Hello Yummy!ย 

I stopped into my adorable little, local cupcake shop today. So pretty in pink, and so many choices. I stopped in for my sons birthday and some special treats. I am a sucker for a cupcake and love them for birthdays! I decided on mini cupcakes because, well, I couldn’t decide! Haha! Highlight flavors today were Salted Caramel, and French Toast! What?! Yum. Who’s gonna be more excited for desert? Me or him? I can’t tell…

What are your favorite birthday treats? 

And, your favorite flavors? 

@hellocupcaketacoma


Outdoor Movie Night๐ŸŽฌ

In an effort to squeeze every last little moment out of Summer. This last weekend was movie night! 

It was equipped with a plethora of dogs, hot dogs, popcorn and candy. 

The Goonies was the feature of the evening. 

I scoured Craiglist and found an amazing 13′ blow up movie screen by Airblown that’s awesome. I got a great little projector off of Amazon by a company called Corprit. It wireless and connects itself automatically to my Wifi. How great is that? So, I just plug in my speaker and my Roku and that’s it, good to go! 

I spread some rugs, pillows and beanbag chairs. 

When you dress your backyard with hanging lights, it makes it magical. 

Blueberry Cherry Bacon Bites…

Need a faster then fast appetizer for a party? I threw these together in no time. I picked up festive toothpicks and some fresh fruit, cheese and cured meats cut them into bite size pieces. Think about interesting combinations. Here’s is cherry, bacon, Sheeps milk Parma, and blueberry. Also, cantaloupe, prosciutto and Parma. Some were just with fruit alone. 

They worked perfectly for the party and were a total hit. No muss, no fuss. And, everyone loved the bite sized combos! 

I’m interested in trying watermelon and pineapple versions next. Think of all the great party themes and color combos possible! 

Quick and Easy Mini Cherry Pies๐ŸŒฟ


What’s better then a little cherry pie in the Summer?  But, I wanted to try something fast and super simple to take to the backyard or Summer events. 

I ‘can’ all sorts of things and have the lids laying around. And, after seeing  something similar figured I would love to try this out myself. 



I love homemade pie crust and my bestie has given me the recipe for one that’s truly incredible. I will be using that in the future. For now, it was the Pillsbury ready made crust and a quick pie fill recipe from the “Joy of Cooking” cookbook. I wanted to see how fast this could be if necessary. All in all, this can take around an hour from start to finish this way. If you make your dough from scratch ahead, even better. But, prepping will take a bit more time. 

I used the following recipe for the filling and two boxes of crust for a total of 12 pies: 

5 cups pitted fresh cherries (from my backyard right now…oh yeah!) 

3/4 cup granulated sugar

3 1/2 tablespoons of corn starch 

1 teaspoon of fresh lemon juice 

2 tablespoons of water

1/4 teaspoon of almond extract

Smidge of butter under each top layer

1 egg for wash 

Sugar for topping the crust before baking 

Mix filling and let sit for 15 minutes approximately. 

I prepped my crust and decorations during this time. And, turned the oven on. 

Fill those mini bad boys. Cover and crimp the sides of your crust with a fork, brush with your egg wash, sprinkle with sugar and bake. 

Oven at 350* 25-30 minutes or golden brown, depending on your oven. 

Let’s those little cuties cool a bit, then carefully push them out from the bottoms! With a side of ice cream or a can of whip cream and hoping to be the hit of all my parties this season!! ๐Ÿ™Œ๐Ÿผ๐Ÿ’



โ€‹โ€‹

Bourbon Vanilla Milkshakes with Cowboy Bark๐ŸŒฟ

 Boozy milkshakes! How is this not a good idea for any sunny Summer weekends, holiday, treat day?!! 

I found the Cowboy Bark at Trader Joes. I poured in 1 1/2 ounces of whiskey but, dark rum would work just fine. Add your ice cream and two or three chunks of bark. Whip cream, chocolate, garnish…enjoy! 

Grape Schiacciata ๐ŸŒฟ๐Ÿ‡๏ปฟ

This tasty treatis pronounced “ski-ah-CHA-ta” and is a Tuscan variation on delicious focaccia bread. It would make a great little companion this Summer with some yummy cheese and a glass on Chainti, Valpolicella. Any wine really. I think I might try it with cherries soon.
Makes 1 loaf

1 Package pre-made dough. 

Extra virgin olive oil 

Honey

3/4 cup seedless organic black grapes or Concord grapes

1 1/2 tsp. Kosher salt

2 tbsp. Fresh rosemary leaves

Heat oven to 400*. I used pre-made plain dough from Trader Joes to make it even faster and simpler. Take the dough out and let rise for about 20 minutes. Brush it with a bit of olive oil and some honey. Place on a baking sheet and form into a free form oval. Use your fingers to dimple the dough and sprinkle ontheright grapes encouraging them to fall into the spaces. Drizzle with more olive oil, sprinkle with salt and fresh rosemary. Bake 25 to 30 minutes or until golden brown.

I love a Sheeps milk pecorino from Trader Joes and there are some great inexpensive  wine options to go with. 

Foil wrapped cheeks…

Ever had Cheeks? Halibut cheeks. Get your minds out of the gutter. Geez. 

Anyway, I found them at fish market. And, they aren’t always available. Oh boy but, when they are. Yes, yes and yes. 

Seattle weather has been hot. Like 90s hot. And, the last thing I wanted to do was turn onthe oven. This worked for this fish but, why not others? We have all Summer people. 


Start with the foil, throw in some fresh veggies. These, are snap peas and onions then I added some chopped garlic, olive oil, capers, a little lemon squeeze, topped it with a bit of yummy, yummy Dungeness crab and sealed up that sucker for 15 on the BBQ! Hello delicious! 

It was truly outstanding and didn’t add one ounce of heat to the already hot little box called home, that was happening that day. I assume we will have a few more of those to come…

Try it you love it and let me know what you think, how it was and what you used! 

Grapefruit Sunrise…๐ŸŒฟ

Well, it’s my birthday tomorrow and although I’m one year older the fun shouldn’t stop should it? I empathically say,no! 

So, I’ve decided to start this year out with a bang. Pink loveliness and 3 of my favorites, Vodka, Sparkeling Rose’ and Grapefruit juice…

Pretty, tasty and memorable…

INGREDIENTS (for 6 servings)

12 ounces of Sparkeling  Rose Brut

12 ounces of grapefruit juice

6 ounces of vodka (I love Titos or Kettle One)

1/2 ounce of mint simple syrup(sugar water with mint leaves infused)


Combine the vodka, grapefruit juice, rose, and simple syrup and shake over ice until chilled, then strain and fill glasses. Garnish with grapefruit rounds and mint. 

Then, let the fun commence! Happy June! 

The Well Stocked Home Bar๐ŸŒฟ


 I have been in the hostility business at one point or another, from birth. No, seriously. I really have. Being a great hostess is in my blood. My folks had a fully stocked bar forever ,when they were younger. My high school friends would “Ooo and ahh” over its magnitude. Honestly, I wasn’t interested in it like that,ever. It served a purpose. My parents party guests. And, entertaining is always the most fun when your the one ready for the party, isn’t it?  And, hopefully always for the right party guests! But, we will save that topic for another time though. Being stocked sure makes it easy to slip into your favorite clothes, put on that perfect playlist and get to visiting with your company, even if it’s just two of you. The record player has changed to a speaker and an iPhone but, keeping it classy never goes out of style, does it? 

Vodka– I’m a fan of Ketel One, Titos is good, Grey Goose is another.

Gin– Tanqeray is a steady standard, Hendricks is a nice herbal variety, Bombay Sapphire is a classic. 

Scotch– Scotch drinkers chime in here. There are all sorts. I don’t partake but, I know this gets serious amongst many. Glenfiddich, Glenmorangie, Glenlivet, any thing with a “Glen” leading seems like a safe bet if your going for very nice. 

Whiskey-I do like a decent Whiskey and will have things like Makers Mark, Knob Creek or Woodford Reserve. 

Rum-Not really as popular as in the past but, don’t forget all those tasty tropical drinks for the Summer always seem to have rum. I’m in love with Old Monk on the rocks sometimes, and Diplomatico a Venezulan Rum that is so yummy but, hard to find, then it tails out for me on preference. There’s always just Bacardi.

Dry Vermouth-for Martinis 

Sweet Vermouth-for Manhattans

Bourbon-Bulleit Bourbon is tasty, Old Weller is another.

Tequila– Is making a huge boutique come back. Gone are the days of the not so spectacular, cheap tequilas. And, tequila bars are popping up all over the place. The variations are vast but, Herradurra, Patron, and Hornitos, I think are solid choices. 

This gets us down to the mixers and garnishes: 

Roses lime juice

Triple Sec-margaritas among other things

Club Soda-buy the cans and stash these. They keep forever and you don’t have to open up a huge bottle that just gets wasted anyway. 

Tonic Water-same goes here

Tomato Juice-again small cans, less waste. 

Bitters-an easy addition also, great for stomach aches with soda water. Thought I would throw that in, in case you didn’t know that one. 

Grenadine 

Cocktail Olives 

Cocktail Onions– there’s a brand called McSweets around my neck of the woods that are great in Martinis for a Gibson 

Olive Juice– my friends are into dirty Martinis. It keeps in the fridge. There’s never enough in that silly little jar packed with olives, is there. Who knows about this besides me? 

Lemons and Limes

Juices-Are best fresh, I love breaking out the juicer and a giant bag of grapefruits, or oranges. There’s nothing better then  fresh squeezed juice in a drink. But, watch your time and the mess. This is something best the day before or the morning of…

And then, you need a shaker, stirrer, strainer and some straws. 

A stocked bar is an investment but, think about piece mealing together over time. I have a few friends that do this, even in their small spaces. Some, even ambitiously make their own bitters and shrubs…I did say ambitiously though. It’s a fun foodie hobbie for me and my restaurant friends. But, the store has some great choices nowadays for just about everything if you don’t want the hassle. 

Think about a fun bar cart or cabinet to dedicate space for this and keep stock of what comes and goes. This is a fun way to also display some of the fancier things like glasses and a cocktail set, metal straws and napkins as you add things to your collection. 

And, it’s easy to stock up as long as your not drinking it faster than you can buy it. Now, I encourage responsibility always. It doesn’t go bad people. It’s great to have the basics (I know not everyone will think they need everything here, modify if you must). Here’s some necessary items I think to keep on hand to meet everyone’s want and needs and for letting the festivities go off without a hitch. Of course, when it’s not BYOB (love that too) darlings. Cheers! ๐ŸŒฟ

   
Sonya Law

Bar Photo credit: Lula and Georgia