I thought I had dodged all the colds going around the office, I was wrong. I don’t get sick often, but when I do I have to admit I’m kind of a baby about it. This cold could not have come at a better time. This last weekend we had friends over for dinner (the beginning signs of the cold were busting through the surface at this point), we had tickets to see White Christmas at the Kennedy Center on Sunday (full-blown cold, I’m sure the woman sitting next me loved that experience, maybe that’s why she left at intermission…), and deadlines at work Monday morning. Through all this I powered through, that is until 12 pm yesterday when I finally crashed and decided to take the rest of day and today off.
What’s that old saying, feed a cold, starve a fever? I read all these Facebook posts about friends who are sick and lose like 10 lbs because they’re not hungry. Maybe they have the flu, but when I’m sick, I think I get more hungry. Last night Eric and I were deciding what was for dinner, I wanted everything under sun, but ended up having leftovers from our party. All day today I was starving, but of course I didn’t feel like making anything other than a gross can of soup, is that really chicken chunks in there? I tell myself yes, but honestly I’m skeptical.
Enough about my cold, what I really want to share is some of the recipes from this weekend’s dinner party. I didn’t do anything fancy, just something easy, quick and delicious. We had fried currant jelly glazed mini smokies and fried mac and cheese. I love mini smokies especially in this glaze. My aunt Denise used make these for all the parties we had growing up. Here’s what you do:
Currant Jelly Mini Smokies (or Weenies)
1-2 pkgs. of mini weenies
1 jar of Currant Jelly
1 Tbsp. dijon mustard
In a medium saucepan over medium heat combine jelly and mustard. Stir constantly as it comes to a boil and thickens. Add mini smokies and cook until heated through and glaze is slightly sticky. Enjoy!
For our main dinner I made chicken parm, garlic bread, and antipasti salad. I figured this menu was super easy and fast, I was right. I’m not going to post the chicken parm recipe, it’s really simple and basic, any cookbook or online site will have the recipe. The garlic bread was really garlicky, even the leftovers were good. The only thing is that I tasted garlic for two days, even with brushing and flossing, which is pretty gross. Antipasti salad is my new favorite salad, you can add whatever you want to it and it will be delicious, plus it allows you to raid the olive bar at the grocery store which is always fun.
The garlic bread is from Guy Fieri’s cookbook Guy Fieri Food. At first I was a little hesitant to make this recipe because it listed mayonnaise as one of the ingredients. In the end it wasn’t bad, but I’d probably 1/2 the recipe so its not so soggy.
Jimmy’s Favorite Garlic Bread (Guy Fieri Food cookbook)
2 heads garlic
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
3/4 pound unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
1 tablespoon chopped Italian parsley leaves
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1/4 cup grated Parmesan
Pre heat oven to 350 degrees F.
Slice the tops off the garlic heads, place in a piece of foil, drizzle olive oil, and season with salt and pepper. Place in oven and bake for 1 hour, or until soft.
Squeeze roasted garlic out into medium mixing bowl. Add remaining ingredients and thoroughly mix together, divide in half, and refrigerate
sourdough bread, cut in 1/2
8 ounces sun-dried tomatoes, chopped
1 1/2 tablespoons grated Parmesan
Liberally apply garlic butter to bread halves. Bake in oven until light golden brown. Remove and top with basil,sun-dried tomatoes and Parmesan.
Cut into 2-inch slices.
Over Christmas my mom made antipasti salad for dinner. It was so good I was sad I didn’t think of it first. Now for this salad you can add whatever you want to make it your own. I used romaine lettuce, roasted garlic pieces (from the olive/mediterranean bar at the grocery store), roasted red peppers, provolone cheese sliced into strips, salami strips, artichoke hearts, grape tomatoes, and olives. This salad could be a meal in itself, its pretty filling and has tons of yummy ingredients. Most importantly, Eric liked it, which is huge because I really would have thought he wouldn’t have.
Oh before I sign off, I can’t forget about dessert! This one is for my friend Krista, I promised I’d send along ice cream recipes 🙂 I love my ice cream maker, I’ve used it a few times and it has always come out great. I actually lost the little recipe booklet that came with it (I’m bummed because there are some great ones in there.) This weekend I made Butter Pecan Ice Cream. When I make ice cream I usually use lactaid milk but this time I knew I was going to serve it to friends so I went all out with real milk products….you’re welcome 🙂
Butter Pecan Ice Cream (Country Living Magazine)
2 cup(s) Whole Milk
1 1/2 cup(s) Brown Sugar
4 Egg Yolks
Pinch Of Salt
2 tablespoon(s) Unsalted Butter
2 cup(s) Half-And-Half
2 cup(s) Whipping Cream
2 teaspoon(s) Vanilla Extract
Candied Butter Pecans
1 cup(s) Pecans, chopped
1/3 cup(s) Sugar
2 tablespoon(s) Unsalted Butter
Prepare Ice Cream: In a medium saucepan, whisk together milk, brown sugar, egg yolks, and salt. Place pan over medium-high heat until mixture reaches a simmer. Lower heat to medium and whisk mixture for 5 minutes or until it begins to thicken. Strain mixture into a large bowl and whisk in butter until combined; then incorporate half-and-half, cream, and vanilla. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until chilled, about 2 hours.
Prepare Candied Butter Pecans: In a heavy skillet over medium heat, combine pecans, sugar, and butter, stirring constantly for about 6 minutes or until sugar has melted and browned. Remove from heat; spread nuts on foil. Once nuts have cooled, break into bite-size pieces and reserve.
Pour ice cream mixture into ice-cream maker; process according to manufacturer instructions (30 mins for a KitchenAid attachment). Once ice cream’s made, stir in reserved pecans.
I wish I took a picture of this, it was creamy, buttery, and full of pecans, way better than anything you buy in the store. It makes a lot too, so be sure you have a large enough container.
Tonight’s dinner was lame, we didn’t feel like cooking. Tomorrow I think it will be breakfast for dinner, which is my favorite!
Eat well, stay well!