Say you live in the country. Say you live in a farming community. Say you’re not safe anymore. Because – IT’S THAT TIME again.
You are an innocent homeowner. You’re in the back yard playing with your dog. You hear a car door shut, then the faint chime of the front door. You can’t get around the house quickly because, you’re in the way, way back yard. Then, you hear it. It starts out softly, then reaches an uber high decibel range that makes the dog howl. Maniacal laughter peels out from your front yard. That car door slams and next, you hear tires squealing and gears a bangin’ as they tear out of your yard. You round the corner of the house just in time to catch a glimpse of the perpetrators. What have they done? What possessed them to act like this? Timidly, you approach the porch. No bodies are visible, no burning effigies, nothing. Then, you see that bag. That huge bag from the Bass Pro Shop. Oh no! Could it be? No, no, no, please not this early! You peek inside. Well, that’s that. It’s full. Full to the top. You are a victim of a drive-by squashing. It ain’t purty.
It’s not safe to leave the front porch unprotected anymore. I need to hire a full time guard. I can’t have this, this bag of doom showing up again! You see, I have 16 squash plants of my own. Everyone, EVERYONE, always plants too much squash. It’s an illness.
Just know this – I saw you leave. I know who you are. I saw what you did. I will get my revenge. And it will be sweet. Sweet, like the 12 loaves of zucchini bread I see in my immediate future.
The good people at Stonefire Authentic Flatbreads were kind enough to reward me with some coupons after I submitted a fan picture to their Facebook page. I raced to the store and used those suckers up! Now, I was faced with coming up with a spectacular way to use them. If my family’s lip smacking sounds were any indication, I nailed it. I think you’ll like this offering, too.
Assemble the cast. I am using brown turkey figs you can use whatever you want. Just use fresh not dried.
Waiting for good things to happen.
Open the flatbread and remove the sauce. You don’t want to use it for this. I take a sharpie and write – pizza sauce – on it and toss it in the freezer. In about 11 years, I’ll dig that one and all the others out of the bottom of the freezer and throw them away. But, I had good intentions!
Slide the flatbread into a pan.
Ready for broiling.
If you have a pizza stone, use that. The flatbread is already cooked and browned a little, but we want more color than that. Turn your broiler on and broil both sides of the flatbread until they are toasty brown and crispy. It will only take a couple of minutes per side.
While that’s toasting, slice the figs into quarters.
Slice ‘em up.
I ended up taking the stems off, too. They were just too woody.
Now, if you are the champ of multi-tasking, go ahead and toast the pine nuts in a dry, non-stick skillet.
Ready to toast.
If you are like me, do it first thing, so you don’t forget about it, leave the room and run back in when you smell burning nuts! Not that we ever mention that incident…… When they are nice and browned, they’re ready.
Dot the top of your flatbread with all that goat cheese creaminess.
Let it sit a bit to warm up, then smooth it all around.
Spread it out.
Cover it completely.
Next, spread all those figs around on top. If one or two happen to get eaten in the process, we won’t mention it.
Get figgy with it.
Sprinkle the toasted pine nut over it.
Ready to broil.
I carried mine over to the oven on its pizza pan and then I slid the flatbread on the top oven rack.
Let it broil for around 10 minutes. You want it to brown up a bit more and to let the figs soften. Lift up one edge and slip the pan back under it. If you have a pizza peel, use that! I can’t believe that I don’t have one yet. I am the Queen Of Kitchen Gadgets! Hmm, Mother’s Day is coming up. I see a gift giving option in my future. Anyhow, back to the flatbread.
Slide it out of the oven and set it on a heat proof surface. Drizzle the top with the honey.
Slice it up and enjoy. Great appetizer, brunch item or perfect for any buffet!
A tasty balance of sweet and salty, creamy and crunchy, all on a hand held flatbread.
1 Stonefire Flatbread thin pizza crust – reserve sauce packet for another use.
8 oz. fresh figs – sliced into quarters.
4 oz goat cheese – cut or crumbled into cubes.
¼ cup pine nuts – toasted
3 Tablespoons honey for drizzling
Toast pine nuts in a dry nonstick skillet over medium heat until lightly browned.
Preheat broiler on high.
Remove flatbread from wrapper and place on pizza pan*. Broil 4 to 6 inches from heat for 4 to 6 minutes. Remove from broiler, turn flatbread over and broil the other side for an additional 4 to 6 minutes. You want a nice, crispy, browned crust.
While flatbread is broiling, slice figs into quarter sections. Cut the little stems off if needed.
Remove the flatbread from the oven. While still hot, dot with the goat cheese. Once softened, spread out over the surface.
Spread the quartered figs out in an even layer. Sprinkle with toasted pine nuts.
Return to broiler and cook for 5 to 10 minutes, depending on how hot your oven cooks. You want everything to be heated through and the figs to soften slightly. Remove from oven and place on serving platter.
Drizzle with the honey.
Cut into 12 slices and serve!
* NOTE: You may use a pizza stone if you have one. Just remember to preheat the stone at the same time you preheat the broiler. You also can just slide the flatbread directly onto the oven rack.
Except for those of you who are looking out your window at snow. You have my sympathies. Even if you are still in winters cold grip, I bet you are seeing fresh asparagus in your markets. Asparagus means that spring has arrived! At least where they are growing. Tender delicious stalks poking their heads out of ground. Just waiting for me to come along and gobble them up! I’ve been doing that at the rate of several pound a week. I’m a bit of a freak for asparagus. I always save some to make into a frittata. Frittatas are the best answer to leftovers. If you’re wondering what to do with those tiny bits of leftover veggies hogging up valuable fridge space, make a frittata!
So, here we go!
Gather your ingredients. I use a leek in this recipe because I wanted a milder onion flavor.
Some yummy stuff right here!
Grate the cheese and set it aside.
I used Gouda, but use what you have. Swiss, cheddar, or jack cheeses work just great! Then, slice up the leeks.
Slice up the leeks.
Preheat your oven to 450º. Cut or snap the bottoms off of the asparagus.
Trim the bottoms off.
Line a baking sheet with foil. I used non-stick foil. That stuff is the best! Lay the spears out on the sheet in a single layer. Drizzle them with olive oil and sprinkle with salt & pepper. Roll them around so that they get all coated.
lined up all neatly
Smooth them out into a single layer again and place in the hot oven. Roast them for 8 to 10 minutes. You want them to soften, but not be mushy. When done, pull them out and let cool.
Such a pretty green!
While they are roasting, Break 8 eggs into a medium bowl.
All cracked up.
Whisk them up and add in the half & half, 3/4 cup of cheese and some salt & pepper. Whisk it, whisk it good.
The egg mix.
Reduce the oven temp to 350º. Get out a 10 inch, oven proof, nonstick skillet. Or, use your trusty cast iron skillet.
Reserve 5 or 6 whole spears to place onto the top of the frittata. Chop the rest into one inch pieces.
Chop the spears up.
Heat some olive oil in the skillet over medium heat. Add the leeks and cook stirring, for 3 minutes.
Add the leeks to skillet.
Add the garlic and cook another minute.
Careful and don’t brown it, like me.
Then, add in the chopped asparagus.
Pile it in.
Pour the egg – cheese mixture over the veggies in the skillet. Gently, stir it around to evenly spread the vegetables around.
Pour in the eggs.
Cook until the eggs are set around the edges of the pan, about 5 to 8 minutes. The insides will start to thicken up, too. Remove from the heat. Sprinkle the rest of the cheese on it and put those saved spears in a pretty pattern over the top.
Bake the frittata for 15 to 20 minutes, or until the eggs are set and the top is golden. Remove from oven and let rest for 5 minutes. Cut into wedges and serve!
6 spears would have been better than my 5.
I like to have this with just some plain, old, sliced up tomatoes and biscuits. Leftovers make a great breakfast, too.
A delicious salute to spring. This frittata showcases asparagus and adds in some leeks and tasty cheese for a quick and easy dish.
1 pound asparagus, trimmed of tough ends. Reserve 5 or 6 whole spears for topping.
2 Tablespoons olive oil – divided
1 teaspoons salt – divided
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper – divided
1 tablespoon diced garlic
1 leek, white and pale green parts, cleaned. Sliced in half lengthwise and into ½ inch pieces
8 extra-large eggs
½ cup half & half
1 cup shredded Gouda cheese, divided
Preheat the oven to 450°F.
Spread out the asparagus on a baking sheet. Drizzle the asparagus with 1 tablespoon of the olive oil, ½ teaspoon salt, and ½ teaspoon of the pepper Place the baking sheet in the oven and roast the asparagus about 8 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool for 5 minutes on the baking sheet.
Reduce the oven temperature to 350°F.
Chop the asparagus into 1-inch pieces. Reserve 5 or 6 whole stalks for the top.
Heat the remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil in a 10-inch oven proof, nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add the leeks, and cook for 3 minutes. Add in the diced garlic and cook an additional 1 minute. Return the cut up asparagus to the skillet.
Whisk the eggs, half & half, ¾ cup Gouda cheese, ½ teaspoon salt, and ½ teaspoon pepper in medium bowl. Pour over the ingredients in the skillet. Gently stir to evenly distribute the vegetables. Cook until the eggs are set around the edges, about 5 to 8 minutes.
Remove from heat. Sprinkle remaining ¼ cup Gouda cheese over the top. Place the reserved roasted asparagus spears around the surface of the frittata in a decorative manner.
Bake the frittata for 15 to 20 minutes, or until eggs are set and the top is golden. Let rest for 5 minutes. Cut into wedges and serve.
Winter has decided to wrap her icy fingers around Florida (and the rest of the country) for what I hope, is the last time. Enough with the cold already!
Cold weather means comfort foods. Hearty, stick to your ribs casseroles, flavorful soups & stews and crock pots full of all manner of tasty things. It also means I can run my oven as much as I want! When it’s 100 degrees outside, the last thing I want to do is stand in front of a blazing oven. So, I take advantage of the cold weather to fire it up and enjoy the extra heat.
Since our temperatures dipped down into the low 30′s (hush, this is sub-tropical Florida, 30 is COLD), I decided to make my favorite bean casserole. It is so easy. Minimum effort for maximum flavor. It uses cannellini beans. These beans are a good for you inclusion to your diet. They are high in magnesium, fiber, iron, folate and a good source of protein. If you can’t find cannellini bean, you can substitute great northern or any white bean.
On with the show -
Gather all your ingredients. Get out a cutting board and knife, so you can dice up all those veggies. Did you know that the celery, onion and carrot mix is called a mirepoix? You do now! Not only do we provide good eats, you get to learn new things, too.
Do you see that? Wait, here it is -
kitchen kitty is watching you.
There she is. Kitchen kitty is making sure I do this right. Anyhow, onward. Pre-heat the oven to 400º. Get out your dutch oven. Now, lets dice up some mirepoix. Do the celery
dice the celery
The carrots – which btw – I don’t peel. I use organic, so it’s wash, dry and eat.
dice the carrots
Dice up some onion. You’ll need a cup of each. Oh, and dice up 3 tablespoons of parsley.
dice the onion
Put your pot of the stove, over medium – high heat and add 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Dump in the mirepoix.
Add the celery, carrot & onion to the pot.
Cover the pot and cook for about 8 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the veggies are soft. Turn the heat off and add in the white wine vinegar, scraping up the browned bits off the bottom.
add the vinegar
Now, dump in 2 cans of cannellini beans with their juices. Add in the chopped parsley, thyme and some salt & pepper. Give it a stir.
add the beans and things
Add in 1/2 cup of shredded cheese. I used Boars Head Gouda. You can use whatever vegetarian friendly cheese that you like or can find.
add in some cheese
In a large measuring cup or small bowl, add 1 cup of panko bread crumbs, the remaining parsley, cheese and tablespoon of olive oil.
making the crumb topping
And mix it well.
Spread the crumb topping in an even layer over the top of the casserole.
Ready to bake
Place it in the oven and bake for 20 to 30 minutes. When it’s all bubbly and the crumb top is golden, you are ready to pull it out of the oven.
Let it rest for 5 minutes to let that bubbling, bean brew settle down. Serve it up with a nice crusty bread or a focaccia. We had a whole wheat focaccia. Yum!
An easy, fast, delicious cannellini bean casserole with a crunchy crumb topping.
2 – 19 oz cans cannellini beans
1 teaspoon dried thyme
3 Tbs. chopped fresh parsley, divided
1 cup onion, diced
1 cup diced celery
1 cups diced carrots
3 Tbs. olive oil, divided
1 tsp. white wine vinegar
¾ cup coarsely grated Gouda cheese, divided
1 cup plain panko breadcrumbs
salt & pepper to taste
Preheat oven to 400°F.
Heat 2 Tbs. oil in Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add the diced carrots, celery and onion, and cook, covered, 6 to 8 minutes, or until onion is soft, stirring occasionally. Remove pot from heat, and stir in the white wine vinegar, using a spatula to scrape up any browned bits stuck to bottom of pot. Add beans with juices, chopped thyme, chopped parsley, ½ cup shredded cheese, salt & pepper. Stir well to combine.
Combine breadcrumbs, remaining 1 Tbs. chopped parsley, and remaining ¼ cup shredded cheese in small bowl. Drizzle remaining 1 Tbs. oil into crumb mixture, and combine to moisten breadcrumbs. Spread breadcrumb mixture over bean mixture. Bake gratin, uncovered, 30 minutes, or until casserole is bubbly and the top is browned. Cool 5 minutes. Serve.
Coarsely ground white corn meal. You either love them or hate them. I am in the lovers group but don’t mind the haters. It just means more for me. I’m not here to make you eat grits. Nope, nuh uh. I’m just here to offer a super easy, great grits recipe to those who already love them. Now, if you are a hater and you still feel the need to give this recipe a try, then do it!. Broaden your horizons. Live the dream. Embrace the southerner you were meant to be.
p.s. don’t tell anyone, but polenta is just yellow grits. shushhhh.
Onward! Gather the necessities.
Ingredients for tomato cheese grits
Pour the 4 cups of vegetable broth into a 2 quart stock pot. Set it on the stove and bring to a boil.
Heat the broth
While that’s heating, grab the tomatoes, core them and chop them up.
Once the broth reaches a boil, stir in the quick cooking grits and the diced tomatoes. Throw in some salt, too.
stir in the tomatoes and grits
Stir it up real good and return to a boil. Then, lower the heat to simmer and cook, stirring frequently, for 15 to 20 minutes. Just until the grits are tender.
While that’s happening, get out your cheese a grate it up. You’ll need 1 & 1/2 cups of it.
Grate up a bunch o’ cheddar.
When the grits reach the tender stage, remove the pot from the heat and add in the butter and cheese. Mix it up real good. You want that melted cheese to be in every bite.
Add in the cheese and butter.
Now, comes the hard part. You need to let it rest for 5 minutes. I know, I know, it’s hard. Your patience will be rewarded.
Tomato Cheese Grits
Now, pour it into a dish and serve!
Here’s a bonus for you! If you add in a whole, 4 oz can of diced green chiles when you add in the tomatoes & grits, you’ll have Chile Cheese Tomato Grits. Just as yummy!
Something simple. Something easy. Something – so delicious. A gratin. Fling a bunch of stuff in a casserole dish and top it with cheese or breadcrumbs. Bake. Now, you have a gratin. You can be extra special and use both cheese and breadcrumbs. Bake. Now, you have a show stopping gratin. I like show stopping. You’ll like it, too.
This one uses tomatoes, basil and goat cheese. Why? Because they had been in my fridge a little too long and I needed to make room for fresh vegetables from the co-op. Saturdays are always a surprise dinner day. We never know what’s going to be left over from the week or what needs to be used up right now. I don’t know about you, but things hide in my fridge. You know it’s in there, but you can’t find it. Later, much later, dang! There it is! Harumph. Sneaky veg. Well, these tomatoes were hiding under a bag of spinach. I found them, though. Along with that little knob of ginger that I never use up. The tomatoes, I’ll use. The ginger? Well, let’s just say the chickens enjoyed it.
For the tomato goat cheese gratin
Slice the tomatoes into 1/4 inch slices.
Slice the tomatoes
You don’t have to get out the ruler. Just guess. Look! I used my ceramic Yoshi blade. That thing is great for making really thin slices of tomatoes. I use it for nothing else. I am a Yoshi blade snob.
Then, chop up the basil. You can roll it up and make a lovely chiffonade, or you can be like me and scrunch the leaves up and hack away. Whatever gets the job done.
chop up the basil
Get out a 9 x 9 inch casserole dish and give it a coat of spray oil. Use half the tomatoes and make a layer in the bottom, overlapping the sides if necessary. Sprinkle half the diced garlic over them.
garlic and tomatoes
Use half the basil – after you save some for the garnish – and spread out that over the ‘maters.
Add the basil over the tomatoes.
Now, do that again and make the second layer. Then, get out the olive oil and drizzle it over the top. Add some salt and pepper, cause you know you’ll want it.
Top with olive oil and salt & pepper.
Now, you could go ahead and grab a fork and gobble this down right now because it;s just that good -
But DON’T! You’d miss the creamy goat cheese and crunch topping! Instead, plop that dish into the oven for 10 minutes. While it’s cooking, get a half cup of panko bread crumbs out. Sprinkle a little salt & pepper over it and add in a tablespoon of olive oil. Mix it up real good.
panko, salt & pepper, and olive oil
All mixed up
Now that 10 minutes has passed, get the hot dish out of the oven. It’s cheese time! Pinch off little pieces of the goat cheese and drop them all over the top of the dish.
add the goat cheese
Cover it evenly. Share the cheese. I know those look like hunks of cauliflower and I imagine that would work too, but stick with the cheese. You’ll thank me later. Then, sprinkle all the seasoned panko crumbs on top.
Now, pop that dish back into the oven for another 10 minutes or until the top is all nice a browned.
Don’t forget to finish it off with that basil you saved!
All you need is a fork!
Let’s get a better look at this, shall we?
Extreme close up!
Oh my! Oh my, oh my, oh my! That looks wonderful! It is, really! So good. Try it! Soooonnn.
A delicious layered tomato gratin topped off with creamy goat cheese and crunchy panko bread crumbs.
3 large tomatoes or 4 smaller ones
4 oz. weight – goat cheese
⅔ oz. weight – basil, approx ½ cup chopped. Divided.
1 Tablespoon minced garlic, divided.
½ cup Panko bread crumbs
3 Tablespoons olive oil, divided.
Salt and pepper to taste
Preheat oven to 425º. Spray a 9 x 9 inch casserole dish with cooking spray.
Reserve some basil for garnish.
Slice tomatoes into ¼ inch slices. You don’t have to measure, just guess.
Using half the tomatoes, place a layer of them in the casserole dish, overlapping the sides, if necessary. Next, evenly spread a layer, using half of the chopped basil. Sprinkle half the garlic over that. For the next layer, repeat with tomatoes, basil and the rest of the garlic. Over the top, drizzle 2 tablespoons of olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
Bake casserole for 10 minutes. While it’s baking, to your panko crumbs, add the remaining tablespoon of olive oil and some salt and pepper. Stir to combine.
After 10 minutes of baking time has passed, remove casserole from oven. Pinch off pieces of goat cheese and drop over the top, as evenly as possible. Top the casserole with the seasoned panko bread crumb mix. Return to the oven for an additional 10 minutes or until the crumb topping is nice and golden. Garnish with the reserved basil.
You’ve seen them in stores. Those brightly colored little sweet peppers. So colorful. Just crying out for you to buy them. We had been slicing and adding to our salads because they are loaded with vitamin C. That’s it. Nothing else.
I was flipping through an issue of Cooking Light magazine and BAM! There on page 62 was my salvation. Stuffed mini bell peppers! Stuff them!
Who’d have thunk it? Not me. Stuffing was for jalapeño poppers. But, lately, the jalapeños have been a little too hot for my tastes. So, I hustled out and got some of those sweet peppers and stuffed them. Such cheesy, creamy & crunchy goodness. No more scorching off my taste buds!
This recipe is so versatile. You can grill them, bake or broil them. Or if you just need a few, do like me and pop them into the toaster oven. Provided that you have a toaster oven.
Gather your ingredients.
Set the cream cheese so it will come to room temperature.
Get out a baking sheet and line it with foil. If you have one, place a cooling rack inside the pan. Those little pepper halves like to flip over on their sides. Then, all the yummy filling oozes out and we can’t have that.
Cut the peppers in half and scoop out the little seed pod.
ready to stuff
Dice up the scallions and cilantro. Add them into a bowl, along with the cream cheese and sour cream. Squeeze half a lime over it and mix it up.
Using a small spoon, stuff the pepper halves with the cheese mix and place on the prepared pan.
Ready to bake
Now, you can grill them, broil them, or bake them. Your choice. Since I was making a small batch, I just used my toaster oven. I did remember to close the door after I took the picture.
I need to channel my inner Rodney Dangerfield. We don’t get no respect, I tell ya, no respect. I just picked up this flyer from my local BJ’s Wholesale Club.
You Keep Using That Word, I Do Not Think It Means What You Think It Means
Meatless Meal Solutions. I thought – Great! Coupons I can use! Then, I gave the coupons a look. Salmon, Tilapia, Clams. Not items that you would find on a vegetarian’s table for meatless Monday, or any other day.
How many times have you spotted a Meatless Monday recipe only to find that it includes fish, shrimp, or even chicken? Meatless – how complicated can this one word be? Turns out, it’s complicated.
The Merriam – Webster online dictionary defines meat as – “animal tissue considered especially as food”. But, also as – “flesh of a mammal as opposed to fowl or fish”. They also define fish as – “an aquatic animal”. Under fowl we have – “a bird of any kind” and “meat of fowls used as food”.
Confused? Me, too. Animal tissue, flesh, meat. I’m fairly sure that none of those words fit in with the concept of “meatless”.
So, until we get this whole meatless thing defined, be careful what you buy or eat. What you think is meatless, might not be without meat after all.
I made a recipe that I got from Giada. It was listed as a vegetarian dish. Mine didn’t turn out quite like hers, so I went back to the site to read the reviews and see what I did wrong. A couple of reviews down, I saw this – “You do realise that parmesan cheese is not veggie-friendly in that it contains rennet! I suggest that you use a veggie alternative hard cheese if you really want to make it veggie-friendly.”
Whoosh! Just like that, all the air went out of my lungs. Rennet. Cow’s stomach. That certainly isn’t vegetarian. I have messed up. Messed up big time. See, I use parmesan cheese. A lot. I’ve used it in my recipes that I have shared with you. My vegetarian recipes.
Please accept my apologies. I am still learning. I shall endeavor to do better in the future.
I have gone back over the recipes and changed the forbidden cheeses to vegetarian approved varieties. There is a rainbow. There are many cheeses that are made with microbial or vegetable rennets. I’ll list some, that are taken right from the manufacturer’s websites. You can also look for the kosher label. If it’s kosher, it’s good for us veg heads, too.
What kind of rennet is used to make Cabot cheeses?
Cabot uses a microbial-based enzyme to manufacture all of our award-winning cheeses with the exception of our Processed American Cheese slices. The microbial-based enzyme coagulates the milk into curds and whey. It is approved for vegetarians and also allows our cheeses to pass kosher certification. Our Processed American Cheese slices are sourced from plants that Cabot does not own, so we cannot guarantee that they are made with microbial enzymes. Cabot Cheese
Is Tillamook Cheese vegetarian-friendly? Most of our cheeses are made with a vegetable-based rennet that’s kosher-certified, halal-certified, and vegetarian-friendly. Three of our cheeses – Vintage White Medium Cheddar, Vintage White Sharp Cheddar, and Vintage White Extra Sharp Cheddar – are made with a traditional animal-based rennet . The traditional rennet helps develop the unique flavor in these three cheeses. Tillamook cheese
Is Organic Valley cheese made with animal or vegetarian rennet/enzymes?
Most cheese production uses the enzyme rennet to coagulate milk into curd. Organic Valley uses “microbial enzymes” for most all of their cheeses instead of animal rennet. Using microbial enzymes allows us to serve the strict needs of vegetarians. Microbial enzymes are produced by a controlled fermentation process.
We do use a lipase enzyme derived from animals in creating the flavor profile for our Blue Cheese Crumbles, Kickapoo Blue Cheese Wheel/Wedges and the Romano in our Italian Blend Shredded Cheese; and we use animal rennet in our 3 Vermont Cheddar cheeses for coagulation. Use of these enzymes derived from animals makes Blue Cheese Crumbles, Kickapoo Blue Cheese Wheel/Wedges, Italian Blend Shredded Cheese, and Medium, Sharp, and Extra-Sharp Vermont Cheddar our six non-vegetarian cheeses. Organic Valley Cheese
What is the source of the enzymes in your cheeses?
Rennets (enzymes) are added when making cheese to thicken the mixture to form the curds. These milk-clotting enzymes originate in microbial (synthetic) and animal sources. The manufacturing process of most varieties of cheese (all cured or ripened cheeses) involves enzyme coagulation.
Most Sargento shredded and sliced cheeses and all of our refrigerated natural cheese snacks are made with non-animal rennets. The only Sargento natural cheeses that may contain animal enzymes are those that contain Romano, Asiago, or Jarlsberg cheeses. Those include: Artisan Blends Shredded Parmesan & Romano Cheese, Shredded 6 Cheese Italian Cheese, Shredded Reduced Fat 4 Cheese Italian Cheese, and Deli Style Sliced Jarlsberg Cheese. The cheese dip in our non-refrigerated MooTown Snacks, Cheese Dip & Cracker Sticks, Cheese Dip & Pretzel Sticks, and Cheese Dip & Crackers, is made with beef rennet. Sargento cheese
Who doesn’t love chili? Oh, I’m sure a few of you exist, but I bet I have a better chance of running into Bigfoot than you. I’d better pack some chili so Mr. Bigfoot doesn’t get angry.
This is a three bean chili only because I like seeing the different beans in it. One bean is boring and we can’t have boring food. It also has brown sugar because I find it helps counteract the acidity of the tomatoes. And, it gives a nice flavor profile. Sweet & heat, that’s what you’ll find here. Plus, with the ease of the crock pot, you just dump in the ingredients, give it a stir and forget it. We’ve got more important things to do, you know. There’s the new edition of Bon Appetit to read. Although, I bet they’ve never featured a crock pot recipe! Now, on with the show.
Fixings for a big ole pot of chili!
Open, drain and rinse the pinto and black beans. Add to the crock pot. Dump in the cans of kidney beans, too. You can drain them, but I like the added liquid and the thickening that it adds. Pour in all the canned tomatoes with their juices.
Add the beans & tomatoes
Dice up the onion and garlic. Dice up the jalapeno, seeds and all. This is a very spicy chili. If you feel the need, you can deseed and devein the jalapenos. We won’t tell anyone. Get your spices out. Retrieve the cold Guinness from the fridge. Leave his 11 companions for later consumption.
Diced veg and spices. Oh and a Guinness beer!
Add the diced veggies and the spiced to the pot.
Add the spices and veggies.
Now, crack open the secret weapon, the Guinness beer and pour that in. Watch that sugar foam.
Pour in the Guinness.
Reach over and scratch the head of the kitchen kitty, since it just popped up over the counter.
Anything for me?
Nothing gets cooked in this kitchen without her approval. Wash hands because cat hair is not an approved condiment. Now, mix the chili makings all up. You’ll notice that I did not add any salt. I think that all the canned veggies add enough salt. Give yours a taste, if you think it needs salt, add it.
Give it a good stir.
Kitchen kitty will approve. Now, cover up the crock pot and cook the chili at low for 6 hours. Give it a stir about the halfway mark, just to make sure everything is still just fine. When done, serve with plenty of grated cheese, some cilantro and even some more jalapeno slices. Top with some sour cream, if you’re into that sort of thing. Break out the crackers, crack open a cold beer and enjoy!
An easy three bean vegetarian chili with a sweet, spicy kick!
2 – 15.5 oz cans of dark red kidney beans
1 – 15.5 oz can of black beans, drained and rinsed
1 – 15.5 oz can of pinto beans, drained and rinsed
1 – 10 oz can of Rotel tomatoes with green chiles
1 – 10 oz can of Rotel Hot Tomatoes with Habaneros
1 – 14 oz can of diced tomatoes
½ cup of dark brown sugar
2 jalapenos, diced. Remove seeds, if desired.
½ cup diced onions
2 Tablespoons diced garlic
2 Tablespoons tomato paste
4 Tablespoons of Chili powder
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground chipotle powder
1 – 12oz bottle of Guinness beer
Get out your crock pot. I used a 6 qt one. Wash and dice your onion, jalapeno and garlic. Deseed and devein the jalapeno to control the heat, if desired.
Open, drain and rinse the black and pinto beans. Dump in the crock pot. Add in the dark red kidney beans.*
Pour in all three cans of tomatoes, with their juices. Add the brown sugar, ground cumin, chipotle powder and chili spices. Add in the jalapenos, onion and garlic. Pour the beer over all. Stir well to combine.
Cover and cook on low for 6 hours.
Serve topped with shredded cheese and cilantro. Serve with crackers and hot sauce. Plop on some sour cream, if desired. Don’t forget the beer!
* Note: you may drain and rinse the kidney beans if you want. I like the additional liquid and thickness they give to the chili.