Seasonal Snapshots // Summer 2014

Summer 2014 in PIctures // www.dulanotes.com @nicoledula

Summer is hard to say goodbye to. I’ll miss the slower pace and no-cook dinners. It’s not all sadness, though, because fall is a mighty fine season, too. I’m already thinking about a trip to the cider mill for donuts and cider. Before I move on, though, I’m going to give summer one last high five with a post of my phone photos from summer 2014. Remember this Coconut Tres Leches Cake? THE BEST. Anniversary flowers I bought myself because I had to have them immediately. This Coconut Milk Grilled Pineapple was a summer favorite. Amy invited me to her… Continue reading

CSA 2014: Week 14 + Asian Cabbage and Beef with Soba Noodles

CSA 2014: Week 14 // Dula Notes

Saturday’s trip to the market was a chilly one and I couldn’t help but fill up on late summer produce. I stocked up on watermelon, corn and ripe little plums. I also had to get some honey crisp apples because they’re so good. I’ll be in full fall mode soon, but I’m savoring the last bit of summer while I can. I used the beets to make a smoothie recipe that I’ll share soon and I made an asian-style noodle dish with the cabbage that turned out so well I’m sharing it with you. Marc loved it. It comes together quickly… Continue reading

Watermelon + Heirloom Tomato + Burrata

Watermelon + Heirloom Tomatoes + Burrata Recipe // www.dulanotes.com @nicoledula

My favorite dinner in the summer is the unfussy, but completely delicious combination of burrata and heirloom tomatoes. I start having it for dinner the minute I get fresh summer tomatoes in my CSA. One afternoon, I had burrata left over and no tomatoes, but some cubes of watermelon and I figured why not? I now like it better than with tomatoes alone, which I can’t even believe I’m even saying. The sweet watermelon, savory cheese, rich olive oil and a sprinkle of salt and pepper together is a food symphony. Give it a try! And if you’re thinking, hey… Continue reading

Travel // Traverse City, Michigan 2014

Traverse City, Michigan Travel Guide // www.dulanotes.com @nicoledula

Traverse City has my heart and I think you’ll love it, too. It’s beautiful, friendly and good food is everywhere. The restaurants, wineries and breweries proudly share their cooperations with local farms, bakeries and cheese producers. It’s my kind of place. Scroll to the bottom of the post for links to everywhere we went. Lots of photos ahead! We stayed in a condo at The Village at Grand Traverse Commons, a thriving community that is a repurposed state mental hospital. It sounds pretty creepy, but the hospital treated their residents with respect and kindness. The hospital closed after the advancement of… Continue reading

CSA 2014: Week 13

CSA 2014: Week 13 // www.dulanotes.com @nicoledula

I’m back from Traverse City! Maybe you didn’t know I had gone, but I Instagrammed many of my adventures. I’m putting the finishing touches on my vacation post because phew, it’s a long one with lots of photos, but I think you’re going to like it. While we were away I missed my colorful CSA! We did have some delicious, local produce at almost every restaurant we visited, though, which was lovely. Many of those restaurants pushed their heirloom tomato dishes because their time is almost up. I hoped we still had some tomatoes coming in our CSA and we did!… Continue reading

My Favorite Chocolate Chip Cookies

Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookies Recipe // www.dulanotes.com @nicoledula

A friend of mine recently asked if I had a classic chocolate chip cookie recipe on my blog and it suddenly struck me that I didn’t. What the? Obviously I had to right this wrong immediately. I’m glad this recipe only makes 12 cookies, because I made a lot of batches to get this right. In the end I didn’t stray too far from the original America’s Test Kitchen recipe, but I went through a few recipes to make sure these were my favorite. They’re crispy on the edges, soft in the middle and they don’t skimp on the chocolate. A… Continue reading

Raspberry Basil Vinaigrette

Raspberry Basil Vinaigrette Recipe // www.dulanotes.com @nicoledula

Raspberry vinaigrette makes me think of my first job. I filed documents and was the back-up receptionist in a corporate office. The company wasn’t huge when I started there. Later I found out that I was hired at the end of a merger with only a few key positions moving to Chicago, while the rest of the employees would lose their jobs. This explained the stressed out people and empty cubicles. I met all types of people while I was there, like the petite blonde that was obsessed with the McRib sandwich and the overworked payroll manager that buzzed around… Continue reading

CSA 2014: Week 11

CSA 2014: Week 11 // Dula Notes

Here are my plans for this week’s share: Red cabbage – cole slaw or shredded on fish tacos New Potatoes - oven fries Summer squash, tomato, basil - summer squash with baked eggs Tomato and green beans – BLT’s with a side of steamed green beans Greens, cucumber and basil – salad with raspberry vinaigrette (recipe soon!) Rainbow chard – greens for smoothies Happy weekend! This week we received lettuce, green beans, rainbow chard, new potatoes, heirloom tomatoes, red cabbage, cilantro and basil.

Blueberry Nectarine Galette

Blueberry Nectarine Galette Recipe // www.dulanotes.com @nicoledula

I’ve decided that galettes are my favorite food. They’re pretty no-fuss to make, adaptable to the seasons and always the most beautiful things to ever come out of my oven. How could they not be? The fruit bubbles up and glistens as it cools. The free-form crust of the galette ensures there’s no two alike, but each one is rustic and charming. I love that. They don’t last long in our home and they are the sole reason I keep a spare pie crust in my freezer. You know, for galette emergencies. I found some beautiful nectarines at the farmers… Continue reading

CSA 2014: Week 10 + Herb Polenta with Summer Squash and Corn Succotash

CSA 2014: Week 10 // Dula Notes

This week I made fattoush, again, because it uses a variety of produce from my CSA. Tomatoes, parsley and lettuce all came from my share and then I grabbed a fragrant bunch of mint from our planter outside. I like to grow mint in the summer for cocktails and smoothies. Just make sure to plant mint by itself because it grows like crazy. My stash of summer squash is growing, so I made my favorite  Summer Squash Olive Oil Bread with Lemon Crunch Glaze and sent one loaf to work with Marc that was gobbled up quickly, even though it had some stiff… Continue reading