Archive for the ‘Recipes’ Category

The best Cranberry Relish v2.0 – The Adult Version

Everything you loved about my viral ultimate cranberry recipe but kicked up to an adult version with the addition of bacon, bourbon and heat!  Seriously addictive, deliciously simply!

If you’re a fan of that jellified, squishy, ridiculously odd-textured cranberry jelly that comes from a can then this recipe isn’t for you. No, this recipe is for the brave, the adventurous and the rebels out there. Or… pretty much for anyone that wants a freaking killer cranberry relish recipe with a twist. This is that cranberry relish you’d expect to find at some gnarly hole-in-the-wall dive bar that makes some of the best underground foods. It’s simplistic and almost delicate looking but that’s where the princessness stops and the fierce biker babe comes into play.

Wait so does that mean I just gave my cranberry relish a gender?  Is it a girl? *shrugs* sure why not. LOL It’s pretty, sexy and alluring on the outside but on the inside it’s wicked and bold. I’m down with that.

The best Cranberry Relish v2.0 - The Adult Version: Cranberry Relish with Bacon Bourbon and Red Pepper

I actually have been making this version for a few years as I wanted a more in-your-face version. Oh don’t get me wrong, I still freaking LOVE my original recipe but ever since making my spicy red pepper jelly, I couldn’t help but wonder what this relish would taste like if I added some heat to it. And since I can’t leave well enough alone AND bacon pretty much is the best thing in the world (next to my husband and teacup pigs.. oh and Channing Tatum dancing) I decided it needed bacon in it. And since you all know how much I love the combination of bourbon and bacon, I had to add me some Kentucky straight bourbon to the pot.

This relish seriously will take over your life and blow your mind!

Spiced Pear & Shallots Chutney

The warm notes of ginger, cinnamon and nutmeg paired with the sweetness of the pears and shallots are exactly what your pork and chicken dishes need to go from good to WOW!

Are we all done with Pumpkinsanity (pump-k-insanity) yet and everything in the world having to taste like pumpkin spice? I mean when I see my normal box of cereal now offering Pumpkin Spice flakes or O’s I’m like “Done!  I’ve checked out!” Don’t get me wrong. I love pumpkin and pumpkin spice BUT I’d like my tea to taste like tea, my ravioli to not taste like a pumpkin pie and my freaking cereal to taste like bran TYVM. Enough is enough. I mean it’s just too much.

<off her soap box>

Okay I feel better *wink*. Today I’m sharing with you a recipe that honestly came out of a “crap, I need to use up these pears before they go bad and mushy” and my throwing stuff in a pot and hoping for the best. It’s funny as many of my recipes kind of start out that way – a thought and a prayer. As this was simmering away in the pan I decided to whip up some lunch for us. Now thankfully I had pressure cooked a bunch of chicken the night before (for weekly meal prep) and had leftover pork tenderloin which meant I didn’t have to do much work other than re-heat.

Spiced pear & Shallot Chutney

So for years when it came to chicken or pork I’d either eat it with mashed potatoes and gravy (kind of where you take a fork of chicken, shoosh it through the potatoes and gravy and put it all in your mouth at the same time OR I’d dip the meat in ketchup. You can quit making that ‘ewwww’ face now. I love ketchup and growing up in Pittsburgh, having the Heinz facility here, you had to love ketchup and put it pretty much on everything. I merely was doing my part.

While I’m still a ketchup lover, I would choose this recipe over ketchup on my meat!

Side Dishes to rock your Thanksgiving

With Thanksgiving next week go with some new and delicious sides to add to your dinner menu like Green Bean Casserole Stuffed Mushrooms or Creamy Corn Casserole!

So wow, Thanksgiving is next week. Holy Crap! When did that happen? But I’m happy though as I’m ahead of the game. I have my turkey already bought, have my meal planned out and what sides I’m serving too! He wants cheesecake and I want pumpkin pie which means I’ll make 2 small ones and end up taking the rest to his parents. Sadly his parents don’t come to our house for Thanksgiving and I hate leaving the house a holiday which means Mama Fantabulous cooks for her other 2 sons and I cook for us.

Now when it comes to Thanksgiving I still make my standards – creamy mashed potatoes, candied sweet potatoes and stuffing but that’s where I stop. Years ago I started a new tradition where I would introduce one new side to every holiday meal either replacing one (i.e., my Mom’s boiled cauliflower and 47 pounds of butter) or adding a new one (creamy corn casserole).

Thanksgiving Side Dishes

Thanksgiving requires green bean casserole and I’m sorry but once I created a grown-up version of it, I can’t do the standard canned soup recipes. The canned soup is great in a pinch but homemade is a bajillion times better. Plus I’m huge on presentation and you just can’t make green bean casserole “pretty”. However I give you 2 different variations of it – one with the sauce ladled over top and another with the mushrooms actually stuffed with green bean casserole. Stuffed inside… dwell on that people!
What’s your must-have Thanksgiving side dish?

Go Crazy & Jelly Bars (Cookie Butter Peanut Butter & Jelly Crack Bars)

Taking PB&J to a whole new level! Crunchy chocolate pretzel crust, raspberry awesomeness, creamy ‘butter’ filling, and decadent chocolate ganache make these bars over the top CRAZY!

So this recipe is one of those “I need something sweet and I don’t care if I have to eat peanut butter out of the jar” type of recipes. Actually full disclosure, that’s how this recipe came to be. I was starving and wanted something sweet but also something fast. Peanut butter!  Peanut butter is my go-to dessert/sweet/protein/just-get-it-in-my-mouth-as-fast-as-possible food. I was in my kitchen, working on some recipes but didn’t have time to make myself something real to eat so out came the spoon and jar of peanut butter.

Yes, I’m one of THOSE people who eat peanut butter out of the jar. It’s my jar so I can do whatever I want. So I’m sitting there, happy as a little piggy with a newly found mud puddle when I “accidentally” grabbed the spoon from the jar of cookie butter. It wasn’t intentional though I can’t say if it wasn’t subliminal. Anyway I was like “OH! Well that’s a nice surprise!” You see I was working on my Ultimate Cookie Butter Cream pie and had it out along with a big bowl of ganache at the time.

Go Crazy & Jelly Bars - Cookie Butter Peanut Butter & Jelly Crack bars

So there I am, in the kitchen a spoon in each hand and a fretted look on my face as I really needed a third hand to scoop the ganache. That’s when I decided to whip up a few buckeyes. Well about halfway through making the filling I decided to incorporate the cookie butter and then I realized I needed a textural element thus the pretzels. See while I like traditional buckeyes, I prefer a crunch to them so often I’ll add pretzels to it or rice cereal.

Whether you go straight cookie butter, peanut butter or both, you’re going to love these bars!

Caramel Pumpkin Dinner Rolls featuring Goetze’s Vanilla Caramel Creams®

Hands down the BEST dinner roll I have ever eaten in my entire life! Super light and fluffy, caramel pumpkin dinner rolls made with Vanilla Caramel Creams® candies!

This post is being sponsored by Goetze’s Candy Company featuring their Vanilla Caramel Creams® candies (which are seriously one of the best candies on the face of the planet!).  All opinions of these ABSOLUTELY AMAZING candies are mine.

Oh people when I tell you that these rolls are the absolute best dinner rolls I have ever made or eaten in my life, trust me on this!  I mean these blow away the ones my Mom made for decades (sorry Mom!). They are so soft and fluffy that they almost melt in your mouth when you eat them!  And the flavor!  You best sit down when you eat one as they are going to knock you for a loop!  We’re talking ‘Lord have mercy’ rolls! Now I know you may be thinking “can’t I just buy those pre-made/frozen ones?” and the answer is no. Seriously while those are good in a pinch, nothing, NOTHING beats the flavor of a homemade roll. ESPECIALLY when they are made with pumpkin and these vanilla caramel cream candies. It seriously is a game changer in the world of breads/rolls/carbs in general.

Caramel Pumpkin Dinner Rolls featuring Goetze's Vanilla Caramel Creams® width=

As you know I’ve been fortunate to have partnered up with such an incredible company as Goetze’s Candy on a few other recipes. They’ve been making candy for almost 120 years people – you know they’ve been doing this candy business thing right!  It’s made right here in the USA and for those of you that have nut allergies you don’t have to worry about these candies as they are made in a nut-free facility.

Seriously, you’re going to fall in love with these rolls!

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