Gunter Hotel Cheese Spread

Gunter Hotel Cheese Spread

I’m really showing my age on this one! Back in the day, before the famous Gunter Hotel in San Antonio was purchased by the Sheraton group, they served this cheese as a little treat in the hotel bar and restaurants. It’s kind of like pimento cheese, but without any pimento. It has a fantastic flavor and is so easy to make. Our local newspaper published the recipe in 90s, when I was 12. Ok, I wasn’t 12, but let’s not get into that. Serve this yumminess at your next gathering and get ready for the happy faces!

Gunter Hotel Cheese Spread

Category: APPETIZERS, Dip & Salsa

Servings: 12 Servings

Gunter Hotel Cheese Spread

Ingredients

  • 1 (8 oz) package cream cheese
  • 8 ounces of shredded cheddar & jack cheese
  • 1/3 cup each of celery & carrot
  • 1/2 cup green pepper
  • 1/3 cup red pepper
  • 1/2 cup white onion
  • Salt & pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. Cut up the vegetables into small chunks. Place in a food processor and pulse until finely chopped.
  2. Add the cream cheese and cheddar & jack cheese to the food processor and pulse until the vegetable mixture and cheese are combined.
  3. Place spread in a serving bowl.
  4. Serve with crackers, flat bread chips or Melba toast
http://michellesipsandsavors.com/gunter-hotel-cheese-spread/

Party Picadillo Dip

Party Picadillo Dip

I got my hands on this recipe over 25 years ago from a gentleman who was a fellow resident in a huge historical home I used to live in. The house was in King William, a historical area of San Antonio. Every year, he would host a big party in conjunction with the King William Fair, which is one of San Antonio’s official Fiesta events. The recipe holds great memories, not only from his fabulous parties, but from the many celebrations I have also served his fabulous dish. It’s got lots of ingredients, but it’s so worth it! Enjoy and create your own memories.

Party Picadillo Dip

Category: APPETIZERS, Dip & Salsa

Servings: 25 Servings or More

Party Picadillo Dip

Ingredients

  • 1 lb each of ground beef & ground pork
  • 1 (6 oz) can tomato paste
  • 4 peeled & diced medium tomatoes
  • 1 small jar chopped pimento
  • 3 green onions
  • 1 green bell pepper
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • 2 jalapeños w/the seeds removed
  • 1 large jar pickled cocktail onions
  • 1 box of white raisins (about 1 1/2 cups)
  • 1 tsp each of Accent, paprika, comino, cayenne & oregano
  • 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • Salt & pepper to taste
  • 2 medium cans of sliced mushrooms
  • 1 cup blanched sliced almonds
  • 2 medium cans of sliced black olives
  • 1 can beef consommé

Instructions

  1. Brown the beef & pork. Once browned add the tomato paste & stir until combined. Add the prepared tomatoes & pimento and simmer.
  2. In a food processor, chop the garlic, green onions, bell pepper & jalapeño. In a large pot heat some olive oil & add the chopped vegetables.
  3. While the vegetables are getting fragrant, add the cocktail onions to the food processor to chop. Add to the large pot.
  4. Add in all the spices and stir to incorporate.
  5. Now add the browned meat & tomato mixture to the large pot.
  6. Mix in the raisins & beef consommé and let simmer for 30-40 minutes. Stir occasionally.
  7. Before serving, add in your mushrooms, olives & almonds. Heat through.
  8. Serve in a heated chafing dish or a crock pot set on low.
  9. Serve with tortilla chips.
http://michellesipsandsavors.com/party-picadillo-dip/

Smoked Beetroot Hummus

Smoked Beetroot Hummus

Jazz up your holiday celebrations with this amazing hummus! The vibrant color is from a fabulous beetroot ketchup that is delicious on its own. The smoky flavor adds a depth of flavor, making this hummus extra special. Enjoy!

Smoked Beetroot Hummus

Category: APPETIZERS, Dip & Salsa

Servings: 8 Servings

Smoked Beetroot Hummus

Ingredients

  • 1 (15 oz) can of garbanzo beans, drained
  • 1/4 cup smoked beetroot ketchup (I used Foraging Fox Smoked Beetroot Ketchup)
  • 1 heaping TBS tahini paste
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 TBS hemp seeds
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp coriander
  • 1/2 tsp pink Himalayan salt
  • 1/2 tsp white pepper
  • 1/4 cup filtered water
  • Sliced radishes, rough chopped cilantro, olive oil and hemp seeds for garnish

Instructions

  1. Blend all ingredients in a food processor or blender until smooth. Place in desired dish and garnish. Serve with chips or as a compliment to other foods.
http://michellesipsandsavors.com/smoked-beetroot-hummus/

Crispy Eggplant w/Honey & Cojita Cheese

Crispy Eggplant w/Honey & Cojita Cheese

When we were in Barcelona, Spain in September, this was a popular tapa served in many restaurants. I decided to recreate it, and was it ever delicious! Just the right amount of sweetness, heat and tang! The grated cojito cheese was perfect for this dish!!

Crispy Eggplant w/Honey & Cheese

Category: APPETIZERS, Bites

Servings: 2 Servings

Crispy Eggplant w/Honey & Cheese

Ingredients

  • 2 small eggplants or 4 baby eggplants
  • Sea salt
  • Flour
  • Olive oil
  • Honey, grated cojito cheese, Allepo red pepper & parsley for garnish

Instructions

  1. Wash and then thinly slice your eggplant on a mandolin. I sliced mine at the 1/8 setting. Lay the slices single layer on a tray lined with parchment paper. Sprinkle all the slices with sea salt. Let sit for 30-45 minutes to sweat out most of the liquid.
  2. Once the allotted time has passed, pat all the pieces dry with paper towels. This will also remove most of the sea salt. Set aside.
  3. In a shallow dish, add 1 – 2 cups of all purpose flour.
  4. Heat 1/2 cup olive oil on medium high heat.
  5. Dredge the eggplant slices in the flour, a few at a time.
  6. Place the floured slices in the heated oil and lightly brown on both sides. They will brown quickly, so you have to work fast.
  7. Serve immediately with a drizzle of honey, a sprinkle of Allepo red pepper and a generous amount of cheese. Finish with chopped parsley.
http://michellesipsandsavors.com/crispy-eggplant-w-honey-cojita-cheese/

Tomatillo & Avocado Salsa by The Culinary Institute of America

Tomatillo & Avocado Salsa by The Culinary Institute of America

My family was mesmerized by this magical salsa! You can use it as a dip or sauce. And, it keeps fresh for 3 days (maybe more). During the Plant-Forward Cooking Boot Camp I participated in at The Culinary Institute of America, we made it to go with Barbecued Jackfruit Tacos. The tacos were super spicy, so this salsa served to cool them down. I brought home leftovers and we ate it with grilled chicken and as a salsa for breakfast tacos. Delish!

Tomatillo & Avocado Salsa by The Culinary Institute of America

Category: APPETIZERS, Dip & Salsa

Servings: 12 Servings

Tomatillo & Avocado Salsa by The Culinary Institute of America

Ingredients

  • 2 jalapeños, stems & seeds removed, and rough chopped
  • 10 tomatillos, husks removed, rinsed & quartered
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled & rough chopped
  • 1 small white onion, peeled
  • 1 small juiced lime
  • 1/2 cup coarsely chopped cilantro
  • 1 medium avocado, pitted & peeled, and cut into large chunks
  • Sea salt, to taste

Instructions

  1. In a blender, purée the everything except the cilantro and avocado.
  2. Add the cilantro & avocado and briefly blend until slightly course.
  3. Taste the mix and add sea salt, as needed.

Notes

Slight changes were made to the original recipe for improved taste.

http://michellesipsandsavors.com/tomatillo-avocado-salsa-by-the-culinary-institute-of-america/

Purple Sweet Potato Hummus

Purple Sweet Potato Hummus

I found some purple sweet potatoes at the grocery store the other day & had a moment. The hummus ended up being more of a vivid pink, which I think is just gorgeous! It tasted even more G O R G E O U S! Topped it with olive oil, za’atar, sumac, tri-color peppercorns and thyme from my garden!

Purple Sweet Potato Hummus

Category: APPETIZERS, Dip & Salsa

Servings: 8 Servings

Purple Sweet Potato Hummus

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups cooked purple sweet potato (I baked & then peeled mine)
  • 1/3 cup tahini
  • 2 TBS hemp hearts
  • 3 cloves of garlic, crushed
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 1/2 tsp coriander
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp pink Himalayan salt
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup filtered water (add more, if needed)
  • Garnish with olive oil, white, pink & green peppercorns, za’atar & fresh thyme

Instructions

  1. Add all ingredients (except garnish) to food processor, and pulse until smooth. You want the consistency to be soft enough to dip a chip in the hummus without breaking.
  2. Garnish with additional olive oil and the other recommended spices and herbs.
http://michellesipsandsavors.com/purple-sweet-potato-hummus/

Turmeric Hummus

Turmeric Hummus

I’m on a bit of a turmeric kick! This hummus is light, tasty & versatile. Eat it with chips, smear it on a tostada or enjoy it with falafel or kibbeh. Don’t you just love the color?!

Turmeric Hummus

Category: APPETIZERS, Dip & Salsa

Servings: 8 servings

Turmeric Hummus

Ingredients

  • 1 (15 oz) can of chickpeas, drained
  • 1/3 cup tahini paste
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp coriander
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • S & P to taste
  • 1/4 cup filtered water
  • Sumac, colorful peppercorns, garlic blooms, hemp seeds & olive oil for garnish

Instructions

  1. Blend all ingredients in a food processor or blender until smooth. Place in desired dish and garnish with olive oil & spices of your choice. Serve with grainy chips or as a compliment to other foods. I like this with falafel or kibbeh.
http://michellesipsandsavors.com/turmeric-hummus/

Tex Mex Chile con Queso

Tex Mex Chile con Queso

APPETIZERS

Viva Fiesta! This traditional Tex-Mex queso is made with creamy & smooth Kraft velveeta cheese. I like to elevate my “queso” by using fresh tomatoes, onion, jalapeños & a bit of white wine. If you’re a purist, you eat this molten liquid gold, as is, with seasoned tortilla chips. If you are feeling adventurous, you can add a scoop of picadillo or chopped brisket. In our family, we often add cooked & crumbled sausage. Pretty much anything goes! Any way you choose to consume a bowl of this addictive concoction is fine with me! Enjoy!

Tex Mex Chile con Queso

Category: APPETIZERS, Dip & Salsa

Servings: 6 Servings

Tex Mex Chile con Queso

Ingredients

  • 1 TBS olive oil
  • 1 tomato, chopped
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 2 jalapeño peppers, seeded and chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • Sea salt & pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup good dry white wine
  • 1 (16 oz) Kraft Velveeta Cheese, cut into chunks
  • Serve with seasoned restaurant quality tortilla chips

Instructions

  1. Heat olive oil and add tomato, onion and jalapeño peppers. Sauté on medium heat for 1-2 minutes. Add garlic and season with salt and pepper. Continue cooking on medium heat. When garlic is fragrant add the wine and deglaze the pan.
  2. Lower heat to simmer and add in the chunks of cheese. Stir cheese until melted and incorporated into the vegetable and wine mixture.
  3. Pour the chile con queso into a bowl and serve with tortilla chips.
http://michellesipsandsavors.com/tex-mex-chile-con-queso/

Grilled Ciabatta & Labneh Garlic Spread

Grilled Ciabatta & Labneh Garlic Spread

APPETIZERS

We had a quiet Saturday evening ~ I finished baking the flat of Poteet strawberries I purchased this past Tuesday. The hubs cracked open a bottle of cab and grilled these thick slices of ciabatta from one of our local bakeries, The Bread Box. I made this gorgeous spread w/tahini, lemon juice & roasted garlic. Y’all, this ciabatta was crispy on the outside & super moist on the inside ~ perfect brushed w/olive oil & toasted on a hot grill. I got the recipe for this spread from https://www.ful-filled.com

Grilled Ciabatta & Labneh Garlic Spread

Category: APPETIZERS, Dip & Salsa

Servings: 12 Servings

Grilled Ciabatta & Labneh Garlic Spread

Ingredients

  • 12 oz labneh or thick Greek yogurt
  • 2 - 3 TBS tahini
  • Juice of 1/2 lemon
  • 3 cloves roasted garlic, smashed
  • Dash salt
  • Za’atar, black sesame seeds & olive oil for garnish
  • Thick sliced Ciabatta

Instructions

  1. Mix labneh or yogurt with tahini, lemon juice, smashed garlic & salt in medium bowl. Transfer to serving bowl and swirl top of spread. Drizzle a bit of olive oil and too with sesame seeds & za’atar.
  2. Brush desired number of Ciabatta bread slices with olive oil. Toast bread in a hot grill so that each piece of bread has grill marks.

Notes

Original recipe found on Instagram from @ful.filled

For the Roasted Garlic: Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Cut head top of each garlic bulb. Wrap in foil, leaving top open. Pour a 2 tsp of olive oil over top & sides. Close the foil so that entire garlic bulb is covered. Placed on a baking sheet. Roast for 30-45 minutes.

http://michellesipsandsavors.com/grilled-ciabatta-lebneh-garlic-spread/

Grilled Calamari w/White Bean & Olive Salad

Grilled Calamari w/White Bean & Olive Salad

SIDES

There is a restaurant in San Antonio that serves grilled calamari. Until recently, I did not realize that this calamari was a steak. You know, as in a piece of seafood the size of your hand. They are also kind of hard to find, at least here. We have only one or two stores that regularly carry them. The grilled calamari is so tender, and it is wonderful with this salty, yet fresh white bean and olive salad, which I found at the link at the bottom of this entry. I made a few tweaks for my taste and ease of preparation, which you will find in my revised recipe.

Didn’t my hubs get some great grill marks on those steaks? This whole dish was as good as it looks.  You’ve got to try it!

Original recipe: https://www.sunset.com/recipe/grilled-calamari-steaks-olive-bean-salad

Grilled Calamari w/White Bean & Olive Salad

Category: Salads, SIDES

Servings: 4 - 6 Servings as an Appetizer

Grilled Calamari w/White Bean & Olive Salad

Ingredients

  • 1 can (14 oz.) white beans, rinsed and drained
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 4 TBS olive oil
  • 1 tsp red chile flakes
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 3/4 cup mixed pitted olives, rough chopped
  • 1 celery stalk
  • 1 green onion
  • 1 anchovy filet
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1/2 cup Italian parsley
  • 2 TBS capers
  • 2 calamari steaks
  • 1 lemon quartered

Instructions

  1. For the salad:
  2. Put white beans, chopped olives, chile flakes & pepper in a bowl. Put the remaining ingredients (except the calamari & quartered lemons) in a food processor. Pulse until all ingredients are rough chopped. Add to bowl of beans and olives, and mix thoroughly. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
  3. For the calamari:
  4. Heat the grill to 450 degrees.
  5. Brush the calamari with olive oil and season salt and pepper. Leave out so that it is at room temperature for grilling.
  6. Grill on high heat until grill marks form, about 2-3 minutes on each side. Serve with the salad.

Notes

Do not add additional salt - the anchovy & olives are salty enough. Recipe inspiration from https://www.sunset.com/recipe/grilled-calamari-steaks-olive-bean-salad

http://michellesipsandsavors.com/grilled-calamari-w-white-bean-olive-salad/

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