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Beef and Blue Cheese Crostini Recipe

Beef and Blue Cheese Crostini Recipe

This quick-and-easy beefy bite is the perfect finger food for your next dinner party.


—  Marinade:

  • 2  cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1/2  teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 2  teaspoons minced fresh rosemary leaves
  • 1/4  cup Crisco 100% Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1/2  pound rare roast beef, thinly sliced

—  Crostini:

  • 1/2  cup Crisco 100% Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 3  cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1  teaspoon Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1  loaf baguette (12 ounces)

—  Blue Cheese Topping:

  • 6  ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 2  tablespoons blue cheese salad dressing
  • 1/2  cup crumbled blue cheese, plus more for garnish
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Prep Time – 150 Cook Time – 15


For the marinade:

  1. Combine garlic, red pepper flakes, pepper, rosemary and oil in microwave-safe cup.
  2. Microwave on HIGH 45 seconds; cool.
  3. Slice beef into approximately 2-inch by 4-inch strips.
  4. Once cooled, place marinade and sliced beef in a resealable bag; toss to coat.
  5. Refrigerate several hours or overnight.

For the crostini:

  1. Preheat oven to 400F.
  2. Combine oil, garlic, salt and pepper in a microwave-safe measuring cup.
  3. Microwave on HIGH 45 seconds.
  4. Slice baguette into 36 (1/2-inch) slices.
  5. Brush one side of each slice lightly with garlic oil.
  6. Place oiled side up on cookie sheet an bake 10 to 15 minutes or until crisp.

For the topping:

  1. Beat cream cheese with electric mixer until smooth.
  2. Add salad dressing; beat until well blended.
  3. Stir in crumbled blue cheese by hand.
  4. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Spread cheese mixture onto crostini. Top with strips of marinated meat. Sprinkle with additional blue cheese; serve.

via Beef and Blue Cheese Crostini Recipe |

Let’s get up to no good,



Entertain Like a Champ: Serving Cake and Ice Cream

Entertain Like a Champ: Serving Cake and Ice Cream

Follow these simple tricks from to cut and dish out these birthday party treats quickly:

Slicing a Sheet Cake

A piece of unflavored waxed dental floss makes faster–and cleaner–cuts than a knife does. Hold a piece of floss taut between your fingers (it should be about a foot longer than the cake itself). Drag it down through the cake, then release one end and pull the other end out of the cake sideways. Continue to “cut” in a grid pattern.

Carving a Round Cake

Forget about fussy slivers. You’ll get more pieces in less time with this method: Use a long, sharp knife to cut a smaller circle inside the larger one. Cut the outer ring into wedges, then cut the remaining, smaller cake as you normally would, like a pizza. Give the frosting-laden outer wedges to the kids, and reserve the more lightly iced interior pieces for the adults.

Dicing the Ice Cream

Save minutes (and your poor wrist) by trading in an ice cream scoop for a knife. Place a cylindrical cardboard container of slightly softened ice cream on a cutting board and cut in half lengthwise to create 2 half circles. Turn each portion of ice cream cut-side down. Remove and discard the packaging. Cut each portion crosswise into slices.

Scooping the Ice Cream

To prevent a sticky situation, start scooping before the party starts. Place individual scoops in a cupcake tin lined with paper baking cups and transfer the tray to the freezer for up to several hours. After the cake is cut, remove the scoops from the paper baking cups (or not) and drop them onto the waiting plates.

via Scooping the Ice Cream | Serving Cake and Ice Cream Like a Pro | Real Simple.

Let’s get up to no good,


How to Get Up to No Good–The Proper Way

While perusing some of my fave blogs today I came across my new solemates: Dave and Ravi of Death&Co in Lower East Side Manhattan. Their overall aesthetic and general attitude is right up my ally–just take a peek at their menu and you’ll see what I mean. They offer a limited selection of crazy-good gourmet bar food and a butterflies-in-my stomach inducing drink selection.

Wondering about the name?

Let me give it to you in their own words:

“To those who shun the night, we tip our hat. To those who shine after dusk, we offer a warm embrace.”

“In 1919 the Volstead Act brought a swift end to nightlife, and the refined craft of the American bartender was outlawed. It was thought that to drink alcohol was to live a life shadowed by death. It was thought by some that these were death and company. It’s taken us nearly a century to restore flavor to the drink and class to specialty cocktails […] To those who shun the night, we tip our hat. To those who shine after dusk, we offer a warm embrace. Welcome to the new golden age. Welcome to Death & Co.”

As you can imagine, these purveyors of life’s simple pleasures have a lot to say about stacking the bottles. Today we bring to you a few of Death&Co’s tips on getting up to no good the proper way:

Lesson 1: Reading is Fundamental

Being a good bartender is more than just making good drinks. You have to do your own studying. The essential library includes:

Lesson 2: The Gear

Here are the basic tools you will need to mix near any drink:

  • A shaker set
  • A mixing glass
  • A bar spoon
  • A julep strainer (rounded flat silver with holes)
  • A jigger (for measuring)
  • A juicer
  • A small cutting board
  • A pairing knife (to cut fruit)
  • A muddler
Image Source
Lesson 3: The Booze
The two most important spirits to have are Gin (Tom Collins, Martinis, simple fizzes) and Rye (Manhattan, Old Fashioned, Sazerac). These may not be the most popular, but they are the most classic. After that you should have rum, vodka, tequila, and sweet & dry vermouth.
Image Source
Lesson 4: The Top Ten
You should learn how to make the following 10 classic cocktails which will give you the building blocks for every other drink:
  • Martini
  • Manhattan
  • Sidecar
  • Margarita
  • Daiquiri
  • Old Fashioned
  • Sazerac
  • French 75
  • Negroni
  • Tom Collins
Lesson 5: Shelf Life
  • If it’s 80 proof, it will last. This rule applies to everything other than vermouth, which is a fortified wine and must be refrigerated. Buy the small bottles of vermouth to avoid their turning before use.
  • DO NOT CHILL ANY SPIRITS! That business about keeping vodka in the freezer is a mistake. When you are mixing something over ice, you need a certain amount of water dilution to mellow the booze. If the alcohol is already cold the ice won’t dilute the drink enough, and you’ll get a very high alcohol taste in the drink.

“Do not chill any spirits! […] When you are mixing something over ice, you need a certain amount of water dilution to mellow the booze. If the alcohol is already cold the ice won’t dilute the drink enough, and you’ll get a very high alcohol taste in the drink.”

Lesson 6: Ice
Stay away from bagged ice if you can. The best ice is from your home’s ice cube tray: it’s cold and hard and won’t over dilute the drinks.
If you wanna get real fancy, you can get creative with your ice:
  • Try pouring water into a muffin tins to make large ice chunks for your Old Fashioned.
  • Pouring water into bread pans or baking trays will allow you to chip away and make your own custom ice for each glass you use.

Image Source

Lesson 7: Freshness Matters

Never use bottled mixers they sell at the store; JUICE YOUR LEMONS AND LIMES! You can buy $4 Margarita mix and drink a glass of garbage or you can be smart and just buy 4 limes for a buck and juice them.
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Lesson 8: Garnishes
Fresh mint, orance, lemon twists, and lime wedges are enough for the home bar. If it doesn’t add to the drink then don’t add it. When you cut your twists, make sure you don’t get too much pith, or it will be too bitter.
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Lesson 9: Serve It Up
Nice glasses are not the most important thing in the world, but if you want to get it right, you’ll want to have some highballs. It’s also nice to have a set of old fashioned glasses for whiskey boozy drinks. Skip the Martini glass purchase; they are gaudy and spill easily. Rather, let luck come into play and make your own eclectic collection of glasses. Just go to Goodwill or another thrift store as these are the best places to score unique old cocktail glasses.
Let’s get up to no good,

DIY Party Decor: Paint Chip Orbs

Ever cringe at the party store’s streamers? Yeah, me too.

Thanks to, here’s a way to create your own custom version for a bit of high style without the high price.

DIY Party Decoration: Paint Chip Balls


  1. Using a circle template, draw 20 circles of equal size on assorted paint swatches just make sure that they aren’t the swatches with perforations and that the size of your circle fits inside the constraints. Any size circle will work; the larger the individual circles, the larger the overall finished size. The circles used here are about 1 inch in diameter. Cut out circles using an X-Acto knife and cutting mat or a circle punch.
  2. Lay one of the circles on the cutting mat, swatch side down. Select an equilateral triangle shape from the template that fits inside the circle. An equilateral triangle is one where all three sides are of equal length. The three points of the triangle should touch but not exceed the outer edge of the circle. Hold the triangle template in place and, using a pencil, draw the triangle shape onto the circular swatch. Continue until triangles are drawn on all 20 circles.
  3. Begin with one circle. Lay the ruler along each of the pencil lines. Score the paper along each line with the X-Acto knife, but do not cut all the way through. Holding the ruler in place, run the X-Acto knife against the ruler’s edge, applying slight pressure to form a crease. Continue until all pencil lines are scored. Fold paper along score lines. This will create a triangle with three flaps as edges.
  4.  To form top portion of ball, you will need five circles. Using a glue stick, adhere glue to one side flap of first circle. Align side flap of second circle to side flap of first circle, pressing firmly to adhere sides together. Make sure edges meet. Continue with the remaining three circles as you form a dome shape.
  5. To form the middle portion of ball, you will need five circles. Adhere these five to the top portion already assembled. Using a glue stick, adhere five side flaps to the five bottom flaps of top portion. This completes one half of the ball.
  6. To form the bottom portion of ball, repeat steps 4 and 5. This will give you two halves. Using a glue stick, adhere both halves together to complete your ball shape.

via I Made This: Paint Chip Orbs.

Let’s get up to no good,


Mason Jar as Blender Jar & Cranberry Margarita Recipe

Mason Jar as Blender Jar & Cranberry Margarita Recipe

Wurrrrrrrrd?!?! I had no idea!

According to Martha, many detachable blender blade assemblies screw right onto a mayo jar or a small-mouth Mason jar. Don’t fill it by more than half, though, and as with any regular blender, avoid very hot liquids.

via Mason Jar as Blender Jar | Real Simple.

And to help you put this idea to good use, give this baby a try:

Who says margaritas are just for summer? Celebrate the holidays with this festive frozen drink featuring both cranberry juice cocktail and fresh cranberries.


Cranberry Margarita

Yield: Serves 4 to 6 (Or 1 if you’re like us!)

Total Time: 10 minutes


  • 1 1/4 cups cranberry juice cocktail, divided
  • 1/2 cup sugar, divided
  • 1 1/2 cups (6 oz.) fresh or frozen cranberries, rinsed
  • 3/4 cup fresh lime juice
  • 3/4 cup tequila
  • 1/2 cup orange-flavored liqueur, such as Cointreau
  • 3 cups coarsely crushed ice
  1. Pour 1/4 cup cranberry juice into a shallow bowl.
  2. Pour 3 tbsp. sugar onto a plate. Dip rims of 4 to 6 widemouthed glasses (6 to 8 oz., suitable for margaritas) into juice, then sugar. Set glasses aside.
  3. Divide among glasses and garnish with whole cranberries, skewered on toothpicks.
  4. In a blender, whirl the remaining cranberries, cranberry juice, and sugar, the lime juice, tequila, orange liqueur, and ice until smooth and slushy. If you’re like us, blend in 2 batches, then mix together.
  5. Freeze for 20-30 minutes if you want it a bit slushy 😉
Let’s get up to no good,

Pumpkin Love

Pumpkin Love

Feeling Fallish yet?

If not, get inspired with these recipes featuring Fall’s famous gourd: the pumpkin.

Wow your guests with these pumpkin-inspired dinner ideas:

Easy Oven-Baked Pumpkin Polenta

This rustic cornmeal dish makes a nice change from mashed potatoes. Serve with roast pork, chicken, beef or meatloaf.

Ham and Cheese Stuffed Pumpkin

A whole pumpkin baked with ham, cheese, bread, garlic and cream. Brush the pumpkin liberally with maple syrup to bring out its sweetness—a great contrast to the ham, bread and cheese.

Turkey Chili with Pumpkin

Pumpkin Dinner Rolls

Top off a fabulous evening with a nightcap and these pumpkin-inspired desserts:

Frosty Pumpkin Pie

Pumpkin Cranberry Cake

Spiced Pumpkin Cookies

Pumpkin Frozen Yogurt

And for the morning after:

Pumpkin Ginger Scones

Pumpkin Streussel Muffins


Let’s get up to no good,


HamBob’s Angel Biscuits

HamBob’s Angel Biscuits

While flipping through yesterday’s paper, I came across an insert I’ve never noticed before: relish. Their website offers recipes and how-to’s geared for in-season ingredients.

One of the featured recipes was for Country Ham Biscuits–an item my family has shared every Christmas for as long as I can remember. Check out this unique take on an old favorite from The Hamery of Murfreesboro, TN:

One of The Hamery’s most popular items is ham biscuits–bite-sized Southern angel biscuits filled with sliced ham. A Southern mainstay at breakfast and holiday parties, angel biscuits are a cross between a biscuit and a yeast roll. It’s said that they’re easier to make than traditional biscuits and more foolproof due to the two types of leavening: baking soda and yeast. The addition of yeast also lightens up the dough, resulting in a lighter biscuit—hence the name.

Traditionally, they’re bite-sized, but if you want bigger biscuits, roll them out 1/2-inch-thick. Another tip—placing the biscuits close together on the baking sheet makes them rise more. Serve them with an eggy dish for breakfast or as a dainty party appetizer, stuffed with thinly shaved country ham and a gloss of pepper jelly.



  • 1  cup buttermilk
  • 1/8  teaspoon baking soda
  • 1  tablespoon active dry yeast
  • 1  tablespoon sugar
  • 1/4  teaspoon salt
  • 1/2  cup warm water (100F to 110F)
  • 3 to 3 1/4  cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2  cup shortening


  1. Mix buttermilk and baking soda together.
  2. Mix yeast, sugar, salt and water together. Let stand until foamy.
  3. Combine flour and shortening, stirring with a fork until mixed well. Mix in buttermilk mixture. Mix in yeast mixture. (Dough will be wet.) Cover loosely with a kitchen towel and let rise in a warm place until doubled in size.
  4. Pat out dough to 1/2-inch thickness on a heavily floured board. Cut biscuits with a 2-inch cutter. Place on a baking sheet and let rise 20 minutes.
  5. Preheat oven to 400F.
  6. Bake biscuits 10 to 12 minutes, until golden brown. Makes about 18.

—Recipe courtesy of The Hamery, Murfreesboro, Tenn.

Nutritional Info (per serving)

  • Calories 135
  • Fat 6g
  • Cholesterol 0mg
  • Sodium 56mg
  • Carbohydrates 18g
  • Fiber 1g
  • Protein 3g

via HamBob’s Angel Biscuits Recipe |

Here are some notes from’s recipe testers:

Very similar to my grandmother’s recipe for Angel flake biscuits which also used yeast. I like biscuits to have a little more browned top, so I think next time I will brush the tops with melted butter before baking. Flaky, light. Very easy to make. Salt was listed in the ingredients list, but the recipe didn’t indicate where it was to be added.  I assumed the salt needed to be mixed with the flour before cutting in the shortening. Great recipe!!

— Mary Cooper

Round golden brown biscuits. Strong taste of yeast and buttermilk in tender biscuits. So delicate. Good with ham steak and herbed goat cheese. I used a powdered buttermilk mix, which produced a thin liquid. Next time, I would use thicker buttermilk from the grocery store dairy department.

— Carolyn Zichterman

via Recipe Testers: October Recipes |


Let’s get up to no good,