Cream Cheese Two Ways: Mixed Veggie and Smoked Salmon

IMG_1954

Yesterday, my brother and I surprised my mom with tickets to the Radio 104.5 Birthday Show. We all have very similar taste in music, so it was the perfect opportunity for us to take our momma out for Mother’s Day. With artists like Vance Joy, Hozier, AWOLNATION, Death Cab for Cutie, and Of Monsters and Men playing, we knew we were in for a day full of awesome music. However, having been to many full-day music events before, I knew that with days full of awesome music comes booze and subsequent hunger pangs. As such, I decided to prepare us a delicious, filling brunch to enjoy prior to taking the ferry over to Camden.

I’ve always wanted to make homemade cream cheese, and I saw this as the perfect opportunity. I’m all about options, so I was determined to make two varieties. I ultimately decided on mixed veggie and smoked salmon. Mixed veggie seemed like a great option because it’s almost always a crowd favorite. Smoked salmon, on the other hand, seemed like a great option because while I’m obsessed with lox bagels, they can sometimes be challenging to eat due to all of their components. By adding smoked salmon, capers, and dill to the cream cheese, we were able to chow down on lox bagels much more gracefully than usual. To ensure a balanced and bubbly meal, I added some fresh fruit and grapefruit mimosas into the mix. I think it’s safe to say that, afterwards, our bellies were happy and our bodies were fueled for hours to come.

It ended up being an incredible day! The weather couldn’t have been more perfect, and it was lovely to relax on some blankets in the lawn area while listening to amazing music. Even better, it was wonderful to spend some quality time together on a very special Mother’s Day. I’m so grateful to have such a strong female role model in my life, and I’m thankful to have her each and every day. Shout out to all the fabulous mommas out there! I hope your kiddies showered you with all the love you deserve. :)

IMG_1953

Mixed Veggie Cream Cheese

What you’ll need:

  • 2 carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 2 celery stalks, chopped
  • 2 large radishes, chopped
  • 1 red pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 3 green onions, chopped
  • 2 8 oz. packages cream cheese
  • Cracked black pepper to taste

What you’ll do:

  • Place cream cheese in a large mixing bowl; soften in the microwave for approximately 1 minute
  • Add all remaining ingredients, and stir until just combined

IMG_1952

Smoked Salmon Cream Cheese

What you’ll need:

  • 4 oz. smoked salmon slices, chopped
  • 1/4 cup capers
  • 1/4 cup fresh dill, chopped
  • 2 8 oz. packages cream cheese

What you’ll do:

  • Place cream cheese in a large mixing bowl; soften in the microwave for approximately 1 minute
  • Add all remaining ingredients, and stir until just combined

IMG_1961

IMG_1958

IMG_1957

Trop Pops

IMG_1872

Confession: I’m a Marshalls/Homegoods junkie. I often force myself to pass up non-necessities and later regret it, which was the case with a set of popsicle molds that I saw last summer. Well, when I was moseying around Marshalls the other day and saw the same exact set, I considered it fate and purchased them this time around.

I’m looking forward to making homemade popsicles all summer long; the options are endless, they’re super refreshing, and you know exactly what’s going into them. My first batch of homemade popsicles have a tropical theme going on, hence the title “Trop Pops.” Mango, kiwi, and coconut water make for a refreshing treat minus the junk and calories. I must say, I ate one prior to writing this post and it’s made me even more excited to head to the beach this summer!

What other flavor combos should I turn into a delicious, yet healthy frozen treat?

Note: This recipe yields six popsicles.

What you’ll need:

  • 2 ripe mangoes, peeled, cored, and cubed
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 2 kiwis, peeled and sliced into circles
  • Coconut water

What you’ll do:

  • Place the mangoes and water into a blender; blend until puréed; pour the mango purée to the popsicle molds, adding the same amount to each mold
  • Freeze for approximately 1 hour, being sure to not freeze completely; instead, the purée should be hard enough that the next layer will not blend with the purée, yet soft enough that the popsicle sticks will be able to be inserted through
  • Once frozen for about an hour, place two kiwi slices on top of each mango layer; cover the kiwi slices with coconut water so that the liquid fills the molds to their tops; insert the popsicle sticks so that there is a kiwi slice on each side of every stick; freeze overnight
  • When ready to enjoy, run the popsicle molds under warm water and remove the molds

IMG_1875