Anniversary Dinner Part One: Appetizers, Soup and Decor!

If you have ever been married you know that the wedding flys by and you wake up the next morning shocked at just how fast everything went. Everyone warned me this would happen so throughout our wedding day I made it a point to just look around at my close friends, family members and my groom to try my hardest to engrave those memories in my mind forever. I still had a hard time soaking in every little detail and trying to be so in the moment that you wake up the next day wishing you could go back to the night before. So when our one year anniversary was approaching I knew I wanted to do something special for my husband to relive these special moments over again but this time only focus on the most important part… US!! So I called on the florist who created our wedding to make us a smaller replica table of our wedding and enlisted Hannah Joy’s Cakes, she has been around Houston for about a year now and I didn’t hear about her until after our wedding!! Once I met this young, smart and talented newcomer I just had to have her make us something special!! We kept our top layer from last year that my mom has been babysitting in her freezer but cake might be my favorite thing in the whole world so I was not going to let year old cake spoil this moment for me! Hannah Joy’s Cake hit this one out of the park but we will be chatting cakes later on this week so I won’t give away too much! Once the décor details were set it was time to focus on the food and I wanted to create some new and healthy dishes that both of us would enjoy, so I grabbed one of my favorite wedding presents our bride and groom cookbook set and the new Bon Apetit magazine off the shelf for some inspiration. Since there is so much to discuss from the décor, recipes, kitchen appliances, and much more, I am going to be breaking our anniversary down into a three part post! Todays post is all about the appetizer, soup and décor! Below is also a free printable download of our menu! 


 To download menu click on the image above or Download menu here! 

The decor was one of my favorite details about our wedding and when Scott made up our arrangement for our anniversary dinner I literally squealed when I saw it! The team at Wedding by Lisa, is absolutely the best! They really do care about each wedding/event they are working and always go above and beyond to make sure you are taken care of!! Scott and Lisa added extra little details to our wedding that Ryan and I didn’t even know about just because they wanted our day to be perfection and it made all the difference!! I took a lot of decor photos so this whole week I will be sharing more of them! 

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For our appetizer I wanted to keep things light and easy incase I was stuck in the kitchen Ryan could snack and chat with me over a glass of wine (luckily I was on time even a little early for the first time in my life) and let’s be honest… who doesn’t love a good cheese plate?!?


Manchego cheese is our my absolute favorite and not to be too crazy about food but the 6 months aged is the best- the 3 month aged is a little too creamy and not strong enough for me.


I also wanted to add some fruit and nuts to round out our spread, so I added apples, grapes and pumpkin seeds (since it is the fall).When you are only cooking for two it is easy to go over board so I only used a bundle of grapes, 1 small apple, ¼ cup of pumpkin seeds and a small wedge of cheese. I knew there was a lot more food coming!

Next was the first course, the soup!! I absolutely love this soup it is the perfect marriage between healthy and indulgent (see what I did there)! I made the Watercress Veloute and used the recipe from the latest issue of Bon Appetit Holiday Entertaining but I twigged mine a little bit!


Watercress Veloute
Serves 4
A surprisingly easy to make soup that is full of nutrients that tastes like potato soup!
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
20 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
20 min
  1. 2 cups of low sodium chicken broth
  2. 1 tablespoon of extra-virgin olive oil
  3. 2 shallots, finely chopped
  4. 2 bunches of watercress, chopped (including tender stems)
  5. 3 stalks of kale (optional)
  6. sea salt
  7. pepper
  8. 2 small russet potatoes, (about 5 inches long) peeled and thinly sliced
  9. 2 tablespoons of butter
  10. 2 tablespoons of chopped fresh chives
  1. 1. Bring chicken broth to a boil. Meantime, chop shallots, potatoes and watercress.
  2. 2. In a large saucepan, heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat and add in the shallots, cook until soft.
  3. 3. Add watercress, salt and pepper and sauté until wilted.
  4. 4. Add in chopped potatoes and hot broth and bring to a boil for 2 minutes. Reduce heat and simmer until potatoes are soft about 8-10 minutes.
  5. 5. Add soup to a blender or a food processor and puree until smooth. Stir in butter and season to taste.
  6. 6. Pour soup into bowls and top with chives and optional toppings: creme of fraiche or parmesan cheese.
  7. 7. Serve hot and enjoy!
  1. Optional Toppings: 1/3 cup of creme fraiche or parmesan cheese
Adapted from Bon Appetit Fall/Winter 2014
Adapted from Bon Appetit Fall/Winter 2014
Blonde Pantry

Don’t let the green color fool you, when I asked Ryan to taste test it, I could see his lips quivering a little bit right before he tasted it but after he’s response was, “That is not what I thought that was going to taste like at all… I really like it”… lol yee of little faith!


Truthfully, you cannot taste the watercress! This soup tastes like potato soup, it is exactly like when you put kale or spinach into a smoothie, it changes the color but not the taste!


In the photo above and below you can see our setup once we finally sat down to eat, the candlelight on the gold tablecloth was gorgeous!!


Tomorrow we will be covering how to make the amazingly simple salad and dressing! How did you celebrate your anniversary I would love to hear!!


About Marla

Welcome to my slice of the internet I’m Marla, a dietitian & creator of The Blonde Pantry. A website that encompasses food, health, nutrition, travel, lifestyle, & home decor. Here you will find what makes me, me and hopefully, I can add something tasty to your table, something beautiful to your home and something thoughtful to your mind.


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