Italian Marinated Cheese

Italian Marinated Cheese

Italian Marinated Cheese

Cheese and crackers are an easy, go-to appetizer for any type of party, because after all who doesn’t like  cheese. No matter what type of event you go to, the traditional cheese and cracker plate is there……so how about making it something to remember……..???

Italian Marinated Cheese is several things:

  • Easy to make
  • Easy to take along
  • Stores for several weeks
  • Looks elegant
  • Is super tasty

With the holidays or anytime you  are in charge of bringing the cheese tray, make up a batch of this cheese.

I purchased cheese that was already cubed……..because, even with my cheese knife ……..one of my favorite tools…….its still a pain in the a#@ to cut cheese and make it all perfect little cubes. Let the people who make the cheese, cut the cheese….tee hee……….but seriously, it makes this recipe super easy. Place all the cubes in a single layer in a dish about 2 inches in depth.

The marinade  is a simple vinaigrette with Italian seasoning, red peppers, green onions, garlic, oil and vinegar. The green onions and red peppers give it a festive look and add a great taste to the marinade.

Once you have the cheese in the dish and the marinade made, pour the marinade over the cheese and let it set for at least 8 hours so the flavors really get into the cheese.

Italian Marinated Cheese

Then when cheese tray duty calls, just put the Italian  Marinated Cheese in a pretty container and serve with some nice crackers. Some fresh fruit on the side adds to the elegance, and you will be the talk of the party……..it will be our little secret about how easy it was……..;)

Italian Marinated Cheese Collage

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Italian Marinated Cheese

Italian Marinated Cheese

  • Author: Marty Boyd
  • Prep Time: 8 hours
  • Total Time: 8 hours 10 minutes
  • Yield: 4 cups
  • Category: Snack
  • Method: Marinade
  • Cuisine: Italian

Ingredients

  • 1-8-oz package of Colby and Monterey Jack cheese cubes (about 2 cups)
  • 1-8-oz package of Cheddar Cheese cubes (about 2 cups)
  • Marinade:
  • 1/2 c. olive oil
  • 1/2 c. white wine vinegar
  • 3 T. chopped fresh parsley
  • 3 T. minced green onions
  • 2 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup minced red pepper
  • 2 tsp. sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp. freshly ground pepper

Instructions

  1. Combine all marinade ingredients and whisk until the mixture is emulsified, set aside.
  2. Arrange cheese cubes in a single layer in a shallow baking dish.
  3. Pour marinade over cheese slices.  Cover and refrigerate at least eight hours.
  4. To serve, transfer cheese to a serving dish, spoon marinade over the cheese.  Serve with assorted crackers.

Keywords: cheese, appetizer, red pepper, spice, make ahead, easy

 

Red Pepper Jam

Red Pepper Jam

Red Pepper Jam

You know that panicy feeling when someone stops by unexpectedly during the holidays………you bolt to the kitchen to see what you can pull together in a hillbilly hurry. Well, never fear I got the thing right here……Red Pepper Jam.

I know everyone is aware of a company called Tastefully Simple. They have really great products…….delicious foods and gifts for every day and every occasion. I have, in the past purchased a product called Sweet Pepper Jalapeño Jam, a friend had a party and it was one of the samples and I loved it. They just poured it over cream cheese and served it with crackers and ooh la la appetizer. So, I figured I could make something similar….and I did.

It’s fairly easy to make, the hardest part and it’s not really hard…..more time consuming is the cooking time. It needs to reduce and that takes about 45 minutes. But it has a beautiful upside…….it will keep in the frig for a month…..yes siree……… a whole month!

Make it just before Thanksgiving and it will help you sail right through the holidays for all those moments when you need to fix something in a hurry. 

Keep a package of cream cheese in the frig and when company comes a calling, put the cream cheese on a nice plate, pour over your secret weapon ……..Red Pepper Jam…….and serve with crackers, or my personal favorite…….. pita chips. As you can see, I have a really cute plate that my Elementary staff gave me last year for a Christmas gift………Snowman whose mittens and boots that are little serving spreaders…….it soooo cute! Thank you ladies!!!!

You can also use the Red Pepper Jam as a condiment on sandwiches or burgers, as a glaze for vegetables or meat, or as a dip. It’s sweet and spicy and damn delicious!!!

Red Pepper Jam Collage

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Red Pepper Jam

Red Pepper Jam

  • Author: Marty Boyd
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 45 minutes
  • Total Time: 50 minutes
  • Yield: 2 cups dip
  • Category: Condiment
  • Method: Simmer
  • Cuisine: American

Ingredients

  • 2 red bell peppers, finely chopped (about 2 1/2 cups)
  • 1 -28 oz can crushed tomatoes
  • 5 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 1 jalapeño seeded and finely minced
  • 1/4 cup cooking sherry
  • 1/4 cup white balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 c granulated white sugar
  • 1/2 c brown sugar
  • juice of freshly squeezed lemon
  • 1/8 -1/4 t red pepper flakes
  • 1/8 t kosher salt
  • 1/8 t ground black pepper

Instructions

  1. Place all ingredients in a large deep skillet and bring to a boil. Reduce to an simmer and cook until thick and syrupy (about 45 minutes).
  2. The jam will thicken as it cools. Will keep in the refrigerator for up to 1 month.

Keywords: condiment, spicy, sweet, red pepper, snack, appetizer, tomato

 

Bacon Filled Cherry Tomatoes

Bacon Filled Cherry Tomatoes

Bacon Filled Cherry Tomato

What can you say about bacon that hasn’t been said……..it simply makes everything better!

It’s the Holiday Season…….so loopty lou, and loopty lie, and don’t forget about the pumpkin pie, it the holiday season………sorry……… too much Christmas music already…….sometime you just have to burst into song…..tee hee!

But, it is the Holiday Season is here and that means parties are here. Parties need food, finger food to be exact. Finger food with bacon………Bacon Filled Cherry Tomatoes. These little gems are a pop in your mouth taste treat. Like a mini BLT……… with out the L ……..and no bread……..but they are loaded with bacon!

I started making these years ago, and they were my go to appetizer for a looooong time. This is another recipe that was originally from one of those little cookbooks from the check out lane at the grocery store. If I would have in my wildest imagination thought I would write a food blog someday, I would have written down where I got the recipes from so I could give credit where credit is due.………oh wait, when I first started buying these little books, no one knew what a food blog was….LOL……..the times they do change.

Bacon Filled Cherry Tomatoes 3

 They are really quite simple to make, fry up and crumble bacon, add green onion, basil, some parmesan cheese, and Miracle Whip ………sorry but I do not like mayo, but if you do please use it in place of the Miracle Whip…….if you really want too……….mix all together and stuff into hollowed out cherry tomatoes. A melon baller makes this process a breeze.

I made these for Tim the first time last week. He does not care for just a tomato, so I wasn’t sure how he would like these…….enter bacon……he loved them……..enough said!

Not only are these Bacon Filled Cherry Tomatoes a treat for your taste buds, they are pretty, and red, with a little green and Christmasy……….hence…..the perfect party appetizer!

Bacon Filled Cherry Tomatoes Collage

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Bacon Filled Cherry Tomatoes 2

Bacon Filled Cherry Tomatoes

  • Author: Marty Boyd
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: 24
  • Category: Appetizer
  • Method: Combine
  • Cuisine: American

Ingredients

  • 1 pound applewood smoked bacon, cooked and crumbled
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped green onions
  • 2 tablespoons chopped basil
  • 2 tablespoons parmesan cheese, shredded
  • 1/2 cup miracle whip
  • 24 cherry tomatoes

Instructions

  1. In a medium bowl, combine bacon, green onion, basil, parmesan cheese, and miracle whip.
  2. Slice a thin piece off the top of each tomato, enough to expose the inter flesh. Using a melon baller, or a small spoon, scoop out the inside of the tomatoes.
  3. Invert the hollowed tomatoes on paper towels to drain.
  4. Fill with bacon mixture and garnish with extra parmesan cheese or basil if desired.

Keywords: cherry tomato, bacon, green onion, appetizer, parmesan cheese