Last weekend, some lovely lady friends of mine honored me and Baby Ava (the 37-weeker I’m lugging around in my belly and who’s currently wreaking havoc on my right groin muscle) with a baby shower! And to say I loved it would be the understatement of the year. It was such a delightful morning in every way. For one thing, Arkansas finally gave us a little glimpse of Fall… I think it was actually sub-70 degrees that morning. And for another, there was delicious brunch food aplenty and I was surrounded by sweet women and adorable tiny baby paraphernalia. Perfection.
And seriously… the food?!? Well, let’s just say the way to this mama’s heart is definitely through her stomach. We had quiche with spinach, quiche with goat cheese, marinated tomatoes with basil, smoky cheese grits, strawberry cake, cinnamon rolls, cinnamon raisin muffins, fresh fruit, tea punch, coffee… the works. (Better than the works, in fact!)
I felt so very honored and loved by the friends who attended that event, the friends who put forth so much effort organizing it and making everything so special, and of course the sweet gifts that people gave for Baby Ava. Wow. It is humbling to be the recipient of such a blessing.
I thought it would be fun to share about my hostess gifts with you, just in case you should ever find yourself in need of a creative idea for one! Of course, you can never go wrong with a nice bottle of wine, a scented candle, or some gourmet chocolate! But here’s another fun gift that would be especially nice if the friend you are giving it to enjoys good food…
Fresh mozzarella, packed in a jar with herbs and spices, and high-quality olive oil… it’s special, it’s different, and it’s pretty darn versatile! Around my house, fresh mozzarella is a special treat. I don’t always have the grocery budget to work it into my regular weekly meals, so sometimes I make it myself, and other times I just buy the Americanized shredded version. But when I do have the fresh stuff on hand, my favorite ways to use it are in Peach Balsamic Pizza, Antipasto Skewers, Chicken Pesto Pizzetas, “Romesco” Pasta Bake, and Homemade Calzones. Oh, and I’m dying to try this recipe from Ciao Veggie for Blueberry Mozzarella Panini. Looks pretty dynamite if you ask me.
So log this idea away for the next time you need to give a hostess gift. I think it’s a pretty good one. (Plus, it’s so pretty!) And if you have the extra time to make a decorative label and attach a recipe card for a delicious dish that uses mozzarella cheese, even better! I can’t speak for everyone, but I know I would personally love to receive this. Also note that this gift is most definitely perishable, so be sure to check the label on the mozzarella you buy and let the recipient of your gift know how long it will last in their refrigerator.
P.S. ONE MORE DAY to enter this week’s awesome giveaway! I’ll be selecting the lucky winner of “A Mommy’s Guide to Taking Better Pictures” by Taylor Jackson, tomorrow at midnight. You can enter here… good luck!
Here’s the printable recipe:
Mozzarella Hostess Gifts
This easy recipe makes enough for 7 (8 oz.) jars of herb marinated mozzarella.
Author: Carissa Casey | prettyhungryblog.com
- 7 sterile glass jars (8 oz. size) with lids
- 30+ oz. good quality olive oil
- 24 oz. fresh mozzarella (pearls, bocconcini, or ciliegine)
- 14 sprigs fresh rosemary
- 7-14 cloves fresh garlic
- 7 leaves fresh basil
- Fill each jar ¾ full with balls of fresh mozzarella, dispersing cloves of garlic, sprigs of rosemary, and leaves of basil within. Pour good quality olive oil over the contents of each jar until covered.
- Screw on lids and store in refrigerator. Use within 2-4 weeks (depending on the expiration date of the cheese you buy.)
- Attach a special recipe card or label and give away as hostess gifts!
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