Oh Shu Up & Just Eat!

Today I have a few appetizers for you… or, they could just be like you know, television food.  Make a load of this stuff and sit there and binge on your current favorite show. *wipes the drool from the corner of her mouth*

Spinach & Artichoke Dip

 2 fresh artichokes
1 lemon, juice squeezed
1 tsp salt
1 14-oz can artichoke hearts, drained and sliced

1 lb cream cheese, room temperature
8 oz mascarpone cheese, room temperature
2 Tbsp all-purpose flour, sifted
1 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
1/4 tsp fresh thyme leaves
1/4 tsp crushed red pepper
1 Tbsp fresh flat leaf parsley, chopped
1 garlic clove, minced
5 green onions, chopped
Salt to taste
Ground black pepper to taste
1 6-oz pack fresh spinach, chopped
8 slices crusty Italian bread
Extra virgin olive oil (to drizzle)

Preheat oven to 325ºF.


Boil artichokes in 3 quarts water with 1 tsp salt and lemon juice.

Cool artichokes. Clean, peel, remove center “choke” and slice

Follow Dip Preparation steps below using fresh artichokes.


Mix all ingredients in a large bowl, except bread and extra virgin
olive oil.

Coat a large non-stick baking pan with pan spray; fill pan with
mixture. Bake at 325ºF for about 25 minutes or until bubbling and
center is hot.

Drizzle both sides of bread with extra virgin olive oil. Grill
bread on both sides.

Sprinkle top of heated dip with Parmesan cheese. Serve hot with
grilled bread.

Serves 4

Texas Fries

1 bag of frozen steak fries
1 bag of shredded cheese blend
1 package of bacon
1 jar of jalapeno peppers
Ranch salad dressing

Spread the fries evenly over a cookie sheet and bake according to

Line strips of bacon on another cookie sheet and bake until crispy.

When the fries and bacon are done remove from the oven.

Add a thick layer of cheese and jalapenos and crumble the bacon on
top of the fries.

Return to the oven and bake until the cheese melts.

Serve with Ranch salad dressing on the side.

Crispy Honey-Ginger Wings

3/4 Cup Honey
1/4 Cup White Worcestershire sauce
1/2 Teaspoon Ginger
3 Pounds Chicken wings

Mix honey, Worcestershire sauce and ginger.

Grill chicken wings 4-6″ from medium coals, 20-25 minutes, brushing
frequently with honey mixture and turning after 10 minutes, until

NOTE: If you can’t find white Worcestershire sauce, the dark
colored variety can be used instead.

Deluxe Nachos

2 cups Dry pinto beans
1 large Onion
1 Ham hock — Water
1/2 cup Lard

12 Corn tortillas
Lard for deep frying
1 cup Shredded Jack cheese
1 cup Shredded cheddar cheese
2 Jalapeno chiles (or more) — finely chopped
1 cup Finely diced tomatoes
1 cup Finely chopped cilantro

Place beans, whole onion and ham hock in saucepan. Add water to

Bring to boil, cover and simmer 1 1/2 hours, or until beans are

Remove onion and ham hock. Drain beans. Heat lard until very hot.
Add to beans and mash with potato masher. Season to taste with
salt. Set aside.

To make nachos, cut tortillas in quarters and fry in deep hot lard
until crisp. Drain and season lightly with salt.

Arrange tortillas in single layer on large ovenproof platter.
Sprinkle half each of Jack and cheddar cheeses over tortilla chips.

Sprinkle chiles over cheeses. Top with dollops of refried beans and
gently spread over mixture. (Reserve any extra beans for another

Sprinkle with half of remaining cheeses. Top with tomatoes and
cilantro, then with remaining cheeses. Bake at 375F until cheeses
are melted and bubbly, about 15 minutes. Serve at once.

Serves 2-3

Albondigas (Meatballs)

2 tablespoons olive oil
2 cups minced onion, from about 1 large onion
4 ounces roasted garlic, puréed (about 1/3 cup), see Note
About 1/2 cup (3/4 ounce) chopped fresh basil leaves
About 1/2 cup (3/4 ounce) chopped fresh cilantro
1 tablespoon dried oregano
1 tablespoon Spanish paprika
1 tablespoon kosher salt
1 tablespoon freshly ground black pepper
2 eggs
1 cup plain bread crumbs
1 pound ground pork
1 pound ground beef
1 cup grated Manchego or Parmesan cheese
Chopped parsley, for serving

In a sauté pan heated over medium heat, combine the olive oil and onions, cooking the onions until they soften and become translucent, 6 to 8 minutes. Remove from heat and place the onions in a large mixing bowl.

To the bowl, add the roasted garlic, basil, cilantro, oregano, paprika, salt and pepper, stirring to combine. Set the mixture aside until the onion has cooled to room temperature.

To the cooled onion mixture, stir in the eggs and bread crumbs, then the ground pork, beef and cheese, mixing with your hands until uniform and fully combined.

Divide the mixture into 36 meatballs, each about one-fourth cup. The meatballs may be covered and refrigerated at this point up to 3 days before cooking.

To cook the meatballs, heat the oven to 375 degrees. Spread the meatballs out onto foil- or parchment-lined baking sheets, spacing them an inch or so apart for even cooking.

Cook the meatballs until firm and golden and a thermometer inserted reaches 165 degrees, 15 to 20 minutes. Rotate the baking sheets halfway through cooking for even heating and coloring. Serve garnished with parsley.

Serves 10-12


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