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BBQ Pulled Pork Grilled Cheese Sandwiches
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I love lazy weekends where anything is possible.  Breakfast at the diner? OK.  Fussing in the garden?  I’ll take it.  A whirl around the gym?  Only because I have to.  Making grilled cheese for lunch?  You betcha!  (Hence the time at the gym.)  These bbq pulled pork grilled cheese sandwiches were a creation I had been dreaming of since the pork shoulder went in the oven a few weeks ago.  I had also planned on making taquitos with the leftovers but sadly, the leftovers never made it that far.  Anyway, perfectly buttered and toasted white bread hold together this magnificent sandwich combination.  The Monterey Jack melts into the pulled pork just as it should, leaving you with sandwiches that you’ll wish there were more of (though one certainly was plenty for lunch for us).  I decided to toast all of the bread slices independently and to cover the pan to allow the cheese to melt before combining the halves because all too often, when grilled cheese sandwiches have a lot going on inside, the cheese doesn’t melt completely.  Problem solved.  And?  The perfect weekend lunch.

BBQ Pulled Pork Grilled Cheese Sandwiches

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 5 minutes

Total Time: 15 minutes

Yield: 2 sandwiches

As with most grilled cheese sandwiches, the bread you use makes all the difference. Because these sandwiches have the tendency to be on the messy side, choose a hearty white bread that can stand up to the awesomeness within; thick-sliced country white or homemade white bread are excellent choices. I didn’t think of this when making these sandwiches, but if you love red onion like we do, thinly sliced onions would be an excellent addition to this sandwich, as would sliced pickled jalapenos if you’re looking for a little extra bite.

Ingredients

  • 4 slices white bread (see header)
  • Salted butter, softened to almost melted
  • 1 ½ cups bbq pulled pork, warmed
  • 4 oz Monterey Jack or sharp cheddar cheese, shredded

Instructions

  1. Heat a large non-stick skillet over medium heat. Butter one side of all of the bread and place the butter side down in the skillet. Divide the cheese between all of the slices and top the cheese on just of the two slices with the pulled pork.
  2. Cover the pan with a lid or sheet of aluminum foil for about 3 minutes; this will ensure heat melts the cheese and heats the pork through. Remove the lid (or foil) and check the undersides of the bread with a spatula. If all of the slices are lightly browned, flip the slices with the cheese onto the pulled pork so the cheese and pork can meld together. After 30 seconds to 1 minute, flip the sandwiches to finish off the other sides. When both sides of the sandwiches are perfectly browned (you know what that looks like) and the cheese is fully melted, remove them from the pan, cut, and serve hot and gooey.

Source

source: Smells Like Home original

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Broccoli Cheddar Soup
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In the midst of holiday preparation craziness, there was this soup.  Broccoli cheddar soup.  A knock-off of the famed and beloved Panera version, this version is a lighter homemade version where you control the ingredients – I love soups like this one!  I’ve made this recipe a handful of times over the past few years and I seem to make it a little differently each time, mostly just varying the milk ratio (i.e. sometimes adding a little cream in place of some of the skim milk), but it turns out fabulous each and every time.  The consistency isn’t as thick as Panera’s version but like I said, it’s on the lighter side, so if you want to thicken it up, just increase the cream-milk ratio.  The most recent time this soup appeared in our kitchen, I was in the middle of packaging up my Christmas treats over the course of a few days and because the recipe left us a fair amount of leftovers, it was so nice to be able to quickly heat up a bit for lunch.  And aside from a regular weeknight meal, in the past I’ve also made a double batch of the soup, kept it warm in the crock pot, and served it in coffee mugs as a warm appetizer during fall and winter parties.  This broccoli cheddar soup is always a big hit here and is definitely one of our favorites!

Giveaway: Grafton Village Cheese Company Gift Set [CLOSED]
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[THIS GIVEAWAY IS NOW CLOSED.]

Welcome to Round 2 of my “Favorite Things Holiday Giveaway” series!  Today’s giveaway is for a Grafton Village Cheese Company gift package which includes Garlic Cheddar (my favorite!), Aged Cheddar, a VT-shaped cutting board, and a wire cheese slicer.  When I was at Grafton in October, choosing which cheese to buy was insanely difficult due to the overwhelming selection of cheese carried in the shop but I think you’ll be very happy with what is included here…and I’m jealous about the cheese slicer since I regretfully didn’t pick one up for myself when I was there.  Anyway…this package will ship directly from GVCC who specializes in shipping cheese safely.  GOOD LUCK!!

[THIS GIVEAWAY IS NOW CLOSED.]

To enter this giveaway here are The Rules:

  1. Answer this question in the comment section of this post (and only this post):  What is your favorite type of cheese?
  2. Only one entry per person will be accepted and you MUST include a valid email address with your comment.
  3. If you don’t see your comment post right away, please don’t post another comment.  The delay happens because I moderate all comments.
  4. You have until Friday December 2, 2011 at 11:59pm Eastern to enter this giveaway.
  5. One winner will be chosen by that handy-dandy random number generator we’re all familiar with.
  6. The winner will notified by Monday December 5, 2011.  If you do not respond to my email within 48 hours, another winner will be chosen (also at random).
  7. Giveaway is open to entries with U.S. addresses only.

—-

Disclosure:  This giveaway is sponsored by yours truly.

Baked Fontina
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Baked Fontina

Brace yourselves for possibly the easiest appetizer you’ll ever come across.  I’d say this recipe is even easier than putting together a cheese platter because there is no agonizing over what cheeses to buy – wait…am I the only on who agonizes over things like this?  Anyway, for this baked fontina, you’ll cube some Italian fontina, chop some garlic and herbs, put everything in a cast iron pan, and pop it under the broiler for 6 minutes.  That’s it!  The result is a baked fondue of cheesy goodness that you can scoop up with hunks of bread, toasted sliced bread, or even crackers or Wheat Thins.  The garlic and herbs permeate throughout the cheese when it bakes and every bite has a blast of herby flavor.  It’s heaven…melted cheese heaven.

Baked Fontina

I made this for a Christmas Day appetizer last year, have made it a couple times since (a halved recipe in an 8″ cast iron pan), and I’ll be making it again for a Thanksgiving appetizer this year; it’s always a huge hit wherever I bring it.  Whether you’re hosting turkey day and want to work this into your menu or you plan to bring this to someone’s house, cube the cheese and chop the garlic and herbs in advance and keep them in airtight containers until you’re ready to bake.  Bring your cast iron pan with you (doesn’t everyone travel with kitchen equipment?) just in case your host doesn’t have one for you to use.  Since the recipe only needs 6 minutes under the broiler, you can even take the turkey out of the oven for a few minutes (cover it tightly with foil) and slip the pan in to bake.  Hot appetizers really don’t get any easier than this one and I can already anticipate how quickly this baked fontina will go on the appetizer table this year.

Baked Fontina

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 6 minutes

Total Time: 11 minutes

Yield: 10-12 appetizer servings

Be sure you use Italian fontina in this recipe. Danish fontina will not melt properly. If you absolutely can't find Italian fontina, brie (with the rind removed) will also work great here.

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 lbs Italian fontina, rind removed and cubed into 1-inch pieces
  • 6 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • 1 tbsp fresh thyme, chopped
  • 1 tsp fresh rosemary, chopped
  • 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp Kosher salt
  • 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper

Instructions

  1. Adjust top rack of the oven so that it sits about 5 inches under the broiler unit. Preheat broiler.
  2. Spread cheese out in the bottom of a 12-inch cast iron pan. Drizzle olive oil over the cheese. Mix together the garlic and herbs in a small bowl and sprinkle the mixture evenly over the cheese. Sprinkle salt and pepper over the top of the cheese.
  3. Bake for 6 minutes, until the cheese is bubbly and melted through. Carefully remove the pan from the oven and set it on a heatproof surface - the pan will be hot! Serve immediately.

Source

source: adapted from How Easy is That? by Ina Garten

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Restaurant Style Queso Dip
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I’m sure I’m not the only person out there who is always looking for the ever elusive queso dip that we all love from our local Mexican restaurants.  As far as the easy options go in order to make it at home, there are two typical options: the jarred stuff and the block stuff to mix with salsa or Rotel.  But you know what?  This homemade version isn’t any more difficult than making queso dip with block cheese and in my opinion (and not just my opinion), it’s 100x better than either the block cheese version or the quick and dirty jarred stuff.  A quick sauté of some diced onions and fresh pepper, melt in some shredded cheese then add some cream, tomato, and cilantro and you’ve got homemade restaurant style queso dip!

Restaurant Style Queso Dip

The key to this recipe is the addition of deli-sliced American cheese (don’t judge!).  I also threw in some pepper Jack and provolone partly because they both melt really well but mostly because I didn’t have enough American in the house when I made this on a whim last weekend – my modifications to the original recipe are below.  Once heated through (and thoroughly stirred while it’s being heated), this recipe yields a nice, creamy queso dip.  As you can see, it’s also the perfect topping for some chili nachos (game time, anyone??) and we also topped a couple of steamed hot dogs with the queso for dinner one night this week as well.  And wouldn’t this queso be an awesome way to make homemade cheese fries as well?  You bet!  Overall, this is a definite winner and you certainly won’t find any other queso dip in my house from here on out.

Fried Pimiento Mac and Cheese for a Virtual Baby Shower
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As I sit here in my little kitchen staring at a pile of dirty dishes, with the lingering scent of vegetable oil swirling in the air from the fan overhead, I’m wondering if I did the right thing.  Should I have just made a classic mac and cheese recipe instead of a pimiento mac and cheese?  Should I have even attempted to make pimiento cheese, a food I’ve only eaten once in my lifetime?  Should I have taken a perfectly good batch of mac and cheese and fried it?

And as my doubt swirls as much as the smell in the air, I’m going to share my resolute response with you:  Yes, to everything above.  It was the right choice to make fried pimiento mac and cheese.  After all, how could a virtual baby shower for one of my greatest blogging friends, Josie of Pink Parsley, the self-proclaimed lover of pimiento cheese, be complete without some of this standard Southern fare?  How could I not try my hand at Southern food, even if I am a Yankee?   At our get-together dinner the night before BlogHer Food ’11, I experienced not only pimiento cheese for the first time ever, but also fried okra, both at the not-so-subtle urging of Josie, Branny, and Courtney.  I was totally hooked on pimiento cheese and after an arduous struggle over what to make for Josie’s baby shower, I decided to incorporate two of Josie’s favorite foods together into pimiento mac and cheese…and then to fry it.

Fried Pimiento Mac and Cheese

I scoured 4 or 5 different recipes that included pimiento cheese, including a few of Josie’s own recipes as well as a pimiento mac and cheese recipe.  Then I jotted down a few notes about ingredients, how I wanted to go about making the recipe (i.e., adding homemade pimiento cheese to a bechamel sauce vs. making a bechamel sauce and adding separate ingredients), tweaked the recipe a little here and a little there, and came up with a pimiento mac and cheese recipe that I’m proud to share with you.  I’ve tested this recipe a couple times (and actually have made it both ways as mentioned above) and will suggest that in order to fry the mac and cheese, you’ll want to make sure the final mixture is a little on the creamy side in order to form balls out of the chilled mac and cheese without them crumbling apart.  The recipe below will yield enough mac and cheese for about 18 fried mac and cheese balls or 4 servings for a main course – adjust the measurements to your needs.  Kyle and I both loved this mac and cheese (both in the indulgent fried form and in a baked form for dinner one night) and in spite of adapting a few recipes to make this dish worthy of a true Southerner, I am confident that I have succeeded.

Josie has been a very dear friend and after spending a few days with her in Atlanta in May, I can honestly say that you’ll be hard-pressed to find a more sincere and generous person or blogger or a more loving and dedicated mom to Caroline.  I’m hoping that after baby Pink Parsley is born next month that we’ll be able to get together again soon!  Josie – I hope my Yankee fried pimiento mac and cheese puts a smile on your Southern face today and I can’t wait to meet your new little boy!  Party planner extraordinaire, Annie of Annie’s Eats, has put together a fantastic line-up of bloggers to celebrate the upcoming birth of Josie’s little boy so be sure you check out both Annie’s and Josie’s blogs for the links to all of the recipes included in this virtual baby party.

Rosemary Asiago Focaccia
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This post has been a long time coming.  Since before I started baking any kind of bread, I’ve wanted to make focaccia.  The puffy center and slightly crisp crust of freshly baked focaccia has always excited me.  Yet it’s terrified me at the same time.  How could what I make ever compare to the greatness of some focaccia I’ve eaten?  Folks, that’s what learning to cook and bake is about.  It’s about trying out new things, hoping they come out the way you want, and trying again if they don’t.  Fortunately for me, this focaccia was everything I had hoped it would be.

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Since this Italian bread is as much of a blank canvas as pasta is, the possibilities for toppings (or even fillings!) are only as restricted as your imagination.  I topped my first loaf with chopped rosemary and Asiago cheese and served it alongside spinach lasagna and a green salad.  Nothing fancy, just good, homey Italian food for a Sunday night supper.  The focaccia was beyond my expectations and half of the loaf was easily gone after a dinner with four people.  Even after we had finished eating and were sitting at the table chatting before the dishes were cleared, we were still stealing pieces to munch on from the bread basket.  The rosemary lends some really great flavor to the bread and the powerful Asiago is the perfect complement to the punch of the fresh rosemary.  While from start to finish, this focaccia takes nearly 20 hours to make, almost all of the time is inactive, and the overnight starter is a key component to the final flavor, so don’t skip that step.  You’ll be able to find plenty of things to do during the inactive starter/rise/proof time like sleep, make scones, hummus, toffee bar brownie torte, and spinach lasagna.  Sunday was a very busy day for me in the kitchen but it was topped off with a very special accomplishment: my first focaccia.

Bacon-Cheddar Scones
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Bacon-Cheddar Scones

When I think of breakfast pastries, a savory item usually isn’t what I think about.  Muffins – yes. Cheese Danish – oh yeah.  Cinnamon buns – gimme gimme gimme!  And though I love so many varieties, scones aren’t usually what I reach for…but I think my mind is changing now after making these bacon-cheddar scones.  How could anything with bacon, cheddar, and scallions not be amazing?  Quick and simple to put together, I think what’s so great about them (aside from the guaranteed amazing flavor), is that you can make them for any meal.  I served them with some cheesy scrambled eggs but making them to serve with a roast chicken for dinner or a pot of soup for lunch would be totally acceptable and I’m sure very well-received, also.  If you know you’ll be in a pinch for time, I suggest cooking your bacon earlier in the week when you have the time and pulling it out of the fridge when you’re ready to make the scones.  Alternatively, you can make the dough in advance, cut and freeze it…then bake the scones off when you’re ready for them.

Bacon-Cheddar Scones

Many thanks to Mariana of Food Junky for choosing these scones for this week’s Project Pastry Queen task.  I knew they would well-worth the 3+ years I’ve been waiting to make them!

Chipotle Mac and Cheese
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Chipotle Mac and Cheese

There are weeks when I feel like my brain is working in overtime.  Last week was one of those weeks.  I wasn’t feeling 100% for most of the week and by Friday, I was kaput.  Done.  Fried.  I worked only in the morning, had a doctor’s appointment and came home early ahead of the snow that started building during my afternoon nap (which felt wonderful by the way).  And since it was snowing so heavily, I nixed my weekly Friday evening grocery store trip which left me scrambling for ideas of what to make for dinner.  I wanted something warm and comforting, especially considering the convergence of the weather and my rough week.  I wanted mac and cheese.

Chipotle Mac and Cheese

But I had no ordinary mac and cheese in mind.  I had some smokey chipotle cheddar cheese leftover from book club the previous night and was dying to use it up.  I also had a small can of chipotles in adobo in my pantry that was screaming to be used…and hence the idea of this chipotle mac and cheese was born.  Probably not to my despair, we were out of milk but I certainly had plenty of heavy cream and half-and-half!  Holy cow – mac and cheese made with heavy cream and half-and-half? Yes, please!!  I rarely use anything other than skim milk for mac and cheese so this dish turned out to be such a treat.  It was creamier than I could have imagined, oooey-gooey from all three types of cheese, and had just enough smokey heat to boost my mood and warm me up for the rest of that cold, snowy night.  Kyle and I both loved this mac and cheese so much that we’ve been fighting for the leftovers for lunches this weekend.  Luckily, the recipe makes almost enough to feed an army so there will plenty to go around your table too!

Pizza Bites
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What a better way to start the new year than with some Pizza Bites?  When there’s bread and cheese involved, diets be damned! Actually, I made sure I made these bites before the annual resolution kicked in today so as to avoid any guilt.  And boy were they worth every bit of anticipation I had about them since Annie posted about them almost a year ago.  Seriously, they were amazing – so good that I’m ashamed to admit that Kyle and I polished off the whole batch by ourselves on NYE.  You could fill them with practically anything but the process is simple: cut pizza dough into 20-24 pieces, press some mozzarella cheese and pepperoni (or turkey pepperoni, or cooked ground sausage, etc.) into the dough, and wrap the dough around the filling.  You’ll bake them for 20 minutes and then watch them get devoured.  I can’t see these lasting very long at any party so go ahead and double the recipe – your friends will thank you.

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Buffalo Chicken Pizza
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Remember the days when you were convinced you didn’t like a certain food…and then by some unknown miracle, you found out that you actually loved that food?  Most of us have a food like that.  For me, it’s buffalo sauce.  When my girlfriends were putting down 10¢ happy hour wings in college, I was studying. Or working.  And when Domino’s showed up at the dorm in the wee hours of the night with a butt-load of extra hot wings after a long night at the bars, I usually was no where to be found (Read: already showered and in bed). I couldn’t be bothered with anything having to do with buffalo.

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But in my post-post college years, something awakened inside me.  Now 10 years after college, my college girlfriends and I still meet up a few times a year and it should be no surprise that we meet for wings. It was a few years ago that something told me that I needed to partake in this wing obsession that my girlfriends still harbored  So I gave these much beloved buffalo wings a shot and through the sweaty red face and fingertips full of hot sauce and ranch dressing, I fell in love.  I couldn’t believe what I had been missing all those years ago!  So I pitched the idea of getting wings one night to Kyle and got a thumbs down. Another non-believer! Boooo!

But there was a way around this.  A way to get my way and get some of that winged goodness in my house without Kyle turning it down…I’d put it on a pizza.  And let’s just say that he loves this pizza just as much as I do.  It’s spicy.  It’s sweet.  The flavors almost caramelize together and make it impossible to resist going back for seconds.  You won’t see a pizza dough recipe below but I’ll tell you that I’ve tried 3 or 4 different dough recipes for this pizza in the past and I wholeheartedly recommend Annie’s favorite recipe (also linked below since I haven’t blogged about it yet).  Don’t wait like I did to try out a pizza like this one; I know you’ll love it as much as we do!

Still not ready for buffalo chicken pizza?  Here are some other recipes to try out:

Cranberry Lime Bellinis for a Virtual Holiday Party
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Cranberry Lime Bellini

The Christmas season is certainly my most favorite time of year and this year it got a little brighter when Annie invited me to her Virtual Holiday Party.  As a blogger, I’ve made some wonderful connections to other bloggers and this party is made up of some of best on my list.  I have known a few of them for about 4 years…even before we started blogging!  Our relationships started on a message board, moved to our blogs and blogging groups, to email and to our personal Facebook accounts…and these ladies have been my cooking, baking, and blogging inspiration for years.  Wanna know who I hung out with at our Virtual Holiday Party??

What a list, huh?  Well, you know as well as I do that if a party involves food bloggers, there’s going to be food.  And this party was no different.  Annie asked us to bring either a cocktail, appetizer, or dessert – the perfect kind of party food to pick on with good friends!  Booze isn’t the normal thing you’d find on Smells Like Home…it’s what I feel like I struggle most with when I host people in my home so I figured this would be a great time to try out a new drink – everyone needs a great holiday drink in their repertoire!  So how about some Cranberry Lime Bellinis?  The recipe calls for prosecco but I think champagne worked just as nicely and I even made a virgin version (made with ginger ale) for those of us who pass on the booze.  I knew the girls would love these…Pass around a tray of these in some fancy glasses with a few frozen cranberries floating in them and you’ve got not only a gorgeous holiday drink, but also such a girlie drink!  All that’s needed now (aside from some great chit-chat) is some more alcohol and of course some food!

Kelsey didn’t let us down on the drink front.  She brought along some Pepper Berry Cocktails – don’t they look amazingly refreshing?!  It’s a good thing I wasn’t driving home from this party because these look just too good to pass up.

Elly is the queen of Greek food and she certainly brought it with these Dolmades (stuffed grape leaves).  I’ve recently tried them for the first time and loved them but I’m sure the ones I had pale in comparison to Elly’s!


Nikki, be still my heart, showed up with Baked Fontina…a recipe I’ve been dying to try for weeks.  Wouldn’t you just love to bury some toasty bread into this?!

No holiday party is complete without dessert and boy were there two doozy desserts at this party!

Josie graced our presence with Raspberry Cream Puffs.  Uh…helloooo gorgeous!  Just look at how that raspberry pastry cream is just itching to be tasted!


And our hostess, Annie, made some of her most delectable treats: Macarons. She of course, upped the ante and made Candy Cane Macarons for this party though!  Being a lover of peppermint myself, I absolutely can’t resist them!

What a fab party this was – great friends and great food making this Christmas season just a little bit merrier.  Thank you, Annie, for hosting and for inviting us to join you!  I have a little surprise for you…let’s call it a hostess gift…since I know how much you LOVE this treat. And don’t ask Ben hide it on you either – its yours to enjoy! :)

Merry Christmas everyone!  Be sure to check out all of the links here for the fabulous recipes that go along with the amazing photos!

Cranberry Lime Bellinis

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Total Time: 5 minutes

Yield: 6 servings

For the virgin version: Swap out the prosecco/champagne for 14 oz ginger ale and increase the amount of cranberry juice to 14 oz

Ingredients

  • 12 oz cranberry juice, chilled
  • 16 oz prosecco or champagne, chilled
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • Frozen fresh cranberries

Instructions

  1. In a large pitcher, pour in the cranberry juice, prosecco or champagne, and lime juice. Stir to combine. Pour into champagne flutes or tall slender glasses and garnish with a few frozen cranberries in each glass. Serve chilled.

Source

adapted from Giada DeLaurtentiis

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Onion and Fennel Soup Gratin
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The cold weather is definitely upon us here in the Northeast and there’s nothing better than a good bowl of hot soup to warm the soul.  In the next couple of weeks I’ve got some great soup recipes to share with you and maybe not so ironically enough, they all come from Ina Garten.  I’ve been a big fan of Ina’s soups for a while now and it was actually her recipes that made me so comfortable making soup.  Believe it or not, I once thought it was difficult!

Onion and Fennel Soup Gratin comes from Ina’s new[ish] cookbook, How Easy Is That? and was one of the Barefoot Bloggers’ November recipes.  I’m almost ashamed to admit that I’ve never eaten any kind of onion soup before so I definitely was on board for this recipe.  And the timing of my making it perfectly coincided with my cousin’s (the soup maven) visit a couple of weekends ago.   She’s a connoisseur of onion soup and this one has her (and my!) stamp of approval.  While the recipe does take almost 2 hours to make from start to finish, the technique is basic.  It’s a full-bodied broth-based soup that’s loaded with wine, Cognac, and sherry (they all cook down beautifully) and the addition of toasted bread and melted Gruyere easily puts it in the dinner or heavy lunch categories.  As the title indicates, fennel is a main ingredient but I honestly think you could make the soup without it sans any ill effects on the flavor.  I think you should set some time aside soon to make this one!

How about some of my other favorite Barefoot Contessa soup recipes?

Brie and Brisket Quesadillas
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brie and brisket quesadillas 1

If you’re thinking that brie and brisket sounds like a weird combination, I’d say you’re right.  It sounds weird but this recipe was so intriguing to me as I flipped through The Pastry Queen for my second Project Pastry Queen recipe choice.  Brie is right at the top of my favorite cheeses list and I absolutely can’t pass it up when served all warm and melty.  And it’s the brie that drew me to this recipe; the brisket was only a bonus.

It took me a long time to get to making this recipe since Project Food Blog seems to be taking up large parts of my weekends so I ended up cooking the brisket one weeknight after dinner and making the quesadillas the next night.  For me, this worked out really well since my workdays seem to be getting longer and sometimes cooking a full dinner is the last thing I want to do when I get home.  On the night we made the quesadillas, I quickly threw the mango bbq sauce together (easy!!) then cut and reheated the brisket in some of the sauce.  (I kept the rest of the sauce in a glass jar for later use.)  And let me tell you, for a meal that came together in 15 minutes, this was certainly one of the best we’ve had in quite a long time.  Each of the three main components (brie, mango bbq sauce, and brisket) are all dominant flavors by themselves but put together, they are just so right.  Sweet, salty, tangy, savory…plus the crunch of the tortillas…yum!!  I mixed a little mango chutney into some sour cream for dipping and served alongside some rice or black beans, this meal is a keeper!

Ina Garten’s Ultimate Grilled Cheese
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Does grilled cheese ever get old?  Not in this house!

And evidently, not for the Barefoot Contessa either since the Ultimate Grilled Cheese is one of the recipes from her upcoming new book, How Easy Is That?

I’m still swooning over this simple sandwich on steroids. It’s Bread + Cheese + Butter x 10.  Plus some bacon and mayo.  No joke, this was a fabulous sandwich.  How could it not be with a line-up like that one? Though I suppose it isn’t a sandwich for lightweights.  You have to be all or nothing.  Do this sandwich justice.  And if your conscience nags you about eating this, you can always eat two meals of fruit for the day.  Like I did.  ‘Cause lots of fruit totally negates the butter, cheese, and bacon.  Totally.

When you make this…and you will want to…head over to Ezra Pound Cake and thank Rebecca for choosing this recipe for the Barefoot Bloggers to make this month.  She didn’t have much to go off of because she doesn’t have a copy of the book yet but went on a hunch after seeing the recipe mentioned on the Amazon.com write-up of How Easy Is That? I love her hunches.