Tuesday, December 14, 2010

8 bottles of wine later...

Just a quick post stemming from a great week of food-and especially wine! It didn't seem like much as I was in the middle of it, enjoying it all; but it happened regardless. As Pat and I prepared for our Christmas trip to New Jersey, Pat piled in the wine bottles that had been stacked along the counter. (unasked might I add!) 1 week-8 bottles-lots of fun! It was pretty hilarious when I saw all of the bottles, especially since I know I drank a good amount of it; which of course led me to this post.

How it broke down:

Monday: Baked orzo, peas, and mushrooms, with an Australian Pinot Grigio: Yellowtail

Tuesday: Chicken and white bean (oops red bean since forgot the white at the store!) Chili, with another Australian Syrah: Yellowtail (can't beat a good deal at the store!)

Wednesday: day off from cooking (attended a Christmas dinner with a neighbor)

Thursday: great Rachel Ray recipe: Gnocchi with Sirloin, with Sauvignon Blanc: Yellowtail

Friday: left-overs! plus movie date =)

Saturday: Early Christmas dinner (see previous post) BEST WINE OF THE WEEK! Thanks to Dad: St. Supery red (don't remember type), Rutherford Hill Blend, Plus another red for cards (another no-name great deal at local store), and a great white wine: Ledger Wineries (I think!) this was our "while cooking wine."

Sunday: Girl Scout Christmas dinner for Amy, In-n-Out for Pat =)

Monday: first try at Risotto...loved it!!! with my first "BevMo" purchase...Rodney Strong Sauvignon Blanc

Needless to say, we had a great week of food, fun, and wine! Cheers!

Monday, December 13, 2010

An early California Christmas

This year Pat and I are spending the holidays in New Jersey with his family, but I just can't go without decorating our house. Even though we will miss almost two weeks of December in California, I still wanted to share in the holidays with my family. So, we brought out our decorations (and maybe a little of Sara's and G-ma's) and decorated. I love holiday decorations and I have to go all out. Since we were only in a small apartment last year, we didn't have too many decorations to fill up an entire house.

My solution: I just decorated the dining room/entry way so my things weren't spread too thin! We couldn't decorate the front half of the house (for reasons beyond our control) so our Christmas tree had to go in the dining room this year. Thankfully, most of the items we purchased last year worked in our new home and we now have a very Christmas-y entry. I absolutely love it and can't wait until next year when I will hopefully be able to spend a little more money to spread the holiday cheer into our family room and kitchen!

Of course, decorating isn't as fun if you know there won't be a lot of time to enjoy it, so I decided to host an early Christmas dinner with my parents and sister. So, 2 weeks before the big day, they came over for some good food, Christmas music, a walk through the neighborhood to see the lights, and to see our decorations on display.

On the menu:
Prime rib
Potato and parsnip gratin
roasted brussel sprouts with caramelized onions
Gingerbread cupcakes with eggnog frosting and apple streusel cupcakes! (this one thanks to my sister!)

What a great meal and a fun time with the family!

Playing a little rock band Beatles while the Prime rib was cooking...

A couple views of the table

Merry Christmas everyone!!