Cookie Butter Milkshake

I was walking through Trader Joe’s, and given the curious consumer that I am, I always make a pit stop at the ‘tasting station’ to see what little tasties they are offering. I usually don’t ever buy whatever they are tasting, but this one fine day, the cookie butter milkshake grabbed ALL of my attention. I went back for a second one, and HAD to recreate it at home. Friends that I have served this to can stand by the fact that this may very well be THE best milkshake in the entire world. Just when you thought that peanut butter-chocolate or strawberry-banana combinations were your favorite, THINK AGAIN!!!!!!

Cookie butter (a.k.a. ‘speculoos‘) is not peanut butter, it’s not almond butter. If you’ve ever had biscoff cookies, this is a butter made out of those gorgeous little bites of heaven. It is made out of cinnamon-spiced cookies, blended into a smooth, creamy, and outright ADDICTIVE butter. This recipe is not easy on the waistline, but indulge a little and share this recipe with your loved ones on a hot day! Treat yourself and replace a meal with this milkshake. You won’t regret it and will become an addict (like me). πŸ˜‰ Enjoy!!


PS – so sorry, but I had to be cheeky with this post’s picture. This milkshake feels a little healthier when paired with an apple πŸ˜‰ Life is all about balance, right?

Cookie Butter Milkshake PK

Yield: 1 amazingly delightful and perfectly balanced milkshake (picture above shows the amount that is yielded by below ingredients)

1/3 cup milk
1 cup vanilla ice cream
1.5 tablespoons of speculoos cookie butter (available for purchase at Trader Joe’s)


Put all ingredients into a blender, and blend for approximately 15-25 seconds, until you reach the milkshake consistency you desire. Note: If the shake is too thick for your liking, just add a little more milk and re-blend. Serve in a glass and enjoy immediately (with or without a straw/spoon!) πŸ˜‰

Classic Mojito

Here is a simple, yet refreshing mojito recipe to warm up your new 2013! The key to this recipe is using simple syrup to sweeten this drink and to use fresh mint leaves! You can even get creative and make ‘flavored’ mojitos if you want – perfect party drink, perfect celebratory drink to pair with guacamole and chips. Regardless of the occassion, you must try this recipe out!

Happy New Year to you all!



Yields: 1 delicious mojito

10 fresh mint leaves
1/2 lime, cut into 4 wedges
2 tablespoons simple syrup
1/2 cup ice cubes
1 1/2 ounces white rum
1/2 cup club soda
Variations: Add pureed mango or strawberry for an exotic mojito! Or use coconut rum instead of white rum for a sweeter, more tropical mojito!


Put the mint leaves and one lime wedge into a sturdy glass. Using a muddler, crush the mint and lime (this process releases the oils in the mint and juices from the lime).

Fill the glass with ice and add the rum, club soda, and simple syrup. Stir and taste, adjusting sweetness to your taste.

Garnish with the remaining lime wedge and a mint sprig.

Gone Bananaz Tropical Cocktail

We recently traveled to the beautiful island of Nevis in the West Indies (my second time, but my husband’s first!) and had a wonderful trip. It was a long weekend full of white, sandy beaches, delicious seafood, ripe, tropical fruits, wonderful people, and last but not least, AMAZING COCKTAILS!!! πŸ™‚

I have to share this one cocktail that was taught to us by our bartender, Kaddy, who works at Montpelier Plantation Inn (the STUNNING hotel we stayed at). We did a fun mixology class with Kaddy, and this cocktail recipe was creamy, had the right amount of sweetness coming from the juice, and the PERFECT amount of alcohol (not too much, not too little) :).

Writing this post makes me nostalgic already, but having this drink transports me back to that wonderful, relaxing state of mind that Nevis offered us.

I hope that many of you try out this drink recipe over the weekend (HAPPY FRIDAY!) or at your next get together – it promises to be a crowd HIT! Also just a note that you can feel free to use any brand for the coconut cream, creme de banana, etc. I have just linked to examples to help you!

Yields: 1 heavenly cocktail

Note: 1 shot of alcohol equates to 1.5 ounces

2 ounces dark rum
1 banana, skin off
1 ounce creme de banana
2 ounce Bailey’s Irish Creme
1 ounce coconut cream
a splash of pineapple juice
two scoops ice
Garnish: fresh grated nutmeg


Combine all of the ingredients in a blender. Blend for 30 seconds-1 minute until ice and ingredients are well-incorporated. Pour into serving glass of your choice, garnish with fresh, grated nutmeg on top and enjoy! πŸ™‚

Mango Monsoon Cocktail

Hi Everyone! HAPPY FRIDAY! πŸ™‚ In honor of it being the end of the week and in the spirit of letting loose, I have come up with a MANGO juice concoction (thank you all for voting on my facebook page for what you preferred as the juice base of this cocktail recipe (the battle was between pomegranate juice and mango juice – and MANGO won!) Fret not, my lovely pomegranate fans, I promise you a pom recipe NEXT Friday πŸ™‚

If any of you are a little bit like me, sometimes I just want a light, refreshing cocktail that isn’t loaded with tons of alcohol that stings my throat. What a novel idea – a TASTY cocktail? πŸ™‚ Let it be known that I had an absolute BLAST testing this recipe out in my kitchen πŸ˜‰

I am sure those of you that try this will LOVE it – perfect to serve along spicy food (the sweetness of the mango and peach schnapps goes perfectly with something that has a kick!) or you can make a big jar of this and serve it at an outdoor party when it’s warm outside. I would describe this drink as crisp, light, refreshing, and DELISH!

The name, by the way, is a little ode to the beautiful, luscious mangoes that come out of lovely Bombay (that is known for its monsoon season, among other things ;-)). If you’ve ever had the real, Alphonso Mangoes (Aapus Aam) from Ratnagiri/Bombay area, you know what I am talking about πŸ˜‰

Enjoy πŸ™‚

Yield: 1 amazing cocktail


1 cup Mango juice, chilled (any Mango nectar/juice works!)
1/2 shot of Peach Scnhapps
1 shot of Coconut Rum (something like Malibu’s or Pirate’s would work just fine)
a splash of sparkling water, Champagne, or Prosecco, chilled


Mix mango juice, peach schnapps, and coconut rum in a shaker. Shake with ice. Serve in a champagne glass, top up with your choice of bubbly. If desired, garnish with lime wedge (optional).

‘Adult’ Hot Chocolate with Baileys, Kahlua & Amaretto

[Note: new picture above was taken by me from a moving vehicle as we were driving around Park City, Utah area – how COOL-looking is this restaurant?]

I have made this adult hot chocolate for many of you at my home, and those of you that have tried it, can attest to how incredibly addictive this drink is! Everyone that has tried it has always LOVED it – so here is the simple recipe so you can all make it at home!

It is an ‘adult’ because it has alcohol in it. I love my warm, chocolate drinks with a little ‘adult-ness’ to them, but anytime I drink one with whiskey in it, I really feel it in every sip. This drink, on the other hand, is so creamy and delicious, you will forget there is even any liqueur in it! This is lovely in the evening after a day skiing/boarding on the slopes, or even on a cold, rainy day to warm up your spirit πŸ˜‰

I love this drink super hot (temperature wise), but drink it at whatever temperature suits you!


Yield: 1 serving


1 cup milk
3 teaspoons of hot chocolate mix (or the equivalent of one serving of hot chocolate, depending on the brand/mix you use!)
1 oz Bailey’s Irish Cream
1 oz Kahlua (Coffee Liqueur)
1 oz Amaretto (Almond Liqueur)

Optional toppings:
whipped cream
1 tsp cinnamon OR 1 tsp. chili pepper (for a little kick!)
chocolate syrup (like Hershey’s), drizzled


Heat mug with milk in the microwave until heated to desired temperature (I like mine really hot and understand my microwave power well, so I heat mine for 2 minutes).

Stir in hot chocolate mix. (Take a sip to make sure the temperature is per your liking – now is the time to reheat if needed!)

Pour in Baileys, Kahlua, and Amaretto and stir to incorporate.

Serve with the choice of your toppings and drink hot!

Spring Sangria


Note: (I use the $2 bottle of Charles Shaw Cabernet Sauvignon, a.k.a. 2 Buck Chuck, from Trader Joes, and it’s PERFECT! No need to spend a lot of $$ – table wine is just fine!)

1 (750-ml) bottle red wine
1/2 cup brandy
1/4 cup triple sec
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
1/2 cup orange juice (fresh squeezed juice is even tastier!)
1/2 cup simple syrup, or more to taste (equal parts sugar and water, heated until sugar dissolves, cooled)
1/2 orange, cut into thin slices
1 apple, cut into thin slices
Optional: 1/2 mango, cut into small cubes
(I think this is a fun variation, but you will get a fabulous end result with or without the mango!)
Optional: 1 (750-ml) bottle sparkling water, chilled, to be used only at time of serving


Mix all ingredients together and let stand in a tightly sealed container or pitcher (plastic or glass, doesn’t matter) for at least 24 hours (but no more than 48 hours) in the refrigerator before serving.

Before you serve, taste the sangria and adjust sweetness to your desired taste (feel free to add more simple syrup at this point!). I usually like my sangria on the sweeter side, so I always do this step!

When ready to serve, fill glass with ice and pour! Feel free to add some chilled sparkling water to your glass if you desire to make it a bubbly sangria!

FOOD PAIRING: Pairs beautifully with good company πŸ˜‰ This drink is also fabulous with something salty – I recommend the traditional tortilla chips and guacamole to round out the experience! πŸ™‚