Pumpkin Perfection: A Columbus Blogger Recipe Round-up

Lots of unnecessary things are being made into pumpkin spice flavors. Does the world really require squash-scented cleaning products? Are folks seriously clamoring for pumpkin-flavored Jello or Pringles?  I like fall as much as the next gal, but let’s keep pumpkin in the realm of normalcy. To that end, some of my favorite Columbus food bloggers have your pumpkin needs covered! These local foodies are serving up a slew of pumpkin spice dishes, both sweet and savory. Check out their recipes below, as well as my contribution: Pumpkin Spice Latte Waffles.

The Beard and The Baker

Pumpkin Banana Bread

Hannah is a blogger babe, and I can always turn to her for a great recipe. This pumpkin banana bread is no exception – why choose pumpkin or banana when you can have both? Don’t forget to add a slather of butter to this breakfast treat!

Hummusapien

Pumpkin Spiced Cashew Cream Toast

Move over avocado toast – autumn is here! You may have noshed on her variation of this toast at Alchemy Juice, but Alexis’ make-at-home version is oh-so drool-worthy and surprisingly easy.

Lydi Out Loud

Soft Pumpkin Cookies with Cream Cheese Frosting

What’s not to love about a puffy pumpkin confection topped with a dollop of tangy frosting and a dash of cinnamon? Lydi Out Loud promises these cookies will melt in your mouth, and I have no doubt she’s right.

The Spiffy Cookie

Goat Cheese and Sage Pizza with Pumpkin Crust #PumpkinWeek

Pumpkin pizza crust might be the most genius idea since the invention of the PSL, and pairing it with goat cheese and sage takes this recipe over the top. Erin has lots of other sweet spins on pumpkin as well, so be sure to search her site for more inspiration.

Whole Living Lauren

http://www.wholelivinglauren.com/new-blog/2016/10/31/creamy-vegan-pumpkin-soup?rq=pumpkin

Tomato soup has nothing on PUMPKIN soup. This dreamy version will have you wishing fall will last forever, and it packs a pumpkin punch with 2 full cans of pumpkin puree on the ingredient list.

Neighbor Food

Pumpkin Spice Crumb Cake

Squash out those cold weather blues with this luscious dessert idea courtesy of Courtney. I can’t get over that buttery crumb layer sprinkled on top of the cake, and neither should you.

Fervent Foodie

Pumpkin Whoopie Pies

There’s something about a sandwich cookie I just can’t resist, and this oldie but goodie recipe from Mary looks just about perfect. This is definitely pumpkin power in dessert form.

Crave Columbus

Pumpkin Spice Mini Donuts- Gluten Free

Too lazy to stroll for a pumpkin-centric breakfast? Kayla has you covered in the donut department with this mini pumpkin spice iteration. Added bonus: these goodies are gluten-free, so get to snacking!

Columbus Culinary Connection

Pumpkin Spice Latte Waffles

This is one of those go-to recipes in my fall arsenal. It’s pumpkiny but not too sweet, and the waffles are tender and packed with fragrant spices.

Have a beloved pumpkin recipe from a Cbus blogger pal? Let me know in the comments below!

Keep Connected,

Caroline

Sparkling Sangria

As a kid, I never understood why anyone liked sparkling water. Why choose water when pop was a possibility? I suppose I’m officially old, because I’m a convert to the bubbly fruit beverage. I always keep 2 or 3 varieties in the fridge these days, for hydration and to add to cocktails. Like many millenials, I’m currently crazy for LaCroix, but when a friend tipped me off to Kroger’s line of seltzer water, I’ve been frequently purchasing those as well. The only thing that can improve sparkling water though, is adding it to summery sangria. Wine + sparkling water + citrus is destined for greatness. I’ve tried using both LaCroix Cherry Lime and Kroger Blackberry Citrus versions, but any flavor would be tasty. Get to sipping with the recipe below!

Sparkling Sangria

Yield: 6 cocktails

Ingredients

1 bottle of your favorite wine (I prefer red)
1/4 c. lime juice
1/4 c. orange juice
1/4 c. sugar
1 grapefruit, sliced
1 lime, sliced
1 orange, sliced
1 apple, sliced
2 cans of your favorite sparkling water

In a large pitcher, pour in the wine and juices, stirring the liquids together. Add in the sugar and fruit; stir again to dissolve sugar. Place the pitcher in the fridge to allow fruit to flavor the wine. Let the mixture sit for at least 4 hours, but preferably overnight. When ready to serve, divide the sangria mix between 6 wine glasses. Make sure to place soaked fruit in each glass. Top each glass off with 3 oz. of sparkling water for fizz, serve and enjoy!

PS: I love a good LaCroix debate. Let’s settle this – what is the best fruit flavor? Please don’t say the cucumber one.

Keep Connected,

Caroline

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Sparkling Sangria
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 6
 
Ingredients
  • 1 bottle of your favorite wine (I prefer red)
  • ¼ c. lime juice
  • ¼ c. orange juice
  • ¼ c. sugar
  • 1 grapefruit, sliced
  • 1 lime, sliced
  • 1 orange, sliced
  • 1 apple, sliced
  • 2 cans of your favorite sparkling water
Instructions
  1. In a large pitcher, pour in the wine and juices, stirring the liquids together.
  2. Add in the sugar and fruit; stir again to dissolve sugar.
  3. Place the pitcher in the fridge to allow fruit to flavor the wine.
  4. Let the mixture sit for at least 4 hours, but preferably overnight.
  5. When ready to serve, divide the sangria mix between 6 wine glasses. Make sure to place soaked fruit in each glass.
  6. Top each glass off with 3 oz. of sparkling water for fizz, serve and enjoy!

 

Teriyaki Turkey Lettuce Cups

In family-style Asian fusion restaurants, everyone goes ga-ga over the lettuce cups that these chains often serve as an appetizer. Everyone, that is, except me. Please don’t close out this page yet though, and bear with me here. It’s the lettuce. I just can’t stand iceberg lettuce; it’s too crunchy, it has no flavor, I absolutely cannot do it. So, a recipe recreation is in order! Bibb or Boston lettuce is much softer as a substitute since it wraps around the meat much easier than iceberg does, but feel free to use iceberg or Romaine if you like the crunch. A sticky teriyaki glaze makes this dish craveable, and the whole thing is low-carb, so there’s that added bonus as well!

Teriyaki Turkey Lettuce Cups

Yield: 15 lettuce cups

Ingredients
1 head of Bibb or Boston lettuce
1 lb. ground turkey (I used Jennie-O brand)
1/2 c. brown sugar
1/4 c. soy sauce
1/4 c. hoisin sauce
1 T. lime juice
1 tsp. sriracha (more if you like heat)
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. ground ginger
1 T. minced dried onion
1/4 c. chopped cashews
1/2 c. grated carrots

Begin with the lettuce: strip off the leaves, keeping them intact in large cup shapes. Then, wash and dry the leaves thoroughly and set them aside. In a small saucepan, whisk together the brown sugar, soy sauce, hoisin, lime juice, sriracha, garlic powder, ginger, and minced onion; bring to a boil. Boil for a minute or two, until the sauce is thick and glaze-like. In the meantime, in a separate skillet brown the ground turkey until fully cooked. Drizzle in as much of the teriyaki sauce as you’d like, to season the turkey. Toss the meat to coat it in the teriyaki sauce. Scoop the seasoned meat into the lettuce cups, and top with carrots and cashews for texture. Devour this tasty and messy goodness immediately so it doesn’t get soggy!

Does anyone else despise iceberg lettuce or am I the only one out there? Shoot me a message on Instagram and let me know!

Keep Connected,

Caroline

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Teriyaki Turkey Lettuce Cups
Serves: 15
 
Ingredients
  • 1 head of Bibb or Boston lettuce
  • 1 lb. ground turkey (I used Jennie-O brand)
  • ½ c. brown sugar
  • ¼ c. soy sauce
  • ¼ c. hoisin sauce
  • 1 T. lime juice
  • 1 T. sriracha (more if you like heat)
  • ½ tsp. garlic powder
  • ½ tsp. ground ginger
  • 1 T. minced dried onion
  • ¼ c. chopped cashews
  • ½ c. grated carrots
Instructions
  1. Begin with the lettuce: strip off the leaves, keeping them intact in large cup shapes.
  2. Then, wash and dry the leaves thoroughly and set them aside.
  3. In a small saucepan, whisk together the brown sugar, soy sauce, hoisin, lime juice, sriracha, garlic powder, ginger, and minced onion; bring to a boil.
  4. Boil for a minute or two, until the sauce is thick and glaze-like.
  5. In the meantime, in a separate skillet brown the ground turkey until fully cooked.
  6. Drizzle in as much of the teriyaki sauce as you'd like, to season the turkey.
  7. Toss the meat to coat it in the teriyaki sauce.
  8. Scoop the seasoned meat into the lettuce cups, and top with carrots and cashews for texture.

Maple Molasses Cookies

Don’t save maple flavors just for fall! One of my coworkers was kind enough to recently gift me with a whole quart of maple syrup, plus there are all kinds of maple tree tapping festivals finishing up around Ohio. The combination of those two things led to the birth of Maple Molasses cookies. Being the Cookie Monster that I am, I cannot resist molasses cookies anytime of year, but the addition of maple syrup puts them over the edge. I hereby banish thee, over-baked, too crispy confections; these gems are soft and chewy, just like a cookie should be. Make sure not to skip rolling them in granulated sugar – you’ll want that textured sugar sparkle on the exterior!

Maple Molasses Cookies

Yield: 30 cookies

Ingredients
2 and 1/4 cups flour
1 and 1/2 tsp. baking soda
2 tsp. ground ginger
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
1/4 tsp. salt
1 and 1/2 sticks butter, softened
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/4 c. maple syrup
1/4 cup molasses
1 egg
2 tsp. vanilla
1/4 cup sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Begin by mixing together the flour, baking soda, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt together in a large bowl until well-combined; set aside. In a second large bowl, beat the butter and brown sugar together with a mixer, until the sugar is incorporated into the butter. Next, using a rubber spatula, fold in the molasses, maple syrup, egg, and vanilla until incorporated.

Using the mixer again, slowly add the dry ingredients from the flour mixture into the molasses mixture until combined. Place the bowl of dough into the fridge for 1 hour.

After 1 hour, remove the dough from the fridge. Roll dough into balls, about 1 1/2 inches in diameter. Place the remaining 1/4 c. sugar in a small bowl. Then, roll each ball in the sugar and place them on cookie sheets greased with cooking spray. Bake for 9-10 minutes or until dough is just set. Allow the cookies to cool completely and then store in a covered container; they stay surprisingly soft and fresh for days!

Have a favorite comfort cookie recipe? I love hearing from you. Send me a message and let me know your go-to dessert source.

Keep Connected,

Caroline

Recipe adapted from Sally’s Baking Addiction: Seriously Soft Molasses Cookies

Looking for more dessert recipes? Try a few of my favorites:

1. Top Secret Chocolate Chip Cookies
2. Sugar Cookie Peach Cobbler
3. Sweet and Salty Cookie Skillets

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Maple Molasses Cookies
Author: 
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 30
 
Don't save maple flavors for fall! One of my coworkers was kind enough to recently gift me with a whole quart of maple syrup, plus there are all kinds of maple tree tapping festivals finishing up around Ohio. The combination of those two things led to the birth of Maple Molasses cookies. Being the Cookie Monster that I am, I cannot resist molasses cookies anytime of year, but the addition of maple syrup puts them over the edge. I hereby banish thee, over-baked, too crispy confections; these gems are soft and chewy, just like a cookie should be. Make sure not to skip rolling them in granulated sugar - you'll want that textured sugar sparkle on the exterior!
Ingredients
  • 2¼ cups flour
  • 1½ tsp. baking soda
  • 2 tsp. ground ginger
  • 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp. nutmeg
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • 1½ sticks butter, softened
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • ¼ c. maple syrup
  • ¼ cup molasses
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tsp. vanilla
  • ¼ cup sugar
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Begin by mixing together the flour, baking soda, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt together in a large bowl until well-combined.
  3. In a second large bowl, beat the butter and brown sugar together with a mixer, until the sugar is incorporated into the butter.
  4. Next, using a rubber spatula, fold in the molasses, maple syrup, egg, and vanilla until incorporated.
  5. Using the mixer again, slowly add the dry ingredients from the flour mixture into the molasses mixture until combined.
  6. Place the bowl of dough into the fridge for 1 hour.
  7. After 1 hour, remove the dough from the fridge.
  8. Roll dough into balls, about 1½ inches in diameter.
  9. Place the remaining ¼ c. sugar in a small bowl.
  10. Then, roll each ball in the sugar and place them on cookie sheets greased with cooking spray.
  11. Bake for 9-10 minutes or until dough is just set.
  12. Allow the cookies to cool completely and then store in a covered container; they stay surprisingly soft and fresh for days!

 

Third Birthday Extravaganza: Highlights, News, + More Truth Talk

How have I been blogging for 3 years already? This fact alone makes me feel pretty elderly. This post will be the 169th here on Columbus Culinary Connection. To be honest, some weeks I’ve been chomping at the bit to get my thoughts down on paper; others, it has been hard to make myself sit down and write. But I’ve loved every minute of connecting with each of you.

To shake things up a little bit, I’m in the process of working on a website redesign, and I can’t wait to share the end result. Hang in there if a link is down during the process or if the site’s formatting isn’t quite right. My husband is uber-talented at teaching himself WordPress, and he created this current website plus the one to come. There will be more pictures, more searchable posts, and more opportunities to connect. One thing I’m most excited about is the Caroline Currently page, which will be a live, ever-changing page of what’s happening now: what I’m craving, what’s trending in town, recipes I can’t stop making, and answers to questions submitted by you.

In honor of this anniversary, I also need to take some time to laugh at myself and how far I’ve come. Specifically, in the area of photography. I don’t have a “real” camera, and so it’s been fun to see how much my skills at capturing food with my cell phone have improved. Practice makes perfect, as has reading books and articles on this subject. I have to credit The Wonder Jam too, for their fun and informative class on honing that prowess. When I first started blogging, I didn’t have an Instagram account (now my biggest social media following by far) and I naively didn’t fathom how essential taking good photographs is to putting out quality posts. Just take a peek at some “then” and “now” comparisons below. I still have a lot of work to do, but some of these early shots are downright laughable. Too many filters, bad lighting and props, and so much blurriness.

Cookie Skillets: before and after

Click here to see the full Cookie Skillets recipe.

101 Beer Kitchen: why did I think would anyone care about the sign?

Read more about 101 Beer Kitchen.

Rockmill Brewery: wasn’t doing this beautiful spot justice

Learn more about Rockmill Brewery here.

Sugar Cookie Peach Cobbler: do I even need to explain this one?

Click here to see the Sugar Cookie Peach Cobbler recipe.

Lava Cakes: note the shadow and salt shakers in the corner…

Lastly, I wanted to share with you the all-time top five posts on the blog. Of course, you all love Fox in the Snow (how could you not) but some were surprising. Who knew so many of you shared my obsession with white BBQ sauce? Here are the 5 most visited blog posts to date:

Thank you as always for following along with my food journey. I’m incredibly humbled when someone takes the time to read content I’ve produced. Please let me know what kinds of posts you love best, so I can focus on those topics this year. Or shoot me a message and just say hi!

Keep Connected,

Caroline

Caprese Prosciutto Cups

Caprese Prosciutto Cups

I’m crazy for Caprese! I love Caprese sandwiches, Caprese kebobs, Caprese pizza, salad, you name it. That got a little too Bubba Gump shrimp, but you get the point. I’m always looking for a new way to devour the tomato, basil, and cheese combo, so for Christmas this year I developed this bite-sized version. Minimal effort is required, but this fancy-looking appetizer is a sure-fire hit.

Caprese Prosciutto Cups

Yield: 24 mini cups

Ingredients

2 packages prosciutto, 12 slices
1 pint cherry tomatoes
1 container mini mozzarella balls
1 T. basil, chopped
3 T. balsamic vinegar
2 T. olive oil
Salt and pepper for seasoning

Begin by preheating the oven to 375 degrees. Next, separate the prosciutto slices and cut each in half crosswise to create 24 squares. Tuck each slice into the holes of a mini muffin tin, pressing the edges as high up on the sides of the holes as possible to create a cup shape. The prosciutto will shrink considerably in the oven. Bake the prosciutto shells for 7-9 minutes until firm and crispy. Place them on paper towels to drain any excess grease.

While the prosciutto is baking, slice the mozzarella balls and cherry tomatoes in half. After the prosciutto cups are completely cooled, fill each prosciutto cup with a mozzarella half and a tomato half. Drizzle the oil and the balsamic over each of the cups, then sprinkle on basil, salt, and pepper to taste.

Do you have a go-to Caprese recipe? Share a link with your favorite one in the comments below!

Keep Connected,

Caroline

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Caprese Prosciutto Cups
Author: 
Recipe type: Appetizer
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 24
 
Ingredients
  • 2 packages prosciutto, 12 slices
  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes
  • 1 container mini mozzarella balls
  • 1 T. basil, chopped
  • 3 T. balsamic vinegar
  • 2 T. olive oil
  • Salt and pepper for seasoning
Instructions
  1. Begin by preheating the oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Next, separate the prosciutto slices and cut each in half crosswise to create 24 squares.
  3. Tuck each slice into the holes of a mini muffin tin, pressing the edges as high up on the sides off the holes as possible to create a cup shape. The prosciutto will shrink considerably in the oven.
  4. Bake the prosciutto shells for 7-9 minutes until firm and crispy.
  5. Place them on paper towels to drain any excess grease.
  6. While the prosciutto is baking, slice the mozzarella balls and cherry tomatoes in half.
  7. After the prosciutto cups are completely cooled, fill each prosciutto cup with a mozzarella half and a tomato half.
  8. Drizzle the oil and the balsamic over each of the cups, then sprinkle on basil, salt, and pepper to taste.

 

Mistletoe Mimosas

On the twelfth day of Christmas my true love gave to me…a cheery cocktail with sparkling cranberry? These merry mimosas are perfect for Christmas brunch and holiday parties, and are just as tasty as they are festive. This drink comes together in just a few minutes, so you’ll have plenty of extra time to enjoy gift-wrapping and cookie-baking.

Mistletoe Mimosas

 

Yield: 6 cocktails

Ingredients:

1 bottle of your favorite champagne
7 oz. cranberry juice
3 oz. orange liqueur (such as Cointreau or Grand Marnier)
Rosemary springs and fresh cranberries, to garnish
Sugar or sprinkles for rimming glass

Start by rimming glasses. Place sugar or sprinkles on a saucer or shallow dish. Pour 1 oz. of cranberry juice in a small bowl, and dip the rim of the champagne flute in the juice. Continue to hold the glass upside down, then swirl the edge of the flute in the sugar or sprinkles to coat the rim of the glass.

In each of the six rimmed champagne flutes, pour 1/2 oz. of the orange liqueur in the bottom. Next, add 1 oz. of cranberry juice to each flute. Fill the remainder of each glass with champagne. Float a rosemary spring in the top of each cocktail and plop a few cranberries in to garnish.

 

Cheers to the new year!

Keep Connected,

Caroline

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Mistletoe Mimosas
 
Ingredients
  • 1 bottle of your favorite champagne
  • 7 oz. cranberry juice
  • 3 oz. orange liqueur (such as Cointreau or Grand Marnier)
  • Rosemary springs and fresh cranberries, to garnish
  • Sugar or sprinkles for rimming glass
Instructions
  1. Start by rimming glasses.
  2. Place sugar or sprinkles on a saucer or shallow dish.
  3. Pour 1 oz. of cranberry juice in a small bowl, and dip the rim of the champagne flute in the juice.
  4. Continue to hold the glass upside down, then swirl the edge of the flute in the sugar or sprinkles to coat the rim of the glass.
  5. In each of the six rimmed champagne flutes, pour ½ oz. of the orange liqueur in the bottom.
  6. Next, add 1 oz. of cranberry juice to each flute.
  7. Fill the remainder of each glass with champagne.
  8. Float a rosemary spring in the top of each cocktail and plop a few cranberries in as well to garnish.

 

Apple Pie French Toast

When I opt for a sweet brunch over a savory one, French toast is one of my go-to selections. But who has time to make French toast through the week? Not this girl. So discovering overnight French toast in casserole form has been a breakfast lifesaver. This recipe is almost like a bread pudding (with syrup as the topping) and the addition of a favorite fall flavor: apple pie. Top this creation with some local Middle West Spirits bourbon barrel-aged maple syrup for an extra tasty treat.

Apple Pie French Toast

Yield: 6 servings

Ingredients:

1 loaf of thickly sliced cinnamon bread (I use Great Harvest cinnamon chip, but one of the thick-cut Pepperidge Farm varieties will work well too)
1/2 c. brown sugar
6 eggs
2 c. milk (i used 2%)
1/2 c. heavy cream
1 tsp. vanilla
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp salt
1 20 oz. can of apple pie filling
Optional: 2/3 c. salted caramel or butterscotch chips (I found the caramel ones at Kroger)
Syrup, for topping

Apple Pie French Toast

Spray a 9 x 13 casserole dish with cooking spray and preheat oven to 400 degrees. Next, tear or cut bread slices into 1 inch chunks and set aside. In a large bowl, whisk together the sugar, eggs, milk, cream, vanilla, cinnamon, and salt. Then fold in the apple pie filling to the egg mixture. Spread bread cubes into casserole dish in an even layer and pour egg mixture over top, making sure to distribute apple chunks evenly throughout dish. If desired, top the casserole with the butterscotch or caramel chips for a caramel apple twist. Bake for 40-45 minutes, or until the top of the casserole is golden and center is set. Cover casserole with foil during baking if the top begins to brown too much.

Apple Pie Overnight French Toast

Refrigerate the cooled, baked casserole. The next morning, cut into squares and microwave individually for a decadent breakfast. Add a syrup drizzle for a meal that even your most autumn-obsessed friend will enjoy!

Keep Connected,

Caroline

Apple Pie French Toast
Author: 
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 6
 
Ingredients
  • 1 loaf of thickly  sliced cinnamon bread
  • ½ c. brown sugar
  • 6 eggs
  • 2 c. milk (i used 2%)
  • ½ c. heavy cream
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 1 20 oz. can of apple pie filling
  • Optional: ⅔ c. salted caramel or butterscotch chips
  • Syrup, for topping
Instructions
  1. Spray a 9 x 13 casserole dish with cooking spray and preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Next, tear or cut bread slices into 1 inch chunks and set aside.
  3. In a large bowl, whisk together the sugar, eggs, milk, cream, vanilla, cinnamon, and salt.
  4. Then fold in the apple pie filling to egg mixture.
  5. Spread bread cubes into casserole dish in an even layer and pour egg mixture over top, making sure to distribute apple chunks evenly throughout dish.
  6. If desired, top the casserole with the butterscotch or caramel chips for a caramel apple twist.
  7. Bake for 40-45 minutes, or until the top of the casserole is golden and center is set.
  8. Cover casserole with foil during baking if top begins to brown too much.
  9. Refrigerate the cooled, baked casserole.
  10. The next morning, cut into squares and microwave individually for a decadent breakfast.
  11. Add a syrup drizzle for a meal that even your most autumn-obsessed friend will enjoy!

 

Brie Burgers with Bacon-Date Aioli

At my house, summer equals grilling multiple times a week. Burgers are especially easy to pull together for a weeknight meal, so I had to add a burger recipe to this collection. Shout out to one of my favorite burgers in town, the One Red Door burger at Flip Side, as the inspiration for this dish. This concoction hits all the notes you want with a burger: cheesy, salty, crunchy, juicy, and just a dash of sweet. The bacon-date aioli will make you swoon, and why aren’t more restaurants using brie on their burgers? It melts beautifully and pairs with so many garnishes. I used the leftover aioli to make the best grilled cheese ever, so save a little extra if you can manage it. I can also think of about a dozen more things I’d like to slather the bacon spread on – it’s that mouthwatering!

I used Jennie-O’s turkey burgers for the recipe, since if the burger is healthier, you can pile on more toppings. Also, because the patties are pre-seasoned and can be grilled straight from frozen, no thawing or prep is required. Get the scoop below:

Brie Burgers with Bacon-Date Aioli

Yield: 6 large burgers

Ingredients:

For the aioli:
10 pitted dates, I used Medjool dates
5 slices bacon, cooked until crispy
3/4 c. mayo

For the burgers:
1 c. fresh arugula
6-8 oz. brie cheese, sliced
1/3 c. French’s Crispy Fried Onions (you know, the kind that goes on green bean casserole)
6 cooked patties of your favorite burger recipe or Jennie-O turkey burgers
6 burger buns, toasted

Start by making the aioli. Combine all ingredients in a food processor, blending until well-incorporated. Refrigerate and set aside to assemble burgers.

Cook your burgers according to package or recipe instructions. Right before the burgers are finished cooking, place strips of brie cheese on top so the cheese is melted; this helps the cheese act as the glue for assembly. Place cooked patties on bottom burger bun. Top burger with fried onions, then arugula. Smear desired amount of aioli on top bun, then sandwich together the two burger halves and devour.

Get your summer grilling on, and find out more about Jennie-O frozen turkey burgers here: https://www.jennieo.com/products/collection/22-burgers.

Keep Connected,

Caroline

Disclosure: Jennie-O sent me these burgers to try. Any opinions expressed within this post are my own unbiased views.

Brie Burgers with Bacon-Date Aioli
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 6
 
Ingredients
For the aioli:
  • 10 pitted dates, I used Medjool dates
  • 5 slices bacon, cooked until crispy
  • ¾ c. mayo
For the burgers:
  • 1 c. fresh arugula
  • 6-8 oz. brie cheese, sliced
  • ⅓ c. French's Crispy Fried Onions (you know, the kind that goes on green bean casserole)
  • 6 cooked patties of your favorite burger recipe or Jennie-O turkey burgers
  • 6 burger buns, toasted
Instructions
  1. Start by making the aioli. Combine all ingredients in a food processor, blending until well-incorporated.
  2. Refrigerate and set aside to assemble burgers.
  3. Cook your burgers according to package or recipe instructions.
  4. Right before the burgers are finished cooking, place strips of brie cheese on top so the cheese is melted.
  5. Place cooked patties on bottom burger bun. Top burger with fried onions, then arugula.
  6. Smear desired amount of aioli on top bun, then sandwich together the two burger halves and devour.

 

Balsamic Roasted Grape Pizza

Balsamic Roasted Grape Pizza

My current craving as summer approaches: fruit on savory pizza. Fruit pizza for dessert (you know the one, with the cream cheese layer and sugar cookie crust) is divine, but I’m fancying fruit this season as a topping for a dinner pizza. Figs, dates, and apples are all great additions to flatbreads to add sweetness and texture, but grapes are great because they retain their juice even after roasting. This pizza is a snap to assemble and will disappear in a snap too. Grilling the crust would also be tasty for a quick meal, or cut the pie into bite size pieces for a party appetizer.

Roasted Grape Pizza

Yield: 4 mini pizzas

Ingredients:

For the grapes:
1 1/2 c. seedless red grapes
3 T. balsamic vinegar
3 T. olive oil

For the pizza:
4 – 8 inch prepared pizza crusts (I used pre-packaged mini crusts from Kroger, but feel free to make your own or buy the kind in the tube and roll them out)
1 c. ricotta cheese, divided into 4 portions
2 T. olive oil
2 T. chopped fresh basil
3 T. chopped fresh chives
4 cloves garlic, chopped
1/2 c. mozzarella
1/4 c. grated Parmesan

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. On a rimmed baking sheet sprayed with cooking spray, spread out grapes. Drizzle on oil and vinegar, toss grapes in mixture to coat. Season with salt and pepper. Roast the grapes for 10-15 minutes until the skins are just beginning to burst, stirring once halfway through. Allow the grapes to cool.

Balsamic Roasted Grape Pizza

On each pre-baked crust, spread an even layer of the divided ricotta. Drizzle the oil atop the ricotta layer and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Next add the mozzarella and Parmesan, then top the cheeses with the garlic and the herbs. Finally distribute the grapes in an even layer, dividing them between the 4 pizzas. Bake the mini pizzas for 15 minutes in the 425 degree oven, until cheese is melted. Cut and serve!

I know grapes might sound crazy, but they add a stellar pop of sweetness. Shovel in every bite and let me know when you try the recipe; find my social channels here: Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

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Caroline

Balsamic Roasted Grape Pizza
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Prep time: 
Cook time: 
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Serves: 4
 
Ingredients
For the grapes:
  • 1½ c. seedless red grapes
  • 3 T. balsamic vinegar
  • 3 T. olive oil
For the pizza:
  • 4 - 8 inch prepared pizza crusts (I used pre-packaged mini crusts from Kroger, but feel free to make your own or buy the kind in the tube and roll them out)
  • 1 c. ricotta cheese, divided into 4 portions
  • 2 T. olive oil
  • 2 T. chopped fresh basil
  • 3 T. chopped fresh chives
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • ½ c. mozzarella
  • ¼ c. grated Parmesan
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
  2. On a rimmed baked sheet sprayed with cooking spray, spread out grapes.
  3. Drizzle on oil and vinegar, toss grapes in mixture to coat.
  4. Season with salt and pepper.
  5. Roast the grapes for 10-15 minutes until the skins just beginning to burst, stirring once halfway through.
  6. Allow the grapes to cool.
  7. On each pre-baked crust, spread an even layer of the divided ricotta.
  8. Drizzle the oil atop the ricotta layer and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
  9. Next add the mozzarella and Parmesan, then top the cheeses with the garlic and the herbs.
  10. Finally distribute the grapes in an even layer, dividing them between the 4 pizzas.
  11. Bake the mini pizzas for 15 minutes in the 425 degree oven, until cheese is melted. Cut and serve!