Tuesday, September 3, 2013

1 Sandwich...feeds many

The ultimate tailgate food is a big, hearty, bigger than your head, melt in your mouth, wake up your tastebuds, made a day ahead, MUFALETTA.

It is by far the easiest way to tailgate..one sandwich, cooler of beer, done...plenty of time for face painting at your tailgate! With Fall on the horizon and football in full gear but the weather still warm enough to fire up the grill (or oven) this is the perfect tailgating food.  Make it this weekend and then break out the recipe again in November....your friends will appreciate your mad cooking skills when you bring this to your tailgate party!

This sandwich calls for some amazing meats from the deli....be sure to have them slice everything thin and be sure to stick to the recipe.  If you have never had Mortadella or Capacolla (or Hot Cappi) get it, try it, you are in for a treat!  If you are in a hurry, click the link below and watch me assemble this sandwich (only 3 minutes) and opt for a jar of olive salad instead of making your own.

1 large round loaf of bread                                 
       (sourdough, white mountain, Italian)
1 lb Provolone Cheese, sliced thin
½ lb Hard Salami, sliced thin
½ lb Smoked Ham, sliced thin
½ lb Mortadella, sliced thin
½ lb Cappacolla, sliced thin 
        (can sub, Hot Cappy)

I use Boar’s Head meats and cheeses

Olive Salad to top bread
½ cup olive oil
2 T balsamic vinegar
2 cloves garlic
½ cup pimento stuffed green olives
½ cup kalamata olives (pitted, can be sliced)
2 ribs of celery cut in chunks
½ small red onion
Handful of fresh flat leaf parsley
A few cracks of freshly ground pepper

Combine olive oil and vinegar with black pepper in a large bowl, wisk to combine.
Add red onion, celery and garlic to a food processor and pulse a few times, add all other ingredients and pulse a few more times. 
Add to olive oil mixture, toss to coat.  Cover and refrigerate. 
Best if made a day in advance to allow flavors to combine.

Cut bread horizontally in half and scoop out some of the bread from both the top and bottom to make room for your olive salad.
Put a layer of olive salad in bottom scooped out bread.
Top with a layer of provolone, salami, ham, mortaella, cappacolla and finish with another layer of provolone.
Add a layer of olive salad to the top scooped out bread as well.
Close your sandwich and wrap in aluminum. 
Bake in the oven or heat on a warm grill to lightly melt the cheese.
To serve slice into large wedges and enjoy!

I always have enough meat and olive salad for 2 huge muffalettas!

Sunday, August 11, 2013

It's a Southern Thing....

Upon a recent, very scientific Facebook Poll, I asked friends for the best kind of cheese to top a burger.  Responses ranged from Munster (my favorite ever) to Smoked Gouda (great choice indeed) to Pimento Cheese.  After my husband had his first "Masters" experience this year he also requested the wonderful, soft, spreadable cheese known very well in the South.  My challenge was to create a grilled cheese on the grill using my BIC FlameDisk.  I added some green scallions, parsley and spice to my cream cheese, mayo, sour cream mixture and realized it makes a great grilled cheese or a fancy appetizer.  I give you jalapeño poppers and a Grilled Pimento Cheese Sandwich that would make any Southerner swoon. 

  Grilled Pimento Cheese
             1 loaf sliced sourdough bread                        1 jar drained chopped pimentos   
             1 package softened cream cheese                 1 T grated onion
             ½ cup mayo                                                    A few shakes garlic powder
             ½ cup sour cream                                           ½ teaspoon Worcestershire  
             2 scallions, rough chop                                   ½ teaspoon Red wine vinegar
             Handful of fresh flat leap parsley                    Salt and Pepper
            16 oz shredded cheddar (packaged is fine)

Mix all ingredients together in a food processor (if available)
Or by hand if needed.

Generously spread pimento cheese on one slice of sourdough, 
top with another slice and wrap in heavy duty aluminum. 

Place directly on hot grill for 1-2 minutes per side

Unwrap and enjoy!

Can also add pimento cheese to hollowed out jalapenos….stuff and grill! 

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Horseradish....a key ingredient in Bloody Mary's and this Recipe!

I think horseradish and butterscotch are two flavors that don't get the press they deserve.  A girls beach trip last year introduced me to my first Bloody Mary and the key ingredient horseradish!  More recently, Trader Joes came out with a horseradish hummus that is so amazing I am officially addicted!  Butterscotch....a few haystacks now and then and I'm good but still working on the perfect recipe for Butterscotch scones, stay tuned!  

Ok...so, let's talk about this salad and the fact you can make the dressing in a mason jar (yes, the same mason jar I will feature later this month in a Bloody Mary Bar....and now we have come full circle!)  At dinner in Atlanta a few weeks back I had a delicious salad topped with develed eggs, steak and a lemon horseradish vinaigrette....here is my version.  Perfect for summer, great for eating healthy, easy to make and assemble and no need for a side item because you have your veggies and protein all in one.

This salad would be great topped with grilled shrimp, fish, chicken, even a portabella mushroom...I think it is my favorite "Tailgating Tidbits" recipe this season!

Flank Steak Salad with Lemon Horseradish Vinaigrette

½ cup plain Greek yogurt
1 ½ T Prepared horseradish
1 T Dijon mustard
Juice and zest from 1 lemon
salt and pepper
½ cup olive oil

Put all the ingredients in a mason jar an shake well.  
Taste and adjust seasoning accordingly. 
(Can also do in a bowl, just whisk everything together)

Flank Steak:
Give your flank steak a little splash of olive oil,             
and a generous sprinkle of salt and pepper.  
Grill on smoking hot grill until desired tenderness

Baby argula
Sliced avocado
8 slices crumbled bacon
Blue cheese or gorgonzola crumbles
Caremelized red onion*
8 deviled eggs*

*To caramelize red onion, slice a large red onion 
and sauté in 4T olive oil on med heat until 
soft and tender. 

Deviled Eggs:
6-8 hard boiled eggs, sliced, yolks added to bowl
Mash yolks with 2 T Dijon,  3 T mayo, salt, pepper and 
a dash or few shakes of:
Garlic powder, celery seed, cayenne pepper, dry mustard
Add yolk mixture back to eggs and garnish with a bacon crumble and paprika

To assemble salad place arugula on large serving plate
Add all ingredients listed under salad
Thinly slice flank steak on the bias
Top with Lemon Horseradish Dressing

Click Here To See Me Cook This Dish

Click Here for a Printer Friendly Version

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Nothing but a chicken wing

Growing up in South Florida there was a great wing place my good friend, Tara, and I used to frequent at least once a month.  I like to think we had pretty distinguished pallets at a young age because Chez Porkys was very sophisticated for a couple of high school kids!  We always split our wings and ordered them over rice with a side of curly fries (in high school, calories don't count), our favorite sauces were Asian, Lemon Garlic and Butter and the sweetest most delicious Raspberry wings I have ever tasted.   Living in Atlanta I miss Tara and I miss Chez Porkys...I also miss eating curly fries without thinking about how I shouldn't be eating curly fries, ugh.

This recipe pays tribute to my high school days....I give you grilled coconut curry wings with fresh cilantro!  They make great wings on game day!!!  You can also try boneless skinless breasts (dredge in flour first) sauté in a little olive oil and serve with the sauce over jasmine rice.

Yellow Curry Coconut Chicken Wings

2 pounds of chicken wings 
    and/or drumettes 2 T olive oil
Pinch red pepper flakes
Zest and juice of one lime
Small Red Thai Chilies 
  (as many or few as you want)
2 T curry powder1 can coconut milk
1 T soy sauce
1 T brown sugar
3 T chopped fresh cilantro
salt and pepper

Make marinade first

In a small sauce pan heat olive oil, red pepper flakes and curry powder over medium heat for 1-2 minutes (do not let burn). 
Add your whole chilis (just slice them open)
Add coconut milk and rest of the ingredients except cilantro
Bring to a simmer over med high heat, stirring constantly.
Taste sauce and adjust seasoning accordingly.
In last minute add cilantro
Take off heat and cool.
Store in a mason jar or air tight container.

Note….you will need to allow to come to room temperature if putting in fridge prior to making wings. 

Grill wings for about 15 minutes on each side, turn often.

Remove wings from grill and place in large storage container with a tight fitting lid. 
Pour yellow curry sauce over wings, cover, shake until coated.

Place on serving dish and sprinkle with fresh chopped cilantro.

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Breakfast at your Tailgate

Tailgates start early.....football and early make me thing of two things; eggs and bloodies.  How about this week we feature eggs and in the coming weeks I will re-create my bloody mary bar (horseradish, pickled okra and olives, do I have your attention yet?)  Oh wait, we are talking about eggs....here is an easy way to load up on protein before you hit the hot dogs and french fry stand at the stadium.  Not sure this post is going the way I want, I should be hungry for eggs and instead I am thinking about fries and a spicy Bloody Mary.  I feel like the book, If you Give a Pig a Pancake.....

The Ultimate Veggie Omelet


2-3 eggs per omelet
1 T water
Fresh baby spinach
Baby portabella mushrooms, sautéed*
Caramelized red onions*
Brie or goat cheese
Salt and Pepper
Cooking spray

*In a sauté pan combine 4T olive oil and one sliced red onion, cook over med heat until onion is soft and tender. 
Remove stems from portabellas and wipe clean with a wet paper towel. Slice thin and add to same sauté pan, onions removed, no need to clean or wash.
Add 3T olive oil and baby portabellas and cook until tender and wilted.  Turn off heat and sprinkle with kosher salt and cracked black pepper.

To make omelet:
Crack eggs in bowl and add water, whip well with a fork or whisk
Heat pan up on grill…you want it smoking hot
Remove from grill and spray with cooking spray, place back on heat
Add eggs to very hot pan
You can stir them a bit from the inside out before they settle too much…you want to move the uncooked egg to the outside edges
Add spinach, mushrooms, red onions and cheese about 2 minutes before omelet needs to be flipped.
Try you had at flipping your omelet or fold in both edges to make an egg burrito. 
Season with salt and pepper.

Serve and eat immediately….no one likes cold eggs! 

My obsession with black and white sesame seeds

Sesame seeds dress up a dish the same way high heels dress up, well, just about anything.  Add them to salads, Brussel Sprouts, cole slaw and this dish!  It is so easy to find good salmon these days and we have all heard about the health benefits of eating salmon; namely because of its high omega-3 fatty acid content.  Studies show Omega-3 fatty acids are responsible for overall cardiovascular health and can also combat some cancers, depression and even offer joint protection.  The best Salmon to eat is Wild Caught Alaskan Salmon and you can eat it often, 2-3 times per week.  That being said, you may want to start with this easy and delicious recipe, sounds like we all need to "Eat more Salmon!"

Grilled Asian Salmon with Sweet Pickled Cucumbers

1 salmon filet per person, skin on is fine
¼ cup Soy Sauce
¼ cup Terraki
1 teaspoon garlic, minced (the kind in the tube is great)
1 teaspoon ginger, mined  (tube again)
3 T brown sugar
2 T Dijon mustard
2 T honey
2 T olive oil

Mix all ingredients in a Ziploc bag and add the salmon to marinate for 30 minutes to 1 hour; longer if needed for your tailgate.

Note:  You don’t have to measure if you don’t want to…just throw everything together or omit anything you don’t have on hand.

Sweet Pickled Cucumbers
Sliced English cucumbers and/or pickling cucumbers, 
do not peel (use a mandolin or slice as thin as possible)
1 teaspoon salt
1 T sugar
1 t white sesame seeds
1 t black sesame seeds
Rice wine vinegar

Place cucumbers in a jar or container with a tight fitting lid, add all ingredients and cover with rice wine vinegar. 

Make at least 1 day in advance to allow cucumbers to soak up sweet and salty flavors.

Note:  You can serve this Salmon as a main course with a refreshing side or throw it all on a toasted poppy seed bun topped with your cucumbers for a Salmon Sandwich!  

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

My Dad Vinnie

Usually when I create recipes I pull from my memories growing up or from a recent restaurant dish I adore.  For this burger I called my Dad in South Florida (aka Southern New York) to see what proteins I should combine for a new burger I was creating; Veal and Sausage or Veal and beef or Sausage and Beef;  decisions I just couldn't make.  I began, "Hey Dad,  I am making an Italian Burger for my show and I need your help."  From there it went like this  "There is no such thing, C, you mean you are making a F$%#ing Meatball!"  Gotta love my Dad and his honesty.  However, he came around to the idea and told me I had to use a veal/sausage mixture, Provolone for melting and Garlic Bread Buns (let me tell you, these buns are ridiculously good) told me to "be careful" and call him again tomorrow.

Print the recipe, heat your grill, put on some Sinatra, start chopping your garlic and parsley, invite over your friends, open a bottle of Chianti and be careful...not really sure why, but that is what Vinnie would tell you!  Mangia, Mangia!

Garlic Bread Italian Burger

1 lb ground veal
1 lb ground sweet Italian sausage

1 cup Italian seasoned breadcrumbs
Handful fresh flat leaf parsley
1 egg
2 T olive oil
Salt and Pepper

Mix all ingredients together and form into 6-8 patties. 
Grill until the internal temperature of 160 degrees.

Top cooked burger with Sliced Provolone from the deli department, should only take a minute or two to melt.

2 T prepared pesto (store bought or homemade)
3 T mayo
Mix together to serve as condiment on burger.

Good hamburger buns
Brush with 4 T melted butter, 
1 clove chopped garlic and 
2T chopped fresh flat leaf parsley
Broil in oven until golden or toast on grill

Assemble and enjoy! 

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

It's a family affair!

I’ve been tailgating for a few years now and my past experience and research shows everyone loves a good BRAT.  But, you know I like to make things a bit more homemade and a tad fancy.  So, a good friend of mine mentioned her husband serves his brats with sliced jalapenos and melted cheddar, genius!  It is so simple yet shows you went the extra mile, of course I had to steal the idea!  I got to thinking about how I could tailor these brats for everyone in my family and here you go.  Try these out or create your own….but if you do, let me know what turned out best!!! 

 Brat's 3 Ways

1 package Brats
1 red onion, caramelized
Goat cheese
Sliced jalapeños
Cooked bacon
Shredded Monterey Jack Cheese
Shredded Cheddar Cheese
Hoagie Rolls

Grill each brat
Slice the brat lengthwise so it lies rather flat
Top the brats with the following ingredients and place back on the grill for a minute or two to melt the flavors together

Kid’s Brat:
Crumbled Bacon and Cheddar cheese

Mom’s Brat:
Caramelized Red Onion and Crumbled Goat Cheese

Dad’s Brat:
Sliced jalapeños and Monterey Jack or Cheddar cheese or a mixture of both
Serve each brat in a hollowed out hoagie roll

To caramelize red onion, slice a large red onion and sauté in 4T olive oil on med heat until soft and tender. 

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Make the most of your Meat...Kabobs

Kabobs remind me of growing up in South Florida....my mom made kabobs and deviled eggs for every bar-b-que we ever hosted.  My updated version use a beef shoulder petite tender cut of meat..it is really tasty, easy to cube and inexpensive...like under $4.00!  Ask your butcher (or the guy at Kroger behind the meat counter) if you don't see it right away.  I also use japanese eggplant on these...this might be my favorite veggie ever!  It is more tender and less bitter than regular eggplant, no need to soak or over salt either.  In the Atlanta area you can find Japanese Eggplant at any farmer's market or Super H market.

Celeste's Beef, Japanese Eggplant, Red Onion and 
Baby Portabella Mushroom Kabobs 
Drizzled with a fresh Chimichurri Sauce

1-2 Beef Shoulder Petite Tenders, cubed (can also use Sirloin)
1-2 Japanese eggplants, sliced into 1 inch chunks
1 red onion, cut into wedges
12-15 baby portabella mushrooms, clean and remove stems
Olive Oil
2 Limes
Kosher Salt
Cracked Black Pepper

Cube meat, cut eggplant and onion and add mushrooms to large bowl. 
Add 1/4-1/2cup olive oil, salt, pepper and juice from one lime.
Marinate for 30 minutes to 1 hour.

Thread meat, eggplant, onion and mushrooms on kabobs.
Grill a few minutes on each side until eggplant is soft and desired tenderness of meat is achieved.

Add the following to your food processor:
Huge handful of parsley, torn from stems
3 cloves raw garlic
1 teaspoon red wine vinegar
Juice from 1 lime
Pinch of Red Pepper Flakes
Pinch of Salt and Cracked Black Pepper

Turn Machine on and stream in Olive Oil until mixture resembles a dipping sauce (about 1 cup olive oil).

Serve Kabobs warm with a drizzle of Chimichurri or put on a hoagie roll and serve as a sandwich

Tailgating Tidbits is Back and Sizzlin' Hot

This year I have a new sponsor, BIC FlameDisk!  All my recipes are cooked from start to finish on a table top grill heated by FlameDisk.  This thing is incredible...it heats in 4 minutes, burns for 40 minutes and when it is finished you literally throw the FlameDisk away (you can even recycle it). The best part...no charcoal or lighter fluid!  It is perfect for tailgating, camping, or even a summer beach bar-b-que!  BIC FlameDisk will be in grocery stores everywhere starting in May...you can find out more here, Grill with Bic  

My new season Tailgating Tidbits will air May, June and July on Comcast Sports Southeast.  I promise easy, upscale and trendy yet delicious recipes each week....I'll even give you a Tailgating Breakfast and gluten free option (fancy, I know).  Please tune in every Thursday night during SEC Tonight to see me by the grill!  You can print each recipe here on my blog or re-watch the recipe and segment at CSS.

Thanks so much for all the support over the years....so excited to be back with Tailgating Tidbits!

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Talk about Trendy

Cannellini Bean, Kale and Garlic Soup  

Winter is winding down and summer is on the horizon. That means before long, it is skinny-tan season!  Let's work on the skinny part first....soup for dinner, no carbs! Here is a delicious soup that is ridiculously easy to make. Need another reason; Kale in this soup tastes much better than my attempt at Kale chips! Lastly, my picky family LOVES it!!! Kale is high in fiber but low in calories and is known as a natural detox food. It is also loaded with iron, Vitamins A and C as well as calcium. Do I have you on board yet.....no? How about the fact this soup reheats well and is super cheap to make. You can stick to you resolutions to save money and eat better by making this today...we can worry about being tan early May!  

5 Tablespoons Olive Oil
1 head fresh garlic, chopped
Black Pepper (a few turns of your pepper mill)
1 container Beef Broth (4 cups)
3 cans Cannellini Beans
1/2 bunch of Kale

Heat olive oil and black pepper in large soup
pot over med to med high heat for about 1 minute. 
Add chopped garlic and saute until garlic just starts to brown. 
Add 3 cans of beans and stir to combine, do not drain or rinse the beans. 
Add the entire container beef broth. 
Peel Kale from woody stem and tear into pieces. 
Add to the soup and stir to combine.
Bring to a boil and lower to a simmer until kale is tender and wilted (about 30-40 minutes)
Taste and add salt to your liking. 

Serve with a few sprinkles of fresh parmesan. 

(Note, you can also take an immersion blender to the soup to crush some of the beans and chop some of the kale but don't puree soup completely).