Valentine Cocktail Party + 3 simple appetizer recipes
Hedin Simple Valentine Cocktail Party

There are so many options for how to spend Valentine’s Day, but a fun way to celebrate with all of your friends is with a simple cocktail party - after all, Valentine’s Day is on a Thursday this year! Instead of celebrating just as couples, invite everyone over for drinks and small bites and celebrate together. This is especially great if some of your group is ‘coupled up’ and some of your group isn’t. And the planner-ahead-ers can pop over before their dinner reservation!

Hedin Simple Valentine Cocktail Party

I have found when you’re hosting a party that the best thing you can do for appetizers is pick three good ones and go ALL IN! So be prepared to make tons of them because no one will dig into a partially empty buffet. I usually make one batch of each of these per every 10 people. But if you are cheese lovers, then maybe add a little more.

Hedin Simple Valentine Cocktail Party | Baked Camembert
Hedin Simple Valentine Cocktail Party | Baked Camembert
Hedin Simple Valentine Cocktail Party | Baked Camembert
Hedin Simple Valentine Cocktail Party | Baked Camembert

BAKED CAMEMBERT

1 wheel of camembert cheese

10 sprigs rosemary

1/2 cup chopped walnuts

2 tablespoons honey

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Place a bed of rosemary sprigs on a baking sheet and place the unwrapped wheel of cheese on top.

Bake 30-35 minutes until the cheese browns on top. Remove from the oven and let cool 5 minutes.

Move the cheese to a serving dish and discard the cooked rosemary branches. Drizzle the top with honey and sprinkle with walnuts.

Serve with slices of bread or crackers.

Hedin Simple Valentine Cocktail Party

I found all of these serving platters at Anko - my new favorite obsession because everything is darling and really well priced. I picked up these pink platters because they’re pink but not PINK. I was friends with a guy who used to call PINK menopause pink because when he was growing up in the south, every woman around 50 years old remodeled her kitchen and added those pink appliances that were so hot for a while. It was the ‘60’s after all. Ever since then I have been super picky about my color pink. I DO NOT WANT menopause pink in my life.

These are not. These are awesome. There are dinner plates and bowls too.

Hedin Simple Valentine Cocktail Party | Pesto Gorgonzola
Hedin Simple Valentine Cocktail Party | Pesto Gorgonzola
Hedin Simple Valentine Cocktail Party | Pesto Gorgonzola

PESTO GORGONZOLA

Undoubtably the simplest appetizer you will ever make. Two ingredients; ten minutes; served hot or cold!

1/2 cup pesto

1/2 cup gorgonzola cheese

1 baguette, sliced

In bowl, mix together the pesto and gorgonzola until evenly mixed. Spread on the top of toasted bread. Toast again for 2-3 minutes in a broiler - or serve cold. Delicious either way.

Hedin Simple Valentine Cocktail Party | Candy Cocktail

CANDY COCKTAIL

1 packet grape poprocks

slice of lemon

1 tablespoon chambord

champagne

Rub the edge of a champagne coupe with the slice of lemon and rim with poprocks. Pour in chambord and top with champagne. Serve quickly!

Hedin Simple Valentine Cocktail Party | Candy Cocktail

I love combining new things with my collection of vintage barware. These champagne coupes are from the 1950’s and I adore them. I use them all the time because there is literally never a time when gold rimmed champagne coupes aren’t appropriate. If you can find some yourself, I highly encourage you to grab them! I set them on top of a marble board from Anko. I like to have everything grouped together - the marble is a great landing place for glassware ESPECIALLY if you have marble countertops. The slab creates a spot that’s unique but won’t damage your real marble counters in the event anyone spills.


Pin these for later!

Hedin Simple Valentine Cocktail Party
Hedin Simple Valentine Cocktail Party
Hedin Simple Valentine Cocktail Party

Valentine Round Up
Alexandra Hedin
Family Valentine Game Night + Heartthrob Pasta Recipe
Ali Hedin | Family Valentine's Game Night Dinner

There is not only one good way to spend Valentine’s Day but I think this is the best way - with your family at home. This is the best way for loads of reasons: 1. Going out for Valentine’s Day is expensive. 2. Most restaurants have a prix fix menu, servers that are grumpy, and are overly busy. 3. Your kids will feel super special if you spend this day with them instead of out on a date. 4. You can go out on a date tomorrow night when everything is back to normal and you can get a seat at a restaurant.

For our family game night I made a fun dinner everyone will eat - but also made it a little bit cheeky and really leaned into the ‘valentine’ theme. Kids love it. And, let’s be honest, I love it too.

HeartthrobPastaRecipeDetailPage.jpg
Ali Hedin | Family Valentine's Game Night Dinner

Our family’s new favorite game is this hilarious combination of pictionary and being blindfolded - it’s called Googly Eyes. It is hilarious! You roll to land on what color glasses you’ll wear while you attempt to draw something as simple as popcorn. The glasses make it surprisingly challenging. Unless you are Pearl and I - we are a dream team.

Ali Hedin | Family Valentine's Game Night Dinner
Ali Hedin | Family Valentine's Game Night Dinner

HEARTTHROB PASTA

serves 4

STEP 1

Bring a large pot of water to a boil.  Slice the beets in half and add them to the water as it begins to boil.  When the water has come to a boil, add the pasta.

 

STEP 2

When the pasta is nearly cooked, turn the heat off and let rest for 30 minutes.  

 

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

 

STEP 3

Unroll the package of crescent dough and press together all of the seams.  Slice the dough into strips.  Twist the dough and form it into a heart.  

 

Bake 10-12 minutes until golden brown.

 

STEP 4

Heat a skillet with the olive oil.  Cook the peppers, onion, and garlic over medium heat until softened. Remove the beets from the pasta, remove the skin with a paper towel (by rubbing it off), chop them and add them to the skillet.

 

STEP 5

Drain the pasta – reserving at least one cup of pasta water – and toss the pasta with the peppers.  Add the pasta water and toss until a sauce has formed.  Remove from heat and sprinkle parmesan on top.  

          

1 red bell pepper, sliced

1 sweet onion, sliced

2 cloves garlic, chopped

2 tbs olive oil

2 beets

½ lb pasta

½ cup parmesan cheese

1 package crescent dough

Ali Hedin | Family Valentine's Game Night Dinner
HeartthrobPastaMainMenu2.jpg
Ali Hedin | Family Valentine's Game Night Dinner

CUPID SPRITZ

1 ounce pomegranate juice

1 ounce vodka

DRY Sparkling Lavender

In a glass filled with ice, layer vodka and pomegranate juice. Top with DRY Sparkling and serve! For those without booze, just skip the vodka and don’t forget to garnish with a cherry.


THIS IS A SPONSORED POST. ALEXANDRA HEDIN HAS RECEIVED PAYMENT OR PRODUCTS IN EXCHANGE FOR PROMOTING. ALL OPINIONS STATED ARE MY OWN AND I ONLY PROMOTE PRODUCTS AND COMPANIES I LOVE.

weeknight party | super bowl
Ali Hedin Super Bowl Party

Are you hosting a Super Bowl party this year?  It's such a fun excuse to have a party.  The struggle of course, is that it's an all day type thing.  You start at kick off, claim your spot on the couch, and it lasts until well after the awards ceremony.  

Ali Hedin Super Bowl Party

Here's how I'm making Super Bowl super this year.

Ali Hedin Super Bowl Party
Ali Hedin Super Bowl Party
Ali Hedin Super Bowl Party
Ali Hedin Super Bowl Party
 

Shop the party

 

Behind the Scenes | January Cooking Class
Ali Hedin  |  Cooking Class

I was encouraged to teach cooking classes last spring by a friend who has been in the food business for about 100 years. She knows her stuff and so I took her advice. Here I am, seven classes later and I LOVE IT! I’ve taught classes to kids and adults, friends and strangers who have become friends.

Ali Hedin  |  Cooking Class

The January class was supplied dinnerware by Anko - and each vase got to take home a vase at the end of the night! If you don’t know Anko, I’m mildly obsessed. It’s a company out of Australia who’s moving in to the US right now! They have pop up shops in Bellevue Square and Mill Creek Town Center and they’re getting their US flagship store ready to open this spring at Alderwood.

Ali Hedin  |  Cooking Class
Ali Hedin  |  Cooking Class

I picked out these pink plates because they are perfect for February dinners - but they are also SO ON TREND with dusty pink being the color of everything right now. Because the Anko products are really inexpensive (dinner plates are $2.50!) you can not feel guilty about buying something that is SO ON TREND. Usually I don’t go for trendy but are you kidding me with these plates? They’re so cute! And, let’s make a note, not every shade of pink looks good with red. I love my red. These dusky pink plates are the perfect compliment to red!

Ali Hedin  |  Cooking Class
Ali Hedin  |  Cooking Class

I am having so much fun with these classes and I hope you’ll join me for the next one.

 
Click here to register!

Click here to register!

 

THIS IS A SPONSORED POST. ALEXANDRA HEDIN HAS RECEIVED PAYMENT OR PRODUCTS IN EXCHANGE FOR PROMOTING. ALL OPINIONS STATED ARE MY OWN AND I ONLY PROMOTE PRODUCTS AND COMPANIES I LOVE.

Alexandra Hedin
2 Perfect Champagne Cocktails for New Year's Eve
Ali Hedin | Champagne Cocktails
Ali Hedin | Champagne Cocktails
Ali Hedin | Champagne Cocktails

Ali Hedin | Champagne Cocktails
Ali Hedin | Champagne Cocktails
Ali Hedin | Champagne Cocktails
Cocktails, PartiesAlexandra Hedin
Champagne Toast to the New Year + Champagne Risotto
Ali Hedin | Champagne New Year

Is champagne ubiquitous for New Year’s just because it’s bubbly and festive? I hadn’t really thought of it before, but it must be, right? I love a good glass of champagne but I didn't know that until I actually ever had a glass of Dom Perignon. I was 22 so it’s not like I had to wait forever to get a decent glass of bubbles. Before that I’d had a glass of Cooks. Ok, possibly a bottle. But even typing that right now gave me a headache. Good champagne makes the world of difference.

Good champagne is really remarkable. Like life changing. Good champagne is so worth the money. Just don’t waste it on people who don’t like it. And don’t mix the good stuff. If you’re going to make it into a cocktail, then buy prosecco - same flavor profile, similar taste, not all of the sugar of cheap champagne, and WAY cheaper.

Ali Hedin | Champagne New Year
Ali Hedin | Champagne New Year
Ali Hedin | Champagne New Year
Ali Hedin Champagne Risotto

CHAMPAGNE RISOTTO

serves 4

1 shallot, chopped

1 clove garlic, chopped

½ cup butter, divided

¼ lb chanterelle mushrooms

2 tbs olive oil

2 cup Arborio rice

2 cup champagne

4 cups room temperature seafood stock

½ cup parmesan cheese

salt and pepper

8 large sea scallops

 

STEP 1

In a medium saucepan, heat 2 tbs butter & 2 tbs olive oil. Cook mushrooms over medium heat until tender.  Remove from the pan and set aside. (5 mins)

 

STEP 2

In the same pan, melt another 2 tbs olive oil with 2 tbs butter.  Cook shallot and garlic until softened (4 mins)

 

STEP 3

Stir Arborio rice into the pan and stir until all of the kernels are coated in oil.

 

STEP 4

Pour in one cup of champagne and stir constantly to deglaze the bottom of the pan.  When most of the champagne has evaporated, add the second cup and stir until that liquid has evaporated.

 

STEP 5

Pour in one cup of stock and stir until completely incorporated. When most of the stock has dissolved, add another cup of stock.  Continue until all of the stock has been added.  Season to taste with salt and pepper.

 

STEP 6

Remove from heat and stir in mushrooms, remaining butter and parmesan cheese.  

 

STEP 7

Bring a dry skillet to high heat.  Pat the scallops dry and season with salt and pepper.  Melt 2 tbs butter in the pan and place the scallops into the melted butter.  

 

Cook 1-2 minutes until browned.  Flip and cook 2 minutes on the other side.  Scallops are properly cooked when slightly firm to the touch.  

     

 

Ali Hedin | Champagne New Year
Ali Hedin | Champagne New Year
Ali Hedin | Champagne New Year
Alexandra Hedin
Vintage Christmas + the best fondue recipe
Ali Hedin | Vintage Christmas

Can you tell I’m feeling nostalgic for our own house? Soon we’ll have a great new house that will be amazing - especially at Christmas - but until then, I’m posting these darling photos from our old house and how cute we were.

Our original house was a 1940’s with a few “mid century” architectural details. I leaned into the vibe and hosted a little family cocktail party with champagne cocktails and a really delicious fondue. Even without a mid century home, you can still host a fun little cocktail party with mid century vibes.

Ali Hedin | Vintage Christmas
Ali Hedin | Vintage Christmas

RASPBERRY CHAMPAGNE

1 scoop raspberry sorbet (about one ounce)

1 tablespoon chambord

champagne

raspberries

In each glass, pop a scoop of sorbet and a tablespoon of chambord. Top with champagne until full. Drop a raspberry in each glass.

Ali Hedin | Vintage Christmas
Ali Hedin | Vintage Christmas
Ali Hedin | Vintage Christmas

THE BEST FONDUE

The trick with this fondue is that you need to keep it warm. It will set up if you let it get cold as we’re basically just dealing with warmed cheese.

8 ounces shredded gruyere cheese

8 ounces shredded swiss cheese

2 tablespoons flour

1 cup white wine

1 teaspoon brandy

1 teaspoon lemon juice

2 cloves garlic

Toss shredded cheeses with flour until totally combined.

In a large pot, bring wine, lemon juice, and whole garlic cloves to a low boil. Slowly add the cheese, whisking the entire time. Continue whisking until smooth. Stir in brandy and transfer to a fondue pot. Serve with sliced bread, cooked red potatoes, and honey crisp apple slices.

Ali Hedin | Vintage Christmas
Ali Hedin | Vintage Christmas
Ali Hedin | Vintage Christmas
Ali Hedin | Vintage Christmas

Charm Hour :: Ginger Christmas Punch
Ali Hedin | Booze Free Christmas Punch

Usually I would post a boozy punch, but there have been loads of reasons why we need a punch with no booze recently. Mostly because I have children who feel the need to participate in every party. It would be so much easier if they didn’t think I was cool. We’ll get there soon - my 10 year old is already starting to be embarrassed by me.

If you aren’t looking for a booze free situation, then add 1 cup of whiskey and 1 teaspoon of bitters. Cheers!

Ali Hedin | Booze Free Christmas Punch

GINGER CHRISTMAS PUNCH

4 cups orange juice

1 cup pomegranate juice

1 bottle DRY Sparkling Ginger

Mix everything together in a punch bowl or a pitcher and serve iced.

Ali Hedin | Booze Free Christmas Punch
Three New Cooking Classes {+ a gift certificate}
Ali Hedin | January Cooking Class

I kept wanting to host a cooking class this December, but it was just not going to happen. Personally I was super busy and had almost zero time to plan a class. For you, I assumed you were also busy with winter concerts and family parties and also would have struggled to come to the class.

So here we are - in the middle of December and scrambling for holiday gifts which is perfect timing for classes in the new year! I’ve uploaded three new classes - one in each month - and you will LOVE these classes. I’ve also included a printable gift certificate so you can fill it in and gift it! It’s the perfect gift for the ‘hard to shop for’ person on your list - and you could buy two tickets and make it a ‘date!’

Ali Hedin | Cooking Class

January 24th is the first class. Once you’re back from the holidays and you’ve finally put away your decorations, come cook an amazing winter menu that you can make for a dinner party or just a dinner!

Ali Hedin | Cooking Class
Ali Hedin | Cooking Class

Menu

Winter Minestrone Soup

Roasted Black Cod with Panzanella Salad

Winter Greens Salad

Persimmon Cake


Ali Hedin | Cooking Class

In February we’re cooking on the 28th - it’s the last day of February but I figured how would we ever get together for a class before then? With Valentine’s Day and mid-winter break (which I recently learned is called “Ski Week” in California??) there is almost no time. So here we are - ready for spring to pop up so I thought we’d cook a menu filled with spring vegetables and herbs to get us in the mood for warmer days, fresh vegetables, and a little less rain.

Menu

Spring Gnocchi

Herb Rubbed Pork with fennel

Spring Green Salad

Berry Cake

Ali Hedin | Cooking Class
Ali Hedin | Cooking Class
Ali Hedin | Cooking Class

March might be the best class ever. I am so excited for this class - I love St. Patrick’s Day! I created a menu that’s perfect for showing you how to create a simple St. Patrick’s Day celebration just in time for your own party. We’ll meet on March 14th and cook together. Can’t wait to cook with you - and maybe do shots of Jameson??

Menu

Potato Cheddar Soup

Braised Corned Beef

Irish Soda Bread

Pot ‘o’ Gold Dessert

Ali Hedin | Cooking Class
Right click the gift certificate to download and fill in the blanks!

Right click the gift certificate to download and fill in the blanks!

Alexandra Hedin