B.A.T.H. Grilled Cheese Sandwich

We were thinking about the b.l.t. sandwich and decided to do our own initial-based sandwich !

Ingredients

  • Sourdough bread
  • Mayonnaise
  • Habanero cheese (we used 3 slices per sandwich, divided)
  • Avocado, sliced (½ of an avocado per sandwich)
  • 1 pound of Oscar Mayer Naturally Smoked Bacon, cooked (you’ll need 4 slices per sandwich and any bacon leftover is great for munching on)
  • Tomatillo spread
    • 1 pound of tomatillos, husks removed and afterwards cored and quartered (halve the quarters if the tomatillo is big)
    • ¼ cup water
    • ½ tsp. kosher salt

Directions

  1. First start off by making the tomatillo spread: Add the tomatillos and water to a blender. Puree until smooth. Take a large skillet out and add the pureed tomatillo mixture into the skillet. Set the heat to medium-high and add the salt in, stirring to combine. Stirring frequently, reduce the mixture until it has a spread-like consistency. Let it cool down to room temperature.
  2. Now you can start making this sandwich. Spread mayonnaise on one side each of two slices of sourdough bread.
  3. Get a large skillet out and set the heat to low. Once the skillet’s hot, place one slice of the bread in the skillet, mayonnaise side down. Use enough of the tomatillo spread to cover the non-mayo side of the bread followed by: 1 ½ slices of the cheese, bacon, avocado, the other 1 ½ slices of cheese and finally the other slice of bread, mayonnaise side facing outward.
  4. We don’t remember how long it took to cook the first side but it couldn’t have been more than a minute or so ! At this point you flip the sandwich over and cook until it has a nice golden brown crust to it. Eat right away !

This turned out really good ! The avocado adds a nice creaminess, the tomatillo spread has a great tanginess to it, the habanero cheese provides a little heat and the bacon provides a nice contrast in texture as well as a nice level of saltiness.

We weren’t paid in any form to promote Oscar Mayer.

Take care everybody !

Poblano-Tomato Soup

Ingredients

  • 2 pounds halved tomatoes (we cored the tomatoes before cutting them in half)
  • 6 garlic cloves
  • 3 halved shallots
  • 1 red bell pepper, halved and seeded
  • 1 poblano pepper, halved and seeded (we used 3 poblanos that were 4 ½ inches long each)
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • 1 cup unsalted chicken stock
  • ¼ teaspoon salt (we used 1 ½ tsp. of kosher salt*)
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground coriander
  • ¼ cup cilantro leaves
  • 4 lime wedges

Directions

  1. Take a jelly-roll pan and place it in the oven. Turn on the broiler and get preheated on the high setting.
  2. Take a large mixing bowl out and add the following ingredients to it: tomatoes, garlic, shallots, red bell pepper, and the poblano. Pour the oil over the ingredients in the bowl, tossing to coat everything in the oil. Take the pan out of the oven long enough to place the vegetables on it, spreading them out as evenly as possible. Stick the pan back in the oven for 10 minutes or however long it takes for the veggies to get blackened.
  3. Once the vegetables are roasted (or blackened as they put it in step 2), place them in a blender (some juice accumulated on the pan during the cooking process and we add that to the blender as well). The vegetables are going to be hot still, so make sure you remove the center piece of your blender lid so steam can escape. Put the lid on the blender after removing the center piece but place a towel (we used some paper towels folded over) over the center so your kitchen doesn’t become a splatter zone. Blend everything until it has a smooth consistency. Once smooth, add the chicken stock, salt, ground cumin and ground coriander to the blender, blending it all together afterwards. Split the soup into 4 portions (around 1 ¼ cup per portion) and divide the cilantro equally between the portions. Serve each portion with a lime wedge.

*We’re not gonna lie, the soup tasted water with the original amount of salt. The additional salt though brought out the flavors of the roasted vegetables.

This was a tasty take on the classic tomato soup. We enjoyed it hot or at room temperature. You’ve got to add the lime juice to the soup ! The soup is tasty without the lime juice but squeezing the lime wedge over the soup adds a great acidic brightness to the dish.

Recipe source unknown.

Take care everybody !

Gussied Up Mac ‘N’ Cheese

We found this recipe in a Southern Living magazine and just had to try it out !

Ingredients

  • 1 (16-oz.) package cavatappi pasta (we used corkscrew pasta)
  • 1 Tbsp. salt
  • ½ lb. andouille sausage, casings removed* (we used a whole pound of Roger Wood brand andouille)
  • 4 cups heavy cream
  • 1 (16-oz.) package pasteurized prepared cheese product, cut into 1-inch cubes (we used original Velveeta)
  • 2 cups (8 oz.) freshly shredded smoked Cheddar cheese
  • ½ cup freshly shredded aged Gouda cheese
  • ½ cup freshly shredded Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
  • 1 (5-oz.) package unsalted kettle-cooked potato chips, crumbled (lightly salted potato chips may be substituted) (we used Lay’s Lightly Salted potato chips)

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Look at the box the pasta came in for cooking instructions and follow those directions for the al dente results, adding that one tablespoon of salt to the water. Once cooked, drain the pasta and leave it off to the side for now (we put our pasta in a sealed mixing bowl so the pasta wouldn’t get dried out or stuck together).
  2. While the pasta’s cooking, quarter the andouille lengthwise. Now take each of the quartered pieces of andouille and slice them into ¼-inch-thick pieces.
  3. Take a Dutch oven out and set the heat to medium-high. Once the Dutch oven’s hot, toss the andouille in and let it cook for 3 minutes or until it looks browned around the edges, stirring constantly. Once browned around the edges, scoop out the andouille and lay it on a paper towel lined plate so any grease can drain off.
  4. Pour the cream into the Dutch oven and wait for it to come a simmer. As soon as you see the cream is at a simmer, turn the heat down to low and stir in the cheese product. Keep stirring until the cheese product has completely melted at which point you can add all the other cheeses in and toss the sausage back in, remembering to continue stirring constantly. Once all the cheeses have melted, turn off the heat and take the Dutch oven off the the stovetop. Stir the pasta in afterwards.
  5. Take a 3-quart baking dish or 12 (8-oz.) ramekins out and butter up the inside(s) of whichever one you go with (we used a 3-quart baking dish). Pour the Dutch oven mixture into the baking dish and top it with the potato chips you crushed earlier. Stick the dish in the oven for 20 minutes or until the dish is bubbly and looks browned. Take the dish out of the oven and let it sit for 5 minutes before serving.

* This is how we removed the casing from the andouille:

We had trouble picking between all the scrumptious mac & cheese photos that we took so we’re posting several but really, is there such a thing as too many pictures of macaroni & cheese?

This is such a scrumptious comfort food dish. It’s creamy, the potato chips add a crunch to the dish. The pasta was perfect for catching all the sauce with. Naturally the andouille brought a ton of flavor to the dish as well. You do have to eat the mac & cheese when it’s hot though or else you’ll only be able to eat a small portion before feeling full.

We weren’t paid in any way to promote Southern Living, Roger Wood, Velveeta, or Lay’s.

Take care everybody !

Melting Snowman Cookies

Ingredients

  • ½ cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 tube (16 oz.) refrigerated sugar cookie dough, at room temperature
  • 6 marshmallows
  • 1 can (16 oz.) white frosting (we used Pillsbury Creamy Supreme Vanilla Frosting) (we’d get two cans to play it safe)
  • 12 pieces (1″ long) red licorice laces or Twizzlers Pull-n-Peel candy (we couldn’t get an inch long one to sit the way it was supposed to but a 3-inch long one got the job done)
  • 24 mini rainbow nonpareil candies (we used M&M’s Minis)
  • 3 orange gumdrops
  • M&M’s Minis (we used rock-shaped chocolate since we didn’t want the same candy being used for both earmuffs and buttons)
  • 1 tube (4.25 oz.) black decorating icing

Directions

  1. Bake cookies:
    1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Take two baking sheets out and line with parchment paper. Take a large mixing bowl out and add the flour and cookie dough to it, beating them together with a hand mixer on low speed until blended. Place the dough on a lightly floured surface, rolling it out until it’s ¼-inch thick. Using a knife, cut out 12 (3 1/4″) wavy round shapes (we didn’t get 12 out of our dough so we probably cut ours too big). Place each shape on the lined baking sheet, trying to keep them 2 inches apart. Stick each sheet in the oven for 10 to 12 minutes or until the edges of the cookies look golden. Cut each marshmallow in half crosswise, placing the cut side down onto each cookie. Put the cookies back in the oven just long enough for the marshmallows to slightly puff up and stick to the cookie, about 1 minute. Allow the cookies to cool completely.
  2. Coat cookies:
    1. Line two rimmed baking sheets with wax paper, placing a rack on top of each lined baking sheet. Place the cookies on the rack. Take a microwave-safe bowl out and add the frosting to it. Microwave the frosting on High in 20-second intervals, stirring afterwards, until the frosting looks pourable but still a little bit on the thick side. Spoon the frosting over each cookie, spreading it out to ensure a complete cover of frosting on the top. Jiggle the rack just a little bit to help any excess frosting drip off. Re-melt the excess frosting that dripped off and re-pour over the cookies if needed. Keep any frosting that’s left over off to the side. Let the cookies dry for 2 hours.
  3. Decorate cookies:
    1. After the two hours have passed, re-melt any leftover frosting. To create the earmuffs, take one licorice piece and stick each end of it into frosting that you apply to each side of the marshmallow on each cookie (Since the licorice was so hard to work with, we just stuck the ends into the marshmallows and we didn’t have to use any frosting. Our licorice did feel like it’d been on the shelf for a couple of years though so we either microwaved it for a few seconds or rolled it between our fingers before sticking it into the marshmallow). With leftover frosting, apply a little to one side of the nonpareils (or mini M&M’s in our case) and attach them to the ends of the licorice. (We found that putting the M&M’s in the front rather than the sides looked cuter.) Cut noses from the gumdrops (depending on the size, each drop was cut into 1/8 or 1/16) and attach them to the face using excess frosting (we were able to just insert them into the marshmallow without using frosting). Attach the buttons to the body with frosting as well (the rocks were just pressed in and they settled nicely). Using the icing, pipe on the arms, eyes, and mouths.

This is what the licorice looked like after an hour or so:

We were really proud of how these turned out. Instead of looking terrible, these cookies looked scrumptiously cute ! The one downside to these cookies was that after an hour, the licorice popped out. To avoid the situation, you can either not use earmuffs on the melted snowman or draw a line on the cookie connecting the two nonpareil candies together. If nothing else when it comes to decorating the snowman, you can choose to follow the suggested candies or go your own route and pick whichever candies sound delicious to you !

We got this recipe from a Woman’s World magazine.

We weren’t paid in any form to mention Pillsbury, Twizzlers, M&M’s or Woman’s World.

Take care everybody !

Cranberry Apple Crisp

Ingredients

  • 5 cups sliced, peeled apples (we used Granny Smith) (we sliced our apples ¼ inch thick)
  • 1 ½ cups fresh or frozen chopped cranberries (we used fresh cranberries) (we just sliced the cranberries in half)
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 cup quick-cooking rolled oats
  • ½ cup firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup flour
  • ¼ cup margarine or butter (we used margarine)
  • ½ cup chopped nuts (we used walnuts)
  • Whipped cream (optional)

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Take a 12 x 8-inch (2 quart) baking dish out and grease the inside of it (we used nonstick cooking spray). In a large mixing bowl, add the apples, cranberries, sugar, 2 tablespoons flour and the cinnamon to it, stirring to combine. Spoon the mixture into the greased baking dish.
  2. In a small mixing bowl, stir together the rolled oars, brown sugar, and 1/3 cup of flour. Toss the margarine into the small mixing and using either a pastry blender or a fork (we used a fork), cut the margarine into the flour mixture until it looks like it’s turned into small crumbles. Mix the nuts in with the butter mixture and you’ve got your crumble mixture ! Sprinkle the crumble mixture evenly over the fruit in the baking dish and stick the baking dish in the oven.
  3. Let the crisp cook in the oven for 30 to 40 minutes or until the crumble mixture looks golden brown and the apples are tender. Serve the crisp with the whipped cream if you’d like (we didn’t).

This is a scrumptious dessert ! The crumble on top provides such a nice crunchy contrast against the soft cranberries and apple slices. There’s sweetness in the dish with some tartness. The tartness from the cranberries helps keep the sweetness from becoming overwhelming. The toasted walnuts bring a savoriness and you taste the cinnamon without it being overpowering. We’ve also found that this dish is delicious warm but is also great cold !

Recipe source unknown.

Take care everybody !

Easy Healthier Crockpot Butter Chicken

Ingredients

  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breast (we used tenderloin pieces), cut into bite-size chunks
  • ½ onion, finely minced (we used a yellow onion)
  • 2 Tbsp. butter (we used unsalted butter)
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced or grated (we minced)
  • 1 Tbsp. freshly grated ginger
  • 2 tsp. curry powder
  • 1-2 tsp. curry paste (we used Thai Red Curry paste)
  • 2 Tbsp. garam masala
  • ½ -1 tsp. turmeric
  • 1 tsp. cayenne pepper
  • ¼ tsp. salt (we used kosher salt)
  • 1 (6-oz.) can tomato paste
  • 1 (14-oz.) can coconut milk, regular or lite, plus more if needed to thin the sauce (we didn’t need any extra milk) (we used Thai Kitchen regular)
  • ½ cup Greek yogurt (we used 0% Chobani plain Greek yogurt)
  • ¼ cup half-and-half or heavy cream (we used heavy cream)
  • Cooked white rice, for serving (we used brown rice)
  • Fresh homemade Naan, for scooping (we used store-bought Garlic Naan bread)

Directions

  1. Using a large glass measuring cup or bowl (we used a bowl), combine the coconut milk, Greek yogurt and cream together first before mixing in the tomato paste, garlic, ginger and the other spices.
  2. Take a crockpot (we used our 4-qt. round slow cooker) and spray the inside of it with cooking spray or grease the inside of it with olive oil (we greased the inside with extra-virgin olive oil). Spread the onion out over the bottom before adding in the chicken. Pour the coconut milk mixture over the chicken, making sure that all of the chicken gets completely covered with the mixture. Slice the butter into 6 pieces and lay it out over the coconut milk mixture, putting the lid on the slow cooker afterwards. You can either cook on HIGH for 4 hours or on LOW for 6 to 8 hours (we cooked ours on LOW). After the cook time is up, stir the mixture around, take a taste and season with salt and pepper if you want to. Serve the butter chicken over the rice along with a big piece of Naan bread.

This packs a lot of flavor, the heat creeps up on you (it might not hurt to make sure you’ve got something to drink nearby). This is a very saucy dish so it’s nice having the Naan bread there to scoop up the sauce with.

Recipe source unknown.

We weren’t paid in any form to promote Crock-pot, Thai Kitchen or Chobani.

Take care everybody !

No new episode of The Walking Dead

It’s the first Sunday after the mid-season finale of The Walking Dead and after what happened during that episode, it’s feeling like a long couple of months before we get a new episode again. Until then, we’re rewatching the series from the very beginning. After the mid-season finale, it makes us look at the old episodes differently !

Take care everybody !