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Hi Circle! It’s been awhile! So…I just finished grad school a few weeks ago (woot), which meant ending yet another clinical placement, which meant coming up with yet another ‘thoughtful-yet-subtle-yet-creative-yet-cheap’ staff thank-you gift to bring in on my last day at said clinical site. I’m actually in the process of accepting a job at this office, so the stakes were a little higher this time – cookies or muffins just wouldn’t cut it. Solution: TRUFFLES! Problem: Truffles = exotic and scary and time-consuming (right?). False. Once again Google pulls through. These are the easiest thing ever…divine…and they look so elegant and taste so much like ‘real’ truffles.

I put them in cute little boxes for people at the office to take. Apparently they were a huge hit, and now I fear that I’ve raised the bar a little too high for myself….gulp. Little do they know…this is about as fancy as it gets for me.

Easy Decadent Truffles (http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/easy-decadent-truffles/Detail.aspx)

1 (8 oz) pkg cream cheese, softened

3 cups confectioners’ sugar

3 cups chocolate chips (I used Hershey’s Special Dark), melted

1 1/2 tsp vanilla

In a large bowl, beat cream cheese until smooth. Gradually beat in confectioners’ sugar until well blended. Stir in melted chocolate and vanilla until no streaks remain. Refrigerate for about 30 min-1hr. (until it’s still pliable but no longer mushy and sticky). Shape into 1 inch balls and roll in whatever you please – like nuts or other fun things (I used chocolate sprinkles, coconut, and cocoa powder).

If I was really feeling saucy, I would have flavored them with different liqueurs like raspberry, orange, etc. Maybe someday when I feel rich.

Little darlings.

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Making this tonite! Happy 2011 everyone!

Ingredients:
1 (12 ounce) can apricot-mango nectar
1 (12 ounce) can pineapple juice
3/4 cup cold water
1 (6 ounce) can frozen orange juice concentrate, thawed and undiluted
1 (750 milliliter) bottle cold champagne

Directions:
Stir together apricot nectar, pineapple juice, water, and orange juice concentrate in a large pitcher until combined.

Pour in bottle of sparkling wine just before serving.

Make a resolution, kiss your friends and tip it back!

Recipe from here.

Have you ever seen this? What have I been missing?

half way done

 

Take a fork and stab holes all over an orange or grapefruit.

Fill holes with whole cloves.

Sit it somewhere that needs a wonderful scent to warm the atmosphere.

It can dry out, no problem.

I’m glad this recipe blog idea stuck. That’s all. Cheers to good food.

“Great food is like great sex.  The more you have the more you want.” 

~Gael Greene

May our lives be full of great things!

I noted our friend J.Boodie is supposedly on Oprah today, celebrating the 10 year anniversary of O Magazine – where he works. This lead me to Oprah.com…which lead me to a list of Oprah’s 10 favorite recipes from the past 10 years.

Here are my favorites of Oprah’s favorites:)

Hudson Valley Club Sandwich

Maya Angelou’s Banana Pudding (of course)

Cornmeal Crust Pizza with Greens and Ricotta

Pappardelle with Peas and Parmesan

And here is one that is not a favorite – but i’ve had it at Gigi’s restaurant in the Hudson Valley and it is phenomenal!  Gigi “Skizza” with Arugula Pesto, Ricotta, and Chicken

And we of course must add some of Oprah’s favorite quotes while we are at it:

“Be daring, be different, be anything that will assert integrity of purpose and imaginative vision against the play-it-safers…” — Cecil Beaton, photographer

“That’s what I consider true generosity. You give your all, and yet you always feel as if it costs you nothing.” —Simone de Beauvoir, philosopher

“Everyone has the power for greatness, not for fame, but greatness, because greatness is determined by service.” —Martin Luther King Jr., civil rights leader and Nobel Peace Prize recipient

And one for Kim!

“I’ve always known that life is better when you share it. I now realize it gets even sweeter when you expand the circle.” —Oprah


It’s not that I’m in  love with Oprah – but she will always be a special landmark in my history – she was of course, the outlet in which my mother chose to tell me that I have another sister living somewhere in Pennsylvania. Maybe we will get on the show one day for this:) Joyshop and Oprah holding hands and making plans – bah!

So I am slightly tempted to try the terrible American catastrophe by KFC – i mean, i like to try everything. So instead i’ve been browsing for delicious looking things that won’t kill me in a day. Stumbled across this site that has a million recipes i want to try RIGHT NOW.

and they are all taking our bodies in mind – a good alternative to the new KFC killer.

SALAD:

Sesame Tamari Vinagrette

Raspberry Avocado and Mango Salad

Balsalmic Port Drizzle

Fennel & Orange Salad with Toasted Pistachios

Tangy Green Goddess Dressing

Romaine Salad with Orange, Feta & Beans

Whole-Wheat Skillet Croutons

Sugar Snap Pea & Barley Salad

Curried Tofu Salad –  I mean – this could be good:)

SIDES:

Herbed Corn & Edamame Succotash

Broccoli with Black Bean-Garlic Sauce

Sesame Roasted Mushrooms and Scallions

Herbed Potato Bread

Celeriac & Parsnip Mash

Mary’s Zucchini with Parmesan

Asparagus with Anchovies & Garlic

Avocado & Corn Salsa

ENTRÉE:

Cream Cheese-&-Pesto-Stuffed Chicken Breasts

Pomegranate-Glazed Turkey with Roasted Fennel

Elise’s Sesame Noodles

Cornmeal-Crusted Chicken with Pepian Sauce

Squash-Topped Cottage Pies

Plank-Grilled Sweet Soy Salmon

Peanut Noodles with Shredded Chicken and Vegetables

Mustard-Maple Pork Tenderloin

Fresh Pomodoro Pasta with White Beans and Olives

Roast Chicken Dal

Creamy Garlic Pasta with Shrimp and Vegetables

Portobello & Beef Patty Melt

Curried Chicken Pitas

Chile & Beer Braised Brisket

Gorgonzola & Prune Stuffed Chicken

Tomato Phyllo Tart

Loaded Twice-Baked Potatoes

Tuscan Pork Loin

Tijuana Torta

Oven-Fried Chicken

Grilled Steak with Beets & Radicchio

Basmati Rice & Curry Casserole (Chana aur Sarson ka Saag Biryani)

Peanut Tofu Wrap (what’s my deal with tofu? i rarely even like it!)

And for dessert:

Rhubarb-Vanilla Compote

Frozen Horchata

Mini Molten Chocolate Cakes with Mocha Sauce

Chocolate Cherry and Almond Bread Pudding

Dried Fruit Compote with Green Tea & Lemon

Bev’s Chocolate Chip Cookies

Watermelon-Yogurt Ice

Chocolate Truffle Cheesecake

Strawberry Cream

‘Cocoa-Nut’ Bananas

Grilled Chocolate Sandwich??

I was exploring this new blog I found: http://www.hostessblog.com/ and discovered a lot of fun things. I always love presentation, surprise and unexpected touches – making food a creative or fun experience. If only we had the time…

Here are a few favorites – post if you try these!

A hanging cupcake tower (anyone want to make this for the wedding??:)

Hummus in a teacup!

Rainbow cake! Recipe here: http://www.omnomicon.com/rainbowcake

I’ve recently tried coloring my pancakes. Blue are my favorite to eat. I’ll post that adventure later!