Friday, February 18, 2011

delicious dinner party and a heaping spoonful of confidence ;)

fabulous company (my belles jen and maria and their hubbies and kiddos) 
+ fabulouso food and wine = awesomeness.

jen, mike and miss nora - thank you sooo much for hosting a delicious evening! you rock.
maria, scott, and baby scarlett: always love some quality time with you. 

the pics:

(oh baby scarlett - how i love you!)

(precious nora belle - gorgeous!)

(recipe for this photo: ISO 250; f/2.0, s 1/60, 50mm w/ flash, one fork full of delicious apple tart, one impatient baby with bubbles on the brain)

 (another play date soon is a must!)

(i am calling this photo "diva in jammies" - love it)

(the belles - me, maria, jen. love you ladies!)

the food:


mini caprese salad skewers

  • 1  pt. grape tomatoes, halved
  • 10  to 14 fresh small mozzarella cheese balls, cut into thirds*
  • 32  (4-inch) wooden skewers**
  • 1/4  cup  extra virgin olive oil
  • 2  tablespoons  balsamic vinegar
  • 1/4  teaspoon  kosher salt
  • 1/4  teaspoon  pepper
  • 6  thinly sliced fresh basil leaves
  • Kosher salt and pepper to taste

1. Thread 1 tomato half, 1 piece of cheese, and another tomato half onto each skewer. 
Place skewers in a shallow serving dish.
2. Whisk together oil and next 3 ingredients. Drizzle oil mixture over skewers; 
sprinkle with basil and salt and pepper to taste.
*1 (8-oz.) package fresh mozzarella, cut into 1/2-inch cubes, may be substituted.
**Wooden picks may be substituted.
beef tenderloin cocktail sandwiches with flavored butters:
see recipe here.

 sorry. no salad recipe today. sadly, maria indicates that her yummy spinach salad recipe is top secret. this is fine with me as long as she promises to bring it to the next dinner party. delish!

jen made great use of her ina garten/barefoot contessa cookbook with these delicious recipes:
herb-roasted salmon
1 large (2 to 2 1/2 pound) salmon fillet, bones and skin removed 

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper 
1/4 cup good olive oil 
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice 
5 scallions, white and green parts, minced 
1/2 cup minced fresh dill 
1/2 cup minced fresh parsley 
1/4 cup dry white wine 
Lemon wedges, for serving 

1. Place the salmon fillet in a nonreactive roasting dish and season it generously with salt and pepper. Whisk together the olive oil and lemon juice and drizzle the mixture evenly over the salmon. Let it stand at room temperature to marinate for 15 minutes. 

2. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. 

3. In a bowl, stir together the scallions, dill, and parsley. Scatter the herb mixture over the salmon fillet, turning it so that both sides become generously coated with the green herbs. Pour the wine over and around the fish fillet. 

4. Roast the salmon for 10 to 12 minutes, until almost cooked in the center at the thickest part. Remove from the oven and cover tightly with aluminum foil. Allow to rest for 10 minutes. Cut the salmon across into serving pieces and serve hot with lemon wedges.

wild mushroom risotto
see recipe here.

dessert (omg soooo yummy)!
french apple tart. (recipe here).

thanks again jen, mike and nora for hosting a totally rad dinner party! xoxox

boost of confidence today:
i was very fortunate to be invited to join a conference call this morning with me ra koh (oober talented photographer and one of my most favorite ladies on the planet) and karen buckley, beautiful and inspiring business coach with wisdom connection. this call was all about boosting confidence and encouragement in women starting and/or running a business. it was amazing. what a delightful way to spend an hour. what a fantastic group of women - all supporting each other in their passion for photography
 (and family and friends and business).

my favorite tip i am taking away from this call:

'valuing yourself and your dreams will teach your children to value themselves too.'

  one of the questions that karen asked all of us to ponder:  
"jump ahead to december 31, 2011 and pretend you are looking back on this year. tell me one step that you could take this year that would make you feel fulfilled in yourself and your business... a step you could take that would make you feel really really good about yourself"?

hmmm.? i am going to "think on" that one for a bit. what would your one step be?



"Practice random acts of awesome" - spotted on a bumper sticker on our trip up the oregon coast last year. i am adopting this phrase as my business motto because i love it so.

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