Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Strawberry Pistachio Tart Recipe

With the last days of Summer (and strawberries), I thought I'd bake something with strawberries!  I received this tart pan for my birthday and I have only used it once! So I have been dying to dig it out again for *something* and with strawberries on the brain, I began dreaming of strawberry pistachio tarts and voilĂ ! Here we are.
What I love about baking tarts is that they come out looking fancy and beautiful and they really aren't THAT HARD to make. 
So what I'm saying, if you have guests, you can impress them with a tart.

Plus, a fruit tart is a nice refreshing dessert. It isn't too heavy like cakes but is fancier than a cookie!

Strawberry Pistachio Tart Recipe
printable version HERE
recipe adapted from epicurious

Ingredients
1 pre-made pie crust
8 ounces cream cheese, softened
1/3 cup ground pistachios
1/4 cup honey
1 cup heavy whipped cream
1/4 cup powdered sugar
1 pint strawberries, washed, dried, with stems removed and diced in half vertically
1/2 cup chopped pistachios

Directions
1. Preheat oven to 410 degrees F. Take your pre-made pie crust and roll it out onto the counter.  Place the pie crust over the tart pan (my tart pan is 9") and then gently push the pie crust into the tart pan mold.
2. Using a fork, poke several holes into the pie crust on the bottom of the tart pan to allow steam to escape.
3. Bake tart crust for approximately 13-15 minutes until lightly browned and then set aside to cool to room temperature.
4. Using a mixer, whip the cream cheese, ground pistachios, and honey until well combined and set aside.
5. In a different bowl, whip the heavy cream with the powdered sugar until you have whipped cream (or you can use one of these awesome tools  to make your whipped cream!)
6. In the cooled tart shell, spread the pistachio cream evenly.  Then spread a layer of whipped cream. Arrange the cut strawberries with the tips pointing up, in a circle starting on the outside first.
7. Sprinkle the tart with chopped pistachios and serve immediately.

You don't have to use a pre-made pie crust to make your tart shell.  I was just too lazy to make my own. If you want to make your own from scratch, this is the recipe I ALWAYS use. For those that are curious,this is the tart pan I used.
So really, this tart is easy to make especially if you use pre-made pie crust. I used the ones from Trader Joe's and it is pretty good.

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Sunday, August 28, 2016

Fall Home Decor Favorites 2016

I have rounded up a few of my favorite picks for Fall home decor this year.  I know it is a *wee* bit early but as you know cute things do sell out!  I've created a few categories.  For the living room, outdoors, on the table, metallic accents, and faux greenery.  I had so much fun putting this together! 


For the Living Room...
Plaid blanket- I LOVE Pendleton blankets. I have a problem with them.  You can use this Pendleton lambswool on the couch, on your bed, as a tablecloth, or outside for pretty blog stylized pictures!
Pillows - We all love to change up our home decor with seasonal pillows. I am loving this Wheat Pillow as well as this watercolor pumpkin patch pillow.

For the Outdoors...
Olive Bucket - I could see a pretty Olive bucket with seasonal faux (or real!) branches spilling out. 
Wheelbarrow - I LOVE this Wheelbarrow Planter - you could put it on your front porch or table and put tons of pumpkins inside. Wouldn't it look cute?

On the Table...
Pumpkin Mugs - Aren't these pumpkin mugs so cute to sip some pumpkin spice latte or hot apple cider from? 
Pumpkin Bowls - I own these pumpkin cocottes  and I use them all Fall long! I serve my pumpkin soup in them and it makes it extra special! This year Staub came out with the pumpkin cocottes in white (already sold out online on WS, keep checking back, but I found Sur La Table also has little white pumpkins as does Bed Bath & Beyond.  Those retailers also have the large pumpkin. Macy's has the large pumpkin too but not at a discount.)  Staub came out with a large cast iron white pumpkin new this year too - I own it already in orange
Fall plates -aren't these seasonal Fall Leaves plates just perfect? I love the colors!
Seasonal Centerpiece - This Harvest Pumpkin Candle basket is so perfect for the center of your table! Imagine lit candles providing ambient light while you eat! 
Gold Silverware - This set of gold silverware goes so well with the colors of Fall! Speaking of gold... 

Metallic Gold...
Napkin Rings - I think these gold napkin rings are perfect! They go with almost anything.
Metallic Gold pumpkin and gourds - These are faux of course. There is a large metallic gold pumpkin and then also metallic gold pumpkin and gourds

Faux Branches and Greenery...
I love all of these faux branches - there is an acorn spray, gingko spray, and setaria spray.  The acorns are perfect for filling vases, bowls, or just scattering around. 
Then there is this pretty Magnolia wheat wreath!!
I love these black and white Mackenzie Childs Beware pumpkins!

I hope you enjoyed my little round-up for Fall home decor!  Forgot to mention, I LOVE LOVE LOVE this pumpkin bread (and there is now a gluten free version!!). I know it's a little pricey but IT IS WORTH IT. 

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Friday, August 26, 2016

Fall finds, trip to Switzerland and more... Five on Friday

Fall finds at Williams Sonoma
Last year I purchased these pumpkins bowls and large cast iron pumpkin cocotte.  We used them through all of Autumn to bake our soups in.  Well, we dug it out of storage today and are serving up this season's pumpkin soup for the first time this year! 
This year, Staub came out with a large cast iron white pumpkin and then the smaller soup bowls.  Isn't it super cute in white?  For those that would prefer, there is also a black pumpkin for Halloween night!
Sur La Table also has little white pumpkins as does Bed Bath & Beyond.  Those retailers also have the large pumpkin. Macy's has the large pumpkin too but not at a discount.

The thing I bought this year was a new bread pan for my pumpkin bread! Secret though.... I totally use the WS pecan pumpkin bread mix to make the pumpkin bread. It is just SO GOOD.  I strongly suggest buying their pumpkin pecan butter too.  Here is where you can get a set of the bread mix and pecan pumpkin butter.  New this year is some caramel pumpkin butter - could be good.  Here is the gluten free bread mix!  This is the cute bread pan pictured below that I bought!


Switzerland Trip!
We are headed to Switzerland this Fall!!!  I have been to Zurich once just for a few hours - we stopped by the old town and went to Rhine Falls.  This time we're going through Zurich, then to Lucerne and then to the Bernese Oberland.  Have any of you been to Switzerland?? I would LOVE to know your tips, must-sees, where to eat, and etc! Please leave me a comment!!





Facebook!
I've been working on updating my Facebook page for Peonies & Orange Blossoms.  After reading this post from Shabbyfufu, I have spent a lot of time doing some digital renovation (can I call it that?) on the page.  I invite you all to come check out! Link is below OR go here.

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Favorite Instagrams
Doesn't this bowl look SO TASTY and pretty all at the same time!?











On the Web...
Have you seen the laundry room of Chip and Joanna of Fixer Upper fame?? I doubt it because they've never showed us before... until NOW!  Isn't it pretty??? Read Joanna's article here.

From the blog...
Have you ever had a PUPUSA? A what, you say? A pupusa!!  If you've never heard of them before or want my recipe for them, check out my pupusa post here!

PS - Can you believe this is the LAST Five on Friday in August??


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                                        Sharing at these parties!  Friday FavoritesFive on FridayOh Hey, Friday! 

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Wednesday, August 24, 2016

6 Summer Tablescapes - Thursday Favorite Things

Last week I was talking about Fall but this week we're focusing back on Summer!  I was inspired by all of these beautiful Summer tablescapes that some of our lovely bloggers shared with us all!  Let's take a look at them! 
For those of you that read my blog early this morning, you may have noticed I accidentally published this post a little early! Whoops! Here it is again, this time with the link party.
Also in exciting news, we have a new PARTY LOGO!!!
6 Beautiful Summer Tablescape Ideas
Belle Blue Interiors shared this pretty butterfly blue meadow table.
 Olla Podrida shared this fun French Riviera tablescape!
 Dining Delight shared this Summer tablescape with black, white, and red colors!
 J. Bigg's Little Piecesshared this fun owl table with the back-to-school spirit kept in mind!
Fabby's Living shared this sea-themed Summer table.
Congratulations if you were featured! I have pinned your posts to our Thursday Favorite Things Pinterest Board! Please grab a "featured" button (click on link) to display on your blogs!

Here is our new beautiful logo!!  What do you all think??? I think the flowers are so pretty! Please follow your hostesses! 

Thursday favorite things hostess
nina Collagedebi collage 1
marilyn 1 Collageolivia 1 Collageangelina collageShellie 1 Collage

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Tuesday, August 23, 2016

How Would you Decorate a Giant Wall?

Alright my internet friends, I have a question for you.  In the house that we are building, we have a wall in our living room that is 24 feet long and the ceiling height is 14 feet tall.  So... A BIG giant wall! Normally, one would put a fireplace on that wall but the fireplace is going on the other side of the room. See diagram below.


So our wall with the 3 French doors would look something like below... 3 French doors, with room for a sconce in between and then there will be windows above the doors too.  The windows will help prevent the odd 5 feet of empty space between the top of the door and ceiling.
French Provincial

Our fireplace inspiration is Patina Farm... stoned fireplace that is see through, except our fireplace will be a gas one as an open wood burning fireplace just like below is not allowed in our county.
source-patina farm

So, now we turn to the wall. THE BIG wall.  I am trying to solve how to decorate this wall before it's built in case someone has a great suggestion that I would need to prepare for before the walls go up (like wiring for sconces or something).
Now, we will have a tv on that wall (unfortunately... why are TVs so ugly??)
It will look exactly like the picture below as it is the exact console table we have. iI is 100" wide, 24" deep and 32" high.
This thing piece will be centered on the wall.  So what do we do around it?

Now, I know that the ideas below won't be accomplished in one night. It would take me a long time to put together a gallery wall completely BUT so long as I have a plan then that's fine.

Gallery Wall...
We could do a big gallery wall.  I have always envisioned having a gallery wall somewhere. This could look interesting. Of course I would want to fill it with antique oils... I also happen to be friends with some antique painting dealers who I'm sure would be happy to sell me a whole house full! 
source simple everyday glamour
Here is a more modern gallery wall... I could accomplish this in a day but I would like antique oils instead (but my checkbook doesn't!)
Oh, when I think of gallery walls by the way, I always think of this super cool room that was in Peterhof Palace in St. Petersburg, Russia. It was so cool! 
Or I could find some giant paintings!
source 1st dibs
Panels 
We could put some wood panels on the wall.   But I wouldn't want to panel the rest of the room, so it would just be the one wall.   
source - 1st dibs
 These panels are a little simpler. We could make some faux panels essentially... just put some wood trim on the wall and paint it. 
source - 1st dibs
Panels like below, although I know those are doors but we could just do the panels and pretend like they are doors. 

We could also just do panels on the lower half of the wall like below. Although then would we need to do that on the wall with the French doors? Remember there are really only 2 walls in the living room.
Wallpaper
 We could just wallpaper the one wall and put two paintings on it. 
source 1st dibs

We could frame some wallpaper like below and hang some paintings. 
Mirrors
Do I put one or two giant mirrors on the wall?
Source
source - 1st dibs
Built-In Cabinets
Do we build built in cabinets, like the picture below (except where the painting is put the tv console?)
source Suzanna Kasler
See, my husband could have his ladder he has wanted like below!

Tapestry
Let's be honest, I would really love a large antique tapestry. But finding one in my price range at this size would be an impossible feat.  Hey, a girl can dream!


 Also, you will have probably noted that my source pictures are all very fancy.  Well, it was hard finding pictures of large walls and the only places I could think of that have large walls are in the Chateaus in France and Palaces of Europe. So, of course, my house wouldn't nearly be as fancy!

So, how would YOU decorate such a large wall??  Please let me know, I am eager to hear as we're going to have to finalize our plans soon and if there is a change like (make sure you put lights on the wall) then let me know.

Also, I have considered a window, but the windows that would be at eye level would be ugly because it looks at something ugly on the other side. We *could* consider clerestory windows, would have to talk to structural engineer about roof lines and such.

Leave me a comment! 
Please be aware I moderate my comments so your comment (to prevent spam) and it will not show up immediately.


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