Archive for the category “holidays”

Lemon Almond Poppy seed muffins

I had a craving…

First, I wanted a lemon poppy seed muffin…

Then, I wanted an almond poppy seed muffin…

So, what’s a pregnant girl to do… eat a batch of¬†each?

No, because that would be silly. However, not the first time ūüôā ¬†Instead I made a combination of the two! And yes, it satisfied all my cravings and more!
IMG_7695Hello delicious muffin!

But, before I go any further I need to give a quick shout out to the amazing local strawberries at the market! Spooner Farms grows hands down the best strawberries in the world and for a very short window of time they are available and sooooooooo worth the price and the short season!

IMG_7688This half flat costs $13.99 but the joy you will get from devouring it will far out way the price tag!

IMG_7689It’s all about shopping local right? Well, here is your chance!

IMG_7690Make jam, eat them plain, strawberry shortcake perhaps or freeze them for smoothies later!

OK, back to the main event…


IMG_7674A few of the key ingredients for these lovely little muffins. Lemons, almond extract and poppy seeds all allowed me to create my perfect muffin in one!

IMG_7676Beat eggs and sugar until fluffy and slightly thick

IMG_7678The lemon zest along with the juice add a slightly sweet and refreshing kick while the olive oil (in place of butter) add a rich depth of flavor.

IMG_7680Can’t forget those cute little poppy seeds that speckle each muffin

IMG_7682The batter really is beautiful

IMG_7684Fill cups about 2/3 of way full and bake at 325 degrees for about 15 minutes

IMG_7686I love the crackly top

IMG_7691I tried them first plain and then with a glaze and let’s be honest, everything is better with a glaze!

IMG_7692Just a simple powdered sugar and lemon juice glaze added the perfect sweetness to these muffins

IMG_7696Great for a party, breakfast, brunch, or no reason at all. ¬†Also, these would freeze and defrost very well. Just don’t add the glaze until ready to serve.

Lemon Almond Poppy Seed Muffins



2/3 cup sugar

3 eggs

3 tbsp plain Greek yogurt

¬ľ cup olive oil

1/3 cup lemon juice

2 tbsp lemon zest

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 tsp almond extract

2 2/3 cups flour

pinch salt

1 ¬Ĺ tsp baking soda

2 tbsp poppy seeds


2 tbsp powdered sugar

squeeze of lemon juice for desired consistency


Preheat oven to 325 degrees.  Line 12 muffins tins with paper liners. In a stand mixer (or hand mixer) beat eggs and sugar for 2 minutes until slightly thick and pale in color. Add eggs, yogurt, olive oil, lemon juice, lemon zest, vanilla and almond extract and mix.  Remove paddle attachment and sift in flour, salt and baking soda.  Reattach paddle mixer and mix until just combined.  Scrap down sides of bowl, add poppy seeds and mix until just barely incorporated.  Do not over mix.  Fill muffins tins 2/3 full and bake for about 15 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean. Allow to cool completely before adding glaze.  Mix powdered sugar and lemon juice to create thick glaze and top muffins.





Cheese tray (with dried fruit crackers!)

What’s not to love about a cheese tray?! There’s cheese, crackers, other yummy bits of snacks and it’s so easy to serve.¬† Plus, it has a wow factor for those you are serving it to! Make any dinner party more elegant.¬† It’s an easy appetizer you don’t have to tend to.¬† People have the ability to create their own bite and the options are endless! I couldn’t resist these cute and delicious dried fruit crackers by Simple and Crisp.¬† Not only are they are great statement piece they taste good too!

IMG_7671A cheese tray is easy to arrange right on a cutting board.  It keeps it casual and allows people to cut pieces for themselves.


These dried fruit crackers were perfect with this hard goat’s milk cheese from Spain!¬† Be sure to pick a strong (not stinky) enough cheese to stand up to the crackers.

I recommend this Campobello Spanish cheese, a sharp cheddar or even a goat cheese.


IMG_7656Simple and Crisp crackers are so unique and perfect for any cheese or appetizer tray.  Try all 4: apple, pear, orange and blood orange. You get the real fruit flavor with the crunch of a cracker!

IMG_7658Here’s how I chose to serve my cheese and crackers.¬† 3 types of crackers: orange and pear Simple and Crisp, Raincoast Crisp cranberry hazelnut and apple slices!

IMG_7669I then realized I needed some color so I added some fresh olives from the self-serve olive bar! Any variety will do!

IMG_7659How cute are those crackers!

IMG_7661I love the fruit flavor plus the crispness of the cracker!

IMG_7662Cracker, cheese and apple: the perfect combination.  Crunchy, tangy, creamy, crisp and sweet.

IMG_7663The orange slice is so pretty!

IMG_7665A true classic!

IMG_7666Ok, then I got a little crazy but the pesto was such an awesome addition.  Grab a pre-made pesto in the deli section or make your own! This is a pea, kale and hazelnut pesto.


Habarnero Salmon Spread

Need a quick, delicious and memorable appetizer? I think we all need something like that in our back pocket. Luckily I’ve got the perfect item for any occasion! Harbanero Salmon Spread is a crowd pleaser. ¬†With a title containing habanero you may be thinking it is super spicy but the creaminess of the spread is the perfect combination with a nice smooth salmon spread. ¬†There is no fish taste so don’t let the idea of salmon scare you off. ¬†This spread has the perfect balance that all will enjoy!

IMG_7579Serve with your favorite cracker or even veggies but I especially like these mini croccantini.  They are usually served along side the spread when sampled at the market!

IMG_7580You can actually see the pieces of pepper and the color is beautiful and would make any dish better!

IMG_7581Delicious… trust me! ūüôā

Easy Appetizer {Yarra Valley Marinated Feta}

With all the holiday parties this time of year nothing is better than having an easy appetizer on hand to bring with you! This delicious marinated feta cheese is the perfect way to dress up any appetizer!

IMG_7288Serve with apples and Raincoast Crisps for a simple yet delicious cheese plate


IMG_7291The thyme and whole peppercorns give it so much favor!


IMG_7293It tastes as delicious as it looks!


IMG_7295The feta is so smooth and spreads onto a cracker perfectly!

Feel free to serve this yummy cheese with your favorites and wow any crowd!

The Holidays are Here!

Harbor Greens is your headquarters for all things Thanksgiving and Christmas! ¬†Thanksgiving is a little late this year so people are getting a bit of a late start on their decorating but don’t forget to stop by either the Tacoma or Gig Harbor location for your decorations, food for your meals , gifts for the holidays, delicious treats and the perfect Christmas tree!!

IMG_0659Check out these beautiful wreaths!

IMG_0660Trees, wreaths and everything green and smelling like pine!

IMG_0661Both stores have a huge variety of trees such as noble firs, alpine firs and others!

IMG_0662Look at all those trees!

IMG_0665You can even grab some cute holiday decor!

IMG_0666Grab your tree and some ornaments!

IMG_0667Cute holiday decorations!

IMG_0668Stocking stuffers, toss in your purse or treat a friend!

IMG_0669Beautiful dish towels for a hostess gift or to decorate your home this holiday season!

IMG_0670Beautiful gifts that you don’t even have to wrap!

IMG_0671Delicious holiday treats! Chocolate, peppermint bark, caramels and so much more!

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