Strawberry & Sesame Hand Pies

Flaky crust packed with sweet strawberry preserves and Simply Sesame.  Make up a batch for the busy school week. My son ate these every morning and then again as a snack after school!  Who doesn’t love a portable meal that is a hit with the kids?

Strawberry & Sesame Hand Pies | Bottom Left of the Mitten

I received Simply Sesame® complimentary but all opinions stated in this post are my own.
Interested in learning more about Simply Sesame? Follow them on social media:
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These hand pies are so easy to make and use just a few ingredients.  And let me tell you what made these even easier….my new mixer that I got for Christmas! It’s so beautiful.  Since getting it I’ve done some serious baking.  Enough of the admiration let’s get baking.

strawberryhandpies_1f

Starting with the dough add the ingredients to a mixer.  Or you can mix this by hand as well~before I got my mixer I had no problem whipping up crust for my favorite homemade pizzas.  Check out my directions for a thicker crust on my White Chicken Pizza with Basil & Blackberry Sauce.  A thinner crust for this Pepper Steak Pizza. Or a the crust for a classic favorite, Chicago Deep Dish Pizza.  Either way, this crust turns out perfectly! I’m even using this same recipe to make a special treat soon for Mitten Movie Night.  When the dough has been mixed roll into a ball then onto some plastic wrap that has been lightly floured.  Put the dough into the refrigerate for 1 hour.

Strawberry & Sesame Hand Pies | Bottom Left of the Mitten

Once chilled it’s time to roll it out and cut into circles.  See my fancy cutter!  This was enough dough for 12 pies.  Take a spoonful of the strawberry preserves and place on one side of the dough then on top of that add the Simply Sesame (*note: Simply Sesame needs to be well stirred to make sure it’s not too runny).

Strawberry & Sesame Hand Pies | Bottom Left of the Mitten

Preheat the over to 375 degrees then line a pan with parchment paper.  Fold the top of the dough over then crimp the edges with a fork.  Some filling may eek out when baking that is why it’s crucial to use the parchment so you can have easy clean up.

Strawberry & Sesame Hand Pies | Bottom Left of the Mitten

Bake for 20 minutes.  Before the last 10 minutes is up melt a tablespoon of butter, take the pies out then brush the tops.  Put back into the over to finish.  When done please be aware not to take a giant bite right away since the filling can be H-O-T!  And here you are….

Strawberry & Sesame Hand Pies | Bottom Left of the Mitten

From our home in the Bottom Left of the Mitten to yours ~ Enjoy!

Strawberry & Sesame Hand Pies | Bottom Left of the Mitten #handpies #breakfast #snack
Print Recipe
Strawberry & Sesame Hand Pies
Flaky crust packed with sweet strawberry preserves and Simply Sesame. A portable meal that is a hit with the kids.
Strawberry & Sesame Hand Pies | Bottom Left of the Mitten
Course Breakfast
Cuisine Breakfast
Servings
pies
Ingredients
Pie Dough
Filling
Course Breakfast
Cuisine Breakfast
Servings
pies
Ingredients
Pie Dough
Filling
Strawberry & Sesame Hand Pies | Bottom Left of the Mitten
Instructions
Pie Dough
  1. Add all the dough ingredients to a mixer. Once the dough has been mixed roll into a ball then onto some plastic wrap that has been lightly floured. Put the dough into the refrigerate for 1 hour.
Filling
  1. Once chilled it's time to roll it out and cut into circles.
  2. Take a spoonful of the strawberry preserves and place on one side of the dough. On top of that add the Simply Sesame (*note: Simply Sesame needs to be well stirred to make sure it's not too runny) .
  3. Preheat the over to 375 degrees then line a pan with parchment paper.
  4. Fold the top of the dough over then crimp the edges with a fork.
  5. Bake for 20 minutes.
  6. Before the last 10 minutes is up melt a tablespoon of butter, take the pies out then brush the tops. Put back into the over to finish.
  7. Let them cool slightly. Enjoy!
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St. Louis Ravioli #SundaySupper

Party season is in full swing! That means you might be looking for a quick and easy holiday appetizers so you can spend more time mingling than in the kitchen.  These toasted St. Louis Ravioli are the perfect holiday appetizer.  Cheese ravioli is dipped in egg, covered in a flour mixture then fried until golden brown.  One creamy and crunchy bite will have guests asking for seconds.

St. Louis Ravioli | Bottom Left of the Mitten

I have been making this ravioli for years.  When we have a party at our house I always make this because it’s easy and simple.  While it’s made to be hot it really tastes just as good when it’s cold.  On the rare occasion that we do have leftovers I have found myself in front of the fridge late night snacking on the cold crunchy goodness dipping it into the equally cold spaghetti sauce.  Come on….if your thinking I’m weird I know that you can think of people (or even yourself) that love cold pizza. Same difference?!?! Ok maybe not but either way it’s great for a crowd or late night binge snacking while watching 30 Rock after your guests leave.

If your looking for a fun theme for your soiree check out how my guide
to throwing the Perfect Craft Beer Holiday Party!

St. Louis Ravioli | Bottom Left of the Mitten
It’s as simple as just a few easy steps as you can see above. First take the bag of ravioli and cook it according to package directions. Drain and that is done.  Mix together the flour, Parmesan cheese and garlic powder on a plate or in a shallow pan.  Beat 2 eggs.  Add to a frying pan enough oil to cover the bottom generously-I used about 1/4 cups.  Heat the oil over medium/high heat for 1-2 minutes.  The oil can be checked if it’s ready for frying by lightly flicking a dash of flour into the pan-if it sizzles it’s ready.  Dip ravioli into the eggs then the flour then add to the oil.  Toast 2 minutes each side until it’s golden brown then remove and place onto a towel with a paper towel to drain.

These raviolis will be worked in batches.  When about half of them are cooked the pan may need to be turned off and the oil discarded (please use caution and empty oil into a proper container) then add new oil since burnt flour bits get into the bottom of the pan during the frying process.  After all the raviolis are cooked heat up a jar of spaghetti sauce for dipping.  And here you are…..

St. Louis Ravioli | Bottom Left of the Mitten

From our home in the Bottom Left of the Mitten to yours ~ Happy Holidays!

Thank you Caroline from Caroline’s Cooking for hosting this week!  If your hosting this year make sure to check out all these Holiday Party Recipes below:

Appetizers

Beverages

Desserts

Finger Foods

Mains

Sunday Supper MovementJoin the #SundaySupper conversation on twitter on Sunday! We tweet throughout the day and share recipes from all over the world. Our weekly chat starts at 7:00 pm ET. Follow the #SundaySupper hashtag and remember to include it in your tweets to join in the chat. To get more great Sunday Supper Recipes, visit our website or check out our Pinterest board. Would you like to join the Sunday Supper Movement? It’s easy. You can sign up by clicking here: Sunday Supper Movement.

St. Louis Ravioli | Bottom Left of the Mitten #appetizer #ravioli #easyrecipe
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St. Louis Ravioli
Cheese ravioli is dipped in egg, covered in a flour mixture then fried until golden brown. One creamy and crunchy bite will have guests asking for seconds.
St. Louis Ravioli | Bottom Left of the Mitten
Course Appetizer
Cuisine Appetizer
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Course Appetizer
Cuisine Appetizer
Servings
servings
Ingredients
St. Louis Ravioli | Bottom Left of the Mitten
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Loaded Cheese Fries

It has been a long week for a Michigander!  We’ve had 3, yes I said 3, snow days this week.   So to reminisce on the days of Summer for this Mitten Movie Night we fired up the smoker, a thing we do often when it’s warmer, to slow cook a bottom round roast.  It was the perfect addition to put on top of some Loaded Cheese Fries!

Loaded Cheese Fries with Smoked Bottom Round Roast | Bottom Left of the Mitten
For the beer we’re enjoying some Devil Dancer from Founders.  The movie, Lights Out.  I had wanted to see this in the theaters so bad because I LOVE scary movies but alas we just didn’t have time to go.  This is precisely why I love Mitten Movie Night because it gives me a chance to make great meals like a Pepper Steak Pizza or even special treats for the kids like these Peanut Butter Candy Bar Blossoms and catch up on a movie we’ve been waiting to see. Thank you Netflix! So now on to the recipe.

A key that I’ve found to smoking meat is ‘prior preparation’.  The night before take the meat and put it into a great brine and make sure to give it at least 8 hours in the refrigerator.  We use a brine of Coca-Cola, garlic & onion powders, kosher salt, molasses and apple cider vinegar.  Before putting the meat into the smoker pat it dry then generously cover with a dry rub like this Bayou Black from Legion of Spice.  I also used their Jerk seasoning to make these amazing Jerk Chicken Sandwiches which has been my most popular recipe on the blog to date.  Follow your smokers user directions for cooking time but it generally is 1 Hour per 1 Pound of meat.  This roast took an 2-1/2 hours.  Turn off heat.  Take out the roast and cover with tinfoil and return to smoker to rest for 20 minutes.

Loaded Cheese Fries with Smoked Bottom Round Roast | Bottom Left of the Mitten

About a half hour before the meat is done prepare the bagged fries according to package directions.  I grabbed a bag of Alexia Organics Fries from the grocery store.  Now let me tell you-I’ve used other types of frozen fries before and never liked the way they came out.  Usually soggy and never crispy.  These however were phenomenal and not to mention easier than making my own.  For the toppings chop up some tomatoes and jalapenos. Sautee an onion in some butter.  Get some parsley for added flair.  Whip up a quick cheese sauce by creating a roux with butter and milk then add cheese.

Loaded Cheese Fries with Smoked Bottom Round Roast | Bottom Left of the Mitten

The smoked roast came out perfect.  Juicy and moist with a slight crust on it from the rub.  It came out medium/rare with the cooking method I mentioned above but as always with meat cook to your preference and follow food safety guidelines.  Now time to assemble!

Loaded Cheese Fries with Smoked Bottom Round Roast | Bottom Left of the Mitten

Start with a french fry base, add sweet onions, tomatoes and jalapenos, the meat that has been cut into strips then finally smother in cheese sauce.  Garnish with parsley and here you are…..

Loaded Cheese Fries with Smoked Bottom Round Roast | Bottom Left of the Mitten

From our home in the Bottom Left of the Mitten to yours ~ Enjoy!

*Affiliate links are included in this post. Please read my Discloser Policy.

Loaded Cheese Fries with Smoked Bottom Round Roast | Bottom Left of the Mitten #loadedfries #smokedmeat

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Loaded Cheese Fries
Crisp french fries loaded with all the goodies like tomatoes, jalapenos, smoked beef and a smooth and creamy cheese sauce. Perfect for sharing...if you want!
Loaded Cheese Fries| Bottom Left of the Mitten
Course Main Dish
Cuisine Beef
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Brine/Rub
Cheese Sauce
French Fries & Topping
Course Main Dish
Cuisine Beef
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Brine/Rub
Cheese Sauce
French Fries & Topping
Loaded Cheese Fries| Bottom Left of the Mitten
Instructions
Brine/Rub
  1. On the stove top heat up all the ingredients in a small pan. Let come to a boil then remove from heat and allow to cool.
  2. Once cooled put in a baking dish with the meat. Cover and refrigerate for at least 8 hours.
  3. Before putting the meat into the smoker pat it dry then generously cover with a dry rub. Follow your smokers user directions for cooking time but it generally is 1 Hour per 1 Pound of meat. This roast took an 2-1/2 hours. Turn off the smoker. Take out and cover with tinfoil and return to smoker to rest another 20 minutes.
Cheese Sauce
  1. Melt butter in a small pan. Gradually add flour. Then gradually add milk. Once it's all combined add cheese to mixture. Stir until melted. Use to top the french fries.
French Fries & Topping
  1. Prepare bagged fries to package directions.
  2. For the toppings chop up some tomatoes and jalapenos. Sautee an onion in some butter.
  3. Assemble by starting with a french fry base, add sweet onions, tomatoes and jalapenos, the meat that has been cut into strips then finally smother in cheese sauce. Garnish with parsley. Enjoy!
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Peppermint Mocha Poke Cake

The holidays are so much fun around here.  Not only do we have Christmas coming but it’s also a time for several birthdays in our family.  Just a few days before Christmas we celebrate my Mother -In-Law’s.  After spending the week with her recently I found out she has a peppermint mocha obsession so I decided to bake her something I know she will love, Peppermint Mocha Poke Cake.

Peppermint Mocha Poke Cake | Bottom Left of the Mitten

While we were in Disney World during the week of Thanksgiving I found out that my MIL has a ‘Starbucks’ Sixth Sense.  It was like she could sniff one out from 300 feet away.  She would say “I’ll be right back!” then return with a steaming cup of Starbucks Peppermint Mocha with delight in her eyes.  I think it was her favorite thing to do next to eating at Be Our Guest.  I hope she enjoys this cake as much as she enjoyed that Starbucks!

Feel free to cook the white cake mix per package directions.  For me, that is usually just a ‘guide’.  Most boxed cake mixes call for water which I will substitute with milk.  Or for my Piña Colada Upside Down Cake I added pineapple juice.  Mix it up! And this trick works for most baked goods.  Take my Chocolate Cherry Cafe Brownies for example, I used coffee instead of milk or water.  Turned out great!

For this particular recipe I used 1/2 cup oil, 1 cup milk and 3 eggs.  Mix then add the batter to a 13″ x 9″ greased pan then put into a preheated 350 degree oven.  Bake for 34-38 minutes.  Take out to cool for 10-15 minutes.  Once the cake has cooled down a bit now it’s time to ‘poke’ it.  Take a straw and insert to make holes all over the cake.  Once it’s been sufficiently poked now it’s time to prepare the pudding.

Peppermint Mocha Poke Cake | Bottom Left of the Mitten

With an electric mixer blend together the milk, peppermint mocha creamer and chocolate pudding mix until completely blended, around 3 minutes.   Pour the pudding over top of cake then use a spatula to spread evenly while pushing the pudding into the poke marks.  Now lick the bowl, you know you want to!  Refrigerator to let the pudding set for around 2-3 hours.

Just before serving frost with the whipped cream.  Chop up the peppermint bark and sprinkle over the top.  So festive!  And here you are….

Peppermint Mocha Poke Cake | Bottom Left of the Mitten

From our home in the Bottom Left of the Mitten to yours ~ Happy Holidays!

*Affiliate links are included in this post. Please read my Discloser Policy.

Gymboree Sale On Now!

Peppermint Mocha Poke Cake | Bottom Left of the Mitten #christmas #peppermintmocha
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Peppermint Mocha Poke Cake
Fluffy white cake 'poked' so Peppermint Mocha pudding fill every part. Top with whipped cream and chopped peppermint bark. A simple cake for the holiday!
Peppermint Mocha Poke Cake | Bottom Left of the Mitten
Course Dessert
Cuisine Dessert
Servings
pieces
Ingredients
White Cake
Peppermint Mocha Pudding
Topping
Course Dessert
Cuisine Dessert
Servings
pieces
Ingredients
White Cake
Peppermint Mocha Pudding
Topping
Peppermint Mocha Poke Cake | Bottom Left of the Mitten
Instructions
White Cake
  1. For this particular recipe I used 1/2 cup oil, 1 cup milk and 3 eggs. Mix then add the batter to a 13" x 9" greased pan then put into a preheated 350 degree oven. Bake for 34-38 minutes. Take out to cool for 10-15 minutes.
  2. Once the cake has cooled down a bit now it's time to 'poke' it. Take a straw and insert to make holes all over the cake.
Peppermint Mocha Pudding
  1. With an electric mixer blend together the milk, peppermint mocha creamer and chocolate pudding mix until completely blended, around 3 minutes. Pour the pudding over top of cake then use a spatula to spread evenly while pushing the pudding into the poke marks.
  2. Refrigerator to let the pudding set for around 2-3 hours.
Topping
  1. Just before serving frost with the whipped cream. Chop up the peppermint bark and sprinkle over the top.
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Caramel Bottom Eggnog Cheesecake #SundaySupper

We are expecting our first substantial snow fall here today in Southwestern Michigan.  How exciting!  I feel like the holiday can finally get under way.  I’ve strung the lights up outside, put up the tree, hit the Amazon Cyber Monday deals.  We are way ahead of schedule this year and only have a few presents left to get so that means in not too long I have to do one task that I don’t particular like about Christmas-wrapping presents.  I’ll be honest, I suck at it! However one tradition that I have kind of makes it easy to get through, I enjoy a big glass of eggnog while doing it.  That creamy concoction mixed with a little spiced rum….yummy!  Makes the fact that I cannot make even a shirt box look presentable a little less stinging. But I’ve never had ‘nog any other way….so I decided to try something different.

Caramel Bottom Eggnog Cheesecake from Bottom Left of the Mitten

In order to let everyone this holiday season enjoy eggnog I decided to use it in a method that is quickly becoming one of my favorite ways to cook ~ no bake cheesecake.  A no bake cheesecake can be changed up to suite the needs of any occasion.  Have a picnic? Make my Chocolate Bottom Strawberry Cheesecake.  Need a quick dessert for a football cookout?  Whip up a Butterscotch Bottom Pumpkin Spice Cheesecake.  Easy, fast, versatile and more importantly~delicious!  This Caramel Bottom Eggnog Cheesecake with Ginger Snap Crust is a winner for the holidays.  And did you see that I said ‘easy’?  Check out the video showing how quickly it comes together.

Dessert is made.  So now you can get back to wrapping all those presents.  I hope you are better at it than I am! And here you are……Caramel Bottom Eggnog Cheesecake from Bottom Left of the Mitten

From our home in the Bottom Left of the Mitten to yours ~ Happy Holidays!

Thank you Christie from A Kitchen Hoor’s Adventure for hosting this holiday recipe roundup for everyone who loves eggnog!  Get 20+ more recipes here…..

Baked Goods

Beverages

Breakfast and Breakfast Pastries

Desserts

Sunday Supper MovementJoin the #SundaySupper conversation on twitter on Sunday! We tweet throughout the day and share recipes from all over the world. Our weekly chat starts at 7:00 pm ET. Follow the #SundaySupper hashtag and remember to include it in your tweets to join in the chat. To get more great Sunday Supper Recipes, visit our website or check out our Pinterest board. Would you like to join the Sunday Supper Movement? It’s easy. You can sign up by clicking here: Sunday Supper Movement.

*Music ‘A Hoot’ by Partners in Rhyme

Caramel Bottom Eggnog Cheesecake from Bottom Left of the Mitten #christmas #eggnog

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Caramel Bottom Eggnog Cheesecake
Creamy caramel and eggnog cheesecake filling covers a crunchy ginger snap cookie crust. Drizzle with more caramel and top with candied walnuts for a perfect no bake holiday treat.
Caramel Bottom Eggnog Cheesecake from Bottom Left of the Mitten
Course Dessert
Cuisine Dessert
Servings
pieces
Ingredients
Candied Walnuts
Eggnog Filling
Ginger Snap crust
Carmel Bottom & Drizzle
  • 11 ounces caramels reserve 10 in seperate dish for dirzzle
  • 3 Tbs milk 2 for caramel bottom then 1 for drizzle
Course Dessert
Cuisine Dessert
Servings
pieces
Ingredients
Candied Walnuts
Eggnog Filling
Ginger Snap crust
Carmel Bottom & Drizzle
  • 11 ounces caramels reserve 10 in seperate dish for dirzzle
  • 3 Tbs milk 2 for caramel bottom then 1 for drizzle
Caramel Bottom Eggnog Cheesecake from Bottom Left of the Mitten
Instructions
  1. For the candied walnuts cook butter, brown sugar and walnuts for 1-2 minutes on stove top medium/high heat. Set to the side to cool.
  2. Crush cookies then add to a greased pie pan. Mix with sugar and butter. Press down to form to pan.
  3. Melt larger bowl of caramels with 2 Tbs milk for around 35-45 seconds. Pour into crust.
  4. Mix Jell-o, eggnog, vanilla, cinnamon and nutmeg together with electric mixer until combined. Pour over caramel and ginger snap crust.
  5. Melt the reserved caramels and milk for 25-35 seconds in microwave. Drizzle over the top of the pie. Add candied walnuts.
  6. Refrigerate for 4-6 hours. Cut into 8 pieces. Enjoy!
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Thirteen Bean & Bacon Soup

Well, we missed the snow!  Last Saturday we hightailed it out of here when it just started sleeting and missed the light dusting that came soon after.  Where did we head to you might ask?  Oh, a little place called ‘Disney’!  While Michigan had it’s first cold spell we were basking in the sun, swimming & riding roller coasters. It was a great trip but now it’s time to settle into the reality that Winter is coming.  I’m okay with that–because I get to celebrate Mitten Movie Night snuggled up while the wind howls drinking some craft beer and enjoying a warm bowl of soup.  My Thirteen Bean & Bacon Soup to be exact.

Thirteen Bean & Bacon Soup from Bottom Left of the Mitten

With this soup recipe we’re having Accumulation from New Belgium.  New Belgium has some of the best seasonal beers and this is one of my favorites.  A White IPA perfectly pairs with the beefy bacon and tang of the tomato base in this bean and bacon soup.  The tomato comes from a favorite of mine, condensed soup.  This time of year I can get such a great deal on them so I stock up.  Adding it to recipes like my Cream of Chicken Bake or just for heating up to dip grilled cheese in.

For the movie we’re watching Elf.  Will Ferrell is my favorite actor.  As I mentioned before I really think he’s one of Hollywood’s hottest.  I also need to watch a holiday movie because after spending Thanksgiving week in Florida I’ll be honest, I kind of forgot that it even IS the holidays.  When we got to the hotel in Disney they were playing Christmas songs and it was decorated but something just felt ‘off’ about it.

Don’t get me wrong, Disney World does a fantastic job, but they do not have the two things that make the season for a Michigander and that’s bone chilling cold and the possibility of a White Christmas.  It may seem like I’m a State snob but I’m not Michigan has ‘Winter Wonderland’ in spades and we do it better than most.  Time to reset my mind now that we’re home.  So enough about that…let’s get back to the food!

This Thirteen Bean mix came from Fresh Thyme Market in Mishawaka, IN.  We’ve been to this store a few times but just decided to peruse the loose bins section.  The convenience of filling the bags with just the amount I needed of couscous, beans, lentils, almonds and the ‘required’ gummy worms that Little A was unable to leave the store without was great.  If you can’t find a bean combination I’m sure a great northern bean would work as well.

Starting off soak your beans for 6-8 hours in cold water.  Drain the water and rinse them when it’s time to cook the soup.  Add 5 cups of chicken stock to a large stock pot with the beans then set to medium heat.  Now dice the bacon and cook to the preferred doneness.

Thirteen Bean & Bacon Soup from Bottom Left of the Mitten

While the bacon is cooking chop the onions, garlic and carrots.  When bacon has cooked remove and put on a plate with a paper towel reserving 1 Tbs of the bacon grease.  Add onions, garlic and carrots to the pan with the bacon grease and sautee for 5 minutes until the veggies have slightly softened.  To the vegetables stir in 1 Tbs flour which will eventually add a little thickness to the soup.

Into the pot of beans and chicken stock add the cooked bacon, all the vegetables then finally the can of condensed tomato soup.  Set to low/medium heat then cover and let it do it’s thing for around 1-1/2 hours.  Chop up some green onion for the top and here you are….

Thirteen Bean & Bacon Soup from Bottom Left of the Mitten

From our home in the Bottom Left of the Mitten to yours ~ Enjoy!

*Affiliate links are included in this post. Please read my Discloser Policy.

Get double the sweets in your first Treatsie box!

 

Thirteen Bean & Bacon Soup from Bottom Left of the Mitten
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Thirteen Bean & Bacon Soup
Who knew that making a delicious soup could be so simple and taste as good as the canned original? Hearty beans and smoky bacon make for a cozy winter meal.
Thirteen Bean & Bacon Soup from Bottom Left of the Mitten
Course Main Dish
Cuisine Soup
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Course Main Dish
Cuisine Soup
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Thirteen Bean & Bacon Soup from Bottom Left of the Mitten
Instructions
  1. Soak beans for 6-8 hours in cold water. Drain the water and rinse them.
  2. Add 5 cups of chicken stock to a covered pot with the beans then set to medium heat.
  3. Dice and cook bacon to desired doneness.
  4. Chop the onions, garlic and carrots. When bacon has cooked remove the bacon and put on a plate with a paper towel reserving 1 Tbs of the bacon grease. Add onions, garlic and carrots to the pan with the bacon grease and sautee for 5 minutes until the veggies have slightly softened. To the vegetables stir in 1 Tbs flour which will eventually add a little thickness to the soup.
  5. To the pot of beans and chicken stock add the cooked bacon, all the vegetables then finally the can of condensed tomato soup.
  6. Set to low/medium heat and let it do it's thing for around 1-1/2 hours.
  7. Place in a serving bowl and add chopped green onions if desired. Enjoy!
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Party Perfect Spinach & Artichoke Dip

Well, the Holiday Season is upon us.  Whether I have to drag you kicking and screaming and inject you with season cheer.  Or if you’ve had your finger on the Christmas tree lights while wearing your reindeer antlers. It’s here.  Alas!  Now me, I’m a holiday person.  Pumpkin pie, dress the turkey, trim the tree, hang the stockings. Yes to all of it! But once the holiday is over-I’m over it.  The next day: Tree-gone! Lights on the house-gone! Let’s not dwell and start thinking about the new year.  But while it is here, I really do enjoy every moment of it.  So this year one of the ways we’re going to enjoy it is by having some friends over for a Craft Beer Tasting Party!

Party Perfect Spinach & Artichoke Dip from Bottom Left of the Mitten

Santa likes craft beer as much as I do! Or I inadvertently placed that there.

Usually when we have a party it’s BYOB and a dish to pass.  Which is great as the host I only have to come up with one dish and also get to try all the great food that our friends make.  This year I’m making Party Perfect Spinach & Artichoke Dip.  It’s a dish that I see on almost every brew pub menu so it’s a great appetizer for this party.  Let’s get cooking. Or stirring, because it’s that simple. Cook the spinach to package directions and make sure it’s strained.  Mix all other ingredients together up until the shredded cheese.  Split half into the mixture.  Put dip into an oven proof dish. Top with remaining cheese.  Bake at 375 degrees for 15-18 minutes or until cheese is melted. Like I said, party perfect!

Party Perfect Spinach & Artichoke DipFor the ultimate craft beer party a tasting set is key.  It gives guests a unique way to experience craft beer.  Each glass contains a tasting marker for what beer goes best with what glass.  These also make spectacular Christmas gifts for the Craft Beer Lover in your life.

Since we are having a craft beer party I thought I would throw out the usual BYOB for this party and call it the ‘Sixer Mixer’. Bring a six pack of beer for all to share.  Some like IPA’s, some like Hefeweizen.  Some like Pilsners, some like Stouts.  Beer has a unique talent of finding just the right one for you.  Plus this beer sharing goes perfectly with the fun game that we’re playing, Brew Haha!  Can you get creative enough to beat your friends?

Party Perfect Spinach & Artichoke Dip from Bottom Left of the Mitten

And finally what is a party without music?  Hook up the Friday Afternoon Speaker and crank up the jams.  Crack your beer open, tip it over then put the phone in the now available ‘holder’.  I highly suggest queuing up some Yelawolf.  He is backed up by a Michigan native, maybe you’ve heard of him, Eminem!  If you have someone on your gift list that loves music and beer, this would make a great gift.

Party Perfect Spinach & Artichoke Dip from Bottom Left of the Mitten

Love what I showed you here for the party?  Visit Uncommon Goods for more gift ideas!

From our home in the Bottom Left of the Mitten to yours ~ Party On & Happy Holidays!

I received items in this post complimentary from Uncommon Goods.  All opinions stated in this post are my own. Please read my Discloser Policy for further information.

 

Party Perfect Spinach & Artichoke Dip from Bottom Left of the Mitten

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Party Perfect Spinach & Artichoke Dip
Creamy party dip loaded with spinach, zesty artichoke hearts and crunchy water chestnuts. Baked to bubbly perfection. Serve at your next party!
Course Appetizer
Cuisine Appetizer
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Course Appetizer
Cuisine Appetizer
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Combine all ingredients through the shredded Italian cheese. Please 1/2 into the dip.
  2. Place dip into an oven proof dish. Top with remaining cheese.
  3. Bake at 375 degrees for 15-18 minutes or until cheese is melted.
  4. Serve with crackers, bread, or pita crisps. Just don't double dip! Enjoy.
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Pepper Steak Pizza

Who’s ready for Mitten Movie Night?  I know I am, it’s been a long week.  So let’s kick it off on a positive note and I’ll say a 4 letter word that makes probably 95% of people just feel better: P-I-Z-Z-A.  Pepper Steak Pizza to be exact. Tonight we’re watching Mike & Dave Need Wedding Dates.  I love Adam Devine. Then enjoying some Stone Brewing Ruination Double IPA 2.0.  Lots of hoppy goodness!

Pepper Steak Pizza | Bottom Left of the Mitten

Whenever I think of pizza I think of the movie Can’t Buy Me Love.  Patrick Dempsey on the first day as the ‘popular kid’ spent the day probably not as he had imagined. When he finally gets out of school he and the girl of his dreams go to a pizza joint.  Pizza arrives and he picks it up, looks at it and exclaims that it’s hot but it looks good and he is so hungry.  About to take that first bite someone comes from behind and takes his piece and then the whole pan.  I guess the point of this is this poor guy had a terrible day and all he wanted was to take some comfort in a piece of pizza.  My thoughts are that pizza is ‘comforting’ food rather than ‘comfort’ food.  Had a long hard week?  Order a pizza and watch a movie~relax.  Have a great day with big accomplishments?  Stay home and make a pizza together and celebrate.  Haven’t seen your friends in awhile?  Meet at a great pizza place (I highly recommend Silver Beach Pizza in Saint Joseph, MI) and catch up.  Ok, enough already with the pizza nostalgia!  Let’s actually make it!

The crust for this is so easy and you do not need to let it rise.  Add water, yeast and honey to a bowl.  Set aside and let bubbles form on the top-usually takes around 10 minutes. This means the yeast is working. Stir in four and salt to combine into a ball.  Place ball on a well floured surface then roll with rolling pin to desired size.  I did not let this rise since I wanted a thinner style crust.  Place on pizza pan.

On the steak I used a trick that my brother taught me.  Take about 2 Tbs of softened butter and 2-3 cloves of minced garlic and smash it together.  Slather over both sides of the steak then let it sit for about 20 minutes.  While it’s sitting heat an oven proof pan in the oven at 400 degrees.  Cut the steak into strips then remove the pan from the oven.  The pan will be so hot that it will start browning the steak even though the stove top heat is not on.  Brown on all sides then put back into over for about 5 minutes to get done cooking.  So good! One of the best cooking tips I’ve ever gotten.

peppersteakpizza_4f

Now all that needs to be done is put all the sauce ingredients into a sauce pan and bring to a boil and let thicken.  Usually within 3-5 minutes it will be ready.  Sautee peppers and onion in 1/2 tsp butter.  Assemble pizza: Sauce, steak (make sure the liquid has been drained if there is any to avoid soggy crust), peppers & onions, cheese and chopped tomatoes.

Pepper Steak Pizza from Bottom Left of the Mitten

Place in a preheated 375 degree oven for 20-22 minutes.  Cut it up into 8 pieces.  Like my Pizza Cutter?  I was honored when Checkered Chef asked if I would give this and their Pizza Peel a test drive.  I loved them!  Check them out at CheckeredChef.com to get your own.  And here you are…..

Pepper Steak Pizza from Bottom Left of the Mitten

From our home in the Bottom Left of the Mitten to yours ~ Enjoy!

Thin Crust adapted from How Sweet It Is

*Affiliate links are included in this post. Please read my Discloser Policy.

Pepper Steak Pizza from Bottom Left of the Mitten

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Pepper Steak Pizza
Tender steak and sauteed peppers & onions on top of a thin crust. Perfectly paired with a soy based sauce and melted cheese. A unique way to enjoy a takeout favorite.
Pepper Steak Pizza | Bottom Left of the Mitten
Course Main Dish
Cuisine Pizza
Servings
pieces
Ingredients
Thin Crust
Peppers & Steak
Pepper Steak Sauce
Course Main Dish
Cuisine Pizza
Servings
pieces
Ingredients
Thin Crust
Peppers & Steak
Pepper Steak Sauce
Pepper Steak Pizza | Bottom Left of the Mitten
Instructions
Thin Crust
  1. Add water, yeast and honey to a bowl. Set aside and let bubbles form on the top-usually takes around 10 minutes. This means the yeast is working.
  2. Stir in four and salt to combine into a ball. Please ball on a well floured surface then roll with rolling pin to desired size and place on pizza pan. Do not allow to rise.
Pepper Steak
  1. Take about 2 Tbs of softened butter and 2-3 cloves of minced garlic and smash it together. Slather over both sides of the steak then let it sit for about 20 minutes.
  2. While it's sitting heat an oven proof pan in the over at 400 degrees. Cut the steak into strips then remove the pan from the oven. The pan will be so hot that it will start browning the steak even though the stove top heat is not on. Brown on all sides then put back into oven for about 5 minutes to complete cooking.
Pepper Steak Sauce
  1. Combine all sauce ingredients into a small pot. Cook on medium heat until thickened completely.
  2. Assemble pizza: Sauce, steak (make sure the liquid has been drained if there is any to avoid soggy crust), peppers & onions, cheese and chopped tomatoes.
  3. Place in a preheated 375 degree oven for 20-22 minutes. Cut it up into 8 pieces. Enjoy!
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Double Batch Smashed Beans

I call this ‘Double Batch’ for two reasons.  The first, I’m taking two beans made in two separate ways and smashing them together.  The second, I like quirky names.  So therefore Double Batch Smashed Beans it is!  A delicious side dish for your burrito and taco nights.

Doubel Batch Smashed Beans from Bottom Left of the Mitten

The steps for this are ridiculously easy.  So instead of just opening a plain old can of refried beans and stopping there why not just go a few steps further?  Might as well, right?  Melt 1 Tbs butter.  Sautee 1/2 the onions, 1/2 the tomatoes and the garlic.  Add both cans of beans to the pan.   Smash with a potato smasher to combine.  Bonus if you have any angst on the day these are prepared you can take it out on the beans.  Smash it, smash it good!

Double Batch Smashed Beans from Bottom Left of the Mitten

Cook for around 10 minutes stirring every few minutes until completely heated through. Place in an oven proof dish.  Sprinkle with cheese then place in 375 degree oven for 8-10 minutes until cheese is melted.

Sprinkle the top to with tomatoes and green onions.  Now you have a lovely side dish that was so easy to make.  Maybe pair it with my Blackened Chicken Green Chili Enchiladas or Stuffed Hatch Green Chiles.  And here you are….

Doubel Batch Smashed Beans from Bottom Left of the MItten

From our home in the Bottom Left of the Mitten to yours ~ Enjoy!

*Affiliate links are included in this post. Please read my Discloser Policy.

Crazy 8 Sale On Now!

 

Double Batch Smashed Beans from Bottom Left of the Mitten

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Double Batch Smashed Beans
Two types of beans, chili & refried, are smashed together then topped with melted cheese. A new type of side dish for your burrito and taco nights.
Double Batch Bean Smash | Bottom Left of the Mitten
Course Side Dish
Cuisine Mexican
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Course Side Dish
Cuisine Mexican
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Double Batch Bean Smash | Bottom Left of the Mitten
Instructions
  1. Melt 1 Tbs butter. Sautee 1/2 the onions, 1/2 the tomatoes and the garlic.
  2. Add both cans of beans to the pan.
  3. Smash with a potato smasher to combine.
  4. Cook for around 10 minutes stirring every few minutes until completely heated through.
  5. Place in an oven proof dish. Sprinkle with cheese then place in 375 degree oven for 8-10 minutes until cheese is melted.
  6. Top with reserved onions and tomatoes. Enjoy!
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Jerk Chicken Sandwiches

I’ve tried a meal with jerk seasoning precisely once.  Like 16 years ago.  Not a fan.  I decided to get wild at a chain restaurant and veer away from my normal order.  Big mistake.  Not being able to get through even half the sandwich because my mouth was in flames is not my idea of a good dining experience.  So when I saw that Legion of Spice would send 2 free samples I figured I didn’t have much to loose.  I’m so glad that I expanded my seasonal horizons because these Jerk Chicken Sandwiches are just what I need on this Mitten Movie Night.

Jerk Chicken Sandwiches from Bottom Left of the Mitten

Tonight we’re drinking Bellaire Brown from Short’s Brewing.  A perfect beer paired with the smokey, sweet spices of the jerk seasoning.  Keeping with the Halloween theme (I know it’s passed alright!) we are re-watching The Babadook.  This is on Netflix instant–if you want to freak the freak out watch it now.

For the chicken, I just added it to my crock pot with 1 cup of water and 2 Tbs of the ‘I’m A Jerk’ Seasoning.  After it started cooking for an hour or so the house smelled amazing.  Coriander, cinnamon, nutmeg. I  wanted to jump on the computer and start researching tropical locals for a mid-winter break.  Or I can save a few thousand dollars and have this meal when I’m feeling the long Michigan winter blues.

Once the chicken has cooked for 6-8 hours take it out and shred it then put it back into the pot to soak up more flavor while the sauce gets made.

Jerk Chicken Sandwiches from Bottom Left of the Mitten

I really love giving my recipes quirky names (ie. Turkey & Bacon Sliders with ‘Isn’t That Special’ Sauce).  Therefore I decided to call this ‘Jerk’ Sauce.  **Take a few minutes to think of 10 separate instances where you could have used this in a conversation…..** and we’re back!  Put all the sauce ingredients in a pot and set it to simmer over a low/medium heat for 10-15 minutes to thicken it up.

Jerk Chicken Sandwiches from Bottom Left of the Mitten

Prepare the buns. I prefer mine toasted so at this time I would butter them and place in the oven for 8-10 minutes on a baking sheet.  When done remove the heels from the pan and flip the lids over.  Sprinkle shredded cheese ( I use shredded cheese over anything) and put them into the oven to melt for another 2-4 minutes.

To assemble remove the meat from the crock pot and place on top of the bun.  Drizzle some ‘Jerk’ Sauce on top.  It’s meant to be more of a condiment than mixed with the meat like my Asian BBQ Sauce.  Dress up with some pickled red onions and jalapenos.  And here you are…..

Jerk Chicken Sandwiches from Bottom Left of the Mitten

From our home in the Bottom Left of the Mitten to yours ~ Enjoy!

*Affiliate links are included in this post. Please read my Discloser Policy.

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Jerk Chicken Sandwiches from Bottom Left of the Mitten

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Jerk Chicken Sandwiches
A vacation from the normal sandwich. Jerk seasoning slow cooks with chicken. Top it on a toasted bun. Drizzle with spicy sauce then pickled red onion and jalapenos.
Jerk Chicken Sandwiches | Bottom Left of the Mitten
Course Main Dish
Cuisine Sandwich
Servings
sandwiches
Ingredients
Jerk Chicken
'Jerk' Seasoning
Course Main Dish
Cuisine Sandwich
Servings
sandwiches
Ingredients
Jerk Chicken
'Jerk' Seasoning
Jerk Chicken Sandwiches | Bottom Left of the Mitten
Instructions
Jerk Chicken
  1. For the chicken, I just added it to my crock pot with 1 cup of water and 2 Tbs of the 'I'm A Jerk' Seasoning.
  2. Cook for 6-8 hours take it out and shred it. Put it back into the pot to soak up more flavor while the sauce gets made.
'Jerk' Sauce
  1. Put all the sauce ingredients in a pot and set it to simmer over a low/medium heat for 10-15 minutes to thicken it up.
  2. Toast the buns. Butter them and put them in the oven for 8-10 minutes on a baking sheet. Taking them out remove the heels from the pan and flip the lids over. Sprinkle shredded cheese and put them into the oven to melt for another 2-4 minutes.
  3. To assemble remove the meat from the crock pot and place on top of the bun.
  4. Drizzle some 'Jerk' Sauce on top. Add some pickled red onions and jalapenos. Enjoy!
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