These Rosemary Apple Crêpes are light, delicious, and perfect for lunch. Simply stuff one French Crêpe with apple slices, cheddar cheese, and fresh rosemary, and then lightly grill.

Rosemary Apple Crêpes

These Rosemary Apple Crêpes are light, delicious, and perfect for lunch. Simply stuff one French Crêpe with apple slices, cheddar cheese, and fresh rosemary, and then lightly grill.

Rosemary Apple Crêpes

These Rosemary Apple Crêpes are light, delicious, and perfect for lunch.  Simply stuff one French Crêpe with apple slices, cheddar cheese, and fresh rosemary, and then lightly grill.

It’s no secret that I love crêpes– I crave them for breakfast, lunch, dinner, dessert, and even for snacks in between!  If you’ve kept up with Champagne Tastes over the last few months, you know that I’ve been on a crêpe-binge– a crêpe-stravaganza— and have filled your phone screens and work computers with all things crêpe.  You’re welcome.  Let’s do this again, shall we?  Today– Rosemary Apple Crêpes– another simple and delicious way to fill your French Crêpes.

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Blueberry Basil Julep - Muddle basil leaves with blueberry simple syrup, add crushed ice, add bourbon, and drink up!

Blueberry Basil Julep

Blueberry Basil Julep - Muddle basil leaves with blueberry simple syrup, add crushed ice, add bourbon, and drink up

Blueberry Basil Julep

This Blueberry Basil Julep is made with blueberry simple syrup, fresh basil leaves, and bourbon.  Enjoy it on Derby Day, at a cocktail party, or whenever your herb garden is overflowing.

A few weeks ago, the husband and I made another weekend road trip to the Kentucky Bourbon Trail.  While we wandered around distillery gift shops and waited for our tours, I had lots of time to read the cocktail recipes that were plastered all over the gift shops.  In particular, a recipe for a pineapple basil julep at Jim Beam caught my eye.  It was a little more complicated than I wanted my cocktail process to be, but I liked the idea of adding a fruity simple syrup to a julep.  When we got home, I started playing bartender.  (Except, I don’t know how to do any fancy bartender bottle-spinning moves, and I’m not very good at listening without interrupting, so maybe I’m NOT an awesome bartender.)  At any rate, I tried a few cocktail concoctions, and this one was the bomb dot com.

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These savory, vegetarian Tomato and Herbed Cheese Crepes are quick, delicious, and easy to prepare

Tomato and Herb Cheese Crêpes

These savory, vegetarian Tomato and Herbed Cheese Crepes are quick, delicious, and easy to prepare

Tomato and Herbed Cheese Crepes

These Tomato and Herb Cheese Crêpes use delicate French Crêpes filled with freshly sliced tomatoes, shredded cheese, and fresh garden herbs.

I’m not sure if you noticed, but here at Champagne Tastes, we’ve embarked on a Crêpe Journey.  The poor husband has been stuffed full of breakfast, lunch, dinner, and dessert crêpes, and has started to mumble in French while he sleeps.  If you too want to be crêpe-crazed, and join us on our expedition into all things crêpe, the easiest thing to do is start by learning how to make French Crêpes.  Practice your crêpe technique, and keep a stack of these über thin French pancakes on hand.  Once you’ve got crêpes in your fridge or freezer– everything else will be très simple.

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Vegetarian Applesauce & Blueberry Crepes - For a delicious, sweet yet healthy treat, or a decadent breakfast

Applesauce and Blueberry Crêpes

Vegetarian Applesauce & Blueberry Crêpes - For a delicious, sweet yet healthy treat, or a decadent breakfast

Applesauce Crepes with Blueberries

These Applesauce & Blueberry Crêpes are stuffed with homemade applesauce spiced with cardamom, and topped with warm, delicious blueberries that have been heated until they burst.

Can I tell you something shocking?  Here it is– Up until recently, I’d forgotten about crêpes.  I hadn’t forgotten they existed, of course, but it had been a couple years since I gleefully devoured a French crêpe.  And, let me just tell you, I love, love, love crêpes.  I love them so much, that I briefly considered making a mille-crêpe cake for my wedding.  Even so, I’d forgotten about my love for these über-thin French pancakes.  Recently, however, while on our epic, cross-country expedition, the husband and I stopped at Michael’s Corner, a French creperie in Durango, Colorado.  While I dug into the creperie’s ridiculously fabulous food, I cried, “We have to move here so I can eat these every day!”  Next, I decided that even if we did move to Durango for the crêpes, I probably couldn’t afford to eat out EVERY day.  When I got home, I dusted off my crêpe pan, and started cooking.
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Vegan Strawberry Lavender Lemonade- All you need is strawberries, lavender petals, sugar, and lemons. Add gin or vodka for a Hard Strawberry Lavender Lemonade!

Strawberry Lavender Lemonade

Vegan Strawberry Lavender Lemonade- All you need is strawberries, lavender petals, sugar, and lemons. Add gin or vodka for a Hard Strawberry Lavender Lemonade!

Strawberry Lavender Lemonade

This Strawberry Lavender Lemonade uses strawberries, lavender simple syrup, and lemons to make the perfect summer drink.  For a delicious summer cocktail, add gin or vodka.

It’s strawberry season!  The strawberries are juicy, flavorful, and incredibly inexpensive right now, so it’s time to eat them.  Normally, when I buy strawberries, I end up devouring them all long before I remember to put them in a pie, ice cream, smoothie, or lemonade.  A few weeks ago, however, I saw strawberries on sale for about $1 a quart, and I bought… well, I bought a LOT.  When I got them home, I started cleaning, hulling, and freezing those lovely little bright red berries.  After freezing batches and batches of strawberries, I noticed a few jugs of a pre-made strawberry lemonade in our pantry, and thought, “Game on! I make better lemonade than that!”  This Strawberry Lavender Lemonade is better than pre-made lemonade, is refreshing, delicious, and best of all– it’s easy!

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This Wild Berry Lavender Granita with Whipped Ricotta is a gourmet-level icy treat that can be made without any special ice cream equipment!

Wild Berry Lavender Granita with Whipped Ricotta

This Wild Berry Lavender Granita with Whipped Ricotta is a gourmet-level icy treat that can be made without any special ice cream equipment!

Wild Berry Lavender Granita with Whipped Ricotta

This Wild Berry Lavender Granita with Whipped Ricotta is a gourmet-level icy treat that can be made without any special ice cream equipment!

Last summer, I wandered aimlessly with the husband through the blistering heat of the Tuscan sun, eating as many cold things as possible.  I mostly ate gelato, because well, it’s gelato.  (I really don’t need to explain that one, right?)  Along the way, however, I also found myself devouring gelato-filled cannoli (what?! I didn’t even know that existed!), and of course, granita.  If you aren’t familiar with granita, it’s an icy frozen treat, traditionally made with water, sugar, and lemon juice.  It’s also used as a palate cleanser between meal courses. (File this factoid in your brain somewhere, just in case you someday have an especially fancy-schmancy dinner).  My favorite thing about granita is that it’s ridiculously easy to make at home– no ice cream maker required.  This Wild Berry Lavender Granita with Whipped Ricotta is the perfect way to cool down on a summer day.

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Lemon Pepper Octopus

Lemon Pepper Octopus

Lemon Pepper Octopus - Perfect for seafood lovers!

Do you need a fancy recipe for date night?  A romantic dinner for two?  Are your in-laws or boss coming over for dinner, and you need to impress?  Periodically, Champagne Tastes will be featuring ‘Gourmet’ recipes.  These will still be budget friendly and relatively simple, but will help you confidently serve a gourmet meal without hiring a chef.

Are you feeling adventurous?  Let’s talk octopus.  That’s right, those eight-legged sea monsters that spend their days looking like they’ve escaped from a Jules Verne novel.  The spineless, fascinating creatures that can fit through any space they can squeeze their jaw bones through.  Well, my friends, those leggy beasts are also completely and utterly delicious.  The husband talked me into buying one on a Jungle Jim’s trip, and that’s how our invertebrate obsession began.  This recipe for Lemon Pepper Octopus is easy, and sure to leave you with a tender and flavor-packed meal.

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Chili Butter Corn on the Cob

Chili Butter Corn on the Cob

Corn on the Cob with Chili Garlic Butter

Corn on the Cob with Chili Garlic Butter

If you live anywhere remotely close to the Midwestern United States, there’s a good chance that warm weather means fresh corn on the cob.  You can, most likely, buy corn on the cob all year long, but in the summer it’s fresher and tastier.  If you, like me, enjoy gobbling down these tasty morsels of summertime goodness, it’s possible that you, like me, will find yourself with more corn than you intended to buy.  The recipe for Chili Butter Corn on the Cob will help you shake up your corn routine.

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Lavender Lemonade- Quick, Easy, and Perfect for Parties. Only ingredients needed- lavender petals, sugar, + lemons. Optional: Add gin or vodka for Hard Lavender Lemonade!

Lavender Lemonade

Lavender Lemonade- Quick, Easy, and Perfect for Parties. Only ingredients needed- lavender petals, sugar, + lemons. Optional: Add gin or vodka for Hard Lavender Lemonade!

This spring, I went a little crazy with my herb garden.  What started out as 2 herbs, grew to four, and then I added a few more, and then a few more, and then before I knew it, there were 13 colorful little metal pots filled with perky green herbs.  Among the herbs were two lavender plants, happily growing and making everything on my tiny deck smell better.  Seeing those lavender plants reminded me that a little while back, a I’d been gifted a bag of dried culinary lavender petals.  (Thank you, lavender-gifting friend!)  I wanted to use the dried petals up before I (hopefully) had a plant full of new lavender flowers to dry out, and that is how my obsession with Lavender Lemonade began.  This lemonade is not only delicious, it’s incredibly easy.

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Braised White Asparagus

Braised White Asparagus

Easy, Vegan White Asparagus Braised in White Wine, Coconut Oil, and Herbs

I’ve been asparagus obsessed lately, guys.  Ever since I talked about purple and white asparagus (here), I’ve been on a mission to try them both.  So far I’ve only found white asparagus, but you can be sure that if (WHEN) I find purple, it will be amazing.  I’m sure of it.  I found white asparagus in the ‘Scratch n Dent’ food section at Jungle Jim’s  (Did you even know that was a thing???  I believe it’s similar to the “Manager Specials” marked-down food at Kroger, but it’s all gathered conveniently in one insanely awesome, if easy to completely miss, section.)  Yes, Jungle Jim’s, I will take your marked-down and perfect-looking produce and cook it right away!  This Braised White Asparagus is cooked with white wine and fresh herbs, and makes a deliciously fresh spring-time side dish.

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