! For surviving making it this long, we deserve a drink! I have a great onetoday that’s peeerfect for Spring. It contains lingering flavors of Winter along with the fruity notes that dominate Summer time libations. Meet the Blood Orange & Sand!
It is a twist on the delicious and classic Blood & Sand. I don’t mean Lemon Drop or Cosmo kind of classic (let’s not get into that right now), but created-over-a-century-ago kind of a classic. This drink has staying power and for good reason.
This cocktail is a great intro to drinking Scotch, if throwing an ice cube in a glass and pouring a finger or two of smokey whiskey seems a little daunting your first go-round. It also is a tasty merger of fruity yet beautifully smokey flavors for seasoned Scotch drinkers, ahem, like Joanna and me. Adding in a splash of blood orange soda to the traditional cocktail gives it some added citrus flavor and bubbles. Bubbles are always fun (right?!).
3/4 oz sweet vermouth (Dolin is a favorite of ours)
3/4 oz blood orange juice (substitute orange juice if blood orange is not available)
1/2 oz blood orange soda
2 all natural maraschino cherries (such as Luxardo)
Combine all ingredients in a cocktail shaker (we love this shaker and this one) except for blood orange soda. Shake with ice. Strain into 6 oz cocktail glass and top with blood orange soda. Garnish with maraschino cherries and orange peel.
It calls for one component that may be unfamiliar to some: Cherry Heering. Don’t even think about replacing it with another cherry brandy, kirsch, or liqueur! I mean, you could, and it may be just as good, but you would have a whole other drink on your hands. Instead, invest in a bottle of Cherry Heering — a little goes along way.
This staple liqueur is made with cherries and spices that give it it’s unique flavor profile that works here to balance the smokey notes from the Scotch. It is actually a very usefully bottle to have on hand for your home bar. Many traditional cocktails can be made with it and it makes for great experimenting to create new concoctions!
The Blood Orange & Sand is a pretty sexy drink that would be great for a dinner for two at home to impress your date or partner (they don’t have to know how simple it is!). Top with more orange juice and — et voilà — you have a fun and pretty drink thats suitable for a brunch with your friends or fam!
p.s. I also shared another perfect springtime cocktail over on Sugar & Cloth this week!
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