Tori Avey http://toriavey.com Recipes & History - Inspired by our Delicious Past Fri, 24 Jun 2016 19:18:06 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.5.3 The Drama of Peonies in Spring http://toriavey.com/home-garden/2016/06/the-drama-of-peonies-in-spring/ http://toriavey.com/home-garden/2016/06/the-drama-of-peonies-in-spring/#respond Fri, 10 Jun 2016 20:13:21 +0000 http://toriavey.com/?p=39351 Fill your home with gorgeous, colorful peonies - the drama queens of spring!... Read More]]>

The Drama of Peonies in Spring - Home Decor Inspiration

The Drama of Peonies in Spring from ToriAvey.com contributor Brenda Ponnay

Every year about this time I haunt my local Traders Joe’s, waiting for the grand entrance of the peonies – my favorite flower of all time. They come in small bunches, five to six buds wrapped up in cellophane. If you weren’t aware of the amazing grandeur locked away in the little golf-ball-sized buds, you could easily pass them over for seemingly prettier flowers. But two days later, those tiny buds will unfurl and you’ll be grabbing your camera in shock and awe as the petals unfold in an ombre of glory. Peonies are the drama queens of Spring.

The Drama of Peonies in Spring - Home Decor Inspiration

My favorite thing to do is gather my collection of vintage jars, wash them all nice and clean and fill them with bouquets that I strategically place all around my house. One in the bathroom (did I mention they smell divine?), one on my dresser, one at my desk and of course as many as I can fit on my dining room table.

The Drama of Peonies in Spring - Home Decor Inspiration

Tea party anyone?

Personally, I’ve been known to host parties around peony season itself. They are the ultimate decoration, demanding attention with their blooms that can reach up to six inches in diameter in a wide variety of colors. (You can’t get them in blue, unfortunately– look for delphinium if you’re hosting a blue-themed party.) Yes, sometimes they might even steal the whole show, forcing you and your guests to sit on phonebooks so that you can still see each other from across the table, but if you’re looking for a big impact peonies will never disappoint.

The Drama of Peonies in Spring - Home Decor Inspiration

If you aren’t lucky enough to have a Trader Joe’s in your neighborhood you can also find peonies in high-end grocery stores or special-order them from boutique florists. If you are more adventurous, you can go directly to the source and buy them at your local flower market in any big city. But make sure you check online first if you don’t have a resale license; many markets are closed to the public, but may offer open hours on the weekend. Be sure to go early! The best flowers are always gone by 8am.

The Drama of Peonies in Spring - Home Decor Inspiration

When making your bouquets, give your peonies a fresh cut and remove any leaves that might fall below the waterline. This helps the water stay fresher so that your peonies last longer. Peonies also like to stay out of drafts and away from direct sunlight, so keep this in mind when you’re placing them around your home.

The Drama of Peonies in Spring - Home Decor Inspiration

I’m not the only one to wax on about the beauty of this majestic flower. Peonies have a long and illustrious history in art and medicine.  They were very popular in Imperial gardens in China and were even put under Imperial protection during the Tang dynasty. From there, they spread to Japan where they were cultivated (and grafted) to create even more beauty. Ancient Chinese and European medicine used the roots, bark, seeds and flowers to cure anything from bladder stones to jaundice and even menstrual cramps. Today over 262 compounds are extracted from the peony and used to treat a variety of illnesses, including treating muscle cramps and preventing blood clotting.

The name peony itself comes from Greek Mythology. Paean (also spelled Paian) was a student of Asclepius, the Greek god of medicine and healing. When Asclepius became jealous of his pupil, Zeus saved Paeon from the wrath of Asclepius by turning him into the peony flower. Then, Paeon gave peony seeds to Hades to heal him from an arrow wound inflicted by Hercules.

The Drama of Peonies in Spring - Home Decor Inspiration

Many poems and songs have been written about the peony. In traditional Chinese and Japanese art, peonies often represent female beauty, as well as wealth and status. In western poetry, references to the blossoms have been used to evoke spring, ephemeral beauty and fleeting infatuation.

The Drama of Peonies in Spring - Home Decor Inspiration

Whether you are sitting by yourself having a solitary cup of tea or hosting an elaborate dinner party, peonies will always be a welcome guest. Pull up a chair and watch the show. Act fast– they’re in season now, but not for long!

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Looking Forward to June http://toriavey.com/toris-corner/2016/06/looking-forward-to-june/ http://toriavey.com/toris-corner/2016/06/looking-forward-to-june/#comments Mon, 06 Jun 2016 23:37:49 +0000 http://toriavey.com/?p=39374 Sharing upcoming movies, TV shows, books, events and more - what I'm looking forward to in June 2016!... Read More]]>

Looking Forward to June - Tori's Picks for June 2016

June has arrived and with it comes the beginning of summer, which I couldn’t be more ready for! In addition to the bounty of fruits and vegetables I’ll be cooking with, here are a few more things I’m looking forward to this month.

A CERTAIN AGE

Beatriz Williams’ A Certain Age takes place during New York’s Jazz Age. Theresa Marshall, socialite and woman of a “certain age”, has fallen in love with Octavian, a young hero of the Great War. Divorce is out of the question, though Theresa is free to do what she pleases thanks to an agreement with her husband Sylvo. When Theresa’s brother sets his sights on a young woman he intends to marry, Octavian is given he task of looking into the young woman’s family background. Unfortunately for Theresa, Octavian finds the young woman to be quite appealing, which sets off a dramatic love triangle that threatens to reveal family secrets and divide loyalties. Books like this are my absolute favorite in the summer.  A little drama, gossip and intrigue all wrapped up in the glitz and glamour of the Jazz Age? You can find me poolside (under a large umbrella) with my nose in this one when it’s released in hardcover on June 28.

A Certain Age

SHAVUOT

Shavuot (Feast of Weeks) begins on June 11 this year. The holiday commemorates the revelation of the Torah on Mt. Sinai to the Jewish people and is one of the three biblically based pilgrimage holidays known as the shalosh regalim. It is associated with the grain harvest in the Torah and is observed by abstaining from work and attending synagogue services. It is also customary to study Torah all night. Traditionally, Shavuot meals are centered around dairy foods, as milk is considered to be a symbol of nourishment in the Torah. Popular Shavuot foods include cheesecake, blintzes, and kugels. For all things Shavuot, including tasty recipes for the holiday, click here.

Looking Forward to June - Tori's Picks for June 2016

ELIZABETH: THE GOLDEN AGE

In this film Cate Blanchett plays Queen Elizabeth I at a time when she is facing a great threat to her rule both at home and from abroad. While focusing on restoring Roman Catholicism to her country, the queen is also resisting the budding romance growing between her and Sir Walter Raleigh, as well as learning of a plot involving her cousin Mary Stuart, Queen of Scots. Catch the film when it begins streaming on Netflix on June 1.

FATHER’S DAY

The first documented Father’s Day event was held on July 5, 1908, when a West Virginia church sponsored a celebration explicitly in honor of fathers. The Sunday sermon was held in memory of the 362 men who had died in the explosions at the Fairmont Coal Company mines in Monongah. This one-time event came more than 60 years before Richard Nixon signed a proclamation that finally made Father’s Day a federal holiday. Some of my longtime readers know that my father, Renny Avey, is a contributor to the site. His column talks about the years he spent growing up on his family’s ranch in California. Be sure to visit the site on May 19, when I’ll be publishing his next column in honor of Father’s Day.

Looking Forward to June - Tori's Picks for June 2016

Don’t forget to let me know what you’re looking forward to this June!

Affiliate links help to support my website and the free recipe content I provide. A percentage of any purchase you make via these links will go towards buying ingredients, photography supplies and server space, as well as all the other expenses involved in running a large cooking website. Thank you very much for browsing!

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Delicious Recipes for Memorial Day http://toriavey.com/toris-kitchen/2016/05/memorial-day-recipes/ http://toriavey.com/toris-kitchen/2016/05/memorial-day-recipes/#comments Fri, 27 May 2016 19:49:35 +0000 http://toriavey.com/?p=31729 Try these delicious recipes for your Memorial Day weekend celebration, including lots of unique, healthy and flavorful options.... Read More]]>

Delicious Recipes for Memorial Day - Try these recipes for your Memorial Day weekend celebration, including lots of unique, healthy and flavorful options

Delicious Recipes for Memorial Day – Try these recipes for your Memorial Day weekend celebration, including lots of unique, healthy and flavorful options

It’s easy to forget the true reason we celebrate Memorial Day– remembering our fallen U.S. soldiers and war heroes. I feel a profound gratitude to the men and women who serve our country; I am humbled by their sacrifice. Every year I try to attend a local Memorial Day celebration to support our troops and their families. I hope you have a chance to do the same this weekend.

In addition to being an opportunity to honor our troops, this is a long holiday weekend. It’s a perfect chance to relax with family and friends. Memorial Day marks the beginning of summer, a season best spent cooking tasty food on the grill and dining outside in the sunshine (when the weather cooperates!). I know many of you will be spending your holiday weekend doing these very things, so I thought I’d share some of my favorite summer recipes. I’ve included a little something for everyone whether you’re a meat-lover, vegetarian or vegan.

How will you be spending your long weekend?

Delicious Recipes for Memorial Day - Try these recipes for your Memorial Day weekend celebration, including lots of unique, healthy and flavorful options

Aunt Carol’s Spinach Dip

Delicious Recipes for Memorial Day - Try these recipes for your Memorial Day weekend celebration, including lots of unique, healthy and flavorful options

Lemon Basil Grilled Chicken Breasts

Delicious Recipes for Memorial Day - Try these recipes for your Memorial Day weekend celebration, including lots of unique, healthy and flavorful options

Texas Sheet Cake

Delicious Recipes for Memorial Day - Try these recipes for your Memorial Day weekend celebration, including lots of unique, healthy and flavorful options

Lemon Lemon Lentil Parsley Salad

Delicious Recipes for Memorial Day - Try these recipes for your Memorial Day weekend celebration, including lots of unique, healthy and flavorful options

Spiked Limonana

Delicious Recipes for Memorial Day - Try these recipes for your Memorial Day weekend celebration, including lots of unique, healthy and flavorful options

Lemon Vanilla Buttermilk Pie

Delicious Recipes for Memorial Day - Try these recipes for your Memorial Day weekend celebration, including lots of unique, healthy and flavorful options

Ima Burgers

Delicious Recipes for Memorial Day - Try these recipes for your Memorial Day weekend celebration, including lots of unique, healthy and flavorful options

Drop Biscuit Cobbler

Delicious Recipes for Memorial Day - Try these recipes for your Memorial Day weekend celebration, including lots of unique, healthy and flavorful options

Blackberry Vanilla Bourbon Lemonade

Delicious Recipes for Memorial Day - Try these recipes for your Memorial Day weekend celebration, including lots of unique, healthy and flavorful options

Roasted Red Pepper Hummus

Delicious Recipes for Memorial Day - Try these recipes for your Memorial Day weekend celebration, including lots of unique, healthy and flavorful options

Old Fashioned Oat Nut Apple Crisp

Delicious Recipes for Memorial Day - Try these recipes for your Memorial Day weekend celebration, including lots of unique, healthy and flavorful options

Watermelon Rosemary Frozen Lemonade

Delicious Recipes for Memorial Day - Try these recipes for your Memorial Day weekend celebration, including lots of unique, healthy and flavorful options

Crunchy Pickled Salad

Delicious Recipes for Memorial Day - Try these recipes for your Memorial Day weekend celebration, including lots of unique, healthy and flavorful options

New York Cheesecake

Delicious Recipes for Memorial Day - Try these recipes for your Memorial Day weekend celebration, including lots of unique, healthy and flavorful options

Lemon Lavender Iced Tea

Delicious Recipes for Memorial Day - Try these recipes for your Memorial Day weekend celebration, including lots of unique, healthy and flavorful options

Grilled Vegetable Salad

Delicious Recipes for Memorial Day - Try these recipes for your Memorial Day weekend celebration, including lots of unique, healthy and flavorful options

Spiced Up Turkey Burgers

Delicious Recipes for Memorial Day - Try these recipes for your Memorial Day weekend celebration, including lots of unique, healthy and flavorful options

Strawberry Chiffon Pie

Delicious Recipes for Memorial Day - Try these recipes for your Memorial Day weekend celebration, including lots of unique, healthy and flavorful options

Hummus Sriracha Deviled Eggs

Delicious Recipes for Memorial Day - Try these recipes for your Memorial Day weekend celebration, including lots of unique, healthy and flavorful options

Marinated Fish Skewers

Delicious Recipes for Memorial Day - Try these recipes for your Memorial Day weekend celebration, including lots of unique, healthy and flavorful options

Spring Pea Guacamole

Delicious Recipes for Memorial Day - Try these recipes for your Memorial Day weekend celebration, including lots of unique, healthy and flavorful options

Black-Eyed Pea Burgers

Delicious Recipes for Memorial Day - Try these recipes for your Memorial Day weekend celebration, including lots of unique, healthy and flavorful options

Mediterranean 7 Layer Dip

Delicious Recipes for Memorial Day - Try these recipes for your Memorial Day weekend celebration, including lots of unique, healthy and flavorful options

Meyer Lemon Basil Pasta Salad

Delicious Recipes for Memorial Day - Try these recipes for your Memorial Day weekend celebration, including lots of unique, healthy and flavorful options

Limonana

Delicious Recipes for Memorial Day - Try these recipes for your Memorial Day weekend celebration, including lots of unique, healthy and flavorful options

Pickle Slaw

Delicious Recipes for Memorial Day - Try these recipes for your Memorial Day weekend celebration, including lots of unique, healthy and flavorful options

Cherry Cheesecake Shooters

Delicious Recipes for Memorial Day - Try these recipes for your Memorial Day weekend celebration, including lots of unique, healthy and flavorful options

Lemon Pesto Vegetable Skewers

Delicious Recipes for Memorial Day - Try these recipes for your Memorial Day weekend celebration, including lots of unique, healthy and flavorful options

Chocolate Icebox Pie

Delicious Recipes for Memorial Day - Try these recipes for your Memorial Day weekend celebration, including lots of unique, healthy and flavorful options

Spicy Jalapeño Hummus 

Delicious Recipes for Memorial Day - Try these recipes for your Memorial Day weekend celebration, including lots of unique, healthy and flavorful options

Pineapple Upside Down Cake

Delicious Recipes for Memorial Day - Try these recipes for your Memorial Day weekend celebration, including lots of unique, healthy and flavorful options

Lemon Pasta Salad with Roasted Tomatoes, Chickpeas and Feta

Delicious Recipes for Memorial Day - Try these recipes for your Memorial Day weekend celebration, including lots of unique, healthy and flavorful options

Strawberry Basil Martini

Delicious Recipes for Memorial Day - Try these recipes for your Memorial Day weekend celebration, including lots of unique, healthy and flavorful options

Red Cabbage Apple Salad with Blue Cheese

Delicious Recipes for Memorial Day - Try these recipes for your Memorial Day weekend celebration, including lots of unique, healthy and flavorful options

Shortcut Mojito

Delicious Recipes for Memorial Day - Try these recipes for your Memorial Day weekend celebration, including lots of unique, healthy and flavorful options

Moroccan Quinoa and Carrot Salad

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Circulon Cookware Giveaway http://toriavey.com/toris-corner/contests-and-giveaways/2016/05/circulon-cookware-giveaway/ http://toriavey.com/toris-corner/contests-and-giveaways/2016/05/circulon-cookware-giveaway/#comments Thu, 26 May 2016 17:52:06 +0000 http://toriavey.com/?p=39277 Win $150 worth of high quality cookware from Circulon! Comment to win. Circulon: Circles for Love. Circles for Life. #CirclesForLove #ad... Read More]]>

Circular Cookware Giveaway on ToriAvey.com! Circulon: Circles for Love. Circles for Life. #CirclesForLove #ad

Circulon: Circles for Love. Circles for Life. #CirclesForLove #ad

Sponsored by Circulon®

I am very picky when it comes to my cooking pans. Ever since college, when I purchased my first “starter” set of pans, I’ve been learning what works and what doesn’t for my personal cooking needs. At each major milestone in my life– my first apartment, starting my blog, getting married and cooking for our family– I’ve added to and expanded my cooking “toolbox.” Making the transition from single gal with a hotplate to stocking a big, family-style kitchen was quite a shift, to say the least! With wedding season up on us, I’m sure many newlyweds are facing the same challenge as they register for gifts that will be an important part of their new lives together, hoping to find quality items that will last a lifetime.

Circular Cookware Giveaway on ToriAvey.com! Circulon: Circles for Love. Circles for Life. #CirclesForLove #ad

I was recently introduced to Circulon® cookware and their iconic circle cooking surface, which combines three layers of premium nonstick with a unique high-low circle pattern that protects against abrasion for superior food release performance that lasts. One of the most impressive things about this Circulon Symmetry Chocolate Cookware is that it is metal utensil safe, so you don’t need to worry about damaging the nonstick surface and can relax knowing that these pans will carry you well into your cooking future. They are also dishwasher safe, induction suitable and oven safe up to 400 degrees F. Circulon Symmetry Chocolate Bakeware is equipped with Circulon’s famous high/low circle pattern, which helps promote airflow and even baking, as well as a PFOA-free nonstick surface and durable steel construction. And check out that warm, luscious chocolate color. Fancy shmancy!

Circular Cookware Giveaway on ToriAvey.com! Circulon: Circles for Love. Circles for Life. #CirclesForLove #ad

For over thirty years, Circulon has focused on creating solutions that will help make cooking more efficient, convenient and enjoyable. They understand that you have a busy schedule and strive to help you stay one step ahead. Newlyweds can count on the Circulon circles and innovative engineering to help get their kitchens in order and carry them into the next phase of their life, and beyond! Forever is a long time, and Circulon is engineered to keep up.

Circular Cookware Giveaway on ToriAvey.com! Circulon: Circles for Love. Circles for Life. #CirclesForLove #ad

It’s so great being able to use my metal cooking utensils without worrying about scratching up the pans. Also, I’ve gotta say, the PFOA-free nonstick surface and those Circulon high-low circles really do make a difference. Frying up these little quinoa patties, I was impressed that I was able to use half the oil I normally do and still get a crisp, evenly cooked, golden result!

Circular Cookware Giveaway on ToriAvey.com! Circulon: Circles for Love. Circles for Life. #CirclesForLove #ad

Are you starting to think about investing in quality cookware and bakeware in your own kitchen? Newlyweds, I’m talking to you! How does a Circulon “Starter Pack” giveaway sound? To win, simply comment on this post with a valid email address – one comment per reader. Want additional entries? Share this post on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and/or Pinterest with the hashtag #CirclesForLove and let me know in the comments where you shared it. I’ll give you one additional entry per share! We will choose one winner at random to receive a Circulon “Starter Pack” worth $150.00, that includes the following:

  • Chef Pan
  • French Skillet
  • 5 Quart Covered Straining Saucepan
  • 10”x15” Cookie Pan

Winner will be chosen by May 30 and notified via email, so please include a valid email address. Good luck!

Note: Comments submitted may be displayed on other websites hosted by the sponsoring brand. Thank you for supporting my sponsors, they allow me to share more free recipes, cooking tips, home tutorials and food history with you!

Beauty shots and styling by Bethany Nauert.

Circular Cookware Giveaway on ToriAvey.com! Circulon: Circles for Love. Circles for Life. #CirclesForLove #ad

To register for Circulon products for your upcoming nuptials, visit Macy’s, Kohl’s or Target. Each of these popular retailers carries a large selection of Circulon kitchen products. And if you complete a registration with Macy’s or Kohl’s you will receive a Sweetheart Pan Set worth $100.

 Circulon Symmetry Chocolate cookware and bakeware are both backed by a Healthy Hassle Free Guarantee: If you are not satisfied with the performance of their nonstick system, they will replace it completely free of charge. That’s their promise to you. Circulon: Circles for Love. Circles for Life. Visit Circulon on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram and YouTube.

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Circulon. The opinions and text are all mine.

CONTEST CLOSED. Congratulations to Marcia, who was chosen via a numeric randomizer.

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The Forbidden Orchid + A Q&A with the Author http://toriavey.com/toris-corner/2016/05/the-forbidden-orchid-author-interview/ http://toriavey.com/toris-corner/2016/05/the-forbidden-orchid-author-interview/#respond Wed, 25 May 2016 21:45:57 +0000 http://toriavey.com/?p=38841 Tori's Bookshelf - The Forbidden Orchid by Sharon Biggs Waller. Book description and interview with the author.... Read More]]>

Tori's Bookshelf - The Forbidden Orchid by Sharon Biggs Waller. Book description and interview with the author.

The Forbidden Orchid, Sharon Biggs Waller’s second novel, was released on March 8th and I was thrilled to get my hands on a copy. As many of my regular readers know, Sharon is a good friend and contributor to my site. In addition, she’s a fantastic historical writer and researcher. Orchid follows a young woman named Elodie, the eldest of 10 sisters, living in England during the mid 1800s. Elodie’s mother is unwell and her father, a plant hunter, is away most of the time, pushing Elodie into the role of parent. When she learns that her father has failed to collect a rare orchid from China, she quickly realizes that she must convince him to return for the orchid before he is thrown into debtor’s prison and her sisters are sent away to the orphanage or the workhouse. As she begins helping him make plans for his return to China, it becomes clear that she must join him, leaving behind her mother, sisters and the only life she has ever known. She begins the journey as a secret stowaway about a tea clipper named The Osprey. 

Without giving away too much, I will just say that the voyage to China is a rocky one and learning to acclimate to a new country proves to be quite the challenge, though Elodie does manage to meet some charming (and not so charming) characters along the way, including a romantic interest and an adorable dog. Sharon’s writing is filled with unique personalities who each add their own special element to the story. Some of publishing’s top reviewers have lauded Orchid’s feminist themes as well as the book’s sensitive portrayals of addiction, recovery and diversity and I couldn’t agree more. Congratulations on another beautiful book, Sharon!

And now, I’ll turn it over to author herself…

Hi Sharon! You’ve been a contributor to the site for a while now and we love hearing all about your life on the farm. Can you tell us a little about The Forbidden Orchid and why you chose to write about this area of history? And why an orchid? 

Thank you!  I love writing about the farm.  We have four new kids right now—goats, that is! Three Nubians (the goat with the floppy ears) and one LaMancha (the goat with the tiny ears).  We also have our own goat ready to kid in April. It’s Tonks’ first time and we are hoping it will all go well. Everyone is looking forward to fresh goat milk and cheese. We are also redoing our vegetable garden and planting a few more apple trees in the orchard.  There is always something to do on the farm!

I chose to write about natural history and plant hunting because I’ve always been a nature girl.  My favorite place in the world when I was a little girl was in a big maple tree on my grandpa’s farm with a book in my hand. When I was 13 I volunteered at the National Park near my house and then became a park ranger at 18, which was very young for that kind of career. I was a seasonal ranger and so I traveled from park to park.  I worked at Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore, Grand Canyon National Park, and Cabrillo National Monument. But I didn’t learn about garden plant history until I moved to England in 2000. England is a land of gardeners and always has been, so plants are a big part of their heritage. My husband and his family are keen gardeners and I learned a lot from them.  I find inspiration for stories in lots of places and I never know when something will hit.  I learned about the Victorian plant hunters when I visited to The Garden Museum in Lambeth and saw an exhibit. What struck me most were the Wardian cases on display (the terrariums plant hunters used to bring their discoveries back across the seas in good condition) and stories about the perils of plant exploration. Hunters were often kidnapped, ransomed, murdered, drowned or terribly injured in their quests—all to bring back plants for wealthy collectors, landscape companies, and Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. I sort of filed all that info away and thought it would make a great story someday.  I happened to mention it to my agent three years ago and he was immediately interested.  So the story of Elodie, a teen plant huntress, began.

Initially I thought I would have Elodie hunt for alpine species because I loved the idea of her climbing in the Swiss Alps, but in my research I discovered that orchids were the big get, and fortunes could be won and lost on a new plant—a craze called Orchid-delirium. Also, Victorian females were discouraged from owning orchids because people thought it would undo their feminine constitution! It sounds so odd to our modern ears, but orchids were thought be all about passion then. Interestingly, Queen Victoria had a collection of orchids! So, as usual, research helped me pull the story together. This is the great thing about writing historical novels; research is a kind of archeology where you reveal the story as you work your way through the layers of history.

I love orchids myself and have a collection of them in my bathroom. I started with the easiest one to grow, the Moth Orchid (phalaenopsis) and worked my way into a few more difficult ones, such as the Lady Slipper orchid (paphiopedilum), mentioned in the story.

Tori's Bookshelf - The Forbidden Orchid by Sharon Biggs Waller. Book description and interview with the author.

Like your previous novel, A Mad Wicked Folly, Orchid has a strong female voice. Why do you choose to portray your main characters as early voices of feminism?

I’m a huge feminist and I really want to write about how far we have come and how held back women really were. Of course, we still have a long way to go, but it’s good to know about women who have fought so hard for us.

So I like to write characters that yearn for something but are told they can’t because they are girls. I mean, that’s the ultimate slap in the face, and I think it takes a strong person to push against society, not only outwardly, but inwardly as well. Often when women pushed back they became outcasts or brought shame on their families. So this is all grist for the story mill.   Because I love to write historical novels, I don’t have to go far to find instances where girls came up against this societal barrier.

But in ORCHID, I wanted to show what men were up against too.  Alex and Papa are good examples. They had freedom, but they could also lose their lives and family with one wrong step.

What made you decide to write YA historical fiction?

I’ve always loved teen novels. I remember how much they shaped my life. I found myself in the pages of those books and discovered that I wasn’t the only girl who felt as I did. I wanted to be part of that arc and to make stories that inspired girls too.  I love history and my imagination sparks to life when I hear about stories from the past, so it was a natural fit for me.

What are you working on next?

I’m actually working on a YA contemporary about two girls on a road trip, and putting together some ideas for a YA historical set during the Revolutionary War.

Tori's Bookshelf - The Forbidden Orchid by Sharon Biggs Waller. Book description and interview with the author.

To purchase your own copy of The Forbidden Orchid, click here.

Interested in keeping up with Sharon and her writing? Visit her website here.

Do you have a historical read you would enjoy seeing on my Bookshelf? Please let me know in the comments!

Affiliate links help to support my website and the free recipe content I provide. A percentage of any purchase you make via these links will go towards buying ingredients, photography supplies and server space, as well as all the other expenses involved in running a large cooking website. Thank you very much for browsing!

 

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Lazy Daisy Cake http://toriavey.com/toris-kitchen/2016/05/lazy-daisy-cake/ http://toriavey.com/toris-kitchen/2016/05/lazy-daisy-cake/#comments Mon, 23 May 2016 18:19:53 +0000 http://toriavey.com/?p=37457 Light, moist vanilla cake topped with a broiled brown sugar coconut icing. Time-Tested Family Recipe.... Read More]]>

Lazy Daisy Cake – Light, moist vanilla cake topped with a broiled brown sugar coconut icing. Time-Tested Family Recipe.

Lazy Daisy Cake – Light, moist vanilla cake topped with a broiled brown sugar coconut icing. Time-tested family recipe.

My friend Kelly Jaggers is back with another wonderful family recipe! Her nostalgic memories behind this recipe, beautifully expressed, make it taste even sweeter.  ~ Tori

My Aunt Ruby had a habit of tucking important bits of information into containers stashed around her house. Once when I was visiting I wanted to make a glass of chocolate milk. I got the chocolate powder from her pantry and imagine my surprise when I found not chocolate milk mix but money! She was raised during the great depression. While she had a bank account, she never kept all her money there. You never knew, did you?

One afternoon a few years before she passed away Ruby and I were sitting in her kitchen when I started nosing around her kitchen looking for recipes. Ruby was a keen recipe collector. She would copy down recipes onto pale blue recipe cards and store them in a variety of metal recipe boxes around her kitchen. She invited me to copy down any that caught my eye, knowing how much I love to cook. There were recipes she has copied out of the newspaper and magazines, some were recipes from friends, and others were of her own invention.

One thing I noticed about Ruby’s recipes is they often did not contain specific directions about oven temperatures and baking times. This is a common problem with recipes that are passed down in my family. The cook knew the details and just used the card to remind her of the measurements. If there is a method listed, it is often a little sketchy, with just a brief note about how to mix something specific. Ruby had a mind like a steel trap, and she didn’t need the details on the recipes. I quizzed her about recipes that I wanted to have, and she knew without having to think too hard, what the times and temperatures were. She also gave me a few helpful hints that I jotted down. It was on this occasion that I copied down a 1940’s classic, Lazy Daisy Cake.

Lazy Daisy Cake – Light, moist vanilla cake topped with a broiled brown sugar coconut icing. Time-Tested Family Recipe.

A few weeks later I made my first Lazy Daisy Cake. I followed Ruby’s directions to the letter and the result was scrumptious! The cake itself is light and moist with a pleasant vanilla flavor. The star is the frosting. It is similar in flavor to a praline, but closer in texture to the frosting on a German Chocolate Cake. I did a little research and found many variations on the Lazy Daisy Cake. Some contain oats, others have nuts or fruit. I like it just it way Ruby made it.

Ruby said that the Lazy Daisy Cake was a favorite of hers because it was so simple. The best part, she told me, was that this cake didn’t require any fancy decorating. Instead the frosting is warmed on the stove to melt the sugar, then it is spread over the just baked cake and broiled until deeply golden brown and thick. She told me that the trick to keeping the cake super moist was to broil the frosting when the cake was just baked through and golden around the edges, but not golden all over.

This cake would make an excellent hostess gift, or house warming gift as you serve it in the pan. Take over the cake and leave the baking dish or pan behind after the cake has been devoured. That was something Ruby suggested, actually. She loved to take a baked gift in a pretty pan, making it in essence two gifts in one. Who wouldn’t love that?

Food Photography and Styling by Kelly Jaggers

Recommended Products:

9×9 Baking Dish

Mixing Bowls

Saucepan

Affiliate links help to support my website and the free recipe content I provide. A percentage of any purchase you make via these links will go towards buying ingredients, photography supplies and server space, as well as all the other expenses involved in running a large cooking website. Thank you very much for browsing!

Lazy Daisy Cake – Light, moist vanilla cake topped with a broiled brown sugar coconut icing. Time-Tested Family Recipe.

Lazy Daisy Cake

Cake Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp kosher salt

Icing Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon packed light brown sugar
  • 5 tbsp butter, at room temperature
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • 1 cup shredded sweetened coconut

You will also need

  • 9x9 inch cake pan, non-stick cooking spray, medium saucepan, mixing bowls,
Total Time: 45 Minutes
Servings: 9-12
Kosher Key: Dairy
  • Heat the oven to 350°F and spray a 9x9-inch cake pan with non-stick cooking spray. In a medium saucepan over medium heat add the milk.
  • Once the milk begins to simmer turn off the heat and add the tablespoon of butter and vanilla. Stir until the butter is melted. Set aside to cool.
  • In a medium bowl add the sugar, milk mixture, and eggs. Mix until well combined.
  • Then add the flour, baking powder, and salt. Mix until no large lumps remain, about 12 strokes.
  • Pour the batter into the prepared pan.
  • Bake for 22-25 minutes, or until the cake is just golden brown around the edges and the center of the cake springs back when gently pressed.
  • While the cake bakes prepare the icing. In a medium saucepan combine the brown sugar, five tablespoons of butter, and cream.
  • Cook the mixture over medium heat until it comes to a boil then turn off the heat and stir in the coconut.
  • Once the cake has baked remove it from the oven and turn on the broiler. Spread the icing evenly over the cake, then place the cake under the broiler for 3-5 minutes, or until the icing is bubbling vigorously all over. Remove the cake from the oven and cool to room temperature in the pan before slicing and serving. Keeps for up to three days in an air tight container at room temperature.
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Skillet Seared Green Beans with Lemon and Cotija Cheese http://toriavey.com/toris-kitchen/2016/05/skillet-seared-green-beans-lemon-cotija-cheese/ http://toriavey.com/toris-kitchen/2016/05/skillet-seared-green-beans-lemon-cotija-cheese/#comments Sun, 22 May 2016 17:02:30 +0000 http://toriavey.com/?p=38940 Easy flavorful vegetable side dish recipe. A quick hot sear adds major depth of flavor to green beans. Simple and addicting!... Read More]]>

Skillet Seared Lemon Green Beans with Cotija Cheese - Easy flavorful vegetable side dish recipe on ToriAvey.com

 

A few months ago I traveled with my husband and stepdaughter to Miami. We treated ourselves to dinner at Yardbird, an amazing restaurant that serves up Southern-style comfort food. One of the sides we enjoyed was blackened okra with cotija cheese. It was absolutely delicious, and I knew I wanted to recreate something similar in my home kitchen. My local market was out of okra during the week I was testing this, so I opted for green beans instead. The result is absolutely addicting… we can’t stop eating this side dish!

The French were the first to put green beans on restaurant menus. At first, Spaniards were not taken by them at first and found their texture to be too tough (obviously they hadn’t perfected their skillet searing technique!). They were used mostly as ornamental plants until, according to an old wive’s tale, a few pods fell into a pot of soup without being noticed by the cook until it was too late. Instead of starting a new pot, he served the soup with the green beans, then realized all he was missing.

I give the green beans a light steam before searing them, then finish them in the cast iron skillet for that flavorful seared finish. Cast iron is the only way to go here; you need to get your skillet really hot before starting, and a seasoned cast iron is the best for this sort of thing. Searing the green beans will make your kitchen a bit smoky, so be sure to open a window or use your stove’s ventilation system. The flavor result is so worth it. A squeeze of fresh lemon juice at the end brightens the dish. If you want to make this dairy free, it’s quite tasty even without the cotija cheese. You can whip this up in just a few minutes and feel like a rock star chef. Enjoy!
Recommended Products:

Medium Pot

Cast Iron Skillet

Affiliate links help to support my website and the free recipe content I provide. A percentage of any purchase you make via these links will go towards buying ingredients, photography supplies and server space, as well as all the other expenses involved in running a large cooking website. Thank you very much for browsing!

Food Photography Beauty Shots & Styling by Louise Mellor

Skillet Seared Lemon Green Beans with Cotija Cheese - Easy flavorful vegetable side dish recipe on ToriAvey.com

Skillet Seared Green Beans with Lemon and Cotija Cheese

Ingredients

  • 1 lb green beans, trimmed
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 tbsp fresh lemon juice, or more to taste
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 tbsp crumbled cotija cheese (optional – you may substitute feta or omit to make it dairy free)

You will also need

  • Medium pot, cast iron skillet
Total Time: 15 Minutes
Servings: 4-6 side servings
Kosher Key: Dairy (omit cheese to make pareve)
  • Pour about 1 inch of water in the bottom of a medium pot and bring to a boil. Add the green beans and cover the pot. Steam the green beans for 3-5 minutes until bright green and tender-crisp.
  • Drain the green beans and rinse them with cold water to stop the cooking process, then shake in the colander to drain completely. Spread the beans out on a kitchen towel to get rid of excess moisture. These steps can be done 1-2 hours ahead. The rest of the cooking should be done just before serving.
  • For this next part, turn on the vent or open the windows, it will get smoky! Heat a cast iron skillet over medium high for a few minutes to get it very hot. Pour in the olive oil; it will begin to smoke slightly. Quickly add the drained green beans to the skillet and turn the heat to high. Sear the green beans for 2-3 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the beans have color and are slightly blackened in places. Remove from heat. Sprinkle the beans with fresh lemon juice, then add salt and pepper to taste.
  • Place the beans on a serving plate and sprinkle with crumbled cotija cheese. Serve warm.

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The Art of the Homemade Latte http://toriavey.com/home-garden/2016/05/the-art-of-at-home-latte/ http://toriavey.com/home-garden/2016/05/the-art-of-at-home-latte/#comments Fri, 20 May 2016 02:22:26 +0000 http://toriavey.com/?p=39308 Learning the basics of latte art, one delicious mug at a time.... Read More]]>

The Art of the Homemade Latte - Foam Latte Art

The Art of the Homemade Latte from ToriAvey.com contributor Brenda Ponnay

There are a million variables to a great latte. First there are the beans and how they are roasted, then the grind, the temperature at which you steam the espresso grounds, the timing, the water you use to make your espresso… the list goes on and on. Many coffee aficionados are happy to tweak and finesse every variable until they have created the perfect cup.

My personal obsession is the latte art that is created when you pour steamed milk over the top of your espresso. I’ve been working on perfecting it for two years now. And guess what? I have not perfected it! It is an on-going work-in-progress that I practice happily every day. I thought I’d share some of the tips I have learned along the way. My latte art is not as amazing as what you’ll get in a coffee shop, but it’s coming along.

The Art of the Homemade Latte - Foam Latte Art

The first step to great latte art is finding a pretty cup. The cups I used in this post are vintage Pfaltzgraff Gourmet Brown Drip Ware from the 1970’s. I love their short, squatty shape and hook handle, and don’t even get me started on the handmade ceramic glazing, it’s so boho-gypsy! They just make me want to make a latte, curl up in a warm crocheted afghan and listen to Stevie Nicks on repeat, but maybe that’s just me. Lattes can be made in all kinds of cups, but you’ll want to keep their size around 5-6 ounces and wide in brim so that you have a big round canvas on which to create your art.

The Art of the Homemade Latte - Foam Latte Art

Next you’ll need a semi-powerful espresso maker with a steam wand. I had a cheap espresso maker when I first started out and I was never able to create anything more than clouds of foam that blobbed onto the top of my cup. To create latte art you really a lot of steam to aerate your milk so that you can create microfilm, which is basically the incorporation of air into the milk until it reaches the consistency of  house-paint. You don’t want big bubbles. You want tiny, small ones.
The Art of the Homemade Latte - Foam Latte Art

You’ll also need a thermometer with a clip attachment and a stainless steel frothing jug with a narrow spout. You can skip the thermometer and just go by the temperature of the jug (stop when t’s too hot to touch) but a thermometer helps a lot with timing.

The Art of the Homemade Latte - Foam Latte Art

Now, let’s get started on the latte. First make your espresso however you normally would, I prefer two shots, and set it aside. The milk is the shining star in latte art.

Start by pouring cold milk into your jug.  For a 6 oz latte you’ll need about 4.5 ounces of milk. I usually measure by pouring milk into my jug until it’s about half an inch from the spout protrusion.

Insert your steam wand below the surface of your milk and turn it on. This is where the steam wand power comes into play. If you have an espresso machine that has a pressure meter you’ll want your steam to be about 1 bar. I personally do not have a pressure gauge for my steam wand so I wing it, which may be the reason why my latte art is not quite as silky as the professionals.  Nevertheless, I am still able to create less precise, more abstract latte art!  

Steam your milk with the wand below the surface slightly at an angle so the milk swirls in a clockwise formation. Leave it there until you reach about 140 degrees Fahrenheit. Then lift the wand to the surface so that it creates a “pffff” sound, similar to the sound of ripping paper. Let it make that sound and count to four slowly (four seconds). Then put the wand back down and leave it there until your foam as reached 160 degrees. This might happen about the same time as your 4 seconds are up.

Many people say that steaming milk any hotter than 160 degrees gives it a burned flavor, but I’ve chatted with a couple of professional baristas who agree that when it comes to latte art, going slightly over 160 is okay.

Once your milk is steamed you’ll want to make sure your foam is properly groomed for creating latte art. Do this by banging the steam mug on the counter a couple of times to break down the big bubbles, and then swirling it around until the consistency is similar to paint.

The Art of the Homemade Latte - Foam Latte Art

Now you are ready for the pour of your latte/foam/milk concoction. The pour is an art form in itself. Hold your jug above about 4-5 inches above your mug and slowly let it pour out in a narrow stream at the back of the cup. When the cup seems about halfway full start moving your jug back and forth very gently from your wrist. This creates the rosetta or leaf pattern (and yes, I know my art is far from professional level, but I’m a work in progress as I mentioned earlier).  When you get to the back of the cup, move the jug in a quick straight line through the pattern to create the stem.

The Art of the Homemade Latte - Foam Latte Art

Most times my latte art does not create anything near a leaf or a rosetta shape, but that’s okay! That’s where some creativity can come in! If you pour your foam around in a circles you can create a rose shape that can then be pulled out with a toothpick to create a fancy star! You can even swirl your toothpick through a flop of a rosetta to create a series of hearts of funky stripes. I’ve been known to drop a plop of foam on one side and then I dip my toothpick into my espresso crema and draw a quick “x” mark so that my rosetta now looks like a dead fish. Of course, that is not very appetizing– but it’s a lot of fun!

Play around with your toothpick art and you’ll be surprised what you can come up with!

The Art of the Homemade Latte - Foam Latte Art

Another trick to creating latte art is to add spice. I love fresh nutmeg shavings on top or a sprinkling of cardamom. If you can’t dazzle the eyes you might as well try the nose! Plus it’s super delicious.

The Art of the Homemade Latte - Foam Latte Art

No matter where your latte art skill level lies, you’ll always end up with something drinkable. Then you can give it another try the next day! Pair your latte art with some yummy breakfast treats and it’s sure to bring a smile. Rosettas, leaves, hearts and swirls… it’s the little things that show you took some extra time to make your morning ritual something special.

The Art of the Homemade Latte - Foam Latte Art

We hope you enjoy your lattes as much as we do!

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Moroccan Chickpea and Lemon Couscous Soup http://toriavey.com/toris-kitchen/2016/05/moroccan-chickpea-and-lemon-couscous-soup/ http://toriavey.com/toris-kitchen/2016/05/moroccan-chickpea-and-lemon-couscous-soup/#comments Thu, 12 May 2016 22:10:23 +0000 http://toriavey.com/?p=39000 Flavorful vegetarian soup recipe from Lick Your Plate by Julie Albert and Lisa Gnat on ToriAvey.com... Read More]]>

Moroccan Chickpea and Lemon Couscous Soup - Flavorful vegetarian soup recipe from Lick Your Plate by Julie Albert and Lisa Gnat

Lick Your Plate: A Lip Smackin’ Book for Every Home Cook was written by two sisters, Julie Albert and Lisa Gnat. Their mission was to create a cookbook that would serve as a kitchen sidekick. I first learned about the book from their mother, who I’m working with on the Einstein Legacy Project. More on that project in a future post… it’s a truly exciting venture that I’m thrilled to be a part of. I started exploring Julie and Lisa’s cooking website, Bite Me More (gotta love the cheeky title!), and was so impressed by their sense of humor and their laid back approach to cooking. Julie and Lisa are ladies that would be welcome in any kitchen; they do a terrific job of presenting simple recipes in an easy, understandable way. The pages of Lick Your Plate are filled with recipes for everyone, no matter your level of cooking expertise. The ingredients can likely be found in your refrigerator and pantry at any given time and no special equipment is required. I also love that their recipes delve into all types of world cuisine. In one book we’re introduced to a colorful variety of “lip smackin'” dishes, from Easy Teriyaki Cocktail Meatballs to Fresh Tomato & Whipped Feta Polenta Crisps (yum!) to Baja Fish Taco Salad with Creamy Chipotle Dressing. There is no lack of variety here!

What I also love about this book is how quickly the meals come together. Between Julie and Lisa there are 6 teenage kids, so they are no strangers to the advantage of recipes that don’t take much time. Their previous cookbooks, Bite Me and Bite Me Too, have a similar mission statement.  A feature in Lick Your Plate that I really loved is a series of six symbols used throughout the book that indicate helpful tips like how to use leftovers, if a recipe can be made in under 30 minutes, and even some fun food-related trivia.

Moroccan Chickpea and Lemon Couscous Soup - Flavorful vegetarian soup recipe from Lick Your Plate by Julie Albert and Lisa Gnat

While perusing the pages of Lick Your Plate, I came across this recipe for Moroccan Chickpea and Lemon Couscous Soup. It sounded delicious and, like most nights, I was in a bit of a time crunch. The soup only required two pots and an immersion blender, and according to the recipe it only took about 30 minutes to make. Sure enough, the soup was finished and on the table in just over half an hour. It also tastes great! The lemon adds a nice brightness to the soup and it’s made with some of my favorite spices, like paprika and healthy turmeric. As written in the book, the soup itself does not contain any salt. I added a teaspoon at the end, but feel free to leave it out if you’re watching your sodium intake. This recipe can easily be made vegan and dairy free with a simple substitution, noted below. Enjoy!

Note for my kosher readers: this cookbook is not kosher, but many of the recipes are easily adaptable for a kosher lifestyle.

Recommended Products:

Lick Your Plate Cookbook

Large Soup Pot

Immersion Blender

Affiliate links help to support my website and the free recipe content I provide. A percentage of any purchase you make via these links will go towards buying ingredients, photography supplies and server space, as well as all the other expenses involved in running a large cooking website. Thank you very much for browsing!

Food Photography Beauty Shots & Styling by Louise Mellor

Moroccan Chickpea and Lemon Couscous Soup - Flavorful vegetarian soup recipe from Lick Your Plate by Julie Albert and Lisa Gnat

Moroccan Chickpea and Lemon Couscous Soup

Ingredients

  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
  • 2 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp ground turmeric
  • 1/8 tsp cayenne
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 2 medium carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 2 cups canned chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 (14.5 oz) can diced tomatoes
  • 1 tbsp butter - use non-dairy butter substitute or olive oil to make vegan/pareve
  • 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tsp lemon zest

Lemon Couscous Ingredients

  • 2 cups water
  • 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1/4 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 cup uncooked couscous (for vegan, choose a vegan couscous)
  • 1/2 tsp lemon zest
  • Fresh mint, thinly sliced, for garnish

You will also need

  • large soup pot, small saucepan with lid, immersion blender
Total Time: 30 Minutes
Servings: 4-6
Kosher Key: Dairy (can easily be made vegan/pareve)
  • In a large soup pot, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add onion and cook until softened, 4 minutes. Stir in garlic, tomato paste, salt, cumin, paprika, cinnamon, turmeric and cayenne pepper, cooking for 1-2 minutes.
  • Add white wine and reduce until almost completely evaporated.
  • Add carrots and chickpeas, stirring to combine with spices.
  • Add vegetable broth and diced tomatoes and bring to a boil. Lower heat and simmer for 15 minutes.
  • While the soup simmers, prepare the couscous. In a small saucepan, bring water, lemon juice and salt to a boil over medium high heat. Remove saucepan from heat and stir in couscous and lemon zest. Cover and let stand for 5 minutes. Uncover the couscous and fluff using a fork.
  • Once soup finishes simmering, remove from heat. Using a hand held immersion blender, lightly puree soup, leaving it slightly chunky. Stir in butter, lemon juice and lemon zest. Top each bowl of soup with a mound of lemon couscous and sprinkle with fresh mint.
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Mother’s Day Brunch Recipes http://toriavey.com/toris-kitchen/2016/05/mothers-day-brunch-recipes/ http://toriavey.com/toris-kitchen/2016/05/mothers-day-brunch-recipes/#comments Fri, 06 May 2016 16:00:54 +0000 http://toriavey.com/?p=31373 A roundup of tasty and unique recipes for Mother's Day. Show Mom you care with a homemade breakfast in bed, or brunch!... Read More]]>

Mother’s Day Brunch Recipes - A Roundup of Tasty and Inspiring Recipes. Show Mom How Much You Care With Homemade Brunch.

Mother’s Day Brunch Recipes – A Roundup of Tasty and Inspiring Recipes. Show Mom How Much You Care With Homemade Brunch. 

In 1914 Woodrow Wilson signed the proclamation that made Mother’s Day a nationally recognized holiday. Since then, Mother’s Day has been celebrated each May, typically on the second Sunday. The idea of an American Mother’s Day came from Anna Jarvis, who, after her mother’s death in 1905, wanted a national holiday that would honor the sacrifices mothers make for their children. Anna’s mother, Ann Reeves Jarvis, was a peace activist who offered her aid to all soldiers fighting in the Civil War, regardless of which side they fought on. Early on, Anna was able to organize several small-scale Mother’s Day church celebrations, but she wanted something bigger. After years of penning letters to newspapers and important politicians, President Wilson made her efforts worthwhile.

I may be biased, but I’ve always believed that food is one of the best gifts you can offer to somebody you love, especially when it’s homemade. With Mother’s Day this Sunday I can’t think of a better way to honor your mom than cooking something yummy for her… after all, she very likely spent a great deal of time in the kitchen cooking for you! On this special day, brunch seems like a great way to go. Instead of taking your mother out for a pricey meal, why not treat her to a few dishes you’ve made yourself? In hopes of inspiring all of you, I’ve gathered a few of my very favorite brunch recipes that are sure to leave mom feeling extra special… and maybe even a little impressed!

Mother’s Day Brunch Recipes - A Roundup of Tasty and Inspiring Recipes. Show Mom How Much You Care With Homemade Brunch.

Potato Crusted Spinach Frittata

Mother’s Day Brunch Recipes - A Roundup of Tasty and Inspiring Recipes. Show Mom How Much You Care With Homemade Brunch.

Maple Toasted Muesli

Mother’s Day Brunch Recipes - A Roundup of Tasty and Inspiring Recipes. Show Mom How Much You Care With Homemade Brunch.

Cinnamon Babka

Mother’s Day Brunch Recipes - A Roundup of Tasty and Inspiring Recipes. Show Mom How Much You Care With Homemade Brunch.

Poppy Seed Coffee Cake

Mother’s Day Brunch Recipes - A Roundup of Tasty and Inspiring Recipes. Show Mom How Much You Care With Homemade Brunch.

Lemon Lavender Iced Tea

Mother’s Day Brunch Recipes - A Roundup of Tasty and Inspiring Recipes. Show Mom How Much You Care With Homemade Brunch.

Pecan Rolls

Mother’s Day Brunch Recipes - A Roundup of Tasty and Inspiring Recipes. Show Mom How Much You Care With Homemade Brunch.

Chocolate Babka

Mother’s Day Brunch Recipes - A Roundup of Tasty and Inspiring Recipes. Show Mom How Much You Care With Homemade Brunch.

Tahini Waffles

Mother’s Day Brunch Recipes - A Roundup of Tasty and Inspiring Recipes. Show Mom How Much You Care With Homemade Brunch.

Nova Lox Benedict

Mother’s Day Brunch Recipes - A Roundup of Tasty and Inspiring Recipes. Show Mom How Much You Care With Homemade Brunch.

Coffee Cake Cupcakes

Mother’s Day Brunch Recipes - A Roundup of Tasty and Inspiring Recipes. Show Mom How Much You Care With Homemade Brunch.

Cheese Blintzes

Mother’s Day Brunch Recipes - A Roundup of Tasty and Inspiring Recipes. Show Mom How Much You Care With Homemade Brunch.

Smoked Salmon Goat Cheese Scramble

Mother’s Day Brunch Recipes - A Roundup of Tasty and Inspiring Recipes. Show Mom How Much You Care With Homemade Brunch.

Rosa Parks’ Peanut Butter Pancakes

Mother’s Day Brunch Recipes - A Roundup of Tasty and Inspiring Recipes. Show Mom How Much You Care With Homemade Brunch.

Bread and Butter Waffles

Mother’s Day Brunch Recipes - A Roundup of Tasty and Inspiring Recipes. Show Mom How Much You Care With Homemade Brunch.

Mushroom, Harissa and Goat Cheese Frittata

Mother’s Day Brunch Recipes - A Roundup of Tasty and Inspiring Recipes. Show Mom How Much You Care With Homemade Brunch.

Poppy Seed Pancakes

Mother’s Day Brunch Recipes - A Roundup of Tasty and Inspiring Recipes. Show Mom How Much You Care With Homemade Brunch.

Biscuits – Buttery or Dairy Free

Mother’s Day Brunch Recipes - A Roundup of Tasty and Inspiring Recipes. Show Mom How Much You Care With Homemade Brunch.

Vanilla Berry Sparkling Sangria

Mother’s Day Brunch Recipes - A Roundup of Tasty and Inspiring Recipes. Show Mom How Much You Care With Homemade Brunch.

Huevos Shakshukos

Mother’s Day Brunch Recipes - A Roundup of Tasty and Inspiring Recipes. Show Mom How Much You Care With Homemade Brunch.

Challah French Toast with Kahlua Coconut Crème

Mother’s Day Brunch Recipes - A Roundup of Tasty and Inspiring Recipes. Show Mom How Much You Care With Homemade Brunch.

Sriracha Seared Salmon Cakes

Mother’s Day Brunch Recipes - A Roundup of Tasty and Inspiring Recipes. Show Mom How Much You Care With Homemade Brunch.

Dark Chocolate Cherry Mandelbrot

Mother’s Day Brunch Recipes - A Roundup of Tasty and Inspiring Recipes. Show Mom How Much You Care With Homemade Brunch.

Sour Cream Coffeecake

Mother’s Day Brunch Recipes - A Roundup of Tasty and Inspiring Recipes. Show Mom How Much You Care With Homemade Brunch.

Crispy Baked Eggs

Mother’s Day Brunch Recipes - A Roundup of Tasty and Inspiring Recipes. Show Mom How Much You Care With Homemade Brunch.

Greek Yogurt Apple Streusel Cake

Mother’s Day Brunch Recipes - A Roundup of Tasty and Inspiring Recipes. Show Mom How Much You Care With Homemade Brunch.

Ree’s Lemon Blueberry Pancakes

Mother’s Day Brunch Recipes - A Roundup of Tasty and Inspiring Recipes. Show Mom How Much You Care With Homemade Brunch.

Peach Sangria

 

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