Archive for » July, 2012 «

Finger Food Friday: Chips and Homemade Salsa

Chips and salsa may not be the first things that come to mind when thinking about New Orleans finger food.  But that dynamic duo and several other south-of-the-border snacks are party and football-watching staples in many homes and sports bars throughout the City.  More importantly, I love chips and salsa.  When I’m happy, I celebrate with chips and salsa.  When I’m sad, I seek comfort in chips and salsa.  And when I’m stressed, I relax by eating obnoxiously large quantities of chips and salsa.  I truly believe I could live off of water, coffee, beer and … chips and salsa.  [ ... ]

Italian Chicken

Okay guys, this Italian Chicken recipe is an oldie but a goodie! It’s a very nostalgic dish that brings me back to when I first moved out on my own. Although I was excited to have my own place, I was not prepared for all the alone time that came with it. Having grown up with two siblings in a neighborhood full of kids with my grandparents literally around the corner and plenty of aunts, uncles and cousins within half a mile, I was used to a full house with people always coming and going. My [ ... ]

Broccoli Pasta

I remember the first time Chandler, my oldest, had fast food.  It was a McDonald’s French fry, delightfully handed to her by the hubby who was driving the family back to Atlanta from one of our many trips home.  Chandler was maybe four at the time.  As she lifted that deep fried salt stick to her lips, I recall quietly praying she’d spit out the first bite and throw the rest across the car in total disgust.  I wasn’t ready for my real-food-loving, avocado-hugging daughter to succomb to the evils of fast, processed imposters.  But as I expected, she L-O-V-E-D [ ... ]

Finger Food Friday: Sausage in Puff Pastry

The hubby and I both come from large families. And it’s not uncommon for family visits to Atlanta to include upwards of 20 relatives at one time. So to take the stress out of feeding that many people three squares times however many days plus snacks, I prepare a lot of food in advance. One of those make-ahead items, one I’ve been making since we first moved away from home, is this Sausage in Puff Pastry. It’s two ingredients–puff pastry and sausage–that bake up into these fabulously flaky pastries. Because the recipe makes plenty plenty, [ ... ]

Loaded Baked Potato Salad

Loaded baked potatoes go great with any type of grilled meat or seafood. But pairing the two on a plate can be a challenge, especially when you’re having to split your time between the kitchen and the deck or if you’re grilling away from home. A delicious alternative is to make this Loaded Baked Potato Salad. It has all the glorious flavors of perfectly baked and loaded potatoes in one easy to prepare and serve dish. Like most mayo-based salads, this one is very good served at room temperature or cold. Loaded Baked Potato Salad Recipe 3 1/2 pounds russet potatoes (about [ ... ]

Finger Food Friday: Grilled Bread with Smashed Avocados and Shrimp

Do you ever notice how some of your best kitchen creations are made on the fly?  Pulled together spontaneously with whatever’s lurking in the fridge or lingering in the pantry?  That’s the story behind this finger food.  Because I hate to waste, especially real food … good food, I was stressed out about using up some leftover boiled shrimp and ripe and ready avocados I had on hand.  My initial thought was to simply toss them in a salad with greens and a lemon vinaigrette.  But as I was cleaning the greens, I remembered that I had a fresh loaf [ ... ]

Muffuletta Pasta Salad

If you’re heading to a potluck this Fourth of July or at any time this summer, break away from boring with my Muffuletta Pasta Salad.  In this recipe, I’ve taken the full flavors of the iconic New Orleans muffuletta sandwich and tossed them with pasta.  Those include spicy cured meats, marinated olives and lightly pickled vegetables (both of which are represented in the one and only muffuletta condiment, Italian Olive Salad), smooth provolone cheese and even toasted sesame seeds–which mimic the bite and earthiness of the round Sicilian loaf on which the sandwich is traditionally served.  If you end up [ ... ]