Let’s go pink for Valentine’s Day, ok? As a kid, I remember making homemade Valentines with my mom. This year, we BAKED homemade Valentines together. Last weekend my mama came for a visit and we spent nearly 24 hours in our aprons baking pink desserts. 24 hours might be an exaggeration, but between burning a batch of lollipops and a few dozen cookies, and heading to the store at 10pm to pick up an oven thermometer, things took a bit longer than expected. Our first pink v-day treat? Homemade pink velvet sprinkles! The flavor of red velvet with a pink hue. If you’re looking for the perfect easy-to-make homemade Valentine to give someone special, wrap up a handful of these pink dots with ribbon and a note. You’re the sprinkles on my ice cream.
Ice Cream >>>
There was a time when “suicide” was my fountain soda of choice. Because who doesn’t love Pepsi, Sprite, Fanta, Dr. Pepper and A&W Root Beer swirled into one? Heck, while you’re at it, toss in some over-sweetened pink lemonade and iced tea to really mix things up. At some point, though, your taste buds mature. Either that or it becomes less socially acceptable to walk up to the self-serve and fill your cup with 1/10th of each option. And on that day, you are forced to choose one over all the rest. For me, root beer was the clear leader of the pack. Rich and creamy with a hint of vanilla.
Now that we’ve moved into our new digs, there are nights when we just have to drive 25 minutes and have to wait another 25 minutes in line @ our favorite ice cream joint just to get a scoop of whoknowswhat. The menu changes each time we go, but it always, ALWAYS hits the spot. One reason my husband and I are together is because he also finds it totally normal that when the sign says, “please limit yourself to 2-3 tastings each,” we both pick our favorite three and share. Why would you want a full taste of three unique flavors when you could have SIX half-tastes? The same principle applies whenever we eat out. Beyond the brilliant why-didn’t-I-think-of-that menu options, the reason Ici has become our go-to spot is because somehow someway they figured out how to make ice cream melt in your mouth with each smooth bite, without being way too heavy on the cream that you then leave feeling bloated. That time Lucas accidentally ordered two gigantic scoops didn’t leave us with an uggghhh-dairy-hates-me stomach ache. I never regret a scoop.
Although you wouldn’t know it by the breezy Bay Area weather, July is here! Which can only mean one thing: I scream, you scream, we all scream for ice cream! I’m seriously screaming for ice cream. As a kid, I had super human hearing when it came to the ice cream truck melody. Growing up in the country means that the ice cream man rarely treks out to your neighborhood, so when he does, you better not miss it. Empty out the piggy bank for spare change and run barefoot down the street chasing him!
Happy (early) St. Patrick’s Day! I’ve always been a sucker for this green holiday because my birthday is the day after. When asked my favorite color, I still say green, even though I think anyone who has seen my apartment could tell you that I clearly prefer purple. Most of my birthday parties growing up involved some sort of green theme, and clovers always made an appearance. Now, I typically spend St. Patrick’s Day at a less-frequented spot celebrating with all my friends because having your birthday party on a day when almost every twenty-something is also out at the bars makes it difficult to gather a large group in one place. I spent my first two legal drinking birthdays with all my pals at a sushi bar in Hollywood singing karaoke. This year promises to be much more mellow, but none less fun – we’re heading up to Tahoe with a group of Lucas’s college buddies (and there should finally be some snow!). I will be wearing green on slopes, even if it clashes with my winter attire. No matter how old I turn, St. Patrick’s Day’s emerald hue will always have a special place in my heart.
I recently read a blog by a woman whose philosophy on food was that she only eats what she wants, which turns out to be mostly raw and vegan. I thought about this notion and came to the conclusion that if I only ate what I want, I would weigh a million pounds. I want sweets. All sweets, all the time. I don’t know that I’ve ever reached a point where I had eaten too many sweets. I could eat dessert three meals a day and be totally satisfied (and malnourished). Rather than stuffing my face with sugary processed ice cream, tonight I made myself some banana’s only ice cream. Well, it was banana’s only until I had the even-more brilliant idea of swirling in the leftover caramel from my apple pie puffs. Now I call it “two ingredient banana caramel swirl ice cream,” which might be a slight misnomer because, in fact, I used more than one ingredient to make the caramel (but you should have some leftover from making the apple pie puffs too, right? You did make the apple pie puffs, didn’t you?). The best part is that this ice cream is so very easy to make that it’ll blow your mind – you don’t even need an ice cream maker (an ice cream maker attachment is added to the list of kitchen gadgets I dream of owning).