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Hot Shrimp Scampi Spinach Dip

I have now made this dip twice. It is beyond incredible! Creamy, garlicky, cheesy, rich and loaded with shrimp. If there is anything left over you can use it as a topping on baked fish as well, which I did! Still incredible. If you don’t like shrimp or garlic stay away. Once you start eating this you can’t stop either so be prepared. The first time I made it we had a friend over for cocktails and snacks, this friend is a chef by the way. He was blown away by it. So it’s officially my new dip. It is best served with tortilla chips or pita chips. Even thin crostini would be great or crackers. I used greek yogurt cream cheese the first time I made it. It’s a mix of greek yogurt with cream cheese and fewer calories than regular cream cheese. But it’s just as good with regular cream cheese which I used the 2nd time. The recipe also calls for a shallot, which I didn’t have the first time I made it so I used 1/2 of a Vidalia sweet onion. I also used light mayonnaise but feel free to use regular.

Give this recipe a try, you won’t be disappointed!

Hot Shrimp Scampi Spinach Dip

Hot Shrimp Scampi Spinach Dip

INGREDIENTS:

1 8 oz. package cream cheese of choice (cut up into cubes)

10-12 oz. medium cooked shrimp, chopped into chunks. (2-3 chunks per shrimp)

2 cups fresh spinach leaves roughly chopped

2/3 cup shredded parmesan cheese (feel free to use more cheese also)

1/3 cup light mayonnaise

1 medium shallot, finely chopped

2 tablespoons butter

1 tablespoon minced garlic (more if you like a lot of garlic!)

1 tsp fresh lemon juice

Basil leaf for garnish

DIRECTIONS:

Preheat oven to 350°.

In a large skillet, melt the butter over medium-high heat. Toss in the shrimp, spinach, shallot, and garlic.

Stir gently until the shallot is translucent and the spinach is wilted. This should take about 5 minutes, making sure all the ingredients are heated through.

Remove from the heat and add the lemon juice.

Transfer the mixture into a large mixing bowl. Add the mayonnaise, 1/3 cup of the parmesan cheese and the cream cheese and mix well.

Put mixture into a baking dish large enough to hold it all. 8×8 or larger. Anything is good as long as it’s large enough to hold it all. Sprinkle the rest of the parmesan cheese on top and bake uncovered for 15-20 minutes. The top should be lightly browned and bubbling.

Garnish with a basil leave. Serve hot/warm!

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Refreshing Cucumber Salsa

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I received this recipe in my email this weekend and just had to try it out. It was originally from a Taste of Home reader from North Dakota (Crisp Cucumber Salsa) and the only thing I changed was the type of cucumber. I used the english/hothouse cucumber and didn’t peel it. The original recipe called for peeling the cucumber, which I would only do if I used a regular variety. The english style holds up better and stays firmer.

I made the recipe for a couple of friends and it was a huge success. So easy and healthy as well! The original recipe called for serving immediately but I think letting it chill for a bit would be better. I will definitely be making this quite a bit this summer!

A refreshing, light, crunchy salsa/relish. It would easily go on burgers, hot dogs, chicken or fish as well! I might even try using greek yogurt instead of the sour cream next time! If anyone tries it that way let me know!

Ingredients:

2 cups finely chopped, seeded cucumber (I used english cucumber)

1/2 cup finely chopped seeded tomato (1 medium plum tomato)

1/4 cup chopped red onion

2 TBS minced fresh parsley

1 jalapeño pepper, seeded and chopped

4-1/2 tsp minced fresh cilantro

1 clove garlic, minced

1/4 cup light sour cream

1-1/2 tsp lemon juice

1-1/2 tsp lime juice

1/4 tsp ground cumin

1/4 tsp seasoned salt

Baked tortilla chip scoops

Instructions:

1: In a medium bowl, combine the cucumber, tomato, red onion, parsley, jalapeño pepper, cilantro and garlic.

2: in a small bowl add the sour cream, lemon juice, lime juice, cumin and seasoned salt.

3: Pour creamy mixture over the cucumber mixture and mix gently. Coating all ingredients.

4: It can be served immediately but is better chilled for about 15-30 minutes before serving. Stir before serving.

Calories: 16 per 1/4 cup (without chips)

Fat: 1g

Sodium: 44mg

Carbs: 2g

Protein: 1g

2 Comments »

Hot & Spicy Black-Eyed Pea Dip

Happy New Year everyone! Hope everyone’s new year is off to a good start so far. Keeping with the whole having black-eyed peas for New Years is the reason for this recipe. Ok, yes I was supposed to post it BEFORE New Year’s but life happens and I am doing it now.

This recipe was adapted from one of my favorites, Ree Drummond, The Pioneer Woman. Her recipe was Zannie’s Black-Eyed Pea Dip. Click the link if you want to see the original.

I didn’t have all the exact ingredients so I changed it up a bit. It was delicious, yes, was. My husband and I devoured it. So delicious! So spicy! So darn good!

Feel free to change the ingredients around, I did! So hopefully even though we didn’t have this exactly on New Year’s, I hope it brings good luck

Spicy Black-Eyed Pea Dip

INGREDIENTS:

1 can (about 14 ounces) Black-Eyed Peas

½ medium Vidalia onion, chopped fine

3 cloves garlic, chopped fine

¼ cup light sour cream

1 cup grated Habanero Cheddar Cheese (I used Cabot, it was in the house)

3 tablespoons salsa (any kind)

salt & pepper to taste

Tortilla chips (I used Trader Joe’s Quinoa & Black Bean tortilla chips)

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Preheat oven to 350º
  2. Drain and rinse can of black beans. Put in large bowl and mash with a fork but leave some whole.
  3. Add rest of ingredients. Stir to combine.
  4. Spread into a 1¼-1½ quart baking dish.
  5. Bake for 20-30 minutes until bubbly and hot. (I baked for 30 minutes)
  6. Serve with tortilla chips!

Spicy Black-Eyed Pea Dip Spicy Black-Eyed Pea Dip Quinoa & Black Bean Tortilla Chips

2 Comments »

Mary’s Famous Mexican Dip

Yes I know I have been quite negligent with my blog lately! I am so sorry everyone. I made a promise to myself this morning to do better and I will!

Today’s recipe I have tried to get for years! Everytime I visit my sister Michele in NJ for any type of party she always has this dip. Her mother-in-law Mary makes it and showed Michele and everyone falls in love with it! Even the kids! So on a recent trip there, Mary happened to be in attendance as well and the dip was on the menu. So with camera and notebook in hand I got it! FINALLY! It’s a type of layered dip that you serve on a platter. Serve it with tortilla chips. I would recommend using stronger chips as well because this dip has so many yummy things you don’t want to lose anything because of a broken chip! We’ve all been there, digging in to a great dip and snap! Broken chip. You try again. Snap again! Another broken chip. So find your best thicker/stronger chips for this recipe.  I am also playing with an idea to make this as an Italian dip as well. I’ll post that when I work it out! So for now, here’s everyone’s newest favorite party snack! Thanks Mary!! (Now I want to go and make some to snack on!)

Mary preparing the famous dip!

Ingredients:

1 package (8 oz.) cream cheese (you can use light cream cheese if you wish)

1  jar (16oz.) of your favorite salsa

Shredded lettuce, about 2 cups

Shredded cheddar cheese, about 8 ounces

3-4 campari or plum tomatoes, chopped (Or you can use 1-2 large)

3-4 scallions, chopped (use whole scallion)

¼ cup jalapeño slices

1 small can sliced black olives (You can use green if you don’t like black)

So pretty!

Directions:

  1. On a large platter spread cream cheese to cover bottom.
  2. Spread salsa over the cream cheese.
  3. Add shredded lettuce on top of the salsa.
  4. Add the shredded cheddar evenly over the salsa.
  5. Top with the chopped tomatoes.
  6. Add scallions.
  7. Add jalapeño slices.
  8. Top with black olives.

Serve with sturdy chips!! Eat some before it disappears!

It's going fast!

4 Comments »

Spicy Crab Dip

Long time no post! I’m still trying to get in the routine of blogging when I get home from work. Being I don’t get home till 7pm it’s been tough. But I am determined to get back into this everyday, again. Today’s recipe I found through Taste of Home magazine. I had gotten it in an email. I used to get the magazine but have had to cut back so now I just get emails. This recipe is simple, quick, low-calorie and delicious! Plus it won’t break the bank. It uses the imitation crabmeat but feel free to use the real stuff if you want! I also substituted light mayonnaise and light cream cheese for the full fat ones. Again, feel free to use the regular kind. It can be served with crackers or veggies. Your choice! Enjoy!

Photo courtesy of Taste of Home magazine

INGREDIENTS:

1/3 cup light mayonnaise

2 tablespoons dried minced onion

2 tablespoons lemon juice

2 tablespoons white wine

1 tablespoon minced garlic

½ teaspoon cayenne pepper, optional

½ teaspoon hot pepper sauce, optional

2 packages (8 ounces each) light cream cheese, cubed

1 pound imitation crabmeat, chopped


DIRECTIONS:

1. In a food processor, combine the first eight ingredients. Cover and process until smooth. Transfer to a large microwave-safe bowl. Stir in the crabmeat, mix well.

2. Cover and microwave on HIGH for 2-3 minutes or until bubbly. Serve warm with crackers or vegetables.

Makes 4 cups

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Roasted Garlic Mayo & Butter

So I am in week two of being back to work. I’m still trying to get organized so today’s blog will be brief. I’ve been on a garlic roasting binge lately and I am using it in everything. I have now made roasted garlic butter and roasted garlic mayonnaise.Both delicious and not so strong because the roasting mellow the flavor. Yes they both look similar but they are very different and very tasty!

Roasted Garlic Butter

INGREDIENTS:

1 head of roasted garlic

1 cup softened butter/butter substitute

DIRECTIONS:

Put ingredients into food processor and blend until smooth.

Roasted Garlic Mayo

INGREDIENTS:

1 head of roasted garlic

1 cup light mayonnaise (or regular)

DIRECTIONS:

Put ingredients into food processor and blend until smooth.

1 Comment »

Cobb Salad Dip

Well seems like my attempts at getting the blog done earlier with the new job isn’t working out. Today anyway. I thought I did it and then realized that was the day before! My brain is still adjusting to all of this.

I think pretty much everyone likes a good Cobb Salad. But with Super Bowl coming up I wanted something different to add this year. Salad is too healthy for Super Bowl snacking so this is the next best thing. Cobb Salad as a dip! Minus the lettuce of course. You can serve it with celery stick if you want but it will go best with  crackers or pita chips! Yum…. I will be making this myself for the first time this weekend so I will swap out the picture for my own when I do.


INGREDIENTS:

1 cup light sour cream

1/3 cup crumbled blue cheese (about 2 ounces)

2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

1 medium avocado, finely chopped about 1 1/3 cups, cut just before serving

¼ cup thinly sliced scallions

2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh Italian parsley

4 pieces bacon, well-browned and crumbled

DIRECTIONS:

Step 1: This can be done up to 1 day ahead and refrigerated in a covered container. Stir briefly and finish with step 2.

Place sour cream, blue cheese, lemon juice, salt and Worcestershire in a medium nonreactive bowl and stir until well combined.

Step 2: Fold in avocado, scallions, and parsley, transfer to a shallow serving dish and top with bacon. Serve with celery sticks or assorted crackers, chips, etc.

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Shrimp Salsa

Okay, I need to make another resolution. ALWAYS TAKE PICTURES OF THE FOOD AT MY PARTIES!!! This recipe I have made before but of course it was PB (Pre-Blog). Of course I never took pictures of the food because for the most part, why would I? Well now I will. Even if it’s with my cell phone. But until I make this again I do not have an actual picture of it. Use your imagination.

This week also marks my venture back into the workforce outside my house. I worked at home for 6 years and going back into an office is going to be a bit shocking to my system. So I am trying to get the week’s blogs done earlier so that if I am too tired I will still have the blog. If anything earth-shattering happens that I need to post I will add it to the next day’s blog. And since I may not be near a computer during the day as I am now, I will approve comments when I get home. Please bear with me. I normally don’t like to have to approve all comments but there has been a ton of spam lately and I don’t want anything slipping by. Thanks! So without further ado here is today’s post.

This salsa is a great side dish for the upcoming Super Bowl weekend. It’s easy, fast and very healthy for you! I know, healthy and Super Bowl usually don’t go together but why not? Who says it can’t? It can be served with tortilla chips so it won’t be a shock to the Super Bowl system. I would also suggest using endive leaves as a “chip” to eat this. Very tasty and still crunchy. It’s a very colorful salsa and will be a huge hit.

Photo is for illustrative purposes only. This is not the exact photo for recipe but it's close.

INGREDIENTS:

½ pound peeled, cooked shrimp, coarsely chopped

1½  cups salsa (your choice)

4 scallions, green and white parts, thinly sliced

¼ teaspoon freshly ground pepper

¼ cup minced cilantro

1 tablespoon fresh lime juice

1 garlic clove, minced

½ teaspoon dried oregano

DIRECTIONS:

Combine all ingredients in a medium bowl. Refrigerate, covered, until flavors are blended, at least an hour.

Serve with tortilla chips, endive, or whatever you choose.

2 Comments »

Firecracker Coconut Dip

Ever have one of those “hump” days that make the “hump” seem like it’s Mt. Everest? Well today was that day for me. I also think I should have made my New Year resolution something other than exercising more. I think it should have been for me to do my blog in the MORNING!! Well today’s mess started yesterday morning. Took my half-and-half out of the fridge for my coffee and thought the container seemed a little on the warm side. Hmmm…Started checking other items. Same thing. Freezer check. Most still frozen but a few items were soft. Not a good sign. So I put thermometers in both places and my fridge was reading 60 degrees! Um that’s not right! And the freezer was almost 50! Also not a good thing. So I cranked the temperature to the highest it would go and by that night the fridge only dropped maybe 5 degrees. Same in the freezer. So I called the service dudes. They told me they’d be here sometime today between 8 and 5! As usual! And they’d call 30 minutes before they arrived! OMG! I was now trapped in the house all day. Afraid to go in the shower for fear the guy would of course show up without calling or something. Couldn’t do anything! Then later in the afternoon I get my delivery from Apple computers with my new iLife 11 software for my iMac. A third of the way through the installation it froze!!! OMG again! Now I’m on hold for tech support and of course the service guy beeps in! He’ll be there in 30 minutes! Yikes! Go back to Apple and they guy on the other end is saying Hello?? Ok so we shut down my iMac (Fiona, I name all my computers) and we try again. He stayed on the phone with me the entire time. All went well! Just a brain fart! It happens. I was scared to do anything for fear I’d erase my entire computer! (that is how you get when you have PCs for most of your computer using life and they always have issues) And for anyone who knows me I am totally attached at the hip to my computer. So as I am saying thank you and hanging up with Apple the repair guy shows up! 5:00! 40 minutes later my fridge is working. For now. Some defroster/heater or something. I needed a drink! So here I am, at 7:15pm finally doing the blog! And now that I’ve put you all to sleep with my ramblings…Here is today’s recipe.

This is a low-calorie dip and so refreshing and different from your usual ranch veggie dips or whatever else is out there. I love making my own dips, I know what is in them and I know what isn’t! You can even serve this dip with grilled shrimp or pork or put it on a burger! Versatility is a wonderful thing! And the “firecracker” is the explosion of flavor you will get from the wasabi or horseradish. If you don’t like it too “hot” put less in. But its sooo good!!

INGREDIENTS:

1 package (8oz.) light cream cheese, softened

1 carton (8oz.) light sour cream

½ cup unsweetened coconut milk or light cream of coconut

1-2 tablespoons wasabi paste (you can also use 2 tablespoons prepared horseradish)

1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger

1 teaspoon finely shredded lime peel

3 tablespoons lime juice

DIRECTIONS:

1. In a medium mixing bowl beat the cream cheese with an electric mixer on medium speed for about 30 seconds. Beat in the sour cream, coconut milk or cream of coconut, wasabi paste, ginger, lime peel and lime juice until smooth. Chill for at least an hour. Always better to let dips sit and mellow out.

2. Serve with carrots, sugar snap peas, celery, peppers or any other vegetables you like!

Makes about 2½ cups

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Shrimp w/Sour Cream and Onion Dip

Well back to somewhat of a normal week. Christmas is over but we still have New Year’s coming up. So this recipe today is a redo of a dip I posted some time ago. Originally the recipe called for the shrimp to be chilled in it for at least 8 hours. This time I just cut the recipe in half and used it in place of the usual cocktail sauce. Nothing against regular cocktail sauce but it gets boring. When I served this dip with the shrimp last week it was a huge hit! Everyone loved it. The small amount I had left over also turned a little bit pink from the red onion in it. Festive! So make up a batch for New Year’s Eve and enjoy!

INGREDIENTS:

¾ cup light mayonnaise

¼ cup light sour cream

3 tablespoons lemon juice

2 tablespoons sugar (or Splenda)

¼ cup finely chopped red onion

1 tablespoon dried dill

1 pound medium-large cooked shrimp, shelled and deveined

DIRECTIONS:

1. In a bowl combine the mayonnaise, sour cream, lemon juice, sugar, onion, and dill. Mix well. Chill to set up at least an hour.

2. Serve with shrimp!

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