Tag Archives: appetizer

Cold Cajun Crab Dip

One of my husband’s guilty pleasures is the cajun crab dip in the seafood section of our grocery store. While there’s no question it’s delicious, it’s not exactly healthy. I decided to take a stab at recreating it just a bit better for you. I used real lump crab meat because I got a pound of it for only $9, which was a flippin’ STEAL (P.S. if you can score a membership to a Restaurant Depot, do it!). You can always use imitation crab meat or a mixture of real and imitation if that works better for you. The consensus at our family crab feast. . . I need to make this again—it was a hit!

Cold Cajun Crab Dip

1 lb real or imitation crab meat

1/2 cup fat free sour cream

16 oz fat free cream cheese, softened

1 tbsp hot sauce

1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce

1 tbsp Cajun seasoning

1 cup shredded fat free cheddar cheese

1/2 cup diced green onion

2 tsp minced garlic

1 tsp Italian seasoning

1 tsp horseradish

 

Mix together sour cream, cream cheese, hot sauce, Worcestershire, Cajun seasoning, garlic, Italian seasoning, and horseradish. Gently fold in the crab meat, onions, and cheese until it’s fully incorporated. Cover and chill in the refrigerator for a couple of hours before serving with crackers, carrot sticks, celery, and/or baked tortilla chips.

 


Buffalo Chicken “Cupcakes”

Yep, you read that right. And they are seriously delicious! Ok, so they are really more “muffin” than “cupcake,” but if you like buffalo chicken with blue cheese, you won’t be disappointed! I was inspired by the Buffalo Chicken Cupcakes from Cupcake Project. My friend Stacy from work sent around the link and even made the comment that if anyone would try to make something like it, it would be me.

Well, she was right. But I didn’t think it was very practical to put a chicken wing on top of the cupcake because you would clearly have to eat the wing first and would, therefore, not be able to enjoy all of the flavors in one bite. So I decided to put all of the deliciousness right in the batter. Also, I like shortcuts, so I doctored up some Jiffy cornbread mix instead of starting from scratch. The juxtaposition of an appetizer in cupcake packaging may seem strange, but all the more reason your kids (and spouses!) will love them!

Buffalo Chicken “Cupcakes”
Yield: 22 cupcakes

2 boxes Jiffy Corn Muffin Mix

2 eggs

2/3 cup of milk

1 cup cooked and diced chicken

3 tbsp buffalo sauce (I use Frank’s Red Hot)

1/2 cup blue cheese crumbles

 

For the “Frosting”:

6 oz softened cream cheese

5 wedges of The Laughing Cow Light Blue Cheese

4 tsp buffalo sauce

1 celery stalk, diced (for garnish)

 

Preheat your oven to 400°. Grease or line two muffin pans. Prepare the Jiffy mix according to the directions on the box. Stir in chicken, blue cheese crumbles and 3 tbsp buffalo sauce. Fill muffin cups 2/3 of the way full. Bake for 15 minutes and allow to cool completely. Meanwhile, stir together cream cheese, blue cheese wedges, and 4 tsp buffalo sauce until smooth. Top each cupcake with some of the cheese mixture and sprinkle with a few pieces of celery.

 


Crescent Rolls, 8 Ways

Refrigerated crescent rolls are possibilities in a can! There is seriously so much you can do with them, from breakfast to main entree to dessert and more. Here, I have gathered 8 of my favorite recipes that use Pillsbury Crescent Rolls or Pillsbury Crescent Recipe Creations (basically a sheet of crescent rolls without the perforations). They are super quick and easy. . . not to mention delicious!

Photo via Pillsbury.com

Bake a sheet of crescent rolls (the Recipe Creations works best for this one) according to the directions and cool completely. Mix  8 oz of cream cheese, 1/2 cup of sour cream, 1 tbsp fresh chopped dill, 1 tsp minced garlic and 2 tbsp chopped scallions. Spread the mixture on the cooled crescents, top with your favorite raw veggies, and slice into small squares.

Photo via Pillsbury.com

Taco Pie

Brown 1 lb of ground beef and add taco seasoning according to directions on the packet. Press a sheet of crescent rolls into a pie plate (you may need to separate the triangles for it to fit nicely). Alternate layers of the fully cooked ground beef, shredded cheese, corn, and salsa until you have reached the top. Top with more cheese and bake until the crust is brown (about 20 minutes).

Photo via PlainChicken.com

Chicken Roll-Up Casserole

Fill crescent rolls with a heaping spoonful of a mixture of cream cheese, chicken, butter, onion, cheese and garlic. Smother with a cream sauce of milk, cheese and cream of chicken soup, top with more cheddar cheese and bake for 30 minutes. So good!! You can see the full, detailed recipe here.

Photo via PlainChicken.com

Buffalo Chicken Crescents

Place a slice of provolone cheese on a crescent roll along with a fully cooked fried chicken finger dipped in buffalo wing sauce (like Frank’s Red Hot). Roll the crescents and bake for about 20 minutes. You could also do this with fully cooked shredded chicken tossed in the sauce instead of the fried chicken and bleu cheese crumbles instead of the provolone.

Photo via aisletoaloha.blogspot.com

Jalapeno Poppers

On each crescent triangle, place a dollop of cream cheese, a tsp or so of diced jalapenos and a few small pieces of fully cooked bacon. Pull the corners of the crescent up and twist to create a little purse (this will hold the cream cheese in as it cooks). Bake for about 15 minutes on 350 and start poppin’ (carefully though, that cream cheese will be HOT!).

Photo via oneshetwoshe.com

Apple Dumplings

Place a slice of peeled apple into each crescent triangle and roll up. Put all of the rolls into a casserole dish. Melt 2 sticks of butter, add 1 1/2 cups of sugar and a tsp of vanilla, and pour the mixture over the rolled up apples. Pour a can of Mountain Dew (strange, I know, but it’s delicious!) all around and sprinkle with cinnamon. Bake at 350 for about half an hour.

Photo via bacontimewiththehungryhypo.blogspot.com

Breakfast Wreath

Place 1 can of separated crescent rolls in a sun pattern- wide sides in, points out- on parchment paper. Place a strip of cooked bacon on each triangle, and sprinkle shredded cheese in a circle, covering the bottom (wide) half of the triangles. Follow the same pattern with 5 large scrambled eggs, and fold the points of the triangles over toward the center, creating a wreath shape. Top with more cheese and bake at 350 for about 18 minutes. For more details on this recipe, check out Bacon Time With The Hungry Hypo‘s blog.

Photo via eatatallies.com

Marshmallow Crescents

Place crescent triangles on parchment paper. Dip 8 large marshmallows in melted butter and then roll in cinnamon sugar. Wrap each marshmallow in a crescent roll, making sure all the edges are pinched together. Bake at 350 for 12 minutes.


Mussels Fra Diavola

Mussels may be intimidating if you’ve never made them before, but they are seriously the easiest, most gourmet-looking thing you can make! You basically just cook them until they open- easy peasy. There are tons of ways to prepare them (white wine sauce, yellow curry, mediterranean, etc.), but here’s a basic tomato sauce recipe that is just delish!

1/2 cup olive oil

1 tbsp minced garlic

1 1/2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes

1 (28 oz) can of diced tomatoes

2 tbsp tomato paste

1/4 cup red wine

2 tsp dried oregano

2 tsp dried basil

2 lbs mussels, cleaned and debearded

Heat oil in a skillet over medium-low heat. Add garlic and red pepper flakes and stir. Add tomatoes, tomato paste, wine, oregano and basil. Stir and simmer for 15 minutes or until sauce thickens.

Raise the heat to medium, add the mussels, and cover for 3-6 minutes or until the mussels open. Once they open, they are done. Remove from heat and pour the mussels and sauce in a large bowl. Be sure to discard any mussels that do not open. Serve with toasted baguette slices and/or linguine.