Archive for March, 2013

March 18, 2013

HOLEY Guacamole

Guacamole is DELICIOUS! Everyone can admit that. It can also be wildly expensive. With avocados costing $1.00 or more each, making a big batch of guacamole can be pricey!

It is crucial to find the right avocado to make good guac. It needs to be soft and ripe, but not spoiled.


So how did Geff and I make approx $60 worth of Guacamole for only about $10?

The magic of my favorite section at the grocery store; Managers special!

We got 20 avocados for $6.00 in the discount section at King Soopers, and they happened to be the most PERFECT avocados for guacamole!

So what went into the biggest bowl of guacamole I’ve ever seen?


20 ripe avocados

3 yellow onions

1 bunch of cilantro

4 tomatoes

2-3 jalapenos

1/2 cup of salsa

3-4 limes


Garlic Powder (or fresh garlic)


Half and peel the avocados and put them aside. Peel onions and chop or put in food processor (this is much easier on the eyes). Chop jalapenos cilantro and tomatoes in food processor.

Mash the avocados and combine with the salsa and veggies. We combined the ingridents in the Kitchen-aid because it was such a large ammount of avocados. Add in lime juice and cover top of guacamole with lime or lemon juice to keep it from turning brown. Add salt and garlic powder to taste.


Dig In!


March 10, 2013

Orange Chipotle Chicken Tacos

By now, you know that I love Rick Bayless. I think his recipes are great, though I often use them as a jumping off point and find my own way. These tacos were inspired by Frontera’s Chipotle Steak Tacos with Caramelized Onions. We didn’t have steak around, but I found a can of chipotles and some chicken. This ended up great. Just enough kick and a simple recipe. If you like the smokiness of chipotle, you will love this!


Orange Chipotle Chicken Tacos

  • 1 to 1 1/2 pounds chicken breast
  • 1 can chipotle chilies
  • Zest and juice of 1 orange
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable or olive oil
  • 2 medium white or red onions, sliced ¼-inch thick
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • Salt
  • 12 warm corn tortillas

Puree the chipotle chilies and their sauce in a blender until smooth. (Thin with a few tablespoons of water or chicken broth if necessary.) Slice the chicken breasts crosswise, about 1 inch thick. Toss with a few tablespoons of the chipotle puree so it is just coated. (Use sparingly if you are spice averse.)

Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a large (12-inch) skillet over medium-high.  Add the onions and cook, stirring frequently, until golden, but still crunchy, about 4 minutes.  Scoop into a bowl.

Return the skillet to medium-high heat. Add the remaining 1 tablespoon of the oil. When hot, lay in the chicken.  Brown on all sides, and cooked through.  Toss the meat with the onions. Add zest and juice from the orange and simmer until the chicken is coated. Taste and season with salt. 

Serve with the warm tortillas, shredded cheddar cheese and some spicy greens.

March 3, 2013

Graduation Party Family Style Recipes

Continuing on our earlier post, Graduation Party Family Style, we bring you the recipes. It is amazing how you find favorites that are always there and reinvent them for a new theme. We do that often in our cooking. Things do always seem to evolve and are rarely exactly the same twice. In addition, we are never afraid to try something new for a party. If it doesn’t come out, we improvise…that is half of the fun! As long as you can find a way to enjoy the party, you have succeeded. Let us know how you like these!

The “No Fork” Menu


Challah Bread

Homemade Rolls – just like the buns we made before only smaller!


Homemade BBQ Sauce: This one deserves its own post, so look out for this to come!

Lemon Aioli: Sans basil; so easy!

Cranberry Chipotle Sauce:

Start with cranberry sauce (ours was saved from Thanksgiving and canned), take one chipotle pepper and 1 tablespoon of the canning sauce and blend all ingredients together. Use as a spread for your sandwich (or on everything, it is so good!) If you wanted to get really creative, you could make it into butter or mayo to make a creamy spread. YUM.

Parmesan Croutons:

Preheat the oven to 375°. Cut stale bread into cubes as desired. Place in a bowl and toss with a sprinkle of olive oil, salt, crushed red peppers, and crushed fresh garlic cloves. Melt about a tablespoon of butter in a skillet over medium high heat add the bread to lightly toast the croutons. Stir to brown on all sides. Toss with shredded parmesan cheese. Place the skillet in the oven for about 10-20 minutes until mostly dried out. Allow to cool and store in an airtight container.

Goat Cheese and Pear Appetizer:

Kelly found this recipe for Goat Cheese and Pear appetizer on Pinterest. Just slice the pears (we dipped in some lemon water to reduce browning), then spread goat cheese, and sprinkle with chopped pistachios and dried cranberries. If I was going to do this again, I would make them right before. I don’t think it saved very well, so perhaps best for a smaller group. Also, the original recipe left a bit of space for picking up, which is a great idea. That said, this was a keeper!

Relishes in Jars

Mary found this idea for the relishes on Pinterest, again! Just find some different jars or vases and fill with vegetables. It creates a great color blocked look.

Caesar Salad Spears with Green Goddess Dressing.

The idea for this salad dish was that guests could pick up the individual spears which were already dressed with Green Goddess and Croutons.

For the Green Goddess, we used about 1 cup of our lemon aioli (leave out the basil), ½ bunch of scallions, ½ cup of chopped Italian parsley, anchovy paste to taste (about 1 tsp), 2 cloves garlic, salt and pepper to taste. Place all ingredients in the blender and blend until smooth.

For the salad, place spears on a platter and dress in layers. Top with croutons and enjoy!


Elvis Style Cole Slaw

Remember this one? All we did was leave out the basil in the aioli and voila it becomes Elvis Style!

Cupcake Mania

We made homemade Sprinkles Chocolate Frosting. I will not even try to take credit for this frosting. It is AWESOME. Every single time it is great. It is rich and light at the same time. If you have been looking for a great frosting, here it is! We just used a chocolate cake recipe that we had on hand, but we are still in search of the perfect cupcake recipe…let us know if you have one!!

We thought this was a hugely successful party, but wish we had hired some help to better serve the 65 people who came. We would have had a better chance to visit with people. Parties like this are always easier in the summer because you can spread out more and make more targeted areas for food, drinks, etc. Overall, we thought this was one of our best parties. We had a great crowd and a great team effort to pull it off! One of the biggest successes of any party has to do with the people you invite and we had a great crowd! Thanks to everyone who shared this day with us.

& Kelly



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