Recipes

Honey Cheese Bread ala Mulligans

Back in days of yore, I worked at this bar called Mulligans. It closed shortly after my friends and I left college, as college bars do from time to time. The good thing is, the two things they made well, honey mustard sauce and honey cheese bread, I learned how to make, so they can live on! If I ever saw the sous chef again I’d kiss her right on the mouth for teaching me the recipes (thank you Miss Loretta!).

I haven’t really formulated a true recipe for their honey mustard sauce because it’s kind of one of those “little bit of this/little bit of that” type things. I’m working on it.

The honey cheese bread though? I’ve perfected that bad boy. So without further adieu…

 

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Ingredients:

  • 2 10-12″ hoagie rolls, sliced in half lengthwise*
  • 3 tablespoons of salted butter (if you want to use unsalted, just add about a teaspoon of salt after the butter is melted)
  • 2¬†heaping tablespoons honey
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese**
  • 1 cup shredded swiss cheese**

*Feel free to try to fancy it up with French bread or Italian bread, but the hoagie roll is what Mulligans used and I think it’s the best.

**You can buy the shredded cheese but don’t buy that fancy really tiny shredded cheese. You want a bigger shred, which is why I prefer to just shred it myself.

Directions:

  1. Melt the butter in the microwave, then add the honey to the melted butter and stir together.
  2. This is the crucial part so pay attention – Spoon the honey butter mixture onto the bread but as you’re doing it, kind of push the spoon into the bread so that the honey butter mixture really soaks into the bread. Then let it sit for a minute or two. This is usually when I shred the cheese, so I know I’m giving the time for that delicious honey butter to really permeate the bread.
  3. Combine your shredded cheeses and top the bread. It’ll look like a lot of cheese but it’s really not once it’s melted. Each slice should have a 1/2 cup of cheese on it and it’ll look pretty piled up.
  4. Place the bread on a cookie sheet because odds are some of that cheese is going to spill over.
  5. I cook it in my toaster oven on toast (level 5) but you can also put it in the oven at 350 for about 3-5 minutes. Just watch it until it looks like the level of toasty you want it. I like mine a little toastier so I leave it in closer to 7 minutes.
  6. Then take it out, slice it up (or don’t) and enjoy! It’s that simple ūüôā
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Sunday Dinner – Salad Dressing Machine

So while perusing my recently purchased 5 in 5 Cookbook, there was this fun little recipe for Turkey Cutlet with Brussels Sprout Salad

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I’m still weaning Zack into the world of brussels sprouts (and myself for that matter) and I’d never made a dressing per se (marinades sure, but never a dressing)¬†so I was a touch worried about how everything would turn out, but like any other recipe, as long as you follow the directions, you’re usually safe. Well, the vinaigrette salad that went on top of the salad drove Zack to¬†eating seconds! That almost never happens with him and vegetables so I knew this had to be a success.

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I couldn’t find the recipe online and I don’t want to be infringing on any kind of copyright so just do yourself a favor and get the book. It’s worth the money, I promise. Or, check out this website with vinaigrette variations…¬†it’s got a¬†great¬†list of recipes is full of great variations, and I’ve made 3 so far.¬†All delicious, but my favorite¬†is the parmesan-pepper. It’s great on a pasta salad.¬†It’s so much cheaper than regular salad dressing, and a lot of them make great marinades. Plus you can make just as much as you need, and not have salad dressing bottles hogging up your fridge door (even though they still do at the moment).

So, anyway, as I was eating the brussels sprouts I was thinking about all the other things this dressing would be good on, and I kept coming back to thinking it would be good on some fish. It seemed like a perfect combo, with a few modifications. So, I bought about a pound of cod (for Zack and myself, but it could’ve served a 3rd) and made up the following recipe:

Dressing turned Saute Sauce: 

Ingredients:
1/4 cup sherry vinegar 
3 tablespoons of whole grain mustard 
2 teaspoons of garlic (or 3 if you’re like me and like a lot of garlic)
1/4 cup fresh chopped tarragon
1/2 cup butter** 

Instead of using a whole cup of oil which is what the dressing would call for, I just used about half a stick of butter. Maybe a little less. I thought a cup of oil sounded a touch ridiculous in anything other than a dressing.

I should mention first and foremost, since I rarely recommend gadgets/appliances, that there is one that I consider one of the best devices ever:

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I think it’s called some kind of “shaker dressing mixer” or something to that effect. It’s by all the kitchen gadgets in Bed Bath and Beyond, and I even saw them at Dick’s for mixing protein shakes or something. They have¬†prettier¬†ones¬†too.¬†I wouldn’t set mine out at the table after making a dressing, but the prettier ones? I totally would. So, onto the recipe…

–¬†Heat¬†up a skillet, and¬†melt the butter on a medium heat.

РTake the non-butter ingredients and toss them into the shaker and mixed it up for about a minute (or pour all the ingredients in a bowl and whisk), pour the mixture in with the butter in the pan.

– Add the fish. and turned it over a few times to get it covered in the mixture.

РLower the burner to med/low and put a top on the fish for about 10 minutes.

It’s kind of hard to time fish but mine was a pretty thick, so mine took around 10-15 minutes to cook but it varies a lot based on the thickness of the fish. It’s important to just cook it until it flakes apart. It’s one of those things you just have to try until you get it right. And make sure it’s never translucent in the center. Hopefully it won’t take you too many tries to get right! haha. I mean worst case you throw it back in the pan and cook it a little longer.

I served the fish with some green beans and carrots (ok so it also had pancetta, and garlic). I kind of wish I’d made some rice too, but it was really good either way!

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So anyway, hope you all enjoy!

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Sunday Dinner – Testing some new recipes

So now that American Idol is finally over, I’m basically wondering when Top Chef is¬†starting. We also have a garden that is fully done as far as the planting/cleaning portion is concerned. Now we are just waiting for those home grown vegetables to grow!

Anyway, I think all these things lead me subconsciously, to cooking a lot more. Winter lasted so damn long I was just buying cookbooks to bide my time…. I was really happy with my selection.

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My neighbor Noelle told me about this one by Michael Symon. She said all the recipes she’d tried had been good and most cook really fast as long as you are prepared with all your ingredients when they start. We’ve cooked a few so far and I don’t think any have taken longer than 30 minutes. So far, I’ve made the Frittata with Fontina and Fried Salami (amazeballs), he taught me how to make some dressing that I ended up using in a fish recipe the other day (that’ll be on the blog at some point because it was good times). The newest one I tried was also a take on another recipe. I think I’d do it differently, if I did it again, but it was good! Good as hell, if you will…

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Yup, Eggs in Hell. This is actually a bit of a donated recipe to the cookbook, as it’s actually Mario Batali’s recipe. No wonder it’s so delicious! No offense to Michael Symon, of course.

Anyway, the recipe said to make the recipe and then top it with bread, but I decided it might be fun on top of some pasta. What isn’t fun on top of pasta?

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What I was actually most worried about were the eggs. For one, I’m not usually a “runny egg” fan… I like them fried, as nature intended. However, I’m always one of those people who likes to try something every couple of years, to see if maybe my taste buds have changed their minds. It worked with oranges and most citrus, tomatoes, bratwurst (still not with grapefruit, tuna fish, pickles or olives). I wanted runny eggs to be one of those things I like. They just look so good.

So, since I don’t really like my eggs¬†that way, I never have to cook them that way, so this runny egg recipe was something I’m not familiar with. It seemed a lot like poaching an egg, except instead of water, it was tomato sauce. We actually made twice the sauce and kept half to freeze and eat later because it was good. My husband and I both like some zip on occasion, and this was a great way to accomplish that. And it’s simple which I love. I do not like a sauce with 100 ingredients. This one had 5. Garlic, onion, jalapenos, tomatoes and basil (crushed red pepper, optional, we opted).

I thought the eggs were a tiny bit overcooked but when we punched into the eggs, they were definitely runny, so I suppose, mission accomplished.

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So, do I like this particular recipe because the egg gets pretty mixed into the pasta and just kind of becomes part of the sauce. I still don’t think I’d like it on my plate at breakfast with just toast to wipe it up with. Blech. I’m not there yet. But this way, it was really good.

So anyway, check out the book. It gets 2 thumbs up from this girl!

photo 4Oh, it’s also good topped with some parmesan cheese for that saltiness. I used linguini because it was what I had, but I would’ve preferred if it were angel hair pasta. And I do wish I’d had some good crusty garlic bread to go with it!

And one more time, in case you missed it, get the recipe, RIGHT HERE! 

Categories: Recipes, Sunday Dinner | 1 Comment

Shrimp and Brussel Sprout Pasta

With Zack out of town this week I had two things in mind:

1. Make everything that Zack doesn’t like and I do, and get my fill of it
2. Try not to go grocery shopping, just try emptying the ridiculously full refrigerator.

This recipe accomplished both. I knew I needed to use up the brussel sprouts before they went bad (leeks too but that’s for another recipe). I also really wanted to eat some fish because Zack is never in the mood for seafood. Well, I didn’t have any fish but I had shrimp.

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After some googling to see that recipes including those two ingredients existed, I figured I could give it a shot. I’ve only made brussel sprouts one other time and that was in a salad so I knew I’d have to figure that out. I decided to roast them and get everything else ready while they were cooking (who knew they’d take 30 minutes in the oven at 400¬įF).

I’m not going to lie, this all takes probably an hour or so from beginning to end, and a fair amount of dirty dishes but it’s one of the better recipes I’ve thought of recently. Here’s how it goes. Oh, and trust me, read all this through before you start the recipe so you get the timing right.

Ingredients for the Brussel Sprouts

1 lb brussel sprouts
1 tablespoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
2 teaspoon fresh minced garlic
3 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 cup parmesan cheese

Ingredients for Pasta and Shrimp

1/2 box of the pasta of your choice (I went with linguine because it’s what I had)
1 lb of large peeled and de-vained shrimp (I took the tails off but you certainly don’t have to)
1 small yellow onion (or just use 1/2 cup of frozen diced onion, which is what I used)
1 diced green pepper (or 1/2 cup of frozen diced green pepper)
2 teaspoons of olive oil

Ingredients for Mozzarella Cream Sauce

1 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup parmesan cheese
2/3 cups mozzarella cheese
3 tablespoons of butter
2 teaspoons of minced garlic
1 large teaspoon of crushed red pepper (I probably used closer to a tablespoon because I like it spicy)

*This recipe serves about 3 adults. If you make a bit more pasta it can easily serve more!

So here’s how the order works:

1. Prep the brussel sprouts and begin cooking the brussel sprouts
Preheat the oven to 400¬įF.¬†Cut off the bottoms of the brussel sprouts and quarter them, then mix all the remaining brussel sprout ingredients EXCEPT the parmesan, in a bowl. Pour out onto cookie sheet and sprinkle the parmesan cheese over the top. Then put it in the oven. That’s really all you’re doing with the brussel sprouts. They’re going to cook for around 30 minutes and I do recommend stirring them up about halfway in.

2. Begin to boil the water for the pasta

3. In a large saute pan, begin cooking the onion and green pepper in a small amount of olive oil.
When the onion is translucent, add the shrimp and turn it down to low to let the shrimp cook (for about 5 minutes if your shrimp is cooked and frozen, 8 minutes of it’s raw)

4. When the water is boiling,
Put your pasta in the water. At this same time, you want to take the shrimp mixture out of the saute pan and pour it into a large serving bowl.

5. Using the saute pan your shrimp was in, begin your sauce
You want to add the garlic, crushed red pepper, and butter and saute on low until the butter is melted. Then add the cream and parmesan and whisk for about 6 minutes. Then add the mozzarella and whisk slowly until the mozzarella is melted. Around this time your pasta should be done (if you’re cooking linguine).

6. Combine the drained pasta, shrimp/onion/pepper mixture, and the cream sauce.

7. Top with the roasted brussel sprouts and a dash more of parmesan for looks.  

8. Enjoy!

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Irish Brown Bread

I know, Baccala certainly doesn’t sound Irish, and to be perfectly honest my maiden name isn’t Irish either (my dad there in the middle of that picture below practically screams 80s Italian). But my heart? My heart is Irish. My grandmother was a generation removed of being “off the boat” Irish but for all intents and purposes, she was super Irish. She was also a pretty awesome lady in general. She was my first babysitter, taught me most of the cooking and crafting I know, and was an all around fun lady!

That’s her in the middle with me in her lap

There’s not a day that goes by I don’t think about her. Most of my recipes are some derivation of her recipes and she’s the one that took me to Ireland (along with some other family members). With that in mind, around St. Patricks Day I always think about her and among my many cravings for her various recipes (tacos, pineapple stuff), one of them is her brown bread recipe. A lot of people think they’ve had brown bread when what they really mean is Soda Bread. My grandmom made both, but let me tell you folks,

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First of all, Brown Bread? No raisins. Brown Bread? Not horrifically dry or scone-like. Brown Bread? Coated with delicious butter. There’s hardly even a comparison. And when you go around Ireland tasting the goodness and heartiness that is Irish cuisine, there wasn’t a single meal I ate that didn’t come with a side of this delicious bread. Nobody wants soda bread when the other option is this bread!

It’s impossible to duplicate, I’ve decided. We’ve made a few different attempts at it but they just aren’t the same. Maybe it was her Irishness that made it more delicious? I don’t know. My husband was a breads and pastry major when he was in cooking school so I had him try his hands at it a few times and he came as close as anyone I know outside of Ireland, but then we lost the recipe he used. So again, I sought out to try and find one that was close to hers. The recipe I tried this time was from looking through my grandmothers cook books and finding what I thought she used. It was close but it lacked something. Like, maybe¬†it wasn’t salty enough? Maybe had we used a saltier butter spread on top it would’ve been ok because the texture was SPOT-ON! It just wasn’t quite the flavor I was looking for. It was SUPER close though. Like, minimal ingredients off. I knew I was close. I felt like it was missing a wheat germ or something. Then I decided to call in the big guns and sent a message to my Grandmothers best friend Margaret, who is in fact, off the boat Irish, and quite the lovely lady. Low and behold, she’d had my Grandmothers recipe and got it from my very own Aunt! Der! Why I hadn’t thought of this sooner, is beyond me…. But, the important thing is that it was found and I have it and I can make it whenever my heart desires now! And now, I shall share it with the world in hopes that everyone can try the deliciousness that is my Grandmothers brown bread recipe:

Irish Brown Bread

Ingredients:
2 cups ground whole wheat flour (best to use stone ground whole wheat)
2/3 cup wheat bran
1/3 cup wheat germ
1 and 1/2 cups unbleached white flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1 1/2 cup buttermilk (or a little more as needed to make gently pliable dough)
Directions:
1. Mix dry ingredients by hand

2. Add buttermilk & mix with hands. Add more buttermilk if necessary to moisten the flour

3. Kneed about 10 times

4. Scoop into well greased, round 1 1/2-2 quart casserole that has a lid (I couldn’t do this because I don’t own one so I just cooked it on a dusted with flour baking sheet)

5. Make a 1/2 inch deep cross in the center

6. Cover & bake – middle shelf – 400 degrees for 50 mins (if you aren’t cooking it in that casserole dish with a lid, around the 30 minute mark, cover the bread with some aluminum foil)

7. Remove from oven and let cool for at least an hour and a half (or make two so you can eat one hot, quickly and one later. The reason to do this is because if you don’t let it cool, the bread tends to be really¬†crumbly¬†and more difficult to eat. While it’s hard to resist when it comes out of the oven, it’s for the best, I promise. And you can always re-heat it when it’s time to eat it, if you want to eat it warm)

8. Enjoy with family & friends (that’s totally in my grandmothers recipe! Ever the entertainer and baker of food for others!)

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Oh also, if you’re smart, you’ll make it with a delicious lamb stew, Colcannon, or some kind of Shephards Pie! All are delicious. I went with the lamb stew ūüôā I’ll share that recipe with you soon! Just have to type it on up.

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Macaroni And Cheese, Two Ways

I’ve made a lot of macaroni and cheese in my life. Lots of it. Like this one¬†(not a fan of the onion), recently this one¬†(too many breadcrumbs), and the most reliable standby:

american-kraft-macaroni-cheese-family-size-dinner-306-pDon’t hate, you know it’s amazing. As fun as it is to try new recipes, or box made recipes, my favorite, and the best I’ve ever tasted, is brought to us by this woman (and this cookbook, which I’ve had since college):

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Diabetic or not, this woman can cook. You can find the recipe here (of course Oprah would have the recipe). The only thing I do differently when I made it is that I just buy an 8 oz bag of cheese blend. And actually, I usually buy 2 because I almost always use more cheese. ¬†The other thing, is that since I serve macaroni and cheese as a side dish, I just make half a recipe because unless you’re feeding an army, you don’t need that much. Usually I’m only feeding 2 people (and I still have plenty leftover). If I’m making it in general, it’s more for family/friend gatherings, but I didn’t have any upcoming gatherings and still wanted to make it, so in order to rationalize it, I told myself I’d try it a few different ways! That’s always a good excuse to make too much food: experimentation!

I decided to still only make the half recipe and instead of using elbow macaroni, I had to use shells because it was all I had. Oh, and I also only had some cheddar, parmesan and mozzarella, so I just used that. I can’t say it tasted all that different.

So here’s what I did: Pulled Pork mac-n-cheese, and seafood (mostly crab) mac-n-cheese. Here’s how I did it:

I basically made the half recipe to the point right before baking it, and then started the process, so basicallly I used half of the recipe I made for each macaroni and cheese style below.

For those bad at math, the amounts look a little something like this (baking instructions are the same)

  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1/2 pound elbow macaroni (or bowtie, or shells, or penne, you can use what you have)
  • 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) plus 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1/4 cup (2 ounces) shredded Muenster cheese
  • 1/4 cup (2 ounces) shredded mild Cheddar cheese
  • 1/4 cup (2 ounces) shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
  • 1/4 cup (2 ounces) shredded Monterey Jack
  • 1 cups half-and-half
  • 1/2 cup (4 ounces) Velveeta , cut into small cubes
  • 1 large eggs , lightly beaten
  • Dash of seasoned salt and ground black pepper

Remember, prepare according to these directions (and later, bake according to these directions also)

Also, I cooked these in the same 9×11 pan, and separated them with some aluminum foil. It worked totally fine.

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Pulled Pork Macaroni and Cheese 

Take half your macaroni mixture (prior to the baking steps)
Mix in 2 cups of pulled pork (we used a rack of leftover ribs) – we also added about 1/4 cup of Mermaid BBQ, because why not? Also, I’m mentioning this now because I regret not doing it, but this would’ve been made that muh more awesome if we’d topped it with some French’s Fried Onions! Man that would’ve been delicious! They make so many things better. This would’ve been one of them. At least we know for next time.
Mix all the ingredients together, then top with about 1/3 cup of cheese and bake according to the website (35 minutes at 350 degrees).

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Seafood Macaroni and Cheese

I used 1 cup (1/2 of a 1lb container) of lump crab meat** And 1 cup of cooked shrimp meat (no shells). I like to buy seasoned peal and eat shrimp, and then peal it. If you aren’t using seasoned shrimp, that’s ok, just use the plain cooked and pealed shrimp and add more Old Bay. How much Old Bay? Well if you’re using steamed shrimp, I’d just add a heaping tablespoon to the crab meat. If you’re not, you probably want 3 heaping tablespoons of Old Bay combined to the crab and shrimp mixture.
Mix all the ingredients together, then top with about 1/3 cup of cheese, and 3 handfuls of crushed Old Bay Crab Chips (if you’re not from around here, you can still buy them here). Then¬†bake¬†according to the website¬†(35 minutes at 350 degrees).

** Use the lump. Do NOT buy the special. I will be personally offended if you use the special. Special is only even remotely acceptable in dips and broth. Also, special note, make sure you feel around all the piece of crab meat to make sure there are no shells. Usually the lump is clean but it’s better to be safe than sorry. Your intestines will thank you later.

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Pork and Pineapple Enchiladas

Hi folks!

It’s been a while since I posted a recipe up here but my dinner tonight was just too good not to share! Really easy too which is ALWAYS a plus! I always like doing leftovers a completely different way. It makes the pain of eating leftovers that much less. And let me tell you, we had a hell of a lot of leftovers.

Yesterday we made some pork bbq using the nectar of the gods…

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Yes, that’s Mermaid BBQ, but this is their Pineapple Teriyaki, which we’ve only used once before. I was excited to try it with something else (the first time we made it with chicken on the grill). ¬†It’s so freaking good. Like most of their sauces! And I only say most because I’ve only tried 2 (and their rub) but they have more that I need to get to trying!

So back to the leftovers. I had made some pulled pork sammies but as we were eating them my husband had mentioned that he wasn’t sure what I was planning to do with the pork. I asked him what he meant and he was all, “Well, I dunno, I was thinking you might do like, tacos or something.” Interesting. I hadn’t thought of doing anything but sandwiches but as soon as he said it I got to thinking about it… and I’m glad he mentioned it because they were delicious.

Ingredients

3-4 cups of pork bbq*
1/2 bottle of Mermaid BBQ Pineapple Teriyaki sauce (you’ll be using another bottle and a half if you make the pork)
1/2 bag of mixed sliced peppers (or 2 fresh peppers, sliced/diced)
1/2 bag of diced onion (or 1/2 of a large onion, diced)
1 large can of crushed pineapple
2 cups of cheddar cheese
1 package of 10″ tortillas, any variety you like.

*If you’re making the pulled pork, you’ll need about a 5lb pork shoulder, 2 onions (rough chopped), and 2 jars of Mermaid Pineapple Teriyaki BBQ sauce¬†(which we cooked in 1.5 bottles of the BBQ sauce, in our slow cooker for about 8 hours – it had been a 6 lb pork shoulder).¬†¬†

So, as for how the process works, it’s pretty simple.

First you want to pre-heat your oven to 350. While that’s heating up, you’re going to re-heat your pork to a warmer non-fridge temp (if you’re not using fresh pork bbq) so that you’re not putting it into the enchiladas cold (1 minute in the microwave should be enough). Then you want to saute the peppers and onions in a pan until the onions are translucent, it should take about 8 minutes or so.

 

You then want to lay out your tortillas next to your pan of pepper/onion mixture, your opened can of pineapple and your pork, so as to have a nice little assembly line. Fill each tortilla in this order – 2 heaping tablespoons of the mixed pepper/onion mixture,¬†¬†1/2 – 3/4 cup of pork, and 2 heaping tablespoons of the crushed pineapple. It’ll look a little something like this:

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The fold the tortilla up, and lay them into the pan. Then you want to top the closed tortillas with the 1/2 bottle of BBQ sauce. A few heaping tablespoons of pineapple spread out evenly (about this much – see below)

 

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Then you want to finish it off with your cheese, and put it into the oven for about 20 minutes. When everything is said and done you’ll have something that looks like this:

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See all that delicious crispy cheese on the side? I like to finish it off with the low broiler for like, 3 minutes, but watch it so it doesn’t burn because boilers are a tricky mistress! But, a nice crispy top cheese layer is worth the risk!

I served it with some rice and refried beans and it was sooo yummy! The pineapple was such a delicious addition to the enchiladas and made them really refreshing but at the same time it was very filling. I couldn’t even finish my whole enchilada…. ok I did, but it took me a few breaks.

I hope you like them!

 

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Super Bowl Party

Hey folks,

So, first I posted all the deliciousness I was thinking about making, but there’s a little difference between what I could make and what I ended up making. Since I pretty much invited myself over to my friend Ashleys house and asked her to have a party, so as not to have to venture into the City, I thought I’d try to make as many of the appetizers as I could (and cupcakes, not pictured but they were chocolate with purple icing and black sprinkles). Plus, who doesn’t need a reason to gorge? Isn’t that what American and the Super Bowl is all about? And I am nothing, if not a True American.

So for the menu, I wanted a little mix of slightly healthy, medium healthy, and possible entry for TIWYF. I think the menu is definitely a good little compromise.

Under the slightly healthy appetizer category, we made a shrimp salsa.

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I wasn’t sure if it would turn out but I actually thought it was pretty awesome. I used¬†this recipe¬†almost exactly except that I used a little less shrimp. The recipe says to use a pound and I could only find a 12oz bag, but I thought it was fine. I also didn’t use quite as much cilantro because I’m just not a huge cilantro fan. There comes a point where I think it tastes like soap. I don’t know what it is. Oh, and of course I’m serving it with blue (but purple for tonight) tortilla chips.

Next up we have another mostly healthy recipe with these purple deviled eggs.

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I didn’t really love the recipe ideas as far as how to dye the eggs. I saw that you could dye them with beet juice, red wine, etc. I decided to just go old school and use food coloring. I think they turned out pretty well. I used my moms deviled egg “recipe”. The thing about my moms recipe is that really it’s just “a little bit of this, a little bit of that”. Not exactly the best recipe to hand out to everyone but I’ll still put the general recipe at the bottom of the page, and how to dye them. I guess everyone has their own way of making them.

Next we’ll go with a slightly less healthier recipe, in my TIWYF candidate – bacon wrapped lil’ smokies in a brown-sugar maple glaze.

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Sorry for the picture, it seems the only one I took was mid-cooking so the bacon wasn’t totally done and it may look like they’re sitting in grease but I promise it’s just the glaze. Also, I would take them out of the glaze and put them on a plate to serve them just to prevent them from getting TOO greasy.

This¬†is the recipe I used and it made about… 60 lil’ smokies? Give or take? It filled a 9×13 pan. And they were freaking DELICIOUS! I cannot wait to make these again for any kind of food eating extravaganza! They were so simple to make (maybe 20 minutes to wrap everything in bacon) and unlike how the recipe said I should freeze the lil’ smokies, I just took them right out of the fridge with the bacon and wrapped them up, and it worked just fine. I will say their recommendation to “dry off” the lil’ smokies to help them stick to the bacon better. I didn’t do that at first and quickly realized it was necessary.

We also made Zacks family dip.

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(Disregard the weird yellowishness in the dip, that’s maple glaze I spilled on the dip. Didn’t even realize I did it until I was looking at the picture on my computer. Whoops!) Like the deviled eggs, it’s not a precise recipe, it’s kind of like our spaghetti sauce, you have the ingredients and the rough amounts but really you just have to keep adding and tasting until it’s the right consistency. I’m not even going to attempt to give you a recipe because well, it’s private, but if you want to try it, I can tell you it has 2 packages of cream cheese, milk, onion powder and¬†Worcestershire¬†sauce. The only amounts I know are the cream cheese. Maybe one day I’ll make it and Zack can tell me how he does it. Until them, I am happily the taste tester and nothing more ūüôā

We also had some yummy Ledo’s Pizza, meatballs, and queso dip. Everything was delicious, but nothing was as delicious as Beyonce’s Super Bowl performance… oh, and the Ravens winning. And John Harbaugh when he smiles. Those are all delicious things too.

Many thanks to my dear friend Ashley and her husband for inviting us over! It was a great way to spend the evening!

Ravens Egg Recipe

1 doz large hard-boiled eggs
3 heaping tbsp of mayonnaise (although my mom is adamant about Miracle Whip!)
1 tbsp mustard (yellow or dijon)
2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1/2 tsp Texas Pete Hot Sauce
Paprika for sprinkling

Cut the hard boiled eggs in half and gently remove the yolks.
Mix the yolks and the remaining ingredients except the paprika, in a food processor.
Pulse for about 10 seconds, taste, adjust.

How’s that for a recipe? What’s worse is that I hate deviled eggs so I always have to make sure someone that likes deviled eggs is around so they can taste them and tell me what they need more of. In this instance, and in most, it’s my husband, the deviled egg lover. The dying of the eggs part is a little more specific.

By specific, I mean beyond simple. Fill a bowl that will fit all your hard boiled egg whites, with ice cold water (but don’t add the egg whites yet). Then add dye until it’s the color you want – for me it was about 3-4 drops of “violet” which was actually blue, and 3 drops of red. Then you want to place your already cut (with the yolks removed) egg whites into the water, put it in the fridge for 2 hours, and you’re done! As with most dying processes, the more dark you want it, the longer you leave it in the dye. For me that was 2 hours.

I used a piping bag (aka ziploc) to get the yolk mixture into the egg whites. It’s a lot cleaner and prettier than attempting to spoon the mixture in. One the mixture is in, gently sprinkle with paprika.

Also, because they’re purple, with yellow centers, I was calling them Ravens Eyes. Although sprinkling them with paprika made that a little weird. haha.

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A Raven’s Super Bowl Party!

Hey folks!

Ok so there’s this thing coming up for Baltimore that people will NOT stop talking about… maybe you’ve heard of it?

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I think we can all agree we at least have the hotter of the two brothers. I’m not bias at all, I swear (but for the record, our Governor is hotter too).

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I’m not a huge Ravens fan (Go Skins!) but given the choice of Harbaugh brothers (or Governors), I’m going with the local ones. I mean, I only know 2 people even affiliated with the city of San Francisco and I have Raven’s fan friends oozing out of my Facebook feed. I’m also employed by the City of Baltimore, so it only makes sense for me to root for this great city.

So, I can’t really offer any insight on the game, but what I can do, is offer some insight on what to make FOR the game! I love a party and I happen to be going to a couple (one that the I’m hosting on behalf of the floor I work on, and another at my friends house that is mostly just going to be a small group eating and yelling at the TV). I can’t wait! Eating is my favorite part of watching football. That and clutch field goals.

So let’s get to Baltimore Party Food! There are a few different ways you can go.

First there’s food from the home city, which would consist of a few of the following things –

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1 – Rhebs Truffles 2 – Berger Cookies 3 – Utz Potato Chips
4 – Smith Island Cake 5 – Natty Boh and Blue Crabs 6 – Fishers Popcorn
7 – Matthews Pizza 8 – Crab Dip 9 – Dangerously Delicious Baltimore Bomb Pie

I realize most of those aren’t thing you make, but a lot of them are things you eat while watching football, so I think it counts. And if you’re ever in Baltimore City, please don’t leave without trying a Cheese Pizza from Matthews Pizza. It’s the most amazing thing you’ll ever put in your mouth. Or certainly one of them.

Now, for Party Numero Dos, you can go with “foods that are purple”. That’s the theme that I’m going with!

It’s harder than you’d think to find purple foods. (Foods that are black are even harder to find! However, I do see some Oreos in my future! But back to purple foods. When I googled I found this…

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I’ll just throw it out there that I’ve never heard of “Purple Kohlrabi”, I don’t think I’ve ever seen purple carrots, peppers or asparagus, and I don’t think raisins or figs, are purple. That being said, I think I came up with some pretty good ideas that revolve around purple foods, and foods that I can make purple with the glory of food coloring!

So here are some options of things I could make (and for the record, I’ll definitely be making one or two of these):

blue cheese purple potatoes

Purple Potatoes with Sour Cream

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Purple Deviled Eggs (you make them purple by soaking them in Ravenswood Merlot, or Beet juice, which I hear makes them tangy)

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“Purple” cabbage sweet and sour coleslaw

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Purple Potato Chips (with crab dip perhaps?)

Not too bad for a little list of ideas! And of course, we can’t forget about dessert! Lots of options there (thanks food coloring!)

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And, in case you were wondering how to make some purple beer, here ya go… Courtesy of Baltimore’s own, McCormick!

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Veggie (with chicken) Enchiladas

So this is the New Year, and I don’t feel annnyyyy different… the clanking of crystal, explosions off in the distance…

Anyone? You all know that song, right?

Love me some Ben Gibbard! He likes baseball AND he can sing? I am THERE!

Ok anyway, back to the post. This is the new year. and in my household, we’re trying like 60% of the US to eat healthier! At least healthier than we did last year. Shouldn’t be too hard, right? Not to mention, I got a bad ass food processor for Christmas that holds more than 2 cups of processessiness. Yeah. That’s a word bitches. But back to my food processor. I love it. I love it so much.

I know, you’re thinking – wasn’t this a post about Enchiladas? Yeah. It was. It IS.¬†Sorry about that. So, here they are…

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Pretty delicious looking, ey? And healthy? You don’t say? I know, you aren’t seeing any veggies but I swear, they’re in there! Here’s how it works:

Ingredients for the Enchiladas

1 package of 10″ whole wheat tortillas (the smaller kind are fine too. Smaller the tortillas, the more enchiladas you’ll make)
1-1.5 lb of chicken breasts
1.5 cups of 2% shredded cheddar cheese (or mexican shredded – we used mexican but I know it’s hard to find sometimes)
3 carrots
2 stalks of celery
1 large onion
1/2 package of low sodium taco seasoning (if you make your own like us, you need about 2 tablespoons)
1 small jar of salsa (or 1.5 cups of salsa) – if you’re really into it, you can make your own salsa in the food processor like we do!

Ingredients for the Sauce

1 cup chicken broth
1 cup FF sour cream
2 cups 2% shredded cheddar cheese
1/2 package of taco seasoning

Directions

– First you want to pre-heat the oven to 375.
– Place your salsa into a 9×9 pan and then lay the chicken on top then sprinkle taco seasoning onto chicken.
– Cook the chicken for about 20 minutes

In the meantime, shred up the carrots (peeled), celery and onion in the food processor

– When the chicken is done, take it out, shred it up with 2 forks and mix in the mixture from the food processor
– Cook for another 10-15 minutes

While the second round is in the oven, you want to put the sauce together. It’s as simple as throwing all the ingredients into a saucepan on medium heat and stirring until creamy. Never let it come to a boil and once its consistent, put it on low until the time is up on the chicken.

Next comes assembling the enchiladas. I like to lay out the tortillas on a piece of aluminum foil. Use a slotted spoon and scoop about 1 cup of mixture into the tortilla and add around a third of a cup of shredded cheese (eyeball it, then roll up and place in a glass dish (I use a 9×11) with the “open” side on the bottom. My mixture made 4 enchiladas but if you used the small tortillas I could easily see it making closer to 6 or 7.

Then pour the sauce onto the enchiladas in the pan and put them back in the oven at 375 for 20 minutes. This is a good time to cook your side dishes. I was going to make rice but in the spirit of healthy eating I made some FF refried beans and corn.

The final result were very flavorful enchiladas that were juicy, cheesy and relatively healthy. Certainly healthier than your standard enchiladas!

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