Friday, October 21, 2016

BelGioioso Has Won Me Over!

About a month ago I hopped on a plane and flew to Meredith Publishing's headquarters in Des Moines.

 It wasn't my first trip- I'd been there in December as well for an Allrecipes Magazine photoshoot.
These guys are just too good to me, I'm so very grateful for the opportunities I receive!

This trip was a little different than the first though- this was for an Allstars get together.
You know, when I try to explain to people exactly what I do with Allrecipes, and how I found myself affiliated with them, it's a little difficult.

I cook.  A lot.
I use Allrecipes, a lot.
They made me one of their Allstars.
I don't get paid...but I certainly have received my fair share of perks!

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Roasted Beets 'n' Sweets Are Fall On A Fork

I have always always always hated sweet potatoes.

No sweet potatoes covered in marshmallows at Thanksgiving.
No sweet potato fries.
No sweet potato pies.

Just no sweet potatoes in general.

 Well...times they are a changing...my tastes seem to have matured a bit over the past year or so.

I think it was my discovery of the amazing adobo arequipeño at what was (until it closed- sob!) my favorite restaurant that got me to give sweet potatoes another chance.  It was a rich pork stew served on top of a sweet potato mash.  AMAZING.  I am so so so sad that place closed!

Anyway, my eyes were opened.
I've been trying out different sweet potato dishes (sweet potato and black bean burritos anyone?) a lot lately.  I think I've come to the conclusion that I just don't like sweet sweet potatoes.
I'm definitely down with the savory.

Did you know that mashed sweet potatoes are amazing with cheddar in a grilled cheese sandwich?
Dude.  Delicious.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Butternut Squash Soup: Another Score For The Soup File

I don't recall eating much squash growing up.

Correction: I don't think I ate squash growing up.

I remember one time my mom made a spaghetti squash that she bought from our local pumpkin farm.  She said that my dad loved spaghetti squash and so we were all going to give it a try.  I could be wrong...it may have been buttered and seasoned?  But to the best of my recollection it was just a pile of those funny yellow "noodles" on my plate.

Pretty sure I didn't finish my serving.

These days my tune has changed quite a bit and I really enjoy branching out and trying new ways to prepare squash.  It's all new to me actually.  :-)

Do you remember that Spaghetti Squash Pad Thai I made a couple of years ago?
So delicious!  Also super popular over on Allrecipes ever since it was published- 52 reviews and counting!  :-)

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Eggs Benedict Casserole Makes Breakfast Easy

When we have company stay with us I almost always try to make an overnight casserole for breakfast.  It's so much easier to throw something together before going to bed and then pop it in the oven in the morning than it is to prep and cook a decent breakfast first thing in the morning with a house full of guests.

Of course, sometimes I convince my husband to make his famous biscuits and gravy and I'm off the hook when it comes to breakfast, but more often than not I make a strata of some sort the night before.  Most of those "overnight casserole" type recipes tend to be stratas- basically dry bread of some type covered in an egg and cheese mixture with other items added.  They can be sweet- like the Overnight Blueberry French Toast I had on my latest Allrecipes trip- or they can be savory, like the super easy Christmas Breakfast Sausage Casserole I keep meaning to write about.  
Regardless of which direction you take them, they all tend to be fairly tasty and extremely easy to put together.

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Hearty Spinach and Pasta Salad

It's hard to believe there was ever a time in my life when I didn't like spinach- it corresponded roughly with the years I didn't like brussels sprouts.

I must have been out of my mind (or your typical kid, though my daughter loves both!), because both are delicious.

These days spinach is one of my favorite greens to use in a salad- and for good reason.  It's light enough to work as a lovely salad green and hearty enough to stand up to heavier additions- like pasta for example.

Now, I love regular pasta salad.  In fact, it's one of the few ways I really eat pasta.
I can put away some pasta salad!

Which is why I rarely have it in the house unless there is company over to help finish it off, because I seriously can't be trusted with leftover pasta salad in the fridge.

Monday, October 3, 2016

Detroit Hot Honey Wings and Gameday

You've probably noticed by now that I have a slight obsession with game day foods, but chicken wings in particular.  They're fun, they're filling, and they're so easy to dress up with different sauces!
Who doesn't like wings?

Personally I actually like the flat part of the wing better- which is perfect because my husband prefers the drumette, so there's nothing to bicker over.

I've written about a few varieties before- my "Who Needs Buffalo?" sauce (made with Valentina rather than Frank's), White Alabama BBQ Sauce wings (made with mayo and vinegar), Sweet Heat sauce (with Sriracha), even Low Carb Boneless Buffalo Wings with a more standard sauce.

I'm always tempted to try more "out there" varieties- and I'm sure I'll get around to it someday- but my family's tastes are slightly less adventurous than my own.  It's always kind of a toss up whether something weird will go over well with them or not and I'd hate to get stuck eating an entire batch of wings by myself!

Sunday, October 2, 2016

Best Beef Enchiladas

Honestly, I haven't tried a lot of enchilada recipes.

I grew up eating my mom's cheese enchiladas and they have always been one of my favorite dishes.
Why mess with a good thing, right?

Well, we had company coming over for dinner a few weeks ago and I found myself looking for a recipe that would help me use up some of the ground beef in the freezer.  I did an ingredient search and came across a recipe for beef enchiladas.

I had most of the ingredients already and everything I needed for a couple of Mexican side dishes, so I went for it.

The first thing I loved about these enchiladas was that there is ZERO mess.  I'm used to making enchiladas where the tortillas are dipped in warm sauce before rolling.  I scald my fingers and make a big splattery mess every. single. time.