Taco Dip

taco dip

Taco Dip

Ingredients:

  • sour cream (about 3/4 of a 16oz container)
  • 16 oz cream cheese (room temp)
  • taco seasoning (I used about 1/2 a package of original taco seasoning)
  • jar of salsa (I used a whole jar)
  • shredded lettuce
  • taco cheese blend

Directions:

  1. In a medium bowl, mix together cream cheese and sour cream until fluffy. Key to this part is the cream cheese has to be room temp! Then add the taco seasoning, to taste, until well incorporated.
  2. In a 9 x 13 pan, layer the mixture on the bottom. This will be your first layer.
  3. The key to this dish is creating layers. Add your salsa in one layer, then lettuce, then the cheese. You can obviously add any other ingredients as well. The more layers the better.

lake day

This is a pic of the boyfriend and I on our way to the lake for the day, so I wanted to make something quick that didn’t need an oven. This was perfect for that and was completely devoured!!

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Stuffed Peppers

stuffed peppers 4

Stuffed Peppers

The boyfriend and I had tacos last night and had some leftovers. Of course, taco meat and taco ingredients can’t go to waste and I didn’t really want tacos agaiinnnn, so I stuffed the ingredients in peppers and baked them. SO GOOD. Who would have thought!?

Ingredients: stuffed peppers

  • peppers (I used red and green)
  • taco meat (I used ground turkey (recipe here) for me and ground beef for the boyfriend)
  • taco seasoning (for the ground beef or in the turkey)
  • chopped onion
  • chopped green onion
  • taco cheese blend
  • taco sauce
  • shredded lettucestuffed peppers2
  • hot sauce (franks)
  • sour cream

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Cut of the tops (stem side) of however many peppers (I used 2) and hollow them out.
  3. Add all of the ingredients to the peppers. I layered the cheese to ensure extra cheesiness!
  4. Bake the peppers for approximately 35-45 minutes.
  5. I filled all of the ingredients to a little above the top and it actually baked down about 1/2-1 inch. I used that space to add all of the goodies, like lettuce and sour cream!

 

stuffed peppers3

Crab Mac and Cheese

crabmaccheese2

Crab Mac and Cheese

Three things I thoroughly enjoy all wrapped up into one casserole…pasta, cheese, and crab. um YUM.

Ingredients:

  • Butter for the pan
  • 12 ounces macaroni
  • 1 ¾  cups whole milk
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 2 teaspoons all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup (packed) grated fontina cheese
  • ¾  cup cheddar cheese (I used white cheddar)
  • ½  cup (packed) finely grated Parmesan cheese
  • ¼  cup (packed) grated mozzarella cheese
  • ¾ cup ricotta cheese
  • 10 ounces Dungeness crab meat
  • 4 TBSP breadcrumbs
  • 2 TBSP unsalted butter, cut into 8 pieces

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 450°F.
  2. Butter a 9 x 13 x 2-inch glass baking dish.
  3. Cook the noodles in a large pot of boiling salted water until tender but still firm to the bite, stirring frequently, about 5 minutes. Drain well (do not rinse).
  4. Whisk the milk, cream, flour, salt, and pepper in a large bowl to blend.crabmaccheese
  5. Stir in the fontina, cheddar, Parmesan, mozzarella, and ricotta cheeses.
  6. Add the macaroni and toss to coat then fold in the crab meat.
  7. Transfer the macaroni mixture to the prepared baking dish. Sprinkle breadcrumbs and place butter pieces on top of breadcrumbs.
  8. Bake until the sauce bubbles and the cheese melts and begins to brown on top, about 15 minutes. Let stand for 10 minutes.

For Next Time:

In order to buy crab meat in the store, I had to buy it by the pound. Well, I felt it was necessary to use the ENTIRE pound in the mac and cheese. DON”T do that. As much as I love crab, I could barely taste the noodles and cheese. That being said, the flavor was still really good! Also, I would probably use less liquid. I found there was way too much so I didn’t even use it all when I added it to the dish. I also would probably top the casserole with more cheddar cheese and bread crumbs.

Original recipe: Northwest Noshings and Ramblings

White Sangria

sangria

Red, White, and Blue Sangria

I had friends over for the 4th of July and wanted to make a festive drink for the ladies. Usually, I’m not a fan of sangrias because they’re often too sweet. However, I stumbled across this recipe and it actually wasn’t too sweet and you could barely taste the alcohol! I’m going to keep making this (without the star shaped pineapples of course).

Ingredients

  • Strawberries, slicedwhite sangria glass
  • Blueberries
  • Pineapple, cut into star shapes
  • 2 bottles dry white wine
  • 1 cup Triple Sec
  • 1/2 Cup berry-flavored vodka
  • 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup simple syrup

Directions:

  1. In a pitcher or punch bowl, comine all liquids and add the fruit. I used three olives berry vodka and sauvignon blanc white wine.
  2. Drink cautiously, this baby is strong!!

Original recipe: BRUNCH at Saks

Key Lime Pie Cupcakes

keylime cupcake

Key Lime Pie Cupcakes

My mom is a fan of key lime pie, so I decided one night I wanted to make key lime cupcakes to bring for dinner. I obviously had to make key lime pie in cupcake form, since cupcakes are probably my most favorite things to bake. These were a perfect summer dessert and a hit at the dinner! I’ll definitely make these again.

Ingredients:

Crust:

  • 1 cup crushed graham crackers
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter

Cupcake:

  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 cups sugar
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 2 tables spoons finely grated lime zest (about 2 limes)
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 3/4 cup buttermilk

Frosting (original recipe):

  • 1 8-ounce package cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 tablespoon finely grated lime peel (about 1 lime)
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Frosting (my version):

  • 1 8-ounce package cream cheese, room temperature
  • 3 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 3 tbsp fresh lime juice (add gradually, taste as you add)
  • 1 tablespoon finely grated lime peel (about 1 lime)
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions:keylime cupcake1

  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
  2. Take your graham crackers and break them down until they are fine. You can either crush them in a plastic bag or pulse them in a blender. Combine all of the “crust” ingredients together and add them to the cupcake liners. Be sure to pack down the crust. I used the bottom of a glass, which seemed to work well.
  3. Whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt.
  4. Using an electric mixer on medium-high speed, cream butter and sugar until pale and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating until each is until incorporated. Beat in the zest of a lime and vanilla.
  5. Add flour mixture in batches, alternating with buttermilk and lemon juice, and beating until just combined after each.
  6. Add batter into liners, filling each to about 3/4 full.keylime cupcake3
  7. Bake for approximately 25 minutes (time depends on your oven) or until a tooth pick comes out clean…this is obviously the official way to check the “doneness” of your baked good 😉
  8. In an electric mixer, combine all of the frosting ingredients. I added more lime juice to the original recipe, because I wanted more of the lime flavor (the zest wasn’t enough). In order to accommodate the extra liquid, I added more powdered sugar.
  9. Garnish with the zest of a lime or a lime wedge.

Original recipe: loveandcupcakesblog