Introducing Poptails by FrutaPop

img_3772FrutaPOP is a small-batch, hand-crafted ice pop company, specializing in natural fruit and juice ice pops, coffee ice pops and alcohol infused ice pops better known as Poptails.

FrutaPOP offers seasonal flavors, making the POP a year-round treat and for the summer their featuring six tantalizing flavors that we are patiently waiting a chance to try, including Coconut Rosé Sangria POPs made with fresh blueberries and strawberries; Watermelon Mint Lemonade POPs made with premium vodka; Sparkling Prosecco POPs in mango mimosa and passion fruit; Tropical POPs in rum punch and pina colada; Red or White Coconut Sangria POPs made with top shelf alcohol, wine produced in New York State and organic fruit; and Passion Fruit Pink Champagne POPs which we can totally see as a champagne toast alternative for our summer brides.

At approximately $60 for a dozen, each pop costs about $10 each once you factor in the $35.00 flat-rate shipping fee.  All of the flavors are 5% alcohol by volume – which means you must be at least 21 years of age to enjoy them – and available in packs of 12, 24 and 48.  It also looks like you can mix and match your order so you can try all of them.

We haven’t yet had a chance to taste test these tasty treats but we’re hoping to do so soon and even have plans for a future event so stay tuned.  In the meantime, stop by FrutaPOP for a full list of their healthy frozen dessert options and to place an order for your upcoming event

Cupcake Bouquets & DIY Tutorial

When I first heard about the cupcake bouquet, I wasn’t too sure what to expect.  But a quick google search led me to this beautiful creation and I’m hooked!  There are endless ideas for this perfect marriage of flowers and cake and who doesn’t love anything that does double duty!

The “florist bakery” featured in the video is Baked Bouquet and they’re located in Verona, NJ. Their creations “offer customers a gift that is new and unique: baked cakes, truffles, ganache, and drizzled chocolate designed and arranged in the form of beautiful flower bouquets…made daily for pick-up and hand delivery”.

I don’t know if anyone is wondering, but I wouldn’t mind getting one of these in the mail tomorrow.

Check out their very mouth-watering website at http://www.bakedbouquet.com/.

Feeling adventurous and wanna try this at home?  Here’s a quick tutorial on how to recreate these beauties for yourself:

And as always, you know we wanna hear about your Cupcake Bouquet Experience so let us know!

Until further notice…celebrate everything!

 

Easy Party Appetizers: Goat Cheese Bruschetta

Photo credit: fakeginger.com

I love hosting a dinner party! Many people look at me with the side eye when I say it but I get a total kick out of setting up my home for an evening of good company, laughter and vino.  Dinner parties also afford me the opportunity to play around with food and drink recipes that I usually wouldn’t consider.  I recently hosted a girls night in and included on the menu were these tasty goat cheese bruschetta.  I found the recipe online (sorry, can’t recall the site) and after a trial and error batch I was well on my way to making what ended up as the most popular option on the menu.  Ahhh, success!!  Needless to say, it will now be a staple on the dinner party menu and if simple and easy recipes make you happy, I’m recommending this one for you!

Bruschetta with Goat Cheese, Figs and Honey

The Ingredients:

  • Half loaf (5 oz.) baguette, cut into ½ inch slices
  • 4 oz goat cheese
  • 2 ripe figs, diced
  • Clover honey to drizzle

The Raw Materials:

  • 1 Baking Sheet

The Instructions:

  • Preheat oven to 400°F
  • Place baguette slices in single layer on baking sheet.
  • Bake 8–10 minutes, turning each slice until both sides are crisp and golden around edges
  • Let cool
  • Spread cheese on toasted baguette slices.
  • Top with figs and lightly drizzle with honey.

You can substitute Crostini’s for the baguette.  Either way, this recipe is worry-free and easy enough to make for your next bridal or baby shower.  This recipe makes 13–15 slices.  Bon apetit!

9 Fun Cake Alternatives

Chocolate Chip Cookie and Marscapone

Included in my list of on-going projects is ‘cleaning up’ my Pinterest boards which is really just an exercise of removing duplicate pictures and appropriately categorizing “Likes”.  A word to the wise…do it from the outset because backtracking while constantly adding new pins can become daunting.

Anywho, in a related story – I recently signed up for Pinclout and it’s very useful in providing statistics based on your Pinterest activity.  One of those stats is a list of your top 10 popular boards based on likes and repins.

Included in my top 3 was one of my personal favorites – Elegant Cakes.  The board is really a collage of artistically tempting cakes for weddings and special events and if you have any sort of  sweet tooth you will not be able to view it without your mouth absolutely watering.

If you need inspiration for your wedding cake, the Elegant Cakes board is a good start.  And if you were looking for alternatives to traditional tiered yellow cake with elaborately decorated fondant icing, you may be in the market for one of the alternatives below.

Layered French Crepe Cake

Double Chocolate & Raspberry Pavlova

Lemon cookie and mascarpone cream cake

Popcorn cake

Wood Wedding Cake

Cocoa Candy Candy Marshmellows

Birthday Cake Martini

I wrote this recipe down a few months ago and recently featured it as the drink of the night for a girl’s night in.  The name was changed to ‘Tickled Pink’ but  it was still a huge hit and I highly recommend it for any event.  What’s better? You can easily swap out the vanilla vodka for an alcohol-free mocktail that is still delicious.  Cheers!

Ingredients

  • 1.5 ounces vanilla vodka
  • 1.5 ounces cranberry juice
  • 1/2 ounce champagne
  • Maraschino cherries (1 per glass)
  • Rim glass
  • Sprinkles

Directions:

Combine vodka and cranberry juice in an ice shaker, half-filled with ice cubes. Shake well. Strain into glass. Top with Champagne. Drop in cherry. Enjoy!

Strawberry Grilled Cheese Sandwiches

Though currently on hiatus, Cynthia Furey’s foodie blog, FureyandtheFeast, still features some of her most treasured dishes.  That’s where I found a recipe for Strawberry Grilled Cheese Sandwiches, a sweet variation of the all-american grilled cheese classic .  Brie takes the place of American cheddar cheese, balsamic strawberries sweeten the deal and angel food cake stands in for regular bread.  Now you know I’m all about cooking short cuts so save yourself some time and buy the angel food cake pre-made from your local supermarket – they’ll never know the difference.  Lol.

STRAWBERRY GRILLED CHEESE

The Ingredients

  • 1 pint strawberries
  • 2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 12 to 16 ounces brie cheese
  • 8 slices angel food cake, about 1/2-inch thick
  • 1/3 cup melted butter
  • Optional garnish: Powdered sugar, whipped cream

The Raw Materials

  • Medium bowl
  • Non-stick frying pan
  • Cutting board
  • Spatula

The Instructions

  • Rinse strawberries and pat dry, then slice in the halves or quarters, depending on size of strawberries. Place in a medium bowl with balsamic vinegar and sugar. Mix to coat, and set aside for 30 minutes, stirring once to redistribute syrup.
  • Slice rind off of brie. (This is a little tricky, given the brie can be gooey and hard to work with. Make sure the brie is chilled rather than room temperature, as will help a bit.) Once rind is removed, slice brie into 1/2-inch thick chunks.
  • Heat a nonstick frying pan over medium heat. Brush butter on one side of angel food cake slice, and position it butter-side down on a cutting board or other work surface. Arrange chunks of brie and a few balsamic strawberries on slice, then top with another slice of angel food cake, brushing the top with melted butter.
  • Grill sandwich in pan for about 3 to 4 minutes. Flip sandwich over, and use spatula to press down, to flatten slightly, so all ingredients meld together. Grill for an additional 3 to 4 minutes, or until slice is uniformly golden brown.
  • Cut each sandwich into two triangles, and serve warm with remaining balsamic strawberries. Garnish with powdered sugar and/or whipped cream, if desired.

Experiment with different fruits or serve a medley of fruit infused grilled cheese sandwiches at your next brunch, baby shower, or tea party.  Bon apetit!

Barbecue Sundaes

You know you’re on to something good when the words Barbecue and Sundae are included in the same sentence but let me warn you, this deliciousness is not for kitchen newbies.  Of course, that sort of applies to me but there’s absolutely no way these won’t be on the menu of my next summer soiree.  I just might be taking the short cut – ie, a trip to my local barbecue rib shack and supermarket – and recommend that you do the same if you’re short on time (Trust me, they’ll NEVER know the difference) but if you’re the more adventurous (also known as SHOW OFF) kitchen type, below are the recipes for pork, slaw, and beans as published on myrecipes.com

THE INGREDIENTS

Shredded Barbecue Pork Roast

  • 1 (6-pound) bone-in pork shoulder roast (Boston butt)
  • 1 cup Barbecue Rub
  • Hickory wood chunks
  • Apple juice

 

Barbecue Rub

  • 1 1/4 cups firmly packed dark brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup granulated garlic
  • 1/4 cup paprika
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon ground red pepper
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 1 tablespoon lemon pepper
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 2 teaspoons dry mustard
  • 2 teaspoons ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

 

Cole Slaw

  • 2 (10-ounce) packages finely shredded cabbage
  • 1 carrot, shredded
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup buttermilk
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons white vinegar

 

Baked Beans

  • 3 bacon slices
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 2 (16-ounce) cans pork and beans
  • 1/2 cup root beer (not diet)
  • 1/4 cup hickory-smoked barbecue sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
  • 1/8 teaspoon hot sauce

 

 

THE INSTRUCTIONS

Shredded Barbecue Pork Roast

  • Trim fat on pork shoulder roast to about 1/8 inch thick.
  • Sprinkle pork evenly with Barbecue Rub; rub thoroughly into meat. Wrap pork tightly with plastic wrap, and chill 8 hours.
  • Discard plastic wrap. Let pork stand at room temperature 1 hour.
  • Soak hickory chunks in water 1 hour.
  • Prepare smoker according to manufacturer’s instructions, bringing internal temperature to 225° to 250°; maintain temperature for 15 to 20 minutes.
  • Drain wood chunks, and place on coals. Place pork on lower cooking grate, fat side up.
  • Spritz pork with apple juice each time charcoal or wood chunks are added to the smoker.
  • Smoke pork roast, maintaining the temperature inside smoker between 225° and 250°, for 6 hours or until a meat thermometer inserted horizontally into thickest portion of pork registers 170°. Remove pork from smoker, and place on a sheet of heavy-duty aluminum foil; spritz with apple juice. Wrap tightly, and return to smoker, and smoke 2 hours or until thermometer inserted horizontally into the thickest portion of pork registers 190°. Remove pork from smoker, and let stand 15 minutes. Remove bone, and chop pork

Barbecue Rub

  • Combine all ingredients. Store in an airtight container.

 

Cole Slaw

  • Combine cabbage and carrot in a large bowl.
  • Whisk together sugar and next 7 ingredients until blended; toss with vegetables. Cover and chill at least 1 hour before serving

 

Baked Beans

  • Cook bacon in a skillet over medium heat until crisp; remove and drain on paper towels, reserving 2 tablespoons drippings in skillet. Crumble bacon.
  • Sauté diced onion in hot bacon drippings in skillet over high heat 5 minutes or until tender. Stir together onion, crumbled bacon, beans, and remaining ingredients in a lightly greased 1-quart baking dish.
  • Bake beans, uncovered, at 400° for 55 minutes or until sauce is thickened.

Divide 2 cups warm baked beans evenly among 4 Mason jars or large heat-proof cups; top each with 1/2 cup coleslaw, 1/4 pound warm shredded barbecued pork, and 1 to 2 tablespoons sauce.  Serve with dill pickle wedge, if desired.

Bon apetit!