Lifestyle Archives - Pamela Says
Print Saturday

Creating the Perfect Appetizer

It’s that time of year when the world falls in love… and our very special recipes come out to play.

My special recipe is called “Maroon Bells”, named after the beautiful mountain peak in Aspen.

The recipe comes from The Junior League of Denver’s cookbook called, Creme de Colorado.

The base is just grated white cheddar cheese, grated onion and mayonnaise.

Spread Raspberry Preserves and garnish with fresh raspberries and mint!

Here are the preserves and crackers I like, but you can serve it with sliced baguette. The recipe calls for Triscuits, but I like thin wafer crackers best!


Looking through old photographs, I seem to bring it to parties quite a bit! It’s so good and so easy!!!

A perfect appetizer for Christmas or Valentine’s Day!

Maroon Bells

2 1/2 cups Shredded New York White Cheddar Cheese (10-12 ounces)
1/3 cup Grated Onion (white)
2 T. Mayonnaise (Best Foods)
1/3 Raspberry Preserves (Bonne Maman)
Wafer Thin Crackers (Water Wheel)
Fresh Mint and Raspberries for Garnish

In mixing b0wl, combine cheese and onion, add mayonnaise. Mix well. Form into flat mound on serving dish and top with preserves. Garnish with mint and fresh raspberries.



Print Wednesday

Luxe-urious!!! Greystone Showhouse-WOW!

Maison de Luxe, the 2015 Designer Show House being held at the Doheney Greystone Estate in Beverly Hills this year is a must see, you only have one more week to go, so if you can’t make it, here is a little taste! Twenty-three renowned designers showcased the forty-six thousand square foot stone mansion to perfection!!  Here is a bit of what I saw, technically you were not supposed to take photos, but every time I asked I was told, “Sure!!!” Some of you that know me will assume I didn’t ask, but I promise, I did!


You enter the mansion through the courtyard and being that we were in southern California, of course it was a beautiful day! But all that bright sun through the windows made it a challenge to get good pictures.


So pretty, but truly it’s sooo much more beautiful in person…


Mark D. Sikes did the first floor halls that he transformed into a garden conservatory using gorgeous blues and greens that were both whimsical and elegant.


One of the best rooms was the library by Timothy Corrigan. It’s a juxtaposition of serious and playful. I loved how comfortable it felt… like you could really live there, not so “decorator showcase house” like you see at some of the shows.


He also did this upper landing, these antique french chairs were sooo special!


I loved Patrick Dragonette’s “Room Without A View”, he had a room with relatively no views but he created a fabulous space with a bar, a lounging area and a custom Caesarstone ping-pong table that he let us play on!


Andrew Brown from Birminham, Alabama was such a pleasure to meet and hear about his masculine “moody” space, there were so many renowned designers on hand that talked about their accomplishments.




This room!!!!


What a lovely day to enjoy the mansion!

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Seeing a room designed and executed by Nina Campbell was truly a pleasure, seeing her vision while using her own wall coverings and fabrics in an installation was inspiring!




Wallpaper, wallpaper, wallpaper… I’ve never seen so much beautiful paper…

de Gournay, Gracie and Montgomery!!!! Just to name a few!


So pretty, this designer decided to keep the original wallpaper in this dressing room!


The gardens around the mansion are spectacular and are open year round to the public, if you can’t make it to the showhouse, plan a hike to and around this beautiful estate! And.. there is a fascinating history of the mansion that you must read… Murder, Mystery and Mansion!!!


Maison de Luxe is so special because you are taken back to that gilded age of architecture with stately rooms and beautiful halls all transformed by amazing designers. Such a treasure, be sure to see it!!!!

Maison de Luxe continues to run November 18th-22nd, buy your tickets online.






Print Wednesday

Scarlett loves Carmel!

There is nothing that Scarlett loves more than a weekend in charming and dog friendly Carmel!


She insists we stay at the Cypress Inn where she enjoys all the “creature comforts” the hotel has to offer…


she gets to dine with us at the hotel…


and sleep with us…


go for fun walks…


and shop at fabulous boutiques…


go to the fancy pet store, Diggedy Dog, to get lots of treats (she wanted this bed but I assured her that it didn’t go with our decor)…


hang out with cool friends…


and sit outside at her favorite restaurant for lunch, The Bench, at the Pebble Beach Hotel…


have a drink before dinner at the hotel…


go to her new favorite restaurant in Carmel, La Balena, on Junipero, a cute little rustic Italian that is getting rave reviews…


Everything was delicious, but you have to try the fried chicken!!!


Her favorite thing to do is play on the beach! Our new spot is Ribera Beach. From Carmel, take 1 south and turn right on Ribera Road, right onto Cll la Cruz and park the car. Follow the walking trail down to the beach.


It’s stunning!!! It’s just 5 minutes by car or you can walk from town south for about 25 minutes.


And after a long day of shopping and playing on the beach…


she loves to go wine tasting at the Wrath Tasting Room in the Carmel Plaza and The Cheese Shop next door to get a little something to go with her tastings…


and then go back to the hotel for a nap!


So when do we get to go back?!?




Print Monday

Roses and Restaurants are not my style on Valentine’s Day!


Here’s a romantic way to spend Valentine’s Day right in your own home!


Throw some newspaper on your table, buy lots of fresh crab, make a salad, arrange some pretty tulips, melt some butter and pop a bottle of champagne!!!


Happy Valentine’s Day!!!

Coming up… Photos from Antarctica!!!

Print Monday

Soooo good!!!!


A new summer drink.. Kathy’s Pomegranate Margarita!!!  It’s such a  refreshing tart cocktail and not too sweet!!!  We made them again over the weekend and really perfected the recipe, a labor of love!!!!

Kathy’s Pomegranate Margarita

6 shots tequila (9 oz.)
1 cup  fresh squeezed lime juice
1/2 cup fresh squeezed meyer lemon juice
1/2 cup agave syrup (add more if you want it sweeter)
kosher salt
Turbinato sugar
Pomegranate juice ice cubes (use 100% juice, like POM)-2 cubes per drink
Ice cubes
Lime slices

Mix tequila, juices and agave syrup, make ahead and keep refrigerated.  Mix salt and sugar and place on a small plate, rim glass with lime juice and roll into mixture.  Pour tequila and juice mixture over ice with 2 pomegranate cubes and garnish with lime slices.  Makes 6 cocktails.




Print Thursday

The SF Ferry Building… what are you doing this Saturday???


You have to go to The Farmer’s Market at the San Francisco Ferry Building! (8am-2pm every Saturday, Tuesdays and Thursdays also, but there aren’t as many vendors) This is the perfect time of year to go!!!  Beautiful flowers, beautiful weather, beautiful produce and not too crowded. Late spring leading into summer is my favorite time. I love to taste my way from the front to the back and then go inside for more epicurean delights!  The whole market is wonderful, but here are a few of my favorites.

I start from the front and never miss a taste from this gentleman doling out his Dark Chocolate Almond Brittle



Don’t miss all the flowers!!  Bring a big bag to collect all your lovely treasures!




I love to buy fresh eggs, jams, yogurts, cheeses, breads and vegetables, you can even find heirloom plants to put in your own garden!





I love the Salmon Candy from Cap’n Mikes Holy Smoke, the yogurt from Saint Benoit, the conserves from June Taylor, and the preserves from Glashoff Farms.  Once inside the Ferry Building, pick up some olive oil from Stonehouse, cheeses from Cowgirl Creamery, salted caramels from the Village Market and macarons from Miette!!!


Try the Salmon Candy from Cap’n Mike!




After all of your hunting and gathering, be sure to stop for some sustenance!  The Slanted Door is the perfect place for a mojito and a delicious lunch!


There is not a time when I am in San Francisco that I don’t find my way to this wonderful market, I can never get enough of all the fabulous flavors, sights and experiences that this amazing place has to offer.  You need to go and let me know your favorite discoveries!!!





Ferry Plaza Farmers Market
1 Ferry Bldg Marketplace, San Francisco, CA 94111
Phone:(415) 291-3276
Tuesday: 10am–2pm
Thursday: 10 am – 2pm
Saturday: 8am-2pm

Print Saturday

Tuesday’s with Laurie-The Perfect Valentine’s Day Menu


Look who came into my kitchen to teach me how to make her amazing Salad Lyonnaise with a Crispy Poached Egg… Laurie!!! It’s a bit more complicated than the classic Frisee aux Lardons because she adds fried shiitakes and potatoes then breads her poached egg and deep fries it… the result… AMAZING!!!  For those that want to have a wonderful, intimate dinner at home for Valentine’s Day, this is the perfect menu!


1 Tablespoon Dijon mustard
3 Tablespoons Sherry Wine Vinegar
1/3 Cup Olive Oil

1-2 heads Frisee lettuce, rinsed and separated
2 slices thick cut bacon per person, diced
1/4 cup sliced Shiitake mushrooms (per person)
1/8 cup large diced skin on yellow potato (Yukon or Fingerling, per person)
1 Egg per person
1 Beaten egg (place in small bowl)
Flour for dredging (place in small bowl)
Panko Bread Crumbs for coating (place in small bowl)

– Rinse Frisee and slice off end, separate leaves and place in large salad bowl, set aside.
– Mix mustard and vinegar, whisk in olive oil to emulsify, set aside.
– Cook diced bacon over medium/high heat until crispy, remove bacon with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towel lined plate.
– Add sliced Shiitakes to the same pan with bacon drippings and cook until crispy, remove with slotted spoon and drain on paper towel lined plate.
– Drain off most of bacon grease from the same fry pan and sautée diced potatoes until slightly browned, cover pan to steam potatoes once they are browned to finish cooking.


To Poach Eggs:
Fill a 3 quart pot 3/4 full with water with 1 Tablespoon of white wine vinegar and bring to a slight boil.  Crack 1 egg per person into a small ramekin, pour egg from ramekin into boiling water and poach for 3 minutes.  Remove with slotted spoon and drain on paper towel lined plate.


In a small sauce pan, fill half way with vegetable oil and cook over medium high heat.  After eggs are poached, dredge in flour first, then the beaten egg and finally, the panko bread crumbs.



Place coated poached egg into oil and fry for 15 seconds until light golden brown.


Toss dressing with Frisee lettuce then add cooked bacon, mushrooms and potatoes and toss again to coat.  Scoop servings of tossed salad into a bowl or shallow plate and top with crispy poached egg. (Printable Recipe for the salad in the Recipe Section of my blog, along with the recipe for the French Onion Soup, Laurie’s Filet and Bearnaise and the Lemon Tart)


Serve with a yummy bottle of Chardonnay for the salad and a special Pinot Noir for the Filet and Bearnaise.


This dinner is fantastic with an easy French Onion Soup and Laurie’s light lemon tart for dessert!



I’m sure everyone will enjoy this very delicious meal, especially when it is lovingly prepared… because we all know love is the answer! Happy Valentines Day Everyone!

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Print Thursday

The Perfect Fall Appetizer!


I offered to bring an appetizer the other night to a dinner party and I thought a chicken liver pate sounded delicious and perfect for a fall evening. I found this recipe on Epicurious (original recipe here) and then adapted it after I read through a whole myriad of recipes that used currents and cognac.  A few things I did differently from the Epicurious recipe were: I soaked the chicken livers over night, it is said to take the bitterness out which must have worked because it wasn’t bitter at all. I used the European Style butter, Plugra, to give it a rich and creamy texture and added  Cognac instead of Brandy. I doubled the amount of alcohol, added an anchovy fillet (a lot of the recipes use them and I used it instead of so much salt) and pumpkin pie spice instead of nutmeg and all spice. I think using the pumpkin pie spice and dried currents created those cozy autumn flavors!


It was delicious and everyone loved it… except for the liver haters of course. We ate it all!  I served it with toasted french bread slices that I brushed with olive oil and Vignalta Sea Salt (I use this salt on everything, it’s hard to find so I order it online) and slices of Empire Apples.  Empire Apples taste like a cross between a Gala and a Gravenstein, so sweet and crisp, a perfect fall apple. Look for them in your grocery store now. I purchased mine at Gene’s Quito Market.

P.S. I was given another liver pate recipe from my friend, Laura, but this time I really wanted a recipe that had dried currants and since her recipe is more savory and perfect the way it is, I didn’t want to mess around with changing it.  So, I will make Laura’s next time and I think I’ll go to her house and have her show me (I’m intimidated by the step that you light  the cognac on fire), plus if I do it at her house, I can show you her gorgeous kitchen!!!

Here’s my recipe:

Fall Chicken Liver Pate with Currents



  •  1 1/4 cup finely chopped onion
  •  3 large garlic clove, chopped fine
  •  ½ cup Plugra butter, unsalted
  •  1 1/3 pound chicken livers, trimmed and soaked in milk overnight
  •  ½ cup Cognac
  •  1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  •  1/3 cup dried currants or any dried fruit (apricots and dried cherries are delicious too)
  •  2 anchovy fillet
  • 1 teaspoon of Vignalta Salt and a few turns of fresh cracked pepper
  •  Accompaniment: toasted French bread slices or crackers and crisp fall apples



 In a large heavy skillet cook onion and garlic in butter over moderate heat, stirring, until softened. Pat dry chicken livers and season with Vignalta Salt. Add livers to onion mixture and cook, stirring occasionally, until cooked through but barely pink inside, about 10 minutes. Add cognac and simmer 2 minutes. Transfer hot mixture to a food processor and add pumpkin pie spice, anchovy fillet, and salt and pepper to taste.  Puree mixture until very smooth and cool mixture.

While pate is cooling,  in a bowl cover currants with boiling water and soak 5 minutes.  Drain currants and pat dry between paper towels.

Transfer pate to bowl and stir in currants.  Pack pate in  a crock, I used two large ramekins.  Cover pate with plastic wrap and chill, at least one day, up to 3 days.  Bring pate to room temperature before serving.  I put chopped chives and an edible Nasturtium flower on top to make it look more pleasing.











Print Saturday

“Impressionists on the Water” – A Day on the Bay

One of my favorite things to do while in San Francisco is to visit the special art exhibitions at The Legion of Honor and then go on a hike in Lincoln Park along a trail that takes you right to beautiful views of the Golden Gate Bridge.  So while in San Francisco last weekend for the America’s Cup races, I decided to spend a day to see Impressionists on the Water, a special exhibit that was assembled to coincide with the America’s Cup. The exhibit runs through October 8th, 2013.

caillebotte_regates_a_argenteuil_1893The wonderful exhibit includes Monet, Renoir, Manet, Pissarro, Sisley and Caillebotte. These French impressionistic paintings are  of water, nautical and boat scenes with light dancing across every canvas. This Caillebotte shows the artist in his own boat that he designed called “The Roast Beef”.  A model of his boat is also on display in the last room.


Rent a headset, which is always a fight with Chris, but he actually did enjoy it this time without complaining.  I think he finally realizes that you don’t have to listen to everything and it really is quite interesting thanks to guest curator Christopher Lloyd, a former curator to Queen Elizabeth. The information provided gives a rich history of the art itself and it’s place in the leisure world of  boating and yachting in France during this period.


The exhibit houses 80 paintings, which was ideal for Chris as he starts to get tired if the shows are too long. It’s a small exhibit but very worth it!


After the exhibit, be sure to go through the permanent collection, it takes you through the 14th into the early 20th centuries.



The French neoclassical Legion of Honor which opened in 1924 was a gift to San Francisco by Alma Spreckels to house her art collection.  Alma Spreckels who liked martinis and high stake poker games had a fiery nature and robust energy, my kind of gal!


Alma Spreckels’ Rodin acquisition is on display in the permanent collection, the largest collection outside of Paris.


After the museum, I’m ready to go on my hike!  This Rodin, The Thinker, is one of the casts by Rudier that were commissioned by Rodin, one of Alma Spreckels’ earliest Rodin acquisitions.


Next to the Legion of Honor at the end of the road on 34th Avenue is a hiking trail that leads you on a great walk along the bay.  When you come to a fork, go right.


High on the headland above the Golden Gate.


You will end up back on 34th Avenue and then you can just walk right back up to the museum and your car.  If you don’t make it to this exhibit, there’s always something great on display.  A Matisse exhibit is coming November 9th!

Print Monday

Scarlett loves Camille K jewels

Scarlett and I are in love with Camille K jewels, jewelry designer and friend, Carla Labat, designs couture and ready to wear pieces that I love!  You will too!

Print Thursday

Aperol and Meatballs

When I was in the Northern part of Italy this summer, we were introduced to the beautiful and refreshing drink the Aperol Spritz! So when invited to one of my favorite places, Nicki’s in Napa, I offered to make an Italian dinner of Spaghetti and mozzarella stuffed meatballs and serve Aperol Spritz’s! (more…)