July 4

Red, White & Blue Sangria

Let the patriotic celebrations begin with this red, white and blue white wine sangria. Complete with star-shaped apple slices.

Red White and Blue Sangria 2

The USA takes on Belgium today for the final game in the round of sixteen. With the 4th of July this week I decided to mix up a white wine sangria with red (strawberries), white (apples) and blue (blueberries) fruit floating around in it. But that’s not all folks, the apples are cut into star shapes to make it even more patriotic. It appeals to taste buds and patriots! I unfortunately will be working (without a glass of this sangria in hand) but thankfully the location at which I am today has a TV within view from the front desk, so you better know what channel I will have it set on.

Red White and Blue Sangria 1

One year ago: Taco Bar with Carnitas: Mexican Pulled Pork
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Red, White & Berry Hand Pies

Red, white & berry hand-held pies are stuffed with cream cheese, strawberries, and blueberries. Perfect for any patriotic event!

Red, White & Berry Hand Pies 2

Today’s another big day for the USA soccer team, taking on Germany this afternoon in hopes of continuing on into the knockout round of 16. There are several scenarios in which this could happen: (1) USA beats Germany, (2) USA ties Germany,(3) USA loses to Germany while Portugal and Ghana tie, or (4) USA loses to Germany, Portugal or Ghana wins (therefore tying the USA) and USA scores enough goals to win the goal point differential tiebreaker. In other words the odds are decent but not solid enough to breathe easy. To make matters worse I have to DVR the game and somehow avoid all commentary from the outside world before getting home to watch it myself. I should just go ahead and stuff cotton into my ears now.

Red, White & Berry Hand Pies 3

But if you could care less about soccer or futbol, or whatever it is you want to call it, don’t worry I have a fun mini dessert for you today. These hand pies were made using a star-shaped mini pie press and are stuffed with cheesecake, strawberries, and blueberries which is why they are called red, white and berry hand pies. The star shape of the pie may have blended while baking but there’s also a star-shaped vent cut into the top and that same piece of star-shaped crust is placed on top of the crust for more flair. Patriot enough for the fourth of July, Memorial Day, or for cheering on our nation’s soccer team!

Red, White & Berry Hand Pies 1

One year ago: Creamy Chicken and Herb Skillet
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USA Soccer Cake

Show off your American pride with this surprise-inside USA flag cake, decorated like a soccer ball for the World Cup. Also perfect for Memorial Day and the Fourth of July.

USA Soccer Cake 1

Today the USA soccer team takes on Ghana for their first game in the 2014 FIFA World Cup. USA is in Group G with Ghana (obviously), Portugal and Germany. In other words we’ve got some tough teams to play. To have any hope of being one of the two teams to advance from the group, team USA must beat Ghana as they are likely the most beatable. Unfortunately, Ghana has knocked the USA out of the last two World Cups. Obviously this means it’s time for a fun cake.

USA Soccer Cake 2

To celebrate game 1 for the USA, I originally planed to make cupcakes decorated as soccer balls but decided to take it a step further and try out my own version of a surprise-inside cake – a soccer ball decorated cake with a USA flag inside! Alternating layers of red and white cake are segmented with a round of blue cake which when cut, looks like a miniature flag. This cake would also be perfect for Memorial Day or the upcoming July 4th holiday.

USA Soccer Cake 3

One year ago: Cinnamon-Chocolate Chip Pancakes

Three years ago: Homemade Whole Wheat Pita Bread
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Baby Potatoes with Tomato Corn Saute

Happy Fourth of July! I hope everyone gets to see some fireworks today and enjoy the outdoors. I will be spending most of my day at the lab, but plan to catch some festivities after work. In case you are like me and need something quick to whip up for a party later today, these potatoes are for you.Just boil some baby potatoes and toss with corn, tomatoes, cilantro and some other seasonings and you have the perfect side dish to go along with those grilled meats. When I made this, it was served with some sliced sausage which I threw on top for the photo.

But that’s not all! You may have noticed the appearance of ZipList “Save Recipe” buttons popping up on my recent recipes. That is because I am now partnered with them and am slowly adding that button to every previously posted and new recipe on my blog. Hope you like the new feature!

Baby Potatoes with Tomato Corn Saute

One year ago: Blueberry Cheesecake Popsicles

Two years ago: POM-Berry Ice Pops
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Fruit & Yogurt Popsicles

With the summer heat turning on the oven is not desirable. Most of us would prefer lying by a pool in a bathing suit, but sometimes the dessert cravings hit and they must be addressed. Fruit & yogurt popsicles to the rescue! These popsicles have three layers of pureed fruit and Greek yogurt which means they are bikini-friendly. The white layer was my favorite part because it tasted like cheesecake! Next time I might even out the layers to get more of that layer. Prepare these tonight and they’ll be the perfect treat for your Independence Day festivities tomorrow.

In non-food news, I’m more strapped for cash than usual this month after three bachelorette parties. I hope to be able to continue whipping up fun new recipes to share but if my creativity runs out for things to be made with ingredients I already own in my pantry I may have to cut back on my blogging. Hopefully it will not come down to that or maybe I can round up some guest posters. I wonder what’s in my closet that I could sell on ebay… haha.

Fruit & Yogurt Popsicles

One year ago: Shortbread Cookies
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Red Velvet Cake Batter Dip

Remember the shortbread cookies I posted last week? Well here is the dip I served with them! Check it out over on Peanut Butter and Peppers, in my guest post there today.

RED VELVET CAKE BATTER DIP

Recipe can be found HERE.

Source: The Spiffy Cookie original

One year ago: Chocolate Covered Sunflower Seed Cookies

Blueberry Cheesecake Popsicles

Excessive heat for summer in Memphis is not uncommon. In fact it is the norm. However this summer happens to be extra hot earlier than usual. As a result of this torturous heat, turning on my oven to bake must first be justified by how much I want to sweat while enjoying whatever comes out in the end. But then I remembered that there are some recipes which require freezing instead of heating. Now that is a perfect summer recipe.

For this July 4th Holiday Recipe Club we were given the option of working with blueberries, whipped cream, and/or BBQ, which lead me straight to these popsicles. Originally they were created with wine, which sounded fabulous to me but in an effort to make these kid friendly I opted for pomegranate juice instead.

These required a little more work than popsicles I have made in the past, but were completely worth while. They really do taste just like blueberry cheesecake! The blueberry part is definitely the dominant flavor, but then you get a bite of the cheesecake and it’s magical. Everyone, young and old, enjoyed these!

Be sure to check out the rest of today’s recipes, seen at the bottom of this post.

I didn’t get as good of a shot as I had hoped for. Difficult taking pictures away from home sometimes.

One year ago: POM-Berry Ice Pops
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Shortbread Cookies

Shortbread is not something I make with any sort of regularity. Nor can I recall my last craving for it outside of the short period of time that trefoils are sold by Girl Scouts. Seriously, that might be the only time of the year I eat shortbread unless it’s in the form of a crust for a bigger dessert. But one day I finally formed a spontaneous craving.

Do you ever crave melt-in-your-mouth shortbread? Because these quite literally do melt in your mouth. You can thank the cornstarch and powdered sugar for that. I even added some festive sprinkles to keep you in the spirit for tomorrow, July 4th – Independence Day!

It was tempting to make shortbread truffles out of the raw dough since it lacks eggs. Next time…

I know you are probably wondering what that delicious red dip is pictured with these cookies. Rest assured it will be shared in a guest post on Peanut Butter and Peppers, July 11th.
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Red, White & Berry Shortcakes

Did everyone have a good weekend? Stinks that it is over, but good thing we have a holiday in the middle of the week. Granted I will still be at work but I can pretend. In the meantime, prepare yourself with this festive shortcake! See more on my Culinary.net post today.

RED, WHITE & BERRY SHORTCAKES

Source: Everyday Food July/August 2012

One year ago: Mojito Fruit Dip

Peanut Butter and Oat Granola Bites

Did you watch the Women’s World Cup yesterday? Even though I failed to watch any of the games leading up to it, I was pretty excited that the USA team was in the final game! Sad they didn’t end up winning of course, but it was a good game.

Since it was an occasion of sorts, naturally I felt the need to whip up something. While eyeing the red, white and blue chocolate covered sunflower seeds that I had yet to put away for next July 4, I realized that they were perfect for the game! But I didn’t have a whole lot of time to bake them in anything, so I threw them into these granola bites I had bookmarked awhile ago.

I really enjoyed these, probably because they are mostly peanut butter and didn’t require turning on the oven for once. I couldn’t taste much of the fruit or sunflower seeds, they added more texture than anything. I do think it would be fun to experiment with other nut butters (Nutella anyone!?), and various add-ins. You might be seeing a couple more of these pop up eventually, they might be my new snack!

Ingredients:

3/4 cup rolled oats

2 Tbsp unsalted, roasted sunflower seeds

2 Tbsp chocolate covered sunflower seeds (I had a patriotic color blend)

1/4 cup dried cranberries, roughly chopped

1/4 cup dried blueberries, roughly chopped

2 Tbsp ground flaxseed

1/2 tsp kosher salt

1/2 cup creamy peanut butter

1/4 cup chunky peanut butter

1 Tbsp honey

1/2 tsp vanilla extract

Directions:

  1. In a large bowl, combine all ingredients making sure to evenly distribute all the ingredients.
  2. Roll some of the dough between your hands, if it sticks together it is ready to go. If it feels too dry then add a bit more peanut butter or honey. If it is too wet add extra oats or flaxseed.
  3. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Roll a heaping tablespoon of dough into a 1-inch ball and then place it on the prepared baking sheet. Repeat with the remaining dough.
  4. Chill in the refrigerator at least 30 minutes before serving. Store in airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.

Source: Adapted slightly from Sweet Peas Kitchen

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