Cream Cheese Cranberry Stuffed Celery

Cream Cheese Cranberry Stuffed Celery
Recipes in this Post

Thanksgiving Day, and I have an extra bunch of celery after making the stuffing, what to do with it? We were having a small dinner party, and I think it’s nice to have a little appetizer with your wine whilst waiting for the big attraction, the turkey.

I wanted to make something that would stick with the theme of the dinner. Usually, I stuff celery with blue cheese and cream cheese, but this time, I wanted something different. Stalk the pantry, and there, in the front, is a bag of dried cranberries. Perfect!

This was a real hit at our gathering. Thankfully, as chef, I made one for myself to taste test. Good thing, because I didn’t get one when I set the tray out – it was gone in minutes. My guests really liked them!

When you make this, please use the hearts of celery. If you cannot get hearts, then at least remove the tough strings. There is nothing more embarrassing than biting into a piece of celery and having strings hanging out of your mouth! Just take a knife, start at either end of the stalk, and pull the strings out. That’s better!

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Cheesy Jalapeno Corn Bread with Creamed Corn

Recipes in This Post Cheesy Jalapeno Corn Bread with Creamed Corn

The Pizza Guy Leaveth…

When we get pizza delivery, the box always has one or two small containers of jalapeño peppers. I don’t know why, we don’t use it on our pizza, and they send it even if you tell them not to. But, that’s okay, there are recipes to be made with those lovely little peppers, like Jalapeño Stuffed Peppers and, of course, Cheesy Jalapeno Corn Bread with Creamed Corn.

Another thing I don’t ever buy is cream style corn, and yet, it manages to show up in my pantry on occasion. Sometimes, people bring gifts, and sometimes it’s food they don’t like or know what to do with. I don’t like cream style corn, but I love it in corn bread. Will I purposely go out and buy it just for corn bread? Nope, I wait until some kind soul mysteriously adds it to my pantry.

Rich and Simple

This is a simple bread to make, and rich. Using melted butter instead of oil makes it buttery tasting, and Chipotle gives it a smoky kick, and the cream style corn makes it nice and moist. Serve it with chili, or plain by itself warm out of the oven.

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Leftover Madness – French Onion Soup, Shrimp Scampi, Ham and Cheese Panini

The past few days have been full of left overs. That’s a good thing, and a good way to save money, but you have to get creative.

When I made the Veal Marsala Meatballs, I made enough to freeze some for another time. Spane and I were at the market on Thursday, and I was thinking of making enchiladas, but Spane didn’t seem to enthusiastic about it, so I asked him if he wanted spaghetti and meatballs, and he said yes.

I had everything I needed to make it, the veal meatballs, a large can of diced tomatoes, basil and garlic. The only thing I needed to make a good meal was a baguette of French bread to make garlic bread to go with our pasta, so I bought a long baguette. It was large enough that I cut it in half and made my garlic butter, intending to make another half on Friday. I bought some large frozen shrimp to have on Friday.

I served the meatballs separately from the pasta, and we ate all of those, and the garlic bread. There was still spaghetti and sauce left over. I had made enough garlic butter for both halves of the bread, and had left the left over in the refrigerator.

I took some of the garlic butter, put it in a pan, and heated the shrimp in that garlic butter. By doing that, I didn’t have quite enough garlic butter for the other half of the baguette, so I added a little olive oil and balsamic butter, whirred it around, spread that on the bread, topped it with a little Parmesan cheese, and threw it in the oven for a few minutes.

We ate all the shrimp Scampi, and all the spaghetti and sauce, and were a little to stuffed to finish the garlic bread.

So, now I had left over balsamic garlic bread. Today, Saturday, was cold and rainy, so soup sounded like the perfect meal. Originally, I was going to make macaroni and cheese as an excuse to turn on Bertha, but grilled cheese sandwiches sounded like a better idea.

What kind of soup could I make and use up the left over garlic bread? Why French Onion, of course. That is such a simple soup to make, and is really fool-proof.

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Mac and Cheese – True Comfort Food

Recipes in this post

So, yesterday as I am walking around Glendale with my son, I have this craving for comfort food, specifically Mac and Cheese. I ask my son if he would like Mac and Cheese and he is, at only five years old, thrilled.

We’re around Chevy Chase and Brand, and I am inspired by the wonderful Mac and Cheese at Eat Well on Brand. So, we walk towards Albertson’s and my son is telling me that we don’t have to go to the store to get Mac and Cheese because Stephen had just bought Mac and Cheese in a box from Trader Joe’s. It’s good, but I was craving the real thing, and I said that to my son. He was confused.

We walked around the store for a while and I was thinking about what kind of Mac and Cheese I wanted to make. Did I want to spend time and money, or just go for the Kraft Deluxe and add some of my own fixin’s?

Tillamook White Cheddar was on sale – that made up my mind. Then it was just a matter of getting pasta, and I was done.

When we got home, I started making my Mac and Cheese. Stephen was interested in seeing what actually goes into making the stuff. I also decided I wanted mine to be a little different.

It was truly a wonderful dish, and here is the recipe to share with you.

Mac and Cheese

Ingredients

Macaroni

  • Elbow Macaroni
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1 small shallot or 1 teaspoon shallots in oil
  • 8 oz White Cheddar
  • 4 oz Sharp Yellow Cheddar
  • 3 tbsp butter
  • 3 tbsp flour
  • 1/8 tsp Russian mustard or dry English mustard
  • 1/2 tsp Worcestershire
  • Freshly grated nutmeg
  • Pinch cayenne pepper
  • Freshly grated pepper
  • 1 cup milk (or so)
  • 1 bay leaf

Topping

  • 3 tbsp butter
  • Bread Crumbs

Instructions

  1. Get a large casserole and preheat your oven for 350.
  2. Grate cheese and set aside. Put a large pot of water on to boil. Add salt to the water.
  3. Mince the shallot if you are not using shallots in oil..
  4. While the water is coming to a boil, get a large saucepan and melt the butter in it. Add the shallots and sauté them until they are translucent.
  5. Add the mustard and mix it in thoroughly. Add the flour and stir to completely incorporate it into the butter. Make sure there are no lumps of flour.
  6. Add nutmeg, and pepper. Continue to stir constantly. The flour will now be ready to accept the milk.
  7. Pour three quarters of the milk into the butter/flour mixture, the Worcestershire, cayenne, and bay leaf. Stir until thickened. You may not need the entire cup of milk, but add if needed. You should cook the sauce for about 10 minutes or until the sauce has thickened nicely. Remove the bay leaf.
  8. Drain the pasta and put it into a very large bowl.
  9. Add the cheese to the pasta in the bowl and cover with the sauce.
  10. Toss the mixture together then put it into the casserole.
  11. Melt the remaining butter.
  12. Sprinkle the bread crumbs over the macaroni then drizzle the butter on top.
  13. Place in the oven, and bake 20 minutes.
  14. Enjoy!

Quick notes

Freshly grated bread crumbs are best, but Panko or regular bread crumbs will do fine.

Variations

You can keep some of the cheese in chunks, so you will get clumps of cheese when you eat it. Our family particularly likes this. You can also add some fresh mozzarella to the cheeses if you want.

If you are extra sensitive to heat, omit the cayenne, although there is so little it should have virtually no heat.

Preparation time: 10 minute(s)

Cooking time: 20 minute(s)

Diet type: Vegetarian

Number of servings (yield): 6

Culinary tradition: USA (Traditional)

My rating 5 stars:  ★★★★★ 1 review(s)

Copyright © The Good Plate.
Recipe by Adrienne Boswell.
Microformatting by hRecipe.