Cream Cheese,Garlic, & Veggie Bagel Spread

 Bagel Spread




Cream Cheese, Garlic, & Veggie Bagel Spread 
My sister and I love going to Lewisburg, PA when we get the chance. Lewisburg is home to Bucknell University, so it’s a cute little college town! One of our favorite places to visit is a little bagel shop. This bagel shop makes the most amazing bagel spreads. They have everything from sweet Oreo cookie spread to a more savory vegetable spread. I recently tried the vegetable spread and fell in love! I knew I needed to recreate the recipe and that’s exactly what I did! In my opinion, it’s even better than the bagel shop. Not only is it delicious, but it has a super yummy superfood blend in it. That totally cancels out the fatty cream cheese and carb-filled bagels, right? So, not only does this taste good, but it’s sort of good for you due to the superfood blend.
This spread has become a staple in our home. My husband has been asking me to make it constantly. Thankfully, it’s super easy to make so I don’t mind. And, if I’m being honest, I’ve been craving it just as much as he has! Plus, I like that I can make a batch of it at the beginning of the week and have breakfast all week for everyone. At this point, we might have to buy some stock in a bagel company. It’s so good that we’ve been eating it for both breakfast and late night snacks! I will warn you though – this cream cheese will give you some wicked breath! You might need to brush your teeth directly afterward! The other downside to this recipe is that since it’s so amazing, my husband is constantly toasting bagels. That means that he’s also messing with the toaster dial! There are two things that are totally non-negotiable in a marriage – no touching the toaster dial, and no touching the thermostat! That may have even been in my wedding vows! Just kidding!
I hope that you enjoy this delicious blend of cream cheeses, superfood, and garlic!


Italian Salad

No Dressing needed salad




Italian Salad

Once in a blue moon, when I decide to torture myself, by cutting carbs out of my diet for a week or two this salad is a life saver. It gives me all the flavors I enjoy in a big meaty hoagie without all the carbs. I know the cheese and salami are fattening but I somehow justify it to myself since I am not layering it all in a carb infested hoagie roll. Also, the fact that this Italian Salad is seasoned to perfection so there really is no need for a fatty dressing is another one of my justifications. Of course, if you feel the need for dressing, a little oil works well. If I were left at home alone with this salad I am confident it would not see the dawn of a new day. But don’t think you have to be on a diet to make this salad. My husband enjoys this salad just as mush as I do and he has never dieted a day in his life! Every time I make this salad I have to leave a fork on the counter. If I didn’t I would have a sink full of forks from me returning to the fridge every 20 minutes to steal a bite. This recipe is also a great way to use up some of those garden tomatoes. I do not care for tomatoes but my husband loves them so I add them anyway. I was raised in a home where if you didn’t like something you picked it out. =p

If you decide to make this Italian Salad I would love to hear back from ya!

Baked Italian Hoagie Sandwiches




Italian Sub

Baked Italian Hoagie Sandwiches

Make these Baked Italian Hoagie Sandwiches for your next family game night or party. Not only are they quick and easy to make but they are also delicious. I have been making these for awhile and they are always a huge hit!

Ingredients:

1  Loaf of Italian Bread

6-7 slices of Deli ham ( Thinly sliced)

8 slices of Hard Salami ( Thinly Sliced)

8 slices of provolone cheese

3-4 Tablespoons of butter

Mayo

Shredded lettuce ( 1 small bag)

1 tomato ( sliced)

1/2 onion ( sliced)

banana peppers ( optional)

Italian Dressing or Oil

Salt & Pepper

Garlic Powder

Directions: 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Slice loaf of Italian bread in half but do not slice completely through. Spread the insides of the bread with butter and put on a cookie sheet buttered sides down. Bake at 350 degrees for 10 minutes or until buttered sides are slightly toasted. Leaving the bread on the cookie sheet, flip the bread so buttered sides are facing up and add as much or as little mayo as you like. Then begin to evenly load the hoagie with ham, salami, and cheese ( in that order). Bake at 350 degrees for 5 minutes or until cheese is melted. Take it out of the oven and load it up with lettuce, tomato, onion, and banana peppers. Sprinkle with salt, pepper, and garlic powder and drizzle with Italian dressing or oil. Cut into sandwich size pieces and serve.





Cheesy Bacon Meatloaf

Meatloaf 1

I wasn’t always a fan of meatloaf growing up if you ever had my mom’s meatloaf you would understand why. Don’t worry, I’m not saying this to be mean, it’s just the truth. If you ask her about her meatloaf she just laughs and says  “well, it’s usually hit or miss”. And if she says it’s a miss, then dominos is on the menu.  It has become the family joke- make whatever for supper mom just not a meatloaf! I do have to say that meatloaf is about the ONLY thing that woman can’t cook.. well.. and turkey, but that’s a whole different story. ha.

Enough about my mom’s meatloaf let’s talk about mine. This flavorful Meatloaf is loaded with chunks of bacon and globs of cheese. The meat is moist and the ends are crispy. Baked to perfection in the oven, this meatloaf is sure to be a family favorite.  Definitely not my Mamma’s meatloaf. 😉

Ingredients:

Meatloaf

2.25 pounds ground beef

1/2 pound of bacon (fried and crumbled.. you could do this the night before)

8 oz of shredded melting cheese ( I use Velveeta)

1/4 tsp. pepper

1 tsp. minced garlic ( you could always use garlic powder if you don’t have minced garlic)

1 tsp. Worcestershire

2 tsp. mustard

1/2 C. Ketchup

2 C. breadcrumbs ( I used seasoned)

3 eggs

Glaze: 

1 C. ketchup

1 tsp. Worcestershire

1 tsp. mustard

1 Tbsp. brown sugar

Directions: Pre-heat oven to 375 degrees

Add all ingredients for the meatloaf to a large mixing bowl. Use your hands to fold the ingredients into the ground beef ( this is going to get messy so you may want to take off your rings). Once all the ingredients are mixed into the meatloaf, place it into a greased 7 X 11 cake pan. I try to shape mine into an oval shape, then I take my hands and press the ends in some. Next, mix up your glaze. Spread the glaze evenly over the top of the meatloaf. Bake uncovered at 375 degrees for 50 minutes to an hour, or until meatloaf is cooked the whole way threw ( a meat thermometer is a good tool to use here). As soon as meatloaf is finished call dibs on the end piece, it’s the best! 😉

*My four Ingredient Mac & Cheese is the perfect side dish for this Meatloaf!


Pre-Thanksgiving day party ~ Turkey recipe & Holland House White Cooking Wine GIVEAWAY!! (Giveaway EXPIRED)

turkey day

And finally I am going to share with you my turkey recipe! I am going to walk you through each step so you will know exactly how it’s done.

 

First let me show you my  two secret weapons… shhh

holland house 101

 

That’s right, I cook my turkey in white cooking wine… and not just any white cooking wine, Holland house cooking wine! I am in love with Holland house cooking wines and I usually keep the white cooking wine on hand. Cooking the turkey in Holland House white cooking wine will give light flavor that will follow throughout your entire holiday meal.

 

 

My second secret weapon is the herb butter I use, recipe as follows:

 

Herb Butter

Ingredients:

2 sticks of butter

2 cloves of garlic

1 Tbsp. Fresh Parsley (minced)

 

Directions

Melt butter till slightly melted, just enough you can smash it with a fork. Using a garlic press, press garlic into the butter. Next add parsley  and use a fork to mix everything well.

turkey 2

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Ok now that you have learned my secrets lets begin prepping this turkey step by step. These directions will be based on a 20-25 pound turkey because I have never cooked anything smaller or there would be some very hungry people!

 

Pre-Heat oven to 450 degrees 

1.) First step is to make sure the turkey is thawed. If it is frozen it usually takes about 5 days to thaw (depending on the size). Follow the directions on the turkey. Check your turkey the day before you cook it to make sure it is completely thawed. If your turkey is still slightly frozen then place the turkey in a clean sink  in it’s original packaging. Fill the sink with cold water till water comes up to the half way point of the turkey then lay a dish towel on top of the turkey. Change the water every 30 – 40 minutes, until turkey is completley thawed. Then place turkey back into the fridge. (I keep my turkey in the roasting pan I use to cook it and then into the fridge, that way if it leaks it leaks in the roasting pan and not all through your fridge)

2.) Once the day has come and your turkey is thawed, unwrap it and place the turkey in a clean sink. Rinse the turkey off using cold water. When you reach inside the turkey you will find the neck, a bag of “guts”, as I call it, and sometimes they put a pack of gravy in there. I always throw the gravy and the bag of guts in the garbage, But I save the neck and put it in the pan with the turkey.

 

3.) Once the turkey has been rinsed, place it on an old dish towel. Next take paper towels and keep patting the turkey dry. You want the turkey to be as dry as possible. I normally use 1 whole roll of paper towels just for patting it dry. You want to use about three paper towels at once because if you use just one it will stick  to the turkey, and you do not want that. Always make sure to keep things sanitary, if you touched the raw bird then touched your roll of paper towels they are no longer good to use on anything other than drying the raw bird. This is why I dedicate 1 whole roll of paper towels to my turkey, what ever I don’t use I throw away, but I normally use all of them.

turkey 1
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4.) Once the turkey has been patted dry. Season the bird on both sides with sea salt and pepper. I normally put my salt and pepper in little dishes that way I do not touch the salt and pepper containers after I have touched the raw bird.

turkey 3

 

 

5.) Using your hands rub the butter mixture all over the bird on both sides. I use all off the butter.
turkey 5

6.) Once you have added the butter to the turkey now it is time to put your stuffing in the bird.

Click here for my – STUFFING RECIPE 

** First I want to stress that it is very very important you add your stuffing right before you put the bird in the oven. Never put your stuffing in the turkey then let it in the fridge till it’s time to cook it, I know that seems like you are saving time but it is very unsanitary and could make you and your guests sick, so lets play it safe. **
To stuff the bird grab a handful of stuffing and form it into a ball, then press it into the turkey, do as many balls of stuffing as you can. You want to press it in but do not pack it in if that makes sense? Just lightly press it into the bird till you have some stuffing peaking out.
stuffing 2

stuffing 3

7.) Now that the bird is prepared, pour 1 1/2  cups of water in the bottom of your roasting pan. Carefully lift turkey and place it in the roasting pan breast up and throw the neck anywhere it fits, usually I put it on the opposite side of the pan as the stuffing. Place a piece of foil over the stuffing only, so it does not burn. Cook the turkey for 40 minutes at 425 degrees.

turkey 12

 

8.) Once the 40 minutes are up turn oven temperature to 250 degrees, when the oven has reached 250 degrees take the bird out of the oven, remove foil and pour 1 1/2 cups of Holland House White Cooking Wine all around the bottom of the roasting pan.

turkey 13

9.) Cook the turkey at 250 degrees for about 5 hours, you will need a turkey baster to remove the juice as it fills the roasting pan. I like to keep the roasting pan at least half way full with with the broth. Once it gets past half full remove util it is half full in a separate pan, let cool and store in the fridge to use for gravy later.

10.) when there are 3 hours left in the cooking time add the bacon. To do this I place the uncooked bacon on a paper plate that has been lined with paper towels, make sure the bacon is flat. Continue to alternate bacon and paper towels until the whole pound of bacon has been prepped on the plate to microwave. You will have a few layers of bacon and paper towels. This is one of the quickest and easiest ways to cook bacon! The microwave cooks it perfectly crisp, while the layers of paper towels soak up all the grease, so that the bacon isn’t lying in a puddle of grease. And the best part? Clean up is a breeze!

turkey 8
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11.) Next line your turkey with the bacon. start at the back and work your way up. You will have a few extra pieces, I just run them the opposite way… the photo should be pretty self explanatory, I hope! =P

turkey 10

12.) Put the turkey back in the oven and continue cooking an addition 3 hours or until turkey has reached a temperature of 170 degrees F. or 77 degrees C. and the stuffing has reached a temperature of at least 165 degrees F.

13.) Take turkey out of the oven and let rest for about 15-20 minutes before carving. Make sure to tent it with a piece of foil to keep it warm while resting.

turkey 20

 

Now that you know how to make a delicious turkey lets get into the Giveaway! I am Giving away 1 bottle of Holland House White Cooking wine courtesy of Holland House to one lucky winner. I will be using Rafflecopterwhich to determine the winner. By entering this contest you agree to Terms & Conditions and Disclaimers & Disclosures 

How to get 5 extra points!!:  To get 5 extra points, Simply tell me one of your favorite holiday memories in the comments below and I will add them to your Rafflecopter points for more chances to win

a Rafflecopter giveaway
   

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention it on my blog. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.” //

Pre-Thanksgiving Day Party! ~ Stuffing Recipe

stuffing

 

So I have decided to kick things of with my stuffing recipe. Every year that’s the one thing people say they crave the most. Once I show you this recipe you will be shocked by the simplicity of it! The question I get asked the most is how I achieve the flavor without sauteing onions and chopping celery? Well I’m about to let you in on my secret. Ok… Here we go, let me break it down for you

 

Ingredients:
2 loaves of white bread (the cheap store brand, that’s what I use)

1 tsp.  Sea Salt

4 pinches of ground celery seed ( It must be ground!)

1/2 tsp. pepper

2 sticks butter

 

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1.) Cut bread into small cubes.
Some people like to tear the bread, I find it much quicker to cut it…much quicker.

*** This is something that can be done 1 – 2 days in advanced. Cut the bread into cubes then place it back into the bread bag it came in, replace the twist tie and you can cross this off the Thanksgiving Day To-Do List!

 

2.) Before you get the turkey out you want to add your spices, you do not want the turkey sitting out of the fridge any longer than necessary! You want to be able to stuff the bird and through it straight into the oven.

– Adding the spices-

***  You want to use a very large bowl for this part. Place the cubed bread into the bowl and add the salt, pepper, & ground celery seed. Use your hands to toss so that spices are evenly distributed throughout the bread cubes.

 

3.) Now is time for the butter, this is the most important part, in my opinion.  Normally it takes about 1 stick of melted per loaf of bread. Here is the trick… and it’s important! Melt the butter in the microwave, slowly pour into the bowl of bread cubes. You want do not want it drenched in butter.. you want to be able to form the stuffing into a ball and have it stay, that means you have the right amount of butter.

stuffing 2

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4.)  Form your stuffing into balls and stuff them into the turkey. You want to press it in so you can get as much into the bird as possible. I had a 22 some pound bird and used about 3/4 of the stuffing made from 2 loaves of bread

stuffing 3

 

5.) Whatever stuffing that did not fit into the bird place into a grease casserole dish… It is hard for me to tell you what size because it just really depends on the size of the bird and how much excess stuffing you have. I did not have much so I used a very small one.

** This is an important tip! For the stuffing that is in the casserole dish, squirt a few basters full of the COOKED turkey juice  onto the stuffing. Just enough to moisten it slightly. This will give it that amazing turkey flavor. Bake stuffing in the oven for about 20 minutes, enough to warm it up. I just through it in when the turkey is almost finished.

 

There you have it, the secret is out! When the turkey comes out you will have a beautiful bird with with this glorious stuffing peaking out making your guest drool!

stuffing 5

Here is a photo of the meal all put together
thanks giving meal final

** Disclosure of Material Connection: I have not received any compensation for writing this post. I have no material connection to the brands, products, or services that I have mentioned. This post does, however, contain ads that I will receive commission for if clicked. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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