Don’t you love it when you pass by Pottery Barn or Crate and Barrel and you see those beautifully set tables. I do. I always think to myself, I want my table to look like that. So one day I did it. Here’s how:
The first thing is I decided what theme I wanted. Since it’s warm out, I wanted something bright and pretty. So I decided on a pastel floral theme. And I’m obsessed with this gold flatware that we got as a wedding gift from Crate and Barrel – so I knew I would be incorporating that. I think Target (pronounced Targé) has a less expensive version in their home section, so if you’re pinching the pennies, go for that.
This is what you have to do:
- Decide your theme. Already discussed… moving right along.
- Check around your house. Chances are you already have most of the elements that you need sitting around the house. Those fake flowers sitting on the coffee table that are gathering dust, grab those. The birthday party decorations that you shoved in the attic that you wondered what you would do with after the party, yep, go through that too. Check out these cool Ikea lanterns that we had leftover from our engagement party nearly three years ago.
- Repurpose, repurpose, repurpose. Use unconventional containers as accents and other decorative elements. For example, my flower display sits on one of my cake stands.
- Use color and cool patterns! I can’t stress this one enough. Color draws the eye and just makes everything so much prettier. The patterns make them interesting. I used color from the flowers and bowls and patterns from the plates and chargers. I also threw in a little texture from my glasses.
- Use candles. The soft glow can’t be beat! Again, I repurposed some fake ones that we had from our engagement party. I prefer real ones, but these old tealights were handy. If you do use real one, just remember to keep them out of the way of the kiddos and to blow them out when you’re done.
- Use cool placemats and napkins. I had to buy mine. But they were el-cheapo from Targé. Also, don’t foget to add tiny touches and personal details. I wrote sweet little messages and stuck them inside butterfly placecard holders.
- Arrange it all together and you have your very own fancy tablescape – on a dime!!!
So at the Cook residence with a 2-month old and all the other obligations of the day, good food is something that my husband and I look forward to. Aria is still a little young for us to be toting in and out of restaurants, so we tend to bring the restaurant home. And since both my husband and I looooove to cook, making burger night special is kind of a homerun and no-brainer.
These burgers were so quick and easy and most importantly delicious that I just knew that I needed to share it with you. So busy moms – and dads – this one’s for you. Holy hamburger night, Batman! This is gonna be good. Check the recipe:
- 2 lbs ground sirloin
- 1 diced jalapeño
- 1 diced small yellow onion
- 1 cup diced mushrooms
- 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1/2 tsp black pepper, plus a pinch
- hefty pinch dried basil
- 1/2 tsp sea salt, plus a pinch
- Combine all the vegetables (jalapeño, mushrooms, onion) and sautée until tender. Season with the pinches of sea salt and pepper.
- Add seasoned vegetables to ground sirloin. Add additional spices and blend well.
- Shape into 6 oz. hamburger patties.
- Grill to desired level of doneness. (Personally, I love a well-done burger, but if you’re a medium-well type of person – go for it!)
- Toast your bun and add your desired trimmings.
Here’s a little bonus too! What’s a good burger without delicious fries??? Those mouthwatering ones that are fresh cut with the skin on – oh my gosh, I might have to make some for lunch! This is easy too. All you need is a a few large russet potatoes, some vegetable oil and a fryer.
Directions for the fries:
- Slice the potatoes to resemble fries. Soak in cold water for about 10 minutes. Drain.
- The key to yummy, crispy french fries is to double fry them. Sounds crazy right? Trust me. Set your deep fryer to about 275°. Your first fry should be at this temperature for about 4 to 5 minutes. Just to quickly cook them. They shouldn’t have any color at all at this point. Drain the grease off the fries.
- Adjust your deep fryer to 300°. Now when you drop your fries, they’ll go until they get that beautiful golden color. Probably another 4 minutes.
I do hope you enjoy this as much as we do. Bon appetit.