Christmas

It’s December and, around here, that means my weekends are packed solid with get-togethers with friends, more friends, fringe friends I see once a year at these parties, and family. It also means goodies abound! And if those goodies aren’t loaded with tequila, butter, or sugar, then you know what that means:

Bacon. And cheese.

Because ’tis the season, y’all.

Next week, I join some fabulous bloggers and we’ll be talking recipes, tips, entertaining ideas – and while I cannot speak for the other bloggers, at least I will be talking about bacon :) for the #HEBJoyville Virtual Progressive Dinner Party!

Monday – Table Decor by Handmade Mood
Tuesday – Drinks & Wine by Quarter Life Crisis Cuisine
Wednesday – Appetizers by me!
Thursday – Main Course by A Zesty Bite
Friday – Desserts by The Baking Fairy

You, too, can join in the delicious fun and be entered to win a $100 HEB Gift Card and a $50 Prize Pack! Here’s how it works:
1. Instagram a photo each day of your favorite holiday dish, drink, and/or decor.
2. Include the hashtag #HEBJoyvilleSweeps
3. Tag @HEB.

Easy enough, right? And one winner will be chosen each day!

Be sure to give a follow on Pinterest as we’ll be curating our favorite holiday dishes and decor ideas throughout the week!

Happy Friday! And bacon.

In accordance with the FTC Guidelines, I am disclosing that I received compensation from H-E-B for my time and participation in the H-E-B Virtual Progressive Dinner. Although we have material connection to H-E-B, any publicly stated opinions of H-E-B and their brands remain my own.

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Roasted Pecan and Chorizo Dressing

This year, I decided to make two different dressings at Thanksgiving: next to the Roasted Jalapeno & Cheddar Cornbread dressing will sit this beauty. Because nothing says “I am thankful” to your loved ones like pushing multiple vats of carbs on them like it’s meth.

When my daughter came home from a weekend away at Gram’s house with two bags of pecans from their trees, I decided our favorite dressing would go ahead and make an appearance at Thanksgiving, but not before getting a Texas makeover.

Out with the roasted chestnuts and sausage, in with roasted Texas pecans and chorizo.

Roasted Pecan and Chorizo Dressing

Chorizo is a Mexican sausage that’s spiced with cumin, chile powder, garlic, and oregano among other things. It’s a staple around here for breakfast tacos and it adds a delicious twist to what is already The World’s Greatest Thanksgiving Dressing.

If we don’t speak before Thursday, have a safe and happy Thanksgiving! And don’t forget to enter this week’s My Favorite Things Holiday giveaway. I’ll be back next week with my contributions to a progressive holiday dinner. SO much fun!

Roasted Pecan and Chorizo Dressing

I should really go clean now. Because nobody judges dusty baseboards and a missed splatter on a kitchen floor tile quite like family.

Roasted Pecan and Chorizo Dressing

A Texas twist on the classic holiday dressing with chorizo and roasted pecans.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup chopped pecans
  • 1 medium carrot, peeled and rough chopped
  • 1 medium onion, roughly chopped
  • 2 green onions, roughly chopped
  • 2 stalks celery, roughly chopped
  • 1 green bell pepper, seeded and roughly chopped
  • 1/2 bunch sage leaves
  • 1 handful flat-leaf parsley
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 lb chorizo, removed from casing and crumbled
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • ~1.5 lb loaf bread, cut into 1-inch cubes (enough to fill a 9x13 dish; I used a mixture of sourdough and multigrain)
  • 1 1/2 cup low-sodium chicken stock
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream
  • 2 large eggs

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 375.
  2. Line a baking sheet with foil and spread pecans on top; cook for ~7 minutes until browned and fragrant.
  3. Butter or spray a 9 by 13-inch baking dish with cooking spray.
  4. Place the pecans and bread cubes into a very large bowl (or 2 not-so-large bowls - you need room to toss the bread with the other ingredients).
  5. In a food processor puree the carrot, onions, celery, sage, parsley, bell pepper, and garlic until you have a fine pulp.
  6. Set a large skillet over medium-high heat and add the sausage to the pan, cooking through about 5-7 minutes.
  7. Use a slotted spoon to remove the sausage and place in the bowl with the bread
  8. Add the vegetable pulp to the pan and saute until most of the moisture has evaporated.
  9. Season liberally with salt and pepper and transfer to the bread bowl.
  10. Whisk together chicken stock, cream, and eggs. Pour over the bread and toss to mix and coat well.
  11. Transfer dressing into the prepared dish and bake for 30 to 35 minutes until golden brown on the top.

Notes

Yields: ~12 servings

Adapted from Roasted Chestnut and Sausage Dressing

Estimated time: 1 hour

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‘Tis the Season!

by Shawnda on November 21, 2014

in Christmas,Giveaways,Thanksgiving

XmasGiveaway

Tomorrow begins our annual holiday giveaways here on the blog. WHY SO EARLY, SHAWNDA? CAN YOU NOT RESPECT THE BIRD?!

I assure you I will be plenty respectful of the bird… as I drown it in a sweet tea brine next week :D

You can accuse me of surrendering to “Christmas Creep” but I am a proud, uncloseted Listen-to-Christmas-Music-on-November-1st kind of gal. And our Christmas tree has been up since Sunday night (although half of the lights are still out because I’m having a total Griswold moment and cannot figure out what I’m overlooking).

Truthfully, 2014 has been an insanely hectic year and I’m afraid that if I don’t start at least a little bit early, I won’t get it done in time. And what are you going to do with a big, shiny baking gadget that arrives during the first week of your January essential oil juicing no-carb cleanse detox?

See?

Each of this year’s giveaways will open on Saturday mornings and will include some of my very favorite things for the Cake Baker, Dinner Maker, Picture Taker, and Amazon Junkie.

Links for each giveaway will open on the date listed and the requirements/entry methods will be available on each giveaway page. Merry ThanksgivingMas!

– Congratulations to Tara!

– Congrats, Bianca!

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Roasted Jalapeno-Cheddar Skillet Cornbread

I am hosting my family for Thanksgiving this year. Holiday Hostess duties are my favorite. It combines all of my favorite things:

  • Organized chaos
  • Wine
  • Food
  • Wine
  • Feeding people
  • Wine
  • Football and stories and laughing and memories
  • Wine

As perfect as it sounds in my head, the reality is usually less sparkly and shiny. And way more wine-y.

  • I get SQUEEEEE excited and make a huge menu for twice the number of people, adding a couple of new dishes because nobody makes a good guinea pig like a person wearing stretchy-waisted pants on Thanksgiving!
  • My dad, who hosts every other year, gets upset that I’ve “changed things” on “my” year, and shows up with those couple of same dishes, made his way, even after he told me he wasn’t making anything.
  • We now have enough to food to feed half the city of Katy and no one wants to take their own leftovers home, much less mine.
  • WINE.
  • MORE WINE.
  • ALL THE WINE.

Roasted Jalapeno-Cheddar Skillet Cornbread

This year’s Thanksgiving menu is so far shaping up like this:

Appetizers & Drinks

Lunch Menu

Dessert

  • ALL THE PIES

Roasted Jalapeno-Cheddar Skillet Cornbread

For the last 6 years, every Thanksgiving and Christmas has included the holiday- and family-hit Roasted Chestnut and Sausage Dressing. It is simply amazing. But I wanted something more “Texas” this year and the arrival of November’s HEB Primo Picks immediately solidified what I was going to do about the dressing: cornbread.

{Side note: wait ’til you see what I’ve done with the Cranberry-Pomegranate-Jalapeno sauce and the Bacon Vinaigrette!}

HEB Tex's BBQ Fixins Cream Corn

Cornbread loaded with roasted jalapeno and cheddar cheese and cream corn and heavy cream and butter and sugar.

All baked in a cast iron skillet.

A scoop of warm, cheesy cornbread perfection is amazing all on its own but it’s even better served with chili. And it’s going to be even better than that topped with a ladle of gravy on Thanksgiving Day.

Roasted Jalapeno-Cheddar Skillet Cornbread

HEB has provided a selection of this month’s Ciao Italia Primo Picks to a lucky reader. To enter the giveaway, simply answer this question in the comments below: What is your favorite Thanksgiving dish?

Me: It’s a tie between Leftover Thanksgiving Sliders and The Cranwich. Because leftovers are the best part of Thanksgiving. Besides the wine.

Update: The winner is Katie who loves the good ol green bean casserole.

Roasted Jalapeno-Cheddar Skillet Cornbread

A moist skillet cornbread loaded with cream corn, roasted jalapenos, and sharp cheddar cheese.

Ingredients

  • 4 medium-large jalapenos
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) + 1 Tbsp unsalted butter, divided
  • 1 1/2 cups heavy cream*
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup shredded sharp cheddar
  • 14 oz package (or 1 can) of HEB Cream Corn
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 cups cornmeal
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • *I frequently sub with fat-free Greek yogurt. But not for Thanksgiving :) The batter is thicker but the end product is still moist (sorry, Kim) and delicious.

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350.
  2. In a small skillet roast the jalapenos, turning every few minutes, until most of the skin is blistered - you can also do this under a broiler or over open flame on the stove. I find a small skillet easiest while I'm gathering other ingredients.
  3. Transfer to a bowl covered with foil/plastic wrap and let cool enough to handle.
  4. Scrape the blistered skin, cut in half, remove the stem and seeds, and then dice the peppers.
  5. Melt 1 stick of butter and add to a large mixer bowl.
  6. Mix with the heavy cream, eggs, cheese, cream corn, and chopped jalapenos.
  7. Add the dry ingredients
  8. Heat a large cast iron skillet enough to melt 1 Tbsp of butter, swirl to coat.
  9. Transfer the batter to the skillet and then bake 35-40 minutes, just until the center is set (a knife will come out with moist crumbs attached).
  10. Let cool and serve with a spoon.

Notes

Yields: ~12 holiday side-servings, served spoonbread style

You can earn up to 4 extra entries by:
– Leaving a separate comment below that you follow us on Facebook.
– Leaving a separate comment below that you follow HEB on Facebook.
– Leaving a separate comment below that you follow the blog’s Instagram feed.
– Leaving a separate comment below that you follow HEB on Pinterest.

The fine print:
– Maximum of five (5) entries per person.
– Giveaway ends at midnight (Texas time, y’all) on Saturday, November 15.
– Winner will be selected by one of those cold, soulless, unfeeling random number generator thingies and announced on this post.
– Winners will receive a selection of HEB Primo Picks from HEB.
– Prize must be claimed within 7 days or it will be forfeited.
– Prize can only be shipped to a US address.
– Official giveaway rules can be found here.

This recipe was developed in conjunction with H-E-B and I was provided ingredients as well as compensated for my time. Messy fingers, stretchy-waisted pants, and future therapy bills for my child are all mine. You can find H-E-B on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest. And if you’re as lucky as we are, 3 locations within a 5 mile radius.

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