Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Beer Cheese Brat Chowder #10DaysOfTailgate

Welcome to our final day of our tailgate! Thank you for sticking around and joining in the fun! On this final day I want to thank Camilla of Culinary Adventure with Camilla. This lady has worked so hard to put this event together and deserves many round of applause- head over to her blog and show her some love!

Here's what the rest of the team brought to the table...

Beer Cheese Brat Chowder by Cheese Curd In Paradise
Ducky Joes by A Day in the Life on the Farm
Ducky 13 Bean Soup by The Not So Cheesy Kitchen
13 Bean Chili by Miss Laura’s Kitchen
Za’atar Spiced Cashews by The Girl In The Little Red Kitchen
Chicken & Potato Stir Fry on the Grill by Debbi Does Dinner Healthy

Boston Lager Cupcakes by Sew You Think You Can Cook

I wanted to save one of my favorite recipes for last. Beer cheese soup is really popular in Wisconsin (for obvious reasons) and I had never made it until recently. There are a few key things that I feel make a great beer cheese soup: sharp cheddar, lite beer, chicken stock (not broth), lots of black pepper.....and in this case bratwurst.  This recipe is everything that remind me of home on a cold blustery Sunday afternoon. Rich, cheesy, salty and filling....delicious.  Ron, Kellen and I devoured this soup and Kellen asked for seconds!

This has been a blast and I want to thank all of our sponsors for allowing us to use their products and create an amazing prize package for our readers.  I have another giveaway from our sponsors in an upcoming post so stay tuned! Please do not forget to visit our sponsors and enter to win an amazing prize pack! 

Thank you for joining me and #10DaysofTailgate! 


2 Tbl olive oil
2 Tbl butter
1 medium white onion, diced
2/3 cup diced carrot
2/3 cup diced potato
1/3 cup all purpose flour
1 1/2 cup beer (I used Miller Lite)
1 cup 2% or whole milk
2 1/2 cup chicken stock
4 cooked bratwurst sausages, halved and sliced
2 1/2 cup shredded sharp cheddar
1/2 cup shredded or diced american cheese
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper (add a little extra if you love pepper)
Salt, to taste


In a dutch oven or soup kettle heat olive oil and butter over medium heat. Add onion, potato and carrot to the pot, and saute till onions vegetables are tender.  

Stir in the flour till veggies are evenly coated. Whisk in the beer, milk and chicken stock. Allow the soup to come to a slow simmer and thicken while stirring frequently, about 10 minutes. 

Add brats and cheese. Stir to melt cheese and warm brats. Season with salt and pepper. Allow soup to bubble on medium low for about 5 minutes.

Monday, September 29, 2014

Weekly Meal Plan 9/29 - 10/5

Happy Monday (night)! I am a little behind today!

This weekend was filled with fun with our family and friends. On Friday night we celebrated my nephew's 6th birthday with Indian food and dinosaur cake. Kellen tried chicken tikka masala for the first time and was a big fan! I love that he is into trying different foods and am enjoying it while it lasts (is it wishful thinking to say forever???). We got our nephew Junior Monopoly, Guess Who? and a robot savings back to start saving his allowance for his bigger wants.  

On Saturday, my friend Kayla and I headed up to Door County to enjoy the weather with the kids. First stop was The Farm, followed by lunch and finally a trip to the orchard and pumpkin market in Egg Harbor. 

He was afraid to do this in the beginning of summer!

The corn is as high as an elephant's eye!

I always miss this view in the winter....

On Saturday, we headed to Appleton to try the Basil Cafe with my friend Amanda. We tried the red shrimp curry, Pho and another spicy noodle dish- it was amazing. Kellen also tried Pad Thai and loved it all!

On Sunday, we went to a Packer party/ gender reveal for our cousin's (It's a boy!) and loved watching the Packers beat on the Bears. It is always an extra treat to see them beat Chicago.....sorry to my Bear loving friends and readers! 

Tonight we are heading to dinner at one of our favorite places with our friend Melissa and then relaxing for the evening. The rest of the week is pretty low key and we are looking forward to a Thursday night Packer game, taking photos of the cousins on Friday for fall and a day of fun with our nephew as part of his 5th birthday gift (and out for Thai later). 

Have a great week!

Here is what is on tap: 

Monday: Out to Plae Bistro
Tuesday: 7-Up Pork Chops, Wild Rice and Saute Mushrooms
Wednesday: Bacon Pierogie Bake and Green Beans
Thursday: Go Pack Go! Grilled Honey Curry Chicken, Couscous and Green Beans
Friday: French Onion Grilled Chicken, Parmesan Spinach Orzo and Broccoli
Saturday: Spicy Beef Chili
Sunday: Out for Thai

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Grilled Chipotle Ranch Chicken Wings #10DaysOfTailgate

Welcome to another day of tailgating- and football Sunday no less! 

Here's what the rest of the team brought to the table today...

‘Da Bears in ‘Da Blankets by Sew You Think You Can Cook
Jalapeno Popper Deviled Eggs by Debbi Does Dinner Healthy
Philly Cheese Steak Eggrolls by Cooking In Stilettos
Ketchup & Mustard Glazed Meatballs by Culinary Adventures with Camilla

Chipotle Ranch Chicken Wings by Cheese Curd In Paradise
White Chicken Chili by A Day in the Life on the Farm
Italian Sausages with Fire Grilled Peppers and Onions by A Day in the Life on the Farm
Saucy Maple Leaf Duck Sliders by Making Miracles
Three Pepper Burgers by Eliot’s Eats
Chipotle Mustard Pork Chops by The Pajama Chef
Cherry Chipotle Drumsticks by Summer Scraps

Salads in Jars by OnTheMove-In the Galley

Today I am bringing you a delicious wing recipe using a product from our sponsor, Gourmet Garden. Gourmet Garden was kind enough to send participants 12 different herb products for this challenge. It was one of the few products I have used in the past and found it to be really great. I like that the products are a stir in and extend the herbs shelf life, but don't sacrifice the fresh flavor.  I find that using dried herbs in a recipe does not always cut it (especially when marinating), and I thought this was a perfect chance to incorporate  the herbs into my chicken wings. The ranch I was using already has herbs, but I wanted to up the flavor of my wings with garlic, oregano and parsley.  The marinate is spicy and full of flavor from all the different herbs- perfect for grilled chicken.  Grilling wings can be a little tricky because you want to cook them long enough to crisp the skin, but not completely dry out your wings. I always think it is important to use a marinate with a little fat from oil to keep the meat moist as they grill.

My friend Emily came over to test out the wings and they received two thumbs up from all three of us! They kids had an alternate dinner because the chipotle is pretty spicy! Kellen is a spicy food lover, but I give to him in small amounts so he doesn't over do it. We are lucky to have a pretty open-minded eater- he tried Pho last night for dinner!

Today we are headed to Ron's parents for the PACKER game. The whole family will be there because we have a special baby news announcement from our cousins at half time! Woohoo!

Happy football Sunday everyone and here is to a Packer win against the Bears! 


2 1/2 lb chicken wings and drummies (about 25-30 pieces)
2/3 cup ranch dressing
2 chipotles in adobo sauce (+ 1 Tbl adobo sauce)
1 Tbl Gourmet Garden Chunky Garlic or 1 Tbl minced garlic
1 Tbl Gourmet Garden Oregano or 1 Tbl fresh finely chopped oregano
1 Tbl Gourmet Garden Parselt or 1 Tbl fresh finely chopped parselt
2 Tbl olive oil


In a food processor, add ranch, peppers, adobo, garlic, herbs and oil. Pulse till smooth. 

In a large resealable bag add wings and chipotle ranch. Allow chicken wings to marinate for 4-8 hours. Remove chicken from marinate and discard remaining marinate. 

Heat grill to medium heat and grill wings 5 minutes on the first side. Flip the wings and allow them to cook 4-5 minutes.  After the initial cooking, rotate and flip wings for an additional 3-4 minutes or until the skin gets crispy and slightly charred. 

Remove wings from grill and serve immediately with a side of ranch. 

Friday, September 26, 2014

Loaded Baked Potato Beer Dip #10DaysOfTailgate

Happy Friday and welcome to another day of tailgating! 

Here's what the rest of the crew brought to the table...

Diablo’d Cheesy Bacon-Onion Pinwheel Rolls by Things I Make (for Dinner)
Spiced Kofta with Carrot Karma Yogurt Dip by Culinary Adventures with Camilla

Baked Potato Beer Dip by Cheese Curd In Paradise
Hot Caramelized Onion Dip by Eliot’s Eats
Healthier Buffalo Cauliflower Dip by The Spiffy Cookie
Dunkin Duck, Cheesy Bacon and Ranch Dip by A Day in the Life on the Farm

Honey Grilled Chicken and Vegetable Kebabs by Debbi Does Dinner Healthy
Thai Chicken Skewers by Sew You Think You Can Cook
Bacon Cheeseburger Soup by From Gate to Plate

Grilled Parsley Potatoes by Curious Cuisiniere
Grilled Vegetables by Summer Scraps

Pumpkin Bars by The Pajama Chef

Do you love dips?

We do. We absolutely love dips of all kinds at our house. Nothing screams football Sunday to me like chips and dips (well, besides bratwurst!). I am a non-discriminator when it comes to dip as well. I love hot,cold, meatless, meaty, spicy, mild, cheesy, baked, in a crockpot...whew...the list could go on and on, but I will cut myself off there and end with boozy.  Beer dip is really popular in our area and served at most parties and sporting events. I thought this was a perfect opportunity to jack-up this favorite dip.

I thought of the similar flavors of beer dip to a loaded baked potato, and my light bulb went off to combine the two.  Given that it was another opportunity to prepare and eat bacon- my husband was also thrilled.  We both loved the flavors of this dip! The traditional beer dip holds on strong, but is enhanced with the smoky bacon, sharp cheddar and bite from the green onions. I like to serve this with potato chips, but add a few pretzels as well for beer dip purists.

Tonight we are celebrating our nephew's 6th birthday! I can't believe the little dude is already 6! It feels like my sister just had him....sigh.... Whoever told me kids grown up to fast hit the nail right on the head- way too fast! Have a wonderful weekend everyone and stay tuned for Sunday- only a few more tailgate posts to go!


2 (8 oz) packages cream cheese, softened
1 packet ranch dressing mix
1/4 cup sour cream
1/2 tsp ground black pepper
2/3 cup beer
2 cup sharp cheddar cheese (reserve 2 Tbl for topping)
2/3 cup cooked chopped bacon (reserve 1 Tbl for topping)
1/3 cup sliced green onions (reserve 1 Tbl for topping)
Potato Chips and Pretzels


In a medium bowl, mix cream cheese, ranch packet, sour cream and pepper till smooth (I like to use a hand mixer). Slowly add in the beer till you reach desired consistency. Gently stir in the cheese, bacon and green onions. Place in fridge for about 30 minutes.

Remove from fridge and transfer to serving dish. Top with cheese, bacon and onions. Serve with potato chips and pretzels. 

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Green and Gold Grilled Chicken (Green Curry and Pineapple) #10DaysOfTailgate

Welcome to the tailgate!

Here's what everyone brought to the table today...

Crock Pot Mango Hot Wings by Curious Cuisiniere
Cheesy Pulled Pork Egg Rolls by From Gate to Plate
Herbed Deviled Eggs by Culinary Adventures with Camilla

Amaretto Spiced Apple Cider by The Spiffy Cookie

Roasted Red Pepper Hummus by Debbi Does Dinner Healthy

Turducken Meatballs by Miss Laura’s Kitchen
Meaty “Beast Mode” Baked Beans by OnTheMove-In the Galley
Chicken Apple Bratwurst Burgers by A Kitchen Hoor’s Adventures

Grilled Green Beans, Mushrooms, and Duck Bacon by The Pajama Chef

Ron and I are lovers of any type of curry. I love incorporating it into different dishes and marinates. Normally, I prefer red curry to green, but I wanted to make a play on a green and gold chicken to represent the Packers for the #10DaysofTailgate.  As you know, I am a big fan of grilled pineapple in any dish and I thought it would work perfectly with green curry to create a delicious chicken marinate.  I really loved the sweet and spicy flavors of this chicken and the grilled pineapple is a fantastic addition, as usual. Even if you are not a fan of the green and gold Pack (what are you thinking!), you will love this variation of grilled chicken.

Our tailgating challenge is just at the halfway point and it has been so much fun hearing from all of you and seeing the different recipes other participants are coming up with!  I hope you stay with us the rest of the week and keep looking at what fun and delicious recipes are yet to come! Don't forget to enter the giveaway and visit our sponsors!

Tonight, my friend Emily and her daughter are coming to watch the new Law and Order from Wednesday night. I am so excited! Facebook had been blowing up with all sorts of #savebabybenson posts and I am excited to see what all the hype will lead to (hopefully an awesome premier). 


4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 can coconut milk (I use full fat)
2 1/2 Tbl green curry paste
2 Tbl soy sauce
1/2 cup pineapple juice
1/8 cup olive oil
1 Tbl brown sugar
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
1 1/2 Tbl chopped fresh basil
8 fresh pineapple slices


Combine coconut milk, green curry paste,soy sauce, pineapple juice,oil, brown sugar, garlic, salt, pepper and basil in a resealable plastic bag. Add the chicken to the bag, squeezing out as much air as possible, and seal. Gently toss to coat the chicken in the marinade. Place in the refrigerator and marinade for at least 8 hours.

Preheat grill to medium heat. Grill for about 5-6 minutes per side.  Remove chicken from grill and while it rests quickly grill the pineapple to give it a slight char.

Serve over rice or couscous.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Ultimate Bacon Burger #10DaysOfTailgate

Welcome to another day of tailgating!

Here's what the rest of the team brought to the table...

Pretzel Sticks with Two Sauces by Eliot’s Eats
Cherry Chipotle BBQ Pork Nachos by The Spiffy Cookie
Duck Poppers by CafeTerra

Cranberry Gin Fizz by Culinary Adventures with Camilla

Corn and Cheddar Dip by Sew You Think You Can Cook

Ultimate Bacon Burger by Cheese Curd In Paradise
Cincinnati Turkey Chili by The Pajama Chef
Smoky Date Pulled Pork by Curious Cuisiniere

Just Ducky Baked Beans by A Day in the Life on the Farm

Linebacker-Sized Chocolate Chip Cookies by Things I Make (for Dinner)
Rocky Ledge Bars by Debbi Does Dinner Healthy
Pear Poppy Snails {Birnen Mohn Schnecken} by The Not So Cheesy Kitchen
Almond Chocolate Chip Cookies by Love and Confections

Are you a bacon lover? Well, I did an amazing thing with bacon. I have been creating this burger in my head for awhile now, and am happy that it has come to be reality. Disclaimer: your house will smell like bacon for days after you make these babies.... in our case we were kind of excited about that. I took just over 2 pounds of bacon and used it to make the different components of these burgers. I think the best method is cooking all of the bacon so it is ready and you can use it as you go. I think Ron fell more in love with me when I call him on the way home from the store and said "honey, cook all the bacon in the house". Music to his bacon lovin' ears.

I started by grinding bacon for the burger patties and the aoli. I did it in separate batches to measure for the recipe, but it could be ground all at once.  I find that grinding the bacon over chopping is preferable because it is smaller and gives more bacon flavor through out the entire burger.  I also used the ground bacon in the aoli with a bit of roasted garlic, but if you do not have roasted garlic fresh minced works well too.  The burger with the aoli, melted cheese and crispy bacon on top is the perfect burger for a bacon lover! I think that you could easily add grilled or fried onion or any veggies and have a great result. However, we stuck to bacon, bacon and bacon on our burger. In my opinion, the sauce makes the burger and is fantastic for dipping potato wedges and veggies as well.

To test for the burger to insure they reached desired temperature of 160 degree F I used a handy gadget from our sponsor ThermoWorks. ThermoWorks sent all participants a digital thermometer called ThermoPop. ThermoPop is a rotating pocket thermometer which allows the user a good angle to read the temperature in any position. ThermoPop also gives a reading within 5-6 seconds which is great when you are cooking over a hot grill! Another plus they come in a variety of fun colors (mine is red).

Thanks for joining me at our tailgate party! Please visit my fellow tailgaters for more delicious recipes and don't forget to enter the giveaway!


10 pieces of bacon, cooked crisp and ground
2 lb ground beef
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp black pepper

for aoli:
2/3 cup mayo
1-2 cloves roasted garlic (you can read my method here) or 1 clove minced garlic
1 tsp fresh lemon juice
4 pieces of bacon, cooked crisp and ground
1 Tbl BBQ sauce
1/4 tsp white pepper

6 Hamburger buns, grilled
6 sliced of American cheese
12 strips of bacon, cooked crisp


In a small food processor combine ground bacon, mayo, garlic, lemon juice, bbq sauce and white pepper. Plus till evenly blended. You could do this by hand, but make sure the garlic is finely diced.  Remove sauce from food processor and set a side.

In a large bowl, gently mix beef, bacon and spices till loosely mixed together.  Form into 6 burger patties. Heat grill to medium high and grill 3-4 minutes per side or until thermometer reads 160 degrees F at the thickest part of the burger.  In the last minute of cooking, place one slice of cheese on each burger. Allow cheese to melt and remove burgers from the grill. Quickly toast the split buns on the grill (about 30 seconds to 1 minute) and remove.

To assemble the burgers, spread aoli on both sides of the bun. Next place burger on the bun and top with bacon. Crack a beer and devour. 

Monday, September 22, 2014

Brat Bites with Spicy Mustard Dipping Sauce #10DaysOfTailgate

Welcome to another day of our tailgate!

Here's what the rest of the team brought to the table...

Baked Corndog Nuggets with El Diablo Honey Mustard by A Kitchen Hoor’s Adventures


Bacon CheeseburgerEgg Rolls by Things I Make (for Dinner)
Chicken Parmesan Sliders by Debbi Does Dinner Healthy
Cherry Chipotle Meatloaf Sandwiches by The Not So Cheesy Kitchen
Cherry Chipotle Meatballs by From Gate to Plate

SRC Surprise Recipe by A Day in the Life on the Farm

Cinnamon Puppy Chow by The Pajama Chef

My recipe uses an ingredient from one of our generous sponsors, El Diablo Mustard. El Diablo has many different types of spicy mustard flavors including, mango, steakhouse, habanero, chipotle, jalapeno and Texas chili. I used El Diablo's jalapeno mustard to create my dipping sauce (amazing!).  If you do not have this mustard you can use regular brown or yellow and a bit of diced hot pepper of choice. I really liked the different flavors of the mustard and, aside from jalapeno, loved the steakhouse flavor! I think it could make an amazing sauce if you added a bit of blue cheese to a burger or a steak sandwich.

I have to confess that these started a bit of a fight at our house. You see Ron was working at the lab and I had every intention of saving him a few of these babies for when he came home....... but I didn't. In fact, Kellen and I ate them all.....oops. I promised him I would make them again since he was bummed about missing out on these tasty munchies. They are a fun play on pigs in a blanket and the sauce is the perfect tangy & spicy companion. 

Thanks for joining me at our tailgate party! Please visit my fellow tailgaters for more delicious recipes and don't forget to enter the giveaway!


5 grilled bratwursts
1 package of seamless crescent rolls

 for sauce:
1/2 cup mayo
3 1/2 Tbl El Diablo Jalapeno Mustard (3 Tbl mustard of choice with 1/2 tsp diced jalapeno)
1 tsp finely chopped parsley 
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1/8 tsp white pepper


Place all sauce ingredients into a medium bowl. Mix well and set aside.

Pre-heat over to 350 degrees.

Slice each brat into five equal pieces. Cut crescent dough length-wise and roll dough around the brat. Cut the dough when it circles around the brat piece and press to seal.

Place brats on a cookie sheet and bake 10-12 minutes or until golden.

Serve immediately with mustard dipping sauce.

Makes 25 bites.