It’s everything you would want in a party dip. The combination of a sharp cheddar and jalapeno pepper jack, a kick from the poblano pepper, sautéed onion and ground beef, diced tomatoes with chiles all stewing in your favorite taco sauce makes this Cheesy, Beefy Taco Dip a real contender for your holiday buffet table. Add a platter of homemade flour and corn tortilla chips and let’s get this party started! I know that we’re always looking for great party foods this time of the year, especially for game days and holidays. This one will not disappoint. You can certainly choose to buy store bought chips, but there’s something really delicious about frying up some fresh tortillas that are crispy, warm and salted. These chips and dip are a match made in south of the border heaven!
Easter Deviled Eggs
They should be called “Angel” eggs because it seems as though just about everyone loves them. In fact, Deviled eggs are generally the first things to be gobbled up at a gathering like Easter Brunch. There are hundreds of variations on the popular party food that Julia Child simply called Stuffed Eggs. Can you just hear her, reading a line from her own book, Julia Child’s Menu Cookbook?
“I do think eggs look most attractive and professional when filled with a pastry bag and cannelated tube!”
Once I found out what the heck “cannelated” meant (fluted or grooved) I agreed with her! So, just in case you have some extra hard boiled eggs in the refrigerator after Easter egg dyeing this week, or you are hosting a get-together tomorrow, let me share one of my favorite recipes for Deviled Eggs. I found it in one of my oldest cookbooks called Quantity Cookery from 1922. I didn’t think you’d appreciate a recipe, however, that calls for 96 halves (or 6 pounds) of hard boiled eggs. I got the recipe down to a manageable size and started with an egg yolk and mayonnaise base. Softened butter and cream cheese add a rich, smooth texture while spicy mustard, prepared horseradish and Worcestershire sauce all add the kick. In fact, many Deviled eggs recipes I came across had dashes and splashes of flavor like lemon juice and hot sauces added to the base, which just goes to show that when it comes to Stuffed Eggs, the Deviling is in the details. Happy Easter and happy brunching!
Chocolate Brownie Cookies
What if you captured all of the delicious decadence of a chocolate brownie and transferred it to a cookie? A cookie that is so chewy, chocolaty and crinkly that it will win the hearts of crispy cookie lovers and soft baked cookie lovers alike? Well, head to the kitchen, because here it is! I discovered this delicious recipe for Chocolate Brownie Cookies in one of my go-to magazines, Cook’s Country, a spin-off publication of Cook’s Illustrated and America’s Test Kitchen. I love these cookies right out of the oven, but now I know to make an extra batch to freeze. Because, you know, you will have one of those nights when you must satisfy your chocolate craving and lucky you! You’ll have just what you need in an airtight container in the freezer! Enough said. Trust me on this. You’re going to get lots and lots of brownie points when you share!
It’s a scrumptious sight to behold! This week I’m sharing with you a Christmas cake bedecked on the outside and hiding a swirl of surprise color inside! It looks like you’ve slaved over it for hours, but really, all you need to make it happen is one box of cake mix, some white icing, food coloring and sprinkles! This is what I call a gorgeous plate of holiday happiness, and it couldn’t be easier to create! Treat your family and friends to this wonderful bit of holiday cheer with a nice spot of tea or a luscious cup of cappuccino!
Watch my How to video for The Christmas Cake here!
This weekend a host of local broadcasters came together for our annual Christmas Concert to raise money for The House of Broadcasting. One year our fundraising efforts helped to create the House of Broadcasting Celebrity Media Cookbook. It’s a treasure trove of great heirloom dishes by your local television and radio personalities. One of the most delicious recipes in the book is an award winning chili recipe from Jack Clifford, the man who created the iconic Food Network. (More than 20 years later, about 90 million people agree that Jack’s idea was a brilliant one and changed forever the way we view food.) Jack’s scrumptious chili has won dozens of chili cook off awards. It kicks you with five different spices and yet has a smooth-as-silk finish on your palate. This chili’s base is a combination of beef chunks, ground beef and pork with plenty of onions and garlic! So, grab a big pot and get cooking, just in time for “chili” evenings!
If you’d like a copy of the House of Broadcasting Cookbook, visit www.houseofbroadcasting.com.
By the way, Jack used to say that the Department of Homeland Security had identified his chili as a WMID (Weapon of Mass Indigestion). But I say Clifford’s Chili it’s so good, it’s what the cowboys call MGS–Mighty Good Sop!
Watch my Video for Clifford’s Chili here!
Homemade Chicken Nuggets
The kids are finally back in the classroom, and when they come home from school or sports they are generally ravenous, right? It’s a pretty good bet that if given a choice between chicken nuggets and anything else, my guess is it’s going to be the nuggets. So, why not make them delicious and perhaps healthier than the fast food version? Plus, kids love to cook these days, and if your young ones are old enough to be safe around the cook top and oven, this might be a great meal that they can make themselves! (Studies show that when kids take the initiative to cook a meal, they enjoy not only eating the food, but are more apt to want to learn how to prepare meals more often.) I discovered that on a field trip a few years ago to a Boys & Girls Club where I was teaching a cooking class. About fifty kids huddled around as I taught a hands-on cooking demonstration. They were mesmerized. Many shared their at-home cooking experiences with Mom and Dad. I was, quite frankly, stunned at their interested in every aspect of cooking, whether chopping and dicing, sautéing and of course, sharing what they had prepared. Back to the chicken nuggets. This recipe is fairly simple and super delicious, and it’s the kind of recipe that may flesh out whether you have a budding Jacques Pepin or Julia Child just waiting to cook up something fun for the family!