Friday, December 31, 2010

New Years means.....

New Years means... FOOD!!!!!!!!!!!!

Alright, it has been a long long time since I entered the world of blogging, and my poor food blog has only 3 posts, but I promise, I will post (and cook) more this year!! Since it has been 2 years, and I’ve gotten 3 posts, I may even DOUBLE my annual average!!

Getting ready for the party at the Schweda’s, and HAD to make a couple (3) Hors D’oeuvres (really, what is with the way that word is spelled? The French should NOT be allowed to make up words! Food, yes, they are good at that, but they really should just stay in the kitchen and leave the language arts to those of us who can talk like we don't have a stick... never mind, sorry to all my “french” friends...)


Why “Angel-ed”, cause “...the Devil ain’t got no-thing, no-thing on me” (GREAT, now I have that song stuck in my head... “I’m taking back, taking back my authority...”)

Alright, trying to dislodge the song long enough to write...

First, you HAVE to hard boil eggs!!
(I know, novel concept, right, but I forgot to add eggs to the grocery list last night...)

Most recipes “skip” this step, but as many of my viewers are non-culinary inclined, I will put in here HOW to hard boil eggs!

Starting with COLD water, place the eggs in a pot with at least 2 inches of water covering eggs. With the water, add 1 Tablespoon White Vinegar (to prevent whites from running if eggs crack) and 1/2 Teaspoon salt (to make eggs easier to peel).

Do these added 2 ingredients work? Well, my eggs didn’t crack, more because I was careful, not because of the vinegar. As for easy to peel, they were a pain in the you know what to peel!! Is there any “validity” to these two ingredients? I don’t know, I’m not a Culinary Alchemist, and I don’t play one on T.V., but I do know one, who follows this blog, and will probably post his answer in the comments section (Oh Shane, where are you...).

Ok, now turn heat on HIGH and bring water to boil. Once water boils, turn heat LOW and simmer for 1 minute! Cover pot, turn off heat, and let sit on the hot (but off) burner for 12-15 minutes. Eggs will continue to cook.

After eggs are done (if you are unsure, crack one open. After all, when cooking you always need to be making extra for snacking along the way! A hungry cook is NOT a happy cook!) transfer to Ice Cold Water! If you live in Yuma, and your faucet does not put out COLD water, then USE ICE in your ice cold water!! You want the eggs to cool down!

Now, while the eggs are cooking, you get your ingredient list together!

Spicy Angel-ed Eggs Ingredients:

12 eggs, hard boiled (hmm, eggs in a EGG recipe? Should I put a warning that these contain EGG Product...)

2 tsp yellow mustard powder
1/4 tsp Salt
1 tsp ground thyme
1 tsp parsley flakes
paprika (to garnish)
diced olives (one can, or 4.25 oz)
1/2 lb. diced ham (or you can dice it your self)
1/2 cup spicy balsamic aioli (see recipe below)

While eggs boil, dice up your ham, if you bought ham steaks

Dice em small

Add all your ingredients above except eggs, paprika and aioli

Prepare your Spicy Balsamic Aioli (ok, I basically used Pre-Made-Store-Bought Mayo and spiced it up!)

Spicy Balsamic Aioli Ingredients

1/2 cup mayonnaise
1 tsp horseradish
2 tsp Balsamic vinegar

Mix all 3 ingredients together, beating with a whisk quickly to keep mayo from clumping (curdling). Once smooth and well mixed, it will not curdle

Once eggs are done and COLD, peel, cut in half (length wise), and remove yolks. Mash yolks with a fork and stir in Aioli.

Fold in (yes, you can “fold” eggs!) the remaining ingredients (except paprika)

Once everything is well mixed, spoon into the egg halves (the white portions you set aside. You DID set those halves aside, right??)

Sprinkle tops with paprika to taste, and enjoy!!

On now to the next culinary New Years snacky snack!

Stuffed Mushrooms and Stuffed Cucumbers!!! (Ok, this will be 3 more recipes! Eggs, and Aioli above, mushroom stuffing, mushrooms, and cucumbers! “Technically getting 5 recipes in 1 blog, I HAVE done more this year than in the past 2!!!)

Mushroom Stuffing!!!!

Wash 2 pounds mushrooms! Yep, 2 POUNDS!!!

Remove stems from mushrooms (don’t throw away!!)

Now, with your stems separated you can start on the stuffing

Mushroom Stuffing (recipe 3)


Stems from 2 lbs mushrooms (I used just plain baby browns)
Heads from 1/2 lb mushrooms (making extra stuffing for stuffed cucumbers)
3 Tbl butter
4 Cloves garlic
1/4 tsp salt
1/8 tsp fresh ground pepper
1 1/4 cups fine bread crumbs (I used pre-packaged “Italian Style”)
3.5 oz shredded Gouda cheese

Melt butter in large sauce pan and heat until “foam” subsides

Puree mushroom stems and heads in food processor

Mince garlic

Add mushroom puree, garlic, salt and pepper to hot melted butter

Cook about 5 minutes

Add shredded cheese

Stir until cheese melts

Mix in bread crumbs

Stir/mix until bread crumbs are fully incorporated and there are no “powdery” areas!

Mushroom stuffing is DONE!!

Stuffed Mushrooms (recipe 4)


Mushroom caps from 1 1/2 lbs mushrooms (de-stemmed)
Mushroom stuffing (see above)

Pre heat oven to 400 degrees

Place mushroom caps, bottoms down, in a lightly greased baking dish

Bake for about 10 minutes, until fluid oozes out of mushrooms

Pull out of oven (duh)

Turn caps over (so opening from stem is up)

Stuff caps with stuffing (there will be stuffing left over for stuffed cucumbers, recipe 5 below)

Return to oven and bake an additional 20 minutes, until caps are nice and toasty dark and stuffing is browned (even browner).


Stuffed Cucumbers


3 ENGLISH cucumbers
Mushroom stuffing (recipe 3 above)

Now, English cucumbers look a bit different than normal ones. They are seedless, have more flavor, and are not as “mushy” and regular ones, making them perfect for stuffing!!

Using a potato peeler, peel down sides of cucumbers, leaving an even amount of peel between every peeled area (this is for looks more than anything, but it will also help lighten the “bitter” taste of the peel)

Slice cucumbers into slices about 3/4 inch thick. Any thinner and you won’t really be able to hollow them out without going through the bottom.

Use a mellon baller to scoop out inside center of each slice, being careful not to go through the bottom. You want little cucumber cups, not pipes!

Fill cups with mushroom stuffing, plate with your other appetizers, and you are done!!

Now, go enjoy the party!!!!!!!!!!!