Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Spinach and Artichoke Hummus Dip


These are truly a few of my favorite things!! Look!


The ultimate dip mash-up. Perfect for pita chips, chopped veggies, spread on toast, straight off the spoon...


Don't judge me, guys. This Spinach and Artichoke Hummus Dip is everything we always wanted but never knew we needed. Smooth and creamy, bold and full of flavor.


I was inspired to make this dip when I was eating a (ready-made) spinach hummus and thought...we could do better. We can kick things up a notch. Everyone loves spinach and artichoke dip, so why shouldn't we combine it with a smooth homemade hummus, another universally loved dip? The answer is clear: we should combine them, and I did just that and will never go back.


Although the classic spinach dip is made with cream cheese and mayonnaise, I decided to add Mediterranean flare by using greek yogurt and feta cheese. Both yogurt and feta are delicious with hummus, like on a gyro or falafel plate, so it is natural to mix them all together for our dip smash-up!


Prep of this dip couldn't be easier...I simply prepare each dip separately, then gently fold them together like folding egg whites into a cake batter. This ensures that we can taste the components of each dip while at the same time creating a cohesive and smooth spread. Season along the way, as well as one more time at the end. This is a real crowd-pleaser and I can't wait for you guys to try it!!

Monday, April 11, 2016

Gouda Cheddar Ale Fondue


Guys, this is urgent. You know how much as I love cheese. And I know you love it too. So today I present…



BEER AND CHEESE FONDUE!

And not just any beer and cheese fondue…This is a Gouda Cheddar Ale Fondue. And it is life-changing.


Any good fondue has to start with one crucial ingredient – an awesome fondue pot. This outdoor fondue pot from Uncommon Goods is the perfect vessel for our gooey, nutty gouda cheese fondue.


Uncommon Goods is a privately owned retailer based in Brooklyn, NY offering a wide variety of unique and handmade gifts, gadgets, jewelry and d├ęcor. They are a B Corporation, which are organizations that use the power of business to help address social and environmental problems that face us every day. Uncommon Goods is dedicated to producing all products in a way that causes no harm to animals or people, and all employees are paid above minimum wage. Not only does Uncommon Goods provide a platform for local artists and designers to sell their often handmade and upcycled products, but they have also been awarded by Bizrate for outstanding customer service 9 years in a row.


Be sure to check out the Uncommon Goods website the next time you need a distinctive gift for someone special in your life. Many products can be personalized to fit any special occasions and there is truly something for everyone. Check out the wide range of host and hostess gifts, from cheese boards and chip & dip trays to gorgeous hand painted pitchers, here.


This outdoor fondue pot lives up to the expectations and standards set forth by the owners of Uncommon Goods. You can find this product and a wide range of innovative kitchen tools at this page. I love the large square design of the fondue pot, which makes sharing a breeze! Speaking of breeze, because it is an outdoor pot, the heat source is enclosed from 3 sides, making this the perfect addition to a picnic or backyard barbeque. I’m also totally obsessed with the fondue forks, which have 4 different colors on the end! It’s like wine charms…but for your cheese! 


So, cheese fondue. Those two words are music to my ears. But I'm adding beer, because I'm an adult and I can do what I want! I start this recipe with a hoppy white ale, but an amber or brown ale would also add a delightful nuttiness for an even richer fondue flavor. When it comes to the cheese, I am completely obsessed with gouda. It is nutty, a little stinky, and melts like a breeze into a smooth and creamy dip. For sharpness, we need cheddar...it just makes everything better! Extra sharp, if you're feeling sassy like that. We are definitely not skimping in the flavor department! 


When it comes to our dipping agents, I have a few loyal friends that are always invited to the party. First, a crusty, lightly toasted bread, cut into cubes...it's just waiting to soak up the cheesy goodness! Tart green apples add a nice crunch and a balanced sweetness, and I guarantee you'll be going back to dip seconds and thirds in the fondue! Roasted or grilled vegetables, because let's face it...we all learned to love vegetables by dipping them in cheese first. For a heartier option, try grilling up some sausages too! A little protein can go a long way.


I like to arrange all my dippables on one big tray alongside the fondue. A personalized cutting board, like this one, is not only a great gift and conversation piece, but it is easy to pack and put outside on a picnic table, and keeps all the goodies in one place!