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woo hoo!!

happy

let’s celebrate! One last quick thing before I sign off for the weekend…whether you are headed for the lake, the pool or to float the river, I hope you get to cool off, relax and enjoy your long weekend.

I’m leaving you with some fun, super easy recipes for your July 4th entertaining: a little bevy: Summer Beer, a little salty: Spicy Mixed Nuts and a little sweetness: Swimming Suit Sugar Cookies.

Have a great 4th! Cheers!!

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I am not a huge fan of beer but a few years ago a friend of mine, Daniel Vaughn introduced me to Summer Beer and I love it. Word to the Wise: Go easy on it friends…it will get you before you know it! These fab cookies and tasty mixed nuts are from the brilliant Kim Donlon. I got a sneak peak at these little bathing suit bites she made a few months back and I asked her to please make them for this holiday post. They are adorable and I had to share.

shopping list

eyeglasses, napkins, stir sticks and pails, Target (dollar bin! LOVE!!)
glassware, Crate and Barrel
silver tray, IKEA
notepads, Greenroom Eco

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more-suit

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recipes

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Summer Beer
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1 (6 ounce) can frozen Minute Maid limeade concentrate
1 (12 fluid ounce) can or bottle beer
12 fluid ounces vodka

Place limeade concentrate in a gallon pitcher. Measure vodka in the 12 ounce limeade can and add to the pitcher. Pour in the beer, mix well and serve.

**we used a star shaped cookie cutter to create the stars for our stir sticks to make it festive.

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Spiced Mixed Nuts
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2 1/2 mixed whole almonds, raw cashews and/or pecans
2 tablespoons water
2 tablespoons sugar
2 teaspoons chili powder
1/2 teaspoon chipolte powder
1 teaspoon salt (garlic salt optional)

Preheat oven to 300°F. Place mixed nuts in large bowl. Heat water in small saucepan over medium heat. Add sugar, chili powder and chipolte to taste and stir until aromatic, about 15 seconds. Pour over mixed nuts. Add salt and stir to blend. Transfer to baking pan. Bake until mixed nuts are toasted, stirring occasionally, about 20 – 25 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature. (Can be made 5 days ahead. Cover and store at room temperature.)

Notes….nuts can be used in a salad…cookie dough is easy to make and impossible to mess up

Yield:  approximately 2 1/2 cups

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No Fail Sugar Cookies
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This recipe is great when using complex cookie cutters. The dough holds its shape and won’t spread during baking. Make sure you let your oven preheat for at least 30 minutes before baking these or any other cookies.

2 cups butter
2 cups sugar
2 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract, almond or desired flavoring
6 cups flour
3 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt

Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs and vanilla. Mix well. Mix dry ingredients and add a little at a time to butter mixture. Mix until flour is completely incorporated and the dough comes together.

Chill for 1 to 2 hours.

Roll to desired thickness and cut into desired shapes. Bake on ungreased baking sheet at 350 degrees for 8 to 10 minutes or until just beginning to turn brown around the edges.

Yield:  approximately 5-dozen 3” cookies.

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Antonia’s Royal Icing
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This icing is mixed to a stiff consistency for outlining cookies, then can be thinned with warm water to fill in the cookie shape.  This icing can be kept at room temperature in an air-sealed container two weeks, with a good re-mixing before you use it again.

6 oz (3/4 cup) of warm water
5 Tablespoons meringue powder
1 teaspoon cream of tartar
2 pounds powdered sugar

In mixer bowl, pour in the warm water and the meringue powder. Mix it with a whisk by hand until it is frothy and thickened, about 30 seconds.

Add the cream of tartar and mix for 30 seconds more.

Pour in all the powdered sugar at once and place the bowl on the mixer.

Using the paddle attachment on the LOWEST speed, mix slowly for a full 10 minutes. Icing will get thick and creamy. Thin the icing with small amounts of warm water to reach the desired consistency.  Tint the icing with food coloring as desired.

Cover the bowl with a damp towel to prevent crusting and drying.

Yield:  approximately 6 cups of icing

glasses

5 Responses to “woo hoo!!”

  1. Summer says:

    Great! Love cookies.=D Have a great weekend too.=D

  2. mb says:

    The summer beer recipe is like the British “shandy” that you find in the pubs in the UK during the summer. Yum. Hope your Fourth is fabulous.

  3. Kim Donlon says:

    Sam/Daniel, your summer beer recipe is my new favorite drink! A half-dozen of us spent the 4th in the pool sipping (ok, guzzling) them. Everyone wanted the recipe — our cabana boy twisted it a little by adding a splash of Cointreau and club soda.

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