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  1. Tuesday, October 15

    Easy Homemade Jalapeño Poppers

    When I was in college, I had a co-worker who ate Burger King jalapeño poppers for lunch almost every day. I thought she was bananas. I mean, they were good, in a fast-foody kind of way. But every day? For her entire lunch? She was obsessed! Ever since, whenever I see or eat jalapeño poppers, I think of popper-crazy Lily and it makes me happy.

    easy homemade jalapeno poppers with bacon | from @janemaynard at thisweekfordinner.com

    What I have to share with you today is waaaaaaaaayyyyyy better than the Burger King jalapeño poppers. And, in addition to being incredibly delicious, these poppers are beyond easy to make. The “recipe” comes from my mother-in-law Pat, the source of so many of my favorite easy and delicious recipes.

    I made these poppers with Pat over the summer when the family was all together on Cape Cod. I didn’t get a chance to photograph them very much because there were about 8 people standing around the pan while I shot a few photos. They were like vultures! Okay, so I was one of the vultures who couldn’t wait to get the camera out of the way and dig in!

    easy homemade vegetarian jalapeno poppers | from @janemaynard at thisweekfordinner.com

    If you have latex gloves lying around, wear them when you make these. Pat and I never do, much to our detriment. I rubbed my eyes TWICE within 24 hours of making the poppers and just about blew my eyeball out of the socket. If you don’t wear gloves, just be smarter than me and keep your hands aways from your eyes for about 1 day.

    Easy Homemade Jalapeño Poppers
     
    Author:
    Ingredients
    • About 20 jalapeño peppers
    • 1 8-ounce package cream cheese, softened to room temperature
    • Fresh, shredded parmesan cheese (if you don’t have any, don’t worry about it!)
    • A handful or so of chopped chives or green onions (again, if you don’t have this, don’t worry about it)
    • About 20 strips uncooked bacon, cut in half
    • Vegetarian version: bread crumbs, plain or mixed with a bit of parmesan cheese plus a dash of salt and pepper
    Instructions
    1. Preheat oven to 375 – 400 degrees F.
    2. Cut jalapeño peppers in half the long way. Clean out the seeds and membrane (if you have latex gloves, this is the time to wear them!).
    3. If you are adding parmesan cheese and chives/green onions, mix them with the softened cream cheese. Fill each cut jalapeño pepper with cream cheese, filling them to the top but not overfilling too much so that the cheese doesn’t melt all over the pan. Wrap each stuffed pepper with a piece of uncooked bacon. Place on a large cookie sheet. You don’t need to space them apart too much, so go ahead and pack them in.
    4. If you want to make the vegetarian version, stuff the pepper with the cheese then roll the stuffed pepper in the breadcrumbs, sprinkling a bit of extra breadcrumbs on top and pressing into the cheese gently.
    5. Bake until bacon is cooked. The longer you cook the poppers, the less hot the peppers will be, so if you want them less spicy, cook on the lower end of the temperature range for a longer time. Total cook time will probably be about 20 – 30 minutes.
    6. This recipe is easy going and can be modified to your tastes – feel free to experiment!

     


  2. Thursday, September 9

    Hummus Guacamole Dip

    I am sharing a GEM with you today. My mom got this recipe for Hummus Guacamole Dip from her good friend Jenny, of Jenny’s Green Salad fame. When my mom first described it to me, I must admit I was skeptical. Hummus WITH avocados? Hmmmm….but then I had it for the first time on the Cape this summer. Oh…my…goodness. It is delicioso. The flavors blend together so nicely. And the best part? It’s super duper healthy while also tasting like a very decadent dip.

    I can have this stuff for lunch with some corn chips and be all set. Well, maybe not all set…since it tends to appear for afternoon snack time, and then again at dinner! I also served this at a pool party recently and EVERYONE was asking about the dip…when it was time to go home, the giant bowl was empty. See, I know what I’m talking about.

    Hummus Guacamole Dip
     
    A healthy decadent dip!
    Author:
    Recipe type: Appetizer
    Ingredients
    • Two 12oz pkgs of Guacamole (Jane’s Mom’s Note: of course I NEVER use packaged Guac (she smashes up a bunch of avocados))
    • 1 Pint of Hummus w/roasted garlic (or any flavor you want)
    • 1 15.5oz can black beans (slightly drained)
    • Chunky mild/medium salsa (about a cup)
    Instructions
    1. Mix by hand and chill. Serve with whatever corn chips you like!
    Notes
    Several notes from Jane: Above is the original, official recipe. I’ve actually never used it because I just got it from my mom. I HAVE eaten it and it WAS fabulous. I’ve made the dip blind twice and generally just threw the ingredients together with proportions that looked about right. I believe I did the following, or something close to this. This also makes a lot less if you don’t need dip for an entire army.

    3 avocados, smashed up
    8 oz hummus
    1 can black beans (drained)
    8 oz chunky or fresh salsa
    Salt and pepper to taste

    Mix by hand and chill. Serve with corn chips!

     


  3. Friday, June 11

    Grilled Crostini with Goat Cheese and ‘wichcraft Tomato Relish

    grilled crostini web

    Grilled Crostini with Goat Cheese and 'wichcraft Tomato Relish
     
    Author:
    Cuisine: Side Dish, Appetizer
    Ingredients
    • 1 baguette, sliced int ¼-inch-thick rounds
    • ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
    • 8 ounces goat cheese, at room temperature
    • 1 jar (8.8 oz) ‘wichcraft Tomato Relish
    • ¼ cup fresh basil leaves
    Instructions
    1. Lightly brush both sides of the baguette slices with olive oil. Preheat a Calphalon Unison Grill pan with Sear Nonstick over medium heat. Working in batches, place the baguette slices in the pan and cook until light golden brown and toasted on both sides, about 2 minutes per side. (If you don’t have a grill pan, you can bake in a 400 degree oven for 5-10 minutes, until nice and crispy.)
    2. Transfer to a serving platter. Spread about 3 teaspoons of goat cheese on each crostini and top with ‘wichcraft Tomato Relish. Sprinkle with basil and serve. Makes about 24 crostini.

     


  4. Friday, May 21

    Fruit Dip So Good You Don’t Need the Fruit

    I’ve had this fruit dip recipe up on the blog for ages, but never had a good photo of it. Today I remembered to take a few quick snapshots and I can finally give it the attention it deserves! This fruit dip is one of my favorites recipes of all time. It’s easy. It’s delicious. It makes you want to eat all your fruit…and then some.

    fruit dip final2 web

    Fruit Dip So Good You Don't Need the Fruit
     
    From who knows where…I’m sure half of you already have this one in your recipe box!
    Author:
    Ingredients
    • 8 oz cream cheese
    • 1 seven ounce jar marshmallow fluff
    • Juice from one orange (I’ve substituted with limes for a tangier flavor – it’s great both ways)
    Instructions
    1. Take cream cheese out of fridge and let soften. (This is the hardest step in the recipe. A few times I’ve forgotten to take the cream cheese out of the fridge early enough and it just doesn’t blend well.)
    2. When the cream cheese is soft enough to blend, add the fluff and orange juice and beat the you-know-what out of it.
    3. Serve with fruit and prepare to be transported straight to paradise. Strawberries and green grapes are my favorite with this dip, but just about any fruit tastes great!

    fruit dip ingredients web

     

    fruit dip beaten web

     

    fruit dip final1 web


  5. Thursday, February 5

    Southwestern Layered Bean Dip

    My friend Natalee brought over this Southwestern Layered Bean Dip for our Super Bowl party last week and it was scrumptious. (How’s that for a new descriptive food word? ‘Yum’ and ‘delish’ are used far too often on this here food blog.)

    It’s similar to the classic 7-layer Mexican dip, but a bit different, a bit healthier…and it’s always nice to mix it up!

    Southwestern Layered Bean Dip
     
    Author:
    Ingredients
    • 1 16-ounce can nonfat refried beans, preferably “spicy”
    • 1 15-ounce can black beans, rinsed
    • 4 scallions, sliced
    • ½ cup prepared salsa
    • ½ teaspoon ground cumin
    • ½ teaspoon chili powder
    • ¼ cup pickled jalapeño slices, chopped
    • 1 cup shredded Monterey Jack, or Cheddar cheese
    • ½ cup reduced-fat sour cream
    • 1½ cups chopped romaine lettuce
    • 1 medium tomato, chopped
    • 1 medium avocado, chopped
    • ¼ cup canned sliced black olives, (optional)
    Instructions
    1. Combine refried beans, black beans, scallions, salsa, cumin, chili powder and jalapeños in a medium bowl.
    2. Transfer to a shallow 2-quart microwave-safe dish; sprinkle with cheese. Microwave on High until the cheese is melted and the beans are hot, 3 to 5 minutes.

     


  6. Thursday, August 14

    Featured Recipe: Spinach Artichoke Dip

    I can’t believe I haven’t shared this recipe with you yet. I’m a Spinach Artichoke Dip junkie and I LOVE my recipe for it. This is seriously good dip.


    First, the recipe. Then, a few tips based on my own trial and error.

    Spinach Artichoke Dip
     
    Prep time
    Total time
     
    Author:
    Ingredients
    • 1 cup mayonnaise
    • 1 cup fresh parmesan cheese
    • 1 can artichoke hearts, chopped
    • ~6 handfuls of spinach, chopped a bit then sautéed
    • 4 oz cream cheese, softened to room temperature
    • Splash of tabasco sauce or a few shakes of cayenne pepper
    Instructions
    1. Preheat oven to 350º F.
    2. Mix all the ingredients together in a bowl then transfer to a casserole dish.
    3. Bake for 30-45 minutes, until hot and bubbly.
    4. Serve with corn chips, baguette, fresh pita, pita chips...YUM.

    TIPS:

    – Use FRESH parmesan cheese. This is important for the consistency.


    – I buy quartered artichoke hearts and then just break them apart with my fingers. Saves you from having to wash a cutting board and knife!


    – If you’re making this for yourself and aren’t too worried about presentation, mix the stuff right in the dish you’re going to cook it in. Again, cuts down on dishes to wash! HOWEVER….if you want the dish to look nice, mix it in a bowl first then put in the dish…otherwise you end up with stuff cooking on the side of the dish.


    – Definitely saute your spinach before mixing it in to get the water out. 6 handfuls will seem like a lot, but it really cooks down. If you don’t want to bother with the saute step, just buy canned spinach and use about 1/3-1/2 of the can, but make sure you drain it!

    – This is not the healthiest recipe. If you want, you can use low-fat mayo and cream cheese. But, I say just go full fat and indulge!


  7. Wednesday, January 31

    Crab & Cream Cheese Wontons

    Crab & Cream Cheese Wontons
     
    From Martha Stewart via Emily Wignall
    Author:
    Cuisine: Side Dish, Appetizer
    Ingredients
    • 1 6-ounce package of crab meat
    • 8 ounces cream cheese
    • ¼ red bell pepper
    • 4 water chestnuts, chopped
    • 1 garlic clove
    • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
    • Wonton Skins
    Instructions
    1. Combine ingredients, place in wonton skins (use the directions on the package for stuffing the wontons). Fry. Serve hot.

  8. Cranberry Chutney & Goat Cheese

    cranberry chutney goat cheese web

    Cranberry Chutney & Goat Cheese
     
    From Jane Maynard
    Author:
    Ingredients
    • 1 tablespoon olive oil
    • 1 shallot, sliced thin then chopped
    • ~1 tablespoon orange juice
    • 1 can whole cranberry sauce
    • ¼ – ½ teaspoon kosher salt
    • ¼ cup golden raisins
    • 1 logs goat cheese
    • your favorite crackers or a good baguette
    Instructions
    1. Heat olive oil over medium heat in small saucepan. Add shallots and cook until soft. Add the rest of the ingredients and simmer for a few minutes. Spoon chutney over a log of goat cheese (you’ll most definitely have chutney left over…freeze for another day or make a meal out of it with grilled chicken and rice). Serve goat cheese & chutney with crackers or sliced baguette.


  9. Mexican 7-Layer Dip

    7-layerdip web

    Mexican 7-Layer Dip
     
    Prep time
    Total time
     
    The classic dip we all know and love well!
    Author:
    Ingredients
    • 1 can refried beans
    • 2 ripe avocados
    • 1 small jar salsa
    • ¼ teaspoon salt
    • ⅛ teaspoon pepper
    • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
    • ½ cup mayonnaise
    • 1 cup sour cream
    • ½ package taco seasoning
    • 1 can chopped olives (green or black)
    • 1-2 bunches green onions, chopped
    • 3 diced tomatoes
    • 1 block pepper jack or monterey jack cheese, shredded
    Instructions
    1. Spread refried beans in the bottom of a large, shallow bowl or 9x13 casserole dish.
    2. Mix together the avocados, salsa, salt, pepper and lemon juice. Layer on top of the refried beans.
    3. Mix together the mayo, sour cream and taco seasoning. Layer on top of the avocado layer.
    4. Layer, in the following order, olive, green onions, tomatoes and cheese on top of the previous layers.
    5. Chill and serve with corn chips.