A Wheelhouse Picnic

 

Boating Picnic

Our weather has been typical of summer with

 late afternoon and evening pop-up storms,

so picnicking under the cover of the dock is the

 next best thing to a floating picnic on the pontoon!

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I packed a Wheelhouse Picnic for

light and easy summer dining. . .

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Also one that’s casual and make-ahead

that can be enjoyed anywhere.

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An antipasto platter with marinated artichokes, olives,

assorted meat and cheese and Marcona almonds.

Life preserver not required  :)

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Some crackers and fruit. . .

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And some wine.

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Wheelhouse \ Wheel”house’\, n. (Naut.)

The room on the bridge of a ship from where you steer. . .

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. .  .providing you with control and a clear view of what is coming ahead.

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Area of expertise, a particular skill.

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and Chardonnay :)

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Wheelhouse Picnic Details:

Dishes/Food Network™ Cafe Red & Blue Dinnerware, Kohl’s

Goblets/ Dollar Tree

Flatware & Napkins/ World Market

Napkin Rings, Chargers/ HomeGoods

Buoys, Appetizer Boats, Galvanized Tray/ Pottery Barn, several years ago

Flatware, plates, chargers and napkin rings not required for Wheelhouse picnic but I couldn’t resist :)

The Novel Bakers return September 8th for Picnic Week

with themed picnics, recipes, inspiration and guest bakers!

Pack a Picnic: Recipes and Inspiration for a Portable Feast!

Until then if you’re looking for picnic

inspiration you can find some HERE.

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“A picnic is more than eating a meal,

it’s a pleasurable state of mind.”

~ DeeDee Stovel, Picnic

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Wishing you Smooth Sailing & Happy Picnicking

in your wheelhouse the rest of the summer!

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Peach and Prosciutto Crostini with Basil and Goat Cheese

Peach and Prosciutto with Basil & Goat Cheese

Peach and Prosciutto Crostini with Basil and Goat Cheese is a savory

 and fresh way to enjoy summer peaches.

Sweet and salty, tangy and creamy, just the right combination of flavors

for a light summer appetizer and to enjoy with a glass of wine!

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I found this recipe searching for a savory way to use peaches. I made a couple of changes using a mixture of goat cheese and Neufchatel and added a wee bit of honey to sweeten and balance the tangy goat cheese.

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 This is more of a procedure than a recipe, feel to adjust or substitute cheeses to your taste.

 I used a ratio of one to one, goat cheese to Neufchatel (or light cream cheese).

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Peach and Prosciutto Crostini with Basil and Goat Cheese,

adapted from Cooking Light

Ingredients

 French bread baguette, cut diagonally

2 ounces goat cheese

2 ounces Neufchatel (light cream cheese), softened

1 tablespoon honey

1 tablespoon coarsely chopped fresh basil, plus more for garnish

 Salt & Pepper to taste

Peaches, cut into wedges

Prosciutto, cut into thin slices

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Lightly coat baguette slices with olive oil and toast or grill (I used a panini press). Combine goat cheese, Neufchatel, and honey in a small bowl. Stir in 1 tablespoon basil. Spread cheese mixture evenly among bread slices.

Wrap each peach wedge with a piece of prosciutto. Top each bread slice with wrapped peach wedge. Season with salt & pepper to taste and garnish with basil. Serve immediately.

Notes: Adjust the ratio of cheeses to your taste. You can toast the baguette slices and combine the cheese mixture in advance, but assemble just before serving for the best results.

You can find a printable recipe if you need one, HERE.

Hope you’re savoring the flavors of summer!

Peach and Proscuitto Crostini with Basil & Goat Cheese

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A Flower Fix, Black-eyed Susans and Winners!

 

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I’m always looking for a flower fix!

Black-eyed Susans are growing wild, popping up in fields

 and alongside roadways with

a delightful burst of cheery yellow color!

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 I stopped to gather some flowers, free for the picking,

to fill some jars and a vase for the Potting Shed.

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Along with Black-eyed Susan, I cut some goldenrod,

and some lespedeza, with its clusters of pea-like pink blooms,

(identified by a reader last year, thank you Janet :)

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The Nature Library~ Wild Flowers and Garden Flowers,

copyright 1926

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“So very many weeds having come to our Eastern shores from Europe,

and marched father and farther west year by year, it is but fair that

Black-eyed Susan, a native of Western clover fields,

should travel toward the Atlantic in bundles of hay whenever she gets

the chance to repay Eastern farmers in their own coin.”

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In celebration of Bee Season, Garden Bouquets

and Summertime Sipping. . .

The Bee's Knees Lavender Lemonade Cocktail

. . .The winners of May All Your Weeds *Bee* Wildflowers Giveaway

and Quattro Stagioni Canning Jars

are Sandi Allen and Michelle Wing!

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Congratulations to you both,

I’ll contact you by email and get your jars to you.

Thanks to all who entered and May All Your Weeds *Bee* Wildflowers!

Black-eyed Susan Potting Shed

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Home is Where the Potting Shed Is

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I received this adorable handpainted jar with

Home is Where the Potting Shed is on it.

Home is Where the Potting Shed Is

 It’s a mini painted replica of my Potting Shed, by Jenna at

 the Painted Apron with oh-so-fun personalized details!

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She added cedar shake siding and red front door.

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Along with little details that

I love including pumpkins. . .

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 And included my windows and window box. . .

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Note: Her painted flowers look better than my planted ones. . . :)

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She added a watering can. . .

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And chalkboard door

and even included bees.

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I filled my handpainted jar with bird seed!

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If you haven’t met Jenna, I know you’ll want visit the Painted Apron

where she is always busy painting or creating, cooking up a recipe or table!

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 She is currently sharing her painted glassware in a Giveaway

in celebration of her Blogaversary!

You can enter to win a set of 4 glasses with your choice of

Halloween, Thanksgiving or Christmas designs through August 28th, HERE.

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You’ll also find a Happy Harvest of her work and painted designs

at JMdesigns Gallery HERE.

Thank you Jenna for my handpainted jar and sharing your talent!!

JMdesigns Gallery Potting Shed Jar

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At the Table: Mikasa Belmont Green Stalks

 

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I’m at the table with green stalks of bamboo and Belmont Green Stalks,

Mikasa Gourmet Basics Dinnerware.

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 Organic in design, Belmont Green Stalks Dinnerware

is a handcrafted collection, with

 the reactive glaze providing a natural variation

in color, adding to the handcrafted appeal.

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Leafy stalks provide pattern and color on

the salad plates of the stoneware.

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Lucky Bamboo was growing in stalks at Lowe’s,

making for a quick and easy centerpiece

in a green vase, filled with an assortment

of dried beans and lentils for texture and color.

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A floral patterned cloth with green and blue leafy blooms

is layered with striated placemats,

providing a little texture and contrast

 for the round stoneware plates.

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Enjoy 20% off one Belmont item through August 31st,
with the link below (some exclusions apply):

www.mikasa.com/source?src=MARYMBLOGMKBT201

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Table Details:

*Dinnerware/ Belmont Round Green Stalks by Mikasa Gourmet Basics

*Flatware/ Mikasa Natasha

*Stemware/ Ridgefield All Purpose Glass, Mikasa

Green Vase & Napkin Rings/ Pottery Barn, several years ago

Placemats/  Kohl’s

Tablecloth & Napkins, Threshold / Target

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*Lifetime Brands’ products have been provided free of charge in exchange for promotional consideration.

Mikasa Gourmet Basics Belmont Green Stalks

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Sitting on the Dock of the Lake

Dock Time with Chloe and Gracie

Sitting on the dock of the lake is

the next best thing to a boat ride.

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The dock gives us some cover and shelter if the sun is too hot

or there is a threat of storms so we can still get our water fix.

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Some of us like to

look at the water…

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Some of us like to

play in the water…

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And some of us like

to drink the water.

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It looks pretty peaceful & relaxing until

you realize this is our soundtrack:

 

 Chloe & Gracie wish you a

peaceful & relaxing Sunday :)

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Thank you for your visit!

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Barn Love and Mountains Views

Barn Love NC Mountains

We spent the weekend in the NC mountains

recently to escape the heat.

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In addition to wine-ing a bit,

we enjoyed the scenery

along the Blue Ridge Parkway.

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I’m sharing some barn love

and mountain views. . .

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I wish I could share the lower temps and humidity too. . . :)

Please have a seat and enjoy!

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I made a fun discovery after I got home

of a Barn Quilt Trail Map,

you can click on a state, and then county

if you want to find barn quilts!

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After a little searching I found this pattern

is a Carpenter’s Wheel Quilt pattern.

You can read about the Quilt Trail History, here.

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Hope you’re staying

cool this summer!

Blowing Rock and Grandfather Mountain

Thank you for your visit!

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Watermelon Mojito with Mint Simple Syrup!

Watermelon Mojito with Mint Simple Syrup

Watermelon Mojito with Mint Simple Syrup is

a refreshing cocktail for summertime sipping!

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This cocktail (or mocktail), starts with fresh watermelon puree!

To make your puree, cut your watermelon into chunks and toss in a blender and puree until smooth. Pass watermelon through a strainer, discarding pulp and reserving watermelon liquid. Keep watermelon puree in the fridge to mix with sparkling water/soda or lemonade.

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A traditional mojito is made by muddling mint leaves with sugar and lime. Instead of muddling your mint leaves, make an easy mint-infused simple syrup to keep on hand in the refrigerator.

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Herb-infused simple syrups are easy to mix for flavoring and sweetening your beverages at the same time! Simple syrups are simply equal parts water and sugar, heating until sugar is dissolved. They will keep in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.

 Try mint, rosemary or lavender-infused syrup to add to your lemonade, iced tea or cocktail. Directions here.

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Watermelon Mojito with Mint Simple Syrup

To ice filled glass add:

1/2 cup (4 ounces) fresh watermelon puree

Juice of half a lime

1 1/2 – 2 ounces light rum

2 ounces mint simple syrup, or to taste

Sparkling water or soda to top off, (I used a lime flavored sparkling water)

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Garnish with mint, lime or watermelon wedge if desired

For a mocktail, omit rum and add additional sparkling water/soda

Stir, Sip and Enjoy!

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For more summer watermelon recipes

 click on the links for a taste!

Watermelon Gazpacho

Watermelon Gazpacho

Watermelon Goat Cheese Bites

Goat Cheese-Melon Party Bites

Shrimp Salad over Zesty Watermelon

Shrimp Salad over Zesty Watermelon

Watermelon Fish Centerpiece

Catch & Release a

Watermelon Fish Centerpiece

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In celebration of Bee Season, Garden Bouquets and

 Summertime Sipping, I’m giving away 2 sets of 4

Quattro Stagioni Canning Jars!

To enter to win, leave a comment HERE.

Winners will be chosen August 8th.

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Foodie Friday

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‘Just Peachy’ Crab Salad with Avocado!

Crab Salad with Peaches and Avocados

‘Just Peachy’ Crab Salad with Avocado is perfect for a summer appetizer or light dinner and pretty enough to serve company!

Summer peaches and creamy avocado are a delicious complement to fresh and naturally sweet crabmeat that has a touch of ocean saltiness!

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I found this recipe in my search for a salad using summer peaches. I knew this was a keeper recipe when I saw it was from Chef Virginia Willis, a contributing editor for Southern Living Magazine!

‘Just Peachy’ Crab Salad with Avocado,

adapted from Southern Living

Yield: Makes 6 servings

The crab salad can be made ahead, but the avocado and peach layers are best prepared just before serving.

Peach and Avocado Crab Salad

Ingredients

1 pound fresh jumbo lump crabmeat

2 tablespoons lemon zest

1 tablespoon mayonnaise

1 teaspoon Dijon mustard

5 tablespoons fresh lemon juice, divided

1/2 jalapeño pepper, seeded and finely diced

1/4 cup finely diced celery

2 green onions, finely chopped

Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

5 to 6 medium peaches, unpeeled and coarsely chopped

2 tablespoons honey

3 medium avocados, diced

Arugula

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Preparation

Pick crabmeat, removing any bits of shell. Whisk together lemon zest, mayonnaise, Dijon mustard and 1 Tbsp. lemon juice. Fold in jalapeño, celery, green onion, and crabmeat, gently, using a rubber spatula. Season with kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste.

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Stir together peaches and remaining 4 Tbsp. lemon juice. Reserve 3 cups peach mixture. Pulse honey and remaining peach mixture in a food processor until smooth. Season pureed peach mixture with kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste.

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Spoon 1/4 cup pureed peach mixture onto a chilled plate. Place a 3 1/2-inch round cutter in center of peach mixture on plate.  (A clean, empty tuna can with both ends removed can be substituted for a cookie cutter if you don’t have the right size.) Spoon one-sixth of diced avocados and 1/2 cup reserved chopped peach mixture into cutter, packing each layer firmly and sprinkling with kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste.

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Top with about 1/2 cup crab mixture. Carefully remove cutter from plate. Repeat procedure with remaining pureed peach mixture, avocado, chopped peach mixture, and crab mixture. Arrange desired amount of arugula around each layered salad; serve immediately.

You can find a printable recipe here.

Crab Salad with Peaches and Avocados

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A Return to Historic Charleston, SC

Historic Charleston South Carolina

We find ourselves returning to Charleston, SC for a weekend visit a couple of times a year. No matter how many times I visit, I always enjoy taking a stroll in the early morning hours with my camera.

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We park the car once we arrive, walking to our destinations and dinner. Charleston is a foodie’s paradise and we enjoy touring with our taste buds and attempt to walk off some of the calories we consume!

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I enjoy peeking through the wrought iron gates

to admire the stately homes and

occasionally getting a glimpse of a garden. . .

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If you enjoy history, antebellum homes, and great food,

you’ll be charmed by the hospitality

and Southern flavor of Charleston!

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I would suggest visiting when both the humidity

and temps are not in the 90s though. . .

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Despite the heat, I’m always amazed at the

 flowers thriving in the window boxes. . .

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Especially since I look like a wilted flower

within 30 minutes of my arrival :)

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I hope you enjoy the scenery in the comfort of your air conditioning! This post is photo heavy, alas I have no restraint with the camera or at the table when I visit there :)

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Charleston is known as The Holy City, due to the numerous church steeples that can be seen rising above the otherwise low-rise skyline.

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You can stroll along and enjoy a visit

to Charleston in December here.

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