Wednesday, December 30, 2015

The Weekend Gourmet's Ten Most Popular Posts of 2015 #YearInReview #PopularRecipes

It's nearly time to say goodbye to 2015, so it's the perfect time to take one last look back at The Weekend Gourmet's most popular recipes of the past year. These are the ten recipes that my readers enjoyed the most, and I have to admit that they're among my personal favorites too! There's everything from soup to appetizers...and quick weeknight dinners and breakfast tacos too. Let's take a quick look at each one, from 10 to 1!

(10) Zesty Tex-Mex Shrimp Cocktail. This delicious, easy-to-make shrimp cocktail appetizer is perfect for pool parties...and gameday feasts too. It features plump boiled shrimp, chunks of creamy avocado, and spicy pico de gallo. This popular recipe is a real winner! Pair with sturdy tortilla chips on the side for dipping, and get ready for rave reviews.
(9) Crescent Jalapeno Poppers. With just five simple ingredients, these fun appetizers are a snap to make! If you love spicy jalapeno poppers, then you'll go crazy for this version that's wrapped in refrigerated crescent rolls. The addition of bacon takes these spicy bites over the top!
(8) Grilled Shrimp Burger with Quick Remoulade Sauce. If you're looking for a fun alternative to traditional burgers, then you definitely want to try these grilled shrimp burgers. They're grilled, then topped with a quick spicy remoulade sauce. These shrimp burgers are downright addictive!
(7) New Orleans Red Beans and Rice Soup. This flavorful soup is the perfect one-pot meal for chilly nights! It combines the earthy flavor of red beans and rice with smoky sausage and white rice -- in a hearty soup. An added bonus: leftovers taste even better the next day!
(6) Shrimp Rangoon Egg Rolls with Honey-Soy Dipping Sauce. This fun finger food is a mashup of shrimp rangoon wontons and egg rolls. Egg roll wrappers are filled with a creamy shrimp mixture and fried. The flavorful dipping sauce is a little sweet, a little savory...and a little bit spicy. These are a must make the next time you get a craving for Asian food!
That's the first half of my Top 10 recipes for 2015. Which recipes made the cut for the Top 5? Click to go to the next page and see!!

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Relaxing Holiday Weekend Breakfast...Featuring Chorizo Scrambled Egg Breakfast Tacos

The holidays are in full swing, so it's important to have a few easy-to-make recipes in your back pocket. Whether it's just your immediate family the week -- or a house full of Christmas guests -- I've got the perfect breakfast recipe to share. IMUSA's Chorizo Scrambled Egg Breakfast Tacos cook in one skillet, then the flavorful filling is folded into warm tortillas. Your guests can then serve themselves customized breakfast tacos. This recipe reflects everyone's tastes, and it saves you time and stress. That, my friends, is a holiday win-win scenario!! 

Chorizo Scrambled Egg Breakfast Tacos
Recipe by IMUSA
  • 6 eggs
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 chorizo links (about 7 ounces)
  • 1 medium onion
  • 1 cup cilantro, divided
  • 1 medium tomato
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup sharp cheddar
  • 10-12 corn flour tortillas
  • Chipotle Tabasco (suggestion for topping)
  1. Mix sour cream, lime juice, and salt in a bowl and put aside.
  2. Char tortillas over gas flame or directly on electric burner until blackened in spots, turning with tongs. Place in IMUSA tortilla warmer or aluminum foil and set aside.
  3. In an IMUSA non-stick sauté pan add olive oil and bring to medium-high heat. Sweat onions for about one minute and add diced chorizo
  4. Cook for 5-6 minutes until chorizo is browned.         
  5. Add half of the cilantro and all of the cooked chorizo to beaten eggs and mix. Bring eggs back to the IMUSA pan and cook on low heat, mixing from time to time.
  6. Place cooked eggs, cheddar cheese, diced tomatoes, and remaining cilantro in separate bowls and lay them out throughout the table with the warm tortillas.
  7. Allow your guests to assemble their own breakfast tacos!
What could be easier...or more flavorful? I hope you'll give these fun breakfast tacos a try this holiday weekend. You, your family, and any guests are sure to love them!

Sunday, December 20, 2015

Last Minute Holiday Recipes #SundaySupper...Featuring Lobster Salad in Puff Pastry Cups #NoStressEntertaining #EasyElegance

I'll admit that I'm in complete denial that Christmas is less than a week away. My holiday to-do list is still a mile long, so it's going to be a mad dash to get everything finished by Thursday. However, one thing that I don't have to stress about is finding a collection of quick and easy last-minute holiday recipes to choose from! At this point, I'm looking for easy recipes that taste great and don't take hours to make. This week's Last Minute Holiday Recipes #SundaySupper event is being co-hosted by Wendy Hammond of Wholistic Woman and T.R. Crumbley of Gluten Free Crumbley. They asked us to share recipes that feature maximum impact and minimal time. My Lobster Salad Puff Pastry Bites definitely fit the bill!

Flaky, bite-sized puff pastry cups are filled with a flavorful lobster salad. The list of ingredients is minimal so the sweet chunks of lobster truly takescenter stage. Your guests will never  know that you can have these elegant appetizers ready in no time. I made the puff pastry cups early in the morning, and I made the lobster salad the day before and stored in the fridge until I was ready to assemble. Talk about a stress-free appetizer!

Friday, December 18, 2015

My Customized Holiday Movie Night...Featuring Chocolate Drizzled Cookie Butter Caramel Corn #HolidayMovieNight #UnplugAndConnect #Caspart

Christmas is ONE WEEK AWAY! Let the reality of that fact sink in just a bit. The week leading up to the big day is likely filled with shopping for presents, wrapping those presents…and maybe even a party or two. However, I want to encourage you to take one evening to put aside the hustle and bustle of the season and enjoy a relaxing Holiday Movie Night with the ones you love! All you need is a couple of hours and a few essentials. Put on some cozy PJs, pop in a fun holiday movie, and spend some time relaxing together! So...what are your Holiday Movie Night Essentials? Check out my personalized movie night checklist from my friends at Casper. The unique design of their mattresses can help make your movie night spot the perfect level of comfiness!
My Holiday Movie Night essentials include our comfy bed, festive holiday PJs, and lots of pillows are certainly required…but else how would I customize the list to make it a perfect Holiday Movie Night for us? I need my husband Michael, either Elf or Scrooged in the Blu Ray player…and our two cats. Although Maggie is the only one who loves to snuggle up with me in bed. Lucy would most likely hang out nearby on the floor. Being The Weekend Gourmet, I also must have a fun snack for us to enjoy during the movie. 

Popcorn is the perfect accompaniment to a movie, but regular old popcorn simply won’t do! I whipped up a huge batch of Chocolate Drizzled Cookie Butter Caramel Corn! It’s easy to make and delicious – it can even be made ahead and stored in an airtight container for enjoying during your Holiday Movie Night! If you love cookie butter, you’re going to flip for this treat, which features a sweet cookie butter-infused caramel coating. With this popcorn, a festive movie…and the ones you love…you have the makings of the perfect timeout in the middle of the hectic holiday season!

Thursday, December 17, 2015

Bring the Fun with Mr Kipling Pies #TryThePie! #CollectiveBias #ad

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #TryThePie #CollectiveBias
Can you believe Christmas is coming up next week? The holidays season is such a hectic time! Maximizing my time and streamlining meal prep is a huge priority for me these days! However, I refuse to sacrifice taste or quality in the process. That’s why I’m so excited to share Mr Kipling Pies with you today! These premium pies are a unique baked product that offer homemade taste and quality – and they’ll save you tons of precious time in the kitchen. These pre-baked mini pies come in four delicious flavors: Apple, Cherry, Fruit (apple and black currant), and Mississippi Mud. Mr Kipling pies taste great, and they’re made with real fruit pieces. These little pies are delicious, and they are now available at select Texas Walmart locations – but only for a limited time! They’re super easy to locate in the eye-catching Mr Kipling branded pallet.
I recently tried Mr Kipling Pies and shared with my friends and family, too. These tasty mini pies come conveniently packaged six per box, and they’re a snap to warm up perfectly in the microwave in seconds after removing them from their individual foil containers. The fudgy Mississippi Mud pies are even ready to enjoy straight from the box. Michael is partial to the Apple pie, with its sprinkling of coarse sugar on top, tender crust, and distinct pieces of apple in the filling. I also brought a trio of pies to work to share with my co-workers -- Apple, Mississippi Mud, and Cherry -- during our morning break. While everyone enjoyed all three pie flavors, the Mississippi Mud Pie was an especially big hit. The tender crust is filled with a rich chocolate filling and topped with sprinkles. The ladies especially appreciated the smaller portion size.
Mr Kipling Pies would be a perfect addition to your holiday dessert table or holiday party! They have a fresh, homemade taste your friends and family will love -- and the portion size is perfect after a heavy meal. You can also add a bowl of sweetened whipped cream or vanilla ice cream on the side to pair with the pies. If you want to try Mr Kipling Pies yourself, you have to act fast: they’re only available at select Texas Walmart locations for a short period of time! The product has a 3-week shelf life, but it can be frozen to extend its life and preserve the freshness. Trust me…you want to try these Mr Kipling Pies while you can get them. When they’re gone, they’re gone!

Sunday, December 13, 2015

December Mode Foodie Program: Dip Dip...Hooray!

Check out Dip Dip...Hooray!
by Wendy Wofford-Garcia at Mode

The holidays are officially in full swing! That means you're most likely hosting -- or attending -- a party or two over the next couple of weeks. Whether you're hosting friends or family or are an invited guest asked to bring a dish to share, a creative dip is an ideal choice! Dips are the perfect party food! They facilitate interacting with other guests, and they're so versatile. For this month's Mode Foodie Contributor Program, I'm sharing seven fabulous dips that are sure to be a hit at any holiday celebration!

For this roundup, I'm featuring creative and tasty dips that are definitely not the same old favorites you typically find at parties. Whether you're looking for a cold dip, a cheesy warm dip...or even a sweet dessert dip...I've got you covered! Some of these dips can be assembled in minutes from basic kitchen ingredients, while others are imaginative riffs on familiar sandwiches or appetizers. What all of these dips all have in common is that they're full of the big flavors that I love. To get the recipes, simply click on the slideshow above.

Disclosure: This article was compensated by Mode Media. All opinions expressed are solely my own.

Friday, December 11, 2015

Glade® Limited Edition Winter Collection...Featuring Peppermint Bark Magic Cookie Bars #HolidayWithGlade #ad

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser.  All opinions are mine alone. #HolidayWithGlade #CollectiveBias
The holidays are in full swing – and the sights, tastes...and smells...of the season are simply magical! All it takes is one whiff of pine or peppermint, and it officially feels like the holidays to me. Scent truly helps set the mood, so I surround myself with fragrances from the Glade® Limited Edition Winter Collection! Glade® believes that scent is a catalyst to feeling the way you want to feel. You don't just smell Glade® -- you feel it! Every fragrance in the Glade® Limited Edition Winter Collection evokes special holiday moments with friends and family. I found the entire Glade® Limited Edition Winter Collection on a special display located in the aisle of my local H-E-B. 
My neighborhood H-E-B carries four scents from the the Glade® Limited Edition Winter Collection: BE AT PEACE™ (scents of Balsam Fir and Juniper), CHERISH THE PRESENT™ (scents of Apple Cinnamon), SEND A LITTLE LOVE™ (scents of Vanilla Biscotti™), and SHARE THE SPIRIT™ (scents of Pomegranate Sparkler™) . These four scents smell fantastic, but BE AT PEACE™ and CHERISH THE PRESENT™ really put me in a festive holiday mood. I have an artificial tree, and I miss the smell of a fresh pine tree. When I smelled BE AT PEACE™, the scent of Balsam Fir & Juniper immediately reminded me of a Christmas tree! I selected a 2-in-1 candle that combines BE AT PEACE™ & CHERISH THE PRESENT™ scents in one candle. The two scents combine really nicely -- and they inspired me to get in the kitchen and create a fun holiday treat! 

Peppermint is my favorite holiday flavor, so I created Peppermint Bark Magic Cookie Bars to bring my favorite flavors and scents together. These Peppermint Bark Magic Cookie Bars are my holiday spin on the classic cookie bar. These yummy bars feature a base of peppermint-flavored chocolate sandwich cookies, sweetened condensed milk, white and semisweet chocolate, marshmallows, and crushed peppermint. If you love peppermint bark, you’ll go nuts for these easy-to-make bar cookies!

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

The Ideal Holiday Dessert with truwhip...Featuring Creamy Peppermint Bark Puff Pastry Tarts

For me, the entire month of December is pretty much all about peppermint! I especially love peppermint bark, so I created a peppermint bark-inspired dessert that's simple to make, super yummy, and has tons of eye appeal. My festive Creamy Peppermint Bark Puff Pastry Tarts fit the bill -- they're tailor made for the holidays! I used frozen puff pastry shells, and the filling is made with truwhip whipped topping. Unlike the leading frozen whipped topping, truwhip is made with 100% natural ingredients and no hard-to-pronounce preservatives or chemicals! It contains no high fructose corn syrup or hydrogenated oils, and it's also gluten free and certified non-GMO. If that's not impressive enough, it's creamy and tastes great -- making it an ideal recipe ingredient or dessert topping. 

My Peppermint Bark Puff Pastry Tarts feature a flaky puff pastry shell with a peppermint bark rim. The tarts are filled with a pretty pink white chocolate-peppermint mousse and a dollop of snow-white truwhip. They're also perfectly portioned for a perfect Christmas Day dessert after a large celebration meal. No one has to know how simple these tarts are to whip up -- you can even dip the tart shells up to 24 hours before serving to save time on your holiday meal prep!

Monday, December 7, 2015

2015 Holiday Gift Guide for Cooks #holidays #shopping

Last time, I shared my picks for my 2015 Holiday Gift Guide for Food Lovers. Today, I'm sharing my eights picks for my 2015 Holiday Gift Guide for Cooks. The items I'm sharing are perfect for the cooks in your life. I'm sharing everything from kitchen appliances to a duo of essential cookbooks. There's something in every price range let's get started!

(1) Le Creuset Multi Bowl SetLe Creuset is known for its high-quality enameled cast iron cookware – but did you know they also make a fabulous line of stoneware serving pieces? Any cook on your holiday shopping list will absolutely love this set of three dishwasher-safe nested enamel-coated stoneware bowls from Le Creuset. The bowls in this handy set come in three convenient sizes. The 19-ounce small bowl is perfect for serving party dips, the 1-quart medium bowl is perfect for most kitchen mixing duties, and the large 3-quart bowl is a fabulous mixing bowl that also doubles as a pretty serving bowl for salads or side dishes. I also love the fun contrasting black-and-white color scheme of these bowl! This three-bowl set can be purchased at Le Creuset's website and shipped direct to your gift recipient!

(2) Bissell Symphony™ All-In-One Vacuum and Steam Mop Let’s face it, folks: people who cook a lot have a lot of kitchen and dining room messes to contend with. Any device that streamlines cleanup is a true lifesaver! Enter Bissell’s Symphony, which is perfect for keeping both tile and hardwood floors spotlessly clean. This compact steamer/vacuum assembles in less than 5 minutes and is a powerful cleaner. You can choose to steam your floors, vacuum your floors…even do both tasks simultaneously. Symphony uses the power of steam, so all you need is water -- and no scary chemicals -- to kill 99.9% of all germs and bacteria! It also features a washable, re-usable mop pad. I love using my Symphony, because it truly makes keeping my kitchen and entryway sparkling clean! To purchase this powerful cleaner, visit Bissell's website to purchase directly or find local retailers near you.
(3) Boos Block Tenmoku Wooden Cutting BoardBoos is the cream of the crop when it comes to quality, American-made solid wood cutting boards. Boos offers handmade cutting boards in a wide range of sizes and woods, including the Tenmoku model. This new model comes in both Northern Hard Rock Maple and American Black Walnut, and it is available in two sizes. I especially love the stainless steel feet that elevate the board slightly off the kitchen counter, as well as the convenient juice groove. My board's large 24x18x2 size means that I have a large workspace to work with in my kitchen. Maintenance is easy too! Once a month, I rub the board with Boos Mystery Oil and then top it with Boos Cream Finish with beeswax. The Tenmoku can be purchased at select retailers nationwide. The Boos Store Locator has all of the information you need to locate Boos Block cutting boards near you.

(4) Chef John Besh's Besh Big Easy Cookbook. New Orleans Chef John Besh is one of my most favorite chefs, and his latest cookbook is really fabulous! If your holiday shopping list includes someone who loves to cook authentic big-flavor Cajun and Creole dishes in their kitchen, this cookbook is a must! Besh Big Easy features Chef Besh’s versions of 101 classic New Orleans dishes, including Mamma's Seafood Gumbo and Crawfish Beignets with Tabasco Cream Sauce. It also includes lots of personal anecdotes presented with Chef Besh's relaxed Southern charm. This cookbook is an excellent resource for making New Orleans classic dishes at home -- even if you live far from New Orleans! Besh Big Easy can be ordered directly from Chef John Besh's website, and it's also available at most major bookstores nationwide.

Saturday, December 5, 2015

2015 Holiday Gift Guide for Food Lovers: $50 or Less! #holidaygift #affordableindulgences

It's time for my annual Holiday Gift Guide for Food Lovers, where I'm sharing my eight favorite gift ideas for the food lovers in your life! This year, I searched high and low for unique and flavorful gifts that are sure to bring a smile to the foodies on your shopping list. The best news? Every item on the list costs $50 or less (minus any shipping costs if ordering online). Let's get started!

(1) Ticket Chocolate Artisan Peppermint S'mores Kit. For many people -- including yours truly -- peppermint is THE signature flavor of the holiday season. This artisan four-s'more gift set is perfect if you have a peppermint lover, chocolate lover, or s'mores lover to shop for this year! California-based Ticket Chocolate has put together a fabulous Artisan S'mores Kit that features squares of milk chocolate peppermint bark, handmade pink peppermint marshmallows, and homemade chocolate graham crackers. Simply assemble and heat -- the oven will toast the marshmallows and soften the chocolate perfectly in about 5 minutes. The end result is the s'more of your wildest peppermint dreams! In a pinch, you can even microwave 15 seconds (don't ask how I know...). Ticket also offers S'more Kits in Original, Chocolate Lover's, and Dulce de Leche varieties. All Ticket Chocolate S'mores Kit flavors can be purchased via their online store.

(2) Luke's Lobster 1 lb. Raw Split Lobster Tails. This tasty gift is an affordable indulgence for the seafood lovers on your holiday shopping list. With this gift set from Luke's Lobster, they'll receive four portions of lobster tails that are split in half. Simply thaw and they're ready to cook in minutes. If you put the tray in the fridge to thaw when you leave for work, you can enjoy a lobster feast on even the busiest of weeknights. Simply brush the thawed tails with melted butter and a squeeze of lemon, season, and pan sear. In about 10 minutes, dinner is ready! The lobster cooks up juicy and perfectly sweet. I love to serve the seared lobster tail halves on a bed of quick-cook fresh pasta. To order, simply visit Luke's Lobster's Online Shop. Hint: Plan ahead to ensure holiday arrival!  Because lobster is perishable, this item must be shipped overnight, which is an additional fee. That means these kits are shipped to arrive on Wednesdays and Fridays only. 

(3) Bottega Louie Assorted 15-Piece Macaron Sampler. This gorgeous box of jewel-toned macarons from Bottega Louie in Los Angeles is a feast for the palate, as well as the eyes! The macarons are packaged in a feminine pink box and contain a flavor assortment that includes Rosé Champagne, Chocolate Mint, Vanilla, Salted Caramel, Rose, Strawberry, Raspberry, Earl Grey, Lemon, Coconut, Mango, Pistachio, Espresso, Grand Cru, and Violet Cassis. Bottega Louie bakes its macarons fresh each day in small batches. They're made with California almond flour and are filled with fresh fruit compotes, buttercream, and ganache. Bonus: these macarons are gluten free, making them a thoughtful gift for family and friends who follow a gluten-free diet! Bottega Louie Macarons can be ordered from their convenient Online ShopMacarons are fragile, so I was concerned about having them shipped. However, mine arrived carefully packed and in perfect condition! These are some of the best macarons I've ever tasted - very authentic and bursting with vibrant flavor.

(4) Tucson Tamale Box of Happiness Sampler. In many parts of the Southwest, including Texas, tamales are a traditional holiday food. Why not share this tasty tradition with your family and friends around the country? Arizona-based Tucson Tamale makes some of the best tamales I've tried! Their corn masa is flavorful and moist, and they don't skimp on the tasty fillings! Tucson Tamale's Box of Happiness Sampler includes eight packages of their most popular flavors, and it includes both meat and veggie options...they even add a package of sweet pumpkin dessert tamales! Each package arrives frozen, vacuum-sealed and includes two large tamales. My personal favorite flavor is the Santa Fe, which includes juicy pork flavored with green chile, tomato, and onion. 
To order Tucson Tamale's Box of Happiness -- or one of their other fantastic tamale sampler boxes -- visit their online store. Whether you're shopping for a carnivore, breakfast lover, vegetarian, or vegan...they've got you covered!

(5) Adagio Teas IngenuiTEA Set. If you have a tea lover in your life, Adagio Teas' IngenuiTEA Set will totally change their tea brewing experience! This starter set includes an IngenuiTEA teapot and four samples of Adagio's delicious loose tea in your choice of black, green, flavored, or herbal varieties. The easy-to-use teapot is made from BPA-free, dishwasher-safe plastic. Simply add loose tea, pour in hot water, and then place the IngenuiTEA on top of your mug -- brewed tea automatically flows straight into your mug! This set is perfect for use at home or the office -- I transport mine between home and work all the time! To order the IngenuiTEA Set, visit Adagio's online store.

(6) The Crispery's Four CrispyCake Gift Set. Do you have fond memories of the crispy cereal and marshmallow goodies you enjoyed as a kid? The Crispery offers a fun gourmet grown-up version via their Handmade Crisp Rice Marshmallow Treats! They offer a four-treat gift set that's perfect for holiday gift giving. Simply select four flavors from their large selection -- they even offer holiday flavors like Peppermint and Christmas Sprinkles! The Crispery will package your selections in a decorative box and ship it direct to them. These treats are huge -- making them big enough to easily share. The marshmallow is soft -- never sticky or hard to eat. This gift set can be purchased at The Crispery's online store. As an added bonus, The Crispery is offering readers of The Weekend Gourmet at 15% discount when you order using the code WEEKEND15 at checkout!!

(7) Callie's Charleston Biscuit's Baker's Mix-and-Match. This duo of scratch-baked biscuits from Callie's Charleston Biscuit's is perfect for the breakfast lover in your life. Callie's has done all the work for you and baked up amazing homemade scratch biscuits. All your recipient has to do is heat them in the oven...and pop them in their mouth. Callie's Biscuits are handmade in Charleston, South Carolina and baked up fluffy and delicious. I grew up eating homemade biscuits, so I can vouch that are the real deal! The Baker's Mix-and-Match comes with your choice of two flavors: Buttermilk, Country Ham, Cheese and Chive, Cinnamon, Cocktail Ham Biscuits, Black Pepper Bacon, and Sweet Shortcakes. Each package arrives frozen and includes a dozen small biscuits. To order lots of great Southern food items, visit Callie's online store. When ready to serve, simply thaw and bake. We especially love the Buttermilk with butter and strawberry jam! 

(8) Grand Marnier Cordon Rouge Holiday Gift Set. Versatile Grand Marnier orange liqueur is a classic combination of cognac and orange essence. It's also a thoughtful gift for both cooks and cocktail enthusiasts! Grand Marnier makes a great addition to both baking and beverages -- I always have a bottle on hand in my kitchen! This year, they're offering a fantastic Holiday Gift Pack that includes a large bottle of classic Grand Marnier orange liqueur, as well as a small bottle of Raspberry Peach liqueur from their Signature Collection. The Raspberry Peach liqueur combines the classic Grand Marnier flavor profile with the bright flavors of tart raspberries and rare red peaches from the South of France. The resulting flavor profile is fresh and clean -- perfect for making cocktails and desserts. This limited-edition gift set is available nationwide for $39.99. 

Disclosure: The companies featured in my Holiday Gift Guide provided me with complimentary items to facilitate inclusion. I only featured items that I have personally tried and enjoyed myself and am comfortable recommending to you. All opinions expressed are solely my own.

Thursday, December 3, 2015

Quick and Easy Dinner Recipes...Featuring Puff Pastry Taco Turnovers with Avocado Ranch Dipping Sauce #YesYouCAN #CollectiveBias

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #YesYouCAN #CollectiveBias
Let’s face it: the holidays are hectic! However, I still need to make sure that we have a healthy and flavorful dinner to keep us fortified among all of the holiday shopping, present wrapping, etc. I love to combine fresh ingredients with select convenience items to create meals that can be ready and on the table in under an hour. That’s where items like Rosarita ready-to-use refried beans come into play! They save me valuable time, and they provide lots of great flavor. I recently paired Rosarita refried beans and frozen puff pastry with fresh pico de gallo, seasoned lean beef, and other convenient items to create my delicious Puff Pastry Taco Turnovers. They feature all of our favorite taco flavors in a portable turnover that can be enjoyed for lunch, dinner…or even a fun game day snack!
Rosarita ready-to-use canned refried beans are perfect for creating easy, delicious holiday meals and party appetizers. I went to my local Walmart to purchase a variety of canned + fresh ingredients to make my my Puff Pastry Taco Turnovers, which are paired with a simply delicious avocado-ranch dipping sauce. I found the Rosarita refried beans in the Hispanic Foods aisle. By using a combination of convenience and fresh products, dinner prep is simple – and the end results are delicious! As an added bonus, these turnover tacos can even be assembled during the weekend and frozen. Then, they can be baked for dinner during the hectic work week.

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

December Mode Foodie Contributor Program: Texas Holiday Food Traditions

Check out Texas Holiday Food Traditions
by Wendy Wofford-Garcia at Mode

For this month's Foodie Contributor Program, I'm sharing a roundup of Texas Holiday Food Traditions. I'm a native Texan, and there are definitely specific foods that we have to have for our holiday celebrations. When I meet food bloggers who live in other parts of the country, I love to learn about their region or culture's special foods...because food traditions are a big part of what makes each region of our country unique! Food has a strong emotional pull. Certain foods evoke memories of special family dishes and time spent together celebrating. Here in Texas, we have some very specific dishes that we eat when we celebrate Thanksgiving, Christmas, and the New Year. 

To learn more about these foods -- including cornbread dressing for Thanksgiving, tamales for Christmas, and good luck black-eyed peas for the New Year -- simply click on the slideshow above. I'd also love to hear about the traditional holiday foods from your region or country. Please leave me a Comment below telling me what foods are a must at your family's holiday table!

Disclosure: Mode Foodie compensated me for this article. As always, all opinions expressed are solely my own.