Archive | Uncategorized RSS feed for this section

Obsession:Tonic Home

21 Nov

All images via http://www.tonichome.com

I recently stumbled upon my new favorite home decor site, http://www.tonichome.com.  Boasting a beautifully curated collection of interesting and luxurious items, I’ll be sure to start saving up for some of my faves…

Ombre Tribe Throw Pillow – Adam & Viktoria – $250

Small Clam Bowl – $105

Lotus Ceramic Canister – $20

Blue & White Dragon Temple Jar – $800

Lions Head Medallion Glassware Set of 4 – $220

Artichoke Table Lamp – $410

Social Butterfly Upholstered Chair – $1450

Yours-

The Domestic Diva in Training

Lazy Salted Caramels

20 Nov

I tried this easy – and delicious! – Nestle Toll House recipe for very easy salted caramels at my get-together.  They were a huge hit and so yummy.  I put the caramels in mini cupcake paper of all colors and patterns.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup NESTLE® TOLL HOUSE® Semi-Sweet Chocolate Morsels
  • 1 teaspoon vegetable shortening
  • 25 soft & chewy rectangular caramels, unwrapped*
  • 1/4 teaspoon coarse sea salt

Directions

  1. Line baking sheet with wax paper.
  2. Microwave morsels and vegetable shortening in small, microwave-safe bowl on HIGH (100%) power for 1 minute; stir. The morsels may retain some of their original shape. If necessary, microwave at additional 10- to 15-second intervals, stirring just until morsels are melted; cool slightly.
  3. Dip caramel pieces, using a fork, into melted chocolate. Shake off or scrape excess chocolate against side of bowl. Place on prepared baking sheet. Sprinkle with sea salt. Refrigerate for 15 minutes or until set.

Thanks, Nestle!  Love the recipe.

Yours-

The Domestic Diva in Training

Setting Up a Bar

20 Nov

Images via Lonny, HGTV, Domino, Habitually Chic & Google Images

Last weekend I threw my first cocktail party at the new apartment.  The highlight of the party set-up was definitely the bar.  It was almost like the hearth of the room…it was right in the center, and the spot where everyone wanted to be!  It is definitely a work in progress..I had all the right booze and mixins’ but I didn’t have the barware yet that I need to really set up a fabulous bar.  I’m on the hunt for the perfect cart, glassware and accessories.  So in the meantime, I’m looking to any and every blog/magazine for some inspiration…

Happy drinking!

Yours-

The Domestic Diva in Training

A Diva-Worthy Bedroom

9 Nov

Images via Domino, ELLE Decor and LONNY

I moved into my first apartment in July, and it took no time at all to fill with the items I had been collecting for what feels like forever- fur throws, silk pillows, faux-orchids in ceramic pots and candles galore.  I love the living room, it is my favorite space and is decorated exactly how I had surmised.  The dining room and bathroom are good enough, of course there’s only so much you can do with a tiny bathroom.  But the bedroom has been a bone of contention since I moved in.  It just isn’t quite right and I can’t put my finger on it.  It has the bedspread, pillows and end table I picked out, yes.  But it lacks the comfort, charm, and, well, divadom of the living room.  I think the room just isn’t cozy enough for my liking- there are two thin cotton rugs on either side of the bed, there’s a draft coming in the window, and it just needs more warmth.  So I decided to hit the books and hit the internet to find some inspiration.  I’m not quite sure where I’m headed, but I think it could use a thick rug in an interesting pattern, a faux fur throw, a chair for the corner, and maybe some velvet curtains.  I’ll keep you posted….

What do you do to give a room that chic, “warmth factor” that I’m so desperately looking for?

Mom’s Easy and Delicious French Toast

9 Nov

Here’s another recipe that couldn’t be any easier- or more tasty!

You’ll Need:

  • 2 pieces of bread
  • A pinch of cinnamon
  • A dash of pure vanilla extract
  • Butter
  • Maple Syrup

Step One

In a dish, crack the egg and whisk around with a spoon until broken apart and spread out.  Add a pinch of cinnamon, a dash of pure vanilla extract, and stir.

Step Two

Place one piece of bread in the mixture and swish around until one side is coated.  Flip and coat the other side.  Place on a heated and coated frying pan.  Do the same with the second piece of bread.

Step Three

Let the two pieces of bread cook until brown – do not flip, but lift the edges up to peek at its progress.  Once one side is brown, flip and let the other side brown.  You’re done!

Eat with lots of butter, syrup, powdered sugar, strawberries, whipped cream….the possibilities are endless and you have a delicious breakfast in less than five minutes!

Yours-

The Domestic Diva in Training

2-step Chicken and Dumplings a la Crock Pot

9 Nov

Rocco DiSpirito recently tweeted “Daylight savings time = time to slow cook. What are you making tonight?”

To my delight, he re-Tweeted my response:

Oh la la!  I couldn’t believe my eyes!  So I figured I surely should share my recipe and trust me – it’s the perfect meal for a cold day no matter where you are.

You’ll Need:

  • 4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
  • 2 tbsp. of butter
  • 2 (10.75 oz) cans of condensed cream of chicken soup
  • 1 onion, finely sliced
  • 2 (10 oz) packages of refrigerated biscuit dough, torn into pieces (I like Pilsbury of course)

Step One

Place the chicken, butter, soup and onion into the crock pot and fill with enough water to cover

Step Two

Cover and cook on high for 4-5 hours.  About 30 minutes before serving, place the torn biscuit dough into the slow cooker.  Cook until dough is no longer raw.

And that, my friends, is IT!  Trust me, this was one of the most delightful recipes I have ever tried.  It was pure comfort food and I couldn’t believe how the biscuit dough turned out as dumplings!  Unreal!  Give this a try and let me know what you think…this one is now a standby recipe for me on a cold day.  I suggest serving with something green and crunchy to add some texture on the side, like fresh green beans with garlic seasoning.

Yours-

The Domestic Diva in Training

Super Easy Baked Sweet & Salty Nuts

6 Nov

The delicious results!

I’ve been really hankering for a delicious nut mix that’s salty, sweet and perfect.  Store bought is good, but there seems to be so many unnecessary ingredients and preservatives.  So I decided to give it a go myself and the results were delish!

I love this recipe because there’s no measuring necessary and you can totally play it by ear.

First, grab your favorite bag of nuts at the grocery store- unsalted.  I went for a bag of mixed nuts with cashews, almonds, peanuts, etc.

You will need:

  • A bag of your favorite unsalted nuts
  • Butter
  • Maple syrup
  • White sugar
  • Brown sugar
  • Cinnamon
  • Fine salt

Step One

Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees.  Next, in a large mixing bowl, dump in 2 large spoons of butter.  Microwave until melted and hot.

Step Two

Dump the nuts into the bowl with the butter and stir well.  Each nut in the bowl should be glistening with butter.  If some look dry, add more melted butter and stir.

Step Three

Add in maple syrup to taste.  Add in a hearty amount of white sugar and brown sugar.  Add a few dashes of cinnamon and salt, all to taste.  Stir well.

Step Four

Put nuts onto a baking pan lined with baking paper.  Spread evenly and ensure no spots are piled up.  Nuts should be in a single layer on the pan.

Step Five

Taste one of the nuts.  If needed, add more white sugar, salt and cinnamon.  Stir well and place the trays in the oven for 10-12 minutes.

Step Six

Allow the nuts to cool for 1-2 minutes.  They will likely still be a bit sticky from the butter and maple syrup.  Add more white sugar, salt and cinnamon to taste to soak up some of the syrup.  Stir and allow to cool.

These are so fabulously delicious that you won’t believe how easy they were to make.  I can’t wait to try different combinations – honey, powdered sugar, a dash of cayenne pepper…the possibilities are endless!  Give it a try and share your secret recipe…

Yours-

The Domestic Diva in Training