CIC: Apples & Chives

CIC-header

The ingredients I voted for actually won this month’s Crazy Ingredient Challenge! It did come down to a one vote swing though for the chives over graham crackers. I have to say, graham crackers and apples wouldn’t be that “crazy” so I’m glad chives took the lead.

I didn’t think this combination would be too difficult though. I ended up being surprised. I kept thinking of some sort of tart or pie type dessert, but honestly, I didn’t have the time (or energy) for that. I then decided to try making an apple jelly with chives. I found a two-ingredient jelly using just apple juice and honey and thought, “Now that I have time for!” I think I cooked the mixture too long because what I ended up with something closer to a candy. Had I realized it was candy I wouldn’t have put it in an ice cream dish to cool and instead have spread it on a baking sheet. The aforementioned ice cream dish was sacrificed to the garbage can (good thing it was a 59 cent thrift store find!). It was now back to the drawing board.

I settled on an Apple and Cheddar muffin recipe. I simply swapped cinnamon for chives. The batter really reminded me of a corn bread (although with flour instead of cornmeal) so I decided to bake these in my Mini Loaf Pan instead of a muffin tin. But then I ran into a dilemma of what to call these guys! They weren’t flakey enough to be biscuits, but lighter than a savory scone would be, and it wasn’t a muffin at this point. So… mini loaves it is!

We loved these mini loaves. They were a great accompaniment to some buttermilk brined chicken and green beans. The loaves were also begging to be dunked in a warm bowl of soup or chili or paired with eggs in the morning. I found them best eaten the same day however the do warm up nicely in the microwave.

Apple Cheddar Chive Mini Loaves

Ingredients:

  • 2 C flour
  • 1/3 C sugar
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 C shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1/3 C shredded Parmesan cheese
  • 1 tbsp chopped fresh chives
  • 1 egg
  • 1 C buttermilk
  • 1/4 C vegetable oil
  • 1 large Granny Smith apple, peeled

Steps:

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Lightly grease a 9-well mini loaf pan or a 12-well muffin pan.
  2. In a large bowl whisk together flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Stir in the cheese.
  3. In a small bowl whisk the egg with buttermilk and oil. Stir into the dry ingredients.
  4. Shred the apple over the bowl and fold into the batter.
  5. Pour batter into prepared pan. Bake 20 minutes, until a toothpick comes out cleanly. Allow loaves to cool in the pan 5-10 minutes before transferring to a cooling rack.

*This recipe is adapted from http://www.tasteofhome.com/recipes/apple-cheddar-muffins*

Apple Cheddar Chive Mini Loaves for Crazy Ingredient Challenge from Sew You Think You Can Cook

To see the other bloggers who participated in this month’s Crazy Ingredient Challenge click on the link below.

Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links. 

#BrunchWeek: Bacon and Egg Sandwiches on Cheddar Biscuits

We’re continuing with the third annual #BrunchWeek hosted by Terri of Love and Confections and Shaina of Take a Bite out of Boca. I’ve been told you can’t have a brunch event without an egg dish. While I could easily disagree, I can see my mom’s point. Most people love eggs and eat them daily for breakfast. I have never been in that camp.

So what to do?

The only egg dish I’ve ever liked (and have even ordered at a brunch place!) is Eggs Benedict. I tried my hand at making Eggs Benedict at home before, and we loved them! But poaching the eggs and making the hollandaise sauce requires too much active attention; I won’t be attempting it again until the little man can play on his own (or takes longer naps…) safely.

Instead I decided on a breakfast sandwich, one I could make each element of separately.

I caramelized some onions and wilted in some kale. I used my mandolin to slice some Easter egg radishes provided by Cal-Organic. I fried up some bacon and some eggs.

To make my sandwiches a step above the rest, I assembled them on top of homemade cheddar biscuits – using Cabot Cheese Seriously Sharp Cheddar.

cheddar biscuits from sew you think you can cook for #brunchweek

Using a 3″ biscuit cutter, this recipe yields 18-20 biscuits.

Cheddar Biscuits

Ingredients:

  • 9 tbsp butter
  • 2 1/2 C flour
  • 1 C white whole wheat flour
  • 2 tbsp baking powder
  • 2 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 C shredded Seriously Sharp Cheddar
  • 1 1/2 C buttermilk
  • 1 egg, beaten for egg wash

Steps:

  1. Cut butter into cubes and set aside.
  2. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt.
  4. With the paddle attachment mix in the butter and shredded cheese. Mix until combined and texture is crumbly.
  5. Pour in buttermilk and mix until dough comes together.
  6. Turn out onto a floured surface and knead until combined. Pat to 3/4″ thick. Use a 3″ biscuit cutter to cut biscuits and place on prepared baking sheets. (Note: Do not twist the cutter, doing so will pinch the edges and you won’t have that flaky biscuit.)
  7. Brush biscuits with egg wash. Bake for 20-25 minutes.
  8. To make sandwiches: Cut biscuit in half. Top one half with caramelized onions, wilted kale, and a fried egg. Top the other half with a drizzle of honey, bacon, and thinly sliced radishes. Reassemble and enjoy.

*The biscuit recipe is adapted from Donya at http://asouthern-soul.blogspot.com/2013/04/cheddar-cheese-biscuits.html?*

Bacon and Egg Sandwiches on Cheddar Biscuits for #BrunchWeek from Sew You Think You Can Cook

Don’t forget to enter our giveaway and be sure to check out the other bloggers who posted more brunch recipes today:

BrunchWeek 2015 Logo
BrunchWeek Beverages:
Mango Swirled Coconut Margarita from The Little Ferraro Kitchen.
Bruleed Grapefruit Mojito from Healthy Delicious.
Strawberry Orange Blossom Sparkler from Baking a Moment.

BrunchWeek Egg Dishes:
Bacon and Egg Sandwiches on Cheddar Biscuits from Sew You Think You Can Cook.

BrunchWeek Breads, Grains and Pastries:
Lemon Blueberry Crepes from Love and Confections.
Java Jolt Overnight Oats from Take A Bite Out Of Boca.
Hagelslag-Covered Bread from Culinary Adventures with Camilla.
Nutella Stuffed Aebleskiver from greens & chocolate.
Baked French Toast Boats from The Spiffy Cookie.
Skinny Banana Oat Flaxseed Cookies from Hip Foodie Mom.
Cinnamon Sugar French Toast Sticks from Making Miracles.
Cheddar Pear Proscuitto Pull-Apart Bread from It Bakes Me Happy.
Alpine Cheese Grisini from Jane’s Adventures in Dinner.

BrunchWeek Main Dishes:
Bacon Cheddar Hashbrown Pancake from Pink Cake Plate.
Huevos Rancheros Burgers from The Redhead Baker.

BrunchWeek Fruits, Vegetables and Sides:
Fresh Mint and Orange Blossom Fruit Salad from Sarcastic Cooking.
Citrus and Cilantro Carrot Slaw from A Day in the Life on the Farm

BrunchWeek Desserts:
Mini Apple Pear Pies from Quarter Life (Crisis) Cuisine.
Strawberry Cake from Chelsea’s Messy Apron.
Chocolate Chip Walnut Coffee Cake from girlichef.
Raspberry Oatmeal Bars from My Catholic Kitchen.

Disclaimer: Thank you to #BrunchWeek Sponsors: Bob’s Red Mill, Cabot Creamery Cooperative, California Walnuts, Dixie Crystals, Grimmway Farms/Cal-Organic/True Juice, KitchenAid, Le Creuset, Nielsen-Massey Vanillas, Pacari Chocolate, Stonyfield Organic, Vidalia Onions, and Woot Froot for providing the prizes free of charge. These companies also provided the bloggers with samples and product to use for #BrunchWeek. All opinions are my own.

#10DaysofTailgate: Corn and Cheddar Dip

Tailgate Logo

Today marks day five of #10DaysofTailgate hosted by Camilla of Culinary Adventures with Camilla! Hopefully you followed yesterday even though I took a mini break from the event to celebrate my brother-in-law’s birthday. If you didn’t, follow this link to Camilla’s page to check out the wonderful tailgating displays from day four’s tailgating spread.

For my birthday this year we went to my parents’ lake house in Lake Geneva, WI. While we were there we had a huge “meet and greet” for the family to come on out to the lake and see the newest addition to the family, my son Wesley. The rain stayed away and we had a wonderful time in the backyard with food and drinks. A family tailgate, if you will!

One of my cousins brought a dip over that I’d never had before. It was a cold corn dip with shredded cheddar cheese. She told me the list of ingredients and I knew I would have to try and recreate it for #10DaysofTailgate. The ingredient list included cayenne pepper – but I knew that I would be spicing my dip up with a different secret weapon – Carrot Karma hot sauce by the Intensity Academy.

Intensity AcademyWhen I discovered that I’d be receiving a bottle of carrot based hot sauce, the first question out of my aunt’s mouth was “How do you make hot sauce of out carrots?!” I can’t answer that question, but I do know that the Intensity Academy uses all natural ingredients. Their philosophy is “Through the perfect karma of good foods, one meets the Perfect Guru, whose taste is intense.” The level of heat in this hot sauce is perfect, it’s mild enough for people afraid of spicy foods yet lends perfect flavor for that little somethin’ somethin’. And when people ask you, “What is that?” you’ll be able to surprise them with a reply of “carrot hot sauce!”

Corn and Cheddar Dip

Ingredients:

  • 1 can (15.25 oz) Southwest Corn with Poblano and Red Peppers, drained
  • 1 1/2 C shredded mild cheddar cheese
  • 3 scallions, chopped
  • 1/8 C mayonnaise
  • 1/8 C sour cream
  • 1 – 1 1/4 tsp Carrot Karma Hot Sauce (depending on your heat preference)
  • 1/4 tsp salt

Steps:

  1. In a large bowl gently stir together corn, cheese, and scallions.
  2. In a small bowl whisk together mayonnaise, sour cream, hot sauce, and salt. Add more hot sauce to taste.
  3. Pour mayo mixture over corn mixture and gently mix until combined. Keep refrigerated until ready to serve. Remix dip to break it up before serving.
  4. Serve with your favorite tortilla chips.

Corn and Cheddar Dip

Thank you Michele for sponsoring our event.

Disclaimer: I was provided a bottle of Carrot Karma hot sauce through this event, however all opinions and statements are my own.

Don’t forget to enter our giveaway and be sure to check out the other bloggers who posted more tailgating recipes today:

Starters
Cherry Chipotle BBQ Pork Nachos by The Spiffy Cookie
Duck Poppers by CafeTerra
Duck Bacon Pumpkin Soup by Culinary Adventures with Camilla
Dips
Steakhouse Deviled Egg Dip by From Gate to Plate
Mains
Ultimate Bacon Burger by Cheese Curd In Paradise
Cincinnati Turkey Chili by The Pajama Chef
Smoky Date Pulled Pork by Curious Cuisiniere
Sides
Just Ducky Baked Beans by A Day in the Life on the Farm
Sweets
Linebacker-Sized Chocolate Chip Cookies by Things I Make (for Dinner)
Rocky Ledge Bars by Debbi Does Dinner Healthy
Pear Poppy Snails {Birnen Mohn Schnecken} by The Not So Cheesy Kitchen
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Cheddar Cheese Popcorn

I had so much fun making different flavored popcorns leading up to the Super Bowl, but there was one major flavor that I didn’t make. Cheddar Cheese! I had planned on it, but as I couldn’t find the powdered cheese at any of my local stores I had to order it off Amazon (Kraft Cheese Powder) and because I procrastinated in ordering, I didn’t get it in time. But I knew that an orange colored popcorn could be a great tie in to basketball and March Madness!

march madness

While basketball isn’t my favorite sport, I do get into creating a bracket for the tournament. If you are creating a bracket, Selection Sunday is tomorrow March 16th and the first round begins March 20th. The tournament continues until April 7th when the Championship Game will be played.

Cheddar Cheese Popcorn

Ingredients:

  • canola oil, enough to coat bottom of pot
  • 2/3 C popcorn kernels
  • 6 tbsp butter, melted
  • 2/3 C cheddar cheese powder
  • 1 tsp dry mustard

Steps:

  1. Put canola oil in pot along with 2-3 kernels of popcorn. Cover and stand by. Once you hear the kernels pop, add the popcorn. Cover and cook over medium heat until popping slows. Gently shake the pop during the popping process so as not to burn the popcorn at the bottom. Remove from heat and remain covered until popping has ceased, unless you want to be pelted with popcorn. (If you have another method of popping popcorn, feel free to use it.)
  2. In a small bowl whisk together cheddar cheese powder and mustard.
  3. In a large bowl toss popcorn in butter. Once coated add the cheese mixture, toss to coat evenly.

*This recipe is adapted from Anisa at http://whiskandheels.com/kitchen/cheesiest-cheddar-popcorn*

Cheddar Popcorn 1 Cheddar Popcorn 2 Cheddar Popcorn 3

P.S. – My keyboard may or may not be covered in cheddar cheese dust at the moment…. This is like the CHEETOS® version of Popcorn!

Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links.