Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Eat, Drink, and Stella & Dot!

I have never been a huge fan of the sales parties where you buy candles, baskets, etc. But I finally decided to host my first one when my friend Julie started selling Stella & Dot. I was a huge fan of the jewelry and wanted to help her get established in her new venture. Plus, it was a great excuse for a party!

If you haven't heard of Stella & Dot yet, you need to check them out. Over 1/2 of the items are under $50 and the quality is outstanding. They have scarves and purses too. Click here to see for yourself and shop. The Bardot Hoop Earrings in silver are my favorites - wonder if Santa will bring them to me this year? Rumor has it that my bridemaids' gifts are from here too.

While there was a TON of food, I kept it stress free by making simple recipes that were easy to make. Instead of making homemade pizzas for a large crowd, I opted to order take out from a cute local shop called Reddi's. Our favorite combo is meatball, roasted red bell pepper and onions. Deliciouso!

I like to live dangerously so I tried out three NEW recipes and thankfully they all turned out great! I have a new favorite cookie and you can check out the recipe for Pretzel Crusted Chocolate Chip Cookie Squares at Cooker Girl as part of the Ohio Blogging Association blog swap. (If you want to check out the other participating blogs, click here for a list and links.)

I also made Kahlua-Pecan-Brown Sugar Baked Brie from The Noble Pig. Here's their gorgeous photo of it since mine looked like shit I forgot to take a close up picture of it.
As always, I used their recipe for inspiration but didn't follow it exactly. I put 1 cup Kahlua and 1/2 cup brown sugar in a pan and got it hot and bubbly. I poured it over a wheel of brie that I cut the top off of. I fancied up the top with some salted pecans, then I baked it until it was a bubbling oozing puddle of YUM. 
I served mine with apples,Tastefully Simple Twisty Grahams, Almondina pumpkin spice crackers (Ohio company - bonus!) cranberry almond THINaddictives, and Mary's Gone Crackers. To say this was a hit would be an understatement. 
*Tip: Line your pan in aluminum foil because it's messy.*

I tried to compensate for the splurgy goodness of those first two by making something healthy so I chopped up a brussels sprout salad. This was the most labor intensive thing I made thanks to all the brussels sprouts that needed sliced. If you have a mandolin it would go a lot faster. My inspiration was this recipe from Pinch of Yum

Citrus Sprouts Salad w/ Prosciutto, Pomegranate and Apples
"Super Stella Salad"

  • 1 lemon
  • 1 orange
  • ½ cup citrus olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 6 slices prosciutto, cooked until crisp then thinly sliced
  • 4 dozen brussels sprouts, thinly sliced
  • 2 green onions, sliced
  • 1 cup chopped pecans
  • 1/2 cup grated Pecorino-Romano cheese
  • 1/2 cup pomegranate seeds
  • 1 cup chopped apples (I used Honeycrisp)

For the dressing, zest the lemon and orange into a small bowl. Juice both fruits into the same bowl. Whisk together with the olive oil and S+P. The olive oil I used was a 50/50 combo of extra virgin and my absolute favorite Citrus Reserve Blood Orange Olive Oil.   

Mix all the dry ingredients together then toss with the dressing just before serving. Perfect for the holidays with the red and green!

I also roasted chickpeas for the first time - super easy and addictive! 
  • Drain and rinse a can (or three!) of chickpeas. 
  • Place on a paper towels and rub dry. 
  • Discard any skins that come off. 
  • Place on foil lined cookie sheet and spritz with olive oil. 
  • Sprinkle seasoning on top and bake until crunchy. 
I baked mine at 425 degrees for about 30 minutes. They should crunch like chips but not be too brown. Watch closely at the end so they don't burn. I used Northwoods Fire seasoning from Penzey's (it's a perfect combo of smokey and spicy,) a few shakes of garlic granules, a sprinkle of salt and about 1 T brown sugar. Click here for more seasoning combos - or use your imagination!

Hope you enjoy the recipes! They are all perfect for the upcoming holidays and will leave you plenty of time for mingling. 

If you want to start your holiday shopping from the comfort of your home, you can order Stella and Dot online.  Follow them on Facebook for lots of pop-up sales too. For every order received for my trunk show, I'm making a donation to the Cleveland Sight Center in honor of my Grammie's birthday this month. If you have questions or want to host your own show, just let me or Julie know.


  1. I loved everything you made that night! Yumm yum yum!!!!

  2. Wish I could have been there!


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