Queso Fundido

Day 153: Mario Tailgates Nascar Style

June 2, 2011

Doesn’t everything taste better with cheese? At least that is my motto. My middle child loves queso of any type and since we are trying to get him to gain weight, I thought this would be a great choice of a recipe. The rest of us don’t need to gain any weight, but I am a mom and want to do what is right, so I made him this calorie laden dish…..because I am a good mom….right?

Did you know that there was a NASCAR Style of cooking? I know I did not. Did you know that Mario Batali is an officially licensed NASCAR tailgating cookbook? I was surprised about that one too! Well he must be serious about his NASCAR and I know he is serious about food, so you must know that this cookbook is full of some yummy recipes.

The Ruling: We had a hard time with this one. Our cheese would not blend with the wine and whatever we did, we could not get it to work. I am sure that if we were to make it blend, it would have tasted lovely. The way it turned out for us, we had a hard time even getting it on a chip.

Queso Fundido, page 45

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup white wine
  • ½ pound mozzarella cheese, grated
  • ½ pound Monterey Jack cheese, rated
  • ½ pound goat cheese, crumbled
  • Two 4-ounce cans chopped green chiles
  • ¼ pound cooked chorizo, cut into ½ inch dice
  • 6 cloves garlic, peeled and thinly sliced
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Tortilla chips for serving

 Directions:

  1. In a large saucepan over medium-high heat, bring the wine to a simmer.  Immediately remove it from the heat, and the mozzarella cheese and Monterey jack cheeses, and stir continuously until they are melted.  You’ll need to place it back on the grill for a few seconds to help it along.  (if using a gas grill, reduce the heat to low for this step.)
  2. Stir in the goat cheese, green chiles, chorizo, and garlic.  Continue heating and stirring for 5 minutes.  Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  3. Transfer the mixture to a fondue pot and serve with tortilla chips

 To Joyful, Simplified Living,

 MS. Simplicity

 MS. Simplicity, also known as Melissa Schmalenberger  operates her business as I Did it with MS. Simplicity.  She is a Professional Organizer based out of Fargo, ND and her website can be found at http://www.ididit-fargo.com/.

  • Interested in starting your own Professional Organizing business, visit http://www.mssimplicity.com/ to learn about how Melissa can help you! 
  • Need to contact MS. Simplicity privately, you can email her at melissa@mssimplicity.com.
  • MS. Simplicity offers monthly classes, click hereto find out the latest offerings!
  • For daily organizing tips find the MS. Simplicity fan page here.

 

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Filed under Appetizers, Grill

Father’s Day Grilling Menu

There seems to be a rule that if you are a father, you love grilling. Maybe it is just if you are a man, you love grilling! So what to make for that man who loves to grill on his special day? I have been grilling a lot lately, so I will share with you what I think would be a great menu to show that special father how much you love him! Note to my dad….come and visit and your grandsons will make this for you! Note to my kids….make this for dad as I will be on an airplane flying back on Sunday. I will be sure to make sure my kids read my blog today!

Appetizer: Grilled Shrimp, Scallion and Bacon Quesadillas with Smoky Guacamole

Side Dish: Grilled Potato Salad With Crisp Bacon

Salad: Grilled Asparagus Chopped Salad

Main Dish Chicken: Curried Chicken Breasts

Main Dish Beef: Grilled Steak With Blender Chimichurri

Dessert: Grilled Chocolate Raspberry Burritos

To Joyful, Simplified Living,

MS. Simplicity 

MS. Simplicity, also known as Melissa Schmalenberger  operates her business as I Did it with MS. Simplicity.  She is a Professional Organizer based out of Fargo, ND and her website can be found at http://www.ididit-fargo.com/.

  • Interested in starting your own Professional Organizing business, visit http://www.mssimplicity.com/ to learn about how Melissa can help you! 
  • Need to contact MS. Simplicity privately, you can email her at melissa@mssimplicity.com.
  • MS. Simplicity offers monthly classes, click hereto find out the latest offerings!
  • For daily organizing tips find the MS. Simplicity fan page here.

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Grilled Pizza Dough

Day 152: Let the Flames Begin: Tips, Techniques, and Recipes for Real Live Fire Cooking

June 1, 2011

Have you ever grilled a pizza? The first time we tried it, it ended in disaster! I remember coming home after my husband had grilled the pizza and my oldest son asked if we could order some “real” pizza. Needless to say, our kids were not impressed at our first attempt. That was about 10 years ago and I felt it was time to try it again. I know that people have great success with grilling pizzas, so I knew I had to try it again.

Did you know that grilling cookbooks don’t always just cover the traditional grilling recipes that you imagine. Sometimes they expand to do pizza dough! This is a fun cookbook for those who love to grill as for those who are new to grilling.

The Ruling: We made this with friends on their smoker grill. We grilled the bread and then added some non traditional ingredients, such as pesto and artichoke hearts as well as tomatoes, garlic stuffed green olives and mozzarella. One thing that I loved is that the dough that did not stick to the grill, like I thought it would. Success! I liked the addition of the beer, it added a level of flavor that was unexpected.

EZ Grill Bread with Personality, pg 77

Ingredients:

  • 1 tablespoon active dry yeast
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup warm water
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, plus more for brushing
  • ½ cup beer of your choice, at room temperature
  • ¼ cup yellow cornmeal, plus more for dusting
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more for sprinkling

 Directions:

  1. In the bowl of an electric mixer, stir together the yeast and ½ cup of the flour.  Add the warm water and mix until just blended.  Cover with a damp towel and let stand in a warm, draft-free place (inside the oven with the pilot light on, for example) for 30 minutes, until the mixture is thick and foamy and gives off a sound sort of like soda fizz when you stir it.
  2. Add the 2 tablespoons of oil and the beer to the yeast mixture and mix well.  Now add the ¼ cup of cornmeal and the teaspoon of salt, then begin adding the remaining 2½ cups of flour, ½ cup at a time, to form a soft dough (you may not need all of the flour).  Turn the dough out onto a floured board and knead , adding as much of the remaining flour as necessary to prevent the dough from sticking, until the dough is satiny and slightly sticky, about 8 minutes.
  3. Place the dough in an oiled bowl, turning once to coat.  Cover loosely and let rise in a warm place until doubled in bulk, about 1 to 1½ hours.  Divide the dough into quarters, then form each one into a ball.  Sprinkle a cookie sheet with cornmeal and put the balls of dough on the sheet, then cover loosely and let rise again for 30 minutes.  Or, if you want, at this point you can cover the dough with plastic wrap and refrigerate until about 1 hour before you want to cook the bread.)
  4. Build a multi-level fire in your grill:  leaving one quarter of the bottom free of coals, bank the coals in the remaining three quarters of the grill so that they are three times as high on one side as on the other.  When the coals are all ignited and the temperature has died down to medium (you can hold your hand about 5 inches above the grill grid, over the area where the coals are deepest, for 4 to 5 seconds), you’re ready to cook.
  5. Stretch each ball of dough into a rough circle or rectangle about 1/8 inch thick and 10 inches across.  Brush with additional olive oil and sprinkle with kosher salt, then place on the grill directly over the coals and cook until black spots from on the bottom and bubbles form on the top, about 4 minutes.  Flip the bread and grill the other side until golden and crusty, about 3 to 4 minutes.  Remove from the grill and serve.

 

To Joyful, Simplified Living,

MS. Simplicity

MS. Simplicity, also known as Melissa Schmalenberger  operates her business as I Did it with MS. Simplicity.  She is a Professional Organizer based out of Fargo, ND and her website can be found at http://www.ididit-fargo.com/.

  • Interested in starting your own Professional Organizing business, visit http://www.mssimplicity.com/ to learn about how Melissa can help you! 
  • Need to contact MS. Simplicity privately, you can email her at melissa@mssimplicity.com.
  • MS. Simplicity offers monthly classes, click hereto find out the latest offerings!
  • For daily organizing tips find the MS. Simplicity fan page here.

 

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Filed under Appetizers, Grill, Main Dishes

Toasted Almond Bundt Cake With Raspberries

Day 151: Picnics: Delicious Recipes for Outdoor Entertaining

May 31, 2011

When was the last time you went on a picnic? What is stopping you? It doesn’t need to be fancy it just needs to happen. When my kids were little we would grab some sandwiches or grab a pizza and find a spot in a park. It is more about taking the time to just do it. If you want to make it fancy, you can. I will provide some recipes in the next couple of days that would be fun to take on a picnic. Most food, if you think about it can be taken on a picnic.

But in case you were wondering what to take on a picnic? Did you know that they have cookbooks that are made just on that topic. It isn’t hard to find food to take on a picnic, but this cookbook is a fun reminder of what you can take. You will find more than 45 recipes in this pint size cookbook to help get your picnic brain going.  

The Ruling: It is a dessert….do you think someone didn’t like it. You know better by now don’t you?

Toasted Almond Bundt Cake with Raspberries, pg 78

 Ingredients:

  • 1 cup silvered almonds (about 4 ounces)
  • 2 sticks (16 tablespoons) unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 6 large eggs at room temperature
  • 2/3 cup sour cream
  • ¾ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¼ teaspoon almond extract
  • 1 ½ cups all purpose flour
  • ¾ teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 ½ cups (12 ounces) fresh raspberries, gently washed and dried
  • Powdered sugar for dusting

Directions:  

  1. Heat the oven to 350 degrees F.  Grease and flour a 10 inch Bundt pan.
  2. To toast the almonds, spread them on a baking sheet and put them into the oven for 10 to 12 minutes or until lightly browned, taking care not to let them get too brown or burn.  Remove from the oven to a plate and let cool.  Put into a food processor and pulse until the almonds are just finely ground.
  3. Cream together the butter and sugar in a large bowl until light and fluffy.  Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating after each until blended in.  Add the sour cream, vanilla, and almond extract and mix.
  4. In a small bowl, mix together the flour, baking powder, and salt until combined.  Fold the flour mixture into the egg and butter mixture.  When the flour is incorporated, fold in the almonds and then the raspberries.  Pour into the Bundt pan.  Bake for 75 to 90 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.  (it using individual bundt pans, start checking for doneness after 30 minutes.)  Dust with powdered sugar when cool.

To Joyful, Simplified Living,

MS. Simplicity

MS. Simplicity, also known as Melissa Schmalenberger  operates her business as I Did it with MS. Simplicity.  She is a Professional Organizer based out of Fargo, ND and her website can be found at http://www.ididit-fargo.com/.

  • Interested in starting your own Professional Organizing business, visit http://www.mssimplicity.com/ to learn about how Melissa can help you! 
  • Need to contact MS. Simplicity privately, you can email her at melissa@mssimplicity.com.
  • MS. Simplicity offers monthly classes, click hereto find out the latest offerings!
  • For daily organizing tips find the MS. Simplicity fan page here.

 

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Filed under Sweets

Pappardelle With Meat Ragu And Poached Egg

Day 150: Italian, My Way: More Than 150 Simple and Inspired Recipes That Breathe New Life into Italian Classics

May 30, 2011

Even though it is summer, sometimes we get those rainy days where we need a home cooked comfort food meal. Sunday’s are my favorite days to make these types of meals. Sunday’s are the days that I am more laid back and I am not so rushed. The kids are usually all in one place and I am not playing carpool shuffle.

Those Sunday meals don’t get better than Italian slow cooked food. This cookbook focuses on the basics of Italian cooking, but not the hard parts. Just simple goodness.

The Ruling: Everyone ate it. I served it over wide noodles because I couldn’t find the Pappardelle. I also skipped the part of the fried egg on it. The fried egg would have been fun, but I am not a fried egg fan….so no friend egg 🙂

Pappardelle With Meat Ragu And Poached Egg, pg 111

Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 pounds beef stew meat, cubed
  • ½ cup chopped pancetta
  • 3 onions, peeled and chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 bottle red wine
  • 2 cups cold water
  • 1 cup canned San Marzano tomatoes
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 1 pound pappardelle
  • 4 eggs
  • 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
  • ¼ cup grated Parmesan

Directions:

  1. In a large skillet, heat the olive oil and brown the beef and pancetta.  Add the onions and garlic and cook until browned.
  2. Add the wine and bring to a boil, then add the cold water and the tomatoes with their juice.
  3. Braise for 3 hours, covered, on low heat.
  4. When the meat is tender, mash with a fork and season with sea salt and black pepper.
  5. Bring a pot of salted water to a boil.  Cook the pappardelle until just tender.  Drain, reserving 2 cups of the water.
  6. Place the pasta water in a saucepan over low heat.  Crack the eggs into a small bowl and gently slide them into the pot.  Soft-poach the eggs – this will take about 3 minutes.
  7. Place 3 cups of the sauce in a pan, add the butter, the Parmesan and the pappardelle and toss well.  Season with sea salt and black pepper.  Place onto a platter and carefully spoon the eggs on top.  Serve hot.

 

To Joyful, Simplified Living,

MS. Simplicity

MS. Simplicity, also known as Melissa Schmalenberger  operates her business as I Did it with MS. Simplicity.  She is a Professional Organizer based out of Fargo, ND and her website can be found at http://www.ididit-fargo.com/.

  • Interested in starting your own Professional Organizing business, visit http://www.mssimplicity.com/ to learn about how Melissa can help you! 
  • Need to contact MS. Simplicity privately, you can email her at melissa@mssimplicity.com.
  • MS. Simplicity offers monthly classes, click hereto find out the latest offerings!
  • For daily organizing tips find the MS. Simplicity fan page here.

Leave a comment

Filed under Main Dishes, Pasta, Sunday Suppers, Uncategorized

Grilled Potato Salad With Crisp Bacon

Day 149: Al Roker’s Big Bad Book of Barbecue 

May 29, 2011

I have made a grilled potato salad before and it always surprises my guests. We all have our favorite potato salads that our moms, aunts, sisters or grandmas have made. We may love them with eggs, love it heavy on the mayo or the mustard, or maybe even onions. But grilling the potatoes makes it so exciting! Take that potato salad to the next level.

If you watch the Today Show, you know that Al Roker loves food. He even has produced shows on the Food Network. He created this cookbook with about 100 recipes of food on the grill. There were a lot of choices in this cookbook and gave me a challenge to just pick one. My oldest son while looking at it, said that we should keep the cookbook for a while as he wanted to make many recipes in it.

The Ruling: We all liked it. We liked it so much that my oldest son made it again. He did say that it took him longer than he thought when he made it. So don’t expect it to take a few minutes as it does take time to boil the potatoes and then slice and grill them. Is it worth the effort….you bet!

Grilled Potato Salad with Crisp Bacon, pg 102

Ingredients:

For the Dressing:

  • ½ cup mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil, or other vegetable oil
  • Salt
  • Freshly ground pepper

For the Salad:

  • 4 pounds small (3-inch) red potatoes
  • 6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • Coarse salt, such as kosher salt
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • 6 strips bacon
  • 1 medium red onion, peeled and thinly sliced
  • ½ cup chopped parsley leaves

Directions:

  1. In a small bowl, whisk together all of the ingredients.  Cover and refrigerate until needed, or for up to 2 days.
  2. Scrub the potatoes, put them in a large pot, and add water to cover by about 2 inches.  Salt the water generously.  Cover the pot and set it over high heat.  Bring the water to a boil, then reduce the heat to a brisk simmer and cook until the potatoes can just be pierced by a fork.  The time will vary with the size of your potatoes, but they may take up to 25 minutes.
  3. Drain the potatoes, place them in a shallow pan, and drizzle with the oil.  Roll the potatoes in the oil to coat, season with salt and pepper, and let cool to room temperature.  Cut the potatoes in half, and toss to coat the cut sides in oil.  You can do this several hours ahead of time; let the potatoes sit at room temperature.
  4. Prepare a charcoal fire or preheat a gas grill for direct cooking over high heat.
  5. While the grill is heating, warm a skillet over medium-high heat.  Add the bacon and cook, turning as needed, until crisp, 12 to 15 minutes.  Remove the bacon from the skillet and drain on paper towels.  When it’s cool, chop roughly and set aside.
  6. Grill the potatoes, turning them frequently, until they are well browned and beginning to char in spots. 5 to 8 minutes.  Put them in a bowl, and add the bacon, onion, and parsley.
  7. Drizzle the dressing over the potatoes, toss gently, and serve immediately.

To Joyful, Simplified Living,

MS. Simplicity

MS. Simplicity, also known as Melissa Schmalenberger  operates her business as I Did it with MS. Simplicity.  She is a Professional Organizer based out of Fargo, ND and her website can be found at http://www.ididit-fargo.com/.

  • Interested in starting your own Professional Organizing business, visit http://www.mssimplicity.com/ to learn about how Melissa can help you! 
  • Need to contact MS. Simplicity privately, you can email her at melissa@mssimplicity.com.
  • MS. Simplicity offers monthly classes, click hereto find out the latest offerings!
  • For daily organizing tips find the MS. Simplicity fan page here.

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Filed under Grill, Salads

Week In Review: May 14, 2011

I love doing these reviews as it gives you links to all of the recipes I made for the week in one spot. So did you miss any of my family meal posts from the last week (maybe two weeks ago or maybe a month ago)?  Once again, never fear, as I will give you quick links to them and you too can make some fun family meals this week.  My top two would be the Croque Monsieur as well as the Steak with Chorizo Baked Beans! You have got to make these! Promise me you will make them!

Saturday: Cinnamon Pudding Cake

Sunday: Croque Monsieur

Monday: Steak with Chorizo Baked Beans

Tuesday: Pear Clafoutis

Wednesday: Beef and Noodles in Thai Peanut Sauce

Thursday: Peking Wraps

Friday: Summer Panzanella

To Joyful, Simplified Living,

MS. Simplicity

MS. Simplicity, also known as Melissa Schmalenberger  operates her business as I Did it with MS. Simplicity.  She is a Professional Organizer based out of Fargo, ND and her website can be found at http://www.ididit-fargo.com/.

  • Interested in starting your own Professional Organizing business, visit http://www.mssimplicity.com/ to learn about how Melissa can help you! 
  • Need to contact MS. Simplicity privately, you can email her at melissa@mssimplicity.com.
  • MS. Simplicity offers monthly classes, click hereto find out the latest offerings!
  • For daily organizing tips find the MS. Simplicity fan page here.

Leave a comment

Filed under Week in Review