I made these as an after school snack for the boys. When I handed them to Kyle I said, "Don't they look like little sailboats?". He responded, "No, they look like the Pope's hat!! Salsa and Cheese Boats (or Papal hats)!
Here's what you need (I didn't give measurements because you can make as many as you want!):
Kyle's birthday cake! I used two boxed yellow cake mixes, so I cheated a little! The track is homemade marshmallow fondant - the kids love it so I always make extra... The lines on the track are melted white chocolate. The "long jump" is a fruit strip and graham cracker crumbs, and the "hurdles" are white chocolate-covered pretzels!
I adore pearled couscous; even more than regular couscous. I think it's the texture and mouthfeel - it's more satisfying overall. This side dish is incredibly fast and easy - especially because I "cheated" a little and used the seasoned pearled couscous.
Turn this into a complete meal by adding chicken or steak!
Pearled Couscous with
Spinach and Herbs
1 box (4.7 ounces) Roasted Garlic and Olive Oil pearled
couscous (or any seasoned variety, including Basil and Herb)
2 cups water
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 cups baby spinach leaves
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
In a medium saucepan, combine the couscous, water and oil
(reserve the seasoning packet). Set the pan over high heat. Bring to a boil.
Reduce the heat to medium-low, partially cover, and simmer for 8 minutes. Add
the seasoning packet and simmer for 5 more minutes, until the couscous is
tender (there will be a little liquid left in the pan). Remove the pan from the
heat, add the spinach, cover and let stand for 5 minutes. Toss gently to
incorporate the spinach into the couscous. Season to taste with salt and
Truth? I've never put cottage cheese in my mac 'n cheese before, but I'm working on a story where I'm adding "retro" ingredients to modern favorites. Cottage cheese came to mind, and I decided to fold it into another retro favorite.
The result is really cool! The cottage cheese not only cuts out a lot of fat, it adds a creaminess you wouldn't get otherwise. It's spectacular!
Cheddar Mac 'n Cheese (with Cottage Cheese!)
12 ounces elbow macaroni
2 cups low-fat milk
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese
1 cup low-fat cottage cheese
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/2 teaspoon paprika, regular or smoked
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
3 tablespoons panko bread crumbs
1-2 tablespoons grated parmesan cheese
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Coat a baking dish with
Cook the elbow macaroni according to the package directions.
Drain and return the pasta to the pot.
Heat 1 1/2 cups of the milk in a medium saucepan over
medium-high heat. Heat until tiny bubbles appear around the edges. Whisk the
flour into the remaining 1/2 cup of milk and add the mixture to the hot milk.
Cook, stirring constantly with a wire whisk, for 2 to 3 minutes, until the
mixture thickens. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the cheddar cheese
and cottage cheese. Stir until cheese has mostly melted. Fold in the Dijon
mustard, paprika, salt, and pepper. Add the mixture to the cooked pasta and
stir to combine.
Transfer the mixture to the prepared pan and top with the panko
bread crumbs and parmesan cheese.
Who wants wings? These wings are downright amazing. Why? Because the glaze is a sweet and savory blend of apricot preserves, soy and sesame. A little Asian flare puts them in the "truly unique" category. Plus, they're baked, so they're healthier and there's no messy cleanup afterwards! Note 1: This recipe can easily be doubled or tripled to serve a crowd.
Note 2: Once the chicken wings are coated with the apricot preserve-hot sauce mixture, you can marinate them (in the refrigerator) for up to 24 hours before baking; this makes them great for prepping ahead for a party.
Apricot-Glazed Chicken Wings with
Blue Cheese-Wasabi Dip
1 cup apricot
teaspoon soy sauce
teaspoon sesame oil
chicken wings and drummettes, wing tips trimmed and discarded if necessary
freshly ground black pepper
crumbled blue cheese
teaspoons wasabi paste
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Place a
baking rack on top of a foil-lined baking sheet and spray the rack with cooking
spray (don’t forget the foil – the apricot glaze that hits the baking sheet
blackens from the sugars – it would be a nightmare to clean up).
In a shallow dish, whisk together the apricot
preserves, hot sauce and sesame oil.
Add the chicken wings and drummettes and
turn to coat.
Transfer the chicken to the prepared
baking rack, reserving the leftover marinade.
Bake for 20 minutes.
Brush with the reserved marinade and bake
another 20 to 25 minutes, until the chicken is cooked through and the skin is
To make the dip, combine the sour cream,
blue cheese and wasabi and mix well.