Crudite and Dip

  • 1 bag of miniature baby carrots 
  • 1/2 lb of sugar snap peas
Rinse the carrots in cold water (even though the bag says they are already clean).  Drain the water from the carrots using a collander.​  Dump them out in one layer on a paper towel and pat them dry.  Boil 4 cups of water with a little salt.  When the water reaches a rolling boil carefully drop your sugar snap peas in and count to 30.  Dump the sugar snap peas in the collander and run under ice cold water.  The point of doing this is to blanch the peas in hot water to bring out their color and then immediately cool them so they don't continue to cook.  Dump them on a paper towel in a single layer and pat them dry.  Put the carrots in one plastic bag with a piece of paper towel and the peas in another with a piece of paper towel and refrigerate.
The Afternoon of your Celebration
The Morning of your Celebration

 The dip and its "bowl"
  • 8 oz sour cream
  • 1 envelope of salad dressing mix 
Combine in a bowl.  Put 1/2 of the envelope in and taste the mix.  Add a little bit more at a time until you reach the taste you like.  You don't want to overpower the sour cream flavor.  
  • 1 red or yellow bell pepper
​You are using the pepper as your "bowl".  Cut the top of the pepper off (about 1/4 of an inch down) and discard.  Reach in and pull out all the seeds, the core and the membranes and run under cold water.  Voila! You have a pretty colorful bowl.  Wrap it in aluminum foil and refrigerate.

Mimi, for goodness sake ... "white balsamic raspberry blush vinegar" -- are you serious?  Do we really need to be that precise?  Any raspberry flavored vinegar will do the trick for this salad.  Don't be intimidated if you can't find this exact type.
One Hour Before the Celebration

Spoon the dip into the hollowed out pepper. Put the pepper in the middle of a white plate. arrange the carrots on one side, the sugar snap peas on the other.  Put the whole thing in the refrigerator.

Baby Spinach Salad with
Raspberry Vinaigrette
  • 5 oz baby spinach 
Rinse and thoroughly spin dry the baby spinach leaves (even if the box says they are ready to eat).  Place them in a bowl large enough for tossing the greens with dressing. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate.
  • 2 tbsp white balsamic raspberry blush vinegar
  • 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 tbsp of honey
In a small bowl, whisk ingredients together.  Taste to make sure you are satisfied with the salt and sugar levels.  Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate. ​

HA!!  Yes, Sue's on it.  I was getting
 a little too carried away there with my direction.  Just find a raspberry flavored vinegar but if you can find the one I specified it's really good!

Later on you are going to garnish this salad with berries.  A classic combination is strawberries with balsamic vinegar but, my husband doesn't love strawberries.  So, I buy the berries that are on sale.  The last time I made this blackberries were on sale and they were absolutely delicious.  Assuming you use blackberries, run them under cold water.  Place them on a paper towel in one layer and pat them dry gently and refrigerate.
Cut Here


Everyday Divas Celebrations
with Mimi and Sue
Do Valentine's Day

I am going to give you a ridiculously easy but impressive suggestion for your crudite.  Remember, it's not about delivering a "Food Network-worthy" experience, its' about "the love".  First up, the vegetables.