Wish Upon A Dish

January 30, 2015

BBQ Cornmeal Cheese Flatbreads ♥ Healthier Snacks with Cabot Cheese Recipe Challenge #AD

 

When Cabot Creamery challenged Recipe ReDux members to create healthier and balanced snacks, whether finger foods or hearty apps, or our favorite “big game” or red carpet eats, I immediately wrote this idea on a pad.

Not many know that Cabot Creamery is a family-farmer owned cooperative of more than 1200 farms located throughout New England and New York and one-hundred (100) percent of Cabot’s profits go back to their farmers. It's such a pleasure to use their cheeses and finally got the chance to test a cheesy flatbread recipe with their famous Vermont cheese .

"I received free samples of Cabot Cheese mentioned in this post. By posting this recipe I am entering a recipe challenge sponsored by Cabot Creamery and am eligible to win prizes. I was not additionally compensated for my time."


This was not any standard flatbread, not one with herbs or spices but I incorporated cheese and cornmeal into the dough. Less flour, better glucose, happy diabetics.
Took me two tries to get it right and what I ended up with, will forever be the dough I make from now on. 
Traditional flatbread uses a smidgen if any, yeast, because it's called a "flat" "bread" for a reason.
Makes it perfect for someone just not ready to work with yeast.
In this house St. Louis-style crispy crust is the one of choice.


Three other great things about this dough.
1. You can mix it in a bowl with a wooden spoon, your processor or your stand mixer in 5 minutes.
2. It only needs to rest for 30 minutes so dinner is on the table in under an hour.
3. You toast it in a skillet or flat griddle.
4. It freezes exceptionally well, and
5. It is the easiest dough to roll out.

OK, maybe 5 great reasons.


One batch makes 4 (6x8-inch) rectangles or one large sheet pan size.
You can make a half appetizer size like for a kids party and let them dress their own, or you can make it on a round pizza pan and cut out slices.
It's all good.

In my neck of the woods (the Diabetic community), a dough made with less white flour and more fiber is so much healthier and fit right into the theme of this challenge.
If a lower fat dairy is something you are looking for, Cabot also makes excellent low-fat cheeses that are as good as their full-fat versions and I have had hands-on experience. So while this recipe uses a full fat cheese, a low fat one will work just as well.

I like that this is a thin crust and the full flavored toppings make it easier to use less. There is nothing unhealthy about this recipe.



Today's market's sell all kinds of BBQ meats from various manufacturers. I always have homemade pulled pork in my freezer, but have sampled a few from others. A BBQ brisket or pork shoulder is traditional but there are smoked turkey and duck legs that also work well.
I recommend a spicy BBQ sauce, either homemade or bottled. A small amount is all you need but can serve a bowl on the side.


I really hope you try this recipe. I can only tell you how we love it in this house. If you wonder why the cheese in the crust is important, if you were to take a bite of just the crust, you will think you are eating a cheese cracker.


The last of five toppings is caramelized onions. I make mine in the slow cooker. Just check online for the directions. That's it, 5 ingredients - dough, meat, sauce, onions and cheese.


 Let's get cooking.....
 
BBQ Cornmeal Cheese Flatbread
makes 1 large dough
* 1 cup AP flour
* 1 cup masa harina or finely ground yellow cornmeal
* 2 ounces Cabot Pepper Jack cheese, finely shredded
* 4 ounces Cabot Aged Cheddar, finely shredded
* 1 teaspoon baking powder
* 3/4 cup cold water

Toppings:
BBQ Meat (Pulled beef, pork, turkey or duck legs), about 1 1/2 cups
Grated Cabot Vermont Sharp Cheddar Cheese, about 1/2 cup
1 large sweet onion, caramelized
BBQ Sauce, about 1/2 cup

1. Add grated cheeses to flours, stir to coat and separate. Add baking powder and salt and mix using the paddle attachment on a stand up mixer, the plastic blade in a processor or a wooden spoon. Cover the dough with a towel and allow it to rest for at least 30 minutes. This gives the cornmeal time to soften. Can also be refrigerated and brought to room temp 30 minutes before using, or frozen wrapped in double plastic for up to 1 month.
This is a very workable dough and requires minimal flouring of the work board.
2. Divide the dough into 4 (16x12") to 8 (6x8") pieces and roll to a 1/4" thickness.
3. Heat a cast iron skillet until the pan is screaming hot. Brush any flour off each piece or it will burn.
Cook each side about 1 minute.
4. Layer the meat, onions, cheese and sauce. Bake at 425° for 15 minutes or until the cheese melts.


   

   
   

January 29, 2015

Carotene Poutine ♥ Healthier Snacks with Cabot Cheese Recipe Challenge #AD


Poutine:
A Quebec (or French-Canadian) staple, a dish of homemade french fries topped with white cheddar cheese curds and beef gravy. Generally served in a Styrofoam container or carton and it is the hottest thing to come off a food truck.
I took liberties and made poutine portable, requiring no utensils. A perfect snack watching TV, like say the Super Bowl or Oscars.

These couldn't be any easier to make because you will have to make a ton, trust me.

Cabot Creamery challenged Recipe ReDux members to create healthier and balanced snacks. From finger foods to hearty apps, lighten up your favorite “big game” or red carpet eats for entertaining.
Cabot Creamery is a family-farmer owned cooperative of more than 1200 farms located throughout New England and New York. One-hundred (100) percent of Cabot’s profits go back to their farmers. - Cheddar cheese is a protein-rich snack and naturally lactose free.

"I received free samples of Cabot Cheese mentioned in this post. By posting this recipe I am entering a recipe challenge sponsored by Cabot Creamery and am eligible to win prizes. I was not additionally compensated for my time."


I am extremely happy with the final presentation. This is something I will be making many times over, even after football season ends.

A combination of sweet potatoes, chicken sausage and fat-free gravy make this healthier without sacrificing any of the flavors that have made this the No.1 dish in Canada.

Why not be the first on your block to introduce your friends to the next big craze in snack form, even though it feels too lowbrow to be a French favorite.

Once I cracked the code on plugging the holes to keep the gravy from dripping, the rest was food nirvana. Extremely easy to make, you can keep extra sheet pans of the waffle chips in a warming oven until you need to restock the table and the only cooking involved was to saute the chicken sausage and gravy.


The cheese can be chopped into crumbles in the processor using the grind or pulse button (around 10 pulses). I cut very cold cheese into small cubes and then toss them in flour. It stops the cheese from sticking together and you get big (bottom pic) and little pebbles (top pic).

The smaller ones are the plaster that plugs up the holes in the waffle chips. It also doesn't hurt that it makes them cheesier. The larger crumbs are our curds. These are the one that get sprinkled when the waffle chips are out of the oven. These need to stick to the chips without melting.

You should have twice as many small ones as large, so allow about 5 ounces for small crumbs and 3 ounces of large. It's funny how each time I chopped a batch, the ratio was perfect. No need to go crazy. I used a basic stand up strainer who's holes were just large enough to hold in the larger crumbs and drop the smaller ones into a bowl.


A primer coat of small pebbles will fit in the waffle holes so the gravy doesn't drip through.

I suggest serving the chips on one big platter with small bowls for the sausage and gravy, this way the waffles stay crisps and the guests get to participate in the assembly.
I think this preparation might just give our Southern brother's biscuits and sausage gravy a run for the money.


After taking these pictures, this was my lunch. Totally transportable, I packed another for The Nudge to take to work. The final verdict was: waffle chips reheated well in a toaster oven and the sausage gravy went into a microwave. The Nudge was the talk of the break room. He loves when he's the star of the show.

You can use your favorite Italian Chicken or Turkey Sausage but I can safely recommend Alexia Sweet Potato Waffles. They bake without any extra fat and they are all about the same size, so no waste.

Let's get cooking.....

Carotene Poutine
makes 36 waffle chips - about 6-8 servings

* 8 ounces Cabot Sharp White Cheddar, divided
* 1 bag frozen sweet potato waffle fries
* 1 package (5-6) Italian Chicken Sausages, casings removed
* 1 packet gravy mix, your favorite (I used turkey)
* chopped chives or green onions, optional

1. Preheat the oven as per manufacturer's instructions
2. Put the sausage meat in a non-stick skillet, breaking up with a wooden spoon or potato masher.
3. Chop the cheese using the pulse or grind button on a food processor.
4. Remove the potatoes from the oven and immediately sprinkle the small pebbles over the chips, encouraging them to settle in the grooves and holes. Put them back into the oven for no more than 2 minutes, or until the cheese is totally melted but not bubbling. Remove, cool for a few seconds and loosen the chips from the pan. Sprinkle with another round of large crumbles (about 3-4 each chip)  and arrange them on a platter.
5. Meanwhile, as the potatoes are baking, saute the meat until all the pink is no longer visible, breaking it up with a wooden spoon or masher. When the meat is cooked, add 1 cup of water and the gravy mix. Stir until the gravy thickens and remove to a chafing dish, a small slow cooker or a heavy ceramic bowl with a lid (can microwave as needed ).

January 28, 2015

Clam Diggers ♥ Healthier Snacks with Cabot Cheese Recipe Challenge #AD


I am one who belongs to a growing group of snackers. The ones who could make a meal from the Happy Hour and Appetizer section of a menu. The Nudge just doesn't get it. A snack to him is usually a small bowl of nuts or crunchy cheese nibs or roasted spicy beans. Boring, honey. I have a better idea.

If I was a believer in reincarnation, my ethereal passport would surely be stamped "Spain, land of the tapa".

Cabot Creamery challenged Recipe ReDux members to create healthier and balanced snacks. From finger foods to hearty apps, lighten up your favorite “big game” or red carpet eats for entertaining.
Cabot Creamery is a family-farmer owned cooperative of more than 1200 farms located throughout New England and New York. One-hundred (100) percent of Cabot’s profits go back to their farmers. - Cheddar cheese is a protein-rich snack and naturally lactose free.

"I received free samples of Cabot Cheese mentioned in this post. By posting this recipe I am entering a recipe challenge sponsored by Cabot Creamery and am eligible to win prizes. I was not additionally compensated for my time."

Since this is the time of year where huge parties celebrate the Super Bowl and Oscars, it is always nice to offer a few healthy snack options for your guests. The best about these diggers is, no one will guess healthy, they will just call them WOW!


Inspiration was to take the best of a baked clam and a clam chowder and spin it into a snack.
I call them Clam Diggers.

This recipe requires a minimal of preparation. Everything is cooked in a 12 piece muffin pan, but these are not muffins or miniature anything, I used the walls of each muffin cup to act as an individual oven, intensifying the heat so that these snacks are baked in ten minutes.

For every dozen you will need, one russet potato at least 2" in diameter (the width of each muffin cup) and large enough to yield 12 (1/4-inch) slices (the amount of cups in one pan).


Spray each muffin cup with a cooking spray (I used butter flavor) and when you turn the oven on to preheat, the pan goes in as well.
Bake the potato slice on one side until they look like the ones to the right (I call them rafts). At 425° and on the lowest rack, it only takes 5 minutes. Remove the pan from the oven and place one square of Cabot Pepper Jack cheese (half a 1/4" slice) on each raft. The residual heat will melt the cheese and anchor the clam patty.


Once in the oven the cheese melts and surrounds the potato with a crisp cheese (frico) shell. Crunchy on the edges, creamy in the middle, briny from the seafood, spicy from the pepper jack and smoky from the bacon. Everything you could want in a perfect bite.

A 1-ounce scoop of stuffing is placed on the potato/cheese raft and an indent is made in the top. That is for the bacon and I even used a healthier turkey bacon. While the bacon renders its flavor to the stuffing, the stuffing flavors the potato raft.


Win-win, simple and easy. Doesn't look like it but these are extremely healthy and can be assembled in advance and finished baking off just 5 minutes before you serve your spread.
Clams? healthy? You bet.

Clams are a low fat, high protein seafood choice with an above average amount of healthful minerals such as selenium, zinc, iron and magnesium and B vitamins like niacin. High in Vitamin C with only a total of 8g carbs per 6 ounces.
There are only 22 calories in a 1-ounce serving of fresh clams in brine and 6-ounces is all that was used to make a dozen bites.


I placed each fritter on a piece of salad for an individual presentation (3 diggers per serving), but for a large crowd, an Oscar Party or a Super Bowl party, place them on a large platter and watch them disappear. Just make sure you have another batch ready. To hold them until game time, place finished diggers on a large cookie sheet, tent with foil and keep them in a warmed oven at around 200° for up to 30 minutes.


These are so good everyone will ask for the recipe.
Let's get cooking.....

Clam Diggers
makes 12 diggers - 3 per serving

* 4 ounces raw chopped clams
* 2 tablespoons clam juice
* 5 tablespoons dried bread crumbs, flavored, or if unflavored add 2 teaspoons Italian seasoning mix
* 1 tablespoon minced shallot, white parts of scallions or green onions
* 1 large garlic clove, finely minced
* 3 ounces Cabot Pepper Jack cheese, 6 (1/4") slices, cut in half (12 squares)
* 4-ounces Cabot Aged Cheddar or Sharp Cheddar cheese, grated
* 2 tablespoon chicken broth
* 1-2 large russet potato, sliced into 12 (1/4") slices, each 2" round
* 1/4 teaspoon cumin
* 1/2 teaspoon coriander
* freshly ground black pepper to taste, about 5-6 grinds
* 2 slices turkey bacon, cut into (24) 1/2-inch squares
* cooking spray, your favorite flavor

1. Preheat oven to 425°, spray each muffin cup and place the tin in the oven.
2. In a large bowl, add the clams and the clam juice, the chicken broth, the bread crumbs, shallot, garlic, cumin & coriander and stir to combine. Let the mixture rest while you slice the potato.
3. Carefully cut, use a mandolin or V-slicer, the potato into 12 (1/4") slices, use a cookie cutter to make them 2" wide and place them in a bowl of cold water.
4. When preheated, remove the pan from the oven and place one potato slice in each muffin cup. Return to the oven and bake for 5 minutes.
5. Remove the pan from the oven and place it on a trivet. Flip each potato over and place 1 (1/4") square of pepper jack cheese on each potato.
6. Add the grated cheddar to the clam mixture and stir to combine. Scoop a heaping tablespoon clam mixture into the palm of your hand and form into a small patty. Push an indent with your finger, into the center, and place one in each muffin cup (can be frozen at this point).
7. Place two pieces of bacon on each patty and slide the tin back into the oven. Bake for an additional 5 minutes. Remove the pan and carefully place the diggers on a platter. Serve hot.

Frozen diggers: Bring to room temperature at least 1 hour before baking. If you can freeze them in the muffin tin, do so. If not, place one digger in a muffin cup before baking. The cup acts as a wall to stop the patty from sliding off the raft.