Apr 252017

The Kentucky Derby is an exciting time for people around the world.  Even growing up in Maine people would gather on race day to watch the horses run and possibly even throw a themed Kentucky Derby party.

Tips for Hosting a Winner's Circle-Worthy Kentucky Derby PartyTop image courtesy of kentuckytourism.com

When I moved to Kentucky the excitement surrounding the Derby only grew, with lots of events leading up to race day and Kentucky Derby parties to attend.  If you’re planning your own Kentucky Derby party I have some great tips for you on how to make it winner circle-worthy. Thank you to Thorntons for partnering with me so I can share these party tips with you. Continue reading »

Apr 212015

I am a member of the Everywhere Society and Everywhere has provided me with compensation for this post. However, all thoughts and opinions expressed are my own.

Last year I had the pleasure of attending the Macy’s Culinary Council Cooking Demo here in Louisville.  While there I interviewed Johnny Iuzzini and was able to watch as he whipped up some dessert magic.  I’m really excited to share that he’s returning to the Macy’s at Oxmoor Center again this year, and will be accompanied by Stephanie Izard (season 4 winner of Top Chef) and Louisville’s own Edward Lee.

Johnny Iuzzini, Stephanie Izard, and Louisville's Chef Edward Lee

Whether you’re a Louisville native or if you’re just in town for the Kentucky Derby, I’d love to have you join me at this year’s cooking demo!  In addition to seeing Johnny Iuzzini again, I’m kind of stoked that Stephanie Izard is going to be there.  Top Chef has been one of my favorite shows over the years, and she’ll be the third Top Chef contestant I’ll have the chance to meet. Continue reading »

Dec 062013

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of PAM Cooking Spray.

I’ve always found it interesting that depending on where you are in the country, you’ll find different favorite foods.  Especially around the holidays, traditional dishes and desserts begin being baked and served

Growing up in Maine, Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners both came with a crazy amount of desserts, especially considering the number of people that were there to consume them.  We had cheesecake, fudge, brownies, and more pies than we knew what to do with: pumpkin, chocolate, butterscotch, apple, pecan, even mince meat.  There was no shortage of tasty treats.

Kentucky Derby Pie Recipe (without Bourbon) #PAMSmartTips

When I moved to Kentucky I found that some of those favorites were favorites here, as well.  But I also found a new addition to the pie line up that I had never even heard of: a pie to celebrate the Kentucky Derby race (a.k.a. The Pie Which Must Not Be Named, as I received a request to remove the “official” name of this pie from my post).  It’s kind of like a pecan pie with chocolate chips, with a bit of a gooey filling. Continue reading »

May 052012

138th Kentucky Derbt

138th Kentucky Derby

Today is the 138th Run For The Roses, also known as the Kentucky Derby, and the excitement in town is palpable.  We’ve actually been celebrating the Kentucky Derby Festival for two weeks now.  The Festival kicks off with one of it’s most well-known events, Thunder Over Louisville, an airshow that culminates with the largest fireworks display in North America.  It’s quite a sight to see.  There are also hot air balloon races (and the “glow”, when they light them all up at night); the Pegasus Parade, which is one of the largest parades in the United States; and a number of parties, balls, tastings, etc.

The Festival ends today, with the running of the Derby.  The race, which is for three-year old thoroughbred horses, is also known as “The Most Exciting Two Minutes In Sports.”  It’s the first “point”, if you will, in the Triple Crown.  And while the Oaks and Derby – and all the other less “famous” races run this weekend – are quite exciting, many people will say that people-watching is the real draw.

Hundreds of celebrities drop in on our lovely little town this week so there is a lot of star-gazing, especially in “Millionaire’s Row” at Churchill Downs where the races take place.  Every drinks Mint Juleps (or in most cases, orders one for the collectible cup and tosses the drink, because And famous or not, it’s a tradition for all the women attending the races (or parties around town) to don a “Derby Hat” and fancy dresses.  Derby hats are generally large and elaborate, with plumes and bows and ribbons and other bits and baubles.  They can be fairly expensive (Zoe Saldana wore one that came with an $1800 price tag).

Most people who live here don’t actually attend the Derby; instead, they attend Derby parties thrown by friends and family, while the tourists hit up the Downs.  We generally follow suit with that, attending the party thrown by my in-laws.  Everyone is encouraged to follow the traditions: dress up, wear the hats, etc.  They even hold a hat parade and then provide prizes.  So of course, Bubbles has to wear one!

Spending big bucks on a hat she’ll wear once really isn’t my idea of financial smarts, so we make ours each year.   This year, I found a floppy Derby-style hat in the Dollar Spot at Target just before Easter; then I used some floral clips to finish it off.

DIY Derby Hat

DIY Derby Hat

I’ll share some more photos and more about the party later (and maybe even the recipe for the cheesecake-stuffed strawberries I made for it).  I hope you enjoy the race!

Do you watch the Kentucky Derby?