Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Thanksgiving feasting

This is just a quick post with links to recipes I'll be using for our Alley Thanksgiving meal in case you need a last minute guaranteed good recipe!

Let's start with dessert first...



Now for main meal recipes (Chris is in charge of deviled eggs so I don't have the recipe for that.)

http://thepioneerwoman.com/cooking/2007/07/fresh_corn_cass/ (I'll add panko and parmesano reggiano on top)

http://m.foodnetwork.com/recipes/29720 (I'll add some garlic and bay leaves while potatoes are boiling. And I normally put a little grated nutmeg after I add the milk.)


http://savoryspoon.blogspot.com/search/label/Turkey?m=0 (There are a few posts here since the turkey is so involved.)



Breakfast for Thanksgiving morning...
http://www.southernliving.com/m/food/holidays-occasions/mothers-day-brunch-00400000010690/ (I'll be skipping the bread part and just putting one bag of croutons in the bottom of a buttered casserole pan and following the recipe from there.)

I think that's it!

Monday, August 13, 2012

Baked Four Cheese Grits

Even though I wasn't born in the South, I eat like a Southerner. One of my favorite southern foods besides fried okra is grits. I don't really care how they are fixed...white, yellow, cheesy, buttery, spicy...I will eat them! I went to a brunch shower my friend last weekend and I was supposed to bring hashbrown casserole or some type of grits. The decision of what to fix was not hard...grits, of course!

I have my own recipe for how I like to make grits if I'm putting some kind of meat on top. However, I needed to make a lot of grits with no meat on top. I've tried Paula Dean's recipe for Baked Garlic Cheese Grits and they weren't exactly what I wanted. Honestly, they had too many eggs in them which made them more like an egg, grits casserole. I'm not at all saying I'm a better cook than Paula Deen, however, I'm not always as impressed by her recipes as I am everyone else. I think there are a lot better recipes out there!

So, all that to say, I decided to wing it and create my own Baked Cheese Grits recipe. I really hope you enjoy it! And, if you attended the shower and these taste different at all, it's because I'm kind of guessing on the amounts since I didn't follow a recipe ; ).

Baked Four Cheese Grits

2 cups stone ground yellow grits (I use Bob's Red Mill Corn Grits or their Course Ground Cornmeal. Please don't use cheap white grits!)
3 cups chicken broth (I use 3 cups water and 3 teaspoons of Better Than Bouillon. I think it has a much better flavor than canned or boxed broth. You can also buy boxed chicken stock because it has great flavor but you'll get a ton more uses out of the Better Than Bouillon jar.)
3 cups whole milk
1 cup heavy cream
2 garlic cloves (peeled and cut into halves...needs to be easy to scoop out of the liquid)
2 teaspoons salt
2-3 teaspoons black pepper
1/4 teaspoons or more of Cajun seasoning (optional...I just had some I got while we were in Denver so decided to throw it in.)
8oz. Cabot extra sharp white cheddar cheese, shredded
4oz. Smoked Gouda, shredded (Lowe's Foods has small 4oz blocks that are $2-$4.)
2 oz. cream cheese or mascarpone cheese
4 tablespoons real unsalted butter (not margarine)
1/4-1/2 cup heavy creamy for consistency
1 egg, beaten
1/2 cup sharp yellow or white cheddar, shredded

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a medium saucepan on medium-high heat, add the milk, chicken stock, 1 cup heavy cream, garlic cloves, and salt. Bring it to a boil stirring often to make sure the milk is not burning on the bottom of the pan (Tip: rinse your saucepan in cold water before using it and dump out all of the water but do not wipe it out. This will prevent the milk from sticking). Once it is boiling, quickly remove the garlic cloves and discard. Then, slowly add the grits. Using a whisk, mix it into the liquid. Once all of the grits are well mixed into the liquid, decrease the heat to low and cover with a lid. You must remove the lid and stir frequently (every 2-3 minutes) to keep the grits from sticking to the saucepan. Continue with this process for 8-15 minutes until it is creamy. Remove from the heat.

Season the grits with the cajun seasoning and pepper. Stir in the white Cheddar and Gouda until melted. Then, add the cream cheese or mascarpone and butter. At this time, taste to make sure the amount of salt and pepper are good for your taste. Whisk in the egg. Be sure to whisk quickly as you add the egg so it doesn't cook. If you want to add a little more creaminess, add 1/4-1/2 cup more heavy cream. Pour into a greased 9x13 pan and top with the yellow or white cheddar. Bake in oven for 30-35 minutes.


Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Best Spinach Artichoke Dip!

I LOVE spinach artichoke dip. When I say love, I mean I could probably eat a whole dish in one sitting. I've probably tried more than 10 recipes and this one is the best. I got this from someone at our church who made it for our friend's baby shower. I HAD to have the recipe and now I'm passing it on to you. Yes, you should feel special ; ). Trust me, it is so good. I mean, how could it not be when it has a whole thing of cream cheese in it? I hope you enjoy!

1 can artichoke hearts, drained and chopped
1 box frozen spinach (thawed and drained...I put mine in a colander and run hot water over it for a quick, easy thaw and then squeeze out the liquid in my hands)
1/2 c mayo (the good stuff)
1/2 c sour cream
1 c parmesan cheese
8oz. pkg cream cheese
2 cloves of garlic, finely minced
salt/pepper to taste
lemon juice to taste

Mix  all ingredients together, top with a little of the parmesan cheese. Bake at 350 for 20 minutes.
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