Category Archives: Uncategorized

Julia Child’s Chocolate Mousse

24th August 2015

I love sweets. I have a terrible sweet tooth. Nick on the other hand, does not. So normally if I want sweets, it’s just for me and that’s no fun! The other night we had friends over for dinner so it was the perfect opportunity for me to explore dessert options. I settled on chocolate mousse because I love chocolate mousse and it seemed relatively easy.

I used the David Lebovitz instructions to make my mousse. Make sure you do have a little time ahead of any occasion to make this mousse as it needs to sit at least four hours and will hold for around 4 days.


As with any recipe you make that may call for chocolate, wine, rum, etc. it’s always in your best interest to go with a nicer quality product. If you wouldn’t buy it to drink or eat it, don’t use it in your cooking. So even though the nicer chocolate is more expensive, it’ll be worth it in the end. David recommended chocolate by Green & Black, so I did as told!


It’s a magical site to see that beautiful chocolate melt, especially once you add the stick and a half of butter.. yes a stick and a half.



Is it weird that I love how beautiful beaten egg whites look? Just like a fluffy cloud, and they taste that way too. MMMmmm!


After I finished the recipe I poured the batter into individual ramekins and went ahead and plated it so that I could just pull them out of the fridge and serve! It definitely takes a step out of the process while you’re entertaining. Not to mention, fresh blackberries go fantastic with chocolate!

Bon appetit!


Chocolate Mousse via David Lebovitz
Six to eight servings

Adapted from Mastering the Art of French Cooking (Knopf) by Julia Child.

  • 6 ounces (170g) bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, chopped
  • 6 ounces (170g) unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
  • 1/4 cup (60ml) dark-brewed coffee
  • 4 large eggs, separated
  • 2/3 cup (170g), plus 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 2 tablespoons (30ml) dark rum
  • 1 tablespoon (15ml) water
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

1. Heat a saucepan one-third full with hot water, and in a bowl set on top, melt together the chocolate, butter and coffee, stirring over the barely simmering water, until smooth. Remove from heat.

2. Fill a large bowl with ice water and set aside.

3. In a bowl large enough to nest securely on the saucepan of simmering water, whisk the yolks of the eggs with the 2/3 cup of sugar, rum, and water for about 3 minutes until the mixture is thick, like runny mayonnaise. (You can also use a handheld electric mixer.)

3. Remove from heat and place the bowl of whipped egg yolks within the bowl of ice water and beat until cool and thick, as shown in the photo above. Then fold the chocolate mixture into the egg yolks.

4. In a separate bowl, beat the egg whites with the salt until frothy. Continue to beat until they start to hold their shape. Whip in the tablespoon of sugar and continue to beat until thick and shiny, but not completely stiff, then the vanilla.

5. Fold one-third of the beaten egg whites into the chocolate mixture, then fold in the remainder of the whites just until incorporated, but don’t overdo it or the mousse will lose volume.

6. Transfer the mousse to a serving bowl or divide into serving dishes, and refrigerate for at least 4 hours, until firm. (And up to 4 days.)


Gondola rides in Venice

4th March 2015

Forgive my husband for chatting at the end, but I just wanted to show you the little video I took while we were enjoying our gondola ride! It was definitely romantic snuggling up to hubby taking in the real Venice away from others.

I don’t have any super great tips for getting a gondola ride because they are expensive, and they’re only about 30 minutes, but if it’s what you want to do go for it! We knew we had to do it, a true bucket list item. We did not go to Murano or Burano and the boat tickets there were around 20E so we figured by the time we said no to the Doge’s Palace and going to Murano, we were even to enjoy a romantic evening in one of the romantic places on earth. 


Christmas in February?

10th February 2015

I know I said I was back this fall, and I massively faltered with blogging then, but I really wanted to catch up and just take another look at what I want out of this blog. I realized that decorating my home would only last a little while and the summer really did not consist of much decorating so I just lost content to chat about. I realize that I just want to talk about everything and anything so this is just a bit about life in general with the Dillman family! 

I have decorated more since April, obviously, and we took a 3 week trip to Europe and I’d LOVE to chat more about travel because it’s something I’m fiercely passionate about. I’d love to chat if you have any questions about traveling and tips that I may be able to offer.

So here’s a little look at what Christmas was like here at the Dillman household. It was cute and fun and I was so excited to decorate our new home for Christmas for the first time. We purchased a live tree from the Farmers Market, which was gigantic but majestic!

I was completely obsessed with this Zebra wrapping paper from Target! It was so fun and then I bought the herringbone and candy cane to match. I’m so sad it’s been a month since these beauties have been gone.. Until next Christmas..



9th October 2014

Y’ALL!!! I’m so sorry I disappeared off the face of this earth. I may have disappeared to Europe for a little while, the beach, and summer in general…. BUT! I am back and I realize I don’t want to just talk about decorating, I want to talk about life with y’all too because I have a lot to share (no baby though).

Let me get my thoughts together for right now and hopefully I’ll have a good post or 3 for next week to show you I’m still alive. In the meantime I can’t explain how much I LOVE fall!! I love orange, if you haven’t noticed, the crisp air, the cooler temperatures, warmer clothes, darker nights, and the leaves of course. I really just can’t get enough of fall, especially in North Carolina. It’s a dreamy time of year with wonderful activities and it’s the one time of year I really do love living in NC. So I dressed up my front porch for the occasion!

 (make notice of the spider web in the window y’all ;))
I promise I’ll be back real soon!

Friday Holiday Inspiration

18th April 2014

I hope you all have an amazing Easter weekend!! In the meantime I wanted to droll over some incredibly creative people and their GORGEOUS Easter eggs!! Much more fun than the old way!


Friday Interior Inspiration

21st March 2014

source unknown via Pinterest

I’m loving this spring like weather today and the blooms that have been popping up around town. It’s the beginning of a wonderful time of year and I can’t wait. I also love bringing the outdoors in, when possible and what’s more gorgeous than this insane floral arrangement of Cherry Blossoms in a beautiful ginger jar?! I love it. Have a happy weekend!


For Sale, my dream home

20th March 2014

I don’t know if you have happened to see the buzz that Tom Brady and Gisele Bundchen are selling their Cali estate, but when I see something trending on Facebook, I click it. (Ugh, they really have gotten me with this whole trending thing.)

I immediately fell in love with this house. Holy mother… This house is UNREAL. I died and went to heaven just a little bit. It’s rustic but modern and oh so elegant. I think I might need it.. I better start saving so I can afford it at $50 MILLION.

I hope you enjoy drooling over this gorgeousness today.


View more of this amazing home over at Architectural Digest, and thank me later.

Ikea ektorp sofa inspiration

19th March 2014

I’ve started to really enjoy my new found love for Bloglovin’ (y’all feel free to follow me) and recently saw more inspiration for my favorite little couch that’s currently in our living room, the Ektorp from Ikea. At a cool $399 for a sofa with a slip cover (that you can wash), it’s a fantastic deal. Not to mention I’ve had my sofa for about 5 years now and it’s help up really well. I’m a believer in this sofa, and until I can grow my paycheck to allow me to have my velvet sofa, this sofa should do just fine.

I need to charge up my camera and take some new pics for y’all but life has been a bit crazy. In the meantime here is some inspiration for the Ektorp sofa in their basic white and how much you can do with a neutral sofa.

via Cote De Texas

via Apartment Therapy

via Simple Details

via Pinterest

via Hooked on Houses

via Design Driven

via Pretty Petals

Now don’t you want your own Ektorp sofa?!

Friday Exterior Inspiration

14th March 2014

I changed it up on you, did you see that?! Well, the on and off again warm weather here in Raleigh has been joyous. I’m talking when it’s been 65 to 80 degrees and sunny not the 42 and cold. BUT when it is warm it makes me excited for all the time we will spend outdoors grilling (with our new grill!!!), socializing, beers, reading and just pure relaxation in the sunshine. We have a tiny patio in the back which I can make do with but we’re lacking a bit of privacy and storage, so today’s exterior inspiration is a neat way to get storage and privacy! I think it’s rather nifty, a little too large scale for our backyard but it’s inspiration nonetheless! I hope you all get to enjoy your weekend, it’s supposed to be 65! Yay!!

xoxo, Amanda

SJP has my heart, but more if she liked orange

13th March 2014

If you haven’t had the chance, of course you need to see SJP’s interview with Vogue and her seriously amazing brownstone. Leaves me wishing I lived in that beautiful city, even if it’s freezing there today.
In the mean time, I’m getting very giddy about the pop-up shop over at Furbish today with original paintings by Teil Duncan. Here’s a peak of what’s live at 10am/est. Y’all snatch you one if you can. I’ll be shopping a look today, but I’m going to need to start re-evaluating where to put some art in our new place. 
Hope you have an inspiring day!