Super Bowl Snack Time

While I enjoy watching the Super Bowl, I think I look forward to the food that accompanies the game even more.

Super_Bowl_50_logo

I’m not sure why I insist on calling the food eaten during the game as “Tailgate” foods since they’re eaten in the comfort of my house, not in a parking lot or under a pop up tent outside a stadium, but in any case, I’ve found some new tailgate recipes to make the Super Bowl even more enjoyable.

 

Individual Mini Seven Layer Dip

Individual Mini Seven Layer Dip by The Girl Who Ate Everything

Jalapeno Poppers

Grilled Bacon Wrapped Jalapeno Poppers by Mad in Crafts

Loaded Baked Potato Dip

Loaded Baked Potato Dip by Closet Cooking

Quesadillas

Mexican Quesadillas by Simple Recipes

Dill Pickle Bites

Dill Pickle Bites by The Kitchen is My Playground

Jalapeno Popper Fillo Cups

Jalapeno Popper Fillo Cups by Bakery Our Day

Spicy Chicken Tortilla Roll Ups

Spicy Chicken Tortilla Roll Ups by Homemade By Holman

Parmesan Tortilla Strips

Parmesan Tortilla Strips by One Perfect Bite

I’ve made my shopping list. It’s time to prepare some Super Bowl snacks.

 

 

 

Happy Birthday, Florida!

Key Lime Pie should be made with key limes, not the larger Persian limes.
Key Lime Pie should be made with key limes, not the larger Persian limes.

On the 168th anniversary of Florida’s statehood (March 3rd, 1845) I thought we should celebrate! What better way than to bake a Key Lime Pie.

I know there is quite a debate as to whether Key Lime Pie is topped with meringue. In our family, the answer is definitely, “NO!” However, that’s a personal preference, and if you believe meringue is required, then by all means, add it.

 

Ingredients:

2/3 cups key lime juice (juice of about a dozen key limes)

1 Tablespoon lime zest

1 can Bordon’s Sweetened Condensed milk (8 ounces)

4 egg yolks

1 graham cracker pie crust (9″)

Directions:

  • Separate the 4 egg yolks from the whites.
  • Place egg yolks and lime zest in a small bowl and beat for 5 minutes with electric mixer. Mixture will become foamy and thicker.
  • Add condensed milk to yolk mixture and beat another 5 minutes.
  • Add lime juice and blend slowly until juice is mixed thoroughly.
  • Pour mixture into pie crust and place in the oven at 350°.
  • Cook for 7 – 9 minutes or until the filling is set. (about 5-6 minutes for mini-pie crusts)
  • Cool at room temperature and then place in refrigerator or freezer until ready to serve.
Happy Birthday, Florida.
Happy Birthday, Florida.

Soup’s On

Baked potato soup - one of the best things about cold weather!
Baked potato soup – one of the best things about cold weather!

After the wonderful, warm weather of the past couple of weeks, I’m not looking forward to the cold temperatures predicted for the weekend. It’s March…not the time for freezing temperatures.

The best way to overcome the disappointment of the reemergence of winter…fix baked potato soup…a favorite meal, but one we only eat when the weather’s cool.

Baked Potato Soup

Ingredients:

4 potatoes, baked and cut into bite sized pieces

1/4 cup butter

2/3 cup flour

7 cups milk (whole milk is best)

8 sliced of bacon, fried and drained (reserve half)

12 ounces shredded cheddar cheese (reserve half)

8 ounces sour cream

3/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon pepper

4 green onions, chopped (reserve half)

Bake potatoes at 350° for one hour. Cut in bite-sized pieces after cooled.

Fry, drain, and crumble bacon.

In large dutch oven, melt butter and then add flour, stirring until smooth.

Gradually add milk stirring constantly until thick. Add potatoes and onions. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Reduce heat. Simmer 10 minutes. Add remaining ingredients.

Top with remaining bacon, cheese, and onions.

While I know we’ll enjoy every last spoonful of the soup, I hope this is the last time we make it until the fall!

 

Super Bowl Snacks

It doesn’t have to be Super Bowl Sunday for us to enjoy snacks while watching football, but since this Sunday is the Super Bowl it’s a great excuse to skip dinner and just watch the game and eat snacks. Every magazine, newspaper, and morning show has some foodie providing recipes for your Super Bowl party. The only problem with most of these recipes – too time consuming – so I thought I’d put in my two cents worth. I’ve included three of our favorite simple, game day snacks.

Cocktail Meatballs

1 bag of frozen meatballs (small)

1 jar chili sauce – 12 oz.

grape jelly – 12 oz.

Add chili sauce and an equal amount of grape jelly to a sauce pan or crock pot and heat at low/medium temperature to melt jelly. Do not boil.

Heat meatballs in the microwave according to package directions.

Add meatballs to the chili/jelly mixture and continue cooking over low heat. (I prefer to keep them in the crock pot for a couple of hours so the meatballs can absorb the sauce.)

This recipe takes about 15 minutes to prepare and is a major improvement over the original recipe which called for 11 ingredients, mixing hamburger to make homemade meatballs that had to be fried before adding to the sauce. I can’t imagine why anyone would go to that much trouble when the result is so similar.

Cream Cheese Salsa Dip

1 8oz. package of soft cream cheese (reduced fat or light works fine)

Pace Picante sauce

Tostitos or Fritos

Set out cream cheese for about an hour to soften. Mix it with picante until smooth. You really can’t go wrong on this one. Serve with tortilla chips of Fritos.

Use as much picante as desired, and if the cream cheese isn’t soft enough- oh, well, chunky dip tastes great too!

Potato Skins

baking potatoes (one person)

bacon (one slice per two potatoes)

shredded cheese

sour cream

green onions

Bake potatoes and then when cooled cut the potatoes in half and scoop out the potato (I usually save the scooped out portion for use later.)

Fry or microwave bacon and crumble when cooled. (Even better if you cook extra at breakfast.)

When ready to serve, heat oven to 350, cut potato skins to desired size (usually four pieces per potato), sprinkle with bacon and cheese, salt, and pepper and bake for about 10 minutes.

While potatoes are baking cut onions and serve potato skins with sour cream and onions.

This is the one recipe that takes a little planning and effort, but if you want to really go all out, make potato skins. If you plan ahead, you can save time by baking the potatoes earlier in the week for dinner (mash the scooped out potato with butter and sour cream or cream cheese).

Of course, if you must have something healthy, make sure you include crudite’.

If you decide to make something requiring more time and effort, good for you; but I’ll be taking the easy route!

Burrito Bowls – My new favorite lunch!

Taking some tips from The 4-Hour Body, I decided to concentrate on eating more filling lunches to avoid snacking later in the day. The author, Timothy Ferriss, recommends eating a few foods over and over instead of eating a wide variety of foods. He suggests that concentrating on a few foods makes maintaining a diet more manageable and we don’t really need variety anyhow. While I don’t agree completely, I do agree that simplicity helps me when preparing meals. That’s why I’ve relied on frozen meals or sandwiches for lunch, but I really do not enjoy sandwiches and who needs all that bread anyway. And why am I eating frozen meals when I’m at home? Couldn’t I just quickly whip something up?

Well, last week I found the answer to the simple lunch that I love to repeat. At my request, John cooked a couple of extra chicken breasts on the grill when he was preparing dinner last Sunday. Then on Monday I cooked some rice (Uncle Ben’s 90 second microwave since I didn’t plan ahead). I heated black beans, corn, 1/2 chicken breast, and mixed them with the rice. I added a little shredded cheese and salsa and viola! I created a delicious lunch. Best of all, I had plenty of leftovers to prepare the same meal Monday through Thursday.

I know Ferriss would not be happy with all of my food choices in this recipe. Yes, he loves beans and chicken, but rice is a definite no on his plan, and I’m not sure he’d approve of corn. However, this is my body – not his – so I get to modify any way I want. So here’s recipe for Dee’s Burrito Bowl.

Ingredients:

1/2 cup cooked rice

1/2 cup shoepeg corn

1/2 cup black beans

1/2 chicken breast

2 Tablespoons shredded cheddar cheese

3 Tablespoons salsa

Measure rice, corn, beans, and chicken and place in a bowl. Heat in the microwave approximately 90 seconds or until warm. Sprinkle with cheese and salsa. Calories: 440 (I know that may seem like too many calories for lunch, but this is filling; and you won’t be tempted to snack later in the day.)

Substituting red beans for black beans or doubling the beans in place of corn may be good changes. I know what I’ll be eating this week for lunch – more burrito bowls!

Black Bean and Corn Salsa

This week we celebrate the retirement of a co-worker. To recognize this event, a reception has been planned and we’ve all signed up to provide food and drinks. My favorite easy to prepare contribution to these types of events is black bean and corn salsa, served with tortilla chips. Preparation takes only about 15 minutes, but it tastes best if refrigerated for at least eight hours so making the day ahead is perfect.

Ingredients:

1  (15-oz.) can black beans, rinsed and drained $
1  (11-oz.) can shoepeg corn, drained $
1  small green bell pepper, chopped $
2  plum tomatoes, seeded and chopped $
4  green onions, chopped $
1/4 cup  Italian vinaigrette dressing
1 tablespoon  fresh lime juice
2 teaspoons  chopped fresh cilantro
1/2 teaspoon  garlic salt
1/2 teaspoon  seasoned pepper
1/2 teaspoon  chili powder
1/2 teaspoon  hot sauce
Assorted tortilla chips

Preparation:

Stir together black beans and next 11 ingredients in a medium bowl; cover and chill 1 to 24 hours. Serve with tortilla chips.

Another great recipe from Southern Living, December 2008.

Taco Soup

Easy to make, taco soup really hits the spot on a cool, damp day like today. A friend introduced me to this soup and a similar recipe a couple of years ago when she made it for my birthday. It’s been a favorite ever since. Looking forward to dinner tonight!

Ingredients:
1 lb ground beef
1 c coarsely chopped onion
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 (16 oz) cans light red kidney beans, rinsed and drained                                                                                                                                                                                                                 1 (16oz) can black bean, rinsed and drained
1 (15 oz) can petite diced tomatoes and jalapenos, undrained
1 (14.5 oz) can diced tomatoes and mild green chilies, undrained
2 c frozen yellow and white whole kernel corn
1 (1 oz) envelope taco seasoning mix
¼ tsp salt
¼ tsp pepper
2 Tbsp chopped fresh cilantro
Toppings: sour cream, chopped fresh cilantro, cheddar cheese, Fritos

Brown ground beef, chopped onion, and garlic in a large pot over
medium-high heat, stirring often, 10 to 12 minutes or until meat
crumbles and is no longer pink and onion is softened; drain.

Stir in beans, next 8 ingredients, and 4 cups of water (one can of beef broth can be substituted for equal amount of water if desired). Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Cover, reduce heat to low, and simmer 30 minutes or until thoroughly heated. Stir in cilantro just before serving. Serve soup with desired toppings.
Serves ten. (Makes great leftovers and freezes well.)

I usually brown the ground beef and then place the remaining ingredients in a crock pot set on low. Soup’s ready in four hours or after work.