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Summer Recipes

The Ultimate Caprese Salad Board | Entertaining ideas, party appetizers, cocktail recipes, party ideas and more from @cydconverse

The Ultimate Caprese Salad Board

Over the last few years I’ve been really into arranging a bunch of food on a board and serving it up as a casual weeknight dinner, a great party appetizer or a delicious mid-afternoon snack on a weekend. Something about food on a board is just so damn enjoyable, and people naturally seem to love food that’s interactive, which is why this one would make such a good addition to your next party. People love a great cheese board, but this is spin on the classic is even better with an excess of good fresh mozzarella and¬†burrata, loaded up with a variety of tomatoes. Drizzle everything with a good olive oil, max out on fresh basil, then sprinkle the whole mess with yummy coarse grain sea salt and you’re in business.

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Strawberry Feta Bruschetta Recipe | Entertaining ideas, party appetizers, cocktail recipes, party ideas and more from @cydconverse

Strawberry Feta Bruschetta

We had a whirlwind of a weekend, hosting two parties and inviting a combined total of over 60 people through the house over the last two days. This morning it is dark and stormy, and I rolled out of bed a solid hour later than usual. I guess 48 hours of intense back-to-back entertaining will do that to you! When we’re throwing parties my rule of thumb is to keep the food simple, but also a touch unexpected and fun. It makes people feel special and gets them really excited to try something new. This strawberry feta bruschetta recipe perfectly fits that bill! It’s a departure from the tomato-based classic, but it’s equally, if not more, delicious. Plus, strawberries and feta always taste amazing together. In terms of prep, it’s also very easy! If you can dice up berries, you can feel confident serving this bruschetta at your next get together.

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Peanut Butter + Jelly Ice Cream Sandwiches | Summer desserts, homemade ice cream sandwiches, entertaining tips, party ideas and more from @cydconverse

Peanut Butter + Jelly Ice Cream Sandwiches

Over the weekend I made a whirlwind 62 hour trip to Round Top, Texas and back. I’ve been working on a couple of really huge projects behind the scenes, I haven’t washed my hair in at least three days (dry shampoo, I love you), and my feet are still slightly swollen from traveling and lack of sleep over the last week. All of this to say, these peanut butter and jelly ice cream sandwiches are delicious and exactly what you need when you’re exhausted and missing a few of the usually prominent bones on the tops of your feet. An instant pick-me-up! To keep things simple, you can use a cookie mix here. To keep things delicious, I highly suggest making the strawberry jam homemade. Then just smash cookies and ice cream together and eat them right away, or wrap them and stash them in the freezer where they’ll keep for a few days.

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4th of July Desserts: Red, White and Blue Berry Fruit Pizza | 4th of July recipes, entertaining tips, party ideas, 4th of July ideas and more from @cydconverse

Americana Sugar Cookie Fruit Pizza

Ok, admittedly I’m kind of a sucker for a well done red, white and blue 4th of July dessert. Does it get any more patriotic than that? I’m saying no! I made this sugar cookie fruit pizza with rows of blueberries and strawberries intended to mimic some kind of cool, vintage Americana quilt and I’m kind of thinking I hit the nail on the head with this one. (Feel free to chime in and commend my efforts should you feel so inclined!) The topping is a whipped cream and cream cheese combo spread over top of a sugar cookie base. A sugar cookie base that I made from a mix, because simple is as simple does and I wanted this one to be especially easy and quick for you to pull off. The result is a sincerely tasty dessert that you can bring together in under an hour, and you can even prep the berries and the cookie crust the night before. This also makes a perfect bring-along dessert if you’re attending a 4th of July party instead of hosting so make sure you give this a try! You’ll love it. Promise.

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4th of July Desserts: Sprinkle Dipped Ice Cream Cones | Follow @cydconverse for more entertaining ideas, recipes, cocktail recipes, party themes and more!

Sprinkle Dipped Red, White + Blue 4th of July Ice Cream Cones

After Christmas, my favorite holiday is easily the 4th of July. There’s just nothing more festive to me than fireworks and the general summer-inspired glee that comes along with celebrating the 4th. Even now as an adult, the grand finale of any fireworks display makes me clap with excitement, because basically I am a five year old kid on the inside. This year I’m excited about hanging red, white and blue bunting along our front porch for the first time, and I’m also excited about these ice cream cones. Nothing is quite as American as red, white and blue sprinkle dipped 4th of July ice cream cones, am I right? These are such a fun way to serve up even just a simple scoop or two of vanilla ice cream, and you can prep the cones the day before. All you need are sugar cones, white chocolate and all the cool sprinkles you can find. Stay tuned for more fun 4th of July ideas! It’s about to get mighty patriotic about these parts.

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Prosciutto Wrapped Asparagus Recipe | Easy party appetizers, cocktail recipes, entertaining tips, party ideas and more from @cydconverse

Prosciutto Wrapped Asparagus

You guys know by now that I’m a vegetarian and have been for well over a decade, so you may be wondering why I’m serving you up an appetizer today that is the very definition of un-vegetarian. It turns out though that this prosciutto wrapped asparagus was a huge hit when I made it on a whim on Easter and at the time Bob made me promise I’d make it again and also that I’d share it with you since it was a huge hit. You know you have a winner on your hands when you write a blog for a living and the family is declaring, “You need to post this!” while they’re enjoying something new you just made. Bob is actually the one who suggested this would make a great Father’s Day appetizer since it could also be made on the grill. So there you go, the official word on this recipe, according to gentleman of the household.

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Dragon Fruit Smoothie Recipe | 12 Summer Smoothies plus loads of party recipes, entertaining tips, cocktail recipes and more from @cydconverse

12 Super Summery Smoothie Recipes

I’ve been in such a weird food rut lately, which isn’t very typical for me and I’m starting to feel it. At the moment I’ve basically been opting for some variation of avocado toast (generally on naan bread) as often as seems reasonable, because I’m just so bored with everything else. I love to cook, but behind the scenes I’ve been juggling a lot of huge projects (that I really really hope I can share with you in the coming weeks) so I’ve been eating on the fly more often. Frankly, I usually devote most of the food prep time to making meals for Em and then I just grab whatever is handy. This week I am planning to stock up on a bunch of fruit, frozen and fresh, so I can start working more smoothies into the routine.

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Blackberry Cucumber Caprese Skewers

There’s something about food served on sticks that people seem to instantly love. Case in point, the antipasto skewers I shared last year were one of your run away favorite posts of the year! (And, guys, they’re so damn tasty!) Spearing yummy little bites onto sticks is also a super easy way to serve up delicious, crowd-pleasing party appetizers. You can make them in advance, mix and match a million different flavor combinations and keep everyone begging for more.

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How to Make Berry + Herb Ice Cubes

Hi, friends and happy Monday! I hope you had a great weekend. Did you do anything fun? Try any new recipes? Watch any good movies? Last Saturday we tore up our kitchen for what was intended to be a relatively quick and inexpensive interim renovation, but which is proving to be a much more involved project than we anticipated. Of course. So more than a week later my house is a certified renovation zone once again after taking a much needed break from any major projects since last fall when we wrapped up our living room renovation.

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Red Pepper + Chive Deviled Eggs

Happy Monday, friends! I hope everyone had a beautiful weekend. After a long, gray week of nonstop rain, we finally had an abundance of sunshine this weekend and it felt incredible. And now it’s the run up to Easter! Naturally no Easter festivities are properly complete without a killer deviled eggs recipe, so today I’m serving up just that. To be honest, my mom tends to be the deviled egg maker in our family, but we love to make them at home from time to time, too.

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The Best Homemade Lemonade Recipes | Brunch recipes, Easter brunch ideas, entertaining tips, party ideas and more from @cydconverse

Three Homemade Lemonade Recipes

With Easter coming up next week, I’m admittedly in full-on brunch mode. Actually, because I consider any day ending in y a perfect reason to do brunch, Easter may well not have anything to do with it, but regardless, brunch has been on my mind a lot lately. So, too, is the promise of warmer days in the coming months, all of which has converged to inspire this trio of homemade lemonade recipes! Made with Truvia Natural Sweetener, they’re a delicious reduced sugar alternative to the traditional, and completely worthy of serving your family alongside Easter brunch.

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