Hope yall had a pleasant weekend.
Matt and I stayed in on Friday night and popped open a bottle of wine from our last visit to Charlottesville wine country.
I really love sipping wine while cooking. And Friday’s dinner took quite a while to prepare…I finally got around to trying the famous cauliflower pizza crust that’s been floating around the web. There are tons of recipes out there, but I used this one (with real eggs) so I could use my almond meal instead of cheese.
While it was pretty time-consuming, I thought the crust turned out great! I loved the nutty flavor. The texture wasn’t that different from a flatbread or thin crust pizza, but wasn’t doughy at all like a hand tossed or thicker crust.
Since I already had my food processor out, I decided to make a spicy cashew crema to go with the pizza, which I topped with ground beef, bacon, mushrooms, and peppers. Sadly, I didn’t really like the crema (just too weird). I think the combination of a veggie crust, too much tomato sauce (which I don’t really love on any pizza), and the lack of cheese just made this pizza tooo heathy! Don’t worry, I made up for it on Saturday night:)
A friend gave Matt and I a giftcard to The Porch as a wedding gift, so we checked it out for dinner. But first, we stopped at a cute bar called Victor Tangos for a cocktail. I had an apricot mint julep!!
The menu at The Porch features a lot of classic, comfort food so I switched to beer with dinner because it seemed more appropriate. We started with the brisket sliders, which were simply amazing. The meat to bun ratio was ideal and the sauce was delicious.
For my entree, I ordered the salmon with tomato marmalade, horseradish spaetzle, mushrooms, and salsa verde. The fish was perfectly cooked and I loved the flavors – especially the wild mushrooms!
Matt got the pork tenderloin special served with apples and figs, which was also excellent – perfect for fall and we actually had some fall-ish temps this weekend!
I also finally watched The Great Gatsby. I wasn’t expecting the modern touches, but I really liked the movie. We received this fancy bourbon as a house-warming gift, and made sure to make mini cocktails to sip on during all the party scenes:)
Cheers to a productive week.Read More
Matt and I drove down to Fredericksburg, Texas for two nights to relax and check out the hill country! Sometimes I have trouble taking it easy when we go on vacation because we plan so much and want to hit all the cool restaurants and bars. But this was the first trip in a long time that felt like a true getaway. We rented a little cottage and really enjoyed the outdoor space. The hill country was so peaceful, and since we were there on a Monday and Tuesday, a lot of things were closed. We enjoyed take-out pizza and mexican food on our patio, visited wineries and picnicked for lunch, drank wine by the fire pit, ate salted caramel and peanut butter fudge (and maybe a piece of chocolate bacon), went for a run that ended with iced coffee, tasted beer, looked at the stars from the hammock, and had a big breakfast before the drive home. I can’t wait to go back!
I feel like a lucky, lucky girl – I’m getting a husband and he cooks!
I went to my usual weight lifting class at the gym today, and came home on the late side to find Matt wearing a Duke apron. He mentioned that he’d get something ready for dinner tonight, but I didn’t expect him to make anything fancy. There was wine!
I knew it was gonna be good when I smelled fresh basil.
Matt made jalapeno-basil pork chops. The sauce was sweet and spicy and amazing!!!! Apparently, the secret is red pepper jelly. Seriously, the.best.sauce. The pork was also super tender. And brussels are one my favorite vegetables, so I always enjoy a big pile of ‘em roasted, especially when I don’t have to do the roasting!
You bet I’m going to bed happy tonight. That’s all folks.Read More
I feel like I’m in this peaceful period – the calm before the storm. This winter has been relatively slow in terms of plans and events, and while I know things are about to be super busy, I’ve just been enjoying going to work, slowly making my way through the giant to-do list that is the wedding, and taking pleasure in the slow pace of the cold season. Here’s what I’ve been loving lately:
- I’ve been trying to work out in the mornings 2 or so days a week, so that I can better utilize my time in the evening. I really can’t even describe how wonderful it feels to get home from work and not have to think about going anywhere. I’ve always hated evening workouts, and I’m especially appreciating getting cozy at night during the winter. A few years ago, I would have been bored at home or craving happy hour, but these days, there’s nothing better than being warm on the couch with free time. The best nights involve Downton Abby (I’m stuck now btw because Netflix doesn’t have season 2) or a movie.
- Caitlin’s cornbread quiche. I love that this is easy, delicious, produces leftovers, and can be made with essentially any toppings. I keep coming back to it over and over again.
- Wedding planning, while quite stressful and sometimes annoying, is so fun. For the most part, I’ve really enjoyed the process and I’m starting to realize that I’m a very visual person. I love just looking. The flowers, colors, patterns, paper, dresses, shoes are all so darn beautiful these days, that wedding browsing has become my favorite way to waste time. Even though I’ve already planned so many of the details, I still want to look!
- Date night. There’s just nothing quite like a good one-on-one date (I would be terrible on The Bachelor). It’s no secret that I’m obsessed with going out to dinner, but one of the reasons I love it so much is because it allows for quality time without all the distractions of work, school, or life. Matt and I had great conversation just sitting at the bar on Friday night, and it felt so refreshing after a long week.
- Wine. Every year, after I’ve had every imaginable chocolate porter, coffee stout, pumpkin ale, and winter barley wine during the holidays, I start to crave a little break from beer. And then I have a glass of juicy red wine and remember that I adore wine too! My love for beer just sometimes overpowers it and I have to go on a wine kick to rekindle the flame.
What’s something simple that you’re loving about life?Read More
Ahh, friends, this weekend was peaceful.
And I just got back from seeing Les Miserables. Matt and I took sandwiches and had a Monday night dinner date. The movie is SO.GOOD and very beautiful.
After the holidays, I really needed a Friday night in, so that’s what I did – a delicious cabernet from the Wall Street Journal annual selection (a gift from Matt’s parents!) was opened. Matt and I accidentally drank the whole bottle because we liked it that much:)
To go with the wine, I baked The Meat House spicy marinated chicken that I picked up back in November. Served with lemongrass rice, it was awesome! There were lots of leftovers that made for great salads and quesadillas.
How cute is this pancake bar Matt set up Saturday morning? We had tickets to the Duke-Wake basketball match, so we had a late breakfast before the noon game.
Enter weekly pizza craving on Saturday night: a soft egg, mushroom, bacon, and arugula pizza from the tasty Pizzeria Toro down the street.
And on Sunday, we registered for our wedding! I thought picking out things in the store [Macys] was was kind of overwhelming. But, once I got to my couch and could take my time looking over things online, it was really fun. I’m excited, but I also feel a little weird just picking out so many nice things for someone else to buy. It reminded me that time is moving so fast – less than five months to go!
Hope yall had a good weekend as well:)Read More