Holiday Dinner Thyme Part III of III: Dessert and Menu Design

Following Part I’s Pre-Appetizers and Part II’s Appetizer & Main Course recipes, I would like to share with you one of my favorite Ice Cream recipes as well as the “how-to” instructions on creating this super-festive Owliday dinner menu!

Owliday Dinner menu & tablescape

There’s definitely an art to Ice-cream making, but it sounds more intimidating than it may seem – more on technique later.   That said, experienced or not, this David Lebovitz Pumpkin Pie ice cream recipe sure isn’t one of those quick & easy treats, but I think the results are well worth the process. I followed the recipe without adding any “optional ingredients” and  topped off the ice cream with some crumbled Ginger Snaps prior to serving.  Remember, don’t skimp on the double “straining”, that key step makes the ice cream custard nice and smooth!

Pumpkin Pie Ice Cream with Ginger Snap Cookie Crumble

Pumpkin Pie Ice Cream with Ginger Snap Cookie Crumble

Reading Buzzfeed is one of my favorite past times, not only do they have hilarious animal posts (such as this one), I love getting tips and inspiration from them!  This post on DIY Holiday Card and a trip to Paper Source was all I needed to get excited!

Tools Needed (for Menu and 3D Trees):

– 1″ Paper Punch“Leaf” Edge Punch

– 3-D Foam Squares; Elmers Glue

– Color Markers; Silver / Gold Gel Pens

– White / Green Card Stock

– Paper Printables for Little 3-D Xmas Trees and Ornaments

– Awesome Owl Stamp & Stamp Ink Pad

– Small Red and White Felt Balls


Menu Instructions (oh so festive!):

  1. With Silver / Gold gel pens, draw from top of menu “ornament  strings” of various lengths.
  2. Using Edge Paper Punch on green card stock, punch an edge long enough to cover the width of the menu. Glue on “Menu” card, covering part of the ornament strings.
  3. Print out  Modern Ornament free printable on white card stock, then use the 1″ Round Paper Punch and punch out the ornaments.
  4. Attach 1 small 3-D foam square on back of each of the paper ornament and press firmly onto the menu card at the end of each “ornament string”
  5. Glue on the red / white felt balls on top of the Green leafy edge.
  6. Stamp the Owl on the bottom right corner.
  7. Using a black marker, write out the menu items and draw out the “String Lights”
Owliday Menu!

Owliday Menu!

3-D Tree Instructions:

  1. Using white card stock, print out this free Xmas Tree printable.
  2. Cut out the triangles and fold each triangle in half.
  3. With Elmers glue, glue sides to each other – TADA!

Floral Arrangement:

To top off the tablescape, I assembled a very simple and fragrant bouquet of White Chrysanthemums, Parrot Tulips, and Hypercium Berries.

Until our next dinner party – season’s tweetings to you and yours!

Thanksgiving Dinner for Two – Yes We Can!

The silver lining for us unfortunate New York City transplants with no family nearby, I suppose, is that we get to create our own quiet traditions!  With some modifications and a twist to the traditional meal, I hoped to recreate the warmth and festive feeling of this holiday.


– Butternut Squash & White Bean Puree with Bacon Sage Croutons

– String Beans “a la Marc”

– Lemon Garlic Roasted Chicken Breasts

– Roasted Figs with Home Made Honey Ice Cream

It’s hard to imagine that the star of a meal would be a side. But try out Big Girl Small Kitchen’s Butternut Squash & White Bean Puree with Bacon Sage Croutons and I think you’ll agree with me. A dish with such a nice sweet / savory combination and great crispiness to break up the puree, what’s not to like!

Butternut Squash White Bean Puree with Bacon Sage Crouton


As another side, I wanted to make a lighter version of another Thanksgiving favorite, the String Bean Casserole.  I loved this String Beans a la Marc recipe from BGSK – the nice garlicy notes went very well with the bird of the evening.

And now, the Thanksgiving bird! I decided to pardon a turkey and make a zesty & refreshing Lemon-Garlic Roasted Chicken Breasts (at this point, I might as well rename my post, a Very BGSK Thanksgiving…!). 

String Bean A La Marc

To end the evening just right, we gave thanks to the wonderful fig & honey. I made some beautiful roasted figs which accompanied the nice vanilla bean in Maison du Miel’s Honey Ice Cream so well (especially with a hint of richness added by butter used for roasting the figs).

Roasted Figs with Honey Ice Cream

Menu / Floral Design:

Using rich burnt orange palette, I created a menu with paper punched fall leaves & a petite fall arrangement with Mini Calla Lillies, Roses, Waxberries (too cute, like mini lychees!).

Rose Calla Lily Floral Arrangement