A Good Smack and a Swift Kick is All You Need…

Appetizers / November 2, 2016

Yes, I’m serious! A good smack never hurt anyone. (I hope you don’t bruise easily.) Actually the kind of hit I’m referring to is about flavor! And you thought you’d have to report me. If there’s any policing to be done, it will be to keep your family from asking for these yummy treats OVER AND OVER AGAIN.

Take a look and you’ll understand! The SMACK is a twist on chili, with lots of intense and deep flavors to give you that nice chili/cayenne “hit” you love with the sweetness of carrots, celery, red onion and cool cilantro. It was created because I wanted to use everything remaining in my fridge as well as some straggler packets of Ramen seasoning I just couldn’t seem to throw away.

The other is just so, so full of flavor! It has that KICK you just can’t resist and it’s the perfect appetizer for the fall. Roasted jalapenos with creamy goat cheese and a thyme, scallion white wine vinaigrette. I think I feel like hugging myself.

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Rich beef broth and some Penzys Sate seasoning rounded out the menagerie of flavors for this chili twin. I really loved how the fennel in the ground sausage played against the deep Asian medley of the Sate seasoning. Gulp, gulp, gulp. Soup-erStar Status.

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It’s only a matter of time before you make this your new go-to chili choice. it’s just so well rounded and satisfying. Ya gotta try it.

And look at all that color and crunch and heat on these jalapenos???!!!

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You think you only want one. But you’re wrong. You will eat the whole darn plate if you’re not supervised! The acidity of the dressing, the cool goat cheese, the sweet tomatoes. OH MY GOSH!! Heaven…

Both recipes are below. And since you have been encouraged to SMACK and KICK your guests at your next party, I say do it with abandon!
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Roasted Jalapenos Stuffed with Goat Cheese

And a Scallion Thyme Vinaigrette

Makes 30


Ingredients:

15 large jalapenos, cut and sliced in half lengthwise with all seeds and pith removed
4 oz soft goat cheese
8 San Marzano tomatoes, quartered
1 T fresh thyme
2 scallions cut into thin slices down into the green
½ t garlic powder
¼ C white wine vinegar
2 T light olive oil
½ t salt, ¼ t pepper


Direction:

  • On a baking sheet covered with foil, place each cleaned half of jalapeno open side up on the sheet. Roast for no more than 20 minutes at 450 degrees F or until the stems char. Let cool. Fill with the soft cheese. Arrange on a plate and put one small tomato on each one. Then ladle the vinaigrette over the top and lightly sprinkle with coarse sea salt. SERVE!

Pepper, Scallion and Chèvre Frittata

With Hot Sausage Medallions, Raspberries and Thai Chili Maple Syrup

Serve 4
Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 30


Ingredients:

1 package Jimmy Dean Hot Sausage
1/3 C maple syrup
1/3 C Thai Sweet Chili Sauce
T fresh chopped thyme
2 t fresh chopped rosemary needles
6 eggs
¼ C heavy cream
One quarter of a yellow, red and green pepper, julienned
into 3 inch stalks
2 large scallions, julienned into 3 inch stalks and reserve
the very ends for garnish if desired
1 small yellow squash, cut the same way as the other
vegetables (In total, you’ll have about 2 C veggies)
4 oz fresh chèvre. (Goat cheese in the package, not the
feta chunks.)
1 carton fresh raspberries
1 t salt, ½ t pepper or more to taste
3 – 4 T olive oil


Instruction:

  • Prep vegetables, whisk eggs and cream and set aside. Then take the sausage and roll into small, 1 inch diameter balls. I used only about ¾ of the package and it made 16 small ones, but you may want more. Cook them until almost done. Remove from pan and drain. Wipe most of the oil out of the pan, but not all of the fun meat bits. Then add the chili sauce and the maple syrup and then put the sausage back in. Turn heat to low, and cover. When it starts to bubble, it is ready. Set aside/keep warm and reheat if needed when plating.
  • Preheat a 9 inch, oven safe saucepan, and add the olive oil. Add the veggies and the onions and sauté on medium high until transparent with a bit of browning. But don’t cook them to soft. Add S and P and right before adding eggs, fold in herbs. Then add the eggs and turn the heat down to medium low. In about a minute or two, the bottom will be set and you will see a tiny bit of set egg around the edges. Don’t blend or scrape. Take off the heat and dot with chunks of the chèvre cheese. Place in a preheated 400 degree oven and cook until the center is done and it’s a bit brown on the edges.
  • To plate, place a wedge of frittata on the plate, add a few of the sausage medallions and then drizzle with the chili syrup, the raspberries and fresh herbs.


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