buon appetito

antipasto plate_jsorelle

We’re Italian and proud of it. We love our heritage and the Italian culture…and of course, the food! Our mouths water with the site of a good Antipasto Platter.

But, how do they do it? How do people create that savory “before the meal” plate that can bring people together and satisfy their cravings? What’s the secret to a beautiful and delicious Antipasto Plate?

We know an expert who can tell us…because we know a place that does everything right when it comes to Italian food and ambiance.

Parisi.

Christine and Simone successfully recreated a little piece of Italy in Denver, Colorado. If you haven’t been, you need to go. And, if you don’t live in CO, you need to add a visit to CO to your bucket list, and add Parisi to your must-eat list.

Here’s owner Christine’s tips for a delectable Antipasto Platter.

- Make sure there’s a balance of olives, cheese, cold cuts & toasted bread with topping.
- Include a mix of soft and hard cheese.
- Tempt the palette with new flavors because people always like to try new things, but also intermingle with a few familiar flavors.
- Keep the toppings simple for the Bruschetta using seasonal veggies. It’s nice to add a little sweet balsamic to the mix to balance out the savory.

parisi antipasto platter_jsorelle

And, what about the essential sidekick to a yummy Antipasto Platter, otherwise known as wine? Christine has us covered there too.
“Reds are a good choice for heartier antipasti plates such as a San Giovese blend {San Giovese is the grape used for Chianti and so many of the Tuscan faves),” she said. “But a refreshing Pinot Grigio isn’t a bad choice for those who insist on white.” 
She added, “Oh, and then there is one of my favorite red Italian blends from the Veneto region:  La Cappuccina’s Madego.. it’s organic and so smooth, but not boring. But I am all for blends these days…I can’t commit to just one grape.”
parisi antipasto platter_jsorelle
The list of ingredients from the mouth-watering plate Meredith Moran of Meredith Moran Photography snapped for us at Parisi includes…
Drunken Goat (harder goat cheese immersed in red wine)
Fresh Asiago
Pecorino Picante
Prosciutto di Parma
Finocchiona salame (with fennel)
Castelvetrano & Kalamata Olives
Mortadella
Pancetta
Bruschetta with an artichoke topping & a cherry tomato topping
parisi antipasto platter_jsorelle
Now are you ready to impress your guests with the most amazing Antipasto Platter ever? Of course, if you need some authentic Italian food for inspiration, a great sandwich for lunch, an impressive place to bring a special date, or you just want to indulge yourself because you deserve it, stop by Parisi. If you want to eat for hours like the Italian’s do in a more intimate setting, make a reservation right below Parisi at Firenze a Tavola {same owners}. I promise, you will want to go back for more. It’s special to us, not only because Florence is our love affair city, but also because Jenna and Will celebrated their rehearsal dinner at Firenze a Tavola, and that was just the beginning to a wonderful life together.
parisi denver_jsorelle
parisit denver_jsorelle
Thanks to Christine at Parisi and Meredith Moran for making this post possible.

gf cookies for breakfast {recipe}

My dad has been known to eat cookies, pasta, pizza and even hamburgers for breakfast. Some of his genes were passed down to me {lucky lady} and I, too, like cold pizza and cookies for breakfast. Nowadays, I try to ‘healthify’ my eating habits {most of the time} and make healthy versions of the refined sugary foods I love for my family and me. Don’t get me wrong, I still can’t say no to a chocolate donut when presented with the opportunity to devour. These Breakfast Cookies are delicious and I don’t need to feel guilty having one or two, or four of these babies for breakfast.

breakfast cookies_jsorelle

Breakfast Cookie
recipe adapted from Sally’s Baking Addiction
makes 15-20 cookies

Ingredients
2 cups gf quick cooking oats
1/2 tsp salt
1 egg
1/2 tsp vanilla
1 tsp cinnamon
1 cup peanut butter
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup almond butter
1 large banana, mashed
1/2 raw and shelled pumpkin seeds
1/4 cup ground flaxseed
1/2 cup dark chocolate chips or raisins {I made with the chocolate}

Bake it, girl
Combine all ingredients except chocolate chips or raisins in a medium bowl and use a mixer to blend well.
Add the chips or raisins and stir.
Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper. Grab a very large tablespoon size dough and place on cookie sheet. The cookies will not spread, so shape dough like an already cooked cookie.
Bake  at 325 degrees for 16 minutes or until the bottom is golden brown.

These are healthy and nutritious, and these moms {us} are giving you and your kids permission to indulge in cookies for breakfast!

breakfast cookies_jsorelle

{images via j. sorelle}

throne of awesome

This weekend, we challenge you to Search for Your Awesome, like The Alison Show and Bing inspired us to do in Salt Lake City. I sat in the throne of awesome {such a genius idea, Alison} in UT, and I am considering having a chair like that in my home – it can be my ‘break’ from the chaos of the day where I can just ‘be’, or it can be the place where all my creativity happens…or it can be my chair when I’m having ‘one of those bad days where nothing is going right and everyone is doing everything better than me’ where I can sit remind myself that ‘I’m AWESOME just the way I am!’
throne of awesome

If you need a little help searching for your awesome, or want to know how to start, check out Alison’s series here.

Watch the awesome party Bing and The Alison Show threw below – I even made the video – look for me at 0:55 adding volume to my head, then watch the rest of the video. Great party styling, fashion and overall awesomeness that will inspire you.

So, tell us – where and how are you going to celebrate your awesome this weekend. E-mail us, comment or find us on instagram @jsorelle3.

Photo: via The Alison Show and photographer of the event, Jessica Peterson Photo. See all of Alison’s recap here.
Video: videographer Modern Atelier, @modern_atelier

pikes peak or bust

gold rush_jeffandjewelsphotography

When we saw the Whiskey Barrels from this Gold Rush photo shoot, we fell in love. We are whiskey girls at heart, and we love rustic event decor…but when we saw the insane talent and details behind this shoot by La Boheme Events, we just knew we had to share.

Details behind the shoot told by amazing photographer Jewels, of Jeff and JewelsWhen Bridget from La Boheme Events and I met for the first time, it was obvious that we were meant to be together. Her idea of doing a “GOLD RUSH” themed Styled Shoot made my mind explode! We brainstormed with big eyes, giggles, and a cohesive vision that we knew we just HAD to make happen. Industrial yet rustic, vintage yet glam, and “Colorado”, but unique (“Rustic/Vintage” is all the rage ’round these parts).

We planned for months. Finding the perfect venue proved to be the most challenging aspect, but finally did with 2127 Larimer in Denver. Once we had that, all the other elements just fell into place. Every vendor was fabulous to work with and executed our vision perfectly!

The shoot was not without challenges. The main one being that we had to postpone the “outdoor portrait” part due to the fact that it snowed the entire day…the ENTIRE day. Despite this major obstacle, we were able to do those photos not long after. Another hurdle was over-came when the two models we had lined up decided to bail the night before the shoot. But again, the stars aligned and we were able to get “Jenna” & “Noah”, professionals who had no problem pretending to be Husband & Wife (Hannah Kimball & Caleb Gardner).

As the Photographer, it was important to me that the photos told a story – the story of Jenna & Noah, traveling cross-country by train, “Pikes Peak Or Bust”. Their chapel wedding – intimate and romantic. It was important to us that all of the details were accurate, if not totally authentic, and they HAD to be perfect!

gold rush_jeffandjewels

gold rush_jeffandjewels

gold rush photo shoot_jeffandjewels

gold rush_jeffandjewels

gold rush_jeffandjewels

gold rush_jeffandjewels

gold rush_jeffandjewels

gold rush_jeffandjewels

gold rush_jeffandjewels

gold rush_jeffandjewels

gold rush_jeffandjewels

gold rush_jeffandjewels

gold rush photo shoot_jeffandjewels

gold rush photo shoot_jeffandjewels

gold rush photo shoot_jeffandjewels

gold rush photo shoot_jeffandjewels

gold rush photo shoot_jeffandjewels

gold rush photo shoot_jeffandjewels

gold rush photo shoot_jeffandjewels

gold rush photo shoot_jeffandjewels

gold rush photo shoot_jeffandjewels

gold rush photo shoot_jeffandjewels

DETAILS

We loved the dress, a Waters & Waters, and the fabric made us think of an antique handkerchief. The western style suit complimented it perfectly. The model’s gold jewelry fancied up as only a first-class ladies’ would.

Plum Sage went all out with the flowers including chamomile, lavender, subtle sprays of wheat, deep red roses, and some spray painted thistles! The handle of the bouquet was perfectly wrapped in twine and lace.

The details of the table were just as stunning. A reclaimed wood beam ran the length of the table and held the many vessels that were the centerpiece – gold mercury glass, wooden boxes, and gold and glass candle holders. My favorite part was the rock candy in the champagne!

The Alter was built around draped muslin with dried flower bouquets, a cow skull, wagon wheel, whiskey barrel, and gold bars. The ceremony benches were made by Bridget’s husband (La Boheme Events), just for the shoot (thanks Jason).

Gold mica and gold “nuggets” adorned the aisle.

Thanks to Chairished Vintage Rentals, we had this fantastic wooden arch to hang things from for the Sweets table and Late Night Snack set ups.

Goodies from Leaf & Crumb Bakery included 2 kinds of cake pops: milk chocolate and peanut butter, dipped in chocolate, and vanilla bean and fresh strawberry dipped in white chocolate & gold sugar; mini apple strusel pies; vanilla and rooibos mini scones with vanilla glaze; 2 kinds of french macaroons: traditional with mild chocolate granache and butterscotch with marshmallow buttercream; milk chocolate whiskey mousse with Chantilly cream shooters; chamomile & thyme caramel; a 3 tiered Earl Grey cake with white chocolate Earl Grey swiss buttercream; and a pumpkin chai cake with cinnamon cream cheese filling covered in GOLD!

Relish Catering & Events did such a great job on the food that they had to prep the Late Night Snacks in a different room, so that we wouldn’t eat them all before they were photographed! They made us Mac & Cheese in the cutest little cast iron skillet you’ve ever seen; tomato bisque shooters with a grilled tilagio- prosciutto panini; truffle fries, and delicious kettle corn served in paper bags.

The “General Store” bar backdrop was the combination of a piece made by Bridget’s husband Jason, and an old door set up on some whiskey barrels. Page & Mason Invitations even made the most adorable beer and whiskey bottle labels! We even had Goldschlager shots egging you on with a “Pikes Peak or Bust” mantra.

We are absolutely THRILLED to share GOLD RUSH with you and hope you love it as much as we do…

VENDOR LOVE & DETAILS

Photography: Jeff & Jewels Photography
Photo Shoot Stylist and Planner: La Boheme Events 
Venue: 2127 Larimer
Catering: Relish Catering and Events 
Florist: Plum Sage
Bakery: Leaf and Crumb
Rentals: Colorado Party Rentals
Dress: d’Anelli Bridal
Suit: Alter Occasions
Printed Details: Page & Mason
Vintage Rentals: Chairished Vintage Rentals
Designer: Peggy Cox, cainrocks@msn.com
Hair and Make-up: Jeff & Jewels Photography

{thanks for images Jeff & Jewels Photography}

peach fruit nachos {recipe}

peach fruit nachos_jsorelle

Peaches are abundant and a fave at our local Farmer’s Market this summer. Marscapone cheese has been a favorite around our house too. Combine the two, and its pure decadence. This would make for a great dessert for the last summer BBQ on the calendar.

Peach Fruit Nachos
Ingredients:

Cinnamon-Sugar Candy Pecans, chopped {follow this recipe…it’s so so good. Save the leftovers for a sweet snack}
2 peaches
2 tablespoons butter
8 oz container Marscapone cheese
3 tablespoons sugar
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1-2 tablespoons honey
Puff Pastry or Pillsbury Crescent Roll

How To:
Bake Cinnamon Sugar Candy Pecans according to these instructions. I rubbed off all the excess sugar once the pecans baked, and then chopped the pecans for these nachos.
Roll out the Puff Pastry or Crescent Roll dough. Press in the seams {if any} and then cut into triangle-shaped chips.
Place the chips on the baking sheet, brush the top of each of them with butter, along with 1/4-1/2 tsp sprinkling of cinnamon and sugar mix, then bake according to packaging instructions.
Combine the Marscapone cheese with the honey and mix well.
Cut the skin off the peach and chop into small pieces.
Once cool, top with a large scoop of the Marscapone mixture, peaches and pecans.
If you feel extra sweet, drizzle with melted chocolate.
Devour.

peach fruit nachos_jsorelleblog

peach fruit nachos_jsorelle

peach fruit nachos_jsorelle

peach fruit nachos_jsorelle

{images via j. sorelle and adorable banner from The Banner Shoppe}