white russian martini

IMG_5469Is it me or does summer seem like a flurry of activity? Justin and I have had something nearly every weekend so far—birthdays, baby showers, wedding showers, weddings, family reunions. At least it’s fun activities! The summer is flying by.

I usually have a back log of recipes to post, but the unusually large amount of flops I’ve made lately have caused my queue to get rather low. You never know what you’re getting into when you try a new recipe. Some of my recent flops include foods I thought would be surefire hits like jalapeno mac and cheese with bacon (sounds like it’d be awesome, right?), a quick coffee cake (I mean, it’s cake. How do you mess up cake?), and odd-tasting manicotti (mentioned in a previous post). It’s not that these recipes were horrible; it’s just that they weren’t good. Going through all the work to try a new recipe that doesn’t turn out or that is just mediocre is so disappointing, but it is also a valuable part of the learning experience. I usually follow recipes exactly on the first try, and if I like how it turns out well enough, I’ll tweak the recipe for next time. I am always thinking of what I might have done differently to get a better turn out.

For this week’s post I perused my liquor cabinet, and there was the Kahlua smiling back at me. Yes, I am unabashedly posting a recipe for the three-ingredient classic martini: the White Russian. This was my drink of choice in college. My college boyfriend even bought me a shirt that said, “I like White Russians,” honoring my affinity for the drink, as well as Sasha Kaun, the large white Russian player we had on the KU basketball team then. You can use any kind of milk for this martini except for skim as skim milks tends to be less creamy and more watery. Enjoy!


2 ounces vodka

1 ounce Kahlua

1-2 ounces Half and half, heavy cream, or milk

Torani dark chocolate sauce (optional), for garnishing


Mix together and stir.

peach iced tea with mint


Are there certain foods (or drinks) you can’t stay away from? I can’t stay away from ice cream, white chocolate, Nutella, anything cookies & cream-flavored, anything coffee-flavored… well, anything with SUGAR! (I mean, if we’re being honest…) pasta, pizza, potatoes, CHEESE!, bread (Hmm…this list is more extensive than I realized), and this peach iced tea. It’s real good. Like I forget how many glasses I’ve had. I am guzzling it like there’s no tomorrow. Good thing I didn’t add liquor to it! I’d probably be under the table right now inarticulately crooning Les Miserables songs or adding obscure movies I will never watch to my Netflix queue (Did you know there’s a documentary on Feng Shui on there? Who knew?)

The best thing about this recipe, other than the peachy flavor, is how easy it is. You’re basically making the tea and then adding homemade peach simple syrup to it. The longer the peach and mint flavors have time to coalesce in the refrigerator, the more flavorful they’ll be. Drink up!

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birthday beer: black velvet

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Today is my birthday! I woke up this morning feeling much wiser than before as if information had been downloaded to my brain like in The Matrix. OK, not really. I woke up in my usual sleepy stupor, dragged myself to the shower, threw on some makeup, ran a brush through my hair, and called it good. This is my typical morning.  I have never been a morning person, but luckily I married someone who is! Anyway, onto my annual birthday drink! Continue reading “birthday beer: black velvet”

boozy butter beer

butter beer

Yesterday marked the 20th anniversary of the first release of the J.K. Rowling’s book, Harry Potter and the Philosophers’ Stone. I can’t believe it’s been 20 years already! In celebration of the book’s first release, I’m posting my favorite Butter Beer recipe. Justin and I tried several different recipes of butter beer (many of which use pumpkin beer), but we both concluded that this was by far the best. It tastes like the Butter Beer we tried at the Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Studios. And it’s super easy to make!

Changing subjects—-sometimes Justin cracks me up on the things he becomes indignant about. And recently one of those things is the use of the word “dollop.” He doesn’t like the word because it’s not a specific unit of measurement so he sees it as not very helpful in guiding the reader. I like the use of the word because it gives the reader the option of adding as much or as little as he or she wants. So whether your dollop of whipped cream is a little spoonful or a whole laddleful, enjoy this refreshing beverage!
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