(Family Features) Settling in for an afternoon of gridiron action calls for football food from dips and appetizers to full-blown feasts. Whether you’re a diehard fan, casual observer or just there for the game time grub, a full day of “homegating” requires flavorful eats to refuel the crowd.
One of the easiest ways to take your menu from benchwarmer to superstar status is to add foods from one of the country’s top authentic Mexican food brands, Cacique, to your playbook. For example, flavor-packed, heaping Cheesy Chorizo Nachos can score a touchdown at your gathering, even among the pickiest of fans. When the game is on the line, call on this dish to keep your team satisfied from kickoff to the final whistle.
Made with crumbly, creamy, pleasantly milky queso fresco; authentic real cheese queso dip that’s ready in minutes; robust, spicy pork chorizo; fresh-tasting Crema Mexicana; and small-batch homestyle salsa, this shareable dish can feed a houseful of hungry fans. Ready in less than an hour, it’s a perfect solution for pregame baking so it’s ready just before the coin toss.
To find more game day recipes, visit CaciqueInc.com.
Cheesy Chorizo Nachos
- 1 package Cacique Pork Chorizo
- 1 package Cacique Queso Blanco Queso Dip
- 1 can (15 ounces) refried beans
- 2 tablespoons water, plus additional, if necessary
- 1 bag (12 ounces) tortilla chips
- 1 package Cacique Ranchero Queso Fresco
- 1/2 cup Cacique Crema Mexicana
- 1 large jalapeno, sliced thin
- 2 radishes, sliced thin
- fresh cilantro leaves, for garnish
- guacamole, for serving
- Cacique Mild Homestyle Salsa, for serving
- In large nonstick skillet or well-seasoned cast-iron pan over medium-low heat, cook pork chorizo, using spoon to break it up. Stir regularly until completely warmed through and deep brown, scraping crispy bits from bottom of pan.
- Microwave queso dip 2-3 minutes until heated through.
- In medium bowl, thin refried beans with water. Beans should be thick but nearly pourable; add additional water 1 tablespoon at a time, if necessary.
- Heat oven to 350 F.
- To assemble nachos, add half the tortilla chips to 13-by-9-inch rectangular baking dish. Use spoon to drizzle half the queso dip and half the refried beans evenly over chips, distributing as evenly as possible. Sprinkle with half the crumbled queso fresco. Repeat with remaining chips, queso dip, beans and crumbled queso fresco. Bake 5-8 minutes until crumbled queso fresco softens and queso dip is creamy.
- Remove from oven then drizzle with crema Mexicana and scatter pork chorizo over top. Garnish with sliced jalapenos, radishes and fresh cilantro. Serve with guacamole and salsa.
(Family Features) Whipping up a fresh cooked meal is one of the true joys of summer, especially when grilled grub is paired with tantalizing sides and tempting desserts.
Spice things up with Mexican Beef Sliders with Jalapeno Salsa and Avocado Cream coupled with a side like Roasted Potatoes then cap off a filling meal with these sweet and decadent Strawberry Cream Cheese Tartlets. If you’re looking for ways to mix meat and veggies all at once, these ideas for kebabs are a surefire way to please a variety of palates.
Find more summer meal ideas at Culinary.net.
Cook Up Kebabs
As one of the most versatile main courses that can be grilled, kebabs offer nearly endless opportunities for customization. From protein to veggies, soaked wooden skewers can be loaded with just about any favorite flavors before hitting the grates. Consider these options for kicking your kebabs up a notch:
- Steak, cut into chunks
- Chicken, cut into chunks
- Bratwurst or sausage, cut into slices
- Ground beef, shaped into balls
- Salmon, cut into chunks
- Bacon, cut into small pieces
- Sliced onions
- Sliced bell peppers
- Sliced jalapenos
- Sliced mushrooms
- Sliced cucumbers
- Cherry tomatoes
Summer Sliders with a Spicy Kick
Summer calls for firing up the grill for a fresh-cooked meal, and sliders are an ideal way to enjoy a downsized version of a warm weather favorite.
These Mexican Beef Sliders with Jalapeno Salsa and Avocado Cream are perfect for summer with their spicy kick of salsa and bright, cooling cream. Made with grass-fed beef from New Zealand, where the animals are allowed to roam and graze freely over lush green hills and pastures year-round, the mini burgers boast a lean, finely textured meat that tastes just as nature intended.
Find more tasty summer recipes at beefandlambnz.com.
Mexican Beef Sliders with Jalapeno Salsa and Avocado Cream
Recipe courtesy of Beef + Lamb New Zealand
Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 15 minutes
- 1 1/3 pounds lean New Zealand grass-fed ground beef
- 1 clove garlic, crushed
- 1 medium onion, grated or finely chopped
- 1 egg, lightly beaten
- 3/4 cup red kidney beans, rinsed and drained
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 3 teaspoons dried oregano, chopped
- 2 teaspoons mild smoked paprika
- 2 teaspoons ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
- salt, to taste
- pepper, to taste
- olive oil
- 1 cup cucumber, thinly sliced into long ribbons
- 3/4 cup fresh cilantro leaves, chopped
- 1 red onion, finely sliced
- 1/2 cup pickled jalapenos, finely chopped
- salt, to taste
- pepper, to taste
- olive oil
- lime juice
- 1 avocado, mashed
- 1/2 cup sour cream
- 1 lime, juice and zest only
- salt, to taste
- pepper, to taste
- 8-12 slider buns, halved
- 2-3 cobs sweet corn, cooked and sliced into shards
- 8-12 small bamboo skewers
- To make patties: In bowl, combine beef, garlic, onion, egg, kidney beans, tomato paste, oregano, paprika, cumin, coriander, Parmesan cheese, salt, to taste, and pepper, to taste. Shape into 8-12 small patties. Cover and refrigerate 15 minutes.
- Heat grill or frying pan to medium heat.
- Brush patties with oil on both sides. Cook 2-3 minutes on each side, turning once to brown both sides evenly, until cooked through.
- To make Jalapeno Salsa: In bowl, combine cucumber, cilantro, onion and jalapenos; season with salt and pepper, to taste. Drizzle with olive oil and lime juice.
- To make Avocado Cream: In bowl, combine avocado, sour cream, lime juice and lime zest; season with salt and pepper, to taste.
- Spread Avocado Cream on bottom buns and place patties on top. Top patties with Jalapeno Salsa, corn and top buns. Press down gently and poke in skewers to secure sliders.
A Sweet Summer Treat
Sweet flavors and warm weather go hand-in-hand, and many summer occasions and get-togethers call for dessert. Take advantage of warm weather favorites like strawberries and raspberries with these Strawberry Cream Cheese Tartlets.
Made using the best berries nature can provide, these bite-size tartlets feature a graham cracker crust base and an indulgent cream cheese filling flavored with sliced strawberries, honey and lemon topped with Well•Pict’s sweet, juicy strawberries and raspberries, which come fresh in clamshell packaging made from 70% recycled water bottles.
Find more sweet recipes that can bring a smile to your loved ones’ faces at wellpict.com/recipe.
Strawberry Cream Cheese Tartlets
Makes: 24 tartlets (4 ounces each)
- 1/2 cup water
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 3 tablespoons lemon zest
- 2 tablespoons gelatin
- 4 cups Well•Pict Strawberries, sliced, divided
- 1/3 cup honey
- 2 packages (8 ounces each) cream cheese
- 1/2 cup sour cream
- 1 cup ice cubes
- 2 cups graham cracker crumbs
- 1/2 cup melted butter
- 1 cup Well•Pict Strawberries, rinsed, for garnish
- 1 cup Well•Pict Raspberries, rinsed, for garnish
- In blender, mix water, lemon juice, lemon zest and gelatin until frothy.
- Add 2 cups strawberries and honey; blend until smooth. Pour into bowl and chill mix 15 minutes.
- In blender, mix cream cheese, sour cream and ice cubes while incorporating strawberry mixture. Mix in remaining strawberries.
- In blender or food processor, mix graham crackers and melted butter to crumb consistency. Lightly grease two medium muffin pans and pack graham cracker mixture at bottom of each opening. Pour strawberry mixture over graham cracker mixture and chill until set. Gently pull tartlets from muffin tins and place on serving tray. Garnish with strawberries and raspberries.
Roasted and Ready to Serve
Summer meals centered around grilled fare call for a complementary pairing that completes the classic profile of warm weather food. Using a versatile vegetable like potatoes allows you to think up different methods of cooking for a new flavor each time.
While you’re focused on the main dish being grilled, these Roasted Potatoes can bake away indoors for a simple side that requires little attention.
Find more health resources at usda.gov.
Recipe courtesy of “A Harvest of Recipes with USDA Foods”
- 1 pound potatoes, chopped into 1-inch cubes
- 1/2 cup onion, chopped into 1-inch cubes
- 1/2 cup green pepper, chopped into 1-inch cubes
- 1 teaspoon garlic, finely chopped
- 1 teaspoon vegetable oil
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 1 tablespoon parsley, finely chopped
- 1/2 teaspoon paprika
- Preheat oven to 350° F.
- In medium bowl, mix potatoes, onions, green peppers and garlic.
- Add vegetable oil, salt, pepper, parsley and paprika. Mix well.
- Cover bowl and refrigerate 15 minutes.
- Spread potato mixture evenly on cookie sheet. Bake about 35 minutes.
Photos courtesy of Getty Images (Kebabs and Roasted Potatoes)
(Family Features) Watermelon rinds make for more than just attractive containers for serving cold dishes and beverages. The rind can also be used in creative, edible ways and is good for your heart.
Watermelon, both the flesh and the rind, is a good source of a compound called citrulline, an amino acid that raises levels of arginine in the blood, which in turn helps maintain blood flow, healthy blood vessels and heart health.
Whether you’re eating for good health or good taste (or both), you can use the rind to make pickles and relishes, grate into salads and slaws, toss into stir-fry and add to smoothies and juice. The key to chowing down on watermelon rind is knowing how to prepare it. These three preparation methods can help you put that rind to good use:
Pickled: Watermelon rind is similar to a cucumber, which is why it’s no surprise that pickled watermelon rind is a popular option.
Juiced: Most people know you can enjoy juice from red flesh of the melon, but you can juice the rind, too. Just like the watermelon flesh, the rind is loaded with water and nutrients.
Stir-Fried: When it’s cut up, watermelon rind is just like a vegetable, which means it can be tossed in a pan and stir-fried right alongside broccoli and carrots.
Look for more creative ways to use your watermelon rind at watermelon.org.
Watermelon Rind Pickles
- 4 cups water
- 1 tablespoon coarse salt
- 2 cups peeled watermelon rind, cut into 1-1/2-by-2-inch pieces (leave thin layer of pink)
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1 allspice berry
- 1/2 cup cider vinegar
- 4 peppercorns
- 4 whole cloves
- 1/2 teaspoon pickling spice
- 1 long slice of fresh gingerroot
- 1/4 teaspoon celery seeds
- In large pot over medium-high heat, bring water and salt to boil. Add rind pieces and boil until tender, about 5 minutes. Strain. Transfer rinds to large metal bowl.
- In saucepan, combine watermelon rind, sugar, berries, vinegar, peppercorns, cloves, pickling spice, gingerroot and celery seeds. Bring to boil over medium-high heat, stirring until sugar dissolves. Simmer 15 minutes until slightly reduced. Pour over watermelon rinds in bowl. Place plate over top to keep rinds submerged in liquid.
- Cover and refrigerate 1 day. Transfer to glass jar and keep sealed in refrigerator up to 2 weeks.
Watermelon Rind Stir-Fry
- 2 teaspoons sesame oil
- 2 cups watermelon rind, julienned (white part only, from about 1/2 of seedless watermelon)
- 1 cup julienned carrots
- 1/2 cup chives, cut into 3-inch pieces
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon fish sauce
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 piece (about 1 inch) ginger, minced
- 1/2 cup fresh basil leaves, torn
- 1/4 cup cilantro leaves
- 1/4 cup mint leaves
- crushed red pepper flakes (optional)
- In wok over high heat, heat sesame oil. Add watermelon rind and carrots and fry, stirring constantly, 1-2 minutes. Let sit over high heat 1 additional minute without stirring. Add chives and stir to combine.
- In small bowl, whisk together honey, soy sauce, fish sauce, garlic and ginger. Pour sauce over watermelon rind and cook, stirring, 30 seconds-1 minute, until fragrant.
- Transfer to serving dish. Add basil, cilantro and mint, tossing to combine. Sprinkle with red pepper flakes, if desired, and serve.