Saturday, August 18, 2012

Snacky, Appetizer-y Thingies

It's been too hot to cook all freaking summer. I am so sick of spaghetti, eggs, bean burritos and other stupid easy things. Seriously, how many times can a person eat eggs sunny side up on garlic rubbed toast? (Answer: a LOT!) 

The past week we've had a WONDERFUL cold front come through that allowed me to turn on the oven without ratcheting up the temperature in my apartment to 95 degrees. Did I make some unbelievable lasagne (well, I did with friends once) or bake delicious scones and cupcakes? Did I throw in some crazy awesome pizzas? Did I maybe roast a chicken with some veggies? 

Oh hell no. I rubbed a potato in olive oil and salt and threw it in the oven for an hour. No, really, that's what I did and it was glorious. Fluffy and hot and OMGSMOTHEREDINCHEESEBACONANDGREENONIONS. Aaaaah *Homer Simpson drooling*

Once I did that a few times and got over my apparently intense potato craving, I decided it was appetizer time. Little two bite snacks that you can mix and match into a tasty meal. Also, I got tired of tweaking everything I tried and just decided to make things like people say to make them. Yeah, sometimes they could be better, but overall, I've been satisfied - and lazy - so I'm just gonna give you the links and let you have your own fun.

First up: Bacon wrapped, cream cheese stuffed jalepenos.

Cream cheese

I'd give you a link, but it's really unnecessary. Buy a bunch of jalepenos. Cut them in half and cut out the seeds and ribs completely. If you want some spice, leave a little in (but not too much, because Take some cream cheese and fill the cavity. Cut raw strips of bacon in half and wrap a piece around each jalepeno half. Secure it with a toothpick if you're picky about the bacon staying perfectly wrapped. Otherwise, put them on a rack over a baking sheet and bake at 375 for about 25 minutes til done. They can handle a variety of temperatures, just make sure to adjust the baking time. 

I found that 6 jalepenos will take about 4 oz of cream cheese (depending on their size, obviously). So, 12 jalepenos = 1 brick cream cheese = almost full pack of bacon.

Don't use thick cut bacon for this. It will take too long to cook through and the pepper will be mushy by the time the bacon is cooked. If you want a tiny bit more flavor, sprinkle some garlic powder on the cream cheese before you wrap them.

That's it. Try not to eat them all at once, ok? 

Second: Pretzel Bites

I made these as written from Mel's Kitchen Cafe and they were wonderful. Just follow her instructions, ok? I ate them with plain yellow mustard and was practically sitting in the mall food court - heaven, yeah? 
I wish I had made more. Good thing I didn't because it would be the death of me.

I will try them with cinnamon and sugar instead of salt sometime, but I'm a salty person, so this works for me!  Eventually I'll try a parmesan garlic variety. Maybe a jalepeno cheddar? This dough would also make great rolls if you made them bigger. 

Last: Buffalo Chicken Stuffed Pretzel Bites

Well, how could I not? Again, from Mel's Kitchen Cafe. I slightly adjusted the amount of cheese (more bleu, barely any cream cheese) and dumping in a bit more hot sauce. Other than that, I scaled down the quantity and just scarfed them down. Anyone who loves wings with bleu cheese or that buffalo chicken dip that's going around will love these. Make 'em! 

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