Hope everyone had a wonderful holiday weekend!! We had some guests in town so I decided to “unplug” and enjoy the weekend. There wasn’t much cooking or baking going on in my kitchen, but I was requested to make these for a party we attended. They were in a head to head competition with a chocolate trifle that I was told was pretty tasty! I wouldn’t know because I was too busy shoveling some sort of cucumber salsa in my mouth to stop for a sweet. If the dessert was anything like the rest of the food that was provided, I’m a little bummed I didn’t check it out. Next time. I came home with an empty plate, and the chocolate trifle was about gone. Win, win!
So back to this cucumber salsa. It was very basic and refreshing and I couldn’t stop eating it. I came home from work today craving some tortilla chips (yum and yum), so I decided to try my hand at recreating the salsa. I added a bit more nutrition with some white beans, but all in all I was happy with the outcome. This salsa is packed full of color and flavor. It’s a great way to use up those cucumbers and tomatoes that might be taking over your gardens right now.
Cucumber White Bean Salsa
- 2 medium-large cucumber, peeled and diced
- 1/2 cup canned white beans, drained and rinsed
- 3 medium size roma tomatoes, diced (add juice to mixture)
- Juice of 2-3 limes
- 1 tbsp chopped fresh parsley
- Salt and Pepper, to taste
1. Combine all ingredients in a bowl. Mix until combined. Season with additional salt, pepper, or lime juice as desired.
2. Serve with tortilla chips.
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Posted in Appetizers, Breads, tagged Appetizer, Asiago Cheese, Beer Bread, Green Olives, Parmesan Cheese, Quick Bread, Snacks, Sun Dried Tomatoes on May 2, 2011 |
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The past few weeks I’ve been so busy I haven’t had time to do much baking. When I do have some time, the only thing I want to do is zone out and catch up on my DVR. The couch sucks me in and won’t let go. In all honesty, It’s not like I’m putting up a good fight though either. The other night I was following my latest routine (shoes off, sit on couch, push ‘on’ button, and swiftly move finger from fast forward to play) and had a craving for olives, cheese and bread. Rather than try to come up with a sandwich of sorts, I turned to my favorite beer bread recipe.
This bread definitely hit the spot! It was dense but soft, with bites of salty olives. Yum! Not a fan of sun-dried tomatoes, simply leave them out and increase the amount of olives. Next time, I might increase them anyway. I think I’ve mentioned my unhealthy obsession with olives a time or two. It’s a little out of control.
Green Olive and Sun Dried Tomato Beer Bread
- 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 tbsp sugar
- 2 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp dried oregano, crushed
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp dried basil or marjoram, crushed
- 1 – 12 oz can beer
- 1/2 cup shredded Parmesan cheese, divided
- 1/4 cup shredded Asiago cheese
- 1/3 cup sliced green olives (about 6-8 large olives)
- 4-5 sun-dried tomatoes, chopped
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Grease the bottom and sides of a 8x4x2 inch or 9x5x3 inch loaf pan.
2. In a large mixing bowl, stir together the flour, sugar, baking powder, oregano, baking soda, salt, and basil or marjoram. Add the beer, 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, Asiago cheese, green olives, and sun-dried tomatoes. Stir just until combined (batter should be lumpy).
3. Spoon batter into the prepared pan. Sprinkle top of batter with remaining 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese. Bake in oven for 35-40 minutes or till golden. Cool in a pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes. Remove from pan. Serve warm alongside some warm marinara sauce. Best if served same day.
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I need more potatoes in my life! I really do! I’m not sure why I don’t eat them more often than I do. Probably because I prefer them in stick form and fried. Not the most healthy but when you find a good fry, it’s so worth the calories! Every last crispy, greasy bite. Good thing for you and me, these are oven roasted (also read as guilt be gone).
While eating these potato bites, be prepared to get dirty. Malt vinegar dirty! Don’t be modest when you make the dip. In fact, tear off a few paper towels and keep them close, grab a starchy bite, and dunk generously. Or if you are like me and are alone or with very close friends (this is slightly embarrassing) put some bites in a plastic bag and pour the vinegar sauce over top, let marinade for a few minutes, and enjoy. This at home pub style fare would make a great compliment to some grilled goodness now that the weather is turning around for us.
Happy Weekend readers!!
Salt and Vinegar Potato Bites
Recipe from vegetariantimes.com
- 6 medium red or yellow potatoes, cut into 1-inch cubes (3 cups)
- 2 tbsp vegetable or canola oil
- 1 cup malt vinegar
- 3 tbsp sugar
- season with salt and pepper
1. Soak potatoes in a large bowl of cold water, 30 minutes. Drain and pat dry.
2. Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Toss potatoes with oil on a baking sheet and spread in single layer. Season with salt and pepper. Roast 45 minutes, or until golden and crisp, turning 2 or 3 times. Season with additional salt and pepper, to taste.
3. Meanwhile, bring vinegar and sugar to a simmer in a saucepan over medium heat. Cook 15 to 20 minutes or until liquid is reduced by half, stirring occasionally. Serve malt sauce as a side for dipping, or drizzle or potatoes.
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Whether you are looking for a sweet treat or a savory appetizer, I thought I would put together a quick list of my favorite things. This list has become my go-to list for any party or get together. I hope everyone has a very Merry Christmas!! Travel safe for those on the road. May your day/weekend be filled with lots of family, friends, and laughs. Thanks so much for stopping by BWB!!
Pea Pesto Crostini – http://bakingwithbasil.com/2010/01/25/pea-pesto-crostini/
- These bite size appetizers are perfect for a holiday party. You can cut the crostini in half to make them easier for guests to eat. And they are soo festive for this time of year! Love those colors!
Avocado Chimichurri Bruschetta - http://bakingwithbasil.com/2010/09/21/avocado-chimichurri-bruschetta/
Deconstructed Taco Dip Bites - http://bakingwithbasil.com/2010/11/01/deconstructed-taco-dip-bites/
- This versatile recipe gives you options to please even the pickiest of guests.
Cheese and Beer Bread - http://bakingwithbasil.com/2009/11/15/cheese-and-beer-bread/
- I have taken this bread to so many places it’s now requested that I bring it. The addition of jalapenos gives this bread a little extra kick!
Spicy Oyster Crackers - http://bakingwithbasil.com/2010/05/13/spicy-oyster-crackers/
Mint Brownie Buttons - http://bakingwithbasil.com/2010/03/15/brownie-buttons/
- These bite sized brownies are not overly minty or sweet. The recipe listed also has a fun citrus zest variation if you aren’t a mint fan.
Amazing Fudgy Brownies - http://bakingwithbasil.com/2010/06/03/amazing-fudgy-brownies/
- Probably the most rich, decadent brownies I’ve had. Make sure to cut them bite size – a little goes a long way for some.
Peanut Butter Bar Cookie - http://bakingwithbasil.com/2010/03/22/peanut-butter-bar-cookie/
- Oh so soft and peanut buttery!
Salted Peanut Chews - http://bakingwithbasil.com/2009/12/21/salted-peanut-chews/
- I apologize in advance for the bag photography, but don’t let that stop you from making these. We make this “pay day” spin every year at my parents – so good!
Breakfast Sausage Bake - http://bakingwithbasil.com/2010/01/04/breakfast-sausage-bake/
- If you have overnight guests staying over the next fews days, try out this breakfast casserole.
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I apologize for the lack in posts lately. Last week was absolutely crazy busy and this week will be more of the same…..which is why I spent hours in the kitchen on Sunday trying to get my fill for the week. It’s amazing how fast time flies when you are in a happy place. :)
A few weeks ago my friend had a Pampered Chef party – of course I bought a few things – and I ended up getting a free booklet of some of their recipes. The idea for these Deconstructed Taco Dip bites came from a recipe in that booklet. I saw cheese and avocado and my mind started racing. I have a slight obsession with taco dips but they can’t have too much sour cream and they must include black olives! Unfortunately I didn’t have any black olives this time but you better believe the next round they will make a perfect topper to these little bites.
Simply said – DELICIOUS!! But then again, can you really go wrong with this combination? The secret is making sure the cheese turns a golden brown before removing from the oven. You want the texture to be more like a cheese crisp rather than melted cheese that was pulled off a nacho chip. There are sooo many different ways to use this recipe. Little tiny taco bites or fajita bites with rice, diced peppers, and guacamole!! Have fun creating and exploring!!
Deconstructed Taco Dip Bites
- 1/2 8 oz block of Colby & Monterey Jack Cheese
- 1-2 limes
- 2 ripe avocados
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tomato, diced
- 1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
- 1/4 cup light sour cream
- 1/2 tsp taco seasoning (more depending on flavor)
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line a large round stone with parchment paper. Cut cheese into 1/4 inch slices, and then cut each slice in half. Arrange on stone about 2 inches apart. Bake for 15-17 minutes or until cheese appears golden brown. Remove from oven and allow to cool on stone for 1-2 minutes. Transfer cheese crisps to a cooling rack to cool completely.
2. Combine sour cream and taco seasoning and set aside. To make guacamole: Peel and seed avocado. Place in a large bowl and mash slightly. Add diced tomato and garlic. Stir together until well combined. Add chopped cilantro and juice from 1 lime. Season with salt and pepper. Set aside.
3. Once cheese crisps have cooled completely, spread a small amount of sour cream on each crisp. Top with guacamole. (I used around 1-2 tsp for each crisp. Use as much or as little as you prefer). Garnish with tomatoes and cilantro if desired. Serve and enjoy!
1. Cheese crisps make a “large” bite. For smaller, bite size crisps, cut cheese into smaller pieces but watch your time. You don’t want them to burn!
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