Who’s ready for the big game? I know I am; especially since Carolina is a part of this year’s show! I swear it’s electric around here. Everyone, and I do mean everyone, has a flag, a shirt or a bumper sticker to show their support. Charlotte is ready to kick some Denver butt (sorry Denver fans! I still love you!)….
I’m thrilled to be chatting it up about Birds Eye® Protein Blends today. I’m not sure if you’ve heard about these little gems yet but let me tell you, it’s high time you did. With super healthy ingredients such as lentils, beans, brown rice and veggies they’re a perfect addition to any meal or recipe. So far I’ve tried out the California Style and the Southwest Style. Both were hits with not only the hubby but also the kids!
Now I realize there are a million and one recipes for spinach artichoke dip out there, really I do. But dag nabbit; it’s a woman’s prerogative to have a serious flavor craving and, in turn, follow said craving, all the way to the ooey gooey dip bowl conclusion. You know I’m right because you’ve been there yourself. Don’t try and deny it, we both know better. Allow me to set the scene.
Football lovers rejoice! The Super Bowl is almost here. I don’t know about you, but I look forward to the big game. On top of the fact that its arrival ushers out the long, cold month of January (it’s only 31 days, but I swear it feels twice that long), I also find that it provides me with an excuse to create some seriously satiating appetizers.
I’ve been toying with the idea of a bean dip for some time now. While there’s always freedom to experiment with flavors, a couple of requirements were necessary for this endeavor straight out of the gate:
- It had to be hot because, let’s be honest, hot dip rocks.
- It had to be cheesy because, well, I myself am a bit cheesy (this girl does love her Wisconsin dairy).
- Last, but most definitely not least, it needed to be crudité worthy, therefore satisfying my veggie intake needs for the day.
Well, get ready, because I achieved all three goals and scored a two-point conversion in the process with the bonus addition of protein-charged beans to the mix. The final result is flavorful football fare that will leave you and your guests filled and content.
Kick off your Super Bowl party right by cooking up a couple slices of fresh-cut bacon. When the bacon is crisp and hot, remove it from the pan and chop. Reserving a teaspoon or two of the grease, slide your heat dial to medium and drop in a bit of diced onion and fresh garlic.
Sear it up for a minute or two and then toss in a can of rinsed and drained cannellini beans.
Swirl around the pan for a couple moments allowing them the opportunity to heat up. Dial the heat back down to medium low and stir in a bit of sour cream (light is ok), mayo, and one of the two chopped bacon slices. Transfer the hot mixture to a food processor and spin until smooth.
Finally, drop in a few handfuls of pepper jack cheese, a pinch or two of Parmesan and a few choice flavor enhancers including oregano, Worcestershire and hot pepper (to taste). Add salt if needed and sprinkle the remaining chopped bacon and a little green onion over the top.
Even if your team doesn’t make it to the big game this year, you can be assured that between the clever commercials and the over-abundance of pigskin-dedicated fare, you’ll finish the evening with a satiated appetite and, if you’re lucky, a coveted Super Bowl win.
And if not, there’s always next year.
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Cheesy Bacon Bean Dip
Yield: About 2 Cups of Dip
Total Time: 25 min
2 Slices Bacon
1/4 Onion Chopped
2 Cloves Garlic, Minced
1 15 Oz. Cannellini Beans, Rinsed and Drained
1/2 Cup Chicken Broth
1/2 Cup Sour Cream
1 Tablespoon Mayonnaise
3/4 Cup Shredded Pepper Jack
3 Tbsp Parmesan Cheese
1 tsp Worcestershire
1/4 tsp Oregano
A Few Drops Hot Pepper, to Taste
Optional Garnish: 1 Green Onion, Chopped
Cook up the two bacon slices until crisped and brown. Pull out and chop.
Reserve a teaspoon or two of the grease and on medium heat, brown up the onion and garlic.
Add in the beans and stir around for a minute or two to heat them up.
Turn the heat down to medium low and add in the broth, sour cream, mayo and one of the chopped bacon slices.
Transfer the mixture to a food processor and blend until smooth.
Pour back into the pan and add in the cheeses, Worcestershire, oregano and hot pepper. Add salt if needed.
Garnish with the remaining bacon and a chopped green onion. Serve with crudités and pita chips and/or a hunky loaf of fresh baked bread.
Less than a week until Halloween. My kids are practically busting at the seams with excitement. Nick, my oldest, plans to be Luke Skywalker, Drew is going to be a pumpkin, and my five year old? Well, he’s made the decision to be a marble. But not just any marble mind you – a rainbow marble. I’m sure you’re wondering how I’m going to achieve this feat. That’s good because I’m wondering a bit myself. I’ve come up with an idea to paper mache a rather large balloon, cut out a few holes for appendages and hope for the best.
Summer is all about simple, light dishes and this tropical shrimp ceviche fits the bill. With a handful of ingredients that are merely sliced, stirred and served, it doesn’t come much easier. The flavor, on the other hand, is anything but. The tropical sweetness of the kiwi and mango meeting the meaty succulence of the shrimp, makes for a satisfying snack that will keep you repeatedly coming back for just one last dip in the dish.
I, myself, pretty much consumed half the bowl last night while glued to a riveting episode of So You Think You Can Dance. If you didn’t have the opportunity to watch it, Lady GaGa was guest judging and man, talk about the opposite of simple. From the blue hair, to the red cartoon looking sailor hat, to the two plus foot high shiny red funk boots, she had it going on. I’m not sure what “it” is, but she certainly takes the crown.