Cheddar Cheese

Jalapeno-Honey Cornbread

Jalapeno-Honey Cornbread

When I was a small child, my grandparents lived in Graham, Texas. As that small child, I remember taking road trips for what felt like 2.5 years in the car to go see them. But once we got there, it was magical. Because, duh. It’s the grandparent's house.

My grandpa had the most amazing garden, always. Specifically, he planted “snapdragons” every year. If you don’t know what those are, they are the most majestic flower because they snap when you squeeze them just right. And if you’re a small child, that will really get you going.

Anyway, my grandmother kept a really cool “den” area where we always had our big, family meals. One specific meal I remember, we had cornbread. And for some reason, when I had this piece of cornbread, it made me cough. Cough, not choke. As a child, I was a weird, weird human. But for some reason, that moment has stuck with me for my whole life. And my family was known for delicious meals, but that moment scarred me for cornbread forever. From that point, cornbread was the food that forever betrayed me.

Anyway, 700 years later, I’ve discovered a way that I LOVE cornbread. See? People can change.

Also, I'm still slightly inclined to exaggeration. Kinda love it.

Jalapeño-Honey Cornbread

1 Stick Butter

1 Cup Milk

1 Large Egg

1 ¼ Cups Yellow Cornmeal

1 Cup All-Purpose Flour

½ Cup Granulated Sugar

½ Teaspoon Salt

1 Cup White Cheddar Cheese, shredded

1 Can Sweet Corn, drained and rinsed

2 Jalapeños, Seeded and diced

2 Tablespoons Honey, approximately

Jalapeno-Honey Cornbread

In a large mixing bowl or Kitchen-Aid, combine Flour, Sugar, Cornmeal and Salt until they’re thoroughly mixed. Melt ½ of the butter and mix in along with the egg and milk. When it is thoroughly combined, mix in the corn and shredded cheese.

This recipe is great for a cast-iron skillet. If you do not have a couple of BFF's or Grandparents who would gift you with a cast-iron skillet, use a regular cake pan or casserole dish. But, I’m going to continue as-if you are using a cast-iron skillet. Modify as necessary with your little bitty brain cells. You can do it.

Add diced jalapeño to the skillet with just a “smidge” of olive oil and cook over medium heat until they just begin to brown.  Mix in the cornbread batter so that the jalepenos get incorporated all the way through, and bake at 400 for 20 minutes.

Melt the remaining butter and stir in honey. Drizzle all over the top of the cornbread so that you have an even coat, and continue baking for 5 more minutes.

This recipe goes GREAT with literally any soup or this chili.

Southwest Mac and Cheese

You know how when you were a kid and you saw that blue box of Mac and Cheese and how excited you used to get? How artificially delicious it was and you just did not even care that the cheese was once a powder? It was like magic for your tummy. And then you know how as an adult you feel the exact same way except now you can eat the whole box by yourself and you just don’t have to tell anyone?

Well, I’m here as support. You don’t have to eat cheese powder anymore. Step away from the cheese powder.

Eat this instead. You can thank me later. I love compliments and coffee. Southwest Mac & Cheese

Southwest Mac and Cheese

1 Large Bag Macaroni Noodles

8 oz. Greek Cream Cheese (or Neufchatel), softened

½ Pint Heavy Cream

2 Cups Shredded Mexican Blend Cheese

¼ Cup Salsa

Small Can of Green Chilies

Salt, Pepper, Garlic Powder & Dried Cilantro

Cheddar Cheese

The crazy fun part of this recipe is that you can use Elbow Macaroni OR Shell Macaroni. Isn't that fun? It’s really up to you and your preferences. Just know that if you make the wrong choice, everyone will judge you and make fun of your shoes behind your back.

As long as you’re okay with that though, YOLO.

Boil the macaroni “al dente.” Drain the water off super good and throw the pasta back into the pot you used. Add the cream cheese. If your supermarket has Greek Cream Cheese, seize it. It has fewer calories, twice the protein of regular cream cheese and it tastes just like Cream Cheese. Do. It.

The heat from the pot should help, if the cream cheese is not super soft. However, mix it well so that none of your “eaters” are bombarded by massive clumps of Cream Cheese. Not that that sounds like a terrible fate or anything.

Add the Chilies, Salsa, Heavy Cream and Mexican Cheese and stir well so that all the ingredients are combined evenly. Also, throw in your seasonings. If the mixture looks a little dry, you can add some milk. This is your masterpiece, Frida.

Side note: If you would like a “hearty mac,” you can add some cooked sausage or chicken, also. Last time, I made my own pork sausage and it was delicious. NBD (no big deal).

Transfer your mac into a casserole dish and top with a little extra cheddar cheese. Bake, covered at 350 for about 20 minutes, or until it gets all bubbly and delicious.

You now have the recipe for your new favorite dish.

D's Cheese Cookies

So, I know that you’re probably spending a lot of time thinking about your New Year’s Resolutions. Or how to avoid a hangover or whatever. I mean, I get that. I’m not going to try and discredit you for that, either. I don’t know your life or your heart.

We all have our loves/priorities.

But for a second, think about something more important. Cheese Cookies.

D, my grandpa, was famous for these. Every holiday season, he would pack a little cookie tin full of these, layered in wax paper. Cause how is that not precious and adorable?

Translation, these are my favorite. Mostly because of my grandpa but mostly because of cheese.

Cheese Cookies

D’s Cheese Cookies

1 pound Sharp Cheddar Cheese

1 Stick of Butter, room temperature

1½ Cup Flour

Dash of Salt

Red Pepper, to taste

First of all, don’t be lazy. Buy the cheddar cheese in the block and shred it yourself. You can use the “shredding” attachment on a food processor but if you buy the shredded, bagged cheese for this, D is going to come haunt your dreams with Spam and cold hotdog weenies. And then you’ll REALLY be sorry.

In a mixer (preferably a stand mixer), mix the flour with the red pepper so that it is dispersed evenly. Add the butter and cheese and mix until it is thoroughly combined and begins to form a big ball.

Very importantly, let the dough rest in the fridge for at least an hour.

If you skip this step, your cookies are going to “melt” when you bake them and then you’re going to feel like a loser that everyone makes fun of on the playground. Who wants that for their life?

Roll the dough into (approximately) 1 inch size balls and bake for 10-15 minutes at 400 degrees.

Let them cool for about 5 minutes and transfer them to paper towels to cool completely (and drain a little oil).

You’re welcome!

 

Parsley Cheddar Biscuits

Let me tell you a little secret. Why? Because that’s what I do. Tell secrets. But only the good ones. Like, if you have a really dumb secret that you don’t really mind if people know, feel free to tell me about it. But if you have a really good and juicy secret….you should definitely tell me about it.

Unless it is about Scandal. Because I am currently just a smidge behind and I don’t have time for some rat-nosed little peasant child ruining my life by telling me what happens.

But you’re not rat-nosed. And if you are, we love you for your shining personality and that’s just going to have to be enough. <3

I adapted this recipe from Martha Stewart. Because, I received a request for Chicken and Dumplings. And let me just tell you, I hate Chicken and Dumplings. Yes, I am communist.

Kidding.

My sister used to beg for Chicken and Dumplings all the tiiiiiiime as a child. And what did I have to do? Eat that crap. Not. A. Fan.

Okay, we probably didn’t eat it ALL the time but when you really don’t love something, it feels like all the time. Can I get a “What, what!” ladies?!

Anyways, this is the first part of my recipe for Chicken and Dumplings. Why? Because if I’m going to make something that I historically do not have a lot of love for, I’m going to make it in a fantastically delicious and selfish way.

Parsley Cheddar Biscuits

Parsley Cheddar Biscuits

1 Cup White Flour

1 ½ Teaspoons Baking Powder

Salt, to taste

Handful of Fresh Italian Parsley, chopped

2 Tablespoons Butter

½ Cup Milk, approximately

½ Cup Shredded Sharp Cheddar Cheese

In a mixing bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients along with the parsley. I didn’t really measure my parsley so use your precious little eyeballs and taste buds.

If you have a stand mixer, use the paddle attachment and flake in the butter so it mixes into the batter well. Add the cheese and milk. I have found that when basically doing anything with cheese, it is best to shred it yourself. The pre-shredded is really easy but it tends to be really dry and does not cook well. #ProTip

Once the batter is mixed well and you’ve reached your desired consistency, transfer the batter in small dollops onto a cookie sheet or pizza stone with a spoon.

Bake at 375 until the tops are so golden and pretty that they can only be related to the majesty of Brad Pitt’s hair. Circa, all the time. Of course.

Fifty Shades of Mac N' Cheese

Aren’t you sick of eating the same old Mac N’ Cheese? No? Me neither.

I love that crap. Doesn’t matter if it is gourmet or cheese dust out of a blue box, if someone makes Mac N' Cheese I will definitely be having fourths.

Don’t even lie. It’s just me, you, and your monitor. We all know the truth. Nod your head in agreement.

I love this recipe because of cheese and everything else in it. It’s delicious and oh so good.

I actually made it for my friends the other day and was trying to think of a clever, witty name. I really wanted something that clearly notified you that this is not your mom's Mac N' Cheese and you're probably not going to see it at your next church potluck. Not that it's not heavenly, cause let's get real. It is. That’s when my dear, goddess of a friend Tricia said, "Fifty Shades of Mac N’ Cheese."

And thus, she is my friend. Because that’s perfect.

Fifty Shades of Mac n' Cheese

Fifty Shades of Mac N’ Cheese

1 Large Package Shell Noodles, cooked al dente

2 tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil

4-5 Baby Portobello Mushrooms, finely chopped

1 Tablespoon Flour

½ Pint Heavy Whipping Cream

6 oz. Fresh Goat Cheese

2 Cups Sharp Cheddar Cheese, shredded

Small Can Sliced Pimentos, drained

Black Pepper, Garlic Powder, Italian Seasoning, to taste

Sautee the mushrooms and olive oil in a medium sauce pan until they become tender. Add the flour and stir well until it cooks down. This gives it a nice, rich creamy flavor. Raise your hand if you don’t love that.

(Notice no hands being raised)

Once the flour is well combined and cooked out, pour in the cream and continue stirring. Over medium heat, add the cheeses, pimentos and seasonings. Once the cheese is melted down and the mixture is smooth as a little baby’s hiney-bow, combine it with your cooked noodles.

If you’re making this ahead of time (which works perfect), pour the mac n’ cheese into a covered casserole dish and bake until the cheese bubbles, about 20 minutes at 350.

I hope you enjoy this sinfully delicious gluttony!