Fig and Prosciutto Flatbread

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This week has been a doozy! I had to scale my salsa recipes to get a step process from the Cornell Food Science Center, meaning I had to make at least a gallon of each formula! My friends and husband are in heaven at the moment because they are reaping the benefits of my over-production.

I have been cooking dinner all week, but because I have been so busy during the day, I haven’t been able to photograph the meals and share them with you. If you follow my instagram stories, I told you all a while back that to blog about food you have to cook in the middle of the day to get good lighting.  Sure you can artificially create lighting with special tools, but I don’t have these tools, and since I do all of my own photography, it is a lot cheaper to use natural light.

Anyway, thanks to days becoming longer as the spring and summer seasons approach, I did manage to snap a couple of photos of things I have made this week. On Tuesday evening, I met up with a fabulous group of girls who are all fellow entrepreneurs in the Fairfield County area.  Many of these inspiring women own their own brands or shops, and others have highly successful lifestyle and travel blogs.  I am humbled by their achievements, but equally so inspired by their success.

We meet once a month usually and this month our hostess asked me to bring an appetizer. I wanted to make something tasty, but filling without being heavy. Sort of a unicorn of appetizers you might think, but this flatbread really hit the nail on the head.

What you need:

  • Store-bought flatbread or pizza crusts
  • Large Mozzarella Ball
  • Figs, quartered
  • Prosciutto, separated and chopped roughly
  • Aged Balsamic Vinegar or Balsamic Glaze
  • Olive Oil
  • Salt and Pepper to taste

Pre-heat your oven to 425F.

The beauty of using a pre-made flatbread is that it is a major time saver.  Of course you can do your own dough if you have the time, but as I mentioned, its been a crazy week!

Tear apart your mozzarella ball and spread it around the crust or flatbread.

Bake your flatbread on a pizza stone or directly on the rack for about 10-13min until cheese is melted and flatbread is crispy.

Add on your prosciutto and figs and drizzle over the balsamic glaze and olive oil.

Season lightly with sea salt and pepper and enjoy!

Happy Halloween!

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Halloween is the beginning of the most festive time of year. It really marks the beginning of Fall and the descent into the holiday season.  What is so fun about Halloween is that you get to dress up and go to/host a party or two and act like a kid again.

This year, we hosted a party, and I had a field day making Halloween inspired snacks.  So many of what I found online were sweet snacks, and I am definitely more of a savory person. I found a few of these ideas online and created the others, and almost all of them only require assembly.

These are really fun to do with kids also, so if any of you are having a party tonight, you only need to make a quick trip to the groceries!

We started with black olive bat pizza bites! The frozen bagel pizza bites only require warming in the oven, and all you need to do is cut a few pitted black olives in half and slice one half leaving the other whole to make these little guys! They’re delicious and fun!

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We then went for the finger pigs in a blanket.  These are also in your frozen aisle at the  grocery store, and all we needed to do was attach a slivered almond to the front to make it look like finger nails! So creepy, but the perfect spooky snack! Feel free to use a little ketchup to make them look bloody!

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Halloween stores have so many fun little props, and we bought a few fake fingers and eye balls and different things to spread around the house. But first, we used them in our “human” meat platter with various salami, prosciutto, and other tasty meats. I did this meat platter on a cake dish so that we could have it hanging off the side a bit to make it even creepier!

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Cheese balls are also a great party snack, and can more or less be molded into anything.  This one is a little less scary, but really cute none the less.  I rolled goats cheese in black sesame seeds to make a large cheese spider! I didn’t have pipe cleaners for legs, so I took advantage of the fact that I had straws. It’s always great when you can utilize what you have to do these things, so you don’t have to make too many trips around town!

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And finally the pièce de résistance, were the devilishly deviled eggs! These are the only thing requiring any amount of cooking and the recipe will follow.  These are Sriracha deviled eggs with red pepper horns! Not only were they delicious, but once assembled I could not stop giggling at how cute they were!

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What you need:

  • 12 hard boiled eggs
  • 4 tsp of Sriracha
  • 2 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 6 tsp mayonaise
  • 1 lime juiced
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 red bell pepper

After you have hard boiled your eggs, let them cool, then peel and halve them. Remove the yolk and reserve the whites.

Smash your yolks in a bowl and mix in the Sriracha, dijon, mayo, and lime juice.  Season with salt and pepper.

Put the mixture in a plastic bag and cut the corner so you can squeeze it into each egg white half.

Take strips of your red pepper and cut out your devil horns and apply them to each egg.  It does take a few minutes to do this, but the result is so worth it!

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These eggs have a little kick to them, but were really tasty!

Needless to say, have fun with your Halloween plans.  We don’t get too many chances as adults to act like kids again, and it is so important we seize these opportunities when we get them! You and your whole family will enjoy these snacks, and this way you can keep your kids from eating too many sweet treats this Halloween season!

 

Pepperoni Supreme Pizza

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As I have said many times before, life is about balance.  We eat lots of salads, veggies, and lean proteins most of the time, but man do we love pizza! James and I firmly believe more is more when it comes to pizza, and I love adding lots of veggies.

You might notice, I have yet to post a dessert on here.  The truth is, we don’t really eat sweets in the Burke house. Neither of us has a big sweet tooth, so part of our balance is avoiding desserts. Plus, I really don’t like to bake.  Baking is more measured and scientific, and I have always felt cooking is an unrestricted expression of creativity.

When making homemade pizza, you don’t need to be a hero.  Almost all grocery stores sell pre-made pizza dough either made by the grocery or made by a local Italian restaurant.  You can even get pizza dough from a lot of Italian restaurants or pizzerias.  The point is, it doesn’t need to take your hours to kneed dough and let it rise. The pre-made dough I bought just needed to sit out for 1-2 hours in a bowl, and then I could spread it out by hand.

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What you need for this pizza:

  • 1 ball of pizza dough
  • 2 cups pizza sauce (you can make or buy, put to you)
  • 2 balls burrata or mozzarella
  • 1/4 lb pepperoni
  • 1-2 jalapeños thinly sliced
  • 1-2 portobello mushrooms cubed
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes halved
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil for drizzle
  • salt and pepper to taste

Follow the instructions on your pizza dough.  Mine said allow to rise for 1-2 hours in an oiled bowl covered by a towel.

Pre-heat the oven to 450F.

Spread your pizza dough by hand or with a rolling pin on a lightly oiled baking sheet.

Cover the dough with as much sauce as you like, and then begin layering your toppings. Break up the burrata with your hands, and then layer on your meat and veggies. It is up to you how much or how little you want on your pizza.

Finally season with salt and pepper and drizzle with olive oil.

Bake in the oven for 10-12minutes on the bottom rack (keeping an eye on your pizza the whole time).

Remove from the oven and enjoy! The best part about using all fresh, high quality ingredients is that you don’t get the greasiness of delivery pizza, and you get to put any ingredients you like on it.

This is such a easy and affordable way to customize your pizza and save on some calories you would normally eat when ordering pizza. Plus you can get your kids involved, and it is a fun family activity!