Sunday, November 23, 2014

Homemade Cinnamon Hot Chocolate

Sometimes the most unexpected recipes are the best ones. Last night while watching Christmas movies (I know, it's not even thanksgiving) I began craving hot chocolate. 

You don't need fancy cocoa powder to make a deliciously rich hot chocolate. All you need are four simple ingredients: milk, chocolate, brown sugar, and cinnamon sugar. 

Boil the milk and brown sugar on low. Once the milk comes to a boil add the chocolate. You are going to want to add about two ounces of chocolate per cup of milk. Whisk in some cinnamon sugar with the chocolate.

Garnish your glass with more cinnamon, or a candy cane to be really festive. 

This is a recipe that I am going to be using all season long. 

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Saturday Caturday, Thankful Edition

One of my favorite days of the year is fast approaching. In the spirit of the holiday I want to share with you my list of what I am thankful for this year. This has been a big year for me, and I have so much to be thankful for. 

1. I have to start off my list with the special guy these Saturday posts are dedicated to. Little George is one of the most amazing things to come into my life. He is so lovable, and always makes us laugh. It was by pure luck that I saw him posted on petfinder by a shelter in Massachusetts. James went not expecting anything, but once he saw this little guy there was no leaving without him. I can not picture our lives without him now. 

2. About seven months ago I moved into my first apartment with my boyfriend, and it is the best decision I could have made. I love this house, and being able to live with my best friend. I also love having a place that is all mine, that we can customize to fit our personalities. 

3. I can not list the two things above without mentioning my amazing boyfriend. He is so supportive and loving, and I could not picture my life without him. 

4. This past month I have been fortunate to take a huge step in my career. I could not be more thankful to the people who believed in me, and felt that I was ready for this next step. 

5. I can not end this post without thanking you, my readers. Whether you are friends, family members, or people who have connected with me through this blog in some way, I say thank you. It is because of you that I create the content for my blog, and I look forward to continuing to evolve it. 

Thanksgiving is the perfect time to look back at all of the things that have happened in the past year. I must say, I think this has been my best year yet, and for that I am truly thankful. 

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

DIY Pot Rack

Today I have for you the easiest kitchen DIY project. 
For the past two weekends James and I have been frequenting Home Depot quite a lot. We have slowly begun some projects to transform our apartment into a home. My boyfriend has always dreamed of an industrial style kitchen, while I go for a more traditional look. With this DIY project we were able to combine our two styles to create one cohesive piece. We are both ecstatic with how it turned out. 

All you need is a piece of plywood, sandpaper, wood stain, two anchors, two long nails, and some hooks. We bought all of this at the hardware store for $20 dollars. We had the store cut our piece of plywood to our desired length for free. 

First off we had to sand the piece of plywood until smooth. Then with a light grey stain (to match the shelf we put in last weekend) we stained the wood. We put on about three coats of the stain to add some color without covering the beautiful natural grain of the wood. Next we used a drill to place the holes for the hooks in the wood about a couple inches apart. We then secured the gold hooks in their place.

 After that was done, we placed the anchors into the wall, and drilled the nails through the board into the anchor. The anchors help to secure the rack to the wall as well as hold the weight of the pots. 

This was a fast DIY project that has really transformed the room. It is both decorative and functional, just like every great kitchen DIY should be. 

A full kitchen tour is coming your way soon!

xo. Casey

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Spicy Dijon Hollandaise Sauce

Brunch is my favorite meal of the day, and what makes it my favorite is one specific dish, eggs benedict. Traditional eggs benedict consists of four key ingredients: an english muffin, poached egg, Canadian bacon, and hollandaise sauce. The star of this dish is also the most daunting. If heated too much your sauce can quickly go from nice and smooth to scrambled eggs. 

I am here to teach you an easy no fail Hollandaise recipe to impress your family, friends, or significant other. This recipe serves two. 

What you will need: 
four egg yolks
four ounces melted butter
one tablespoon lemon juice 
one teaspoon Teaspoon Siracha
one teaspoon Tabasco
one Tablespoon Dijon
salt and pepper to taste

Boil your water in a small pot. In a metal bowl (over the small pot of boiling water, creating a double broiler) add the butter and leave on heat until melted. Set butter aside. Add the four egg yolks to the bowl (reserve the whites for another recipe), then add lemon juice. Whisk the two together over heat in ten second increments - ten seconds over the heat and ten seconds off until the yolks develop a creamy consistency. 

Once the yolks are thick enough to coat the back of a spoon, remove from the heat and slowly whisk in the melted butter. Whisk vigorously until the butter and yolk mixture is completely combined.

Then add your siracha, tabasco, dijon, and salt & pepper to taste. 
This is where you can totally customize your Hollandaise to fit whatever your preference. You can add herbs, orange juice, etc. to make it completely your own. 

Top your beautifully poached eggs with the Hollandaise and enjoy. My boyfriend has been making this dish for breakfast every Sunday for the past couple of weeks - he truly makes the most perfect poached eggs. I am one lucky girl. 

xo. Casey

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Saturday Caturday

I have to say I have such a greater appreciation for lazy Saturdays since starting my job. With such busy and exciting weeks, there is nothing I get excited for more than spending my Saturdays relaxing around the house with a cup of coffee, catching up on all my favorite shows, blogs, and youtube videos. 

We have also started to really start transforming our apartment into a real home. We have fallen in love with this place. We have such an amazing landlord, and it is very affordable. We know that we will be staying here for the year(s) to come, and so we are really creating a permanent home here. With that comes adding some new additions to our walls, cooking more, and really building up our home essentials. 

With that said my second installment of my "From apartment to Home" series will be coming soon, and by the picture above I think you can tell what it will be! 
Until then, I hope you have a very restful Saturday, and I will see you back here tomorrow with a yummy new recipe. 

xo. Casey

Friday, November 14, 2014

Friday Five, Thanksgiving Favorites

Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays, and since it is fast approaching I wanted to share with you some of my favorite Thanksgiving Recipes to get your prepared for the holiday! Last Thanksgiving my cousin and I were in Rhode Island on our own since we both had to work next day, so we had our first annual Cousin Thanksgiving. 

We cooked a lot of food - and it was amazing! This year however, I am going home to New Jersey to be with my family and I am letting my mom do all the cooking. Because really, nothing is better than a home cooked meal from your mom. 

Here are some of my favorite Thanksgiving Recipes, and where to find them. 

1. Broccoli Quinoa Casserole from Fit Foodie Finds
Oh the casserole, a Thanksgiving must have. 

2. Bacon and Bourbon Stuffing from ABeautifulMess
Emma over at abeautifulmess can do no wrong with her amazing recipes, but this one seriously takes the cake. 

3. Brown Butter Mashed Potatoes from How Sweet It Is
Because what isn't better with brown butter? 

4. Pepperjack Green Bean Casserole from ABeautifulMess
Because you need more than once casserole at thanksgiving 

5. Yam Pudding with Bacon Streusel from The Kitchy Kitchen
I am telling you right now, you need more bacon at your Thanksgiving 

I hope you all get some inspiration from these recipes. These are some of my favorite bloggers that I have been following for a long time and their recipes are sure to be a hit at your Thanksgiving Dinner this year whether you are with family, friends, or just your cousin.

Cheers, Casey

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Saturday Caturday; Exciting News

Hi There Blogging Friends!

The past month has been a crazy one to say the least! 
Things in my work life have been changing, and some really exciting things have been happening. This has also contributed to the lack of posts in the last month, but my favorite season is approaching and I have tons of new content for you guys coming soon!

So on to the good stuff!

First off, I have recently been promoted to Event Manager of the Hotel that I work at. Like, what!? My first weekend as Event Manager I had an awesome weekend working with the Denver Broncos; it just doesn't get any cooler than that my friends! I have been adjusting to my new hours, my awesome new office (which I will share on the blog soon!), and heavier work load. I absolutely love it and could not be more excited about this opportunity! 

Second, it was announced that I have won the RI Hospitality Hotel Employee of the Year award! I can not thank you all enough - my family, my friends, my co workers, my boyfriend, for believing in me. I was in complete shock when they announced it, and I could not be more excited for all of the exciting things that have been happening. 
Believe in yourselves my friends - amazing things happen when you least expect it.

xo. Casey