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Finger Food Friday: Tangy Avocado and Feta Dip

My passion for guacamole is similar to my passion for gumbo to the extent that I’m always searching for the best version of each every time I eat out. Granted, I’ve never found the two occupying the same menu (although in New Orleans that cross-cultural thing may occur somewhere). But you know what I mean. Every time I visit a new Mexican or other type of Latin restaurant, I begin my meal with guacamole. And every time I visit a typical New Orleans joint back home for the first time I order some version (usually seafood [ ... ]

Oysters Rockefeller Turnovers

Oysters are extremely delicious this time of year–especially those sweet, lightly briny Louisiana Gulf Oysters. If you’re looking for something impressive and easy to pull together this New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day, try these turnovers. They’re perfectly portioned riffs on the classic Oysters Rockefeller less the time and mess associated with shucking your own. These turnovers can be pulled together quickly with a pint of shucked oysters and a package of frozen puff pastry. They can also be assembled ahead of time and baked just before serving. Oh, and they reheat nicely too. [ ... ]

Finger Food Friday: Creole Candied Bacon

I’m sharing another sweet, well savory-sweet, finger food recipe with you all today since we’re in full holiday mode and I’m sure plenty of you are either hosting parties or searching for creative edibles to gift to your friends and neighbors. This over-the-top bacon will meet both of those needs and many more–new brunch or Christmas breakfast item, creative Bloody Mary add-in, food therapy (or for some it may be bacon therapy), new Santa snack or all of the above. It’s just that good. When it comes to bacon, the first accompanying beverage that comes to my mind is [ ... ]

Finger Food Friday: Individual Pecan Pies

Oops! I revised this recipe on 12.24.2014 to correct an error–the pie shells should remain frozen until ready to bake. Otherwise, the bottoms could end up soggy. Sorry for the oversight! With Thanksgiving less than a week away, now is the perfect time to share this seasonal treat with you all. This is a sweet, festive finger food perfect for holiday entertaining. And, in my opinion, it’s the best way to serve pecan pie. Not only do the individual pies make everyone feel extra special, each serving has that perfect filling-to-crust ratio and the baker never has to [ ... ]

Finger Food Friday: Roast Beef and Swiss Sliders

Growing up, one of my favorite poor boys was a four napkin roast beef and Swiss dressed. Four napkins, because that’s what it took to wipe the gravy trails from my forearms. Dressed, because in my world a poor boy is not a poor boy without a generous slather of mayo and layers of crisp shredded iceberg lettuce and thinly sliced tomatoes and dill pickles I’m not a hundred percent sure when and where the Swiss cheese came into play, as the roast beef-Swiss combo is not a New Orleans standard. But I think Papa, my [ ... ]

Finger Food Friday: Garlic Dip

Garlic dip in its simplest form is a block of cream cheese and garlic. As much fresh garlic as you can stand. Back in the early 1970s, when I first mixed those two ingredients together, I knew I had found a finger food for life. I could devour an entire bowl of that dip in one sitting with the help of nothing more than a bag of chips. Or was it a tin of Charles Chips? Oh, and on those occasions when there were no chips to be found, a sleeve of saltine crackers worked [ ... ]

Finger Food Friday: Cheesy Garlic Bread

Now that football season is here, I know many of you are searching for one or two new items to add to your game-day buffet. I think my creamy, cheesy, garlic bread would be a perfect addition because it can fill a variety of voids. Need another finger food? Cheesy Garlic Bread holds its own as a meatless French bread pizza. How about a bread side to compliment your Creole-Italian themed menu? My recipe’s a tricked out version of the traditional garlic bread accompaniment. In search of a little something to help your guests [ ... ]

Chewy Oatmeal Cookies

My kids have been back in school for only a month now and I’m already struggling with school snacks. Mind you, all three are beyond designated snack times. But to get them through their long days, I need to stash their lunch bags with extra food. Since they have already grown tired of my old faithfuls–turkey jerky, cheese sticks and nuts–I started making one scratch sweet a week. Nothing too over the top. Last week, I made two batches of my Three Ingredient Muffins (I have 3 kids and a midnight-snacking husband; they go fast). This week I jumped on [ ... ]

Finger Food Friday: Crescent City Sin

If you live in the south or have ever done any SEC tailgating, you’re probably familiar with Mississippi Sin or, as it’s called by some, Mississippi State Sin. It’s a devilishly delicious dip dotted with specs of ham and chopped green chiles that apparently originated in the kitchen of some big MS Bulldog fan. Up until a few months ago, I had only heard of this Southern college game-day tradition. Then, while flipping through a community cookbook my mom recently gave me (The 2nd Annual South Area Diversity Cookbook of the USPS), I came across the recipe [ ... ]

Double Vanilla Cupcakes

Last summer, my girls spent many mornings home alone while I travelled around the city caddying (I use that term VERY lightly) for my son in his junior golf tournaments. Although I felt bad leaving them behind, they actually enjoyed their alone time and took full advantage of having the kitchen all to themselves. While I didn’t allow them to cook on the gas stovetop while I was away, they had my blessing to microwave and bake to their hearts’ content. And bake they did! Each day, Brennan and I would return home to find mass [ ... ]
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