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Finger Food Friday: Chocolate Chip Cookies

I know I sound like a broken record when I talk about how I’m not a baker and don’t really enjoy the process. On the rare occasions when I do bake, however, I expect those items to be the best they can be. When it comes to chocolate chip cookies (the number one sweet finger food in this house), the best of the best in my book are ones with crispy exteriors and chewy, borderline cakey, interiors. I’ve been working on this recipe for years and I think I’ve finally got it exactly where I want it–just in time for [ ... ]

Finger Food Friday: Creole Ranch Chicken Ball

I’m counting down the days to 2013 with great anticipation. Although 2012 was a good year, there are a couple of things I’m happy to leave behind. I also love new beginnings and the prospects of better this and improved that. But what I don’t particularly care for this time of year (at least not anymore) are those big New Year’s Eve bashes that involve mass quantities of food, over-the-top drinks, glittery garments and fireworks. Maybe it’s my age or maybe it’s because by the time that event rolls around, I’m already battling [ ... ]

Finger Food Friday: Bayou Bar Nuts

Years ago, when I first started working, I used to make batches of sweet and savory nuts for my co-workers for Christmas.  I’d gift them in decorative glass jars adorned with fancy holiday ribbons.  It was an easy and economical way for me to give a little something to a lot people.  For the life of me, I can’t find that recipe.  Maybe it’s all for the better.  Because, as I recall, it was edgy.  The initial bite was a super-sweet sugary, cinnamon rush followed by a brief pause of plain toasted nuts and then an onslaught of extreme heat–from [ ... ]

Finger Food Friday: Roasted Garlic and Red Bean Hummus

Most New Orleanians are traditionalists when it comes to red beans.  They fix them one way and one way only–cooked down for several hours in a large pot of water with the Holy Trinity (onions, celery and green bell pepper) and various types of pork.  The beans are served over rice and the dish is usually reserved for Mondays, which long ago were wash days. I’m all about tradition and love my Red Beans and Rice. But I’ve come to learn that there’s more than one way to cook them. My favorite, non-traditional red bean dish is this Roasted [ ... ]

Finger Food Friday: Party Cheese Ball

There is no Party Cheese Ball in my recipe lineage. Lots of other wonderful family food. But no cheese ball. The only kind I ate as a kid was the prepackaged, almond coated ones from Hickory Farms. Do you remember Hickory Farms? Their stores and kiosks used to rock the malls during the holidays with all those fancy (or so I thought) summer sausage and cheese gift boxes. Maybe they still do. Just not around here. How would I know? I don’t mall shop. Anyway, growing up I never [ ... ]

Canned Biscuit Donuts

Have you ever made canned biscuit donuts?  It’s a fun, semi-homemade way to make donuts.  We’re planning on making them tomorrow morning for Christmas breakfast.  I’ll probably set up the fryer and make the icings sometime today.  So tomorrow, when the grumbling of the kids’ hungry bellies finally overcomes the excitement of Santa’s arrival, I’ll be ready to roll. These donuts can be eaten plain or decorated any which way.  I’ve included quick recipes for vanilla and chocolate icings.  The donuts are also good coated in cinnamon sugar.  But my youngest, Blair, and the hubby insist they’re best dusted with powdered [ ... ]

Halloween: Toasted Pumpkin Seeds

One of my favorite Halloween traditions is bringing the kids to the pumpkin patch to pick out the one that has the best jack-o’-lantern-potential. Mind you this is no easy task, which is why we generally end up transporting three or four worthy candidates back to the house for consideration. Our pumpkin preferences read like a page out of Goldilocks and the Three Bears. My oldest daughter Chandler is always attracted to the largest pumpkin on the lot. But around here, those babies are way too big to fit in the family vehicle (thank God). [ ... ]
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Peanut Butter Balls

My children arrive home from school around four o’clock in the afternoon tired and famished.  And every afternoon, I’m faced with the same challenges:  homework (there’s way too much of it), playtime (there’s never enough of it) and snacks (there are only so many satisfying and appealing options that won’t interfere with dinner).  Enter Peanut Butter Balls.  While these perfectly portioned, outrageously enjoyable treats won’t lighten the heavy homework load or extend play time, they will give my kids the extra kick they need to complete their assignments and enjoy a big game of hide-and-go-seek-tag.  A couple of these hearty [ ... ]
Category: Desserts, Snacks  Tags: ,  One Comment
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