There’s no better excuse for a decadent menu than Sunday evening and no time more relaxing to cook than the weekend’s tail end. Tonight I opted to put some fresh scallops to good use atop pasta in a creamy white wine sauce alongside a simple salad and wildly rich cheesecake.
Meet my favorite hors d’oeuvre of all time, the cheese ball. An elegant take on the traditional sphere of fromage, plucked from the pages of a 1970s cookbook (perhaps Junior League or maybe a Southern Living volume) of my mother’s. She has been making this to mark holidays and any celebratory event since before I was born and when I reminisce on a soirée, I can almost taste the Roquefort. The best part is that it is such a simple recipe and a certified crowd pleaser.
I’m a self-professed less is more kind of gal when it comes to consumerism. My closet isn’t overflowing and the stream of Amazon packages are kept to a fair minimum. What does give me a swipe-of-the-plastic thrill is splurging on delicious foods and beautiful tabletop. I never feel guilty about collecting more cocktail napkins or glassware because they always fit (much more forgiving than, say, bikinis) and I’ll use them year after year.
What a treat I have for you today, dear readers. We are joined by Charleston-based food stylist, recipe developer, and author of The Duke’s Mayonnaise Cookbook, Ashley Strickland Freeman. You’ve likely seen her work in Southern Living, Garden & Gun, and on the Food Network. Her simple, flavorful dishes ranging from properly Southern to internationally touted provide kitchen inspiration in spades. I was first introduced to Ashley’s culinary talents six years ago at my sister-in-law’s baby shower (they are lifelong friends) where a chance encounter with a tray of fruit tarts left me weak in the knees.