To Whet, Not to Sate

November 10, 2014

Appetizers. A savory little something to the whet the appetite…a prelude of what’s to come. On Thanksgiving there is always plenty, so the idea of keeping these little bites simple makes sense. With a cocktail or a glass of sparkling wine there could be no better paring than Frico…a baked Parmesan crisp. If these were any easier in fact, they’d make themselves. And, only one ingredient…parmesan cheese. Pre-heat your oven to 375 and drop tablespoons of shaved Parmesan cheese onto a parchment lined baking tray. Spread the mounds to a uniform thickness approx 3″ in diameter. Bake the trays one at a time for about 8-10 minutes, watching closely, until golden. Remove trays from the oven and cool slightly before moving the Frico to a rack to cool completely. These can be made a few days ahead and stored in an airtight container getting one task out-of-the-way earlier in that busy week. Why not check the fridge, turn on the oven and knock out a batch now?  Think of it as a little taste test for the holidays ahead.

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Show Me Your “Ugly”

November 2, 2014

Less than a month until Thanksgiving and Christmas right on its heels. Still, you have no idea how to handle your ugliest interior design dilemma before the crush of holiday revelers start popping in. Well, help is here. Take a quick snap of an area in your home or garden that could benefit from a new set of eyes and send* it to me. I’ll select one  submission at random, come up with a plan and post the simplequietmodern resolution. There’s no time like now…I spotted my first installation of Holiday lights only yesterday.

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Keeps the pics to a few… add any detail that might help… and get them to me by midnight November 8, 2014 at gpettyint@comcast.net  with SQM in the subject line. Your place looks great but your holiday cooking or entertaining skills have you in a knot? I’ll take that submission as well. Let’s get started.

 

Hippity hoppity…

March 23, 2013

Easter’s on its way. Now’s the time to gather some sweet treats while the store shelves are packed with your childhood favorites…malted milk eggs ( the original sweet & salty), jelly beans and ( they better only be yellow and shaped like chicks) Peeps… and start getting your list together for Easter brunch, lunch or dinner. Simple glass cylinder bowls filled with sprouted wheat grass will make modern and cost-effective centerpieces with the addition of  cracked egg shells and a few pastel jelly beans and a leather handled galvanized bucket would be the perfect Easter Basket if not otherwise put to use keeping wine chilled. Shake up your usual deviled egg recipe with a touch of cornichon or capers and consider a simple dessert of spring berries and Italian Almond Cookies.  That was easy. You have a look,  the ” befores and afters”…all you need to do now is decide on the main course. grssEgg5FgrssEgg10FgrssEgg8rbneggsFCopy of pnkhyacFpeepsFmain_hero_fullwidth_height_casa-midy-orange-bucketdvleggs5Fstrwbrry2FCopy of easteralmndcookiesFitalianalmondcookiesLeather handled galvanized bucket byCasamidy@ CASAMIDY.COM photo of  bucket by casamidy.

Small plates…

December 14, 2012

Appetizers…Bocas…or simply snacks, a  single  hor d’oeuvre or an assortment can be a prelude to dinner or actually be dinner. Grazing for me has always been preferable to the large meal. “Befores and afters” make for simple uncomplicated entertaining during the holidays.  Small plates , when given a little thought before hand, can be gathered or prepared ahead in many cases leaving you free to enjoy hosting a smart soiree without a pocket full of Xanax. The relaxing task of preparing one item, quince paste for example, can be done a few days in advance and the accompanying bread, Manchego cheese, olives and Marcona almonds can be gathered in one quick stop at the market. Some wine and perhaps something of chocolate  and you are ready to entertain a handful of friends on the fly any night of the week.

I used the recipe for the Quince Paste ( Menbrillo) here:http://www.simplyrecipes.com/recipes/membrillo_quince_paste/