Notes from Swan's NestFrom Christy's mountain home and studio
It's Time To Celebrate Mardi Gras!
If you've been to a New Orleans Mardi Gras, you know what a memorable experience it can be. Mardi Gras – a celebration to prepare for Lent's 40 days of fasting before Easter – dates back to the Middle Ages. When French explorer Pierre le Moyne d'Iberville arrived in New Orleans in 1699, he brought the annual tradition of Mardi Gras with him.
Move Over Roast Turkey – Here Come The Sides!
For holidays and cozy gatherings with family and friends, it’s the side dishes that often make the meal. Experienced cooks know when side dishes include make-ahead components, even a large feast becomes doable. By shifting the focus to luscious side dishes prepared mostly in advance, hosting the Thanksgiving feast or any holiday gathering can flow more smoothly even when roasting a turkey.
That’s A Wrap! Behind The Scenes of A TV Cooking Series
During this beautiful autumn season when our sights are set on cozy meals with family and friends, season two of my national television cooking series At Home with Christy Rost continues to delight viewers. In late summer, my New York-based Eat This TV crew filmed twelve new episodes and thirty-four recipes in four jam-packed days at Swan’s Nest – our 1898 historic home in Breckenridge, Colorado.
Whimsical Halloween Cupcakes Inspired By Friend's Gift
A dear friend surprised me in early September with two packages of Halloween baking cups. One features orange pumpkins with friendly smiles; the others are black with shiny silver ghosts. My friend said she thought of me the moment she saw them and simply couldn't resist. Well, I couldn't resist sharing them with you! These darling baking cups became the inspiration for Ghostly Pumpkin Cupcakes – individual pumpkin and spice cakes decorated for ghosts and goblins of all ages.
Side Dishes – The Stars Of Summer Gatherings
Have you ever attended a summer barbecue or backyard picnic and come away raving about the mouthwatering display of side dishes? It’s true – from Memorial Day to Labor Day, side dishes are often the stars of summer gatherings. When guests bring their favorite side dish, their contributions can lead to the most amazing array of luscious flavors and oftentimes wonderful stories behind the recipes.
Jewel Tea Cookies Are Fit For A King
King Charles’ May 6th coronation is just days away but has been on my calendar for more than a month. I’ve been a follower of royal weddings and displays of British pageantry since Charles married Diana. My husband Randy had been transferred to his company’s Paris office only days before the royal wedding, and a small boutique hotel just two blocks from the Champs Elysees and Arc de Triomphe had become temporary quarters for our young family while we awaited the availability of the apartment we’d live in for the next year.
Cooking with Irish Whiskey
Ireland’s culinary traditions underwent a significant transformation in the 1980’s when Irish chefs trained in classic French cooking returned to their homeland and opened superb restaurants in the small towns of Kinsale in County Cork and Kenmare in County Kerry. These small, chef-owned restaurants set in motion not only local Irish tourism, but a foundation for fine dining and culinary excellence that continues throughout Ireland today.
A Valentine's Day Gift From The Heart
I’ve always been crazy about decorative cake pans, from the little train pan I chose for our son’s second birthday to bundt pans of all shapes. So, when Nordic Ware reached out to me recently about their new Floral Heart Bouquet Bundt pan, I was all in. Stamped with an intricate design featuring roses, daisies, and leaves, I set about creating a special cake recipe for this romantic Valentine pan.
By Design: Memorable Autumn Gatherings
As we gather this fall with family and friends, perhaps for the first time after a long pause, making the occasion special for everyone is worth the extra effort. While I adore casual, last-minute get-togethers, and in fact my husband and I did exactly that last night when we invited neighbors to join us for dessert on the patio at sunset, it can’t be overstated the enduring, cozy feeling of a thoughtfully planned gathering during this beautiful autumn season. So, join me as we make this celebration one to remember!
From Garden Harvest To Neighborhood Gathering: Greek Pasta & Garden Salad
I love fresh garden salads, especially when my summertime alpine vegetable garden is lush with a variety of greens I grow from seed. My garden always gets a late start compared to my friends and culinary colleagues who live in warmer parts of the country because at an altitude of 9,300 feet, it’s well into June before our nights are warm enough to support tender seedlings just beginning to sprout. In fact, last year we had several nights in July that dipped to 28 degrees in my garden, and even cool season lettuces performed poorly.