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Tuesday, October 25, 2011


A football game at the end of October always puts people in a festive mood. Here's a menu to go along with all the fun:

Appetizers:                                                                                                                                    Corned Beef pickle roll ups 
Pepperoni Pizza Puffs with marinara 

Beef Brisket Sandwiches 

Cilantro Slaw
Warm Blue Potato and Green Onion Salad

 Caramel Apple Cake

Dark and Stormy

(courtesy pipandebby blog)

Photo Credit: Pip and Ebby

sort of a take on a reuben...

8 slices corned beef lunch meat
4 oz. cream cheese
splash of worchestershire sauce
4 medium dill pickles

Lay corned beef in stacks of two on a hard surface. Spread 1 oz. of cream cheese onto each stack. Place a pickle directly in the center of each. Roll corned beef around the pickles and cut each roll into four equal parts.



(adapted from a Rachel Ray recipe)

These are yummy little bites that are perfect for tailgating.  I love that the recipe does NOT call for Bisquick (which contains trans fat).  It's not exactly a healthy appetizer, but game day is "cheat day" so splurge and enjoy! Makes roughly 24 mini-muffin size "puffs."

3/4 cup flour
3/4 tsp baking powder
1 TBSP Italian seasoning
pinch of salt
pinch of red pepper flakes
3/4 cup whole milk
1 egg, lightly beaten
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 cup chopped pepperoni
1/2 cup pizza sauce

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Grease a 24-cup mini-muffin pan. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, Italian seasoning, salt and red pepper flakes; whisk in the milk and egg. Stir in the mozzarella, Parmesan and pepperoni; let stand for 10 minutes.

Stir the batter and divide among the mini-muffin cups. Bake until puffed and golden, 20 to 25 minutes.

Meanwhile, microwave the pizza sauce until warmed through. Serve the puffs with the pizza sauce for dipping.


(Adapted from big girls small kitchen blog)

4 lbs beef brisket
6 garlic cloves, cut lengthwise into 4 pieces
3 cups beef stock
2 yellow onions, sliced
1 TBSP extra virgin olive oil
1 cup ketchup
1/3 cup brown sugar
3 tsp salt
1 tsp Chinese 5 spice powder
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp cayenne
1 cinnamon stick
2 bay leaves
For Serving:
8 onion or challah rolls
scallions, sliced

Preheat the oven to 500 degrees F. Using a paring knife, cut small incisions in the meat and shove the pieces of garlic into them. Do this until the meat is stuffed with garlic all over.  I also cut off a good bit of the fat cap that was on my brisket - personal preference.  Place the brisket in a rimmed baking dish (preferably metal), and brown it in the oven, about 10 minutes per side.

Remove the meat, and pour in the beef stock (NOTE: if you are using a pyrex dish, wait a few minutes for the pan to come to room temperature, so it does not shatter). Turn the oven down to 350 degrees F; cover the dish with foil, and cook in the oven for 1 hour.

In the meantime, saute the onions in the olive oil over medium-low heat until soft and caramelized, about 25-30 minutes, stirring occasionally.

After it has cooked an hour, remove the meat from the oven. In a small bowl mix together the ketchup, brown sugar, salt, chinese 5 spice, cumin, ginger and cayenne.

Add that mixture to the pan with the brisket, along with the cinnamon stick and bay leaves.  Whisk (using a fork) all together with the beef stock.

When the onions have finished cooking, arrange them on top of the meat (apologies for the blurry pic).

Cover the pan with foil, and return it to the oven for 3 hours. Remove the meat from the oven, allow it to cook slightly, and then transfer to a cutting board.

Using 2 forks, pull the brisket apart into chunks. It should be an easy task.  You may want to also cut the chunks up into slightly smaller pieces so it's easier to eat as a sandwich.

Return the meat to the sauce and serve, or store in the fridge over night in an airtight container – the brisket can be made a day or two in advance. Then reheat on the grill in a tin pan at your tailgate, and serve on rolls.

Here is my brisket - all packed up and go to my tailgate party!


2 limes, juiced (or roughly 4 TBSP)
½ lemon, juiced (roughly 1 TBSP)
2 TBSP mayonnaise (preferably Hellman's)
1 garlic clove, minced
5 pickled jalapeños slices (canned or from a jar), minced
½ tsp chili powder
Dash pepper (to taste)
½ TBSP salt
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
½ cup cilantro, chopped
½ head Napa cabbage, thinly shredded or sliced (or one bag of pre-shredded coleslaw mix)

Combine first 8 ingredients in a large salad bowl.

Gradually whisk in the olive oil until all elements are combined.

Toss together with the cabbage and the cilantro.


(adapted from big girls small kitchen)

1 pound small blue potatoes, halved
2 TBSP extra virgin olive oil
1 large garlic clove, minced
3 green onions (scallions), white parts thinly sliced, green parts cut into 2 inch pieces
2 TBSP sherry vinegar
2 TBSP chicken stock
1/4 tsp salt

Bring a medium pot of salted water to boil. Cook the potatoes until nearly cooked through, but still slightly firm, about 5-10 minutes, but test with the point of a knife as you go. Drain the potatoes.

In the same pot, over medium heat, add the olive oil, garlic, and white part of the scallions. Saute until the garlic is beginning to brown, about 1 minute.

Add the vinegar, stock, and salt and bring to a boil. Simmer for 1 minute.

Add the potatoes back to the pot and cook for another minute or so. Off the heat, add the green part of the scallions and toss to combine.


I wish I could tell you where I got this recipe, but I jotted it down awhile ago and now don't know whom to give credit to!  It's delicious though and your kitchen and your tummy will thank you! SOOO GOOD!

1-1/2 cups canola oil
1-1/2 cups sugar
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
3 eggs
3 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
3-1/2 cups diced peeled apples
1 cup chopped walnuts
2 tsp vanilla extract

1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/3 cup half-and-half cream
1/4 cup butter, cubed
Dash salt
1 cup confectioners' sugar
Chopped walnuts, optional

In a large bowl, combine the oil, sugars and eggs until well blended. Combine the flour, cinnamon, baking soda, salt and nutmeg; gradually add to creamed mixture until blended. Fold in the apples, walnuts and vanilla.
Pour into a greased and floured 10-in. tube pan. Bake at 325 degrees F for 1-1/2 hours or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool in pan 10 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely.
In a small heavy saucepan over medium-low heat, cook and stir the brown sugar, cream, butter and salt until sugar is dissolved. Transfer to a small bowl; cool to room temperature. Beat in confectioners' sugar until smooth; drizzle over cake. Sprinkle with nuts if desired. Yield: 12-16 servings.

Just this weekend, while visiting friends in Kentucky, I found the perfect Halloween Drink:


Ice cubes
1 to 2 juicy limes (you need 1-ounce juice and a wheel for garnish)
1 ounce golden rum, (recommended: Mount Gay)
6 ounces ginger beer
1/2 ounce dark rum, (recommended: Meyers's)

Fill a highball glass or large wine goblet with ice cubes. Add the lime juice and the golden rum. Top off with the ginger beer and stir lightly. Float a layer of the dark rum on top by pouring it over the back of a wide, flat spoon. (Don't worry if it doesn't float; it tastes great either way.) Garnish with the lime wheel.

*All photos are mine unless otherwise noted.

Monday, October 3, 2011


We head to another Georgia Tech game this coming Saturday. The weather will be PERFECT, and it'll be an ACC rivalry game against Maryland. It's a noon game, so that means brunch to start (by 9:30-10AM), AND an after game party of sorts to enjoy while the gameday traffic dies down.

Here's what I have planned:


2 new drink possibilites: (SEE BELOW)

Cinnamon Roll Cake
(Adapted from cookinupnorth)

Photo Credit: cookinupnorth

3 cups flour
1/4 tsp salt
1 cups sugar
4 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 cups milk
2 eggs
2 tsp vanilla
1 stick butter, melted
2 sticks butter, softened
1 cup brown sugar
2 TBSP flour
1 TBSP cinnamon
Mix everything together except for the butter. Slowly stir in the melted butter and pour into a greased 9x13 pan. For the topping, mix all the ingredients together until well combined. Drop evenly over the batter and swirl with a knife. Bake at 350 for 28-32 minutes.
2 cups powdered sugar
5 TBSP milk
1 tsp vanilla
Mix together.  While the cake is still warm, drizzle the glaze over the cake.


(Adapted from Jimmy Dean)
From an earlier post, but it was just a hit, I'm bringing it back for another brunch tailgate!

Photo Credit: Pinterest
1 pkg. (26 ounces) frozen shredded hash brown potatoes
1 pkg. Jimmy Dean Hearty Original Sausage Crumbles
1 cup (4 ounces) shredded mozzarella cheese
1/2 cup (2 ounces) shredded parmesan cheese
1/2 cup julienne cut sun dried tomatoes packed in oil, drained
6 green onions, sliced
12 eggs
1/2 cups milk
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 ground black pepper

Photo Credit: Cate Bogue

Photo Credit: Cate Bogue

Photo Credit: Cate Bogue

Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
Spray a 6 quart slow cooker with cooking spray. Layer 1/2 of the potatoes on the bottom of slow cooker. Top with half of the sausage, mozzarella and Parmesan cheese, sun dried tomatoes and green onion. Repeat layering. Beat eggs, milk and pepper in large bowl with a wire whisk until well blended. Pour evenly over potato-sausage mixture.
Cook on low setting for 6-8 hours or on high setting for 3-4 hours or until eggs are set.

12 servings (about 1 cup each)


Pinterest image
I honestly have no idea where this recipe came from.  My mother used to make it and give it as Christmas gifts to neighbors.  She would roll it up and then wrap it in parchment paper and tie the ends.  Then she'd gift it with instructions to slice the pinwheels and serve, so people could have something lovely to enjoy on Christmas morning.

2 c. all purpose flour
1 tbsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
1/4 c. shortening
2/3 c. milk
1 lb. hot bulk pork sausage
1 c. shredded cheese (optional)
Combine flour, baking powder and salt. Cut into shortening until mixture resembles coarse meal. Add milk, stirring until well blended. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Knead lightly 3 or 4 times.
Roll dough into an 18"x12" rectangle. Spread sausage (at room temperature) and cheese over dough, leaving a 1/2" margin on sides. Roll dough lengthwise, jelly fashion, pinch seams and ends to seal. Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.

Slice into 1/4" slices. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes or until brown.

Makes about 3 1/2 dozen. Can be made ahead and frozen.


A bit easier cheater version, but it's still very good!

2/3 of a pound package Jimmy Dean Hot Sausage
1 package Pillsbury Crescent sheets (Recipe Creations)

Unroll the Crescent sheet and use your fingers to square it up.
Break the raw sausage up and sprinkle it over the pastry sheet.
Use your hands to press the sausage into a thin layer that completely covers the pastry sheet.
Roll it up length-wise.
Put the log on a cookie sheet and freeze for approximately 30-45 minutes until it is hard enough to cut through without the log losing its shape. Check it at 30 minutes, then every 5-10 minutes. Do not freeze it solid!
Using a serrated knife, cut the log into 1/3 inch slices. One log should make about 35 slices. Place the slices back onto the cookie sheet and freeze solid. Store the frozen slices in a freezer bag until ready to serve.
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Put the frozen slices on a lightly greased cookie sheet and bake for 15-20 minutes until the sausage is cooked and the pastry is golden brown.
Cook time: 15-20 minutes

(for the Auburn game)

Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
(for the Kentucky game)
Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
6 cups honey graham cereal
1 cup honey-roasted peanuts
1 cup coarsely chopped pecans
1/2 cup butter
1 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
1/4 cup light corn syrup
Wax paper
2 cups pretzel sticks
1 cup candy-coated chocolate pieces

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Combine cereal and next 2 ingredients in a very large bowl.
Melt butter in a 3-qt. saucepan over medium-low heat; stir in sugar and corn syrup. Bring to a boil over medium heat; boil 2 minutes.
Pour butter mixture over cereal mixture, and stir quickly to coat. Spread in a single layer on a lightly greased aluminum foil-lined jelly-roll pan.
Bake at 350° for 10 minutes. Transfer to wax paper, and cool completely (about 10 minutes). Break into pieces, and toss with pretzel sticks and chocolate pieces.


4 oz cream cheese, room temperature
1/4 cup sour cream
1/4 cup mayonnaise
1/2 cup mozzarella, grated
1/4 cup parmigiano reggiano (parmesan), grated
1 cup pizza sauce
1/2 cup mozzarella, grated
1/4 cup parmigiano reggiano (parmesan), grated
2 oz pepperoni, sliced
2 TBSP green pepper, sliced
2 TBSP black olives, sliced (I always use kalamata here)

Mix the cream cheese, sour cream mayonnaise, mozzarella and parmigiana reggiano, and spread it across the bottom of a pie plate.
Spread the pizza sauce on top and sprinkle on the cheese, pepperoni, green pepper and olives.
Bake in a preheated 350 degrees F oven until the cheese has melted, bubbling and golden brown, about 20 minutes. Serve with pita chips.


This recipe is adapted from Southern Living.

2 (16-oz.) jars drained, mixed pickled vegetables
3/4 cup pimiento-stuffed Spanish olives, chopped
2 tablespoons bottled olive oil-and-vinegar dressing
12 small dinner rolls, cut in half
6 Swiss cheese slices, cut in half
12 thin deli ham slices
12 Genoa salami slices
6 provolone cheese slices, cut in half

Pulse pickled vegetables in food processor 8 to 10 times or until finely chopped. Stir in olives and dressing.

Spread 1 heaping tablespoonful pickled vegetable/olive mixture over cut side of each roll bottom.

Top each with 1 Swiss cheese slice half, 1 ham slice, 1 salami slice, 1 provolone cheese slice half, and roll tops.

Cover with plastic wrap. Serve immediately, or chill until ready to serve.


This recipe is super yummy and very easy because you don't peel the potatoes! Simply chop them up and cook. Then puree half of the soup; add cream cheese, and you are ready to transport to your tailgate.

5lbs Russet Potatoes, washed but NOT peeled. Diced into 1/2 inch(ish) cubes
1 large yellow onion, diced
10 cloves of garlic, whole
8 cups chicken stock
16 oz cream cheese (I used low fat)
1 TBSP seasoned salt or all-purpose seasoning
Crumbled bacon
Shredded cheddar cheese
Green onions

Photo Credit: Cate Bogue

Photo Credit: Cate Bogue

Photo Credit: Cate Bogue

Photo Credit: Cate Bogue

Photo Credit: Cate Bogue

Photo Credit: Cate Bogue

Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
Add potatoes, onion, garlic, seasoning and chicken stock to slow cooker. Cook on high for 6 hours or low for 10 hours. Remove and puree the garlic cloves along with 1/2 to 1/3rd of the soup, and then reintroduce to the remainder in the crock pot. Stir in the cream cheese and allow to melt. Stir every 10-15 minutes until soup is well blended.
Top with your choice of garnishes & serve!


(Adapted from Smitten Kitchen)

Photo Credit: Smitten Kitchen
Makes about 6 cups of slaw

2 heads of broccoli
1/2 cup thinly sliced almonds, toasted
1/3 cup dried cranberries
1/2 small red onion, finely chopped

Buttermilk Dressing
1/2 cup buttermilk, well-shaken
1/3 cup mayonnaise
2 tablespoons cider vinegar
1 tablespoon sugar
3 tablespoons finely chopped shallot

Trim broccoli and cut it into large chunks. From here, you can either feed it through your food processor’s slicing blade, use a mandoline to cut it into thin slices, or simply had chop it into smaller pieces. I used the stem and the flowerets, but if you have a broccoli stem aversion you can just use the tops.

Toss the sliced broccoli with the almonds, cranberries and red onion in a large bowl. Meanwhile, whisk the dressing ingredients in a smaller one, with a good pinch of salt and black pepper. Pour the dressing over the broccoli and toss it well. Season well with salt and pepper to taste.

(Adapted from

Photo Credit: Cookiesandcups
2/3 cup butter, at room temp (equivalent is 11 TBSP + 1 tsp butter)
2 cups packed light brown sugar
2 eggs
2 tsp vanilla
2 cups flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup peeled, chopped tart apple such as Granny Smith (1 large)
1/2 cup toffee bits

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Spray 9×13 baking pan lightly with cooking or baking spray.
Cream butter and brown sugar in mixer until smooth. Add eggs and vanilla and beat on medium until combined. Add flour, baking powder, and salt and mix until just combined.
Stir in the chopped apples and toffee bits until evenly distributed. Spread in prepared pan and bake for 30 minutes until the center is set. Let cool completely before slicing or frosting.

1/2 cup butter
1 cup packed light brown sugar
1/4 cup milk
2 cups powdered sugar

Melt butter in a medium saucepan. Add brown sugar and milk and bring to a boil. Remove from heat. Let cool for 5 minutes. Stir in powdered sugar with a whisk. Let cool until it thickens enough to spread. Stir before spreading on top of blondies.
Let frosting set for 30 minutes and then cut into bars.

Photo Credit: Cate Bogue

Photo Credit: Cate Bogue

Photo Credit: Cate Bogue

Photo Credit: Cate Bogue

Photo Credit: Cate Bogue


Just heard about this drink, and since it's going to reach 80 degrees after the game, and blackberries are just barely still available, here we go!


1.5 oz Russian Standard Vodka
5 blackberries
3 oz Lemonade
Muddle four blackberries in bottom of a tumbler. Add ice, Russian Standard Vodka and lemonade. Garnish with remaining blackberry.


If it ends up being a chilly evening, I'll serve this enticing one:

Kentucky Hot Toddy

1/4 cup Fresh Squeezed Meyers Lemon Juice
1/2 cup Fresh Squeezed Blood Orange Juice
1 teaspoon Honey
1 Shot of Makers Mark Bourbon (or Woodford Reserve)
1 Cinnamon Stick
Hot Water

In each glass or mug (or styrofoam cup!) combine juices with honey and bourbon.
Add just enough hot water to fill the glass not quite to the top. Serve with cinnamon stick.