Simple Summer Appetizer


So I mentioned we were having some friends over Saturday night for what turned into dinner inside thanks to the torrential downpours around here.  Anyway – we made the most delicious appetizer with some garlic scape pesto we had made a while ago and frozen.  This is a great appetizer idea for a summer gathering!

Bruschetta with Tomato and Basil

6 or 7 ripe plum tomatoes (about 1 1/2 lbs)
2 cloves garlic, minced (I omitted since we were eating with garlic-y garlic scape pesto)
1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
6-8 fresh basil leaves, chopped.
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1 baguette French bread or similar Italian bread
Olive oil

Prepare the tomatoes first. Parboil the tomatoes for one minute in boiling water that has just been removed from the burner. Drain. Using a sharp small knife, remove the skins of the tomatoes. (If the tomatoes are too hot, you can protect your finger tips by rubbing them with an ice cube between tomatoes.) Once the tomatoes are peeled, cut them in halves or quarters and remove the seeds and juice from their centers. Also cut out and discard the stem area. Why use plum tomatoes instead of regular tomatoes? The skins are much thicker and there are fewer seeds and less juice.

Chop up the tomatoes finely. Put tomatoes, garlic (again, I omitted the garlic), 1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil, vinegar in a bowl and mix. Add the chopped basil. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Cut your bread into 1/2-inch slices, brush with a little olive oil, and toast under the broiler.  While the bread is still warm, spread a thin layer of the garlic scape pesto on the bread, then top with a spoonful of the tomatoes.


Monday Outfit

I hadn’t mentioned yet, but I found the perfect chambray shirt a few weeks ago at Nordstrom Rack – a style and color exactly what I was looking for, for a moderate price.  I am wearing it today with my favorite neon peach pants, bright nails, tan sandals similar to the ones below, and a dynamic flower necklace for a pop.  Enjoy your week!

Monday Outfit

Slouchy top

Flat leather sandals

Fantasy Jewelry Box flower jewelry

Essie nailpolish

Couple Things…

Since there are storms in the forecast all weekend, we’ve changed our beach plans and now we’re throwing an impromptu party at our house Saturday afternoon/evening with a fun drink and food menu planned – I’ll have recipes and pics to share next week!  In the meantime here are some interesting things from the web this week.  Have a great weekend!

Another yummy idea for zucchini.

These Toms shoes for babies are too cute for the fall!

Have you seen this yet?  Hysterical.

And last…I totally agree, Lord Grantham (by the way, we have to wait until January, 2013 for Downton Abbey Season 3!!)

I’ve Gone Orange…

orange nails (2)

After a late night trip to Target last week to buy an emergency baby monitor (long story), I wandered around looking for a new nail polish color because you can’t go to Target and just get 1 thing, right?  I decided on essie’s bazooka because at quick glance, it looked bright, summer-y, and a touch more orange than I usually go for.  Well, was it ever orange!  Turns out in my late-night-errand-running haze I picked up a neon orange nail polish.

Now, I have embraced the neon trend with home decor and even these great pants, but nails?  Turns out it looked really fun and I kept it for a week or so and will do once or twice more before the summer ends.

Have you embraced the new neon nail trend?

Tomato Mozzarella Baked Zucchini

zucchini tomato mozz

We keep getting zucchini from our CSA.  We like to eat it grilled, roasted, in a pasta dish, as a pancake, but we needed a new idea…  I found a photo on Pinterest that we totally took and made our own for Tomato Mozzarella Baked Zucchini, it was SO good!  We sort of winged it and didn’t use a recipe, but here’s what we did…

Tomato Mozzarella Baked Zucchini

Zucchini, halved, with the seeds scraped out
Shredded mozzarella cheese
Grape tomatoes, halved
Parmesan cheese
Bread crumbs
Olive oil
Fresh basil leaves

Boil your halved, scooped zucchinis for a few minutes to soften and to cut baking time down later.  In the scooped section, sprinkle mozzarella and top with halved grape tomatoes.  Sprinkle with a little Parmesan cheese, bread crumbs, s&p and then drizzle with a bit of olive oil.  Bake for about 15 minutes, broil for maybe 3 to 5 to get a nice crust on top. Then, sprinkle with fresh basil leaves.


Couple Things…

I’m off again today with the baby woohoo!  It’s going to be another crazy hot weekend, we are escaping the city and headed to the beach, can’t wait…  Here are a couple things from around the web this week:

We are not alone with an abundance of herbs…

Yahoo’s new CEO is pregnant and hardly taking a maternity leave at all!

I love this idea to commemorate a great road trip, I would ad a snapshot of the trip as well.

And finally…from the Milly Resort 2013 collection, this is my kind of mother/daughter outfit…

Pineapple Upside Down Cake

Pineapple Upside Down Cake is an awesome dessert, especially for the summer.  I actually think all fruity desserts (with the exception of Holiday Fruitcake) are great for summer.  We went to visit my parents this past weekend and decided PUDC would be a great end to our meal of grilled chicken and orzo salad.  Plus, it’s one of my dad’s favorite desserts.  Best of all, PUDC is SO easy to make!  We used canned pineapple and a really great go-to yellow cake mix from Trader Joe’s.

Pineapple Upside Down Cake

2 Tbs unsalted butter
1/4 C dark brown sugar
1 20 oz. can pineapples in juice
Maraschino Cherries (optional, we opted out)
Yellow Cake mix and required ingredients

Melt butter and pour into the bottom of a 9″ round cake pan.  Sprinkle dark brown sugar over butter and then place your pineapple rounds on top. Squeeze as many as you can in there!  You can also put a little maraschino cherry inside each pineapple round, but I don’t really like them so we omitted.  Then, just prepare the cake mix according to the box instructions, substituting pineapple juice from your canned pineapple in place of the water.  Pour batter over pineapples.  Bake according to your box instructions, let cool completely, flip onto a serving platter and voila!


Rosé Wine

We had a great, summery meal Friday night that I wanted to share.  We made a pizza with mozzarella and prosciutto and once cooked, a salad of arugula and light lemon vinaigrette dressing on top – it was tasty!

But, the best part, is we randomly decided it was time to drink the delicious rosé wine we brought back from our honeymoon 3 years ago.  Rosé is perfect for a hot, summer night – exactly what last Friday night was!  We got the wine in Tavel in the South of France in the middle of a long ride.  The wine luckily survived the plane ride home tucked in my suitcase and has been sitting in our wine rack ever since.

Back to Friday night…we put the baby to bed, ate and drank on the back deck, and reminisced about our wonderful honeymoon – a perfect hot, summer night!