Tuesday, December 17, 2013

BBQ Ranch Pepperoni Pasta Bake

I've been following Shea over at Dixie Chik Cooks for awhile...and I recently had the pleasure and opportunity to meet and become friends with her (makes sense...we both live in Birmingham!). Thanks, Plain Chicken!

She created this recipe for a Ronco contest/sweepstakes, and I was so intrigued by the ingredients that I had to try it out for myself. 

I made a few changes, like incorporating the pepperoni into the sauce (instead of placing on top) to ensure every bite had some and reserving some of the cheese to cover the pasta for a nicely browned "crust."

I was so surprised at just how well these flavors worked together! This is decadent...and a neat change to traditional baked pasta. I'm already looking forward to leftovers today for lunch!

Printable recipe

1 12-ounce box rotini pasta, cooked
1-1/2 cups Ranch dressing
1 cup BBQ sauce
1/2 cup milk
2 cups Mozzarella cheese, divided
25 pepperoni slices, cut in half
Italian seasoning

In a large bowl, combine Ranch dressing, BBQ sauce, milk, one cup of cheese, and pepperoni to make "sauce." Add cooked pasta and stir to coat well. Pour into greased baking dish. Top with remaining cheese and some Italian seasoning. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Savory Breakfast Muffins

I saw these on Pinterest last week, courtesy of Shanty 2 Chic, and even though she made them with sausage, I thought it would be a great way to use up leftover Thanksgiving ham.

These are super easy and scrumptious. I made these on Sunday, and they have made for a perfect breakfast-on-the-go this week.

These got a little browner/more done than I wanted, so be sure to keep an eye on them the last few minutes of cooking.

Printable recipe

1 pound cooked sausage or ham
1 cup Bisquick
4 eggs, beaten
1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese

Stir together all ingredients and spoon mixture evenly into greased muffin tin. Bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes.

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Pimiento Cheese Stuffed Pickled Okra

My sister had us all over this past Saturday for the Iron Bowl (WDE!), and I remembered that I had pinned this from Southern Living. I figured nothing said GameDay in the South like pimiento cheese and pickled okra! 

They include a recipe for the pimiento cheese, but if you want to make it easy on yourself (like I did), you can just used prepared (my favorite is Palmetto Cheese, particularly the one with jalapenos).

This is more of a method than a recipe, so I'll just describe. I used one jar of pickled okra, which ultimately yielded 22 pieces (easily doubled for larger crowd). Blot the okra dry, and slice in half lengthwise. Gently scoop out the seeds; I started off using a spoon, but it's much easier to just use your fingers. Scoop pimiento cheese into each half. I sprinkled some ground red pepper over the top for some color and a little heat, but you could use paprika instead, too. 

These were a big hit! Perfect finger food...and the presentation is so pretty! Everyone gobbled them up...I should have made more. This would make a great Christmas Eve appetizer!

Note: I have to give proper photo credit to Mae Shaw, my middle niece, who is nine years old. She asked to borrow my camera, and later, when I was going through the 107 pictures she took, I realized that she actually snapped the best one of this dish. Go figure!