POSTS WITH TAG: comfort food

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    Pizza is one of the most crowd-pleasing meals there is; you can customize it to deal with almost any diet restriction, individual preference, or degree of difficulty. However, it’s not especially impressive looking, but this twist on the pizza roll is.

    This recipe takes pizza ingredients like sausage, spinach, and cheese and wraps them in refrigerated dough, which you slice into pinwheels after baking. It makes a great-looking, simple appetizer or party nibble, or a fun family dinner (what kid doesn't like to dip?). It's as easy as making a traditional pizza, but with a fun visual twist.

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    So, I guess you could say that our family is crazy about potato chips. We just love them. And that's a problem because potato chips are anything but healthy. Especially when you read the calorie content on the back of the bag! I've long been searching for an alternative and I just might have found them in this recipe for baked sweet potato chips.

    You can eat them plain, toss on a bit of seasoning, or create a creamy dip with low fat Greek yogurt and chives. Yummy right? Serve them as a snack or alongside their favorite sandwiches. They also go great packed up and sent in a lunch bag for school. Here's how you make them:

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    I love chocolate. You probably love chocolate. I don’t quite trust anyone who claims to dislike chocolate. I worked in a chocolate shop in college, and people would ask me if I got sick of it; nope, it had the opposite effect. I liked it more, in more forms, than I had before.

    This recipe sounds as amazing as anything the accomplished chocolatier who owned the shop could cook up; it uses five kinds of chocolate. That's right, five. Don't panic, though; you probably have everything in your pantry to make it right now, and if not, you can find it in under 10 minutes at the grocery store. It takes exactly four steps to prepare, and can be made in under 15 minutes. If you use a disposable pan, cleanup is easier (even easier if you lick the bowl, not that we line up for the privilege in my house).

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    Mashed potatoes are a comfort food my kids never knew. Before you gasp in horror, let me explain. I love mashed potatoes. As a matter of fact, they are the first side dish I’ll order in a restaurant. After all, potatoes are nutritious and filling and have absolutely no fat or cholesterol or sodium. They have more potassium than a banana and are a great source of vitamin C. I know all that. But shamefully, I was never able to replicate the creamy, scrumptious mashed potatoes that I loved so much as a child.  

    I tried. I really did. I’d spend a good hour in the kitchen trying to get it right. But still, my mashed potatoes took way too long to make and tasted way too bland. So I just kind of gave up and enjoyed them only as a treat when we were eating out.

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    Whether you're entertaining friends and family or just feel like enjoying some good old comfort food this summer, here are some of my absolute favorite recipes that together make up all the courses of the ultimate comfort food dinner

    What's extra special, aside from their taste, is the fact that the side dishes and dessert can be prepared up to a day ahead, and the main course practically takes care of itself in the Crock-Pot. 

    So, go ahead, invite some guests and serve up some flavorful fare!

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    Sigh. Stale bread. It's the bane of my kitchen. I don't know whether the stuff is in league with the milk, but between those two items, nothing seems to go bad faster once I bring it home from the grocery store. It hurts my heart AND my wallet every time I have to throw a loaf of stale bread away. To that end, I'm forever looking for ways to use that bread. You know, ways that won't make me look like one of those trash-eating Extreme Cheapskates from T.V. -- that's not cute.

    In my adventures in stale-bread-using, I've learned something quite surprising: Some things actually taste BETTER when you use stale bread to make them! It's true though! Some of my fave dishes just wouldn't be the same if I had to use fresh stuff just baked and resting on the rack. Whether or not you choose to tell people you're getting rid of bad bread and penny-pinching is up to you. With these 5 recipes using stale bread, I can guarantee that nobody will be any the wiser should you choose to stay mum! 

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    I am not a camper, at least not a happy one. That being said, the only thing I really like about camping is the food. Something about a meal being cooking in the great outdoors is totally irresistible and is almost worth the dirt, the dust, the bug bites and outhouses.

    So what is a campfire foodie who doesn't like to camp to do? Why, to try to recreate a camping worthy meal in my own kitchen complete with running water, a ceiling and not a single piece of poison ivy.

    Here is my perfect outdoorsy meal to make at home, pine tree smell and mosquitos not included.

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    Your Crock-Pot is probably one of your favorite go-to kitchen tools. It's so easy -- just toss in some ingredients and come home from a long day to a tasty, warm dinner in a snap! But your Crock-Pot can do so much more than just knock great entrees right out of the park.

    Sure, you know it can handle desserts (Crock-Pot brownies anyone?), but did you know that when it comes to sides, the Crock-Pot can take your meal from a one-pot wonder to a veritable three-course culinary tour? I've made myself hungry just thinking about it. Though admittedly, it is lunchtime.

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    When macaroni and cheese is good, it's like you died and went to melted carb heaven. But when it's bad? Oh the sadness. We hate that feeling of disappointment when you've anticipated this creamy, gooey comfort food and it turns out wack. Maybe the sauce is too dry, or it melts weird, or the macaroni is so mushy, there's nothing to chew. Have these happened to you? Let's troubleshoot some of the most common mac and cheese mistakes then. Together, we will give this ultimate love-in-a-bowl every bit of cheesy goodness it deserves.



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    Happy Grilled Cheese Month! Time to celebrate that toasty, buttery, ooey-gooey goodness that comes from melted cheese between crisp bread. One of the things I love most about grilled cheese sandwiches is that there are a bazillion different possible combinations. You could have a different one every day for a year and never repeat an idea! Some of you are traditionalists who love to stick with the original: American cheese between white slices. But for those of you who believe variety is the spice of life, I give you 8 fun, meltingly delicious grilled cheese sandwiches to try before the end of April. Are you ready? Go!

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