Summer Cheese Appetizer Platter

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Summertime and the entertaining is easy.  No one wants to be stuck in the kitchen when guests arrive, especially on a nice summer day.  Having a platter of simple finger foods ready for guests to help themselves to, gives the host a chance to mingle with all the guests.  When choosing what to serve before a meal, balance your selection with the meal:  lighter fare, heavier pre-meal platter and vice versa.  Offer savory and sweet options. Continue reading

BLT Salad with Heirloom Tomatoes and Fresh Mozzarella

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When you serve guests a casually-thrown together salad from seasonal fresh ingredients and it’s still being raved about a year later, then maybe it’s time to try and recreate the salad and share the recipe!   This salad is a cross between a Caprese salad and a BLT sandwhich.  Sooooooo delicious!   The homemade croutons are a must.   Hope I got it exactly right for you Millie! Continue reading

Light-Up Flower Centerpiece

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imageWhen I saw the whimsical dragonfly string lights at Target recently($12.99), I knew I had to find a way to use them this summer.  I imagined them more in flight, hovering above some flowers than strung up.  I knew they would look best at eye level than high above. Continue reading

Blueberry Lemon Pie with Lemon Balm Crust

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When it comes to fruit pies, to thicken or not to thicken, that is the question.  I’m talking about the filling, of course!  I like a fruit pie that still tastes and looks like the fruit it was made of, not too gelatinous like the filling came from a can.  I came up with the perfect compromise:  cook down about a third of the fruit, add a small amount of cornstarch to thicken and fold in the rest of the fruit.  You’ll end up with a pie that still lets the fruit shine.  With blueberries in season and lemon balm invading my garden like a weed, it seemed  like the perfect pie to bake.  With ginger, lemon zest, nutmeg and cinnamon, this pie says summer in every bite.  Continue reading

Pretty in Pink Alfresco Lunch

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“In summer, the song sings itself.”  William Carlos Williams

“Lone and erect, beneath light’s primal flood,
A lily! and pure as any one of you.”
– Mallarme

The inspiration for this luncheon table was this stunning oriental lily, ‘Corvara’, which had just opened in my garden.imageI anticipated its arrival for weeks and  postponed a vacation just so I could be home to enjoy it while it bloomed.  That is how magnificent this flower really is!  This hot pink lily with a mesmerizing fragrance is often called the Royal Lily.  It is religiously symbolic with godliness.  And it’s no wonder, it is a perfect creation!  Did I mention its heavenly fragrance? Continue reading