Tag Archives: appetizer

I’m just going to write.

I’ve been putting off my first post of 2012 because I’m kind of a perfectionist about some things. I’ve been thinking about ways I want to evolve this blog and I haven’t posted because I haven’t fully figured out what changes I want to make. But I think I’ve realized that that’s ok. It’s my blog and it can be whatever I want it to be! It doesn’t have to be, and won’t be, perfect. Ever. So I’m just going to write!

That being said, Happy New Year! The boyfriend and I had a wonderful long weekend. We got a great deal on a new TV, filled numerous trash bags of clothes for donation, took down holiday decorations, and relaxed a lot. I also made a really yummy appetizer on Sunday that we had while we watched the Patriots game. And it’s so ridiculously easy!

Pepperoni Roll Ups
Recipe from Dinner with the Donnells
– 1 can crescent rolls
– pepperoni
– mozzarella cheese (I think shredded melts best, but string cheese works too!)

Just lay out the crescent rolls on a cookie sheet, top with 3-4 pieces of pepperoni, sprinkle with as much or as little mozzarella as you like…

…and roll ’em up! I kind of stretched the dough to seal off the ends, but nothing oozed out anyway. You might want to do this if you add more cheese. (Shout out to my brother – thanks for the new cookie sheets you gave me for Xmas! They’ve already been used many times!)

Then just bake according to the crescent roll instructions, until they’re nice and golden brown.

Mmmmm. Check out that gooey cheesy goodness.

These were so good! Not the healthiest in the world, but super easy to make and very yummy. The boyfriend’s exact words were – “These are basically heaven.” He’s a meat and cheese kinda guy. 🙂

Dinner tonight was leftover potluck pasta bake, which I’ll post the recipe for this week, and a big batch of our favorite kale chips!

What did you do for New Year’s? Did you take advantage of any sales? 

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Filed under About Me, Food

Thanksgiving recap

I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving! Sorry for the lack of posts recently – the past few weeks have been really hectic!

The boyfriend and I were with my aunt, cousin, her husband, and their five-year-old twins for the holiday. Along with some extended family, there were 15 of us at Thanksgiving dinner! We drove down to Orange County last Wednesday afternoon and just got back Sunday night after a great day at Disneyland!

Unfortunately, I totally neglected taking pictures of all the food. But I managed to snap this one – the remnants of the cranberry apple baked brie appetizer I made – it was a hit!

Cranberry Apple Baked Brie
All I did was unroll a sheet of puff pastry, spread on Trader Joe’s cranberry apple butter, put a wedged of brie in the middle of the puffed pastry, and wrap it all up. I whisked an egg and brushed a thin layer on top of the pastry, and baked at 400 degrees for about 30 minutes until it was golden brown. Here’s a picture of what it actually looked like (from Iowa Girl Eats) since I couldn’t get my camera out fast enough – this dish was devoured!

This was a successful appetizer. It was gone in no time! And you can totally use any type of jam/spread you want for the flavor. I got the idea here, which used pumpkin butter. But the cranberry apple butter was an amaaaaazing complement to the cheese.

I also contributed the mashed potatoes. Unfortunately this is the only picture I got of them, haha – but that’s what 10 pounds of potatoes looks like!

You can obviously cut down the portions on this, but these are the amounts I used to feed 15 people (and we had plenty left over).

Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes
– 10 lbs potatoes, peeled and coarsely chopped
– 2 sticks of butter, at room temperature
– 24 ounces sour cream, at room temperature
– 1/4 cup milk, at room temperature
– 2 heads garlic
– salt and pepper

– To roast the garlic, cut off the tip of each head, drizzle with olive oil, and lightly salt and pepper. Wrap in tin foil and bake at 400 degrees for 30-35 minutes.
–  Cook the potatoes in salted water until fork tender, about 15-30 minutes depending on how full your pot is. I actually separated the potatoes into 2 pots so they would cook faster. Drain and return to pot.
– Add garlic, butter, and sour cream. To add the roasted garlic, hold by the stem of the garlic head and just squeeze the cloves out. They should slide out pretty easily.
– Mash everything together with a masher (I made the boyfriend do this part).
– Add in milk in small amounts at a time, until you’ve reached your desired consistency.
– Add salt and pepper.

I’m so sorry I don’t have a picture of the finished product! But these potatoes tasted amazing. There was just the right amount of garlic, and the sour cream makes them so creamy.

We spent the day at Disneyland on Sunday with the family, so unfortunately we didn’t get to take any leftovers home. (We had a cooler but still didn’t want to leave food in a hot car for the entire day.) But if you still have leftovers, check out these great ideas on how to use them!

Some other photos from the holiday…

Our beautiful turkey, stuffed with apples, onions, sage, and rosemary

One of the table settings

Southern California sunset (the picture really doesn’t do it justice)


What was your favorite part of the Thanksgiving dinner?
I’d have to say my cousin’s yams!


Filed under Food

Garlic cheese wontons

Today I made the perfect football watching snack. Garlic cheese wontons. Yep – they are just as good as they sound. I got the idea from Kristin and one of her fabulous Friday Favorites posts, but the recipe is from The Family Kitchen. I’d been wanting to find a use for the 12 wonton wrappers I had leftover from these babies, and this looked like a great choice for a rainy Sunday afternoon.

Now I’m going to say this right up front – I was so proud of myself for how good these turned out. There are many many times when I try recipes and the final outcome just isn’t the picture of perfection that I think I’m going to end up with. Plus, this was actually my first time frying anything! I know, it’s not that big of a deal. But I was just afraid I’d mess it up. Our stove has a mind of its own and I wasn’t sure if it was at the right temp, if I used enough oil, etc…but they came out perfectly! So, needless to say, I am very proud of myself. 🙂 Ok, on to the recipe.

I started by mincing up some garlic – 2 big guys and a baby.

And despite the recipe’s call for fresh mozzarella, I rolled with string cheese. What can I say, it was already in the fridge.

So I minced up the garlic and cut the string cheese into 12 little nuggets.

Before I assembled the wontons, I put the oil on the stove over medium heat. The recipe used coconut oil but I used canola. Then I put one cheese nugget, garlic, and a little pepper into the center of each wonton. I used an overflowing 1/4 teaspoon of garlic for each wonton, and the boyfriend and I agreed that it was the perfect amount.

Then I brushed 2 edges of the wonton with water and folded them into triangles. Once all 12 were made I carefully slipped them into the hot oil, 4 at a time. I knew I was on the right track because the oil sizzled when I put them in and they started turning golden brown right away.

I turned them over with a slotted spoon to cook both sides until they were nice and crispy. I transferred them right to a plate lined with paper towels to sop up the extra oil.

One thing I forgot, which I mentioned to do with the raviolis, is to press around the filling before sealing to get the air bubbles out. Otherwise it’ll blow up like a balloon when you put it in the oil and it won’t brown evenly, like this little guy.

We warmed up some marinara sauce for dipping – Target brand tomato, basil and garlic.

These were such a treat! We gobbled them right up.

So crispy on the outside (not greasy at all!), and warm and gooey on the inside.

The only thing I would do differently next time is use shredded mozzarella. The string cheese worked great, but it didn’t distribute throughout the wonton. I think that if I sprinkled the whole wonton with shredded mozzarella instead, it would make it so you’d get cheese in every bite. But that’s the only thing I’d change!

I’m so excited to have discovered wonton wrappers. While we were eating these, the boyfriend and I brainstormed about what else would be good to fill these with – jalapenos and cheddar or pepperoni and cheese are the next combos we’re going to try!


Filed under Food