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Restaurant Quality Dining at Home

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Ricotta Bruschetta
Sparkling Sangria Tea
Super-Moist Chocolate Mayo Cake

(Family Features) - Whether you are a kitchen-challenged cook or seasoned pro, it's easy to create a memorable dining experience in your very own home - complete with a delicious three-course meal. With a few store-bought staples, you can prepare dinner for two in less time than it takes to travel to the local eatery. A few minutes in the kitchen can add up to more time dishing over dinner with your special someone.

Take a trip to Italy without ever leaving home! You can do it yourself and make it look like you've been classically-trained in Tuscany. Here are some tips to turn your dining room into your new favorite Italian restaurant.

  • Start your flavor trip to Italy with Ricotta Bruschetta. It's easier to make than you think when you can use a store-bought staple such as Bertolli premium pasta sauce.
  • It is easy to prepare an Italian-inspired menu with Bertolli Frozen Chicken Florentine & Farfalle. Grilled chicken, tender spinach and al dente farfalle pasta are prepared in a luscious sauce made with white wine and Parmesan cheese. Ten minutes in the kitchen can bring you authentic Italian cuisine from 10 hours away. And for those who have a bit more time on their hands, try Hellmann's or Best Foods Parmesan Crusted Chicken.
  • Here's a secret. That same Hellmann's or Best Foods can be used in a five-ingredient cake that will put the corner bakery to shame. The Super-Moist Chocolate Mayo Cake is a perfect ending to any dinner at home.
  • Dress up your meal with a drink. Skip the soda and sip your own stay-at-home signature mocktail. A Sparkling Sangria Tea is a great complement to any meal.
  • Food tastes better by candlelight. Turn your dining room into a dining destination by lighting some candles, breaking out the fancy tablecloths and unplugging the phone.

 For these and more recipes, visit MakingLifeBetter.com.

Ricotta Bruschetta

Ingredients
  • 1 loaf Italian bread, cut diagonally into 1/2-inch-thick slices
  • 1 clove garlic, halved
  • 1/3 cup Bertolli Classico Olive Oil
  • 1 package Bertolli Premium Sun Ripened Tomato & Olive Pasta Sauce
  • 1 container (15 ounces) ricotta cheese
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil leaves

Preparation
    1. Preheat oven to 425°F.
    2. Arrange bread on baking sheet. Evenly rub with garlic, then brush with Olive Oil. Bake 10 minutes or until golden. Evenly spread Pasta Sauce on bread, then top with cheese. Bake 5 minutes or until cheese is golden. Sprinkle with basil.

Preparation Time
10 minutes

Cook Time
15 minutes

Serves
Makes about 20 pieces

Sparkling Sangria Tea

Description
Dress up your meal with a drink. Skip the soda and sip your own stay-at-home signature mocktail. A Sparkling Sangria Tea is a great complement to any meal.

Ingredients
  • 3 cups boiling water
  • 2 Lipton Family Size Tea Bags or 5 Lipton Cup Size Tea Bags
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 2 cups chilled purple grape juice
  • 1 medium orange, sliced
  • 1 medium lemon, sliced
  • 1 medium lime, sliced
  • Chilled club soda

Preparation
    1. In teapot, pour boiling water over Tea Bags; cover and brew 5 minutes. Remove Tea Bags and squeeze; stir in sugar and cool.
    2. In large pitcher, combine tea with remaining ingredients except soda; chill at least 2 hours. Just before serving, add a splash of soda. Pour into ice-filled glasses and garnish, if desired, with additional orange, lemon and lime slices.

Preparation Time
15 minutes

Chill Time
2 hours

Serves
Makes 8 servings

Super-Moist Chocolate Mayo Cake

Description
This five-ingredient cake will put the corner bakery to shame. The Super-Moist Chocolate Mayo Cake is a perfect ending to any dinner at home.

Ingredients
  • 1 box (18 ounces) chocolate cake mix
  • 1 cup Hellmann's or Best Foods Real Mayonnaise
  • 1 cup water
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon (optional)

Preparation
    1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease and lightly flour two 9-inch round cake pans*; set aside.
    2. Beat cake mix, Mayonnaise, water, eggs and cinnamon 30 seconds in large bowl, with electric mixer on low speed. Beat on medium speed, scraping sides occasionally, 2 minutes. Pour batter into prepared pans.
    3. Bake 30 minutes or until toothpick inserted in centers comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes on wire rack; remove from pans and cool completely. Sprinkle, if desired, with confectioner's sugar or fill and frost.

Preparation Time
5 minutes

Cook Time
30 minutes

Notes, Tips & Suggestions
*Or, prepare cake mix as above in 13 x 9-inch baking pan and bake 40 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

SOURCE: Unilever Brands


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