A Wedding in Oranges

We hosted a charming wedding at Bed & Breakfast yesterday. There was quite a bit to do to get ready and so, unfortunately, I didn’t have time to photograph the cake or the bride’s bouquet. I did take a few photos of some of the other flowers today, though. The bride loves orange, especially orange daisies. So I made her bouquet with four styles of orange gerbera daisies along with coppery-pink florists roses and peach-colored spray roses. The textures and colors were so cheerful that I used the same assortment of flowers to decorate the cake. We at The Morning Star wish the bride and groom a very happy future together!





Another Happy Wedding … Cake

Despite the frigid temperatures today, we had another beautiful outdoor wedding here at The Morning Star. The bride wore a stunning strapless gown and the groom was in dress military uniform. There were only six people at the service, so I made a miniature, but highly detailed, wedding cake. The three layer white butter cake was frosted with real vanilla buttercream and decorated with hundreds and hundreds of sugar pearls in varying sizes.  It took two of us about 45 minutes to place them all. The cake was then finished with fresh roses and the bride’s cake topper. I didn’t want to get in the photographer’s way, but I did manage to get a few pictures of the cake. This is one that I liked because the late afternoon sun’s rays seemed to imbue the scene with real emotion. May the bridge and groom have a truly happy future together!


A Beautiful Wedding

It was a beautiful wedding. The weather couldn’t have been nicer – sunny and in the 70’s. The bride and groom were so happy and so in love. Family and friends in attendance were delighted for the couple. The ladies in their gowns, and with their bouquets, were radiant. The men – dashing in their suits with boutonnieres. Afterward wine and hors d’oeuvres … then a horse-drawn carriage to carry people to dinner. So romantic! How lovely to have been a part of this special occasion! Thank you to Janet and Mark for letting us share in their happiness!

The garden beforehand …

Wedding flowers …

Mother, Bride, Daughter …

Just married …

The horses and carriage arrive …

Off to dinner …

… and they lived happily ever after!

Special of the Day: Spinach Omelette with Leeks

Everyday we offer a set breakfast menu plus a daily special. Today’s special was Spinach Omelette with Leeks.

The omelettes were filled with organic baby spinach, sautéed leeks, and shredded Monterey Jack and mild Cheddar cheeses. They were seasoned with a homemade herb salt made with herbs from our garden. The fresh leeks were sautéed in extra virgin olive oil with a splash of  Sauvignon Blanc and seasoned with the herb salt. They were finished with a twist of fresh ground green, black and pink peppercorns.

At the end of the meal, there were clean plates all around. Just what I like to see!

Anne’s Bicycle

One of my helpers showed up at work on this wonderful old bicycle today. She bought it at a garage sale a few years ago for $12. As soon as I saw it, I had to run outside, pop some flowers in the basket, and take a few photos. The sun was already brighter than ideal, but I like these pictures anyway. They capture part of the mood of the bed and breakfast. Obviously the main appeal of staying at a B & B is spending time in a lovely  home and feeling pampered. But, for many people, an important part of the experience is sitting back and letting life move at a slower pace. Thanks, Anne for riding this wonderful “vintage” bike to work.

Stuffed Pumpkin Butter French Toast

In yesterday’s Pumpkin Butter post, I said that I would be serving Pumpkin Butter for breakfast this morning.  Keeping my word, this morning’s special was Stuffed Pumpkin Butter French Toast. I know. There is nothing French about this dish; but it is what Americans call “French Toast”.  Whatever the origins … yum! It tastes like autumn is here!

For 2 servings:

4 thick slices cinnamon bread, edges trimmed

3 T. low-fat cream cheese

1 lg. egg

1/4 c. half-and-half

1/4 c. + 3 T. pumpkin butter, divided

3 T. maple syrup

1/4 c. pecans or walnuts

confectioner’s sugar for serving

(1) Spread cream cheese on 2 of the slices of bread. Top with remaining bread. Cut each “sandwich” diagonally into 2 triangles.

(2) Beat together egg, half-and-half, and 1/4 c.  of the pumpkin butter until perfectly smooth. Soak triangles in batter for 2 – 3 minutes on each side. Make sure that the edges are coated with batter.

(3) Preheat a skillet or grill over medium heat until a drop of water sizzles but does not skate across the surface. Coat with butter, canola oil, or vegetable spray. (Butter and vegetable spray work fine in a non-stick skillet, but when I make French Toast on our commercial grill, I use canola oil.) Grill bread on each side for several minutes or until egg is cooked and lightly browned. Remember to grill edges as well.

(4) Meanwhile, stir together remaining 3 T. of pumpkin butter and the maple syrup. Warm just before serving.

(5) Arrange nuts on 2 serving warm plates. Arrange French Toast. Drizzle with pumpkin syrup and then dust with confectioner’s sugar. Serve right away. Enjoy!

Zucchini Chickpea Risotto

One of our guests recently gave me a bunch of young zucchinis from her garden. (Thank you, Madonna!) After serving Zucchini Pancakes, Zucchini & Roasted Chicken Omelettes, and Zucchini Bread for breakfast over several different mornings, I decided that it was time for zucchini at a different meal. For lunch today,  I made Zucchini and Chickpea Risotto. It was a sunny and delicious dish for a gray, humid day.

Ingredients: Arborio Rice, Olive Oil, Minced Shallots, Vegetable Stock, Chickpeas, Zucchinis, Red Pepper Flakes, Dry White Wine, Butter, Lemon Juice, Grated Parmesan Cheese. For instructions on making risotto, see my earlier post Ah … Risotto. Have fun making your own risotto! Feel free to be creative!

One of my go-to wines for making risotto, and serving with it, is Pomelo Sauvignon Blanc, a crisp, citrusy white wine from California. Enjoy!