Thursday, December 11, 2008

Colorado snow day beer Chili

There is nothing like a homemade pot of beef chili made with beer on a cold and blizzardy Colorado Sunday! I made this last week as the snow fell for a continuous 12 hours and dumped a total of 18 inches of snow at our doorstep. With my dear Mama and brother visiting from California it was the perfect meal sitting in front of the roaring fire!

3 lbs sliced lean sirloin steak
1 lb ground beef
1 green bellpepper chopped
2 large onions chopped
5-6 large cloves of garlic
2 packets of McCormicks Chili mix
2 cans red kidney beans with liquid
1 can black beans with liquid
1 can great northern beans with liquid
1 can diced tomatoes
1 can Rotelli tomatoes
1/2 to 1 can of corn drained
1 tablespoon of cumin
1 tablespoon of chili powder
1 teaspoon of smokey paprika
1 bottle of beer
About 2 tablepoons of flour
Salt and pepper to taste

In a stockpot brown the steak and remove. In same skillet brown the ground beef and remove. Saute the onions and bellpepper till soft and translucent. Add the garlic and saute about one minute. Return all the meat to the pot and add the seasonings and the flour. Stir constantly for a couple of minutes. Add the bottle of beer and all the beans, corn, tomatoes etc. bring to a boil and then reduce to low and simmer for a couple of hours or put in the oven on low for a couple of hours stirring occasionally.

Garnish with chopped onions, cilantro, cheese and sour cream. Serve with corn bread or in a bread bowl....Yummy....:)

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Spooktacular bacon wrapped eyeballs

If you want something spooktacular and so yummy it's scary for this Halloweens finger food table, you have got to try this dish!

Brats or Italian Sausage cut into about 1 inch pieces (bite size)
Bacon - sliced into either 1/2 or 1/3 per slice
Light Brown Sugar
Crushed Red pepper flakes

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

After slicing the brats/sausage and bacon into desired pieces, wrap a piece of bacon around each piece of sausage and secure with a toothpick. Place each piece onto a large baking dish until not stack on top of each other. Mix about 1 teaspoon of pepper flakes into about 1/2 cup of brown sugar and completely cover the sausage with the mixture. If you need to make more then do so as you want the pieces covered.

Bake for about 30 to 40 minutes, turn with spoon and then bake another 10-15 more minutes or until sausage and bacon is fully cooked. Remove from dish and serve warm.

I think you will be pleasantly surprised as to how incredibly yummy these are...please let me know your thoughts once you have tried them!!!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Simply Scrumptious Rosemary Bacon

Thick Sliced Bacon – As many pieces as you want to make!
Lots of chopped garlic
Lots of chopped fresh Rosemary
Fresh Ground Black Pepper
Parchment paper for lining cookie sheet with

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Chop up lots of garlic and rosemary and combine all together. Line some parchment paper down on cookie sheet and add bacon slices. Sprinkle the garlic/rosemary mixture all over the bacon and then add fresh ground pepper to each slice. Bake at 400 degrees for 10 – 15 minutes or until done.

This is really good on top of burgers, chicken sandwiches, by itself or however you want to use it!

Yummy in the tummy...:)

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Sunday Football Italian Chicken n Sausage Sandwiches

I made this dish this past Sunday and it appeared to be a hit! Great to make ahead and just heat through in the slow cooker the next day...a definite for future Sunday football game watching days!

3 pounds of boneless, skinless chicken thighs
1 1/2 pounds of spicy Italian sausage links
1 teaspoon olive oil
1-2 Tablespoons butter
2 medium onions - sliced
2 bellpeppers - sliced (I like to use yellow or red)
6-8 cloves of chopped garlic
3-4 stems of chopped rosemary
4-5 roma tomatoes - diced
1 teapsoon of red pepper chili flakes
Fresh ground black pepper
1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
Salt to taste
Soft rolls of your choice

Cut chicken and sausage into bite size pieces. Stir fry sausage until almost done. Remove and set aside. Add chicken to same pan and stir fry until almost done. Remove and set aside with sausage. In same pan, add about 1-2 tablepoons of butter to the pan drippings. Add sliced onions and bellpeppers and saute until soft, about 7-10 minutes. Add diced tomatoes, garlic, rosemary and remaining seasonings and continue cooking on medium to low heat about 10 minutes. Can be refrigerated at this point and heated in slow cooker the next day if desired.

Add all to crockpot and cook on low for a couple of hours until all flavors absorb together. Heat rolls in the bag in microwave to soften/steam...scoop filling onto bun and top with cheese if desired. Enjoy!!!!

Monday, October 6, 2008

Mussels and Clams for Opa...

As the days get shorter and the nights cooler, this hearty warm and satisfying seafood combo hits the spot for those who love good ole shellfish. This one is extremely special to me and I dedicate it to my dear Daddy (Opa to many) for throughout his last hours, he appeared to be enjoying this feast with many as he entered the gates of his new home in heaven!

2 pounds fresh clams
2 pounds fresh mussels
1 pound bacon cut into about 1 inch size pieces
1-2 Tablespoons of butter
2 medium sweet yellow onions - sliced
Lots of garlic - 6-8 cloves chopped
1-2 teapsoons of crushed red chili flakes
1/2 to 3/4 cup of fresh chopped basil
Four bottles of beer (I used a wheat)
1-2 bottles of clam juice
2-3 cans of chopped clams
1 loaf of good, crusty sourdough bread sliced in half
Basil/garlic butter - (recipe below)

Rinse the clams and mussels well to rid of any sand and dirt. Make sure to toss any that are already open - these are no good to consume!

In a large enough pot to hold all the above ingredients, fry the bacon till crisp and done. Remove with slotted spoon and set aside. Reserve most of the bacon grease and add about 1-2 tablespoons of butter. Add sliced onions and saute until soft and translucent, about 10 - 15 minutes. Add chopped garlic and cook about 2 minutes. Add the cans of chopped clams (no need to drain liquid) and the bacon you had set aside and stir all together. Add the bottles of beer and clam juice and heat all through. Add the fresh clams and mussels along with the chopped basil...stir all together and place a lid on and turn to about medium heat. Cook until all the clams and mussels have opened - usually takes about 7-10 minutes or so.

Basil butter - Get 1 cube of soft butter, 2 cloves of chopped garlic, 1-2 tablepoons of chopped fresh basil and 1/2 teapsoon of crushed red pepper flakes. Stir all together and slap on that good ole loaf of french bread. Heat in a 425 degree oven until hot and crusty. Slice and serve.

Grab a big bowl along with your favorite brewski or wine of choice and enjoy...I know my Daddy did!!!

Monday, September 29, 2008

The "Morning After" Breakfast Quesadilla's

This is one of my sweeties favorite breakfast's after consuming many of his tasty micro-brews the night before!

A bloody mary goes well with this one...

Flour Tortillas
1 pound bulk spicy Italian sausage
10 eggs
Shredded cheese of your choice
Dash of milk
1 onion chopped
1/2 cup fresh cilantro chopped
1 jalapeno chopped or you can use red pepper flakes
1/2 teaspoon ground Cumin
1/2 teaspoon Chili powder
Salt and pepper to taste

Break up and fry the sausage over medium heat. Add the onion, jalapeno and cilantro when the sausage is partially done. Continue cooking until sausage is fully cooked and onions are soft. Mix the eggs with the milk and add salt, pepper, cumin and chili powder. Add the egg mixture to the sausage mixture and scramble all together until the eggs are done.

Once everything is done get a frying pan and lightly grease. Over medium heat place a flour tortilla in the pan and mound the egg and sausage mixture onto the tortilla and sprinkle with the cheese. Place another tortilla on top and smash down a bit. Watch carefully and when it’s brown and crisp flip over and brown the other side. When done, place on a plate and cut into four triangles. Continue until all mixture is used up. While preparing more, cover the ones done with foil and place in oven on low to keep warm. It’s good with salsa or any type of chili to your liking.

Beerlicious Mashed Potatoes

2 pounds red potatoes
3-4 bottles of beer to boil potatoes in (I used Blue Moon)
1/2 pound of hickory smoked bacon
4 green onions sliced - green and whites included
5-6 Tablespoons of butter or more if needed
Salt and Pepper to taste
Milk, heavy cream or more beer if desired

Wash potatoes. If small enough leave whole, otherwise cut down to smaller equal portions. Boil in beer until done. While potatoes are cooking chop bacon into bite size pieces and fry till done. Remove bacon with slotted spoon, drain on paper towel and set aside. When potatoes are done drain in colander and place hot potatoes back into pot. Smash to desired consistency (I like them a bit chunky). Add butter, salt and pepper and milk, cream or beer if desired. Once you have the consistency you prefer, add the cooked bacon and sliced green onions.


Friday, September 26, 2008

Fran's Fantastic Food Fetish!

This isn't actually my recipe, but it's one I thought was interesting enough to give a whirl:

Gingersnap Chicken Breast with Samuel Adams OctoberFest & Raisin Gravy (Recipe by Chef David Burke)

  • 4 chicken breasts
  • 1 cup gingersnap cookies, ground
  • 2 egg whites
  • Salt/pepper

Season chicken with salt and pepper. Cut with semi-whipped egg whites. Coat with cookie crumbs. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes or until cooked.


  • 2 tbs butter
  • 1 cup chopped onions
  • 1 tbsp garlic
  • ½ cup raisins
  • 12 oz Samuel Adams OctoberFest
  • Juice of 2 lemons
  • ½ cup brown gravy

Method: Sautee onion and garlic until brown. Add beer and brown gravy and reduce by half. Add raisins. Cook for another ten minutes. Mix in 2 oz butter and salt and pepper. Add steamed spinach underneath chicken for a garnish. Pour sauce over chicken and top with lots of chopped chives.