Edible Antics

Touring Wisconsin Food

Category: Cooking Tips (page 2 of 6)

Tips for Feeding Your House Guests

tips-feeding-house-guestsI spent my holidays as a guest at two different houses. One hostess in particular was amazing. In the blink of an eye she could prepare a big pot of chili or clean the entire kitchen. I took mental notes to try and figure out how she kept us all happy and full, and here are some tips I hope to take advantage of next time I have a house full of people.

Leave little bowls of munchies out.  Nuts, M&Ms, trail mix, anything that is easy to munch on while watching TV or cuddling up with a book. This will keep your guests satisfied between meals.Wisconsin hostesses will love this gourmet cranberry trail mix.

Have a coffee maker that pleases everyone. Since this was a ski vacation I had frequent cravings for hot beverages. The Keurig machine saved the day since we didn’t have to boil water on the stove for every cup of tea or cocoa. Our hostess had every variety of K-Cups so we could enjoy whatever drink we wanted in no time at all.

Two words: double dishwashers. Ok, so this isn’t the easiest tip in the world since it involves major kitchen appliances and possibly even some construction, but holy moly, I love two dishwashers! Think about it- while one is running, you can fill up the other one. Since you don’t have to unload as often, you can just take the dishes out of dishwasher one as you need them. By the time dishwasher two is full and done running, dishwasher one is mostly empty since you’ve been grabbing dishes out of it. This makes hosting especially easy because there is always a “dirty” dishwasher for guests to load their own dishes in.

tips-feeding-house-guests-2Make a big pot of something comforting. One misconception about soup or chili is that you have to let it simmer all day. Wrong! There are plenty of short cut recipes out there that just involve dumping some cans in a pot and the results are amazing.  My favorite cookbook is the Soup Bible. It’s full of fast recipes with simple ingredients.

Don’t be afraid to order pizza. If cooking and cleaning up after a house full of people becomes overwhelming, pick up the phone and order some pizza!

Best Wisconsin Recipes from Edible Antics in 2012

The year is almost over and I'm reminiscing about the best Wisconsin recipes from Edible Antics in 2012. Here are four of my favorites: Grammy's Beet Pickled Eggs, Breakfast Bratritos, Buffalo Chicken Sandwich and the Discount Double Chicken Quesadilla. 

Grammy's Beet Pickled Eggs– Pickled eggs in a clear brine are a popular food item on Wisconsinmade.com, but I'm used to seeing the red tinted beet pickled eggs made by my grandma. Growing up I didn't like them but she always made them for my Dad. I recently gave them another chance with my grown up taste buds and wow! They are amazing! Now Dad and I fight over them, and I often make them at home. Check out the recipe so you can too. 

Breakfast Bratritos– I'm proud of this one since it is an original recipe with a fun name. I used to be a cereal for breakfast kind of girl, but once my friend told me eggs for breakfast give her a big energy boost I decided to try it, and now I can't start my day without the incredible egg. Since I don't always have time to make omelets from scratch I'm always looking for easy ways to get in my eggs, and making these burritos ahead of time gives me the perfect grab and go breakfast! 

Buffalo Chicken Sandwich – I have tried recipes for buffalo chicken tacos, pizza, chili… but 2012 was the year of teh buffalo chicken sandwich. This creation involves chicken breast, buffalo sauce, butter and ranch dressing mix. Dump the ingredients in the crockpot and forget it. After several hours you can shred the chicken and use it to make sandwiches. Get creative with the toppings- try red onion, avocado, and plenty of Wisconsin blue cheese! 

Discount Double Chicken Quesadilla – This video was sent to me by a Packer fan and I thought it was so hilarious I had to share. Don't take my word for it, here is the video: 

Celebrate Aaron Rodgers Day with Packer Foods on 12/12/12

Happy Aaron Rodgers Day friends! In case you didn’t know, 12/12/12 has been designated as a day for Wisconsinites to celebrate Green Bay Packer quarterback Aaron Rodgers, who happens to be number 12.  News reports say that Aaron appreciates the sentiment but would prefer the attention to be dedicated to other things- so how about we focus on tasty Packer party food?

 

celebrate-aaron-rodgers-day-1Breakfast Bratritos– This hearty breakfast is Green Bay Packer worthy, and gets a little bit of extra Wisconsin flair with the addition of bratwurst in the place of breakfast sausage. These would be tasty for tailgating at Lambeau Field or from your recliner.

 

 

 

 

 


celebrate-aaron-rodgers-day-2Beer Cheese Soup– Another secret to surviving Wisconsin winters is beer cheese soup. This Wisconsin classic is perfect for game day since it easily serves a crowd. Bread practically begs to be dipped in to this beertastic and cheesy soup.

 

 

 

 

 

 


celebrate-aaron-rodgers-day-3Mini Sausages with Cheese Sauce– You’ll be the hit of the Packer party with this appetizer. The first time I made this I realized one package of bacon is EXACTLY enough to wrap one package of mini sausages. Coincidence? I think not! Take the normal bacon wrapped weenies to Wisconsin perfection by serving them in a creamy cheese sauce.

 

 

 

 

Tomato Soup and Gricelebrate-aaron-rodgers-day-4lled
Cheese -If you’re not from Wisconsin and you’re wondering how we
survive these crazy winters, tomato soup and grilled cheese is our
secret. The comfort of grilled Wisconsin cheese and tomato soup to dip
it in makes any day as toasty as the sandwich.  Make your soup and
grilled cheese even more Packer friendly with Sun-Ripened Yellow Tomato
Soup from Campbell’s, not only does it have a Packer pride color, but
the taste of sundried tomatoes add a summery kick to the classic comfort
you expect from Campbell’s.

 

 

Want to celebrate with Packer gear, Packer party food and Wisconsin cheese? Get 12% off Packer gear, giftbaskets and EVERYTHING on Wisconsinmade.com with code Aaron12, today only at Wisconsinmade.com.

 

 

 

 

Packer Football Party Food: Mini Sausages Wrapped in Bacon with Beer Cheese Sauce

packer-football-party-food-1Packer football party food needs to be hearty, rich in flavor and worthy of the Green Bay Packers. Can you picture Clay Mathews eating hummus or finger sandwiches? Nope, I didn’t think so. Clay would much rather have some sausages wrapped in bacon with beer cheese sauce. If you’ve ever had bacon wrapped anything at a party you know how fast people eat it, but add some beer cheese sauce and you might have to go to the store for more ingredients to make another batch. I also discovered that one package of bacon is EXACTLY enough to wrap one package of mini sausages. Coincidence? I think not. I bet someone from Wisconsin thought of it. Continue reading to find the recipe.

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The Ultimate Green Bay Packer Football Food: Aaron Rodgers Discount Double Chicken Quesadilla

The ultimate Green Bay Packer football food magically showed up in my inbox yesterday. Alright, it wasn't magic, it was sent by Packer fan Bryan Yong. I asked him if he had a blog or Facebook page I could send my readers to but nope, he's just a fan with a kitchen, a video camera and an awesome sense of humor. I hope you enjoy this video recipe as much as I did.
Share it with your friends!

Sharp Cheddar Versus Mild Cheddar: Is Older Better When It Comes to Cheddar?

sharp-cheddarA Wisconsin cheesemaker just discovered a forgotten 40 year old block of
cheddar cheese. That’s one old cheese! To give you an idea, a mild cheddar is
generally aged two to three months, and your average grocery store sharp cheddar is aged
about one year, and extra sharp cheddars are aged three to five years.
Specialty cheese shops might have 13-15 year old cheddars, but 40 year old
cheese might be a new record. The cheese is included in a collection of some of
the oldest cheese ever sold according to the Wisconsin
State Journal.

What’s so special about old cheese, really?  

As cheddar cheese matures a few things happen. First, it gets sharper, a
sharp cheese is the kind of cheese that when you bite in to it, it bites back.
The flavor is prominent and assertive, unlike mild cheeses that have a more
subtle flavor.

In addition to the flavor change, the texture also changes. Some aged
cheeses develop tiny calcium deposits that form crunchy crystals in the cheese.
I like this added texture, but some people don’t. This particular 40 year old
cheddar reportedly had an inch worth of calcium deposits on the outside, but
the inside was still fairly creamy. Aged cheddar develops a crumbly texture as
it gets older, while mild cheddar is on the creamier side.

Taste Test

Sharper isn’t necessarily better, it all depends on what you like. The best
way to find out what you like is to taste a variety of cheddars of different
ages side by side. Stick with cheese from one dairy so you have a fair base for
comparison. I recommend Hook’s cheddar because they have cheddars that are aged
five years or more, and if you’re not
near a place that carries Hook’s cheddar, you can order it online here.

I used to think the sharper the better, but after preforming this taste test
I discovered I prefer cheddars in the three to five year range. I don’t enjoy
the older cheddars as much, some of them are so sharp I need to get out the
tongue band-aids!

A Note About Cooking with Cheese

If you’re cooking with cheese, like baking it in a casserole or making a
pizza, don’t use the expensive artisan cheddar. Artisan cheeses are meant to be
savored on their own or maybe with a cracker, some jam or a little fruit. The
cooking process changes the texture and you can’t taste the subtleties in the
flavor when the cheese is combined with other ingredients. Plus if you walk into
a fancy cheese shop and ask for a cheese to put on a pizza they will look at
you funny, I know from experience.

 

What kind of cheddar do you prefer? Mild? Sharp? Extra Sharp?

National Bratwurst Day – Celebrate with Wisconsin Bratwurst

In honor of National Bratwurst Day (August 16th) fire up the grill and cook some Wisconsin bratwurst. Be sure to throw a few extras on the grill so you can use the leftovers to make some of the tasty bratwurst recipes found here on Edible Antics. I’ll even let you in on a little secret: in most recipes you can use bratwurst instead of whatever type of sausage is listed. Here are some examples of my original bratwurst creations:

national-bratwurst-day-1Wisconsin Gumbo. Wisconsin meets Louisanna in this easy crockpot dish. I made it Wisconsin-y by adding bratwurst instead of the usual adouille sausage. My friend Patti tells me she uses duck broth and fish (instead of the shrimp broth and shrimp) in her Wisconsin-style gumbo. That’s why I love cooking, you can take the concept (a gumbo) and make it to fit the food that’s available (bratwurst).

 

 

 

 

 

national-bratwurst-day-2Breakfast Bratritos. I am a breakfast fanatic, especially when it comes eggs. I also like to grab my breakfast and run out the door, so one Sunday I made a big patch of breakfast burritos with bratwurst instead of sausage and froze them to eat throughout the week. This also makes the perfect food for an early morning tailgate at Packer, Badger and Brewer games.

 

 

 

 

 

Looking for more Bratwurst recipes? Check out some of the creative bratwurst dishes I’ve found on Pinterest:

Bratwurst Pizza – Mark’s family is from Wisconsin, and apparently he passed the “put bratwurst on everything” theory on to his wife, Ana. They post on a blog called A Plus M.

Bratwurst, Jalapeno and Caramelized Onion Potstickers – This if from a blogger who calls herself the Foodette, be warned, her blog is just as sassy as her cooking.

Cupcakewurst – This one doesn’t involve any actual bratwurst, but it’s a pretty impressive resemblence. This recipe is from the Cupcake Project blog.

You can also enter to win bratwurst in Wisconsinmade.com Bratwurst giveaway. Click here to enter.

What’s your favorite way to eat bratwurst?

 

Pinterest Recipes – How to Avoid a Recipe Fail

I have a problem. I am addicted to Pinterest. Seriously. I pin at work (it’s ok, it’s my job!), I pin at home, I pin on my phone when there is no computer around.  Then when I’m done pinning I cook some of the Pinterest recipes on my food board. If you haven’t been on Pinterest, the best way to describe it is a virtual bulletin board. You browse pictures and then “Pin” the ones you want on your pin board. Once you see how many amazing recipes and food ideas are on Pinterest, you’ll understand why I love it so much.

One problem with Pinterest recipes is that sometimes the image on Pinterest compared to how your food actually turns out is like the difference between a fast food cheeseburger on TV and the one you actually get from the drive-thru. For example, when you want to make this:

 

From Flickr.

And it turns out like this:

 

From Pinterest Fails.

 

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Blue Cheese- The Science Behind Moldy Cheese

Blue cheese is a love it or hate it food for understandable reasons. Some people just can’t stomach the idea of eating mold. In case you didn’t know, that’s what the blue is, good old fashioned mold. Which raises the question, how come it’s ok to eat moldy blue cheese and not those fuzzy refried beans leftover from taco night last week? An even more interesting question, what about that moldy brick of cheddar? Is that alright to eat? Put on your learning cap faithful readers because here are the answers to these burning questions.

 

 

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Breakfast Burritos with a Wisconsin Twist: Make-Ahead Breakfast Bratritos!

As an avid food blog reader and writer, I have noticed some foods are seriously under celebrated. The perfect example is the breakfast burrito. You can make a big batch on Sunday and freeze them so you have a healthy, filling, portable, quick and satisfying breakfast all week.

Even a food as versatile as the breakfast burrito can’t have it’s own post on Edible Antics without a Wisconsin twist. That’s where the breakfast bratrito comes in. You can chop up leftover brats from a weekend cookout, or open up the casing of some fresh brats and grill up the meat inside like you would ground beef. Continue reading for the recipe as well as instructions on how to freeze and reheat this tasty Wisconsin breakfast.

breakfast-burritos-1

 

 

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