I put together a baby shower for my friend Elena and her husband LF. While I wanted to use blue as the color theme, seeing as they’re having a boy, I wasn’t able to get enough blue flowers so I chose to add in some purple. I was also very excited about the cabbages they had, they reminded me about Peter the Rabbit…I think that’s the story where the rabbits hang out in the farmers cabbage garden. So my flower colors were blue, green, purples, yellow, and white.
Kids were welcome at this baby shower and so I made my menu up with kids in mind. My menu consisted of dishes that would fill up all the adults and at the same time would appeal to children.
|Name suggestion and well-wishes tree.|
|LF & Elena with Elena’s mother and aunt who
came all the way from Monterrey, Mexico!
Cheese & Ham Swirls
1 tablespoon water
1 sheet frozen puff pastry, thawed (1/2 of 17 1/4-oz. pkg.)
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese, divided
1/4 tablespoon ground red pepper (cayenne)
8 slices Shaved Smoked or Brown Sugar Ham
Directions: Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Beat egg and water until blended. Unfold pastry on lightly floured surface. Roll into a 14×10 in rectangle. Cut in half lengthwise. Brush both pastry halves lightly with some of the egg mixture.
Sprinkle 3 tablespoons of the cheese and some pepper evenly over one of the pastry pieces. Cover with ham slices. Place remaining pastry piece, egg side down, over ham. Roll gently with rolling pin to seal. Brush with additional egg mixture.
I found this next recipe on Marthestewart.com.
Asparagus Gruyere Tart
Flour for work surface
1 sheet frozen puff pastry
2 cups Gruyere cheese, shredded
1 1/2 pounds medium or thick asparagus
1 tablespoon olive oil
Salt & Pepper
Directions: Preheat oven to 400 degrees. On a floured surface, roll out puff pastry into a 16×10 inch rectangle. Fold in edges to make them thicker. Place pastry on a floured baking sheet. Back puff pastry until golden brown, about 15 minutes. Keep and eye on the middle of the pastry as it will start to rise up and you can just poke it with a fork to pop the bubble.
Remove pastry shell from oven and sprinkle over with the Gruyere cheese. Trim the bottom of the asparagus spears to fit crosswise inside the tart shell. Arrange the asparagus spears in a single layer over the Gruyere alternating ends and tips. Brush lightly with oil and season with salt and pepper. Bake until spears are tender, about 20-25 minutes.
These meatballs were a big hit. The original recipe from disneyfamily.com used turkey for the meat. I made them with turkey in the past and they were delicious, but wanted to try them out with beef, and they were just as good…if not better. The meatballs come with this wonderful sweet soy dipping sauce that tastefully pairs with the cilantro.
Chinese-Style Beef Meatballs
1 pound ground beef
2 scallions, very finely chopped
1/2 cup very finely chopped cilantro
1 tablespoon sesame oil
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
2 tablespoon soy sauce, 3 if you use the low sodium soy sauce
1/2 cup fine, dry bread crumbs
1 egg, lightly beaten
***I added 2 medium carrots, finely shredded and 1 tablespoon black and white sesame seeds
Sweet Soy Sauce:
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup soy sauce
1 tablespoon rice vinegar
2 or 3 slices fresh ginger, instead of slicing the ginger I minced it and used double the amt. the ginger is key to the taste of this sauce
Directions: Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Mix together all the ingredients for the meatballs using your hands. Then form meatballs by rolling tablespoon sized scoops between your palms. Arrange on a lightly oiled cookie sheet and bake for 20-25 minutes, until well-browned and cooked through. They can be served with toothpicks for dipping or the way I did was pour the sauce over the meatballs and serve the meatballs in the sauce (this way will require that you make more sauce, about double).
To make the dipping sauce: In a small pot, stir all the ingredients together over medium -low heat until the sugar dissolves. Simmer for 3 or so minutes , stirring frequently until the sauce thickens a bit. Fish out any pieces of ginger and serve sauce over the meatballs or on the side for dipping.
Adobo Chicken with Ginger
The recipe for this dish can be found in this previous post. I chose to go with adobo chicken because it is such an unpolarized dish. The only change that I made to the recipe this time around was to add carrots into the sauce as it was reducing once I took the chicken out. I served the chicken with Jasmine rice and the sauce.
6 large sweet potatoes
1/4 cup olive oil
Salt & Pepper to taste
Directions: Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Peel and cut sweet potato into strips. In a large bowl mix them well with olive oil, salt, and pepper until evenly distributed. Lay out sweet potato strips on a wire cooling rack and place into oven. I used the wire cooling rack in order for the sweet potato to be baked evenly all around and not just on top. If you used a regular baking pan, make sure to flip the potatoes half way through so they could crisp evenly. Bake for about 20-25 minutes.
|I forgot to take a photo of mine so I used the photo from
kraftfoods.com where the recipe came from.
Rice Krispie Cupcakes with Almond Frosting
3 tablespoons butter
1 package regular marshmallows (10 oz.)
6 cups Rice Krispies
1/2 cup butter
1 teaspoon almond extract
2 cups sifted powdered sugar
3 tablespoons milk
Blue food coloring (add a few drops at a time and mix in between until desired color is achieved)
Directions: In a large sauce pan melt butter over low heat. Add marshmallows and stir until completely melted. Remove from heat. Add cereal and stir until well coated. Press cereal firmly into well greased cupcake tine, filling each tin completely. Let cool for 15 minutes. Meanwhile, in a small mixing bowl beat butter with an electric mixer on medium speed until fluffy. Beat in almond extract. Alternately add powdered sugar and milk beating until smooth an easy to spread. To tint, stir in a few drops of food coloring at a time mixing in between until desired color is achieved. Frost the Rice Krispie cupcakes and serve at room temperature or cold.
I got this recipe from my sister Olya. These blondies are so fantastic it is truly hard to stop yourself from reaching for another one.
Chocolate Chunk Almond Blondies
1 1/4 cups firmly packed brown sugar
1 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup sugar
2 tablespoons light corn syrup I used a light colored honey
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 1/4 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup chocolate chunk baking chips
1 cup plain toffee bits
1/2 cup sliced almonds
Directions: Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Combine brown sugar, butter, and sugar in a large bowl. Beat at medium speed until creamy. Add eggs, honey, and vanilla extract. Continue beating and scraping the bowl occasionally until everything is well mixed. Stir in flour baking powder and salt until well mixed. Stir in chocolate chunks and 1/2 cup toffee bits.
Spread batter into greased 13×9 inch baking pan. Sprinkle with almonds and remaining toffee bits, pressing down slightly.
Bake for 23-30 minutes or until golden brown and toothpick inserted comes out clean. Cool completely and serve.