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      Color Collective: Links to Colorful Living, Vol. 14

      Color Collective: Links to Colorful Living, Vol. 14

      You may have noticed that I've been M.I.A. from the blog for over a month. Life has an unpredictable flow - sometimes it moves at a snail's pace then suddenly lifts you out of your comfort zone and tosses you into unfamiliar spaces with no instruction manual. That kind of explains the last few weeks of my life.

      I've moved my personal and professional lives to a brand new city with brand new energy. It's been exciting and unsettling. Anyone who has moved into a new home knows that it takes a village but we only had a tiny hamlet. The adventure continues....

      What is beyond me is that while most everything has been unpacked and put in its proper place, there are still some items from my kitchen that either lost their way, decided they weren't willing to make the move with us or have just vanished into thin air. I thought hosting a small dinner party last week for a few friends was a good idea but in the process, I had to repurchase many things I thought I already had. 

      One thing that was on my side was that I was able to catch a few fabulous sales on dinnerware, drinkware and cookware. Here are a few things I bought or want to buy for cooking and entertaining that may still be available at great prices:

       

      1.  These knives are so durable and stay sharp.

       



      2.  I bought these large bowls in all of my favorite colors.
      FIESTA Large Bistro Bowls





      I hope you love the products I recommend! This blog post contains affiliate links and I participate in the Amazon Associate program, which means that if you click on one and make a purchase, I may receive a small commission. This helps support the blog and allows me to continue to bring you color commentary like this. You can find more about our site, privacy, and disclosure policies here. Thank you for your continued support!





      3.  This cookware set is the very best, IMO.

      TRAMONTINA Cookware Set
      4.  I'm a master Mocktail Mixologist so it's mandatory that I have interesting glassware.

      GODINGER - Sheer Colored Glassware

      5. Never underestimate the power of a good set of coasters to be an excellent conversation starter.
      JONATHAN ADLER Versailles Coasters




      Extra 30% off. Use Code: OWNIT. Exclusions Apply. Valid: 3/25-4/3.



      6. Seasonings have never tasted so good in these pretty salt & pepper shakers.
      JONATHAN ADLER Newport Salt & Pepper Set7.  I think this glass water pitcher is divine!

      JOYJOLT Infiniti Glass Water Pitcher

      8.  What better way to serve salad than with these.
      THE MET STORE Hosta Leaf Salad Servers9.  A little fussy? Yes. But I'm all in on these adorable napkin rings.
      THE MET STORE Gingko Napkin Ring Set
      10.  I'm a HUGE fan of these dessert plates and the company that makes them.
      CERTIFIED INTERNATIONAL Valencia Dessert PlatesThat's all for now. Until next time, may your life be filled with joyous COLOR!
      Love, Juliet






      OUR PARTNER

      Macy's logo

      Colorful Eats: Wine-Braised Short Ribs With Potatoes

      Colorful Eats: Wine-Braised Short Ribs With Potatoes

      My family would not consider themselves as strictly vegan, vegetarian or pescetarian. We are truly omnivores because variety is the spice of life, right?

      We try to eat healthy foods every day but we are not regimented nor do we have any allergies that would keep us from any food group. However, eating beef is really a once-in-awhile thing.

      It's usually the occasional hamburger or a juicy steak for the Home Chef Extraordinaire. As we've matured, we have found that certain foods are more difficult to digest and beef has become challenging at times.

      But my Wine-Braised Short Ribs With Potatoes are a special occasion meal that we all look forward to.

       

      Instant Pot

       

      I hope you love the products I recommend! This blog post contains affiliate links and I participate in the Amazon Associate program, which means that if you click on one and make a purchase, I may receive a small commission. This helps support the blog and allows me to continue to bring you color commentary like this. You can find more about our site, privacy, and disclosure policies here. Thank you for your continued support!

       

       

      As with many of our Colorful Eats recipes, this dish is made in an Instant Pot which means it's simple, quick and incredibly flavorful. It's just right for those cozy Winter evenings when you just want a meal that's warm and savory. 

       

      Wine-Braised Short Ribs with Potatoes - Ingredients

      Wine-Braised Short Ribs 

      I adapted this recipe from the America's Test Kitchen Mediterranean Instant Pot Cookbook . You may already have most of the ingredients for this rich, delicious dish. NOTE: You can use tomato paste instead of tomato sauce if you prefer a thicker sauce. Parsley can be used as a garnish but since the Home Chef Extraordinaire doesn't like the taste of the herb, I left it out. And while I used dealcoholized red wine in my recipe, feel free to use your favorite Merlot or Cabernet Sauvignon instead.

       

      Juliet's Wine-Braised Short Ribs with Potatoes

      serves 4

      total time:  2 hours 15 minutes

      INGREDIENTS

      • 2 pounds bone-in beef short ribs, trimmed
      • ¾ teaspoon table salt, divided
      • ¼ teaspoon pepper
      • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
      • 1 onion, chopped fine
      • 6 garlic cloves, minced
      • 2 tablespoons tomato sauce
      • 1 tablespoon minced fresh oregano or 1 teaspoon dried
      • 1 (14.5-ounce) can whole peeled tomatoes, drained with ¼ cup juice reserved, chopped coarse
      • ½ cup dry red wine
      • 1 pound small red potatoes, unpeeled, leave whole or halved
      • 2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley (optional)

      INSTRUCTIONS

      1.  Dry short ribs dry by patting them with paper towels. Sprinkle with ½ teaspoon salt and pepper. Using highest sauté function, heat oil in Instant Pot for 5 minutes (or until just smoking). Brown short ribs on all sides, 6 to 8 minutes; transfer to plate.

      2.  Add onion and remaining ¼ teaspoon salt to fat left in pot and cook, using highest sauté function, until onion is softened, about 3 minutes. Stir in garlic, tomato sauce and oregano and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Stir in tomatoes and reserved juice and wine, scraping up any browned bits. Place short ribs meat side down into pot and add any accumulated juices. Lock lid in place and close pressure release valve. Select high pressure cook function and cook for 60 minutes.

      3.  Turn off Instant Pot and let pressure release naturally for 15 minutes. Quick-release any remaining pressure, then carefully remove lid, allowing steam to escape away from you. Transfer short ribs to serving dish, tent with aluminum foil, and let rest while preparing potatoes.

      4.  Strain braising liquid through fine-mesh strainer into fat separator; transfer solids to now-empty pot. Let braising liquid settle for 5 minutes, then pour 1½ cups defatted liquid and any accumulated juices into pot with solids; discard remaining liquid. Add potatoes. Lock lid in place and close pressure release valve. Select high pressure cook function and cook for 4 minutes. Turn off Instant Pot and quick-release pressure. Carefully remove lid, allowing steam to escape away from you.

      5.  Using slotted spoon, transfer potatoes to serving dish. Season sauce with salt and pepper to taste. Spoon sauce over short ribs and potatoes and sprinkle with parsley, if desired. Serve.

       

       Per serving: Cal 340; Total Fat 13g; Sat Fat 4.5g; Chol 55mg; Sodium 700mg; Total Carbs 29g, Fiber 3g, Total Sugar 7g; Added Sugar 0g; Protein 21g

       

      I hope you try this recipe and if you do, let me know how it turns out in the comments below or on Instagram!

      Love, Juliet

       

       

       

       

      Wine.com

      Colorful Mocktails: Cranberry Pomegranate Martini

      Colorful Mocktails: Cranberry Pomegranate Martini

      This drink is the holiday season in a glass! I actually made this cocktail for the first time a few months ago when the weather was still warm and we were still sipping iced teas and lemonade. When I asked my taste testers to try it out, the comments I got back contained words like "festive", "christmas-y" and oddly, "ring the jingle bells". 

      I hope you love the products I recommend! This blog post contains affiliate links and I participate in the Amazon Associate program, which means that if you click on one and make a purchase, I may receive a small commission. This helps support the blog and allows me to continue to bring you color commentary like this. You can find more about our site, privacy, and disclosure policies here. Thank you for your continued support!

      Cranberry Pomegranate Martini Ingredients

      When I had my first taste, I immediately felt transported into a warm family room filled with people I love chatting and laughing and waiting for the "big bird" to come out of the oven. While in reality, the group I'm hosting this year will be bigger than last, it still won't be the grand size of gatherings in the past as we continue to find our way in the ongoing pandemic.

       

       

      One thing that is for sure, I will be serving this delightful cocktail to my guests, both the alcoholic and non-alcoholic versions. It's the holiday thing to do.

      Try the recipe below and get into the spirit!

      Juliet's Cranberry Pomegranate Martini

      Juliet's Cranberry Pomegranate Martini

      makes 1 drink

      INGREDIENTS

       

      INSTRUCTIONS

      1. Chill a martini glass.
      2. Pour ingredients into a cocktail shaker in order listed.
      3. Cap, shake and strain into chilled serving glass.
      4. Add sliced lime and pomegranate seeds to garnish and enjoy!

       

       

      Colorful Cocktails: How-To Videos exclusively on Pinterest

       

       

       

      Love, Juliet

       

       

      Wine.com

      Colorful Eats: How to Master the Charcuterie Board

      Colorful Eats: How to Master the Charcuterie Board - JulRe Designs LLC

      This post is not about a particularly healthy meal. I know I try to highlight foods in this Colorful Eats series that represent our good-for-you way of eating. But in these challenging and uncertain times, occasionally a little decadence is called for. Sometimes demanded.

      So when the Home Chef Extraordinaire was trying to come up with his next creation, he went blank. As he struggled with concepts he thought you would enjoy, his writing pad remaining empty for hours, I tried to make some admittedly lame suggestions and after he returned a long blank stare, I offhandedly quipped "Why not NOT cook at all?".

      It turned out to be the lightbulb in the refrigerator moment he needed. He tossed around a few fantastic ideas with me, some of which will make the blog at later dates.

      Since it's almost football season and we are big fans (Kansas City CHIEFS, y'all), we're always in search of the best game time snacks. And what could be more perfect than a beautifully carved wood board rendered invisible by hoards of artisanal meats and cheeses!

      I hope you love the products I recommend! This post may contain affiliate links, which means that if you click on one and make a purchase, I may receive a small commission. This helps support the blog and allows me to continue to bring you color commentary like this. You can find more about our site, privacy, and disclosure policies here. Thank you for your continued support!

       Charcuterie Board

      We were new to the world of Charcuterie when we started this project, having only experienced these tantalizing spreads at parties. We've admired the creativity involved in the placement of each food element and wondered if we could create our own delicious, colorful (of course) and aesthetically pleasing version for next Sunday's game.

      We set out for our local Whole Foods Market to see what ingredients we could discover. We had no real strategy and no list. And it turns out that's the best way to design your own board. No need to overthink it. Just go with what looks good, tastes divine and appeals to your eye.

      Just remember - if you choose to go meatless, don't call it Charcuterie. There are rules - meat MUST be involved, so sayeth the cured meat gods. It becomes a snack board without them but those are wonderful too! Here's how our Charcuterie experience took shape:

       

       

      Noritake Co., Inc.

       

       

       

      Charcuterie Meats | The Color Lab Blog

       

      1.  We found the right board to build our platter. Large cutting boards, marble slabs, slate boards or ceramic platters are great options.

      2.  We selected a variety of meats. Traditional Charcuterie is all about cured meats but since we wanted to stay nitrate-free, we chose Colameco's prosciutto, sopressata, chorizo and salami. This brand also uses no antibiotics and their meats are minimally processed.

      3.  Cheese? Please! There was an overwhelming array of hard and soft cheeses to choose from. You can't go wrong with your selection. Stay true to your taste buds. We went with cheddars, brie, gouda and gorgonzola.

      4.  Pitted greek and black olives were a must plus some brilliant red Peppadew sweet piquante peppers, roasted garlic cloves, cornichons for good measure.

      Charcuterie Board | The Color Lab Blog

      5.  A sliced french baguette and lightly salted crackers were important for creating bite-sized stacks. With all of the savory-spiciness, we balanced the board with a delectable Blood Orange MarmaladeHot Pepper JellyFig and Ginger Jam and a variety of mustards from Stonewall Kitchen.

      6.  For fresh fruit, we went with grapes because we already had them but berries and dried fruits are good too.

      7.  You can certainly use a variety of nuts but we decided on carmelized walnuts because once we tasted them, nothing else mattered.

      8.  To up the fancy factor, add some fresh rosemary or mint sprigs.

      9.  Serve with your favorite wine or beer. More important than anything else, have fun arranging and eating your Charcuterie board!

      Charcuterie Board | The Color Lab Blog


      Love, Juliet



       

       

      Wine.com

      Colorful Mocktails: Springtime Sparkler

      Colorful Mocktails: Springtime Sparkler

      I've returned to the Colorful Cocktail series with a treat that I’ve created to celebrate these last days of Spring. It's refreshing and slightly exotic - perfect for showers, light lunches or that fresh European soft cheese board you've been meaning to put together. Watch my how-to video or follow the complete recipe below for all you need to add this pretty and super easy drink to your seasonal celebrations!

      Juliet's Springtime Sparkler

      makes 1 drink 

      INGREDIENTS


      INSTRUCTIONS

      1. Chill a 6 oz. champagne flute.
      2. Combine ingredients in a cocktail shaker in the order listed, except sparkling beverage.
      3. Cap and shake vigorously.
      4. Strain into chilled serving glass.
      5. Top with sparkling beverage.
      6. Garnish with a lime wheel and a fresh strawberry.
      7. Enjoy!

       

       

      Love, Juliet

       

       

      I hope you love the products I recommend! This blog post contains affiliate links, which means that if you click on one and make a purchase, I may receive a small commission. This helps support the blog and allows me to continue to bring you color commentary like this. You can find more about our site, privacy, and disclosure policies here. Thank you for your continued support!

       

       

       

      Wine.com