appetizers

Labor Day Picnic Foods

Labor Day is coming up – a holiday that commemorates the workers who have helped made this country great. To many, it also heralds the end of summer and the last 3-day weekend before school starts.

So why not enjoy the last blast of summer with a great picnic potluck with friends and family? And twist up your menu with some new drinks and dishes. Start out with a refreshing drink such as a house-made sparkling blackberry lemon soda – perfect for using up the last of those wild picked blackberries! Serve it dry or add a splash of your favorite local vodka or gin.

For the food, set out an array of apps to make a meal of it. Try giving a sassy twist to some old favorites like Sriracha Deviled Eggs, and try something new in the dip department like Creamy White Bean Dip with Garlic and Rosemary topped with chopped up fresh summer tomatoes, and served up with fresh cucumbers, and grilled pita for dipping.

The possibilities are endless and delicious! –Kathy

Sriracha Deviled Eggs
Sriracha Deviled Eggs – Yum!
Photo by Kathy Casey Food Studios®.

Sriracha Deviled Eggs with Crunchy Cucumber & Shrimp
Sriracha adds a spicy kick and a beautiful color to these festive eggs. The shrimp and cucumber topping adds a fresh note and fun texture. Be sure to use eggs that are at least 10 days old or the shells will not peel off easily.

Makes 24

1 dozen hard-cooked eggs

Filling
1/4 cup mayonnaise
3 Tbsp. Sriracha hot sauce
1/4 tsp. Kosher salt
2 Tbsp. thinly sliced green onion
2 Tbsp. finely minced celery

Topping
2 tsp. vinegar
1 tsp. sugar
1/3 cup chopped cooked shrimp, well drained
2 Tbsp. finely minced English cucumber
1 Tbsp. finely minced red pepper (optional)
1 Tbsp. chopped fresh cilantro or parsley

Garnish: extra Sriracha sauce and cilantro leaves (if desired)

Halve the eggs lengthwise and transfer the yolks to a mixing bowl. Set the egg white halves on a platter, cover, and refrigerate.

With a fork, mash the yolks to a smooth consistency. Add the mayonnaise, Sriracha and salt, and mix until smooth (you can also do this in a mixing bowl with a whip attachment). Stir in the green onion and celery.

Spoon the mixture into a pastry bag fitted with a plain or large star tip, then pipe the mixture evenly into the egg white halves or fill the eggs with a spoon, dividing the filling evenly.

To make the topping, stir the vinegar and sugar together in a small bowl, until dissolved. Add the shrimp, cucumber, pepper and cilantro, and toss until well coated. Top each egg half with about one heaping teaspoon of the mixture. For extra flavor and spice top each egg with a dot of Sriracha and garnish with a tiny cilantro leaf, if desired. Serve immediately.

Recipe by Kathy Casey Food Studios® – www.KathyCasey.com

Creamy White Bean Dip with Garlic and Rosemary
I like to serve this dip with crostini, grilled flat breads or fresh veggies, such as pieces of fennel, red peppers, blanched green beans or grilled vegetables. For a variation, top with diced fresh tomatoes, cucumber and your favorite olives.

Makes 3 cups

2 (15-ounce) cans white beans, drained well (I used S&W White Beans in Light Seasoning)
6 cloves fresh garlic, peeled
1/2 tsp. red chili flakes
2 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
2 tsp. finely minced lemon zest
1 1/2 tsp. finely minced fresh rosemary
3/4 tsp. kosher salt
1/2 cup olive oil
Garnish: fresh rosemary sprig

Drain beans well, then combine in a food processor with the garlic cloves. Process for about 1 minute, then scrape down sides of food processor work bowl, and add the chili flakes, lemon juice and zest, rosemary and salt. With motor running, add the olive oil through the feed tube in a slow stream. Process until smooth. Taste for salt and adjust if desired. This dip will keep refrigerated for up to 3 days.

Serve in a bowl; drizzle dip with a tiny bit of olive oil and garnish with a fresh rosemary sprig if desired.

Recipe by Kathy Casey Food Studios® – www.KathyCasey.com

Posted by Kathy on August 27th, 2015  |  Add Comment |  Posted in appetizers, KOMO Radio, Recent Posts, Recipes, sides, Snacks

Delicious and Versatile Northwest Pears

We are so lucky here in the Northwest to have SO MANY delicious varieties of sumptuous pears! Bartlett, Bosc, Seckel, Concorde … each one different and oh so delicious!

My fave pear preparation? I like to cut them into thick wedges and toss with a little olive oil, balsamic, and seasoning, then roast on a sheet pan in a HOT oven until they are tender. Great tossed in a salad, served with roast chicken or in my Roasted Pear Crostini with Gorgonzola appetizer!

Pears make for some quick and easy sauces too – try sautéing iced pears till tender, puree then mix with a little wasabi for a tasty sauce for grilled fish. Or make a quick fresh relish with diced fresh pears, shallot, a touch of honey and a splash of red wine vinegar, toss it with fresh mint and you have an amazing accompaniment to lamb!

Fresh Northwest pears are also great to include in your favorite smoothie recipe for natural added sweetness and in entrees like one of my favorite easy entertaining recipes – Spiced Baked Chicken with Pears and Port – yum! –Kathy


Photo from Kathy Casey’s Sips & Apps, Chronicle Books – Angie Norwood Browne

Roasted Pear Crostini with Gorgonzola
These are extra-delicious topped with chopped toasted nuts, such as hazelnuts or walnuts. Balsamic glaze can be purchased at gourmet and well-stocked grocery stores.

Makes 24

Pears
2 firm NW red Bartlett or other red-skinned pears
1 Tbsp. olive oil
1 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar
1/4 tsp. kosher salt
1 tsp. minced fresh thyme

24 pieces Herbed Crostini (recipe follows)
1 cup (4 ounces) crumbled gorgonzola cheese or thinly sliced Cambozola
2 Tbsp. balsamic glaze

For garnishing
Tiny sprigs of fresh thyme

Preheat an oven to 450 degrees F.

To roast the pears: Quarter the pears lengthwise, then core. Cut each quarter lengthwise into 6 slices (you should have 24 slices, total). In a medium bowl, whisk together the oil, vinegar, salt, and thyme. Add the pears and toss to coat.

Spray a rimmed baking sheet with cooking spray. Lay out the pears, not touching, on the baking sheet. Roast for 12 to 15 minutes, or until golden and starting to caramelize on the edges. Pears can be cooled, covered, and refrigerated for up to 3 days before serving.

When ready to serve, lay out the crostini on a baking sheet and top each piece with about 1 heaping teaspoon of gorgonzola or a slice of Cambozola,then a slice of pear. Bake until just warmed, about 4 minutes.

Drizzle each piece with about 1/4 teaspoon balsamic glaze, then garnish with thyme.

Herbed Crostini
Crostini are the must-have party basic. Use as a base for assorted toppers, such as creamy cheeses, tapenade, or spreads.

Makes 32 to 40 pieces

1/3 cup olive oil
1/2 tsp. dried basil leaves
1/2 tsp. dried thyme leaves
Pinch of cayenne pepper
1 tsp. minced fresh garlic
1 long, skinny French baguette, cut into 1/4-inch diagonal slices
Kosher salt for sprinkling

Preheat an oven to 400 degrees F.

In a small bowl, mix the oil, dried herbs, cayenne, and garlic. Lightly brush the baguette slices with the herb oil or, in a large bowl, drizzle the bread with the oil and toss well. Lay out the bread in a single layer on baking sheets, sprinkle with salt, and bake for about 8 to 10 minutes, until just crispy.

Crostini can be made in advance, cooled thoroughly, and stored in airtight containers for up to 3 days. If necessary, recrisp them in a hot oven for a couple of minutes.

Recipe from Kathy Casey Sips & Apps, Chronicle Books – www.LiquidKitchen.com

Spiced Chicken with Pears and Port
This is a great entrée for a dinner party. I also love it sprinkled with blue cheese right before serving for a delicious twist.

Makes 6 servings

3 firm ripe fresh NW pears
2 tsp. ground coriander
1 tsp. ground cardamom
1/2 tsp. black pepper
1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
1 Tbsp. kosher salt
3 Tbsp. olive oil
6 skin-on, bone-in chicken breast halves
2 shallots, thinly sliced
6 cloves fresh garlic, sliced
1 unpeeled lemon, sliced (about 9 slices)
1 cup port wine
1 tsp. cornstarch (optional)
1/4 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves for garnishing

Preheat an oven to 375 degrees F.

Cut pears in half and core. Cut each half in half and then in half again—to make large chunks. Reserve.

In a small bowl, mix the spices and salt. Lay the chicken on a baking sheet or piece of waxed paper or plastic wrap, and sprinkle each piece liberally on both sides with the spice mixture.

In a large nonstick skillet or sauté pan, heat the oil over medium-high heat until hot. Sauté half of the chicken for about 3 minutes on each side, or until the skin is deep golden brown and crispy. As the pieces are browned, place them, skin side up, in a 10-by-15-inch baking pan or small roasting pan. Repeat with the remaining chicken.

Pour off any excess oil, then sauté the pears, shallots, garlic, and lemon for about 1 minute. Add the port and stir to scrape up the browned bits on the bottom of the pan. Bring just to a boil, and then add the hot mixture, with all the goodies, to the roasting pan, pouring it around, not over, the chicken to keep the browned crust intact.

Roast for about 40 to 45 minutes, or until the chicken is opaque throughout and nicely browned on the outside, with an internal temperature of 160 degrees F (chicken will gain another 5 degrees on standing).

Transfer the chicken to a platter or individual plates and keep warm. Using a slotted spoon, retrieve the pears, shallots, garlic, and lemon slices from the sauce and distribute them over the chicken. Place the roasting pan on a burner on high heat and cook to reduce the sauce to about 3/4 cup. (If you like your sauce to have a bit more body, mix 1 teaspoon of cornstarch with 2 teaspoons of water until smooth and whisk into the reducing sauce. Cook till lightly thickened.) Taste the sauce for seasoning, adjust if needed, then drizzle the sauce over the chicken and goodies. Scatter with parsley leaves for garnish.

Adapted from Kathy Casey’s Northwest Table cookbook, Chronicle Books – www.KathyCasey.com

Posted by Kathy on August 20th, 2015  |  Add Comment |  Posted in appetizers, Fruit, KOMO Radio, Recent Posts, Recipes, Snacks

The Mighty Peanut

Peanuts! In addition to being the core ingredient in a classic PB&J sandwich, they pack a serious nutritional punch and are really, quite healthy – when eaten in moderation.

Peanuts are rich in monounsaturated (MONO-Un-Saturated) fat, the type emphasized in heart-healthy diet. They are also a good source of vitamin E, protein and antioxidants. When roasted, peanuts’ antioxidant content are boosted and are similar to those found in blackberries and strawberries!

Did you know that they are not actually in the nut family? They’re grain-type legumes, related to beans, lentils, and peas, and grow underground!

Speaking of growing, did you know that peanuts grow here in the northwest? That’s right! Farms like Alvarez located in Mabton and CB’s Nuts in Hansville have grown peanuts for years. You may have bought their delicious peanuts at a farmers market or in your local grocery store! Check out Agrilicious (agg-ree-LISH-us) – a great site for finding who’s growing what locally…. like peanuts.

alvarezhilariofreshpeanuts
A bounty of peanuts perfect for snacking!

Peanuts are great in sweet and savory dishes from classic peanut butter cookies to scattering on phad thai noodles. One of my favorite snacks to make is my Five-Spiced Sesame Peanuts great to much on while sipping a cocktail.

Here’s to the mighty peanut! -Kathy

Five-Spiced Sesame Peanuts
If the nuts lose their crispness after cooking, re-toast them in a 350-degree oven for a couple of minutes before serving.

Makes about 4 cups

1 egg white
1 Tbsp. water
1 pound (about 3 1/2 cups) salted, dry-roasted, skinless peanuts
1/3 cup sugar
2 Tbsp. black sesame seeds
2 Tbsp. white sesame seeds
2 tsp. five-spice powder
1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
1 tsp. kosher salt

Preheat the oven to 250 degrees.

In a medium bowl, whisk the egg white with water until foamy. Add the peanuts and toss to coat. Transfer the nuts to a strainer, shake, and let drain for at least 5 minutes.

In a large bowl, mix together the sugar, sesame seeds, five-spice, cayenne and salt. Add the drained peanuts and toss to coat thoroughly.

On a large baking sheet with sides, spread the nuts out in a single layer. Bake for 45 minutes. Stir the nuts with a spatula and spread them out again. REDUCE THE TEMPERATURE to 200 degrees and bake for 45 to 55 minutes longer, or until dry.

Loosen the nuts from the baking sheet but do not remove them from the sheet. Cool to room temperature. Be sure to let the nuts cool completely and become crisp. Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 weeks.

Recipe by Kathy Casey Food Studios® – www.KathyCasey.com

Posted by Kathy on July 29th, 2015  |  Add Comment |  Posted in appetizers, Recent Posts, Recipes, Snacks

Wisconsin State Journal

“The Devil is in the Details” – love it! Thanks to Wisconsin State Journal for featuring recipes and tips from D’Lish Deviled Eggs!

Posted by Kathy on April 1st, 2015  |  Add Comment |  Posted in appetizers, Foodie News, Press, Recent Posts, Recipes

Dungeness Crab – Picked or Piled it’s All Delicious

The Pacific Northwest loves their Dungeness crabs! Named for the Washington town on the Strait of Juan de Fuca, the Dungeness crab is found all the way from Alaska to lower California.

NWT_crab
Photo from Kathy Casey’s Northwest Table.

You’ve probably noticed that some crab eaters are pickers and some are pilers. The former pick and eat as they go. While the latter, prefer to make piles of shelled crab, not even tasting a single morsel till they have a good-sized mound. So which one are you: a picker or a piler?

Fresh, right out of the shell is still my favorite way to eat this prized catch, or in my Classic Seattle-Style Crab Louie salad with homemade dressing. And since the Northwest’s sweet Dungeness are most bountiful during the winter, it’s a good time to enjoy crab in my second favorite form, in d’lish Crab Cakes.

Crab cakes are an American tradition. From Chesapeake Bay to Puget Sound, each region has its version. Here in the northwest, we like ours snuggled up next to a sassy slaw and a dollop of aioli. No Old Bay needed here!

Renowned Seattle Chef Tom Douglas published an entire book on crab cakes, and local author Cynthia Nims wrote a whole book dedicated to crab – chock full of tips, local lore and great recipes.

So get cracking and enjoy the delectable Dungeness! –Kathy

Classic Seattle-Style Crab Louis
Makes 4 servings

4 large whole lettuce leaves
8 heaping cups sliced iceberg or romaine lettuce
1 pound Dungeness crab body and leg meat
4 hard-boiled eggs, halved lengthwise
12 grape tomatoes
12 cooked asparagus spears and/or raw cucumber slices
12 black ripe olives
4 lemon wedges
4 flat-leaf parsley sprigs
Louis Dressing (recipe follows)

Lay 1 whole lettuce leaf on each chilled individual plate. Divide the cut lettuce among the leaves and top with the crabmeat. Divide the eggs, tomatoes, asparagus, and olives attractively among the salads.

Garnish with lemon wedges and parsley sprigs. Serve about 1/3 cup of dressing in a large ramekin with each salad and pass extra dressing.

Louis Dressing
Makes 2 3/4 cups

2 hard-boiled eggs, very finely chopped
1/3 cup chopped black ripe olives
3 Tbsps. fresh lemon juice
1 1/2 cups mayonnaise
1/2 cup tomato-based chili sauce
1/4 tsp. black pepper
1/2 tsp. Tabasco sauce or to taste
1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
1/3 cup sweet pickle relish
1 Tbsp. minced white onion

In a medium bowl, mix all the ingredients well. The dressing keeps, refrigerated, for up to 1 week.

Recipe from Kathy Casey’s Northwest Table.

Crab Cakes with Tangy Vegetable Slaw and Sherry Aioli
Prepare slaw and aioli before cooking crab cakes.

Makes 4 servings

Crab Cakes
1 pound high quality Dungeness crab meat
1/3 cup mayonnaise
1 small egg, lightly beaten
1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
1/4 tsp. Tabasco
1/4 tsp. dry mustard
3 Tbsps. finely diced celery
3 Tbsps. finely minced green onion
1 1/2 tsp. finely minced fresh garlic
1/4 cup bread crumbs
1 1/2 tsp. fresh lemon juice
1/2 tsp. sherry vinegar
1/2 tsp. kosher salt
1/8 tsp. black pepper
2 Tbsps. finely minced carrot
2 tsp. chopped parsley
Egg wash (2 eggs beaten with 2 tsp. water)
Bread crumbs (approximately 1 1/2 cups), preferably Panko, available at Oriental grocers
1/4 cup peanut or vegetable oil for frying, more or less as needed
2 lemons, cut in wedges
Tangy Vegetable Slaw (recipe follows)
Sherry Aioli (recipe follows)

In a large bowl mix all crab cake ingredients together well. Divide crab mixture into 12 portions and form into 1/2-inch-thick patties.

Place egg wash and bread crumbs in separate small bowls. Dip patties first in egg wash then in bread crumbs.

In a heavy 10- to 12-inch skillet heat oil over medium high heat till hot but not smoking (350-375 degrees). Fry crab cakes in small batches till golden brown on each side, turning as needed. Drain on paper towels.

Serve immediately with Tangy Vegetable Slaw and dollops of Sherry Aioli. Serve extra slaw, aioli and lemon wedges on the side.

Tangy Vegetable Slaw
Dressing and vegetables can be prepared separately and refrigerated up to two days in advance. Toss together right before serving.

3 Tbsps. mayonnaise
2 Tbsps. sour cream
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup rice wine vinegar
2 Tbsps. sherry vinegar
1 Tbsp. finely minced red onion
1 1/4 tsp. kosher salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
1 Tbsp. chopped parsley
1 1/2 cups finely shredded green cabbage
1/2 cup finely shredded red cabbage
1 cup finely matchstick-cut carrots
1 cup finely matchstick-cut English cucumber, with skin
1 small bunch fresh chives, cut in 1-inch lengths

In a large bowl blend together mayonnaise, sour cream and sugar. Whisk in vinegars, onion, salt, pepper and parsley.

Just before serving, add remaining ingredients and toss well.

Sherry Aioli
3/4 cup high quality mayonnaise
1 Tbsp. finely minced fresh garlic
1 1/2 tsp. sherry vinegar
1 1/2 Tbsps. fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/8 tsp. Tabasco
1/2 tsp. kosher salt

In a medium mixing bowl or food processor place mayonnaise, garlic, vinegar and lemon juice. While whisking vigorously or with processor running, slowly drizzle in olive oil until all oil is incorporated and aioli is a smooth consistency.

Season with Tabasco and salt. Mix in well. Store refrigerated till needed.

Recipe by Kathy Casey Food Studios® – www.KathyCasey.com

Posted by Kathy on February 26th, 2015  |  Add Comment |  Posted in appetizers, KOMO Radio, Recent Posts, Recipes, salads, seafood

Super Bowl Sips & Apps – Go Hawks!

It’s Super Bowl Weekend – woo hoo! Go Hawks! And I’ve got some great sips & apps for Beast Mode-style partying!

Did you see the New York Daily News game day chef seafood smack down between Seattle and New England? Well I represented us well! We don’t need Old Bay on our local seafood – yes I called that out!

NY Daily News
GO HAWKS!

Start off with oh-so-Seattle Seahawks Superfan Salmon Sliders. Alaska sockeye salmon burgers on Macrina Bakery’s little slider buns slathered with lemon rosemary aioli and topped with pickled onions and arugula. Score this one for flavor points!

Sliders

And it’s not a party without some deviled eggs – you know how much I love these! The 12th Egg features crispy bacon, local Beecher’s Cheese flagship cheddar, and Dungeness crab meat. Make sure to make plenty – they’ll be flying off the plate in no time.

Deviled Eggs

Looking for something to quench your thirst while cheering (and maybe screaming) for the Hawks? Make my “Legion Of Boom” cocktail. Inspired by our heavy hitting defense, this crowd pleasing cocktail uses fresh mint, silver rum, and fresh grapefruit juice. It’s then topped off with an IPA for another great flavor hit. BOOM!

Boom

Celebrate in true 12th Man style with these recipes and GO HAWKS! –Kathy

The 12th Egg – Bacon Cheddar Crab Deviled Eggs
Eggs, bacon, cheese … they go hand in hand. Top with Northwest Dungeness Crab to celebrate the game day 12th Man Style!

Makes 24

1 dozen hard-cooked eggs (recipe follows)

Filling
3 Tbsp. mayonnaise
3 Tbsp. sour cream
1/2 tsp. Dijon mustard (optional)
1 tsp. minced fresh garlic
1/4 tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
1/3 cup finely grated sharp cheddar cheese, such as Seattle Beecher’s Cheese – Flagship Cheddar

Topping
1/4 cup finely chopped crisp-cooked bacon
2 Tbsp. very thinly sliced green onion
4 oz wt. Dungeness crab meat (or substitute Alaska King crab)
Freshly ground black pepper

Halve the eggs lengthwise and transfer the yolks to a mixing bowl. Set the egg white halves on a platter, cover, and refrigerate.

With a fork, mash the yolks to a smooth consistency. Add the mayonnaise, sour cream, mustard, if using, garlic, salt, and pepper, and mix until smooth. (You can also do this in a mixing bowl with a whip attachment.) Stir in the cheddar until evenly mixed in.

Spoon the mixture into a pastry bag fitted with a large plain tip, then pipe the mixture evenly into the egg white halves. Or fill the eggs with a spoon, dividing the filling evenly.

To make the topping, in a small bowl, mix the bacon, green onion and crab. Divide topping among the eggs.

Hard-Cooked Eggs
1 dozen large chicken eggs

Place the eggs in a large nonreactive saucepan and add cold water to 1 inch above the eggs. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Turn off the heat and let the eggs sit for 10 minutes. Remove from the stove and run cool water over the eggs in the pan until they are cooled. When cool, carefully peel them under running water.

Recipe adapted from D’Lish Deviled Eggs by Kathy Casey

“Legion Of Boom”
Bring the boom with the perfect play between grapefruit and IPA in this game day cocktail.

Makes 1 cocktail

2 mint sprigs
1 oz Bacardi silver rum
2 oz fresh squeezed Sunkist® grapefruit juice
1 oz simple syrup*
————————————
3 oz Pike Brewery IPA
Garnish: grapefruit slice and mint spring

Measure the Sunkist® grapefruit juice, simple syrup and rum into a cocktail shaker. Tear the mint sprigs and drop in. Fill with ice, cap and shake. Pour cocktail into a tall glass. Add IPA and stir. Garnish with grapefruit and mint.

*To make Simple Syrup: combine 1 cup boiling water with 1 cup sugar. Stir until sugar is completely dissolved. Cool and store refrigerated for up to 2 weeks.

Recipe by Kathy Casey Liquid Kitchen® – www.LiquidKitchen.com

Posted by Kathy on January 30th, 2015  |  Add Comment |  Posted in appetizers, events, Foodie News, KOMO Radio, Lifestyle, Recent Posts, Recipes, Snacks

Autumn Pears

We are so lucky here in the Pacific Northwest to have such a delicious variety of sumptuous pears! Bartlett, Bosc, Seckel, Concorde – each one different, yet they’re all oh-so-delicious!

The months of October through December are the prime time for pears.

One of my favorite preparations for pears is roasting them: just cut them into thick wedges and toss with a little olive oil, balsamic, and seasoning. Roast them on a sheet pan in a hot oven until they are just tender.

They’re great tossed in a fall salad, served with roast chicken or on a crostini with some gorgonzola for an easy appetizer like in my Roasted Pear Crostini with Gorgonzola! Or maybe even serve them with your Thanksgiving roast turkey as a tasty accompaniment!

Another idea is to make a pear wasabi puree: sauté diced pears till tender, then puree them mixed with a little wasabi for a tasty sauce for grilled fish of scallops.

And don’t forget about the drinks! Try infusing a bottle of vodka with a sliced pear. Let sit for 2 – 3 days then strain! Delicious in cocktails like my Pear Thyme Fizz or put it in bottles and give it as a great fall hostess gift! –Kathy

Roasted Pear Crostini (2)
Photo from Kathy Casey’s Sips & Apps, Chronicle Books – Angie Norwood Browne

Roasted Pear Crostini with Gorgonzola
These are extra-delicious topped with chopped toasted nuts, such as hazelnuts or walnuts. Balsamic glaze can be purchased at gourmet and well-stocked grocery stores.

Makes 24

Pears
2 firm red Bartlett or other red-skinned pears
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon minced fresh thyme

24 pieces Herbed Crostini (recipe follows)
1 cup (4 ounces) crumbled gorgonzola cheese or thinly sliced Cambozola
2 tablespoons balsamic glaze

For garnishing
Tiny sprigs of fresh thyme

Preheat an oven to 450 degrees F.

To roast the pears: Quarter the pears lengthwise, then core. Cut each quarter lengthwise into 6 slices (you should have 24 slices, total). In a medium bowl, whisk together the oil, vinegar, salt, and thyme. Add the pears and toss to coat.

Spray a rimmed baking sheet with cooking spray. Lay out the pears, not touching, on the baking sheet. Roast for 12 to 15 minutes, or until golden and starting to caramelize on the edges. Pears can be cooled, covered, and refrigerated for up to 3 days before serving.

When ready to serve, lay out the crostini on a baking sheet and top each piece with about 1 heaping teaspoon of gorgonzola or a slice of Cambozola, then a slice of pear. Bake until just warmed, about 4 minutes.

Drizzle each piece with about 1/4 teaspoon balsamic glaze, then garnish with thyme.

Herbed Crostini
Crostini are the must-have party basic. Use as a base for assorted toppers, such as creamy cheeses, tapenade, or spreads.

Makes 32 to 40 pieces

1/3 cup olive oil
1/2 teaspoon dried basil leaves
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
Pinch of cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon minced fresh garlic
1 long, skinny French baguette, cut into 1/4-inch diagonal slices
Kosher salt for sprinkling

Preheat an oven to 400 degrees F.

In a small bowl, mix the oil, dried herbs, cayenne, and garlic. Lightly brush the baguette slices with the herb oil or, in a large bowl, drizzle the bread with the oil and toss well. Lay out the bread in a single layer on baking sheets, sprinkle with salt, and bake for about 8 to 10 minutes, until just crispy.

Crostini can be made in advance, cooled thoroughly, and stored in airtight containers for up to 3 days. If necessary, recrisp them in a hot oven for a couple of minutes.

Recipe from Kathy Casey Sips & Apps, Chronicle Books – www.liquidkitchen.com

Pear Thyme Fizz
Fresh thyme’s savoriness is wonderful against the crisp dryness of pear.

Makes 1 drink

1 large sprig fresh thyme
1 1/2 oz Pear Infused Vodka (recipe follows)
1/2 ounce fresh lemon juice
3/4 ounce Simple Syrup (recipe follows)
Splash of chilled brut Champagne, dry sparkling wine, or soda water

For garnishing
Thin slice of fresh pear
Small sprig of fresh thyme

Bend the large thyme sprig and drop into a cocktail shaker. Fill the shaker with ice. Measure in the vodka, lemon juice, and simple syrup. Cap and shake vigorously. Strain into a martini glass. Top with a splash of Champagne. Float a pear slice and thyme sprig in the drink for garnish.

Pear Infused Vodka
Makes 1 1/2 cups

1 large ripe pear
1 1/2 cups vodka

Core pear and cut into thin slices (leave skin on) and place in a mason jar with vodka. Cap and shake. Leave to infuse for at least 2 days (up to 5 days) and then strain. (Discard pears.) Refrigerate until ready to use.

Simple Syrup
This is a bar staple and the most commonly used sweetener. Though you can purchase simple syrup, it is ordinarily sweeter than I prefer, so I highly recommend making your own. Proportions vary but it is easy.

Makes 3 cups

2 cups water
2 cups sugar

Mix the water and sugar together in a small saucepan and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Let boil 1 minute then immediately remove from the heat. Let cool to room temperature before using. Store in a clean glass bottle or container, at room temperature, for up to 2 weeks or, refrigerated, for up to 3 months.

Recipe from Kathy Casey Sips & Apps, Chronicle Books – www.liquidkitchen.com

Posted by Kathy Casey on November 26th, 2014  |  Comments Off on Autumn Pears |  Posted in appetizers, Books to Cook, Cocktails, Fruit, KOMO Radio, Recent Posts, Recipes

Seahawks Super Snacks – Sips and Apps!

Fall means football season and no one loves their football more than all the 12s of Seahawk Nation. And we all know that Skittles are a fave treat among all the Seahawk die-hards, especially when Beast Mode plows into the end-zone – TOUCHDOWN!

Personally, I am a BIG Skittles lover so let’s get creative. Start first with a toast with my Skittles-infused boozy shots. Yes, I have a recipe for this – don’t judge!

Skittles Shot
Who’s ready for a shot at the end zone? Vodka – Skittles – Jäger…

Now let’s talk game day recipes with some Pacific Northwest flair! Start with some tasty appetizers like my Warm Alaskan Crab, Mushroom & Brie Dip, perfect served up on easy to make thyme crostini. Next on the line up are Mini Scallion Biscuits with Smoked Salmon Spread and Bacon Tillamook Cheddar Deviled Eggs to nibble on between downs.

Crab Dip
Who’s ready for my Warm Alaskan Crab, Mushroom & Brie Dip?
Photo by Kathy Casey Food Studios®.

Bacon Cheddar Deviled Eggs
My Bacon Tillamook Cheddar Deviled Eggs!
Photo from D’Lish Deviled Eggs.

For something heartier, look no farther than a bowl of my Stadium Apple Chili made with Washington apples and some local beer of course!

Make your next game day d’ish and don’t forget to let me know some of your favorite game day bites. Go hawks! –Kathy

Skittles Shots
This recipe easily doubles. ….. don’t judge, just laugh!

Makes 8 shots

1 package (2.17 oz) original Skittles
1 cup vodka
1/2 cup Jägermeister

In a mason jar, add the Skittles then measure in vodka and Jägermeister. Stir vigorously then cover. Let sit for at least 1 hour or overnight depending on how much you love Skittles.

When ready to serve, pour 2 ounces into a shaker tin, add ice and shake. Strain into 2 shot glasss and add a Skittle for garnish.

Created by Kathy Casey Food Liquid Kitchen®.

Warm Crab, Mushroom & Brie Dip with Fresh Thyme & Sea Salt Crostini
Dungeness crab meat is tasty but also pricy. Try purchasing Alaska King Crab legs and picking the meat out. It’s easy to do by using a pair of clean scissors to open up the legs. Then just give the meat a very coarse chop to cut it into 1/2 inch pieces.

Dip can be prepared up to 2 days in advance if using very fresh crab and baked when your guests are just starting to arrive. Easy to make Fresh Thyme & Sea Salt Crostini bake at the same oven temperature to make things easy!

Makes about 6 cups — serves about 12 – 24 people

1 small (8 oz wt.) wheel brie cheese
——————————————
2 tsp. olive oil
1 cup thinly sliced onion
2 cups thinly sliced crimini mushrooms
2 tsp. minced fresh garlic
1/2 cup dry sherry
——————————————-
1 1/2 cups mayonnaise (Note: do not use reduced-fat or fat-free, I like to use Best Foods in this recipe)
3 cups (about 10 oz. wt.) shredded, high-quality parmesan cheese
1/2 tsp. Tabasco
1 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup thinly sliced green onion
1/4 cup minced sweet red bell pepper (optional)
1/2 cup minced celery
3/4 lb crab meat, drained well (about 2 1/2 cups drained), see note above
Garnish: Minced fresh parsley

Fresh Thyme & Sea Salt Crostini, (recipe follows)

Cut the brie cheese into 1/2” pieces, set aside and then let come to room temperature.

Meanwhile, heat the oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onions and cook stirring often till half cooked, about 4 minutes. Add the mushrooms and continue cooking until the onions are very soft and the mushrooms are tender, about 4 minutes. Then add the garlic and sherry and continue cooking until the sherry is completely reduced about 8 minutes. (There should not be any liquid left.) Set aside to cool.

Place the room temperature brie in a mixer with a paddle attachment. Mix on medium-high speed for about 1 minute or until the cheese softened. Scrape down the sides of the bowl then add half of the mayonnaise. Mix for 3 more minutes on medium-high speed. Add the remaining mayonnaise, parmesan, Tabasco and lemon juice. Mix together on medium speed until well mixed, about 1 minute.

Remove bowl from mixer and fold-in the cooled mushroom mixture, green onion, pepper, celery and crab meat – being careful not to break up the crab meat. Do not over mix.

Place dip in a 7-inch x 11-inch baking dish, or 2 quart or ovenproof serving dish. Smooth out but do not compact it. (Dip can be covered and refrigerated up to 1 day at this point.)

When ready to serve dip, place in a 400-degree F. pre-heated oven. Bake for about 15 – 20 minutes or until dip just starts to bubble around the edges, is heated through and the cheese is melted. (Be careful not to overcook) If desired, sprinkle with minced fresh parsley. Serve immediately with Fresh Thyme & Sea Salt Crostini, or rustic flat bread or crackers.

Fresh Thyme & Sea Salt Crostini
Crostini are the must-have party basic. Use as a base for assorted toppers, such as creamy cheeses, tapenade, or spreads.

Makes 24 – 32 pieces

1 baguette
3 Tbsps. olive oil
2 tsp. minced fresh thyme
1 tsp. minced fresh garlic
1/2 tsp. sea salt

Pre-heat an oven to 400 degrees F.

Cut the baguette with a serrated knife into 1/4-inch diagonal slices. Lay out on a baking sheet pan.

In a small bowl, mix together the oil, thyme and garlic. Lightly brush the baguette slices with the herb oil, then sprinkle with salt. Bake for about 10 – 15 minutes, or until just crispy.

Recipe by Kathy Casey Food Studios® – www.KathyCasey.com

Mini Scallion Biscuits with Smoked Salmon Spread & Pickled Onions
The trick to these tiny fluffy biscuits is not to overhandle the dough: the more you touch it the less fluff you will get. The salmon spread and onions can be made up to two days in advance.

Makes 24 to 28

Pickled Onions
3/4 cup thinly sliced 1 1/2-inch-long pieces red onion
1/4 cup seasoned rice vinegar

Smoked Salmon Spread
1/2 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, at room temperature
3 oz thinly sliced cold-smoked salmon
1/2 tsp. prepared horseradish
2 tsp. fresh lemon juice
1/2 tsp. finely minced fresh dill

Biscuits
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp. baking powder
3/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. dry mustard
1/4 tsp.freshly ground black pepper
6 Tbsps. cold salted butter, cut into chunks
2 large green onions, white and green parts, minced (about 1/3 cup)
1 Tbsp. minced fresh parsley
3/4 cup milk, plus more as needed

Garnish: 24 to 28 small fresh dill sprigs

Preheat an oven to 425 degrees F.

In a small bowl, toss the onion and vinegar together. Cover and set aside to marinate for at least 30 minutes. Keep refrigerated until ready to use. Drain the onions before using.

To make the salmon spread: In a food processor, combine the cream cheese and half of the salmon and process until smooth. Add the horseradish and lemon juice, and process, scraping down the sides as necessary, until smooth. Add the dill and process until incorporated.

Transfer the spread to a small bowl. Finely chop the remaining salmon and stir it into the spread until evenly distributed. The salmon spread can be made up to 2 days in advance, and refrigerated, covered. Bring to room temperature before serving.

To make the biscuits: In a large bowl, mix the flour, baking powder, salt, dry mustard, and pepper. With a pastry blender or two knives, cut in the butter, or rub it in with your fingers, until the size of small peas. Stir in the green onions and parsley. With a fork, lightly stir in enough milk to make a soft dough. (Start with 3/4 cup milk, then add more only as needed, 1 tablespoon at a time.) Take care not to overmix the dough.

Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Lightly pat out to 3/4-inch thickness, handling the dough as little as possible. Sprinkle the dough lightly with flour. Cut into 24 to 28 rounds with a 1 1/2-inch biscuit cutter. (Do not twist the cutter when cutting the dough.) Place the biscuits, with sides touching, on an ungreased baking sheet.

Bake for about 14 to 16 minutes, until golden. Remove from the oven and let cool on the pan for about 10 minutes.

To assemble: Split the biscuits in half horizontally. Spread the biscuit bottoms with about 1 rounded teaspoonful of the salmon spread, and top the spread with a little of the drained pickled onion and a dill sprig. Arrange the biscuits on a serving platter, replace the top halves of the biscuits, slightly askew, and serve immediately.

Recipe from Kathy Casey Sips & Apps, Chronicle Books.

Bacon Cheddar Deviled Eggs
Eggs, bacon, cheese … they go hand in hand. I like to use local Northwest Tillamook cheddar for some local flair.

Makes 24

1 dozen hard-cooked eggs

Filling
3 Tbsps. mayonnaise
3 Tbsps. sour cream
1/2 tsp. Dijon mustard (optional)
1 tsp. minced fresh garlic
1/4 tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
1/3 cup finely grated sharp cheddar cheese, such as Tillamook

Topping
1/4 cup finely chopped crisp-cooked bacon
2 Tbsps. very thinly sliced green onion
Freshly ground black pepper

Halve the eggs lengthwise and transfer the yolks to a mixing bowl. Set the egg white halves on a platter, cover, and refrigerate.

With a fork, mash the yolks to a smooth consistency. Add the mayonnaise, sour cream, mustard, if using, garlic, salt, and pepper, and mix until smooth. (You can also do this in a mixing bowl with a whip attachment.) Stir in the cheddar until evenly mixed in.

Spoon the mixture into a pastry bag fitted with a large plain tip, then pipe the mixture evenly into the egg white halves. Or fill the eggs with a spoon, dividing the filling evenly.

To make the topping, in a small bowl, mix the bacon and green onion. Top each egg half with about 3/4 teaspoon of the mixture, and then sprinkle with black pepper.

Recipe from D’Lish Deviled Eggs by Kathy Casey, Andrews McMeel Publishing.

Stadium Apple Chili
Fuji apples are incredible. Not only do they have a wonderfully clean, sweet flavor, but their cooked texture is amazingly firm. A great shape-holder! You’ll be a true Fuji fan when you try this recipe!

Vegetarian Friendly Version: Substitute 1 pound peeled, 1″ cubed winter squash (such as Hubbard or pumpkin) for meats and an apple juice and vegetable broth mixture for beef broth.

Makes 7 cups

2 Fuji apples or other firm cooking apple
1 Tbsp. vegetable oil
8 oz wt. coarse ground beef (chili grind)
4 oz wt. hot pork sausage
12 oz wt. boneless pork butt, cut in 3/4″ – 1″ cubes
1 cup diced onion
1/2 cup diced green pepper
1 Tbsp. minced fresh garlic
1/4 cup chili powder
1 Tbsp. dry whole oregano
1 1/2 tsp. ground cumin
1/8 – 1/4 tsp. red chili flakes, (optional)
1 cup beef broth
1 cup beer
1 can (14 1/2 oz) diced tomatoes in puree
2 cans (15 oz ea.) pinto beans, drained
1 cans (15 oz) kidney beans, drained
1/2 – 1 tsp. salt, more or less to taste

Chili Toppers
grated apple
grated cheddar cheese
sour cream
thinly sliced green onion

Peel, core and dice the apples into 1/2″ cubes. Set aside.

Meanwhile, heat oil in a large Dutch oven over medium-high to high heat. Add the meats, stir occasionally and cook till meats are browned and no juice remains.

Add onions, peppers, garlic, chili powder and spices. Stir in well, and cook stirring constantly for 1-2 minutes, being careful not to scorch chili powder.

Add beef broth, beer and tomatoes. Combine well and bring to a simmer. Reduce heat and simmer uncovered for about 15 minutes.

Add apples and beans and return to a simmer, cover and cook for about 20 minutes or until meat and apples are tender. Season with salt to taste. (Note: If chili gets too thick, add water as needed during cooking.)

Serve with Chili Toppers of your choice.

Recipe by Kathy Casey Food Studios®www.KathyCasey.com

Posted by Kathy Casey on November 7th, 2014  |  Comments Off on Seahawks Super Snacks – Sips and Apps! |  Posted in appetizers, Cocktails, Foodie News, KOMO Radio, Lifestyle, Recent Posts, Recipes
Untitled