Christmas Party Meatballs

Screen Shot 2015-12-23 at 9.42.41 PM

These are so simple to make and are the perfect start to your holiday party. These can be made with either beef or turkey pre cooked meatballs. If you want them a bit spicier, then increase the chili powder by a teaspoon.

Ingredients:

2 pounds (32 ounces) frozen pre cooked meatballs, turkey or beef

1  12 ounce jar chili sauce

1  14 ounce can cranberry sauce

3 tablespoons orange marmalade

3 teaspoons chili powder

Directions:

In large saucepan, combine chili sauce, cranberry sauce, marmalade and chili powder. Cook over medium heat, stirring until blended. Add meatballs and cook until heated through, stirring occasionally. Serve immediately. Makes 30 appetizer servings.

If you prefer, you can prepare this appetizer in the slow cooker. Place meatballs in the slow cooker first, then combine sauces, marmalade and chili powder and pour over meatballs. Cover and cook 4 hours on HIGH.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Advertisements

Summer Veggie Quinoa

summerquinoa

Everything is coming up in the garden this week! Tomatoes, peppers, all the fresh herbs. This zesty summer salad makes great use of all your garden veggies or what you picked up from the local farmer’s market. It is also low in fat and loaded with protein and vitamins.

Ingredients

3 cups flavored vegetable broth ( I like College Inn culinary broth in Thai Coconut Curry)

1 1/2 cups uncooked tricolor quinoa

1/2 cup coarsley chopped and seeded tomatoes

1/4 cup chopped fresh basil

1/4 cup chopped fresh italian parsley

1/2 cup craisins (dried cranberries)

1/2 cup chopped orange bell pepper

3 tablespoons aged balsamic vinegar

1 tablespoon olive oil

2 green onions, finely chopped

1/2 cup cucumber, finely diced

1/4 cup fresh lemon juice

1/2 teaspoon sea salt

1/4 teaspoon ground pepper

Directions

Combine broth and quinoa in medium saucepan; bring to a boil. Cover and reduce heat. Simmer 20 minutes or until liquid is absorbed. Remove from heat and fluff with fork, then set aside. In large bowl, mix together all other ingredients. Add quinoa and mix well. Refrigerate until chilled or serve at room temperature, if you prefer. This makes 8 large servings – with leftovers!

Southwest Avocado Cilantro Chop Chop Salad

IMG_1869

Happy Spring! I have been absent for a month and I know that is not a good thing for a blogger to do. I recently got promoted at work (yay!) but I am still doing my old job for a while too (insert descriptive and colorful adjective here) so I have been twice as busy at work.  I have still been thinking about food – trying new foods, new recipes and testing my favorites. This is an awesome spring salad recipe – crunchy, filling and packed with B vitamins and protein. It is so easy to make it will be your go to spring salad!

First – Chop Chop:

4 cups romaine lettuce, chopped into 1 inch pieces
1 can of black beans, rinsed and drained
1 large orange bell pepper, chopped into 1/2 inch pieces
1 cup cherry tomatoes, quartered
1 cup corn, thawed frozen or fresh
1 cup jicama, finely chopped
4 green onions, finely chopped
1 avocado, chopped into 1/2 inch pieces
2 cups diced cooked chicken breast (optional)

Next – Dressing:

1/4 cup good olive oil
1/2 avocado
3/4 cup loosely packed cilantro leaves, roughly chopped plus

1/4 cup loosely packed italian parsley, coarsley chopped
1 8 ounce container plain greek yogurt
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
1 tablespoon chopped fresh garlic (I also like Christopher Ranch chopped garlic, sold in jars in the produce section of the store)
1 1/2 teaspoons wine vinegar (either red or white)
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

Directions:

Place all salad ingredients in large bowl. Place all dressing ingredients in a food processor or blender and process until smooth. Toss salad with dressing. Taste and adjust seasonings if necessary. Serve immediately on chilled salad plates.

Summer Tomato Crostini with Whipped Feta

tomatocrostini

Happy end of summer! I love late August – it finally starts to cool off around here (meaning the temperatures finally start to dip into the double digits), and people who have gardens have so many extra veggies they start giving them away. They magically appear in the break room at work and in little plastic bags on your front doorstep- yay! The tomatoes are perfect- they have fully ripened on the vine and taste nothing like those red cardboard globes you find in the produce section in January. This dish is both easy to make and really delicious – and there is no such thing as using too much garlic in it….promise.

Adapted from Barefoot Contessa Foolproof by Ina Garten, Clarkson Potter/Publishers, All Rights Reserved

6 ounces good feta, crumbled
2 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
2/3 cup good olive oil, divided
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons minced shallots (2 shallots)
2 teaspoons minced garlic (2 cloves)
2 tablespoons good red wine vinegar
2 pounds ripe heirloom or cherry tomatoes, 1/2-inch-diced
1/2 sourdough or french baguette, sliced on the diagonal

3 tablespoons julienned fresh basil, plus more for garnish

For the whipped feta, place the feta and cream cheese in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the steel blade. Pulse until the cheeses are mixed. Add 1/3 cup of the olive oil, the lemon juice, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper and process until smooth.

For the tomatoes, up to an hour before your’re serving, combine the shallots, garlic, and vinegar in a medium bowl. Set aside for 5 minutes. Whisk in the remaining 1/3 cup olive oil, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Add the tomatoes, stir gently, and set aside for 10 minutes. Stir in the basil and taste for seasonings.

Place baugette slices on a foil lined pan and set oven to broil for 4-5 minutes.

To assemble the crostini, spread each slice of bread with a generous amount of whipped feta. With a slotted spoon, place the tomatoes on top. Put the crostini on plates and sprinkle with extra basil and serve.