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Eat + Drink

friday five | food diary.

J:

Mercy mercy mercy. Friday is finally HERE.

I’ve been sifting through recent iPhone photos and realized I’ve been hoarding #foodpics and resto recommendations. For shame. Let’s catch up, shall we?

The Silver Moon | Lake Oconee: L and I had a girls getaway at Lake Oconee a few weeks ago and shared the most delicious fresh shrimp. It was photo-worthy obviously.

*Note: You may have trouble finding this gem of a restaurant because their sign simply says “Bar and Grill” so keep an eye out.

FF Silver Moon
🍤

JCT Kitchen & Bar | Atlanta: You probably saw this gorgeous sight on our instagram page, but I had to give more info because it was THAT good. Steak tartare with a side of fried corn on the cobb. {not pictured MOMO sauvignon blanc}

FF JCT
🌽

Joey D’s Oak Room | Atlanta: Keeping with the steak theme… Sometimes a great steak is exactly what you’re looking for. Look no further than Joey D’s Oak Room! Conveniently located across from Perimeter Mall with a bar you MUST see to believe.

FF Joey D's
🍟

Gino’s East Pizzeria | Chicago: After dining here on my last two trips to Chicago, I definitely need to share the best deep dish in town. Gino’s East is exactly what they say it is… legendary. Can’t make it to Chicago? Gino’s will ship a pie directly to your door. #dangerous

FF Ginos
🍕

Smith & Wollensky | Chicago: Exactly what a crab cake should be… crab. To die for. And highly recommend dining al fresco.

FF Smith and Wollensky
🍴

Now. What | Where are we eating this weekend!?

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quick and easy app: caprese bruschetta

So this delicious-looking concoction appeared on our Pinterest feed yesterday. It took some googling (don’t you hate how some pins don’t include links?!), but we finally found the recipe. This just might be the perfect summer appetizer – simple ingredients, fresh flavors and super quick and easy.

Pesto Caprese Loaf
all our favorite flavors in one delicious app. photo: Mommy’s Mayhem

Caprese Bruschetta (it’s not technically bruschetta but that sounds better than “Caprese Loaf”)

What You Need:

  • 1 loaf french bread
  • 1-2 containers prepared basil pesto, depending on how much you love pesto (make your own using the recipe here)
  • 1 log of goat cheese, sliced, or one 8 oz ball fresh mozarella, sliced
  • 1 container of sun dried tomatoes or freshly sliced grape tomatoes

What You Do:

  • Preheat oven to 375.
  • Split loaf open lengthwise so that you have two long halves.
  • Spread the pesto on the two halves of the loaf.
  • Layer the goat cheese or mozarella over the pesto.
  • Top with tomatoes.
  • Place on a baking sheet and pop in the oven for about 8-12 minutes, depending on how crispy you like your bread.
  • Enjoy with a glass or three of your favorite wine.

Adapted from Mommy’s Mayhem

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friday four: links we love.

Happy Friday, glitter girls! Check out these links to what we’re loving today. There are only four because we have had a TIME this week (who says #MayMayhem is over?!)

Friday Four The Glitter Life

1 ΙΙ Delish Snack Recipe. We’re definitely into brown-bagging (more money to spend on our nails!), so we’re totes baking a batch of Rosemary Parmesan Chickpeas for lunch next week.

2 ΙΙ Cocktail Napkins. Our love affair with linen cocktail napkins continues. How cute would these be at your next backyard fiesta?

3 ΙΙ Inspiring Words. You may have already seen Sheryl Sandberg’s essay on the death of her husband. If you haven’t, this beautifully-written perspective on love and loss is worth the read.

4 ΙΙ Happy Dance. If watching this video doesn’t make you want to throw a dance party, nothing will. In fact, we’re going to do just that when we go to the lake next weekend!

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recipe: spinach and cheese strata. 

L made this delicious Spinach and Cheese Strata for Mother’s Day brunch – it was a hit! Yall know we love anything we can make ahead…means more time to work on our tablescape. Add a fresh fruit salad (L chose Watermelon Feta Salad) and muffins, and you’ve got an easy, elegant brunch. We adapted this from an Annie’s Eats post; here’s our version (with notes).

Make-Ahead Spinach and Cheese Strata

Spinach and Cheese Strata
photo: annie’s eats.

 

What You Need:

  • 2 tbsp. unsalted butter
  • 1½ cups onion, finely chopped (basically, one large yellow onion)
  • 2 (10 oz.) packages frozen chopped spinach, thawed and drained (we used bagged, organic frozen spinach)
  • 1 tsp. salt, divided
  • ½ tsp. pepper, divided
  • Dash ground nutmeg (the original recipe called for freshly grated…but ground works just fine)
  • 8 cups cubed French or Italian bread, cut into 1-inch cubes (basically one large loaf)
  • 6 oz. coarsely grated Swiss or Gruyere cheese (about 2 cups)
  • 2 oz. finely grated Parmesan (about 2/3 cup)
  • 9 large eggs
  • 2¾ cup milk (we used Horizon Organic 1% low-fat milk)

What You Do:

  • Melt the butter in a medium skillet over low heat.  Add the onions to the pan and sauté until soft, about 5 minutes.  Add ½ teaspoon of the salt, ¼ teaspoon of the pepper, and the nutmeg, and continue to cook for 1 minute more.  Stir in the spinach, remove from the heat and set aside.
  • Liberally coat the inside of a 2½-3 quart baking dish with cooking spray.  Layer the bottom of the dish with one third of the bread cubes.  Top with one third of the spinach mixture and one third of each of the cheeses.  Repeat these layers twice more with the bread, spinach and cheese. It’s important to grate your cheeses ahead of time, so that you can distribute them evenly in your layers.
  • In a medium bowl, combine the eggs, milk, the remaining ½ teaspoon of the salt and ¼ teaspoon of the pepper.  Whisk together until blended.  Pour the mixture evenly over the bread and spinach layered in the baking dish.  Cover with plastic wrap and chill for at least 8 hours or up to 1 day.
  • Remove from the refrigerator 30 minutes before baking.  Preheat the oven to 350˚ F.  Bake uncovered until puffed, golden brown and cooked through, 45-55 minutes.  Let stand at least 5 minutes before serving.
  • Serves 8.

**This is our version of a well-loved, well-published recipe. Annie’s Eats adapted this from Smitten Kitchen. Originally appeared in Gourmet, February 2003.

Bonus: Sample Brunch Menu

  • Spinach and Cheese Strata
  • Watermelon and Feta Salad
  • Blueberry Streusel Muffins
  • Assorted Breakfast Sausages
  • Iced Coffee Bar (we paired this pre-made iced coffee with whipped cream and cute straws)
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recipe: pesto artichoke grilled cheese.

Mmmmonday. Need a quick and easy idea for dinner tonight? Upgrade your usual grilled cheese sandwich to this summer-y pesto, artichoke and havarti version by Two Peas and Their Pod, one of our fave food blogs. Use prepared pesto if you don’t feel like making your own Spinach Basil Pesto. This is just as easy as the classic you loved growing up but wayyyy more sophisticated and flavorful.

The Glitter Life Pesto Artichoke Sandwich

 

Pesto, Artichoke and Havarti Grilled Cheese by Two Peas and Their Pod

What You Need:

  • 2 tablespoons butter, softened
  • 4 slices whole-grain bread (such as Eureka! Organic Bread)
  • 4 tablespoons Spinach Basil Pesto or prepared pesto
  • 4 slices Arla Dofino® Creamy Havarti (or 4 ounces, grated)
  • 2/3 cup sliced artichoke hearts (from jar or can, drained)
  • Sea salt, for sprinkling on sandwich

What You Do:

  • Butter the outsides of the bread. Spread the insides of the bread slices evenly with pesto. Put a slice of Havarti on the bottom piece of bread, add artichoke hearts, and top with another slice of Havarti. Place the other piece of bread on top, creating a sandwich.
  • Heat a large skillet or griddle pan over medium-low heat and place the sandwiches butter side down. Cook for 4-5 minutes, or until the cheese starts to melt and the bread is golden brown. Carefully flip the sandwich over and cook for an additional about 3-4 minutes. Remove from heat and sprinkle with sea salt. Cut sandwiches in half and serve immediately.
The Glitter Life Pesto Artichoke Sandwich
mmmmmmmmmmmm, enjoy!
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friday five: links to stuff we love.

You guys. Two big pieces of news. 1) J IS BACK. Stay tuned for posts on her amazing honeymoon. 2) We are ready for the WEEKEND. We know you’re shocked. Check out five things that are making us happy right now:

Friday Five Link Love
bikini + shades + cocktails + watermelon = our perfect weekend

1. L Space Print Wrap Top. L*Space makes the best bikinis; every year, one silhouette dominates Pinterest. Last year it was the Audrey fringe top; this year it’s the Chloe wrap top. We love how the wrap-style gives us maximum adjustability. Bonus: the print reverses to basic black.

2. TOMS Aviators. We are both devoted Ray-Ban wearers…but right now we’re really loving these Kilgore aviators at our favorite do-good company, Toms. For every pair sold, Toms will give a child the gift of sight. We’re offering a special discount on these just for you. Call Sole at 912-764-7463, mention “The Glitter Life” and get an extra 15% off a pair for yourself.

3. Cocktail Napkins. MUST HAVE. This adorable cocktail napkin (comes in a set of four) would look even better sitting underneath a Grapefruit Paloma.

4. Watermelon Salad. One of our favorite summertime recipes. So easy to throw together – all you need is watermelon, mint and feta.

5. How To: Host a Successful Sale on Instagram! If you need a little extra cash to support your bikini and sunglasses habit (ahem), check out these handy suggestions for throwing a killer closet sale on Instagram. Haul out your gently-used duds, snap some pics, and start making money. Then spend it on cute cocktail napkins.

PS – We’re excited to celebrate our wonderful mothers this weekend! Share your Mother’s Day pics with us on Instagram (@glitter_blog_xo).

 

 

 

 

 

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gift guide: last minute mother’s day gifts.

Woof, it’s Wednesday. And in four days it will be SUNDAY. Mother’s Day. You didn’t forget, did you? To help you last-minute shoppers, we picked out eight perfect Mother’ Day gifts…most available to ship or purchase ASAP.

Mother's Day Gift Guide

1. MacBeth Weekender Polo ($49). Preppy perfection with white skinnies. Express shipping available.

2. Custom Pet Illustration ($55). Obviously this wouldn’t be ready in time for Sunday…but it’s such a sweet gift, we think you should consider it anyway.

 

3. GroVert Mini Planter ($30). Those of us with black thumbs (ahem, both of us) love a good succulent garden. If you don’t have time to order one online, check with your local florist for delivery. In Statesboro, check with our friends at Colonial House of Flowers (912.764.6097).

4. Tory Burch In Color ($36). A gorgeous coffee table book featuring an inside look at the designer’s life with her boys. Get it in two days with Amazon Prime.

5. Elizabeth & James Nirvana White Gift Set ($75). Notes of peony make this set (eau de parfume, rollerball and body lotion) one of our faves. Plus, Sephora has TONS of gift sets. One- and two-day shipping available.

6. Trader Joe’s Dark Chocolate Tasting Odyssey ($10). Sometimes only chocolate will do. Hopefully Mom will share! Available at Trader Joe stores everywhere.

7. Jack Rogers Nantucket Sandal Gold ($118). These classics will go with everything in her closet this summer. Express shipping available.

8. Dani Rae Gold Quatrefoil Earrings ($29). Lightweight style for every day. Call 912-764-7463 for express shipping.

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review: beauty + essex brunch.

Today we’re flashing back to J’s bachelorette party in New York City to bring you a restaurant review. On the recommendation of our girls at BCBGeneration, we booked a Sunday brunch reservation at Beauty + Essex, a bi-level, chandelier-lit restaurant and bar on the Lower East Side.

The Glitter Life Beauty & Essex
beauty + essex.

B+E has a retro vibe and features a pawn shop entrance (cool but also a little confusing).

The Glitter Life Beauty + Essex
random pawn shop goodies.
BE
shine bright like a diamond.
The Glitter Life Beauty + Essex
stairway to…champagne. photo: newyork.citypudding.com
BE2
this is what happened when we told maggie and mary to “act natural.”

After cocktails at the bar, we moved into the main restaurant for brunch. The real scene at B+E is the champagne brunch upstairs (which was just getting cranked up by the time we left)…but we were in the mood for something more chill after our flights the day before. If you’re looking for great people watching, definitely request to go upstairs!

We enjoyed brunch at a large round table (great for conversation) under a pretty skylight.

The Glitter Life Beauty + Essex
imagine us right there, in the center.

What We Drank + Ate:

Plus mimosas, of course.

The Glitter Life Beauty + Essex
delish roasted potatoes. photo: fitnessnycblog.com
The Glitter Life Beauty + Essex
more brunch deliciousness. photo: you made me like you.

What We Loved:

Everything tasted seriously great, especially that biscuit. We also loved the quirky, speakeasy-ish atmosphere.

What Was Just Okay:

Our service was competent but not amazing.

Our Verdict:

Brunch was great, but if we ever have a chance to go back we’re going for dinner. We can’t stop thinking about the dinner menu – Lobster tacos, anyone?

What’s your favorite brunch spot?

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friday five: link love.

Happy Friday! J’s honeymooning in Italy this week and next, so L is holding down the glitter fort.

Here’s what we’re feeling right now: a charming springtime salad, the cutest tote, a must-try cocktail, how to use your iPhone (really) and a quiz we dare you to take. Hope you love these links as much as we do!

The Glitter Life Friday Five
our weekend musts: two must-makes, two must-dos, and one must-have.

1. Salad Nicoise. We’re craving fresh flavor right now, and this gorg salad (half the joy is in the arranging) brought to you by A Beautiful Mess fits the bill perfectly.

2. Cutest Tote Ever. Yes. Just yes. We’re ordering this tote pronto.

 

3. Grapefruit PalomaWhat’s a Paloma, you ask? A delicious tequila-based cocktail with just the right amount of fizz. So refreshing. Just looking at this picture makes us wish it was happy hour.

4. 20 Cool iPhone Hacks. This article details 20 useful tricks to get the most out of your beloved iPhone. Some you’ll recognize, most you won’t. At least we didn’t! Upgrade to fancy quotation marks? Don’t mind if we DO.

5. Quiz. Flashback to our Seventeen magazine days – who doesn’t love a good quiz? Take the “How Design Savvy Are You?” quiz by Domaine and test whether you know your book-matched from your herringbone. Spoiler: L is a Design Master! But you probably knew that already. 😉

Hope you have a beautiful weekend!

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behind the scenes: j’s wedding weekend.

Okay, this is our last post about J’s wedding weekend. But we really wanted to share some behind-the scenes pics. Enjoy!

FRIDAY

bridesmaids brunch + bubbly at the ritz carlton.
bridesmaids fueled up on brunch + bubbly.
The Glitter Life Brunch
l + j at brunch.
IMG_3837
l made this practice bouquet for j from hydrangeas (picked up at the local publix) and finished with satin ribbon from several of j’s wedding shower gifts. nail polish: essie bachelorette bash.
IMG_3842
bridesmaid kati made these adorbs champagne glasses, customized for each member of the bridal party. on the table: crafting materials (from ikea!) for the rehearsal dinner centerpieces. we all pitched in!
IMG_3848
jay’s mom karen assembled 100+ gift boxes for the cocktail reception guests. inside: georgia peanuts (in mason jars – cute!), bottled water, golf balls and customized koozies and golf tees.
the ritz carlton presidential house, the site of the rehearsal dinner and cocktail reception. also our home away from home for the weekend. 
bridesmaid mary + brendan on the patio at the rehearsal dinner.
bridesmaid mary + brendan on the patio at the rehearsal dinner. loved her maxi dress! 

SATURDAY

IMG_3859
the bridal party got dolled up at The Spa at the Ritz Carlton. j gifted each bridesmaid adorable h&m pajamas to wear while getting ready. also pictured: vintage-y earrings, another gift from j.
bridal attire from head (j's mother's veil)  to toe (christian louboutins). photo: the willets.
bridal attire from head (j’s mother’s veil) to toe (nude peep-toe christian louboutins). photo: the willets.
IMG_3862
rain showers didn’t dampen j’s mood. her photographers were great sports, too! pictured: the pool at the ritz presidential house. our home away from home for the weekend.
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j’s something borrowed: an antique bracelet from l. the bride also borrowed gorg diamond earrings from her aunt.
IMG_3873
one of our favorite pics from the weekend. we snapped this selfie minutes before walking down the aisle!
IMG_3879
presenting mr. and mrs. james murray baker, iv! j’s dress: winnie couture.
IMG_3891
bridesmaids, post-ceremony. from l to r: annie (maid of honor), l (matron of honor), maggie, mary and kati. dresses: alfred sung via weddington way. bouquets: findlay rowe designs.
bridesmaid maggie + talmadge. photo bomb: brendan.
bridesmaid maggie + talmadge. photo bomb: brendan.
IMG_3877
j’s bouquet of peonies wowed everyone. bouquet: findlay rowe designs. cake: the ritz carlton.
jjb3
honestly one of the best meals we’ve ever had: filet of beef tenderloin, seared sea scallops and braised veggies. catering: the ritz carlton.
image2 (2)
the happy couple snapped a pic before digging in to dinner.
The Glitter Life JJB2015
j + maid of honor annie.
The Glitter Life JJB2015
l + joe at the reception. loved the handy pockets on our bridesmaids’ dresses!
JJB 4
…and that’s a wrap! #jjb2015 was one for the books. photo credit: the willets.

 

 

 

 

 

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