Simone LeBlancÂ is a truly gifted hostess, cook, entertainer and decorator. As a creative consultant creative consultant who specializes in unique gift-giving, Simone has a preternatural ability to know what someone wants. So, when we stopped by with our cameras ready to see her beautiful new homeâ€”including her renovated kitchen that wouldnâ€™t look out of place on a Nancy Meyersâ€™ movie setâ€”we werenâ€™t surprised she created the ultimate inviting spread. While snacking on butternut squash with fresh ricotta and fried sage served on newly-acquired, hand-painted plates from a sojourn in Mexico we got a sneak preview of her debut holiday line for one of our favorite online stores, Terrain (more on that later!), and said hello to her new rescue pup, Mr. Higgins. It was a dreamy morning filled with delicious recipes and simple entertaining ideas that we know youâ€™ll loveâ€”just in time for the holidays!
Whatâ€™s your typical daily diet: My daily diet shifts often – but I always make sure to add as many greens as possible. I’m loving micro greens right now – they’re delicious on everything. I also love afternoon matte tea with almond milk and agave. From 3 pm on, it keeps me going.
Entertaining go-to: My latest is a butternut squash, sage and ricotta crostini. The squash looks so beautiful and feels so seasonal. Simply peel it, chop it, toss with olive oil, salt/pepper and a bit of honey and roast it for 30 mins. I add lemon zest, olive oil and pepper to a fresh farmers’ market ricotta. Pan fry a bit of sage, toast some baguette and voila. Quick, beautiful and delicious.
Dinner on a busy night: I love a quick salmon taco – an easy favorite. Broil the salmon and wrap it in a corn tortilla – add lime, cilantro, sea salt and a little pico de gallo. Easy and SO delicious.
Quick breakfast: Plain yogurt, banana, cashews, cinnamon and a bit of honey.
Changes in diet if youâ€™re gearing up for a big event or vacation: Increase the water intake and all things green. I also dive in to oil of oregano – it staves off anything that stress might bring up in the body. I take the oregano pills and also will do a shot of lemon/cayenne/oregano oil. Instant boost!
Usual workout: I’m a convert to moksha yoga. The heat and flow does wonders for mind and body. It keeps me smiling. I also love Runyon Canyon – the rough, rugged climb. It’s in my backyard!
Necessary indulgence: I’m shamelessly in love with the Butterscotch Budino at Pizzeria Mozza. It is incomparable.
Favorite recipe: My Grandpa’s gumbo.
Kitchen gadget: I have 2 and I love them equally. My Peugot peppermill, which is a complete indulgence. The design is simple and sublime and I love the smell of the freshly ground pepper. I love my alabaster mortar & pestle as well – for grinding everything. Not sure if these qualify as ‘gadgets’, but I’m notorious for taking the simple road when it comes to kitchen accessories.
Pantry essential: rich, roasted coffee beans.
Ingredient that makes everything taste better: Sea salt and lime.