Tag

cooking

brunch bunch.

J: I’m always looking for a solid brunch item to throw together on the weekends. When I came across this baked french toast recipe from our fave food blogger, Damn Delicious… game changer.  My sweet husband, Jay, said it would be perfect for Christmas morning and I totally agree. Here’s the skinny:

Ingredients:

  • 3 small French baguettes, ends trimmed and cut into 1/2-inch slices
  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla bean paste
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg (I skipped this)
  • 2 tablespoons confectioners’ sugar

For the maple glaze:

  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup, or more, to taste
the goods.
the goods.

Instructions:

  • Lightly coat a 9×13 baking dish with nonstick spray. Place bread slices evenly into the baking dish.
  • In a large glass measuring cup or another bowl, whisk together milk, eggs, vanilla bean paste, cinnamon and nutmeg. Pour mixture evenly over the bread slices. Cover and place in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours or overnight.
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Place the bread mixture into the oven and bake for 30-35 minutes, or until golden brown.
FT
slices evenly placed.
FT2
mixture poured and ready for the oven.

Melt butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Stir in brown sugar and maple syrup until well combined and slightly thickened, about 2 minutes. Pour mixture evenly over the bread slices.

glazed and golden.
glazed and golden.

Serve immediately, sprinkled with confectioners’ sugar, if desired. It’s desired.

brunch is served.
brunch is served.
Continue Reading

baked spinach + ricotta shells.

The weather has been BLAH for weeks now, and that means we’re spending more nights at home. L whipped up this quick/healthy (but also deliciously comforting) pasta dish on Saturday night.

Ingredients: 
  • 16 jumbo pasta shells
  • 2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 pound baby spinach (or 8 oz frozen spinach, thawed)
  • 1/4 red onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 16 oz skim ricotta cheese (or 8 oz ricotta and 8 oz part-skim mozarella, grated)
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 tablespoon chopped basil
  • 1 1/2 cups marinara sauce
  • 2 tablespoons grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
Method:
  • Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add pasta shells and cook until al dente, about 10 minutes. Drain well then toss with olive oil in a large bowl; set aside.
  • Preheat oven to 375°F. Heat some olive in a wide pan over medium heat. Add red onion and garlic and cook a few minutes, stirring constantly. Add spinach and cook until wilted (or softened, if you used frozen), a few minutes more.
  • Add spinach, onion and garlic to bowl with ricotta, mozzarella (if using), egg and basil to make the filling.
  • Spray the bottom of a shallow baking dish (large enough to hold the shells in one later) with non-stick cooking spray. Add a few spoonfuls of marinara sauce in the bottom. Fill each shell with spinach mixture and arrange in the dish.
  • Pour remaining sauce over and around the stuffed shells and top with Parmigiano Reggiano. Cover with foil and bake until hot throughout, 20 to 30 minutes, then uncover and continue baking until golden brown, about 10 minutes more. Adapted from a Whole Foods recipe.
  • Spinach Filling
    spinach filling.
    Shells
    we squeezed as many shells as possible.
    Ready to Bake
    ready to bake.
    Finished Baked Shells
    of course we forgot to take a pic of our finished product…so here’s one from Whole Foods

    Pour remaining sauce over and around the stuffed shells and top with Parmigiano Reggiano. Cover with foil and bake until hot throughout, 20 to 30 minutes, then uncover and continue baking until golden brown, about 10 minutes more.

Continue Reading

recipe: mussels magnifico.

Okay, so…we haven’t been cooking NEARLY as much as we used to/should be. Life is crazy busy, etc etc. Which means that when we DO get a chance to relax and cook a meal, we are super proud of ourselves get excited and want to share the recipes with you.

Last weekend, L made Mussels Magnifico for the Joes. Don’t be intimidated – this recipe is super easy and quick. And also the perfect excuse to open a bottle of Sauvignon Blanc. Not that we needed one.

Mussels Magnifico

What You Need:

  • 2 pounds mussels (we used frozen, vacuum-packed mussels – don’t judge us, they’re stupid easy)
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 6  cloves garlic, chopped (we really, really love garlic – if you don’t, you can use less)
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste (we like Cento brand, in the tube – give it one epic squeeze)
  • 1 large tomato, diced, with skin on (or use 3 Roma tomatoes)
  • 1 large yellow onion, chopped
  • 3 tablespoons parsley
  • 1 cup Sauvignon Blanc or other dry white wine of your choice (check out Wine Folly for advice on pairings)
  • Lemon slices
  • 1 loaf crusty bread
Mussels Magnifico
Photo courtesy of The Fajdich Times (ours looked exactly like this)

What you do:

  • Heat oil in a large pan. Add onion and saute until golden. Add garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add the remaining ingredients, except the mussels. Bring to a simmer. Stir well and adjust seasoning if necessary. Cover.
  • In the meantime, bring water to a boil in large pot. When water is boiling, add mussels (in bag, in our case) and cook for 7 minutes.
  • Divide mussels among four plates. Spoon sauce over each and serve with crusty bread.

And….magnifico! Right?

**Recipe adapted from several sources, including The Fajdich Times

Continue Reading

eat fresh.

Sometimes you just want a simple, fresh, small salad. This recipe is prefect to prepare the night before and brown bag it to work the next day. We’re all about that.

The Glitter Life Mini-Caprese-Salad
easy and delicious.

 

Mini Caprese Salad

Ingredients:

1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved (try red and yellow for a little color)

8 ounces fresh mini mozzarella

18 basil leaves, chopped

4 tablespoons olive oil

1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

Directions:

Add the cherry tomatoes and mozzarella to a medium sized bowl. Drizzle olive oil. Add basil, salt and pepper. Gently toss. Enjoy!

Continue Reading

we resolve to…

Here at The Glitter Life, we believe in home improvement, self improvement, wardrobe improvement…life improvement in general. We love the start of a new year – it gives us a little extra push to make some positive changes in our lives.

New Years Resolutions
six steps to a better us.

1. Get organized. Try as we might, we’ve never been able to use the “task” function on our phones effectively. We’re paper people, and we like to check stuff off. We love this pretty to-do list from Sugar Paper, now available here.

2. Live healthier by drinking one pressed juice a day. You guys know we love Roots Pressed Juices.

3. Develop a signature scent for our homes and our boutiques. We vote for Voluspa Crisp Champagne, now available here.

4. Give more of our time, our money, our talents and our love.

5. Take care of our skin. We each have a Clarisonic, but we aren’t great about using them every day. This year we vow to make them part of our daily routines.

6. Cook. We both like to whip up party appetizers (also hereherehere and here) but it’s rare that we cook weeknight meals. Stay tuned for some healthy, easy recipes you can make any night of the week.

What changes are you making for 2014? Tweet or Instagram us @glitter_blog_xo.

PS – After ringing in the new year separately (check out our instagram for pics), we met up and took some pretty amazing photos. Maybe we should add another resolution to our list: Take one decent photo together in 2014.

New Year's Eve
this is actually the best one of the night.
Continue Reading

naked champagne cake.

It’s no secret that we love ourselves a little bubbly. So we’re DYING over this Naked Champagne Cake:
 
The Glitter Life Naked-Champagne
 
 
Naked Champagne Cake 
3 cups all-purpose flower
3 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter
2 cups sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
6 egg whites
2 cups champagne
 
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour two 9-inch cake pans (or cut parchment paper to fit).
2. In a bowl combine flour, baking powder + salt. In a mixing bowl beat butter and sugar 3 to 5 minutes until light and fluffy. Add vanilla and beat in the eggs one at a time.
3. Beat in flour mixture and champagne in three alternating additions, starting and ending with flour to prevent curdling. Pour batter into pans and bake 35 minutes or until a knife insterted in the center comes out clean.
4. Let cool and then frost the middle and top layer only with Champagne Buttercream Frosting.
 
Champagne Buttercream Frosting
3/4 stick unsalted butter (room temp)
2 cups confectioners’ sugar
1/4 cup champagne
1/8 cup whole milk
1/2 tablespoon vanilla extract

In a mixing bowl beat butter 1 minute. Gradually add the powdered sugar, champange, milk and vanilla and continue beating until smooth and creamy.

*Adapted from Booze Cakes // Style Within Reach*

yum.
cheers!
Continue Reading

baked macaroni and cheese.

Baby Joe turned three last week (maybe you heard?), and when L asked him what he wanted for his birthday dinner, he said “macaroni and cheese!” This baked macaroni and cheese turned out perfectly and will definitely make an appearance again.

The Glitter Life Mac and Cheese

Baked Macaroni and Cheese by Alton Brown

Ingredients

  • 1/2 pound elbow macaroni
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • 1 tablespoon powdered mustard (don’t have any on hand? no big deal. just leave it out.)
  • 3 cups milk
  • 1/2 cup yellow onion, finely diced
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 large egg
  • 12 ounces sharp cheddar, shredded
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • Fresh black pepper
  • Topping:
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 1 cup panko bread crumbs

Directions

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  • In a large pot of boiling, salted water cook the pasta to al dente.
  • While the pasta is cooking, in a separate pot, melt the butter. Whisk in the flour and mustard and keep it moving for about five minutes. Make sure it’s free of lumps. Stir in the milk, onion, bay leaf, and paprika. Simmer for ten minutes and remove the bay leaf.
  • Temper in the egg. (Don’t know how to do that? Learn how here.) Stir in 3/4 of the cheese. Season with salt and pepper. Fold the macaroni into the mix and pour into a 2-quart casserole dish. Top with remaining cheese.
  • Melt the butter in a saute pan and toss the bread crumbs to coat. Top the macaroni with the bread crumbs. Bake for 30 minutes. Remove from oven and rest for five minutes before serving.

This was DELICIOUS and can totally be made ahead. Just cover, refrigerate and bake when ready. Add a few extra minutes of baking time if it comes out of the refrigerator. Read more here.

Continue Reading

picnic-ing.

Kate Spade Picnic Collage: The Glitter Life
L to R: call to action gia, pack a picnic basket, pack a picnic champagne box, pack a picnic wine tote, pack a picnic apple wristlet, call to action that’s the last straw terry.

Y’all. The weather lately has been amazing. HELLO, SPRING. We missed you. What better way to kick off the season that with a picnic? Kate Spade just released the most amazing picnic accessories we have ever seen. Scoop all one of them, whip up some egg salad sandwiches, and head to Chastain Park.

Which of our picks is your fave? Tweet us! @glitter_blog_xo.

Continue Reading