Monday, January 25, 2016

Playoff Pudding Parfaits

Unless the Saints or LSU is playing, I usually don't care about watching football games. Football parties are just a fun excuse for me to have yummy snacks and drinks with friends. I came up with this super cute and easy recipe as an entry for All You Magazine's Game Day Dessert Contest and I was so excited when I found out I won second place- the prize was $250 and a chance to be featured in the magazine! I got my prize money in the mail but never received the magazine. After searching every store in the area, I wrote to them only to find out the magazine is no longer in print. Booooo. So, if they won't share it with you- I will! Here's my Playoff Pudding Parfaits:
 Prepare one 3.9 ounce box instant chocolate pudding as directed on the package and divide the mixture between 6 small parfait cups.  Place in the fridge to chill.

Place 1 cup shredded coconut in a zip top sandwich bag with 5 drops of green food coloring.  Zip the bag closed and shake and mash it until the food coloring is evenly distributed.

Place 6 chocolate sandwich cookies in a separate zip top sandwich bag and mash with a rolling pin until crumbled. 

Using a cookie cutter, or by tracing a paper stencil, cut out 6 goal posts from 2 large flour tortillas.  Place the cutouts on a cookie sheet and toast in a toaster oven until crisp (about 3-5 minutes).  Once the cutouts are crisp, spray with yellow edible food color mist (easily found at most craft and grocery stores). 

To assemble parfaits, top each pudding cup with mashed chocolate cookie crumbs, then colored coconut.  Stick a goal post cutout in the cups and place a football pretzel or chocolate candy on top.

These can be made ahead and stored in the fridge or served immediately. 

I could also use a little help on another entry of mine. If you have a moment, please go vote for my entry HERE
My Citrus Roasted Beet and Ricotta Toast can be voted on each day through Thursday!


Sunday, January 17, 2016

Pass The Pigskin Cheese Spread

When I saw that Just A Pinch recipe website was hosting a "Sporty Snack Showdown" recipe contest, I knew exactly what my entry would be! I piled my favorite ingredients together (artichokes, garlic, olives and cream cheese) into a delicious cheese ball, shaped it into a football and rolled it in bacon. It's so easy to make, can be made ahead of time and is the perfect centerpiece for your next football party! 
Pass The Pigskin Cheese Spread
 8 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
1 clove garlic, minced
1 teaspoon Montreal style steak seasoning
1 14-ounce can artichoke hearts, drained and chopped
1/3 cup chopped black olives
4 ounces shredded Monterey Jack cheese
1/3 cup chopped tomato
½ cup chopped cilantro
¼ cup plus 1 Tablespoon mayonnaise
12 ounces cooked bacon
Assorted crackers, chips, baguette or crudité for serving.

In a medium mixing bowl stir together the cream cheese, garlic, steak seasoning, artichokes, olives, Monterey Jack cheese, tomato, cilantro and ¼ cup of the mayonnaise. Once the mixture is well combined, place the mixture in a plastic wrap lined small mixing bowl, and place it in the fridge to cool for at least 30 minutes.
While the cheese mixture is chilling, place the bacon in a food processor and pulse until it is very finely chopped.
When the cheese mixture has firmed up, remove it from the fridge and turn it over onto a serving platter. Using your hands, shape the wrapped cheese mixture into the shape of a football. Remove the layer of plastic wrap and then lightly press the finely chopped bacon into the cheese mixture, covering it completely.
Place the remaining 1 Tablespoon of mayonnaise into a small plastic zip top bag. Using scissors, cut a small hole in the corner of the bag. Pipe the mayo on top of the bacon, making it look like the laces on a football.
Serve spread with crackers, chips, baguette or crudité.
Serves 10-12.

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Mushroom Chicken Marsala Chili

On busy weeknights the best meals are made in one pot, with a manageable list of ingredients while still delivering fabulous flavor. Bonus points for a dish that can be thrown together and then left alone, to simmer on the stove, until everyone is ready to sit down and dig in. I adore classic Chicken Marsala, but on a Tuesday evening I usually don't have time to be breading and browning chicken cutlets while helping two little ones with homework. This delicious chicken chili is the perfect marriage combining the flavors of Chicken Marsala with an easy to throw together, one pot chili. I hope you enjoy it as much as my family did! 
Mushroom Chicken Marsala Chili
4 Tablespoons butter
1 pound ground chicken
1 pound mild Italian sausage
2 large garlic cloves, minced
1 pound baby Portobello (cremini) mushrooms, chopped
¾ cup Marsala wine
2 cans Bush’s Best White Chili Beans in Mild Chili Sauce
2 cups chicken stock
1 teaspoon salt
¾ teaspoon pepper
1 ½ Tablespoons balsamic vinegar
¼ cup parsley, chopped

In a large soup pot, over medium high heat, melt the butter. Add the ground chicken and sausage and cook until lightly browned, about 15 minutes. Add the garlic and mushrooms and sauté about 10 minutes. Once the meat is cooked through and the mushrooms have softened, add the Marsala wine and cook for 3-5 minutes, or until most of the liquid has evaporated from the pot. Add the beans, stock, salt and pepper and allow to simmer for 15 minutes. Stir in the balsamic vinegar, top with chopped parsley and serve. Serves 6-8 people.


This is my entry for Bush's Chili Cookoff! There's still time to enter, so if you'd like to win a trip to New York and star in a video on The Daily Meal, go check it out!