Bacon Ranch Popcorn

For your football watching days to come, you just may want to have a bowl of this sitting by to munch on.  Yes, bacon, yes, popcorn, yes buttermilk ranch dressing mix, yes, some butter, yes some parmesan cheese, and yes, a sprinkle of black pepper.  Adds up to one great big bowl of wonderful stuff!

For this football munchie, you will need:

one (1.3 oz) bag of microwave popped popcorn

4 to 6 slices of bacon, fried crisp and rough chopped

2 tsp of buttermilk ranch dressing mix (you can add a little more if you like a little more of the ranch taste)

1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese

4 tbsp melted butter

1/4 to 1/2 tsp fresh ground pepper

Empty the bag of popped popcorn in a bowl; toss in the chopped bacon, the ranch dressing mix and the parmesan cheese; drizzle in the melted butter and toss.  Add the ground pepper and toss one more time.  Enjoy!

This will become addictive, I am sure.  So go ahead, pop away and toss and have your snacks!  A great one to take tailgating and assemble at the site or enjoy at home.

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Tailgating is here!

Football time!  We are officially in football frenzy.  Everywhere you look football is on tv.  Even still Classic Football games are still being played.  Reruns of the weekend’s games are being played (if you wish to watch the agony and defeat…again, unless yours was a winning team).  Also, the chase is on.  If you follow Nascar, the race for the chase is on.  So, there is plenty to get excited about.  Me, I just love to hear it on tv.  I don’t get too upset over a win or loss.  I just quilt, and cook, and try to train the dog for his obedience class (that’s another story for another day).

But this will definitely be on our table for tailgating at David’s games.  Me oh my.  Someone will have to help eat this because I could eat the whole bowl.  And the cheese, this type of cheese is what makes this.

There are cheese spreads, pimento cheese recipes, but then there’s this.  And I have fallen in love with this.  And there’s no turning back.  If you serve this, you will be the star.  Trust me on this.  But make sure they know there’s heat in it.  In a good way.  Man, oh man, oh man.  Is it good.

Call it Cheese Spread, call it Pimento cheese, call it cheese dip, or serve a big dollop on your tailgate burger. Make you a Panini out of it. Or a regular sammy – or just serve a dollop by the side of your chicken salad.  Dip it up with crackers.  Dip it up with chips.  Just serve it.

Hot Buffalo Wing Pimento Cheese

Here’s how I made it –

I bought this cheese –

cheese

I grated it up – it’s a softer cheese but it still will grate fine –

In the bowl with the grated cheese, I also grated about a teaspoon of onion.  Feel free to finely chop yours.  You don’t need much – just a smidgen to add another layer of flavor.   I added two ounces of chopped pimentos (you can get a 2 ounce jar – just drain – if you can’t find the 2 ounce jar just use half of the four ounce jar), added about 1-2 tablespoons of worcestershire sauce (I usually add the 2 tbsp as we like the flavor), a pinch of salt and pepper (did you know adding a pinch of salt and pepper to your pimento cheese makes a big difference), and just enough mayonnaise to bring it all together.   Nothing else is needed.  It’s all in the cheese!  Just refrigerate till you serve – if you can wait that long!

cheese spread

Hope you will give it a try – I found this cheese in the specialty cheese section at the commissary.  You should be able to find it around town or something pretty close.  Have a spiffy super duper great week!

Winners and Spiced Applesauce

First, the giveaway winners….I know you would want to know that first!

The two winners who will be enjoying the Taste of Alabama BBQ are:

Random.org first pick:  #16-Charlotte

Random.org second pick: #13-Denise

I will get your prize to you sometime next week!  Congratulations! And let us know how you like your sauces!

Now…. This applesauce. Man.  Chunky, and oh so easy.  Crock pot easy!   No kidding.   Your kiddos will love it.

Serve it on toast, serve it on pancakes, Smear it on a big old biscuit, on top of some yogurt, or as a side dish with some grilled pork tenderloin.   Good stuff.  And you know I made mine healthy with Splenda so hubby and I could eat it.

Try it and I am telling you…you will love it.  So much more flavor than any you buy in the store and with the apple slices left chunky you are getting the best of both worlds.  Like eating apple pie without the crust.

If you want to make it the regular way, just leave out the splenda sugars and use 1/2 to 3/4 cup of regular sugar, and everything else is the same.  The recipe below is what I used.

Spiced Chunky Applesauce

12 cups peeled, cored ad thinly sliced apples = recommend using either Fuji or Golden Delicious apples and it will take about 9-12 apples depending on the size of the apple to get 12 cups out of the apples-

(a trick to keeping them from turning brown while slicing all these apples up is have a big bowl of salt water handy and put the thin slices in them as you slice them – won’t turn.   You can use this method to slice your apples and put in refrigerator overnight and then pack them for your kiddo’s lunch the next day.  Won’t turn. And the salt adds a great flavor to the apple.)

1/2 cup Splenda sugar (or 1/s cup regular sugar if you prefer)

3 Tbsp Splenda brown sugar (omit if you are using regular sugar – I used this to help thicken the sauce)

1/2 tsp ground cinnamon (I used a little more and you can, too, if you want a little more spice flavor in it-i thought it needed it)

1 cup water

1 Tbsp fresh lemon juice

Fresh ground nutmeg (optional, but I recommend a small bit- sure added just a bit more flavor)

Add apple slices to crock pot.  Combine sugar(s) and cinnamon and add to apple slices and stir to coat apples.

Stir in water, lemon juice and the nutmeg if using.  Cover and cook on high 2 1/2 to 3 1/2 hours or on low 5 to 7 hours.  Stir for a chunky sauce.   Serve hot or cold.

applesauce

Doesn’t that look good?   I let mine cook 6 hours and it is perfect.  So good.   Try this. I can assure you it will please every member in your family.  Enjoy this beautiful weather this weekend!

I’m back! Along with a Great Alabama Giveaway!

I haven’t been sick or missing.  We went on a trip – a wonderful time in Colonial Williamsburg!  What history!  Now if I had just studied in school! HA!.  Really, if you have never been, you should plan a trip.  The Historical Triangle is something to be seen.  We also went to the Military Transportation Museum along with the Mariner’s Museum.  Great times and memories.

And since there were only three people that commented on the Pioneer Woman’s new line of kitchen ware, guess what??!!  ALL THREE CAN EXPECT A SURPRISE COMING SOON TO THEM! That would be Disney World Diva, grandmaappleton, and ChristiL! Thanks for commenting and thanks for reading and following! I will do a giveaway later in the year again on her items that are just heartwarming.

Now for this giveaway…. Alabama hails to have some pretty good eats – from BBQ to BBQ sauce to cheese biscuits to peanuts (go Birmingham – if you have never been to downtown Birmingham and smelled those peanuts roasting, you are missing out).

So… I am giving away two packages that contain…

Batch-AL-BBQ-product

It will contain a little of all Alabama has to offer – Jim & Nick’s biscuit mix, Birmingham’s peanuts, Wickles, Saw’s Sauce, Gibson’s Alabama White Sauce, well, you get the picture!  a bit of Alabama history!

Want a chance to win one of two packages of the above?   Just leave a comment and tell us your favorite BBQ joint in Alabama!   Two winners will be selected Friday.  Thanks everyone!

A breakfast casserole for any time of the day

Y’all.  This casserole.  Don’t just serve it for breakfast.  Serve it for brunch, lunch, supper, Christmas morning, Easter morning, your birthday, someone’s birthday you don’t even know!

Just serve it.  Throw it together the night before, bake it the next morning.  Done.  Enjoy.   What’s easier than that?   I am such an airhead I took no pictures.  None. Nada.  So that means you need to make it so you can see how beautiful it cooks up.

Steak and Eggs Breakfast Casserole

2 pounds sirloin (or ribeye) cut into 1 inch cubes

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon ground black pepper

1/2 tsp smokehouse black pepper (optional but I included it)

3 Tbsp vegetable oil

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 onion, chopped

1 red bell pepper, chopped (or use tri colored mix of peppers!)

1 (14-ounce) package English muffins, torn into 1 inch pieces

1 (8-ounce) pkg shredded monterey jack/colby cheese blend

1 (8 oz) pkg shredded sharp cheddar cheese

1 1/2 tsp Italian seasoning

12 large eggs

2 cups half and half

1/2 cup whole milk

In a large bowl, combine steak, salt, pepper(s) and toss gently to coat.  I also threw in a small bit of garlic powder.  You can flavor yours as you wish.  You want the steak to sear with flavor.

In a large skillet, heat oil and add steak.  Sear for about 3 minutes.  Add the garlic, onion, and bell pepper and cook for a couple of more minutes.  In a 3 quart baking dish (I used a deep 9×13 glass dish place torn english muffins on bottom; top with steak mix and sprinkle evenly with cheeses. Sprinkle top of cheeses with italian seasoning.  I actually used probably about 2 tsp of italian seasoning.  This is a big casserole and a lot of eggs!

In a large bowl, beat all 12 eggs, the half and half and the whole milk until smooth.  I also added just a bit of salt and pepper to the eggs.  I like to flavor all layers.  slowly pour over the casserole.  Cover and let stand overnight or 8 hours (make in the morning, bake for supper!).  Remove and let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes before baking.

Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour and 10 minutes to 1 hour and 20 minutes.   cover with aluminum foil if necessary to prevent over-browning.  I did bake mine the full hour and 20 minutes and I did cover with foil after about 50 minutes of baking.  It came out so golden brown and fluffy and beautiful.  It was a big hit at Sunday School.

Pioneer Woman has come out with her new line of kitchenware.  Gorgeous glassware, beautiful dishes.  If you have not seen them, go to her website http://www.pioneerwoman.com and look at them.  Come back and leave me a comment on what is your favorite.  There will be a giveaway on some of her stuff.  I need to know what YOU are liking in her line of new wares!