December 1, 2015

Ladies Night In with Spiked Mochaccinos


One of my favorite things about the cold weather, besides being able to wear sweaters and big fuzzy socks, is the excuse to stay inside and snuggle up. Don’t get me wrong, I love going out and being social, but sometimes after being out and about all day in New York City, you want to just go home and not have to deal with all of the people.  Know what I mean?

This is precisely why when Hills Bros.®  Cappuccino sent me their #CappTheNight Ladies Night In prize pack, I was SO EXCITED. I could not wait to open it up and check out all of the goodies that I could use to host the perfect night in with my favorite ladies.  When I did finally open it, I couldn’t believe all of the fun things that they included! In addition to three flavors of Hill Bros. Cappuccino Powder, the box had a deck of cards, a soothing face mask, some lemon butter cuticle cream, lip balm, gorgeous red nail polish, body lotion, fuzzy socks, gloves and a headband, and double mocha cappuccino K Cups. The perfect items for a night of pampering and relaxation!

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The Ladies Night In prize pack could not have arrived at a better time.  My best friend was coming to visit me from Boston for the weekend, and we needed a night in to catch up on life.  We decided to take advantage of the awesome stuff in the box, and to use the Hills Bros. Cappuccino powder to make some yummy winter cocktails!


After playing around a bit with the different flavor canisters of powdered mix that Hills Bros. sent me, I came up with a recipe for the Spiked French Vanilla Cinnamon Mochaccino.  Yep, it’s as delicious as it sounds.  I took a trip to my local Walmart to get all of the ingredients that I needed.  While browsing, I also found these awesome glass Irish coffee mugs, which were the perfect vessel to enjoy this new drink in!


Here’s what you’ll need:
-Canister of Hills Bros. French Vanilla Cappuccino Mix (available for purchase at your local Walmart or
-Your favorite Powdered Hot cocoa mix
-Pinch of cinnamon
-2 oz of Kahlua
-Whipped cream

Here’s what to do:
1) Combine 2 tbsp of the Hills Bros. French Vanilla Cappuccino mix and 2 tbsp of your favorite hot chocolate mix in each mug

2) Sprinkle some cinnamon into each mug
3) Add 8 fl oz hot water to each mug
4) Stir until all powered mixture has been blended into hot water
5) Add 1 oz of Kahlua to each mug (Kahlua is optional)
6) Stir to mix

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7) Add whipped cream


And there you have it.  A warm, sweet, delicious beverage with a little extra kick to enjoy on your girls night in. And it was super easy to make! We styled our drinks in the glass Irish coffee mugs that I mentioned before, with our favorite antler drink stirrers.  For a fun little extra detail (and a tasty snack) we added mini cinnamon rolls to each of the stirrers. How cute is that?


We stuck the leftover cinnamon rolls on these stunning red and black plaid plates, which fit perfectly with our drinks on our rustic wooden serving tray.  Since we had the wooden trays as a smooth surface to put our drinks on, we stuck a fur rug underneath everything so some extra, cozy detail.  To add some color and height to the whole setup, we set up red and black paper cones.


We also kept a bowl of peppermint, cinnamon stick and chocolate handy, to add some extra flavor or garnish to our drinks.  We used some of our favorite bamboo straws, striped in festive red and green, for stirring when necessary!


With our cocktails in hand to sip, my friend and I got to work painting our nails, watching movies and playing cards! We had an absolute blast just relaxing after a day of walking around the city in the chilly weather.


The best part? Hills Bros. Cappuccino is giving you the chance to win your own Ladies Night In prize pack! For more information on how to win and additional tips for how to host the perfect ladies night in, check out their #CappTheNight Sweepstakes info page.  You can enter to win by using the widget below!

Hill Bros. Cappuccino – #CappTheNight Sweepstakes


This post is sponsored by Hills Bros. Cappuccino, but all ideas and opinions are my own. 

xx, Abby
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November 20, 2015

Ready, Set, Weekend with Simple Beautiful Eating

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Wanna know who made the best dressed list this year?

You’re looking at her.

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When you want to give your salad a little va va voom, this is the way you go. Fresh mango purée, a little hint of spice and some poppyseeds to jack up the flavour of this delicious dressing.

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And this salad? Here’s the scoop with most salads I make on a daily basis and if you have been following along, you know that it’s a compilation of anything I have hanging around in the fridge.

Butter Lettuce – Look at the colour of of this? I honestly didn’t even need to edit the pictures because it was so beautifully GREEN!

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Raspberry Goat Cheese Balls – They are balls because I just grabbed the goat cheese and rolled little bits with my fingers. Not really genius but look how nice.

Red Grapefruit – I love using citrus in salads and the flavour went so well with the goat cheese.

Fresh Cranberries – Now. These were a bit tart but to be honest I didn’t care. They balanced off the sweet dressing and butter lettuce and I had to use them for something because they were sitting in my fridge from two previous shoots.

Dried blueberries – because I bought them at Costco and the bag was the size of a suitcase. What was I supposed to do with all those blueberries? Does anyone need some?

Blackberries – There were a few in the fridge and I know my husband bought them for some other reason, so I figured I would throw them in before they needed to be thrown out.

Radishes – I can’t remember when I bought these. Oh wait. Nope. Hang on. Last month? Do they last that long? I love my crisper, it keeps things so fresh. I wish I could live in a crisper. Would I last longer? Should I try that?

Yellow Peppers – I mean, they’re yellow so that’s enough reason to put them in with the rest of these ingredients, right?

Walnut Halves – These are seriously good for you. I put nuts in almost everything. Probably because I’m similar to a nut. Or I am a nut or whatever.

And then I got physalis again but don’t worry, it didn’t last long…I put it in all my salads this week.

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Ready to walk the red carpet?

And who are you wearing?

“Spicy Mango Poppyseed Dressing by Simply Beautiful Eating dahling”.

-1 large mango, peeled, pitted and roughly chopped
-¼ cup fresh lime or lemon juice
-¼ cup fresh orange juice or not from concentrate juice is fine too.
-2 tablespoons honey, maple syrup or agave
-½ teaspoon turmeric
-1 clove garlic
-½ teaspoon kosher salt
-⅓ cup extra virgin olive oil
-½ to 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper (depending on how spicy you want it)
-1 teaspoon poppyseeds
¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1) Combine mango, lime juice, orange juice, honey, turmeric, garlic and salt in a blender container. Puree on medium speed until smooth. Transfer to a medium size jar.
2) Add oil to the mixture in the jar in a slow, steady stream while stirring continuously with a fork or small whisk. This method ensures that the dressing doesn’t get murky but if you’re in a hurry you can absolutely just throw the whole shebang into the blender.
3) Add cayenne, poppyseeds and black pepper. Taste and add a bit more salt, if needed.
4) Stores in refrigerator for up to 1 week. Just give it a good shake before using.

xx, Debi
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November 16, 2015

Mandy’s Meals & More


Celebrating the bride to be? Looking for a healthy nibble to serve the ladies with the Shower Party in a Box that you just purchased?

Check out these ridiculously easy and surprisingly healthy appetizers. I would suggest dipping these puppies into a greek dressing of sorts.


Greek Feta Skewers
Olives (pitted preferably)
Tomato (I used a pretty firm tomato so that it stands up to the skewer)
Cucumber (I bought mini cucs)

Simply pile them high on a pretty skewer and call it a day! Your guests will be super impressed and relieved that they aren’t eating another typical bridal shower pastry.


Little Miss Party in a Box includes everything you need to entertain your friends with beautiful tableware and decor. All you need to add is the flowers, food and cocktails. Shop the Box and follow along with Mandy’s Meals & More for weekly recipes and food styling ideas!


xx, Mandy
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November 6, 2015

Ready, Set, Weekend with Simply Beautiful Eating

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I know what you’re thinking. You have seen these roses on this blog already.

But wait.

They may look familiar and they are VERY similar to the sweet roses apple tarts……FOOLED ya….they are totally different. I swapped out the sweet and brought in the savory with this recipe.

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Let me just say…..

I really loved them.

Not only are they beautiful, they are also perfect for entertaining because I know you are going to make this for the upcoming holiday season.

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Picture yourself walking out of the kitchen with these rosie posies. You are not only going to be given high fives, but EVERYONE…..yes EVERYONE will want your autograph.

Now here’s the true story behind these potato roses.

I truly believed they would be a cinch to make. The apple ones were a snap to throw together, so why wouldn’t these have worked out the same?

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Potatoes are not apples.

Potatoes are potatoes and have a mind of their own.

Here’s what happened with these and I’m only telling  you this so you won’t make the same mistakes I did.

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See these photos? They don’t lie. There was ONLY one potato rose that I actually thought was passable in the bunch. The rest of them looked like they were dropped on the floor. But then again. A dozen roses are never all the same right?

Ya….I’m starting to make excuses here.

Let me get right to the issue I had putting these together.

The potatoes were not sliced thinly enough. No fault to anyone but I have developed a fear of mandolines – this stems back to one of the veggie tarts I made and almost sliced all my fingers off along with the zucchinis. So I asked my hubby to slice the potatos. He asked me “how thin” and I said thin but not too thin. BIG HUGE DUMB MISTAKE.

They took forever to cook in the microwave. DUE TO THE FACT THAT THEY WERE NOT SLICED THINLY. Ugh.

So having these under-cooked and under bendy potatoes working against me, I had a heck of a time rolling them up in puff pastry. I’m going to give it to you straight. I screwed up the rosie posies BUT the Potato  G-ds were looking down upon me and for some reason they ended up turning out really really good.

Ring around the rosy

A pocket full of posies

Cut the potatoes thinner

and you’ll definitely have a WINNER.

Rose Potato Tarts

1 roll of puff pastry dough, thawed
1/4 cup roasted red pepper pesto (store bought or homemade)
2 tbls butter, melted
1 cup shredded jalapeno cheese (you can use any cheese I just happened to have jalapeno)
2 medium size red potatoes, sliced VERY THINLY, skin on
Fresh rosemary for garnish – optional
Grated parmesan cheese for garnish – optional

In a microwave safe bowl, cook potatoes on high heat until soft. They need to be very soft in order to allow them to roll up nicely in the puff pastry dough.

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Preheat oven to 375F.
Roll out the dough on a lightly floured board until it measures 10 X 12 inches. Width is 10, length is 12.
Slice dough into 6 equal pieces.

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Mix melted butter and pesto together in a small bowl.
Using a pastry brush, paint the dough with the pesto mixture.

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Drain cooked potatoes well and pat dry with paper towel.
Start layering your potatoes along the edge of the first strip of dough, leaving half the strip at the bottom so that you can fold it up when you’re ready.
Sprinkle with cheese, fold up and now roll them into a rose shape.

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Repeat with all the strips.
Place into a well greased muffin tin.
Brush with any leftover pesto/butter mixture.
Bake for 45 – 50 minutes or until nicely browned a crispy.

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Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Serve with fresh rosemary and grated parmesan if desired.

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See ya next week!

debi @simplybeautifuleating

xx, Debi
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November 2, 2015

Mandy’s Meals & More


As you know, American thanksgiving is coming up and that means TURKEY LEFTOVERS!
MMmmmmm Tuuurrrkey! I personally love the classic thanksgiving dinner specialties.
Gravy, stuffing, cranberry sauce…and the tryptophan nap that ensues.


My absolute favorite part of thanksgiving however, aside from getting to see all my American family members here in Toronto is…the leftovers!
Coming up with fun ways to include turkey into the next 12 meals is always a great challenge for us.

I came up with this “asian cranberry” turkey sandwich. If you prefer to eat this with no bread, make a salad and use the spread as dressing! Just add spinach or any other seasonal green.

Perfect to take to work the next day!



Asian Cranberry Turkey Sandwich

Focaccia Bread Toasted (or any other, ciabatta for example)
1 Tbsp chopped green onions
5-7 Basil leaves (cilantro would be great here too!)
1 Daikon ribboned (stay away from the coarse core)
Couple slices of roast turkey
2 Tbsp Fresh/Frozen Cranberries
2 Tbsp Hoisin
2 tbsp water

1. Toast bread in oven/toaster until crispy, carefully slice in half
2. In a small saucepan on high heat, boil water and cranberries until cranberries start to pop (about 3-4 minutes) lower heat to a simmer and let flavors marry for another 8-10 minutes, keep watch so that it does not burn. Stir liquid periodically.
3. Meanwhile, compile green onions, basil, daikon, and turkey on focaccia
4. Once the cranberries have popped and liquid has thickened remove from heat and spread on sandwich bread
5. Enjoy!




Can’t wait to hear all about your leftover adventures.

xx, Mandy
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