New Eating Adventures

Posts tagged side dish

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Garlic Mashed Potatoes

If we are getting technical, I would name this Cauli-tater Mash. This recipe was in Rocco’s last book but it was sub-par so it looks like he tried again. It does taste better and I would make this for a side dish to a steak or chicken dinner.

Peel 1 large russet and cut in 1/2” pieces. Cut off the florets of cauliflower (about 4 cups). Add them to a pot and fill just to the top of the vegetables.

Bring to a boil and let cook until the vegetables are fork tender. Drain and place right back into the hot pot. Add in 1/4 cup milk, 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder, 1 teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon black pepper, and mash!

Each serving is about 3/4 cup of the mash. Add chives to the top if you would like.

The difference from this recipe compared to the one in the previous book, is that the starch from the potato comes through making it taste more like real mashed potatoes and wrapping you in that comfort food blanket.

Revised from Garlic Mashed Potatoes from Now Eat This Diet by Rocco DisSpirito page 221


  • 1 small head of cauliflower
  • 1 large russet or baking potato
  • 1/4 cup of skim milk
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder


  1. Peel the potato and cut in 1/2” pieces. Cut off the florets of cauliflower (about 4 cups). Add them to a pot and fill just to the top of the vegetables.
  2. Cover and bring to a boil over high heat. Remove the cover when it boils and let cook until the vegetable are fork tender. Drain and place back into the hot pot.
  3. Add in the milk and seasonings. Mash until the consistency you like. Serve and top with chives if you desire.

Filed under vegetables side dish

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Chicken and Cheese Poppers

These little poppers would be great for a cocktail party. A little spicy, a little cheese, a little crunch, a little chicken, what more do you need?

The Recipe was shown on Rachael Ray.  

The hardest thing about this recipe was attempting to bread the poppers. The breading process did not stick well to the outside of the jalapeño but was great on top of the the mixture. 

I suggest letting the poppers cool for a few minutes. They are ooey-gooey and really hit everything you are looking for in an appetizer.

(Chicken and Cheese Poppers from Now Eat This Diet by Rocco DisSpirito page 223)

Filed under cheese chicken snack side dish

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Bacon-Cheddar Corn Muffins

In the May issue of Cooking Light Magazine, there was this recipe. A co-worker had just requested that I try make cornbread muffins so it was perfect timing.

These muffins are very easy to make, I just wished I would have made some chili to go along with them. I baked mine for 6 minutes, turned the muffin tin around and baked for another 7 minutes.

These little muffins explode with flavor in your mouth. A slight sweetness from the sugar, nice traditional cornbread taste. The bacon and cumin add a nice smoky flavor, cheesiness from the cheddar, and a fresh warmth from the jalapeño. The jalapeño does not make this spicy (don’t omit!), it gives it another layer of flavor so do not worry if you have mild taste buds.

I brought these to work to share with some co-workers and they loved them! Many of them had more than one. 

(Bacon-Cheddar Corn Muffins from Cooking Light Magazine May 2011)

Filed under cheese muffins side dish snack bacon

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Easy Guacamole

Tonight I made my own guacamole because I didn’t want my avocado to go bad and I had some tortillas that I made into chips.

5 Ingredients: avocado, lime, garlic clove, sun dried tomatoes, shallot.

I scoop out the avocado, squeeze the lime, grate the garlic and shallot on a microplane, and dice the sun dried tomatoes.

And then mash…

…and mix!

When you use great fresh ingredients you hardly need to add anything to make it better! I also made my own chips, which are super easy and perfect with the guac!

Stack and cut the tortillas (corn or flour) into 6 triangles

Place on a greased baking sheet and sprinkle with salt and chili powder. Bake in 400 degree oven for 5 minutes, flip and bake for 5 more minutes.

Sprinkle with lime zest and a little more salt.

Enjoy with your guacamole.

Filed under side dish vegetable mexican


How Do You Salsa?

How do you salsa? Scoop the chunks, dip the juice or a little bit of both? I am more of a dipper and not a big fan of the chunky chunks. Luckily, I have a family friend, Kevin, who makes the most perfect salsa I have ever had! It is flavorful with the perfect amount of heat and the texture that I have always been looking for in my salsas. I had the privilege of helping him make salsa this summer and now I have enough salsa to last me three years. We woke up to get to the farmers market and grocery store to buy all of our ingredients.  We started my scoring the tomatoes, blanching them so we could peel them. We blended the tomatoes and all the other ingredients. That is the key to this salsa, blending all of the salsa gives it the texture that I love. We made a triple batch so we had LOTS of salsa.

Another new experience for me was the canning process.  I have seen it done a couple times on Food Network so I was excited to try it. It made me nervous because you have to be very careful about sanitation and doing it incorrectly could ruin the whole jar. First we boiled the jars to sanitize them and placed them in the oven (this was done the night before).

The next morning we warmed the jars in the oven. (We assume) this is so that the hot salsa doesn’t crack the jar. We put the salsa in the jars with a funnel, wiped the rims clean, placed the lids on and barely tightened the rings. The reason for this is for the air in the jars to escape when the jars are boiled so it “cans” itself. We boiled the jars for 15 minutes.

When we took the jars out the lids started to suction almost immediately as the “popped” in the cooler air. We then tightened the rings all the way and let them cool.

Kevin does this all by himself each summer. It was such a process that I can’t imagine doing it alone. I had so much fun making this salsa and I swear I love it even more because I know how hard it was! Thanks Kev!!

We made 49 jars of salsa, both spicy and mild… If you are lucky enough, maybe you will get a taste ;)

Filed under vegetables snack side dish canning