Jalapeno Popper Dip

Jalapeno Popper Dip
adapted from THIS recipe

2 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1 (4 ounce) can chopped green chilies, drained
2 ounces canned diced jalapeno peppers, drained & chopped
1 cup shredded Italian cheese blend
chives for garnish

Combine all the ingredients above except for chives and mix thoroughly.
Place in baking dish and bake for 20-23 minutes until warmed and bubbly OR place in mini crockpot to keep warm.
Garnish with chives.
** I made this a day in advance and replenished my mini crockpot as needed.

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Warm Spinach Artichoke Dip

Warm Spinach Artichoke Dip

1 cup frozen artichoke hearts, defrosted

1 10oz package frozen spinach, defrosted
2 cloves fresh garlic, minced
salt & pepper to taste
garlic powder
onion powder
1 brick cream cheese, softened
1 cup mayonnaise
1 cup sour cream
1 1/2 cup italian cheese blend

Combine all the ingredients above and mix thoroughly.
Place in baking dish and bake for 20-23 minutes until warmed and bubbly OR place in mini crockpot to keep warm.
** I made this a day in advance and replenished my mini crockpot as needed.

Spinach & Artichoke Appetizer Wreath

Spinach & Artichoke Appetizer Wreath
recipe courtesy of Pampered Chef

2 (8 ounce) packages refrigerated crescent dinner rolls
1 (14 ounce) can water-packed artichoke hearts, drained & chopped
1 (10 ounce) package frozen chopped spinach, thawed and well drained
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
1/2 cup shredded parmesan cheese
1/2 cup diced bell pepper
1/3 cup mayonnaise
1 garlic clove, minced
1/4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
1 egg white, lightly beaten
2 tablespoons grated parmesan cheesePreheat oven to 375*F. In bowl, combine artichokes, spinach, mozzarella cheese, feta cheese(or Parmesan, red bell pepper, mayonnaise, garlic and black pepper. Mix well. Set aside.

Unroll the 2 packages of crescent rolls onto work surface. Separate into 16 triangles in a circle on a large round pizza pan(or baking stone) with wide ends 3″ from edge of pan and points towards the outside. Points will extend off the edge of the baking stone or pan(depending on size).


Arrange remaining triangles in center of baking stone or pan; matching wide ends with triangles already in place Points will overlap in the center.


Using rolling pin, roll over seams of triangles where the wide ends meet, creating a smooth surface for filling. Do not seal center triangles.


Using an ice cream scoop, scoop filling evenly over dough in a continuous circle.


Beginning with the last triangle placed in center of baking stone or pan, bring point of triangle straight across filling.


Next, bring point of opposite outside triangle diagonally across point of previous triangle. The filling will show.


Repeat, overlapping points of inside and outside triangles to form a wreath. Tuck last end under first.


Brush top of wreath with egg white. Sprinkle with grated Parmesan cheese.
Bake 25-30 minutes or until golden brown.

Don’t Be a Dip…

I’m a snacker and love snack food & snack portions. One of my fave snacks are dips (preferably involving cheese) with something crunchy. However these days I’ve been trying healthier alternatives to our favorite foods without sacrificing flavor.

Rather than whipping up a spinach & artichoke dip to munch on for lunch, I decided to throw a little spin on it by using a healthier version of the dip to create a more substantial and healthier meal. So for lunch today, I made Spinach & Artichoke Chicken adapting this recipe for Spinach & Artichoke Dip. Rather than using as a traditional dip, I topped boneless, skinless chicken breasts with it and served it with a sauteed yellow squash, zucchini, mushrooms and tomato.


Here’s my recipe for Spinach & Artichoke Chicken:

1 cup thawed, chopped frozen spinach
1 1/2 cups thawed, chopped frozen artichoke hearts
6 ounces low fat cream cheese
1/4 cup low fat sour cream
1/4 cup low fat mayonnaise
1/3 cup grated Parmesan
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
4-6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts

Breadcrumb Topping:
1/4 panko breadcrumbs
1/4 cup grated parmesan

Boil spinach and artichokes in 1 cup of water until tender and drain. Discard liquid.
Heat cream cheese in microwave for 1 minute or until hot and soft.
Stir in rest of ingredients and set aside.
Preheat oven to 350.
On a baking sheet, place chicken and season with salt & pepper to taste.
Top each chicken breast with the spinach & artichoke mixture.
Combine the ingredients for the breadcrumb topping and sprinkle over the spinach & artichoke mixture.
Bake in preheated oven for 20-25 minutes or until juices run clear.

Patatas Bravas

The following recipe was made and shared at my Tapas party. You can read about the event and view links to the other recipes shared HERE.


Patatas Bravas

unpictured
shared at the event by Tricia
recipe from here

3 tablespoons of olive oil
4 large Russet potatoes, peeled, and cut to 1-inch cubes
2 tablespoons minced onion
2 cloves garlic, minced
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 1/2 tablespoons Spanish paprika
1/4 teaspoon Tabasco Sauce
1/4 teaspoon ground thyme
1/2 cup (4 fl. oz) Ketchup
1/2 cup (4 fl. oz) mayonnaise
Chopped parsley, to garnish
1 cup (8 fl. oz) olive oil, for frying

The brava sauce
In a saucepan, heat 3 tablespoons olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic and sauté until the onion is soft. Turn off the heat, and add the paprika, Tabasco sauce, and thyme, stirring well. Transfer to a bowl and add the ketchup and mayonnaise. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.

The potatoes
Sprinkle the potatoes lightly with salt and black pepper. In a large skillet fry the potatoes in 1 cup (8 fl. oz) olive oil until cooked through and golden-brown, stirring occasionally. (Take care when adding the potatoes to the saucepan because the oil will splatter due to the salt). Drain the potatoes on paper towels, check the seasoning, add more salt if necessary, and set it aside.

Getting it all together
Mix the potatoes with the sauce inmediately before serving to ensure that the potatos retain their crispness. Garnish with chopped parsley and serve warm.

Chicken Salad… eh.

With the roasted chicken I made yesterday, I made a chicken salad. I usually do the usual salad with chopped apples, grapes, walnuts, etc… but wanted to try something different. I found this recipe at Allrecipes.com. It was okay – nothing that wowed me. It did make for a nice light meal though… Here’s the recipe for Holiday Chicken Salad from Allrecipes.com:

4 cups cubed, cooked chicken meat
1 cup mayonnaise
1 teaspoon paprika
1 1/2 cups dried cranberries
1 cup chopped celery
2 green onions, chopped
1/2 cup minced green bell pepper
1 cup chopped pecans
1 teaspoon seasoning salt
ground black pepper to taste

In a medium bowl, mix together mayonnaise with paprika and seasoned salt. Blend in dried cranberries, celery, bell pepper, onion, and nuts. Add chopped chicken, and mix well. Season with black pepper to taste. Chill 1 hour.

*Update: Thanks everyone for your comments and suggestions to use curry in the recipe for a bit more flavor. I reached for it and second guessed using it because I didn’t think it would work with cranberries. I should have used it!! Oh well… we live and learn. 🙂 *

Citrus Basil Chicken Salad

Remember that leftover Beer Can Chicken I made a couple days ago? Well today I took the remaining chicken and made a Citrus Basil Chicken Salad to enjoy this week. Here’s the recipe:2 -3 cups cooked chicken
1/3 cup real mayonnaise
2 tablespoons dijon mustard
1 tablespoon Citrus Basil rub
1 cup sliced red & green grape halves
1/4 cup pecan halves
salt & pepper to taste

Place all ingredients in a bowl & combine.