Tuesday, January 25, 2011


So, if you've been a good girl (or boy!), and have been religiously reading my weekly newspaper column, Sugar and Spice, then you'd already know that today's blog post was going to be all about Super Bowl appetizers. And how Big Daddy E. and I did a wild and crazy thing a while back and actually ate APPETIZERS FOR DINNER! This is what our spread looked like:

Of course, we didn't eat ALL that Spinach Artichoke Dip--but we sure wanted to! To.Die.For. Really. Anyways, who says you have to serve boring old chips and dip for the Super Bowl this year?

Let's get started. For the Spinach Artichoke Dip (I know--artichokes again???), you'll need another can of artichoke hearts. Pat them dry, then slice them up:

You'll also need to squeeze to death a 10oz. package of frozen chopped spinach,and put it in a large mixing bowl. Then you'll add your Parmesan cheese, chopped artichoke hearts, mayo, sour cream, salt and pepper :

Pour it all into a 1 quart baking dish and sprinkle with a little more Parmesan. Bake for about 25 minutes (full recipe below), and serve with little rye bread squares, crackers or pita chips. This is how it looks hot and bubbly out of the oven:

Why oh why do I blog when I'm hungry--this just looks sooooo good! Anyways, a few hours before you bake this, you can prepare your Garlic Roasted Shrimp Cocktail (they need to chill for 2 hours before eating). I know these babies can be a little expensive, but they're cheaper if you buy them frozen with the skins and tails still on. You will not believe how much better tasting your shrimp will be, over the usual pre-cooked variety used in shrimp cocktail. I use the jumbo shrimp, which is usually 16-20 pieces to the pound. I also leave the tails on--easier to eat that way:

Finely chop 2 cloves of garlic (always smash the cloves with a large knife first--so much easier to get the skins off):

In a large bowl, toss the shrimp and garlic with some extra virgin olive oil (I keep mine in a pretty bottle by the stove, for easy access), some salt and some pepper:

Spread shrimp out on a baking sheet in a single layer, like so:

Roast for 3 minutes (complete recipe below), then turn and roast another 2-4 mintues or until shrimp are opaque. Place roasted shrimp in a shallow dish; cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours. Prepare your cocktail sauce, using these 2 ingredients (or use store-bought):

Now stand back and Ooo and Aaah over your bee-yooooo-teee-fulll spread!:


Serves 8

1 10 oz. package frozen, chopped spinach, thawed and squeezed dry
1 6 oz. can artichoke hearts packed in water, thinly sliced and patted dry
1 cup freshly grated Parmesano Reggiano cheese, divided
3/4 cup mayonnaise
3/4 cup sour cream
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Heat oven to 425 degrees. In a large bowl, mix spinach, artichokes, 3/4 cup Parmesan cheese, sour cream, salt and pepper (to taste). Transfer to a 1 quart baking dish and sprinkle with remaining Parmesan. Bake until top browns and inside is warmed through, about 25 minutes. Let cool slightly before serving.

Serves 4-6

1 1/2 lbs. raw jumbo shrimp (16-20 count), peeled, with tails left on
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
2 tblsp. extra virgin olive oil
salt and pepper
cocktail sauce

Heat oven to 450 degrees. In a large bowl, toss shrimp with garlic, olive oil and salt and pepper. Spread on baking sheet in a single layer. Roast for 3 minutes, then turn and roast another 2-4 minutes or until shrimp are opaque and firm. Transfer to a shallow dish. Cover and refrigerate. When thoroughly chilled (2 hours or more), serve with cocktail sauce.


1. I'm grateful for the night away with my husband. We stayed at the beautiful Sherwood Inn in Skaneateles, New York (finger lakes region)--look for photos in my next blog post!
2. I'm grateful that it wasn't 32 BELOW ZERO (swear to God!) again here this morning--took a walk in balmy 10 degree temperatures, and was so grateful for the "warm-up"
3. I'm grateful that we were able to take a trip to Smith's Restaurant Supply in Syracuse on our way home from Skaneateles-stocked up on new baking sheets, monkey bowls and other kitchen necessities. Like 2 kids in a candy store, we were!


  1. YUM! Have to try this one for sure Leslie! Deb

  2. Too Cute Leslie! Love the new look and LOVE the recipe. Im going to make that one for our little get together! Sounds awesome!! I agree with Carrie... I have font Envy too! It's adorable. Makes my blog boring! lol

  3. Here's a third member of the font envy crew!

  4. I love the font, and I love the pictures. The only criticism I can give (and I have been out previewing houses all day, so I am warmed up for feedback! ha!) is that the verbiage at the top is hard to read because of the photo it's on top of. Is there any way to put a banner at the bottom of the picture for those of us whose eyes are going? That would be my only suggestion...you know I love your blog, sistah!
    ~~Debra G.

  5. Love the new look and the recipe looks wonderful. Can't wait to try it out - even without the excuse of Superbowl!