DomestiKatedLife

A Boston-Based Lifestyle Blog

Category Archives: Entertaining

Veggie Dip Bowls with Alouette.

They say a party with out cake is just a meeting. Well, I say a party without appetizers fits the same criteria. Even if I’m just having a few people over for casual drinks, I almost always make two things: a cheese plate and a small crudité platter. I always feel like I’m being super healthy when I make a veggie and dip tray, but let’s be honest — vegetables are only there as vehicles to get the most amount of dip possible in my mouth — real talk people! Alouette Cheese sent me some of their new Le Bon Dips to try and I attempted a little stylists’ trick to make my crudité look extra appealing: I made a dip bowl out of veggies!

You can try this trick at home, it’s very simple. Start with a small head of raddichio, purple cabbage, or savoy cabbage (or get creative with other vegetables! Slice a small sliver off the bottom of the head of cabbage so that it can sit flat without rolling. Then slice the top inch or so off the top of the head to form the bowl shape. Next you have to hollow it out, using a sharp knife at an angle, slice what should be a cone-shaped hole out of the center of the head, leaving about half an inch of a bowl border around the edges. Use a smaller paring knife to cut away pieces from the inside and keep removing the insides until you have a bowl that works for your plate. Then fill that veggie bowl up with your favorite dip! I tried the Alouette Le Bon Dip in fire roasted vegetable and basil, zucchini, parmesan — try adding a few fresh herbs to the top of the dip before you serve it for a special touch!



Please note: This post was sponsored by Alouette Cheese, all opinions, ideas, recipes and photography are my own.

Perfect Picnic Ingredients.

Last summer, my bestie and I had a girls night and picnicked while watching an outdoor movie in the park. We both kicked ourselves for waiting until the end of the summer to finally do it, and I made a promise to myself that this summer I’d do it much more often. We live in a small apartment, so it’s not convenient to store big coolers or picnic baskets — I usually just grab a small tote and fill it up with a few essential picnic ingredients: 1) A cozy blanket — I love the Gunn & Swain Mexican blankets. 2) A few festive drinks — IZZE sparkling juices are tasty, and all you have to do is pop them open, no need to cart around glassware (but striped straws are encouraged!). 3) Snacks! I hate having to bring a knife and cutting board for a cheese plate – the less we have to carry, the better. To solve for this I took a mason jar and layered ingredients to make individual cheese plate ‘kits’ — this one has mixed nuts, dried apricots, sharp cheddar, salami and crackers. 4) Bring some cloth napkins, they’re eco-friendly, and since they’re a bit heavier than a paper napkin they won’t fly away. Throw it all in a fun tote, grab your sunnies and girlfriends, and you’re ready for a day in the park! izze picnic ideas 3izze picnicizze picnic ideas 2
 

Please Note: This post was sponsored by Izze; all images, ideas and content are my own. 

Derby Day DIY.

If I was queen of anything, I think I’d probably be the queen of the last-minute DIY. I wish I was one of those bloggers that plans her awesome ideas months in advance so I could just hit publish a week before an event, but my best inspiration always seems to pop up the day before a holiday! Case and point: my derby day DIY epiphany popped into my head earlier this weekend. The good news is that this DIY concept can be used in dozens of different ways for many holidays to come, using gold clay and wooden skewers to make some horseshoe drink stirrers.
The instructions are simple: roll out modeling clay to about 1/4″ thickness and use an exacto-knife to cut out your shape — in this case, a simple horseshoe. Next, use a small wooden toothpick or dowel to add details before popping the pieces in a 275 degree oven for 15 minutes. Once the pieces have cooked, hardened, and cooled, use a tiny drop of hot glue to affix to a wooden skewer. Let the glue set and you’re ready to pop them into a mint julep or cocktail of your choice!

DIY Party Drinkware.

Why is it that of all of the party wares you can buy, that drinkware is always the most plain and boring? I mean, what’s more fun than DRINKS people? I have found it quite tough to find fun, festive options for disposable glasses, so I decided to come up with a way to make them more festive on my own — this is such a simple idea that I’m kind of kicking myself for not coming up with it earlier. I purchased simple clear plastic cups from the party store and then used printable colored labels from Paper Source to write out a fun phrase (since these were for a morning event, I wrote “good mornin’ sunshine” on the stickers). After printing them out at home, I simply adhered the stickers to the cups before serving a tasty rosemary lemonade in them. I’m positive I’ll be replicating this idea for many parties in my future!


Bunny Straws.

I think we all deserve a little extra perk of Spring-y goodness in our Easter celebrations this weekend after the winter that we’ve had, right? So I thought up a fun party detail: bunny straws! The assembly is simple: cut out a small white outline of a bunny head; using a glue stick add on small nose and pinks of the ears. Finish them off with a hand drawn set of eyes and whiskers. Then glue the bunnies right to the striped straw (I chose pink and green ones!), leaving enough room so that they’ll pop out of the glass, but don’t touch the top of the straw. I can’t wait to pop these cute little guys into a mimosa this weekend!




New Year’s Brunch Mini-Pancakes.

There are few things I adore more than styling up a pretty table for a gathering — so I jumped at the chance to borrow vintage jadeite and milk glass pieces from the new Pop and Circumstance rentals collection and pull together a festive New Year’s Brunch. Jadeite was probably one of the first vintage items that I started to collect when tagging along with my mom and aunt to estate sales and flea markets. I’m drawn to the rich cool colors and all of the variety in how the material was used for kitchenwares. This collection has grown to include quite the comparable set of milk glass as well, and Becky — the owner of Pop and Circumstance— and I have bonded over our mutual love for the pieces. I used a few pieces from my collection as inspiration and Becky filled in the rest with vintage linen napkins, milk glass tumblers that were used to hold flatware, and even a nesting set of jadeite bowls for me to mix up my mini-pancakes in. These tiny pancakes were the focal point of the brunch — mini-stacks topped with berries make for an easy grab off the buffet table when guests are mingling (and isn’t everything cuter when we make it bite-sized?).

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New Year’s Eve DIY: Resolution Party Horns.

Here’s the thing — those glitzy crowns and party horns that we all buy for New Year’s — they’re super corny, but so very necessary. I like the annual challenge of finding new ways to update these simple party-store  finds into something a little bit more special. Last year I used glitter letter stickers to write out messages on simple paper party horns — and this year I took the same concept and revamped it. With some metallic Sharpie markers and a little bit of patience I carefully hand-wrote silly New Year’s resolutions on a set of big party horns. I plan to pop them all in a vase for some table-decor, and let my guests pick a resolution that matches their personality (and sense of humor!).

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4 Fun Twists on Thanksgiving Recipes.

At the Wayfair + Boston Bloggers ‘Home for the Holidays’ Event last weekend, my Boston-blogging partner in crime Alison gave a great chat about planning your content around the holidays and one of her pieces of advice was resurfacing old posts to share when seasonally relevant. It got me thinking about some of my favorite Thanksgiving recipes from blog posts past. As I’m sure you’re in a similar Thanksgiving menu planning mode that I’m in this week, I thought I’d round up four of my favorite that offer a fun twist on a traditional Thanksgiving food element.

To start things off: a seasonal cocktail that brings apple cider to the forefront, Apple Autumn Punch. A tasty appetizer that brings in the sweet flavors of apple pie but the savory balance of a baked brie, Baked Brie with Apple Compote. We always have mac and cheese on our Thanksgiving menu for the vegetarians, and this version is baked in cored apples; Mac and Cheese Baked Apples. For dessert, I’ve tried a bite sized version of pumpkin pies and used cookie cutters to spell out a message of thanks: Thankful for Pie.

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A Holiday Table DIY Menu.

On our holiday dinner table, space can be at a premium — and we would always prioritize food and drink over tons of decorative details, which is where the idea for this simple, multi-use DIY came from. I washed out a rich green colored wine bottle with the intention of serving water in it on the Thanksgiving table, and decided to give it one more purpose: a passable menu detailing all of the great Thanksgiving dishes we’ll be feasting on. With a thick permanent marker, I hand-lettered the main dishes down the center of the bottle and finished it off with a large script ‘menu’ title where the base and neck meet. The best part? It costs nothing to make (well, minus the cost of the wine, but let’s be honest: I was going to drink that anyway!). IMG_5082-0.JPG

Four Festive Place Cards for the Holiday Table.

I spent Saturday at the Wayfair + Boston Bloggers‘ Home for the Holidays event and it got me majorly into the holiday spirit. I’m fine waiting a little longer until we start chatting about Christmas, but Thanksgiving is just 3 weeks away so you better believe I’m starting to scheme up holiday  tablescape decorations. I started to test  a few ideas for place cards using natural elements — first, a big fresh artichoke centered on a plate with a small hand-drawn paper banner that I lettered in gold. For the next  place card I tied a silk blush ribbon around the stem of a tiny pumpkin (I love the golden and green colors in this one!). I used a deep red pomegranate and a gold permanent marker to create some faux-calligraphy for another option. And my fourth and final test was a small wreath that I made out of fresh thyme sprigs. A small piece of peach ribbon covered up where I tied off the wreath and I personalized it with a gold glitter monogram sticker. This one was my favorite because it smelled so fresh and rich! So what do you think, any favorites?
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