cook: Super Bowl Party Favorites

As we head into Super Bowl weekend, I wanted to share some of our best tailgate worthy recipes.  These dips and appetizers are perfect for a group gathering and most can be made in advance/travel well.

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Bacon Popsicles
Bacon coated in brown sugar + chili powder and cooked around an italian breadstick.  These crowd pleasers will vanish as soon as they come out of the oven!

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Spinach Dip
This mayo-free spinach dip can be made the night before and cooked right before your guests arrive.  Serve with tortilla chips.

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Wing Dip
All the flavor of Buffalo Wings without the messy fingers.  This dip is best served with Fritos and of course, carrots and celery sticks.

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Kristi’s Aunt Jean’s Tortilla Soup
This spicy alternative to Chili is easy to prepared and packed a ton of flavor.  Serve with avocado, sour cream, cheese and tortilla chips.

Enjoy the weekend!  We can’t wait to watch the Harbowl!

xo,

Katie

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make: halloween caramel corn

As a kid, the weeks leading up to Halloween were always filled with two flavors: Candy Corn and Caramel Corn. With Halloween only a little over a week away, I have been craving both so this weekend I went crazy and threw them all together. And added peanuts because I also was introduced to the genius pairing of candy corn and salted peanuts this weekend. Mind blowing and totally changes the flavor of the candy corn. If you haven’t tried it, try a few handfuls of each while you are making this. This is my mother’s recipe for Caramel Corn, in my very biased opinion it is the best and easiest way to make this treat.

Halloween Caramel Corn
Ingredients

+ Vegetable Oil
+ 1 /4 cup popcorn kernel
+ 1 cup light brown sugar
+ 1/4 cup light corn syrup
+ 1 pinch of sea salt
+ 1/3 cup unsalted butter
+ 1 tsp baking soda
+ One 11 oz. bag of candy corn
+ 2 cups salted boiled peanuts

Start by popping the popcorn. I prefer to do this in a pan on the stove so use a large sauce pan/stock pot, add enough vegetable oil to coat the bottom of the pan (approximately 1 tablespoon) and place 3 kernels of popcorn into the pan. When the three kernels pop, add 1/4 cup of popcorn. Shake the pan every 30 or so seconds until the popcorn has stopped popping. Remove to cookie sheet or bowl. This should make approximately 6 cups of popped-popcorn.
Next, make the caramel. In a medium sauce pan add butter, sugar, corn syrup, and salt to pan and stir until melted. Bring it to a boil and remove from heat. Add baking soda and stir–it will foam up a bit. Throw in popcorn and mix until the popcorn is fully coated. Add an entire bag of candy corn and 2 cups of peanuts and stir until mixed. You can either wait five minutes and then form the mix into balls or spread it out onto a parchment lined cookie sheet to cool.
Enjoy!
xo
kw
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cook: spinach dip

Yesterday, the temperature in Boulder dropped from 85 to  55 in a matter of hours meaning that fall (and probably the first frost) is finally here.  For years I’ve been in denial about my favorite season.  I love the beach, long days, the leisure and the humidity (what? it’s good for my hair/skin) during the summer but deep down the fall is my favorite.  It makes me want to buy new pencils and roast something, since I can finally turn on the oven without also needing to crank the AC.  And one  of the best perks of the fall is football.  There’s something about spending an afternoon or evening or entire weekend watching games, rooting for your home team and eating delicious food.   With the weekend almost here,  I thought I would share one of my go-to recipes for parties.  I have been serving this  Spinach Dip for over a decade and I rarely tire of it.  In fact,  there was a time in my life where my mother and I would make it for dinner.  Yes, I love it that much.  It’s mayo free, doubles well and can be prepared in advance so all you have to do is throw it in the oven.

Spinach Dip
Adapted from Denver Junior League Colorado Creme de la Creme Cookbook

Ingredients
+ 1 T diced pickled jalapeños (I buy them canned in the Mexican Food section of my store)
+  2 fresh tomatoes seeded and chopped
+ 1 10z. packed of frozen spinach thawed and squeezed dry
+ 8 oz. cream cheese
+ 2 c. shredded jack cheese
+ 1/3 milk or half and half (depending on what you have in the fridge)

Mix the ingredients together and pour into a 8×8 or 9×9 oven proof dish sprayed with non-stick cooking spray. Bake at 400 degrees for 20-25 minutes until bubbly and browned at the edges.  Remove from oven and allow to cool for a few minutes or until the first person starts to dig in.  I serve this with veggies  and tortilla chips. Enjoy!

xo

Katie

cook: strawberry + ricotta bruschetta

 

We are well into the dog days of summer and the very last thing I feel like doing is slaving over a hot stove.  I’ve hit the part of the year where i tend to subside on iced coffee, grapes and popsicles.  It’s just too hot to eat anything else.  this past weekend, I was invited to a  friend’s house for dinner and a movie and knew that grapes and popsicles would not be appropriate tob ring with me.  So I began looking for something that I could make and transport and yet didn’t require me to turn on my stove.  In the end, I decided to throw together these delicious little summer snacks.  Fruit soaked in balsamic vinegar is one of my favorite flavor combinations and these did not disappoint — the key here is to use the best ingredients that you can afford and can get your hands on.

Here is what you’ll need:

+ crusty bread (i used a french small boule)

+ olive oil

+ balsamic vinegar

+ strawberries

+ fresh ricotta

+ basil

+ salt and pepper to taste

start by hulling and dicing your strawberries.  i used about a pint of them to make 1.5 cups of diced strawberries.  then combine with 2 T of balsamic and let sit for 20 minutes.  then slice and lightly toast your bread.    once toasted drizzle with olive oil.  then stir in about a tablespoon of olive oil into your ricotta.  spread a healthy spoonful onto each slice of bread.  top with a healthy spoonful of strawberries.  chiffonade or tear the basil and sprinkle on top and add salt and pepper to taste.

voila. an impressive, delicious and simple summer time treat. i loved them so much, i plan to make these daily for lunch!

xoxo

katie

cook: “Healthy Mac” Turkey and Veggie Pasta

My cousin Clayton, who is studying to be a health coach, sent me an awesome recipe a few months ago called Clayton’s Turkey Tacos. It’s so good, the local news station did a segment on her which you can view here.  I decided to try out the recipe this weekend, but I was craving pasta so I switched the blue corn tortilla chips for glutten free pasta and then added a can of green chillies while I was cooking the turkey. The recipe was super easy to follow and rest assured I’ll be making it again in the near future. Clayton’s step by step recipe can be viewed here. Hope you enjoy my instagram documentation below! Cheers, Kristi

Trying to finely chop the broccoli
Cooking chopped veggies and turkey at the same time

End result = Deelish!