Saturday, February 6, 2016

Texas Bean Dip

Photo courtesy the Cooking Corner.
    Not too long ago the girls and I got together for card night. We all bring a dish, play cards and laugh a lot. Sometimes it gets a little loud, but it's always funny. 
   Since it was getting close to "game day," we all brought dishes to share that had a football food theme. Appetizers and cards just seem to go together. 
   The dish I brought to share was a bean dip that featured some Tex-Mex flavors that was so simple. Most of the ingredients are just your normal kitchen staples. It didn't take long at all to fix and was best right out of the oven, all warm and creamy.
   One note, this is very rich and filling, so a little goes a long way. It's easy to cut the batch in half. Sturdy crackers or chips are recommended since it's a tad thick.

Texas Bean Dip
1 cup sour cream
1 (8oz.) pkg. cream cheese, cut into chunks
2 cans refried beans
1can diced green chilies
1 envelope taco seasoning mix
4 cups (2-8 oz. pkg.) shredded Mexican cheese blend

Preheat oven to 350. Spray coat a 13x9x2 baking dish.

In a large microwavable bowl, place cream cheese and sour cream. Cook in microwave 1 minutes and stir or whisk well to blend.

Add remaining ingredients except 1 pkg. or 2 cups of the shredded cheese to the softened cheese mixture. Stir well to combine.

Pour into 13x9 pan and spread evenly. Top with remaining cheese and bake 25- 30 minutes until cheese is melted and hot.

Serves 10-12.

Friday, February 5, 2016

Crawfish Etouffee'

Photo courtesy of the Cooking Corner.
     Months ago a local restaurant, who has a knack for themed menus, offered a Cajun night. Since that's one of my favorite cuisines, I had to go check it out. The hubby and I sampled shrimp and grits, a low country boil and red beans and rice. One of our sons who also likes to try new dishes and is a fan of Cajun flavors asked us to bring him back some crawfish etouffee'. 
     One Saturday afternoon that same son walked in from a trip to the grocery store with a big bag of raw crawfish. He announced that he wanted to try his hand at redoing the etouffee'. This or any crawfish dish would be a new adventure. 
    Our etouffee, which basically means "smothered" (like a gravy), did not fit the bill for a successful remake. It was too green, too buttery and nothing to write home about, so to speak. 
     It was way too much hassle for what you get, even more so than lobster or crab. So the moral of this story is to buy only the tails that have been prepped. Of course, the other option is to just eat out and let someone else do the crawfish for you.

Crawfish Etouffee'
Recipe courtesy of Rz's Cafe'
1/4 cup onion, chopped
1/4 cup celery, chopped
1/2 cup butter
2 lb. peeled crawfish tails with fat
1/4 cup water
salt and cayenne pepper, to taste
1/4 cup parsley, chopped
1/4 cup green onion tops, chopped

Sauté onions and celery in butter until onions are transparent. Add crawfish fast and simmer 20 minutes. If fat is unavailable, use 1/4 cup butter.

Add water, salt, cayenne and crawfish. Simmer for 15 minutes.
Add parsley and green onion and serve over cook rice.

Serves 6-8.

Note: 2 tsp. lemon juice, 1 T. soy sauce and 2 tsp. minced garlic can be added just after the onions and celery cook for a little more kick.

Spinach Dip

Photo courtesy of the Cooking Corner.
      A zipped up veggie dip is a nice thing to offer at any get together. This spinach dip was one of the options at a recent carry-in at work. There's only a few easy ingredients, it takes very little time and can be made with as much heat as you like.

Spinach Dip
Recipe courtesy Nancy (and Steve) Wilder
10 oz. frozen spinach
1 can water chestnuts, drained and chopped
1 pkg. Knorr's vegetable dip
16 oz. sour cream
1 cup mayonnaise
crushed red pepper flakes to taste

Combine all ingredients, mixing well. 
Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Dipping options - carrots, celery, sliced button mushrooms and crackers 

Taste Of Home Recipe of the Day