28 Delicious Thanksgiving (and Thanksgiving Leftovers) Recipes for 2016

Thanksgiving 2016 2

It’s that time again; time for the annual Thanksgiving post. After almost 6 years of blogging, I have accumulated quite a few recipes that work in this category, so I have to cull some out so as to not end up with a post with 50 different additions. 😛

Let’s start with entrees. Because…turkey…ham. Yummy. 😀

This Orange Marmalade Brown Sugar Glazed Ham is my absolute favorite way to make a ham. The ham turns out so moist and tender with such a delicious sweet/salty flavor you’ll keep coming back for.Orange Marmalade Brown Sugar Ham-001This Sesame Soy Turkey Breast is fantastic if you’re a cook who’s willing to leave the traditional box a bit on Thanksgiving. This glaze can also be used on a whole turkey, a chicken, game hen, you name it.

Sesame Soy Turkey Breast

Sesame Soy Turkey Breast

I know that a lot of families like to serve a pasta dish as one of the main dishes so I’m including our favorite, this Cheesy Sausage And Meatball Pasta Bake. This makes a LOT, so it’s perfect for Thanksgiving, when a lot of people are there, with everyone getting as little bit of each dish.Cheesy Meatball And Sausage Pasta BakeLet’s move on to appetizers; those little bits you put out to keep everyone from storming the kitchen begging for food. 😛  One of my favorite easy dips (and when I say easy, I mean it) is my White Trash Dip. I know; such a classy name, lol. But it is great for appeasing the hungry mongrel hordes and quick to throw together, which is always a plus on Thanksgiving.
White Trash Dip
I have adored Boursin Cheese for years, but man, that stuff is expensive for the small amount you get. So I started making my own years ago. This is soooo good and always a hit. It’s creamy, great with veggies like celery sticks as well as crackers. If you have any left over, it also makes a great stuffing for chicken breasts.

Creamy Homemade Boursin Cheese Spread

Creamy Homemade Boursin Cheese Spread

Ahhhh, side dishes. What would Thanksgiving be without 50 side dishes to serve with the turkey and ham? One of my all time most popular posts here at From Cupcakes To Caviar is my Insanely Cheesy And Creamy Mac And Cheese. This makes a HUGE pan of mac and cheese, so it’s perfect for the holidays.Insanely Cheesy And Creamy Mac & CheeseYou can’t have turkey without mashed potatoes, right?
I was never a mashed potato fan until I made up these Ultimate Buttery Sour Cream And Onion Mashed Potatoes. I totally love these. They are creamy, buttery (boy, are they buttery) and with a subtle tang from the cream cheese.

Ultimate Buttery Sour Cream And Onion Mashed Potatoes

Ultimate Buttery Sour Cream And Onion Mashed Potatoes

If you want to go a little different, you can’t beat these Herb Roasted Potatoes And Root Vegetables. The potatoes and veggies get all crispy on the outside and all soft and tender inside. So, so good.

Herb Roasted Potatoes And Root Vegetables

Herb Roasted Potatoes And Root Vegetables

I was never a cold pasta salad sort of a person until I made up this Chilled Caprese Tortellini Salad a few years ago. It’s great during the holidays for people who may want something a little lighter (and with no meat in it, lol) but still full of flavor.Chilled Caprese Tortellini Salad
I have a major thing for Winter squashes. To me, they stand so far above the ubiquitous Summer squashes. I took one of my favorites here and stuffed it to come up with Squash Stuffed With Sausage, Pears And Cranberries. This is a fantastic addition to the holiday meal or a great light entree on it’s own.

Squash Stuffed With Sausage, Pears And Cranberries

Squash Stuffed With Sausage, Pears And Cranberries

You can’t have Thanksgiving dinner without cranberry sauce, right? While I admit to a secret love for the kind that slithers out of the can with a loud plop, I also love homemade cranberry sauce and make a large batch every year. My Spiced Spiked Cranberry Sauce is a perfect foil for all the rich dishes you’ll be serving. The brandy is completely optional so don’t let that turn you away from it. Spiced Spiked Cranberry Sauce

Now we come to the breads. I’m not normally a big one for breads, but hot and fresh on the holidays? I tend to go for them more at that time. And these Angel Biscuits have become a family favorite. Since they have baking powder in them as well as yeast, they are fairly foolproof, which is great for the less experienced cooks out there.

Angel Biscuits

Angel Biscuits

The rolls I have been making for years are these Oatmeal Yeast Rolls. They are so fluffy and soft; perfect hot spread with butter or later as a mini turkey sandwich (Yes, I know this is a bad photo. The post is an old one, when my photography skills were sub-par, to say the least. The rolls however, are amazingly good)

Oatmeal Rolls

Oatmeal Rolls

I love to make a few loaves of bread for Thanksgiving as well as rolls. They are so good with dinner and make fantastic sandwiches the next day. I particularly love to make my Loaded Baked Potato Bread, The flavors in it go wonderfully with a turkey sandwich!

Loaded Baked Potato Bread

Loaded Baked Potato Bread

Here in the south, a lot of people like to make cornbread to go with dinner, even on the holidays. My Sweet Cream And Honey Cornbread is a favorite. It’s fluffy, not at all dry like so many cornbreads can be, with just a touch of sweetness.

Sweet Cream And Honey Cornbread

Sweet Cream And Honey Cornbread

Then, of course, we have the part of dinner that everyone looks forward to; dessert! And man, you know I have some desserts to share with you! I have to start with the classics, of course, so here is my favorite- my Decadent Extra Creamy Pumpkin Pie. This one is posted with a really good cornmeal crust, but you can use your favorite crust. Just make sure it’s a deep dish one. Decadent Extra Creamy Pumpkin Pie In A Cornmeal Crust
That pumpkin pie tends to be my husbands favorite. Mine however will always be Pecan Pie. I love it slightly warmed with heavy cream poured over it. So bad for me, but so delicious!Deep Dish Pecan Pie

The last few years, my favorite pecan pie has had to vie with this Cranberry Apple Cake. I can’t say enough good things about this cake. It’s absolutely delicious and I can’t imagine the Thanksgiving meal without it now. It’s sweet, tangy, crispy, just a wonderful dessert that I look forward to all year.

Cranberry Apple Cake

Cranberry Apple Cake

If you want a classic (not to mention, heavenly chocolate goodness 😀 ) you’ll want to make this wonderful Old Fashioned Chocolate Cake With Chocolate Icing This is a favorite with pretty much all age groups, and even those people who say Thanksgiving should be all about the pies. I’m not even normally a cake person and I love it!

Old Fashioned Chocolate Cake With Chocolate Icing

Old Fashioned Chocolate Cake With Chocolate Icing

If you want to do a different apple dessert, my Worlds Best Apple Spice Cake With Creamy Vanilla Butter Sauce would be a great choice. It’s easy to throw together the day before you need it and then just warm up the sauce when ready to cut and serve. Again, I’m not huge on cakes, which is why if you see me posting one, you know it MUST be good.

Worlds Best Apple Spice Cake With Creamy Vanilla Butter Sauce

Worlds Best Apple Spice Cake With Creamy Vanilla Butter Sauce

Or maybe you prefer a classic apple dessert? I find myself going for this Old Fashioned Apple Crisp all year round, but it’s a delicious choice on Thanksgiving!Old Fashioned Apple Crisp 2

I have a couple of desserts for you that are a bit more elegant, plus not as heavy. The first is one I love; my Elegant And Easy Lemon Almond Cake. This cake is light and filled with the flavor of almond and lemon; perfect for the family members who want a little something for dessert, but don’t want the heavier sweets.

Elegant & Easy Lemon Almond Cake

Elegant & Easy Lemon Almond Cake

The other one is one of my more recent creations- these Skillet Pears With Autumn Spiced Caramel Sauce. These are wonderful if you have a smaller gathering. The pears end up tender and juicy and the caramel sauce is fantastic.Skillet Pears With An Autumn Spiced Caramel Sauce 9

So, what to do with leftovers once Thanksgiving is over? When you tire of just making a plate of leftovers, I have some things you can do with some of them. If the title says chicken, obviously you can sub in that leftover turkey staring you in the face.

We love Mexican food in my house. Yes, I know that much of what we all call Mexican food has been totally Americanized, but it’s still delicious, so who cares? One of my family’s favorites are these Cheesy Chicken (Turkey) And Chorizo Enchiladas. They have the perfect mix of creamy, spicy and cheesy. I make them all year round, but they are a perfect way to use up leftovers.Cheesy Chicken And Chorizo Enchiladas 2

Everyone makes soup after Thanksgiving. But I have one here that doesn’t need to have you simmering stock for hours on end. I can eat a boatload of my Quick And Easy Turkey, Bacon And Cheese Chowder. This is comfort food at its best and it doesn’t have to cook for hours.Quick & Easy Turkey, Bacon & Cheese Chowder

Along the Mexican lines again, I almost always make a pan of White Chicken (Turkey) Enchiladas in the week after Thanksgiving. These are soooo darn good and everyone scarfs them down.

Creamy, Cheesy White Chicken Enchiladas

Creamy, Cheesy White Chicken Enchiladas

You may still have some turkey left even after those (I know I will; I always buy too much!) so my Cheaters Easy Chicken (Turkey) And Dumplings never fails me. It’s warming, comforting and filling and tastes great!

Cheaters Easy, Creamy Chicken & Dumplings

Cheaters Easy, Creamy Chicken & Dumplings

If you have leftover cranberry sauce (and you know you will), make a loaf of my Pumpkin Cranberry Bread. It’s an easy way to use up some of those leftovers and it makes a yummy breakfast or light snack.Easy Pumpkin Cranberry Breadthanksgiving

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Worlds Best Italian Turkey Meatballs

 

Worlds Best Italian Turkey Meatballs

Worlds Best Italian Turkey Meatballs

I like meatballs. My family likes meatballs. I don’t however, make meatballs very often because it’s one of those foods I have a weird mental block with, thinking they are far harder than they really are. When I DO make them, I realize that I was wrong, but in between times, it’s like, “Ooo, I want meatballs. Wait… no, I don’t. They’re a pain in the tushie.”

But I was in the grocery store the other day and they yet again had ground turkey in the reduced section. They ALWAYS have ground turkey there. Someone in the ordering department needs to get with the program and stop buying so much ground turkey, then they could possibly sell it at normal price. But I digress. They had some, so I bought some on a whim. I do many things on whims. I like to think it makes me interesting. It probably really just makes me extremely confusing and annoying, but humor me. I normally don’t even use ground turkey, finding it too dry and flavorless, but man, did I manage to shake that stereotype with these meatballs!

These turned out really, really good. Like worlds best meatball type of good. You of course, after trying them, might not agree, but hey, I’m the one naming them, so worlds best it is. 😀 These are tender and moist with a LOT of flavor and a mild bite of spicy red pepper to them. They aren’t difficult at all. These delicious bites are perfect with pasta, which is what I used them for this time, but I can easily imagine them in a small loaf of crusty bread, covered in red sauce and a ton of melted cheese.

You know the drill… 🙂

Worlds Best Italian Turkey Meatballs

Worlds Best Italian Turkey Meatballs

  • 1 lb ground turkey
  • 1 lb ground Italian sausage
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 cup fine bread crumbs
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese (this is one of those times it’s fine to use the inexpensive powdery stuff. It helps bind the meatballs)
  • 1/4 cup minced fresh basil
  • 1/2 cup minced onion
  • 2 to 4 tablespoons minced garlic, depending on your love for garlic. I used a lot.
  • 1 teaspoon dry oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon dry thyme
  • 2 tablespoons heavy cream
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil for the pan (more for each batch)
  1. In a large bowl, combine all ingredients up through the salt.
  2. Use your hands to mix well.
  3. Shape the meat mixture into 30 meatballs, about 1 inch in diameter. Obviously, if you want smaller, go smaller, or bigger, same thing.
  4. Pour the olive oil into a large deep pan. Heat for about a minute, until the oil is getting shimmery, then places meatballs in a single layer. Cook over medium heat until nicely browned, about 3 minutes, then flip them and brown the other side. If you’re planning to add them to pasta sauce and cook further, stop there so as to not end up with overcooked, tough meatballs. Otherwise, cook until no longer pink inside (an internal temp of 165)
  5. Clean the pan out between batches and use a bit more oil each time or you end up with burned bits on the bottom that cling to the meatballs.
  6. Scoop them out with a slotted spoon, letting the excess grease drain and serve with pasta, on sandwiches, as an appetizer, plain… whatever trips your trigger.
Worlds Best Italian Turkey Meatballs 2

Worlds Best Italian Turkey Meatballs 2

White Trash Dip (Recipe Re-Do)

White Trash Dip

White Trash Dip

Lovely name, ehh? But since when did I ever try to convince you that I was classy, prim and proper? You love me like I am, right? Low class, strange, and always doing my best (such as that may be) to give you a giggle.

The first time I made this dip was not long after I started the blog. Lately, I’ve been getting quite a few people coming to it and while that makes me happy, it has, yet again, one of those photos that makes me cringe, cry copious tears of embarrassment, and

want to gouge my eyeballs out so that I don’t have to see it again. Yes, it’s that bad. I love the post I made to go with it because it’s one of my funnier ones (has cuss words; you’re forewarned) but I know that the photo makes baby kitten throw themselves off cliffs. So, it was time to remake this one. Partly because I’ve changed it a little over the years and partly, well, that photo *cries more*

This is one of the worlds easiest dips to make. Why is it called white trash, you ask? Because it’s fairly cheap to make and uses canned chili 😀 and because this is so not something you’d serve at a classy party with champagne and caviar. This is more beer, chips and family and friends you love gathered together. Perfect for a game or for family movie night, for a Christmas buffet, what have you.

This is creamy, meaty, a little bit spicy (easy to adjust), cheesy, great for digging into when you have the munchies.

You know the drill…. 🙂

White Trash Dip

  • 1 15 ounce can of your favorite chili
  • 2 8 ounce packages cream cheese, softened
  • 2 cups sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
  • 2 teaspoons finely minced jalapeno (omit if you use the typically spicy chorizo, unless you really like the bite) plus extra for garnish
  • 1 lb chorizo sausage, cooked and crumbled (you can also use bacon, which is how I originally posted it)
  • 4 green onions, plus extra for garnish
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease a 2 quart serving dish (I used  a souffle dish). Combine all the ingredients in a large bowl, then scoop into the serving dish. Smooth top.
  2. Bake at 350 until browned on top and bubbly, about 15 to 20 minutes. Garnish with green onions and jalapeno. Serve hot.
White Trash Dip

White Trash Dip

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Creamy Homemade Boursin Cheese Spread

Creamy Homemade Boursin Cheese Spread

Creamy Homemade Boursin Cheese Spread



I am a Thanksgiving appetizer junkie.  By the time I finish cooking the actual meal, I am so filled up on appetizers that I have no interest in dinner. Of course, the taste testing I just HAVE to do *innocent smile* as I cook doesn’t help either. Mind you, none of this stops me from loading up a full plate just in case. I then eat three bites, cover the plate and become a total turkey pig a few hours later.

But nothing matches appetizers for me. I love small bites, love being able to pick and choose from nibbles of fun finger foods. One thing I particularly love is cheese. Combine that with what all of you know is one of my downfalls, something creamy, and I become a total glutton. Many years ago, I saw a recipe somewhere or another for Boursin cheese and just had to give it a try. The rest is history. Now I make it each Thanksgiving and Christmas. The original recipe has changed much over the years and I don’t even make it as per the recipe anymore.

This cheese is so darn good! If you love creamy spreads, you’ll love it. It goes great on crackers, veggies, and one way I love to use it to stuff chicken or pork chops with it. I’m a total peasant myself; this cheese spread and some Ritz crackers and I’m in heaven. Add in a glass of wine and yeah, baby, I’m good! 😀

This goes together so quickly you’ll think you missed a step. The most time consuming part; all of three minutes or so, is finely chopping the green onions and the garlic. Such a workout. :-p Then just put it into a pretty serving bowl, set out crackers and others dippers and watch your family and guests go crazy for it. You’re welcome. 😀

You know the drill….. <3

 Creamy Homemade Boursin Cheese Spread

  • 2 8 ounce packages cream cheese, room temp
  • 1/2 cup (one stick) unsalted butter, room temp
  • 1/4 cup good quality Parmesan Cheese (not the grated stuff you sprinkle on spaghetti)
  • 3 tablespoons finely minced green onion (about 1.5 green onions should do it)
  • 2 to 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon dill weed
  • 1 teaspoon Fine Herbes
  • 1/2 teaspoon dry basil
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt (do NOT use more without taste testing. This is a simple mixture and easy to over salt)
  1.  In a medium bowl, combine the butter and cream cheese. Beat well on medium speed until creamy and fluffy. Scrape bowl once, and beat for another minute or so.
  2. Add in all the rest of the ingredients. Beat well to combine. Give it a small taste test for salt and seasoning. Keep in mind the saltiness of any dippers you may use before adding more salt to the cheese.
  3. Spoon into a serving bowl; smooth top. Serve immediately or refrigerate until about half an hour before serving time.

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Creamy Homemade Boursin Cheese Spread

Creamy Homemade Boursin Cheese Spread

 

Overstuffed Pizza Potato Skins

Overstuffed Pizza Potato Skins

Overstuffed Pizza Potato Skins



 

Ok, I mentioned these like a week ago on my facebook page. Oops. I kinda forgot to post them or even make them until tonight. Can I blame old age, senility, six kids and the damage they have done to my brain cells? My husband and his snoring? Global warming? I got spit on by a camel at the fair once? Some psychological issue that hasn’t yet been discovered and named?
Ok… sorry. I’m done now. But all of the above are still perfectly valid excuses. Just sayin’.

Back in the day, I think I’ve mentioned before, I worked at T.J.Applebees (now just Applebees). One of the things they did then were ten cent wings and ten cent potato skins. Yes, grasshopper, I am so old that wings and potato skins used to go for a dime during happy hour. Excuse me while I go take my Geritol. They also did one dollar pitchers of margaritas and I have many very vague memories of sitting with the other waitresses and drinking a pitcher or six. Ahhh, good times, good times. I think.

Theirs were the typical skins; cheddar cheese, bacon bits, green onions. Yummy as can be, but c’mon, do you REALLY think I’m going to make them that way? I’m the woman that made these potato skins. After all this time, you all know I can’t be normal.

So, me being me, as opposed to me being say Sandra Bullock or Michelle Pfeiffer because God decided that I should look more like the love child of Phyllis Diller and Tiny Tim, I made them differently. I had been craving pizza recently and we couldn’t afford take out, so I used some ingredients I had here at home to make…well, the love child of potato skins and supreme pizza. My husband was like “I don’t know about this… I’m not much on potato skins”. He’s had four in the last 30 minutes. I am of course, gloating. Marital gloat…. it’s almost better than chocolate.

These have a few steps, but they’re quite easy to make, even for multi step. Each step is simple stuff like sauteing veggies or scooping out potatoes. I have faith that you can handle it. :-p I made this for 8 potatoes (16 skins), but it’s easily increased or decreased. If you end up with a little bit extra cheese and/or meat/veggie mixture, it makes a wonderful pizza omelet.

You know the drill… 🙂

Mrs. Cupcake… who is bloated from too much cheese.

Overloaded Pizza Potato Skins

  • 8 medium potatoes
  • olive oil
  • salt
  • 1 small onion, sliced in half, then thinly sliced into half rings
  • 1 small green pepper, chopped into bite sized pieces
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1 tablespoon squeeze basil (available in the produce section)
  • 1 5 ounce package mini pepperoni slices
  • 1 4 ounce package Italian Sausage crumbles (by the lunch meats)
  • 3 small Roma (plum) tomatoes, cut into bit sized pieces
  • 1 15 ounce can or jar of pizza sauce ; use your favorite.
  • 1/2 lb sharp cheddar cheese, shredded and mixed with
  • 1/2 lb Mozzarella cheese, shredded
  1. Preheat oven to 350. Rub each potato lightly with olive oil, sprinkle with salt. Pierce each one to prevent a lovely little steam explosion in the oven, then place on the middle rack of the oven. bake until a fork can easily pierce the center of the potatoes, about 40 minutes.
  2. Remove from the oven, cut each potato in half and let sit until cool enough to handle, about 30 minutes.
  3. Use a small spoon and carefully scoop out the insides of each potato half, being sure to leave a thin shell around the edge so the potato isn’t too fragile to handle. Reserve the scooped mashed potato for another use- This is a good recipe to use it for
  4. Turn the oven to 450, then smear the edge and inside of each potato half with a small amount of olive oil. Place back in the oven and let bake until the edges of the potatoes are getting crispy and lightly browned, about 10 to 15 minutes.
  5. Meanwhile, in a medium pan, pour 3 tablespoons olive oil. Add in the sliced onions, sliced green peppers and garlic. Saute over medium heat , stirring occasionally, until the veggies are soft and the onions are lightly browned. Add in the sausage, squeeze basil and the pepperoni; continue cooking until the meats are heated through. Add in the tomatoes and cook just enough to heat them; you don’t want them getting mushy. Set aside when heated.
  6. Remove the potatoes from the oven and turn oven back down to 350. Use a pastry brush to lightly brush the insides of each skin with pizza sauce, about a teaspoon or so in each.
  7. Sprinkle each one with a small amount of the mixed cheeses, then spoon some of the meat/veggie mixture into each one. Lay directly next to each other (they help support each other and it prevents them from toppling over in the oven) in a baking dish. Sprinkle the rest of the cheese over the tops of the skins.
  8. Bake at 350 degrees for about 15 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and bubbly. Serve hot, with the remaining pizza sauce warmed and served on the side as a dipping sauce.

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Mini Baked Turkey Bacon Club Sandwiches

Mini Baked Turkey Bacon Club Sandwiches

Mini Baked Turkey Bacon Club Sandwiches



I have yet another confession to make. I don’t like sports. Well, I DO watch maybe one or two Chicago Cubs games a year, but only home games. It’s a nostalgia thing for me. After one or two, watching them lose gets depressing and even nostalgia isn’t enough to stop the facepalm from happening. But even being from Chicago (if I ever call it “Chi-Town”, please smack me upside the head), they are the only team I like and watch. No Bears, no Sox, no whateverelsetheymayhave. And other teams and sports from far away lands like California or New York? Fuhgeddaboutit!

I DO however like this time of year for the snacks like these upscale potato skins . I tend to be a grazer when it comes to eating so foods like this bruschetta are also perfect for me. Sit me in front of the game with a book or my kindle hidden in my lap with some snacks, rouse me when it’s time for the fun commercials and I’m perfectly content to pretend to cheer for the home team… or whatever team it is we’re supposed to be cheering for.

This type of mini sandwich has been all over the web for the last few years. I have absolutely no idea at this point who started the trend, but I love them. They are usually a ham and cheese version with a simple mustard, butter and poppy seed sauce poured over them. I wanted to pump up the flavor some though. And what is one way to pump up flavor? ADD BACON!!!  Bacon is my reason for living. I know many of you will agree.

I made this into a club version of that sandwich. Turkey, ham, cheese and bacon. BUT…yes, there is a but… then I added a lovely garlic/Parmesan sauce over the top. I am pretty sure that one of these sandwiches meets your daily caloric needs for about 3 weeks. But they are totally worth it. My husband ate about 6 of them. So now I don’t have to feed him for like 4.5 months, right?

These are delightfully messy and buttery- in other words, perfect guy and kid food as well as perfect game food. But you could probably go down a bit on the butter and still be fine.

You know the drill…. 🙂

Mrs. Cupcake, who is going to smell like garlic butter for a week.

Mini Baked Turkey Bacon Club Sandwiches

  • 16 dinner rolls (I used potato rolls- I’ve found them at Wal-mart, Aldis, Meijer, Kroger… most big chains)
  • 1 lb good quality bacon, cooked until just crisp
  • 1/2 lb thin sliced deli ham
  • 1/2 lb thin sliced deli turkey
  • 1 lb of your favorite sliced cheese (I used 1/2 lb each of Havarti and Muenster)
  • 1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, melted
  • 4 finely minced garlic cloves (or sub 2 teaspoons garlic powder)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons onion powder
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan (while I usually use fresh, the powdery jarred version is fine for these)
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease a 13×9 inch pan. Place the bottom half of the rolls in the pan. I squish 6 down each side then place 4 all snuggled up down the middle of the pan in between the two lines.
  2. Layer the rolls with the bacon, turkey, ham and cheese. Place the top half of the rolls on the sandwiches
  3. Add the garlic (or garlic powder) , Parmesan, onion powder and Worcestershire to the melted butter. Stir well to combine. Pour the butter mixture evenly over the tops  of the sandwiches, spreading it around if needed. The Parmesan makes this clump a little, so just spoon it around.
  4. Bake at 350 degrees for about 20 minutes, until the sandwiches are lightly browned on top and the cheese is bubbly. let cool for about 3 minutes, then slice in between the sandwiches and serve

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Roasted Garlic Hummus (and the first giveaway of 2015!)

Roasted Garlic Hummus(ENTRY WIDGET DOWN AT THE BOTTOM OF THE POST! SCROLL DOWN FOR IT!)



This is my last giveaway for 2014 as a Hamilton Beach Ambassador. I’ve had a blast promoting their products this past year! And obviously, I’ve enjoyed getting to own and use some wonderful kitchen appliances, as well as offering them to all of you to enjoy. Today, I’m reviewing and giving away a Hamilton Beach Stack and Snap™ 10 Cup Food Processor. So far, I’m loving this food processor. It took me a minute to get used to, because it has some differences from the typical one, including my old Hamilton beach processor, but once I figured it out (tip- don’t be like me. Do this weird thing called read the manual that comes with it 😛 ). With this new model, you have to snap the lid into place and you can’t start it unless you have. It also has a feature where you can’t use it with the chute open. You have to put what you want through the chute, then put the thingamajigger (I know… I use too many technical terms) back on. You also can’t, as with most types, pull the blade out when the container is off of the base. You have to have the base on and then snap out the blade. This comes in handy if you’re like me, with a habit of upending the container to empty it and having the blade come out and catch you in the hand. Yay for less 5 inch deep gashes on the hands! The theme the lovely people from Hamilton beach wanted us to follow with this appliance is making something for the holidays. I racked my brain and had thought of Christmas cookies… then 900 other thoughts, but I like waiting to do my posts as an ambassador until after every one else has done theirs (that way Hamilton Beach has people paying attention to them for more than just a couple of highly condensed weeks.), so Christmas ideas were out. So I decided to make a New Years Eve appetizer. Heaven knows that many people need to have some nibbles around to offset the amounts of booze they drink, lol. And I wanted to do something with a good amount of protein for the same reason. So where did I finally settle….? On a delicious Roasted Garlic Hummus. This stuff is sooooo good and this processor helped me create it so easily! if you are convinced you don’t like hummus, I am willing to bet that you haven’t tried it homemade. The flavor is infinitely better, infinitely fresher and this is one of the easiest appetizers (or dinners, if you’re like me at all) you can make. Make this for a party, set out some nice warm pita wedges of pita chips (I also love it with pretzel chips) and you have an immediate hit. This is one that goes fast because all people have to do is dip and eat. No mess, no fuss. I could eat hummus until it was coming out of my ears. It’s nutritious, but it’s so wonderfully creamy that you’d never know it. And you can vary the flavors in it so easily. Make this tonight for whatever get together you’re hosting or going to and then make more when you need a quick and easy game day snack. So when you run to the store today to pick up some more beer or wine, grab the following items too. You’ll love this hummus. Oh yeah… before you leave, make sure you enter to win one of these Hamilton Beach Stack and Snap™ 10 Cup Food Processor for yourself. I know you’ll love it and find a gazillion uses for it! The giveaway is at the  bottom of the page!

Roasted Garlic Hummus

  • 2 15 ounce cans chickpeas, well drained (also known as Garbanzo Beans)
  • 1 head roasted garlic, cloves taken out and lightly smashed (plus more for garnish. Whatever you don’t use can be stored in the fridge)
  • 2 tablespoons Tahini (Sesame seed paste)
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup warm water
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice (more if needed after you give this a taste test)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon salt (use the lower amount first, taste after processing, then add the extra 1/4 teaspoon if needed)

 

 

 

  1. Dump the chickpeas into the bowl of your food processor. Add all the other ingredients on top. DSCF4664

 

  •  Process until smooth, about 1 minute. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and process again. taste for salt and lemon; add more if needed and process for another 10 seconds or so.  Spoon into a serving bowl.DSCF46663. Add some extra roasted garlic on top for garnish.

 

 

            4.Serve with warm pita wedges, celery or carrot sticks, or pretzels.      

Hamilton Beach

Stack & Snap™ 10 Cup Food Processor-

 

Product Features
Parts & Accessories
Use and Care Guides

 

 

    • Easy stack & snap assembly

 

 

 

 

 

  • Unique, patent-pending design requires no difficult twisting & locking

 

  • Simple function guide shows you which blade to use & which button to press

 

 

  • Big Mouth® feed tube reduces pre-cutting

 

 

  • Sealed bowl prevents leaks

 

 

  • Powerful 450 watt motor

 

 

  • Reversible slice/shred disk

 

 

  • Chopping S-blade locks into bowl and stays put during pouring

 

 

  • Dishwasher safe blades, bowl, and lid

 

 

  • Cord storage

 

 

  • The easiest food processor assembly ever Gone are the days of complicated positioning and twisting the bowl and lid into place. With the Hamilton Beach® Stack & Snap™ Food Processor, the bowl is specially designed to fit directly on the base (with no twisting required) and the lid snaps securely to the bowl with simple locking clips for safe operation. No more guessing whether it’s put together correctly, just “stack” and “snap” the parts into place! The kitchen helper you’ll use for every meal Mix up a quick pancake batter. Chop onions without the tears. Puree a bowl of nutritious soup. Slice cucumbers evenly for a perfect salad. Chill, then shred or grate your favorite cheese for a variety of dishes. Large feed chute means less prep work Are you still pre-cutting all your ingredients? If you’re doing that, why bother with a food processor at all? The Hamilton Beach® Stack & Snap™ 10 Cup Food Processor accommodates both large and small ingredients, so you can spend less time pre-cutting your ingredients and more time enjoying them. Unique bowl features Many food processors come with a maximum liquid fill line, so if you are preparing soup you need to process multiple batches. The sealed bowl holds up to 10 cups of liquid, which reduces the need for multiple batches when processing soups or other liquids. Another great feature is the S-blade stays locked in the bowl when pouring, so you don’t need to pick the blade out of the processor or worry that it might fall out when you are pouring. A simple snap secures the lid on to the bowl, with no twisting and locking needed. Includes everything you need This powerful food processor comes with a 10 cup bowl, which is the ideal size for most of your home cooking needs. It also includes a reversible slice/shred disc and S-blade for chopping, mixing and pureeing. Cord storage in the back keeps things tidy when not in use. Easy to use Disc attachments are reversible and labeled, which takes the guesswork out of processing. The label should face up for the desired function. When using disc attachment, do not process foods past the MAX LEVEL indicator on the bowl. Many processing options Between the S-blade and the reversible slicing/shredding disc, you have many choices available. Use the S-blade for chopping nuts, meat, garlic, onions, peppers, celery, herbs, bread (for crumbs), and crackers. Also, use it to mince/puree vegetables and fruits, mix salad dressings, puree soups or sauces, and to grate cheese. Use the slicing disc (slicing side facing UP) to slice cucumbers, apples, mushrooms, carrots, potatoes, cabbage, tomatoes, pepperoni, peppers, radishes, firm cheeses. Use the shredding disc (shredding side facing UP) to shred cabbage, potatoes, carrots, and cheese.

 

 

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Hamilton Beach provided me with a  Hamilton Beach Stack & Snap™ 10 Cup Food Processor for review and giveaway, but my opinions are 100% my own.

Sticky Spicy Sweet Thai Wings

Sticky Spicy Sweet Thai Chicken Wings

Sticky Spicy Sweet Thai Chicken Wings

Yesterday, I was having a conversation with friends on facebook about how the American public (and a few other westernized cultures) has gotten fatter and fatter even though there is a far larger variety of good for you foods to choose from. We went back and forth over whether diet or lack of exercise was the larger culprit with my personal stance being right in the middle of both. We make crappy food choices, then do nothing to work it off. As a society we have come so far from our agricultural work 10 hours a day at manual labor roots that’s it’s frightening. most of us now get our exercise at home via a dvd or at the gym or maybe jogging and that’s assuming we even get up off of our computer chairs to do ANYTHING. And as I said to friends, I’m as guilty of that as anyone.

Case in point, chicken wings. I absolutely love them and would happily eat them several times a week with no problem. The problem lies in how I usually like them. I love the prepackaged bags of Hooters coating, frying the wings up all nice and crispy and then slathering them in the Hooters sauce. In my defense, I don’t have them often, maybe 2 or 3 times year, but to be totally honest, that probably stems more from the price of wings than any healthy living on my part. Like I said, I’m as guilty as anyone else. Last night, I had those same Hooters wings all planned for dinner. But after that conversation, I just couldn’t do it. I have been trying to eat better lately anyway (as I’ve said before, I actually don’t eat much of what I make for the blog… this is where having teenage boys and my husband having female coworkers who love sweets comes in handy hehe) and after my soapbox talk on facebook, couldn’t justify fried wings coated in flour and a buttery sauce.

So I played. I love spicy foods, I love sweet hot foods even more and I love Thai influenced foods too. So I dreamed up a sauce that had those flavors. I am rather pleased with how these turned out. The sauce is sticky, (and a good wing just HAS to be sticky. It’s the law!), sweet and with a nice punch of heat to it. If you’re spice averse, just lower the amount of jalapeno pepper.  This makes a lot of glaze. You can store the excess in the fridge to use as a dipping sauce for many different foods. 🙂

You know the drill… git to cookin’

Sticky Spicy Sweet Thai Wings

  • 1 4 lb bag frozen chicken wings, thawed
  • 8 ounces apricot preserves
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  • juice and zest from one small lime
  • juice and zest from one small orange
  • 2 tablespoons red curry paste
  • 1/3 cup Thai sweet chili sauce
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 3 tablespoons finely minced jalapeno
  1. Preheat oven to 400. Line a large baking sheet with non stick foil (you could also use regular foil but spray it with cooking spray… as much fat as wings render, they still stick to the pan).
  2. Place the wings in a single layer on the baking sheet.
  3. Bake at 400 degrees for 20 minutes, then drain off all of the rendered fat or your wings won’t crisp at all, they’ll just steam in their own fat.
  4. Continue baking at 400 until wings are cooked through. If they haven’t browned enough for you, turn your broiler on high and put the pan under the broiler until they are of desired brownness. Watch closely so they don’t burn.
  5. As the wings cook, make your sauce. In a medium non stick pot, combine all the sauce ingredients. Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring constantly so it doesn’t burn while the preserves melt. Once it is smooth, turn the heat to medium and continue boiling, stirring very frequently to prevent sticking. Turn the heat off about ten minutes before you take the wings out of the oven to let the sauce cool and thicken. it will look thin hot, but will thicken nicely as it cools.
  6. Put your cooked wings in a large heatproof bowl and pour the desired amount of sauce over them. Toss to coat. Garnish with sesame seeds and sliced green onions.

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Potato Skins With Pancetta, Brie And Fried Shallots

Potato Skins With Pancetta, Brie & Fried Shallots

Potato Skins With Pancetta, Brie & Fried Shallots



I remember back in the day when I waitressed. I’ve been lucky enough the last few years to be a stay at home mom because I have the most awesome husband ever, but I worked in all forms of the service industry for many many years. Back in the mid 80’s, during my first marriage, I worked at a restaurant called T.J. Applebees. Yep, that was how what we now know as Applebees started. This was in Houston and was one of their first restaurants.

This place was big on appetizers, beer and TV’s playing sports; one of the original sports bars/restaurants. Every Friday night they would have appetizer and drink specials to lure in the hungry masses. You could get ten cent wings (Gosh, I miss the days of ten cent wings lol. Now if you’re lucky, you can find 50 cent wing specials), quarter draft beers, 2 dollar pitchers of margaritas (more tip money spent on those than I care to recall hehe) and a plate of potato skins for a buck. Back then, potato skins weren’t as common. You could find them at places like T.J.’s and the like but no one really made them at home. Now though, they are a common game day snack.

I wanted to make them a bit more upscale though. I absolutely love the original way with cheddar cheese and bacon but I figured they could be made a bit more “knife and fork worthy” if that makes any sense. So instead of the normal toppings, we have some pan browned pancetta, creamy brie (mixed with a bit of Monterey Jack for tang) and some shallots that have been sliced thin, dredged in a touch of flour then fried in the drippings from the pancetta. Then each skin is sprinkled with some Fleur De Sel. Serve these with a bowl of sour cream and green onions and you have a snack worthy of eating with your pinky held out haughtily.

This is a multi step recipe but none of the steps is difficult. The most time consuming part is scooping out the potatoes. After that, it’s all prep.

You know the drill. Git to cookin’.

Potato Skins With Pancetta, Brie & Fried Shallots

  • 6 medium potatoes
  • 8 ounces cubed pancetta
  • 12 ounces good quality brie, room temp (preferably a triple creme brie)
  • 4 ounces freshly shredded monterey jack cheese, brought to room temp AFTER grating)
  • 5 large shallots, sliced thin and tossed in 1 tablespoon flour
  • Fleur De Sel or Sea Salt
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 2 green onions, thinly sliced
  1. Take each potato and wrap tightly in a piece of foil. Why? Because if you bake these, then bake them again later to melt the topping and crisp them, you end up with shriveled potatoes. Boiling them in foil gives you very pretty unwrinkled potatoes.
  2. Simmer the potatoes in water in a large pot for about 40 minutes or until a fork poked into the middle of the biggest one goes in easily.
  3. Carefully remove the foil and let potatoes cool completely on a wire rack.
  4. When cool, cut each potato in half lengthwise. Using a small spoon, carefully spoon/scrape out the center of each potato half, leaving about a quarter inch thick shell.Cover the scooped out potatoes and save to use for something else. You could toss it also but why waste perfectly god potatoes?
  5. Preheat oven to 400 degrees, then lay the potatoes, cut side up, on a baking sheet. Make sure they are right next to each other touching because they can then support each other and prevent tipping over once the toppings are in them. Spray the potatoes liberally with cooking spray and place in a 400 degree oven.
  6. While the potatoes crisp up, start on the pancetta. In a medium pan, over medium heat, fry the pancetta until nice and crispy and browned.  When done, use a slotted spoon to remove to a bowl, leaving the drippings in the pan. Set aside for now.
  7. In the same pan, drop your dredged shallots and cook over medium high heat, stirring once or twice to prevent sticking and burning, until browned and crispy, about five minutes. Spoon out and set aside. If you’re anything like me, do the dishes now because it’s driving you crazy. 😛
  8. In yet another small bowl, mix together your brie and monterey jack. It will be sticky and kind of turn into a sort of cheese ball. This is actually what you want 😀
  9. Take the pan of potatoes out of the oven and fill each skin with a scoop of the cheese mixture, some of the pancetta and some of the fried shallots. Sprinkle each skin with some Fleur De Sel or sea salt.
  10. Place back in the 400 degree oven for about five minutes or until the cheese is totally melted.
  11. In a small bowl, combine the sour cream and green onions. Serve the potatoes with the sour cream for dipping.
  12. You can serve these potatoes as an appetizer or as a light dinner with a salad. Either way, they are totally delicious!

But Yet I Love Him Anyway

Baked Garlic Parmesan Wings

I love my husband dearly. He is the most wonderful man on Earth in my eyes. He is gentle, kind, loving, funny, has a level of intelligence that puts me to shame and is damned cute too.

Yet, if the Lord had wanted to pick someone more different than myself in the area of food tastes, he couldn’t have found such a man.

I love mushrooms. He says “Ick. Fungus.”

I love sushi. His fish better be baked or fried and with the rice on the side with gravy.

I love milk chocolate. He doesn’t much like sweets (so he says…until I bake) but his chocolate needs to be dark, preferably with orange.

I love steak. He prefers chicken or a hamburger.

I want my hamburger medium rare. His has to be no less than medium well.

I love brussell sprouts and hate carrots. He hates brussell sprouts and loves carrots.

I like ribs. He hates them.

I love fruit and veggies. Other than canned vegetables, getting him to eat fresh fruits or veggies is nigh near impossible.

Years of motherhood and never getting a hot meal has made me almost prefer room temp food. His food must be hot enough to scorch off your taste buds.

But the worst…. the absolute worst (well, other than the not liking sweets thing. That one is hard to handle.) is that my husband, my best friend, the man I will spend eternity with, will not eat chicken wings. Not even one bite. Says there isn’t enough meat on them. I’ve tried to show him the error of his ways with plump juicy wings but he still won’t try them.

Not even these wings I made tonight. Crispy, buttery, redolent of garlic and Parmesan cheese. Simple, easy, yet filled with flavor.

He.Wouldn’t.Even.Try.ONE.

Yet I love him anyway. In spite of these major flaws. Go figure. (Love you darlin’!! <3 )

So please. Make me happy. Make these wings. Eat them. Drip buttery garlicky goodness on yourself. And pity my husband. And pity me… knowing that I had to eat more wings than was good for me due to my husbands stubbornness and poor poor food choices. Sad. So so sad.

*Wipes grease from chin and sobs a garlic scented sob* Continue reading