Mini Football Pizzas

I had a fun baseball-filled weekend watching the Everett Aquasox, a minor league team, play on both Friday and Saturday nights. Friday’s game was not very eventful, until the bottom of the 10th when they won 3-2, but Saturday’s game was full of fun, including my little niece catching a foul ball!

0808151910

However, football is upon us, so it is time for some football-themed snacks, like these yummy mini football pizzas from The Daring Gourmet that I made last year during football season. They are a fun snack for any football party.

IMG_20150130_231941_591

I also had Seattle Seahawk themed Jamberry nail wraps for the occasion!

IMG_20150201_123302_566 IMG_20150201_123856_072

Since there were some vegetarians in the crowd, I used meatball crumbles, which were actually pretty good. Feel free to use whatever meat you’d like.

IMG_20150201_161726_303

Mini Football Pizzas

serves

Ingredients:
-1 (11oz) can refrigerated Pillsbury thin pizza crust
-1 (14.5oz) can pizza sauce
-4oz bulk Italian sausage
-1 green bell pepper, diced
-3 mozzarella cheese sticks

Directions:
-Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
-Lightly flour a surface and unroll the pizza dough. Use a football-shaped cookie cutter, or cut the dough into football shapes by hand, according to your desired size.
-Cook the sausage and peppers on medium in a skillet until cooked through, and set aside.
-Spoon pizza sauce onto each pizza crust and top with the sausage and pepper mixture, then bake for about 4 minutes.
-Cut out the mozzarella cheese sticks into long and short strands and lay them on top of the pizzas (check out the pictures). Bake for a few more minutes until the cheese is melted and everything is cooked through.

Advertisements

Grilled Steak & Hummus Mashed Potatoes

Not only have I been blogging every day this week, but today is a two-fer! You can get your grilling on tonight with this Weight Watchers grilled steak and Hummus Mashed Potatoes from Gimme Some Oven.

IMG_20150305_195142_182

I had recently stocked up on some steaks on sale (most of my stories start like that, I’ve realized), because I’m a good wife and I know my husband loves steak…so what do I do? Create a WW recipe out of it. ūüėČ However, this marinade was just delightful! The steak was so tasty and flavourful and great to grill on a spring or summer day (or fall or winter…).

IMG_20150305_195317_489

The mashed potatoes were good too, but I added in more hummus than the recipe called for, and neither of us could taste it at all. They were good, just not good as advertised, if that makes sense. I used different potatoes (I can’t remember what kind though), so maybe the hummus just got lost in the potato flavour. In any case, it was still a successful dinner all around, and hopefully will be for you as well!

IMG_20150305_195347_846

Grilled Steak

serves 2

Ingredients:
-2tbsp chili sauce, or ketchup
-1tbsp packed brown sugar, dark-variety
-1 garlic clove, minced (or 1/2 tsp garlic powder)
-1tbsp Worcestershire sauce
-2tsp mustard, course-grain recommended
1tsp ginger root, fresh, minced (or 1/4 tsp ground ginger)
-2 steaks

Directions:
-Preheat grill to high.
-In a small bowl, combine chili sauce (or ketchup), sugar, garlic, Worcestershire sauce, mustard and ginger, and brush the sauce all over steak. Grill, flipping once, brushing steak with any leftover sauce while steak cooks, about 6 to 7 minutes per side, or until desired degree of doneness.
-Remove steak to a cutting board, cover loosely with aluminum foil and let stand for 10 minutes before slicing against the grain.

Hummus Mashed Potatoes

serves 2

Ingredients:
-1-ishlbs Yukon gold potatoes
-1-2tbsp butter
-1-2cu favorite hummus, homemade or store-bought
-1/8tsp salt (or more to taste)
-1/8tsp freshly-cracked black pepper
-optional garnish: chopped fresh Italian parsley, lemon wedges, extra drizzle of olive oil

Directions:
-Peel the potatoes if you would like, and cut them into large chunks, roughly the same size. Immediately add to a large stockpot and fill with water until the potatoes are covered, then bring to a boil over high heat. Once boiling, reduce heat to medium and simmer for 20-30 minutes, or until a fork-tender. Remove from heat and drain the water.
-Return the pot to the burner and use a potato masher to mash the potatoes until smooth. Then turn off heat, and add in butter, hummus, salt and pepper, and stir until combined. Season with additional salt and pepper if needed. Then top with garnishes if desired.

Skillet Macaroni and Cheese

I had a fun and food-filled weekend (more on that in coming posts!)…and also discovered the British comedy Coupling (which is a far raunchier version of Friends, if you will). My husband, our good friend, and I watched the first two episodes on Saturday night, and I think we are hooked! Well, our friend was already hooked, but now my husband and I are, too.
image

It has also been raining a lot here (welcome to the Pacific Northwest, amirite?).¬†Dreary weather really does call for delicious comfort food, and who doesn’t love homemade mac’n’cheese? Seriously, if you don’t, then we can’t be friends. ;);)

I made this¬†skillet creamy macaroni and cheese¬†by Life as a Lofthouse last month¬†and it DID turn out so creamy and yummy! Mac’n’cheese can be difficult sometimes, but this actually worked pretty well. I decided I didn’t want to overload too much on carbs (please ingore the hotdog bun…at least it’s whole wheat!), so I turned this into a side dish and made our favourite Aidell’s chicken sausages as the main dish. I also got to use the pretty bowls my mom got me! Win-win.
image

Skillet Macaroni and Cheese

serves about 2 as a main dish, 4 as a side dish

Ingredients:
-3.5cu water
-1 (12oz) can evaporated milk
-12oz elbow macaroni
-1/2tsp salt
-1tsp cornstarch
-1/2tsp dry mustard
-3cu shredded sharp cheddar cheese
-2tbsp butter, cut into small pieces
-ground black pepper, to taste

Directions:
-Bring 3.5 cups of water, 1 cup of the evaporated milk, the macaroni, and 1/2 teaspoon of salt to a simmer in a large skillet over high heat. Continue to cook at a vigorous simmer, stirring often, until the macaroni is tender and the liquid has thickened, about 12 minutes.
-In a small bowl, whisk together the remaining evaporated milk, cornstarch and dry mustard. Stir that mixture into the skillet, then continue to simmer for another minute or so, until it begins to thicken.
-Remove the skillet from the heat and gradually stir in the 3 cups of cheddar cheese, just a handful at a time. Stir well until the cheese is melted, then stir in the pieces of butter and season with black pepper. Serve immediately.

Restaurant Style Salsa

Happy early-Thanksgiving!!¬† I decided to post a VERRRRRY easy appetizer/starter recipe for today, in case you are still looking for something to munch on before the big feast tomorrow.¬† And let’s be honest – who doesn’t love salsa? This restaurant style salsa recipe comes from Gimme Some Oven.¬† They are known for some delicious and fairly simple recipes!
image

I made this a few weeks ago for a work potluck, and it was so yummy!¬† I actually doubled the recipe, so that I could have some for my husband and I to enjoy at home – which turned out to NOT be necessary, as the two batches made A LOT…so I am sure that one batch would have been plenty for both work and home.¬† Oh well, ya live and learn, right?

The only bummer: I bought cilantro as the recipe called for it (and I loooove cilantro), I prepped and made the entire double batch, made a HUGE mess in my kitchen (as you can see from the photos), cleaned up said mess entirely, separately packaged each batch in the fridge, and then realized it.¬† I FORGOT THE CILANTRO.¬† Well, let’s just say, I love cilantro, but not enough to make another huge mess in my kitchen, just after cleaning up the first one.¬† In any case, it was still tasty without it, but probably would have been better with!image

Restaurant Style Salsa

serves A LOT (according to the original blog, it yields about 4cu)

Ingredients:
-2 (14oz) cans fire-roasted tomatoes, drained if you like a thicker salsa (I blended my tomatoes in the blender, and only drained one can prior to doing so)
-3 cloves garlic, peeled
-1 (4 oz) can diced green chiles
-1 bunch (about 2 cups loosely-packed) fresh cilantro
-1cu diced white onion
-1 jalapeno, stem removed (and seeded, if you want less heat, and adjust amount to your preference)
-1tsp ground cumin
-1tsp salt
-1tsp sugar
-1/4 tsp black pepper

Directions:
-Pulse all ingredients together in a food processor or blender until smooth, or your desired consistency is reached. Season with additional salt and pepper if needed.
-Serve immediately, or refrigerate in a sealed container for up to 3 days.

Cedar-Plank Salmon with Citrus Glaze & Rosemary Roasted Potatoes

It’s two-fer Tuesday!! ¬†I seem to have a knack for just sitting on recipes for sooooo long. ¬†I should definitely apologize, especially because this cedar-plank salmon with citrus glaze by Feeling Foodish is pretty much AMAZING. ¬†The rosemary roasted new red potatoes by In Sock Monkey Slippers were tasty¬†too! ¬†This recipe dates back to the summer, when I got a huge amount of salmon from Costco for a great deal, along with a pack of cedar planks. ¬†I have officially used all of the salmon – but still have several planks left! ¬†I was told that they are great to use with chicken too, so I may try that!
image

Because I made this so long ago (grumble grumble), I don’t remember exactly how long I marinaded the fish, but I feel like it was much longer than one hour. ¬†It may have been overnight. ¬†As you’re probably already well-aware, if you’ve been reading this blog for even a day, I am a huge advocate for marinading AS LONG AS POSSIBLE. ¬†Though I must admit, I had never marinaded fish before. ¬†But seriously – amazing. ¬†This, in fact, may be my favourite salmon recipe thus far.
image

My mom came over for dinner with my husband and I on the night that I made this.  Everyone at the table was a happy camper!  Pairing the citrusy goodness with the bite of salmon was such a great idea.  And again, the marinade!  So good.  I can hardly describe it.
image

For the potatoes, the rosemary came from a few sprigs I clipped from my mom’s garden – I seriously loooove the idea of going out into the garden to clip ingredients for dinner! ¬†I have been doing that a lot lately with green onion, since we have a TON growing on our back porch. ¬†I’m not a total homesteader like some of my friends, or my brother and his wife, but I’m slowly getting into it a little.
image

Cedar-Plank Salmon with Citrus Glaze

serves 3-4

Ingredients:
For the marinade
-1 orange
-1 lemon
-1 lime
-1tbsp honey
-2tbsp balsamic vinegar
-1tbsp soy sauce
-1tsp ground coriander
-1/4cu butter
-3 cloves garlic, smashed
For the fish
-1/3cu fresh cilantro
-2tsp ground cumin
-2tsp paprika
-3/4tsp fresh ground black pepper
-2tsp salt
1 salmon filet, 2 pounds (I think I only used one pound or less)
untreated cedar plank, enough to accommodate the fish

Directions:
For the glaze
-Zest the orange, lemon, and lime.
-Squeeze juices from the orange, lemon, and lime using a juicer if possible (I don’t have one).
-Combine the juice (about 1 cup in all), zest, and remaining glaze ingredients (honey, vinegar, soy sauce, coriander, butter and garlic) in a sauce pan and heat over medium-high heat until it is slightly reduced, about 10 to 15 minutes
-Allow the glaze to cool and then marinate the fish for 1 hour or more.
-In the meantime, soak cedar planks according to package instructions (usually recommended for 1-2hrs).
For the fish
-Preheat grill to medium temperature (about 350 to 450 degrees).
-Remove the fish from the marinade and sprinkle with cumin, paprika, salt, pepper, and cilantro
-Place cedar planks on top of direct heat and heat until they smoke (about 5 to 10 minutes)
-Flip the plank over, place it over indirect heat, and place the fish on top of cedar plank.
-Cook for about 7 to 10 minutes per inch of thickness (you can use Google to determine how long exactly to cook it, according to the specific thickness and amount of fish you have)
-Turn off heat and let the fish rest on the covered grill for an additional 5 to 10 minutes.
image

Rosemary Roasted Potatoes

serves 3-4

Ingredients:
-4-5 red potatoes (or use new potatoes, as the original recipe specifies)
-1tbsp extra virgin olive oil
-1tbsp fresh rosemary, chopped
-1/4tsp salt
-1/4tsp fresh ground black pepper

Directions:
-Preheat oven to 425¬įF.
-Dice the potatoes into desired size and let sit in water until ready to use.
-Combine potatoes, olive oil, rosemary, salt, and pepper in a large bowl and toss to coat. Spread out evenly on a baking sheet.
-Place in oven and roast for 30 to 40 minutes, stirring once halfway through roasting, until the potatoes are fork tender and golden.
-Sprinkle with a pinch or two of flaked sea salt, if desired, and serve.

Watermelon-Mint Salsa

I vaguely recall promising to post this watermelon salsa recipe several weeks ago…you know…when it was still summer.¬† And here in the Pacific Northwest, it is going back to our drizzling dreariness (kinda love it, not gonna lie!).¬† Therefore, the intrigue of summer food has kind of faded away for many of us.
image

BUT, since when do I subscribe to social norms?¬† I have been known to grill outside in rain and windstorms and go out for tacos (mmm I miss Moe’s!)¬†in hurricanes…so why not post a summer salsa recipe in the fall? ūüėČ

In any case, I don’t have a link for this recipe, as it came from a coupon book I got from Fred Meyer.¬† I made it on a day that we were having company over, I needed to make a yummy appetizer, and we had 1/2 a watermelon gifted to us from my mother that I wanted to use up.¬† I was a bit worried that our guests wouldn’t like it (not everyone is food-venturous), but 4 of us adults just gobbled it all right up! (though I don’t think the 3 kids in tow tried it).¬† It was a wonderful blend of spicy/zesty, with a faint hint of sweet, and great to pair with chips (or top grilled seafood or a pork chop with, or whatever you want!).
image

Watermelon-Mint Salsa

serves 4-6

Ingredients:
-2cu seedless watermelon, diced (I’m not sure how much I used, I don’t think I actually measured)
-1cu cucumber, diced and seeded (I just used an entire cucumber)
-2tbsp red onion, finely minced
-1tbsp cilantro, finely chopped
-1tbsp fresh mint, finely chopped
-1/4tsp hot sauce (I think I added a few extra shakes)
-salt, to taste

Directions:
-Combine all ingredients, mixing gently to make sure they are well incorporated.
-Cover and let chill for one hour in the fridge.
-Leftovers can be refrigerated for several days.

Tropical Orange Appetizers

Aaaaaaand today you get a made up appetizer with a made up name that consists of ONE ingredient!¬† My mom and niece got the idea for this adorable snack from a teriyaki restaurant they recently went to.¬† It was perfect to include at my mama’s Garden Party a few weeks ago, that she hosted for friends and gardening clients (she is a professional licensed horticulturist, as well as landscaper and gardener!).
image

These are super easy to make (though a bit time-consuming, I must admit), but are very cheap – only about $5 for a bag of oranges!¬† I suppose you could say it involves 2 things, if you include the toothpicks (which are NOT edible, therefore can’t be called an ingredient, hehe).
image

I know that summer is almost over, but this is a great addition for any summer party – Labour Day Weekend, anyone?¬† Everyone ooh’ed and aah’ed over them, while gobbling them up, of course. =P

The instructions may seem kind of complicated, so definitely use one or two oranges as a test-orange, and refer to the pictures! Feel free to comment or email with questions.
image

Tropical Orange Appetizers

serves a lot

Ingredients:
-bag of oranges
-box of toothpicks

Directions:
-Cut each orange in half.
-Take one half, and cut off the end, very thinly.
-Cut another thin slice
-Using a knife, carefully cut out the inside of the orange.
-Cut the orange insides into 6 pieces.
-Place the thin slice you previously cut inside the carved out orange and push down to sort of seal it. Then place the 6 pices back inside the carved out orange.
-Take a toothpick and stick it into the carved out peel, and attach the peel to the top.