Natalie Notions » Where Taste Meets Travel

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risotto with Alfredo sauce

My boyfriend loves a creamy Alfredo sauce, but unfortunately I don’t love it so I never make it. It’s too rich and creamy and thick for me. I prefer a traditional Italian red sauce. I searched to find a recipe that would please us both and combined what I liked from two different recipes to make the below. This makes quite a bit of sauce for two, but perfect for serving 4-6 people.

Ingredients

  • 2 heads of cauliflower
  • 1 cup of vegetable stock
  • 8 cloves of garlic
  • 2 cups milk of your choice
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons freshly ground pepper
  • 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 ounces grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
  • 1 teaspoons grated lemon rind

recipe with fresh squeeze lemon

Directions

  1. Peel and chop the garlic. Melt 2 tablespoons of butter in a large saucepan over medium heat and add the garlic. Saute the garlic until it’s soft but not dark brown.
  2. Chop the cauliflower, removing most of the stems.
  3. Bring the vegetable broth to a boil in a large pot. Add in the cauliflower. Cook 15-20 minutes or until very tender.
  4. Place cauliflower mixture in a blender, which you will need to add in batches. Add in the garlic mixture, 1 cup of milk, the remaining butter, pepper, lemon juice, salt and 1 ounce of cheese. Blend until smooth.
  5. Remove half of the sauce and place in a pot. Add in another batch of cauliflower and the rest of the cheese. Blend until smooth.
  6. Remove half of the sauce and place in the pot. Add in the rest of the cauliflower and milk. Blend until smooth and add to the pot.
  7. Stir the sauce to incorporate the different batches.
  8. Serve warm over pasta or risotto rice.

Cauliflower Alfredo sauce

Note: Add broccoli, shrimp or scallops to create a delicious and healthy meal this weekend.

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Beverly Hills street

Earlier this year I mentioned that I would be posting travel guides to the different Los Angeles neighborhoods. I posted on Hollywood and now posting about Beverly Hills.

STAY

Mr. C Beverly Hills – Located outside of downtown Beverly Hills, this hotel flies under the radar with many, which makes it perfect for those who want a pleasant night stay without the big to-do. And another reason why it has become popular with celebrities looking for a peaceful escape. The hotel is a throwback to the bygone Hollywood era, with a sunken lobby bar and cocktail waiters in white coats. It feels like you’ve walked into a Humphrey Bogart film.

Beverly Hills Hotel – This is a classic. The large pink hotel is surrounded by lush palm trees and tropical foliage, which definitely makes you feel like you’re on a California vacation. For over 100 years this hotel has welcomed guests and stars. Over the years it has a remained true to the original architecture and charm. The famed Polo Lounge still seats celebs and plays host to Hollywood business meetings.

Beverly Hills hotel

SEE

Will Rogers Memorial Park – A relaxing park in the high end neighborhood, it opened in 1915 as the first municipal park in the city. At that time it was called Sunset Park but was renamed after Will Rogers in 1952. It’s the perfect park for an afternoon stroll, picnic and rest to read a book on a warm day.

Greystone Mansion and Park – This historic landmark manor home has a haunted history. Edward Laurence Doheny, one of the first to strike oil in Los Angeles, eventually became one of the largest producers of oil in the late 1800s. As a wedding present, Doheny gave the property to his only son Ned. Only five months after Ned and his family moved in he was found shot to death inside his home at the age of 36. I don’t want to give too much away, but you can learn about the history Los Angeles and the Doheny family at Greystone.

Graystone Mansion haunted LA

SHOP

Rodeo Drive – It’s a bit cliche, but you have to stroll the famous shopping street, especially if it’s your first time to Beverly Hills. There are the high end stores, like Chanel and Louis Vuitton but there are also more reasonable shops like Brooks Brothers and Guess. It’s a great for people watching and you can always spot a sports car or Bentley driving down the street or parked outside of a store.

Rodeo Drive Shopping

Note: Photo credits – 1, 2, 3, 4

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April Beauty Favorites

This month I found myself using more natural beauty products. Maybe because April has been coined Earth Month and no longer celebrated just one day. This month I did a lot of reflecting and meditating. There wasn’t a week that went by that I didn’t do a sage cleansing of either my room, my car or myself. Native American tribes are known to use sage for many reasons, including clearing spaces and spiritual purification. This can be a spiritual ritual or used for aromatherapy.

Palo Santo Essential Oil

My boyfriend got me this high quality Palo Santo Essential Oil from a boutique shop in Venice and I’ve been putting it in my diffuser every week. Palo Santo oil is an uplifting and inspiring fragrance used for cleansing and refreshing a space. It’s also used to clear bad energy and bring in good fortune. There are many other benefits of the oil including helping heal skin infections, acne and is a mosquito repellent. It’s uplifting aroma also helps with depression, panic attacks and anxiety.

Voluspa goji tarocco orange candle

Voluspa candles smell luxurious and come in either a cute tin or beautiful glass jar. I love the Goji Tarocco Orange scent. The candle is made from a coconut wax blend with no parabens or sulfates and burns clean. I burn the candle on the weekends when I’m writing or want to create a warm cozy environment. After the candle has burned completely you can clean it out and use the tin to hold small trinkets or flowers.

rose quartz stone

I keep this lovely Rose Quartz stone by my bed and use it for meditation. This is the stone of the heart and is known as the Crystal of Unconditional Love. It speaks directly to the heart chakra and dissolves emotional wounds, fears and resentment. The stone carries soft energy of compassion, peace, tenderness and healing. Rose Quartz can be used many different ways, one of which is to recognize the beauty of other and oneself. In the ancient world it was used for facial beautification, much like at-home masks and facial we do today, it was thought to be used to clear the complexion and prevent wrinkles. A Rose Quartz necklace will always hang close to your heart.

Note: Maybe all of this positive clearing is the reason why I’ve been feeling so center and grounded.

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maxi dress and leather jacket

My favorite spring combo is a maxi dress and leather jacket. The two help beat the changing weather. The jacket keeps you warm on chilly nights and the long dress covers your legs to help keep you warm, and cover the winter white legs. At least that’s what it does for me. A leather or vegan leather {which is what this jacket is} goes with just about anything and everything. You can wear it to the office and to a wedding. This is one item that I can wear all year long.

Maxi Dress {similar}, Anthropologie Jacket, Anthropologie Clutch, Banana Republic Ring, Swarovski Bracelet

maxi dress and leather jacketmaxi dressspring maxi dress

Note: Don’t put away your leather jacket with the rest of your winter coats.

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Hollywood sign

The Line Hotel is a trendy boutique hotel in Koreatown near downtown Los Angeles. It has quickly become the place to stay for the trendy out of town set. Modern and minimal in design with a quirky flare, all rooms have floor to ceiling windows. My room had a beautiful view of the Hollywood Sign and Griffith Observatory nestled on top of the Hollywood hills.

The Line Hotel

The pool is located on the second floor, but definitely seems like it’s a lot higher up. The Commissary, is a greenhouse style restaurant located a few feet from the pool. Plants hang from the ceilings and drip from the walls. The food is amazing and delicately prepared, breakfast, lunch and dinner. This is my favorite thing about the hotel. Even if you’re not staying there you can still come and enjoy the tasty food and beautiful scene.

Commissary at The Line HotelThe Line Hotel pool

Note: What’s your favorite hotel in Los Angeles?

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