Sunday, September 14, 2008

Grilled Potato Skins

I was watching Food Network the other day and saw Paula Deen do a show with her son Bobby that was all grilling foods. They made these potato skins and I knew that I had to try them. They were absolutely delicious. I was wary about how crispy they could actually be when cooked on the grill, but they were very crispy...better than fried I think! I always eat my potato skins with BBQ sauce, and these were no exception. Chad says between these and the crash hot potatoes he never wants a baked potato again!

Grilled Potato Skins

4 russet potatoes
4 tablespoons butter, melted
minced garlic
Salt and pepper
shredded Cheddar
4 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled
sour cream

Preheat oven at 350. Clean and bake potatoes in oven for 1 hour. When done, allow to slightly cool and cut into halves.

Preheat grill to medium heat. Scoop out the pulp, leaving a 1/4-inch thick shell for the toppings. Put garlic in melted butter. Cut the potatoes into quarter wedges, brush with butter and season with salt and pepper. Place on grill and cook until crisp, about 10 minutes. During the last few minutes of grilling, remove potatoes and place on a cookie sheet. Top the potatoes with cheese and bacon and place back on top of grill.

Apricot Pork Loin

Wow, it's been a long time since I've blogged. My poor little site has been neglected. Now that the move is completed and life has settled down a bit, I'm going to catch up on all my posts that I've been meaning to do and make a resolution to blog more frequently.

Last week I had Kelly over for dinner and made her my apricot pork. I don't know if this recipe started with my mom or my Aunt Carm, but it's a regular in our house. It's great for company as well, because it's so easy and you don't have to stand in the kitchen and cook's an impressive dish that is simple to prepare.

Apricot Pork Loin

pork loin roast or pork tenderloin
1/2 cup apricot preserves
1 package onion soup mix
2 tbsp. honey mustard

Preheat oven to 375. Mix preserves, soup mix and honey mustard in a small bowl. Line a baking dish with foil, leaving enough overhang to fold over the pork and make a packet. Place pork in dish and cover with preserve mixture. Seal foil around meat, and bake until pork is cooked through. Slice and serve with juices.

Crash Hot Potatoes

Any potato is a good potato to me, but these were pretty special. The baked potato inside with the crunchy, salty outside was a perfect combination. This definitely beats out a plain old baked potato, and it was just as easy to make.

Crash Hot Potatoes
From The Pioneer Woman Cooks

16 small, round potatoes with skin left on (I only had russet so I picked out the smallest ones)
olive oil

Add the potatoes to a large pan of salted water. Bring to the boil. Simmer briskly for 15 minutes or until potatoes are almost cooked. Remove potatoes from the pan and place on a baking tray. Using a masher or the back of a big spoon, gently squish each potato until they are half intact, half broken up. Brush with olive oil and sprinkle with salt (a lot!) and pepper. Roast in a very hot (450) oven for 15-20 minutes. I added some shredded cheddar cheese about five minutes before they were done, and served with sour cream.

Pork with Sweet Pineapple BBQ sauce

For my friend Daniela's 30th birthday we threw her a luau. I was excited to plan a menu that fit the theme, and knew I wanted to include my pineapple bbq sauce. It goes perfect with pulled pork.

Pork with Sweet Pineapple BBQ sauce

large pork loin roast

Place pork in crockpot and cover with liquid. Cook on low for 8 hours. Shred and return to crockpot and moisten with sauce, saving some to pass on side. Serve on Hawaiian sweet rolls.

For sauce:
28 oz. ketchup
1/2 box brown sugar
1/2 cup vinegar
3 tablespoons worsteshire sauce
1 can crushed pineapple, drained
juice from one lemon

Mix all ingredients and simmer for 30 minutes.

Crab Rangoon

I love, love, love crab rangoon. When Kelly made it for a get-together that Chad and I were out of town for, I was really bummed that I missed it. I thought it would be good for the luau party, and people ate them up. I should have made a double batch because they went quick. I bought imitation crab meat to cut down on costs, but when I make these again I will use real crab meat.

Crab Rangoon
From My Sweet Life

8 oz cream cheese, softened
3 green onions, finely chopped (I used about 6)
1 cup of crab meat
1 tbsp of hot sauce (Sriracha)
1 package of wonton wrappers

Preheat oven to 400. Mix all ingredients well in bowl, except wrappers. Put about a teaspoon and a half of mixture in center of each wrapper. Twist wrapper and pinch to seal. Place won tons on baking sheet coated with cooking spray. Bake until they start to brown - should be about 15 to 20 minutes. Serve with sweet chili sauce (we used the Smack My Sweet Ass and Call Me Sally from Tijuana Flats...yum!).

Teriyaki Chicken Skewers

These were simple to make, were good for the party because you could prep ahead and were really good. Perfect party food! The picture looks pretty was hard to try to take food pictures in the middle of a party =)

Teriyaki Chicken Skewers
From Paradise Found Online

1 pound skinless, boneless chicken breasts halves
1/2 pound bacon
1 can pineapple chunks
teriyaki sauce/marinade

Cut chicken into bite-sized pieces. Wrap with about 1/3 slice of bacon, thread onto toothpick, and top with pineapple chunk. Marinate for 4 hours or longer in teriyaki sauce. Preheat oven to 375. Place marinated appetizers onto foil lined baking sheets. Bake for 20 minutes or until chicken is done and bacon golden brown. Drain on paper towels. Serve hot.

Roasted Brussel Sprouts

Brussel sprouts are a vegetable people love to hate, but I love it. I think if you cook it the right way it's absolutely delicious. This is my second favorite way to prepare brussel sprouts (my favorite way is here). This is also really good with broccoli.

Roasted Brussel Sprouts

Brussel sprouts, trimmed and cut in half through the stem
olive oil
salt and pepper
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 lemon

Preheat oven to 400. Toss brussel sprouts with olive oil, salt and pepper and place in a single layer on a baking sheet. Bake for 20 minutes. During the last few minutes of baking, heat olive oil in a small pan and saute garlic. Toss sauteed garlic with roasted brussel sprouts and squeeze fresh lemon juice over.

Cream Cheese Coffee Cake

This was a breakfast from one of my many trips this summer. My mom, aunts, cousins and I went to Hilton Head for a girls weekend and this was a highly requested dish from all of us. I didn't actually make this one, so credit goes to my mom!

Cream Cheese Coffee Cake

2 packages flaky layers biscuits
1 box cream cheese
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 cups granola
1 stick melted butter

Preheat oven to 350. Grease a bundt pan (if you don't have one you can use a loaf pan). Mix the brown sugar and granola in a bowl. Take a biscuit, separate in half and put a spoonful of cream cheese in the middle. Pinch biscuit back together so the cream cheese is enclosed in the biscuit. Dip biscuit in melted butter and roll in granola mixture. Place upright in pan. Repeat with remaining biscuits, fitting them all tightly in baking dish. Pour rest of melted butter over the top of the biscuits and sprinkle with remaining granola. Bake for 30 minutes or until biscuits are cooked through and coffee cake is golden brown.

Carmelized Shallot Blue Cheese Dip

This was also from my girls trip to Hilton Head. The aunts, mom and I all love snacking on dips, and this was a favorite of the weekend. It's really easy to make and tastes delicious.

Carmelized Shallot Blue Cheese Dip
From Epicurious

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 1/4 cups thinly sliced shallots (about 4 ounces)
3/4 cup mayonnaise
3/4 cup sour cream
4 ounces blue cheese, room temperature

Heat oil in heavy medium saucepan over medium-low heat. Add shallots. Cover and cook until shallots are deep golden brown, stirring occasionally, about 20 minutes. Cool.
Whisk together mayonnaise and sour cream in medium bowl to blend. Add blue cheese. Using rubber spatula, mash mixture until smooth. (I used the blender, and when I've made it at home I use my food processor) Stir in caramelized shallots. Season dip to taste with salt and pepper. Cover dip and refrigerate until flavors blend, about 2 hours. (Can be made 2 days ahead. Keep refrigerated.) Serve dip chilled or at room temperature. It's great with pita chips or veggies.