Thursday, May 14, 2009

Girls Night / Fondue Party

My sister, Jessica, hosted a Girl's Night / Fondue Party at her house the other night... and, I am proud to say, she made her first tablescape!! More pics can be found here. It was a delightful black and white theme with a burst of cheery yellow!

Here I am making a Strawberry Salad with Candied Pecans.

Carlie and Debran getting the warmers started...

Maria posing while warming up the chocolate. ;)

My cute table setting...

Jessica and Me.

Carlie and Me.

Debran and Maria.

Another sister shot.

We had a visitor! A creepy claw hand!!

Ella couldn't resist coming downstairs to see all of the marshmallows and chocolatey goodness...

To good friends and good conversation.

Such a fun night. :)

Since I had a few requests for the recipe to the strawberry salad... and I don't really have a recipe (I kind of made it up as an excuse to eat candied pecans without feeling quite as guilty haha)... Here is how I make it:

First, make your candied pecans.

-Preheat oven to 275 degrees.
-Line a baking sheet with wax paper and spray cooking spray generously on the wax paper.
-Combine one egg white, 1/2 cup packed brown sugar and a dash of vanilla. Mix.
-Add 3 cups of whole pecans (or chopped if you prefer bit size pieces)
-Lay out across greased wax paper and bake for 10 minutes.
-In a separate bowl mix some cinnamon and white sugar together... after removing pecans from oven, slide pecans off wax paper and into cinnamon and sugar mixture. Coat. Place pecans back on wax paper on baking sheet and bake for an additional 5 minutes.
-Remove from oven and set aside.

Make the salad.
-Combine a spring mix with spinach leaves.
-Add sliced cucumbers.
-Add shredded carrots.
-Add sliced Strawberries.
-Add Pecans.
-Add shredded cheddar cheese to top.
-Raisins and sunflower seeds are optional.
-Individually add a vinaigrette dressing... I think a berry blend is the most Strawberry or Raspberry Vinaigrette Dressing.

Serve extra chilly. I usually make the salad as I'm making dinner and put the bowls (with all the salad ingredients minus the pecans and dressing) into the freezer. When dinner is ready, I pull them out, add the pecans and dressing and serve. I don't know what it is... but an extra cold, crisp salad makes such a difference to me. I especially like to make this on hot days... something about the cold salad and strawberries is the perfect summer salad to me. :)

Hope y'all enjoy!