Friday, December 17, 2010

Reindeer Food...also known as crack

Christmas just isn't Christmas until you've made some Reindeer Food - which is more commonly known amongst my friends as CRACK. They call it that for a reason: It's addictive! Consider yourself warned.


* 4 cups Cheerios
* 4 cups Rice Chex
* 2 + cups of mini pretzels
* 1 bag Christmas M&M's
* 1.5 cups lightly salted peanuts
* 1 package almond bark
* red & green sugars


1. Mix the Cheerios, Chex, pretzels, M&M's and peanuts in a LARGE bowl. (The biggest one you've got).

2. In a separate, microwave safe bowl, melt the almond bark. Start by microwaving for 1 min. and stir. Continue in 30 second increments until almond bark is melted & smooth.

3. Pour almond bark into bowl of Cheerio mixture. Mix very carefully or you'll make a huge mess! Quickly spread mixture into a thin layer on wax paper and generously sprinkle with red & green sugar.

4. Allow to dry completely while trying not to eat it all.

My Tid-Bits:

* I usually package this in cellophane bags & give it away as gifts to friends & co-workers at Christmastime.

* Feel free to adjust the dry ingredients to your liking. I add extra pretzels!

On another note...I have been such a blog slacker lately and for that I apologize. However, I have an excuse. All I've eaten for the past week is smoothies, yogurt & ice cream. Why? Wisdom teeth removal. Enough said. I promise to share more Christmas goodies next week!

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Thanksgiving & Hot Crab Dip

I'm finally getting around to doing a Thanksgiving post. I know I'm behind! We had a wonderful Thanksgiving at our house with some of my dad's family. We had 8 people for dinner, but with as much the food as we cooked, we could have easily fed 16. Sometimes my mom & I have a tendency to overdo things. (I always say too much is better than not enough).

We turned our breakfast table into a place for appetizers & desserts. We kept the appetizers light with an assortment of cheese & crackers, veggies and a hot crab dip (recipe shared below). The desserts included mini coconut & chocolate fudge pies, pecan tassies, fudge & the oh-so-yummy Pumpkin Gingerbread Trifle.

When the turkey was finally cooked & carved, we sat down at the dining room table (which has been used no more than 15 times in the 5 years we've been married) and enjoyed a HUGE lunch.

We had both turkey & ham, fresh (and canned) cranberry sauce, dressing, rolls, mashed potatoes with chives, a field greens salad with strawberries, green beans with shallots and portobello mushrooms and sweet potato casserole topped with a cornflake/pecan/marshmallow topping. It was all delicious. I ate entirely too much!

After stuffing ourselves, we enjoyed some time visiting & watching football before diving into the trifle. Our wonderful Thanksgiving day was made even better when my beloved Aggies beat the longhorns. WHOOP!! Cotton Bowl, here we come!

After having Thanksgiving week off, I'm trying to get back in the swing of things. The Hubs is happy that I've actually started cooking regular dinner again. Which also means I have recipes to share. For now, I'm going to try & get the rest of my Christmas decorations up so I can clean my house.

Now for the recipe:


Note: The recipe below makes 2 quarts and serves 12 - 16 people. I only made 1/2 of the recipe and it was plenty.


* 1 tablespoon olive oil
* 1 cup chopped onions
* 1 cup chopped red bell peppers
* 1 tablespoon minced garlic
* 2 teaspoons coarse salt
* 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon Emeril's Original Essence
* 1 pound cream cheese, at room temperature
* 1 cup mayonnaise
* 1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
* 1 tablespoon minced scallions
* 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
* 1 pound lump crabmeat, picked through for shells and cartilage
* 1/2 cup saltine or butter cracker crumbs
* 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
* Toast points or crackers, for serving


1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

2. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add onions, bell peppers, garlic, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1 teaspoon Essence. Cook, stirring, until vegetables are soft, 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from heat and set vegetables aside.

3. Place cream cheese, mayonnaise, parsley, scallions, lemon juice, remaining teaspoon salt, and remaining tablespoon Essence in the bowl of a food processor; process until smooth. Transfer mixture to a large bowl. (I just hand mixed all of this in a large mixing bowl).

4. Fold in cooked vegetables...

and crab meat.

5. Transfer to a 2-quart baking dish.
(Or put in a bowl & cover tightly with plastic wrap until you're ready to bake).

6. In a small bowl, mix together breadcrumbs and melted butter; stir to combine. Spread breadcrumb mixture over crabmeat mixture and bake until hot and bubbly, about 30 minutes.

7. Serve with toast points or crackers.