Hot chocolate always has to come with warm fuzzy memories, doesn’t it? I vividly remember being about 9 – otherwise known as the age when snow was fun. My sister and I would spend hours and hours building forts and making snow angels. We’d come in the house with red noses and leave our snowpants in a puddle at the door (you know, for mom to clean up). We’d sit down to mugs of swiss miss hot chocolate, no marshmallows for me.
I might not have wintery white Christmases anymore but here’s my fancy adult white hot chocolate that’s made oh so much more delicious by adding one of my favorite ingredients – matcha.
If you’re new to matcha, check out this matcha coconut latte post where I describe it a little more… or view all of our matcha recipes in our (now working again, sorry for yesterday’s glitch) recipe index.
I get a lot of questions about my background – mostly about how I got started blogging and if I have tips or suggestions for someone just starting out. I’ve always had a hard time coming up with “the answers” because I truly feel like everyone’s path is different. What I can tell you is that one key to my creative little journey has been surrounding myself with insanely talented people to be inspired by. So when La Crema Wines asked me to be a part of their Interview Magazine Statement Makers campaign, I immediately knew I wanted to interview one of the most inspiring and creative people I know – Trina Bentley of Make & Matter.
Everything I know about design, developing an aesthetic, and having a nose-to-the-grindstone work ethic, I learned from her. While Jack is the person that finishes my sandwiches, Trina is (creatively speaking) the person who finishes my sentences. She’s been my go-to person for everything from logo brainstorms to my wedding dress choice. She’s the person who I trust to tell me that the sky is blue and that Pantone 485 is, in fact, the best red.
A bit about our background: Trina and I first met while working at a local graphic design firm. Eventually, we took a leap and started our own studio where we learned the ropes of creative entrepreneurship. Fast forward a bunch of years and our paths have diverged a bit – I started this here blog, and Trina went on to make a statement by starting Make & Matter, an award winning design studio where she creates gorgeous branding and packaging for natural food brands (like those beautiful Epic bars).
Last weekend, we got together for a glass of wine and a little brainstorm for an upcoming collaboration (more on that soon!). Jack put together a couple of cheese plates (and also snapped these photos)… Trina enjoyed La Crema’s Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir while I popped open the Chardonnay (which is in fact one of my favorite whites because it’s light, buttery, and also pairs well with most foods).
I realize this isn’t a dinner recipe, or a how-to-blog post, but I’m hoping this little Q & A will at least inspire all of you creative-types out there with some tips to make a statement in your own career. (Keep reading for the interview after the jump).
During the holidays, Jack has a thing for peppermint bark. I have a thing for not picking sticky candy pieces out of my teeth, so we compromised and used festive ingredients that we both love – pistachios, dried cranberries, coconut flakes and (most importantly!) a sprinkle of coarse sea salt.
This is my kind of holiday dessert because it’s (naturally) red and green, and also easy to through together. You might even already have these ingredients (or similar ones) on hand in your pantry. If you don’t – feel free to customize with whatever toppings you like – nuts, dried fruit, or even crushed candy cane pieces if that’s your thing.
Pop it in the freezer to set – then break and eat!
So many of you have written me asking about the kitchen equipment I use and recommend. I figured now was the perfect time to put together a list of some of my favorite things. Many of the items shown here are things that I own and use all the time – and a few of them are totally on my wishlist. (hint hint, Jack).
Whether it’s time to ask your relatives for that Vitamix or give your newlywed daughter a really amazing (matching!) set of pots and pans, hopefully I’ve offered a few ideas. To make it easy, everything here is from Macy’s.
You can click directly on the images in this post to view each product. And if you’re looking for a few more options, check out their cookware buying guide.
(Keep reading for more gifts after the jump…)