A Polished Palate

Living a tasteful life

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Trip Planning| And Our Next Stop Is.....

ITALY!!! It still hasn't really sunk in yet, but we are planning a trip along the Amalfi Coast and I couldn't be more excited! 

Every year my husband and I plan a getaway in celebration of our wedding anniversary in October. The travel bug started when we made the trip to St. Lucia for our honeymoon. We had such an amazing time that it only seemed fitting to continue celebrating our anniversaries in places that have been on our bucket list. You can read more about our first, second and third anniversary trips by following the links. Our two year anniversary trip was a big one so we decided to not go so far last year. This year we decided it was time for another big one and we won't be taking the trip alone.  We are so excited to be traveling with some of our best friends, Melissa and Jay! We recently traveled with them to New Orleans and can't wait for our next adventure. 

Right now our rough agenda includes stops in Positano, Ravello, Capri and Tuscany. So, please send all the travel tips, advice, places to eat, tour, visit, do, see, you name it! I love hearing firsthand from others who have visited! I'm welcoming any and all information I can get. Grazie!!


Thursday, July 13, 2017

VIIcode: Skincare for Your Eyes | A Review

I'm always on the search for new skin care products that are safe and effective. There's no time like the present to preserve and protect your youth, right? For a while I was on a mission to find the perfect night time facial treatment to awaken and moisturize leaving my skin, leaving my face with a glow. My struggle is with dark circles under my eyes, which is why I was excited to give the VIIcode eye oxygen masks a try. Of course, getting extra sleep and drinking more water both assist with dark under eyes, but let's be honest, extra sleep and more water don't always do the trick. 
I tried out the VIIcode oxygen eye masks a try and was pleasantly surprised with the results. To be honest, I'm sometimes a skeptic of these things but I really loved this product. The oxygen eye masks come individually wrapped in a box of six. Unlike some other masks, this non-irritating formula is designed for an eight-hour wear overnight. Something that works while I'm sleeping - sign me up! With key ingredients, grape seed oil, seaweed, and white tea, the masks have a gel-like coating that feels cool and refreshing when applied under the eyes. Apply them to a clean face before bed and let them do their magic! 
When I woke up the next morning and pulled them off I could see a slight difference in the reduction of puffiness and dark color, but the most prominent result for me was the way my under eyes felt. I felt like my skin was refreshed and my eyes were brighter. It honestly made me want to wear them every night just to achieve the refreshed- "I just left the spa" like feeling.

I have a special discount code if any of you are interested in giving them a try. Use code DCHRGDFH at checkout to receive $5 off your purchase. Offer ends 7/31/2017. Click here to purchase. 

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Tomato Pie Recipe

The best part about tomato season — tomato pies! They are one of my all time favorite things to make in the summertime. I've always had a love for those juicy, ripe, red vegetables (or fruits), however you see it. I think my love for them has a sentimental aspect. I vividly remember the earthy fresh smell coming out of my grandmother's hot and humid kitchen as she would stew pounds and pounds of tomatoes for canning. She would stay in the kitchen all day for days at a time, peeling, stewing, seasoning and canning these juicy tomatoes, that we would later incorporate into a meal.
Canning isn't a skill that I inherited, but then again I haven't really given it much of a chance. Maybe one day I will get into it, but in the meantime I'll stick to the pies. This recipe is a labor of love and worth every minute spent in the kitchen! I'll admit, this isn't the first time I've shared this recipe on the blog. It's just so good, I thought it needed to be brought back out of the archives. There may be one million and one recipes out there, but here's a look at my take on this classic southern pie!
Two things to note: I think a deep dish crust would work well with this recipe if you want to incorporate more tomatoes. I would also recommend doubling this recipe. One for you and one to share! 

Tomato Pie
 2 large tomatoes
1 large onion
3 green onions
 4 strips of bacon
 1 teaspoon garlic
 ½ cup of mayo
 ½ cup of ricotta
 ½ cup extra sharp cheddar cheese
 ½ cup of shredded mozzarella cheese
 1 handful of fresh chopped basil (the more, the better)
1 frozen pie shell (they come in pack of two)
1 packet of parma rosa dry sauce mix
 Sea Salt
1.      Preheat oven to 350°F and bake the pie shell according to package directions. (about 15 minutes)
2.      While the pie shell is cooking, slice the tomatoes 1/2 inch think and discard of seeds. Place the                 tomatoes on a paper towel, sprinkle with sea salt and let them dry for 15 to 20 minutes.
3.      Meanwhile, warm a large skillet and fry 4 slices of bacon until nice and crispy.
4.      Remove the bacon from the pan once cooked through and place on a paper towel to drain excess               grease.
5.      Dice an onion and sauté with minced garlic until translucent, cooking in the same pan the bacon               was fried in. I poured out most of the bacon drippings, leaving a little to sauté the onion in.
6.      Remove the garlic and onions from the pan and put to the side.
7.      Take the pie shell out of the oven when finished baking.
8.      Spread the garlic and onion mixture on the bottom of the pie shell.
9.      Pat the tomatoes dry once more with a paper towel and layer on top of the onions, covering the                 entire surface area.
10.  Top the tomatoes with chopped green onions, chopped basil, and sprinkle with pepper.
11.  In a medium size bowl, add the ricotta, mayo, grated cheddar cheese, bacon, half of the parma       rosa packet and mix well.
12.  Spread the mixture over the tomatoes, coating completely covering the top. Top with mozzarella.
13.  Bake the pie on 350°F for approximately 25 minutes or until golden around the edges.
14.  Remove from the oven and let sit for a few minutes before slicing.
15.  Top with fresh basil and/or bacon.

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Biscuit Making | Behind the Scenes at Callie's Charleston Biscuit House

Nothing says team building like making a batch of warm, fluffy biscuits! A few weeks ago, we took a field trip out of the office and headed over to Callie's Charleston Biscuit House to get our hands dirty in celebration of the launch of our new craft series spatula line. It was really intriguing to go behind the scenes of the making of Callie's Charleston biscuits
For those of you who aren't familiar, founder Carrie Morey keeps the lost art of biscuit making alive by hand making biscuits which are packaged and frozen, available for purchase in grocery stores across the U.S. Fortunately for us Charleston residents, we have the option to stop in Callie's Hot Little Biscuit, her retail shop on King Street serving a variety of piping hot award-wining biscuits.
On this particular day, we spent time in the Biscuit House, a historical and charming location that was previously a Navy medial building in North Charleston, SC. It's so impressive to think that this old house now serves as the bakery headquarters, responsible for shipping out biscuits all-day-long.
On display were a variety of packaged products, including pimento cheese, syrups and jams that she also sells.
We spent the morning in the kitchen with Carrie and her team, learning the proper techniques for preparing the perfect biscuit. I was so impressed that everything is done by hand. There was not a piece of machinery used once, other than the oven of course. Talk about an arm workout. Those ladies in kitchen mean business.

You might be wondering who Callie is and why it's not called Carrie's biscuits. The coveted recipe comes from Callie, Carrie's mother. We have Carrie and her team of bakers to thank for bringing the biscuits to life every day.
We divided up into groups and each prepared our own batch finishing them off with toppings of our choice. Think cinnamon sugar, pimento cheese, bacon, black pepper, chives and warm butter. The best part was trying everyone's creations at the end. 
It was such a pleasure to go behind the scenes of the biscuit house and see first-hand all of the hard work that goes into producing these warm little treats. Seeing the love that goes into the process, makes them taste even better. If you're ever visiting the Charleston area, I highly recommend stopping in the Hot Little Biscuit Shop. You won't regret it! But if you can't make it to the shop, pick up a frozen batch from your local grocery store to enjoy. They are a nice treat to keep on hand when you want a quick snack or have guests over. 
Now excuse me while I go pre-heat my oven!

Monday, June 26, 2017

Life Lately May | Food & Friends

May was a fun month! Here's a little glimpse of some of the things we got into.
When Cinco de Mayo falls on a Friday, there's a natural obligation to celebrate. We kept it simple and enjoyed all the chips, salsa, and cervezas with friends at Mex 1.
Eager to enjoy some time on the water, we had planned to spend a long day on the boat. We were prepped and ready, from the appetizers to the champagne, but the weather wasn't on our side. A cold front came through leaving us with wind and highs just reaching 70, which makes for a chiller day on the water. But that didn't stop us. It ended up being a beautiful afternoon!
You can't beat a Charleston sunset on the water.
One of my best friends came in town for the weekend to celebrate her 30th birthday.
There were cupcakes...
And champagne...
Followed by a relaxing afternoon spent by the pool.
And a delicious dinner at Le Farfalle
The octopus carpaccio is a must!
And the ricotta gnudi is insanely good!
I tried my hand at preparing grilled artichokes for the first time. You can find the full recipe here. They turned out rather nice, if I do say so myself!
My brother and I spend some quality time with my mom on her birthday, inclusive of an afternoon boat ride in the river. 
When your friend comes in town and wants to go on a boat ride but it's too late and it's dark out, you enjoy a glass of wine in the parked boat.
I was so excited I got to try La Morra Pizzeria before they hit the road to Brooklyn!
A group of us rented a house for the weekend at Fripp Island for the Beaufort Charities Golf Tournament. I've decided golf cart life is the way to go!
Fripp Island is such a beautiful area. It's peaceful and quite with water views and an easy way of life. And did I mention the friendly deer?

I finally found time to check out one of James Island's new lunch spots, the Hen and the Goat. Their caprese sandwich was delicious. 
We kicked off Memorial Day Weekend with dinner at one of our favorite restaurants, The Obstinate Daughter
The King's Honey is my absolute favorite cocktail from here...complete with bee pollen! As for the food, it deserves it's own dedicated post. :)
The rest of our weekend was spent with the wind blowing through our hair, salt on our skin and sand at our feet.
And another gorgeous sunset...

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