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Parmesan and Black Pepper Cornbread Biscotti

22 Aug


I’ve made plenty of sweet biscotti in my day but this was my first time to make a savory version. This crispy treat pairs perfectly with soup and works as a great utensil for dipping and scooping. Feel free to go light on the black pepper, but I’m a total pepper person so used the full 2 teaspoons. The parmesan and cornmeal makes for a nice crunchy texture and is such a delicious alternative to your usual cornbread. Enjoy!

Parmesan and Black Pepper Cornbread Biscotti

1 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup yellow cornmeal
1/4 cup sugar
2 Tbsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 – 2 tsp ground black pepper
3/4 cup grated parmesan, divided
2 Tbsp vegetable oil
1/4 cup butter, melted and cooled slightly
1/4 cup buttermilk
3 eggs, divided

Yield: 12-16 pieces

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Prepare a large baking sheet with parchment paper.

Whisk together flour, cornmeal, sugar, baking powder, salt, and black pepper to remove any lumps. Stir in 1/2 cup of parmesan; set aside.

In a separate bowl, combine vegetable oil, butter, buttermilk, and 2 of the eggs. Pour over the dry ingredients and stir just until everything is moistened.

Spread dough onto a baking sheet lined with a Silpat or parchment paper and pat into a 12″ x 4″ rectangle. Beat the remaining egg and brush it over the dough with a pastry brush. Sprinkle with the reserved parmesan.

Bake for 20 minutes. Cool for 10 minutes on a cooling rack. Lower the oven to 300 F while it cools.

Gently slide the loaf onto a cutting board. Use a serrated knife to slice into 1/2″ thick slices. Place slices, cut side down, onto the lined baking sheet.

Bake for 15 minutes; flip biscotti and bake for another 15 – 20 minutes or until the biscotti is golden and crisp. Let it cool before serving. Eat on it’s own or dip it into soup. Store in an airtight container.

Source: Fake Ginger, slightly adapted from Southern Living


Green Chile Soup

14 Oct

I’ve become such a fan of green chiles, especially after visiting New Mexico and having my fill there. I especially find myself adding them to pizzas for some extra spice. (pepperoni and green chile is amazing!) When I saw this soup recipe I knew it was a must try. You can easily make it vegetarian or add some shredded chicken to make it even more filling and flavorful. Feel free to use canned green chiles, but I opted to use a few fresh roasted ones instead.

Top this with some sour cream, shredded cheese, or fresh cilantro, which I always go overboard with. Or whatever you think sounds fitting and delicious. But be warned, if you have a sensitive tongue, this soup has some kick to it!

Green Chile Soup

2 Tbsp butter
1 shallot, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 large ribs celery, diced
1-7 oz. can whole fire roasted green chiles, drained and diced
6 cups chicken or vegetable broth
1/2 tsp chili powder
1 tsp ground cumin
Salt & pepper, to taste
2 large carrots, peeled and finely diced
1 cup frozen sweet corn
3/4 cup milk or heavy cream

Yield: 4-6 servings

Heat a large pot over medium heat. Melt the butter and sauté the shallot and celery for about 5 minutes. Stir in the garlic and green chiles and sauté for about 3 more minutes. Pour in the broth, chili powder, cumin, salt, and pepper and bring to a boil. Cover the pot with a lid and reduce heat to a simmer. Simmer the soup for 10-15 minutes and then remove from the heat. Using an immersion blender, carefully puree the soup and return it to heat. Stir in the diced carrots and cook until they’re softened, about 5 minutes (I cut mine pretty small). Stir in the corn and cream/milk and let it simmer for a few more minutes.

Serve hot with any toppings you like. Enjoy!

Source: Slightly adapted from Lauren’s Latest

Baked Spinach Artichoke Dip

4 Sep

This dip has become a staple at gatherings on my side of the family. I’ve made it several times, always intending to snap a few photos before eating, but then forgetting until after it’s been demolished.

So yesterday, while celebrating the holiday as well as a few birthdays and my parents’ 30th anniversary, (which is today – congrats yall!) I had another chance to capture this tasty dip. Yes, a few bites had already been taken at this point. But nonetheless, here is the spinach artichoke dip that’s won over the hearts and stomachs of my family. My younger brother even agreed to be my hand model. (thanks Matt!)

This dip is the perfect thing to make and bring as an appetizer for a group. It is creamy, cheesy, and still feels a tad healthy with the spinach and artichoke. Dig in with some tortilla chips, pretzels, crackers, or pita chips and you’ll have some happy guests and a requested repeat dish!

Baked Spinach Artichoke Dip

2 (10 oz) packages frozen chopped spinach, defrosted and drained
1 Tbsp butter
1 (8-oz) package cream cheese (low fat if wanted)
1 garlic clove, chopped
1 (14-oz.) can artichoke hearts, drained and chopped
1/2 cup light sour cream
1/2 cup shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese, divided
Chips for dipping

Let the frozen spinach defrost or microwave it until defrosted. Squeeze out as much water as possible and set aside.

Melt the butter in a nonstick pot over medium heat. Add the cream cheese and garlic and cook for a few minutes, stirring constantly until the cream cheese melts. Stir in the spinach, chopped artichokes, sour cream, and 1/4 cup mozzarella cheese. Keep stirring until the cheese melts and mixture is fully combined.

Transfer the mixture to a shallow baking dish. (I used a 9 inch baking dish) Sprinkle the remaining 1/4 cup of mozzarella cheese on top.

Bake at 350° for about 15 minutes or until dip is hot and cheese is getting browned and bubbly. Serve immediately with chips or crackers for dipping.

Source: Slightly adapted from My Recipes

Santa Fe Corn Chowder

12 Jul

My husband was recently in Africa for about two weeks and while I missed him like crazy and wished I could’ve gone too, it was a good opportunity to make some dishes that aren’t up his alley! (like these soups!)

This soup is called Santa Fe Corn Chowder and ironically enough, I’ll be visiting New Mexico for the first time in less than a week! The corn and pepper combo is delicious and of course, cheddar cheese makes everything better. The touch of creaminess makes for a mighty tasty and hearty soup that anyone from Santa Fe (or elsewhere) would love.

Santa Fe Corn Chowder

2 Tbsp unsalted butter
1 cup finely chopped bell peppers
1 whole small onion, finely chopped
2 Tbsp flour whisked into 1/4 cup water
1 1/2 cup chicken or vegetablev stock
2 tsp cumin
2 tsp chili powder
2 cans (15.25 oz each) sweet corn, drained
1/2 cup milk
1 cup sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
Dash of salt and pepper

For garnish:
Sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
Sour cream
Chives or Green Onions, chopped

Serves 4-6

Melt butter over medium heat in a medium saucepan. Add bell peppers and onion and saute gently until they begin to soften and onion begins to turn transparent, about 3 minutes. Add flour/water mixture and stock, stirring to combine. Increase heat to medium-high and cook until liquids begin to boil gently. Add cumin, chili powder, corn, and half-and-half. Cook until soup again comes to a low boil.

Using an immersion blender, puree the chowder slightly, just until no large pieces remain. (The goal is to break down large pieces of corn and pepper, but not to reduce it to a completely smooth puree.) Remove the immersion blender and add cheese, stirring to combine. Continue heating until cheese melts, about 5 minutes. Add salt and pepper, to taste.

Serve immediately, garnished with extra cheese, sour cream, and chives.

Source: Slightly adapted from Inquiring Chef

Cauliflower and White Cheddar Soup

8 Jul

Why am I craving soup in the summertime? I have no idea, but am going for it!

Cheesy, creamy soups are one of my downfalls. Yes, this has cauliflower and other healthy things in it, but ultimately, it’s not the most waistline friendly soup around. But hey, it’s a good way to get folks to eat their vegetables, right?

Roasted cauliflower and garlic mixes beautifully with white cheddar cheese – the sharpness really balances with the hearty vegetables to create a delicious and filling soup. I’ll certainly be making this again when the weather better agrees!

Cauliflower and White Cheddar Soup

1 medium head cauliflower, cut into florets
4 whole, peeled garlic cloves
3 Tbsp olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
1 medium onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1/2 Tbsp fresh thyme, chopped or dried
4 cups vegetable or chicken broth
1 1/2 cups white cheddar, shredded
1 cup milk
Salt and pepper to taste

Yield: 4-6 servings

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Toss the cauliflower florets and whole garlic cloves in two tablespoons of olive oil along with the salt and pepper and arrange them in a single layer on a large baking sheet. Roast the cauliflower until lightly golden brown, about 20-30 minutes.

Heat 1 Tbsp of oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion and saute until tender, about 5-7 minutes. Add the garlic and thyme and saute until fragrant, about a minute. Add the broth, cauliflower, and roasted garlic and bring to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer, covered, for 20 minutes. Puree the soup until it reaches your desired consistency with an immersion blender or in batches in a blender. (be careful with the blender lid since it’s hot!)

Mix in the cheese, let it melt and season with salt and pepper. Mix in the milk and remove from heat. Garnish as desired and serve while hot. Enjoy!


Cucumber Salad with Lemon and Dill

10 Jun

Have you ever thrown something together on a whim, trying to clean out some items in your fridge, and it turns out a lot better than expected? This is one of those dishes – what a nice surprise it was!

I had a cucumber, some radishes,onion, carrot, and lemon that needed to be used so I grabbed a few sprigs of fresh dill from the garden and tossed it all together with a little oil and white wine vinegar and poof – a tasty cucumber salad was born. It is light, healthy, and tastes a bit like pickles and is an easy side dish to pair with a sandwich or simply eat on it’s own!

Cucumber Salad with Lemon and Dill

1 cucumber, sliced
4 radishes, sliced
1/4 red onion, diced
1 carrot, shredded
1/2 lemon, juiced
1 1/2 tsp olive oil
1/2 tsp white wine vinegar
Fresh dill, minced
Dash of salt and pepper

Combine all of the ingredients in a bowl and mix to combine. Refrigerate until ready to eat.

Source: A Beckster Original

Mango Pico de Gallo

5 Jun

I never used to be a big lover of pico de gallo, but now I’m a huge fan. It’s such a delicious healthy addition to any meal. The traditional style is great, but this mango version is perfect for the summer with it’s fresh fruity flavor. Pile it on top of a taco or simply scoop it up with tortilla chips and you’re in for a tasty treat!

Mango Pico de Gallo

2 large tomatoes, chopped
1/4 red onion, diced
1 small jalapeño, deseeded and minced
2 mangos, chopped
Juice from one lime
Dash of salt

Combine all of the ingredients in a bowl and mix until combined. Add additional salt or cilantro to your liking. Refrigerate until ready to serve and enjoy!

Source: Slightly adapted from A Zesty Bite