Nacho Nose-Guard Bites

Source: Snack Food Association

These mouth-watering snacks are best served warm, with salsa, guacamole or sour cream. Be careful when seeding and chopping the jalapeños.

1/2 cup flour
1 egg, beaten
1/4 cup chopped jalapeño peppers
1/4 cup salsa
2 ounces jack cheese, finely shredded
1 cup crushed tortilla chips

Heat oil in deep fryer or Dutch oven to 375 degrees F.

Mix ingredients and roll into balls. Fry for 3 to 3 1/2 minutes until golden. Remove with slotted spoon. Drain on paper towels.

Oysters in a Pig Blanket

10 slices bacon, cut into 4 pieces
1 quart oysters, drained (about 40)
40 drops Louisiana hot sauce
40 drops Worcestershire sauce

Wrap each 1/4 slice bacon around one oyster. Secure with a wooden pick. Place in a 10 x 9-inch baking pan. Put a drop of hot sauce and a drop of Worcestershire sauce on each oyster.

Preheat the oven to broil. Broil for 10 minutes. Drain.

Texas Wontons with Spicy Guacamole and Sour Cream

Source: Paul Teal/Classic Gourmet

1 large ripe avocado
Cayenne, to taste
2 plum tomatoes
Salt and pepper to taste
1 pound hot Italian sausage
1 pound Monterey jack cheese, grated
4 ounces chili paste with garlic
3 scallions, chopped (green only)
2 tablespoons cilantro, chopped
Salt and pepper to taste
Egg roll wrappers

To make the guacamole, mash avocado meat and mix with cayenne, chopped tomatoes, and salt and pepper. Refrigerate until thoroughly cooled.

To make the wontons, brown sausage in skillet, breaking it up into small pieces; drain well. Allow to cool. Mix together sausage, cheese, chili paste, scallions, cilantro and salt and pepper. Brush an egg roll wrapper with beaten egg and place 1/2 ounce of stuffing in center. Fold over corner to corner to form a triangle and crimp the edges with a fork to seal. Flash fry in hot fat to golden brown and drain on a paper towel.

Serve immediately with guacamole, sour cream and/or salsa.

Uncle Jack Red Dogs

cocktail wieners or regular wieners, cut into bite-size pieces
1 cup catsup
1/4 cup light brown sugar
3 tablespoons Jack Daniels whiskey

Mix well and heat in microwave to mix and heat. Pour over wieners and serve with wooden pick.

Woozy Dogs

1 1/2 cups ketchup
1/4 cup bourbon
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 tablespoon minced onion
2 pounds all-beef hot dogs, cut into pieces

Cook ketchup, bourbon, brown sugar and onion until smooth. Add hot dogs.

Wing Dings

These are a Texas specialty!

1 cup beer
1/4 cup unsulphured dark molasses
1/4 cup creamy peanut butter
1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
1 1/2 tablespoons chili powder
Juice of 1 medium lime
1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
1/4 teaspoon aniseed, toasted and ground
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 dozen chicken wings

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a large baking pan or dish.

Combine everything except the wings in a large, heavy pan. Simmer them over medium heat 15 to 20 minutes, until they have reduced to a thick sauce. While the sauce simmers, prepare the chicken wings. With a butcher knife, remove the wing tips, then cut each wing in half at the joint. Add the wings to the sauce, and stir to coat them. Ladle the wings and the sauce into the baking dish. Bake for 25 minutes, then stir the wings in the sauce. Turn the heat up to 425 degrees F and bake an additional 10 minutes, or until the sauce glazes the wings.

Serve the wings hot with a ranch dressing, if desired.

Tri-Color Rajas

1/2 green bell pepper, seeded
1/2 yellow bell pepper, seeded
1/2 red bell pepper, seeded
3/4 cup Monterey jack cheese, shredded
1/4 tablespoon crushed red pepper
2 tablespoons ripe olives, chopped

Cut bell peppers into 6 strips each, then cut crosswise in halves. Arrange strips flesh side up on an ungreased ovenproof dish. A good way to arrange them is to visualize the plate in three triangles, the points being in the center. Arrange one color pepper on each triangle. Sprinkle with cheese, red pepper and olives. Set oven to broil and broil peppers about 3 to 4 inches from heat until cheese melts (about 3 minutes).

Taco Oysters

Many years ago, there was an immigration of Yugoslavians to Louisiana, where they settled along the mouth of the Mississippi River. Many became oyster fishermen. Since they are known by their nickname, Tacos, there are a number of oyster dishes also known by that name. This is one of them.

1/4 teaspoon lemon juice
Dash of Tabasco sauce
Salt and pepper (sparingly)
2 teaspoons tomato sauce
1/8 teaspoon granulated sugar
American cheese, finely shredded

Arrange oysters on the half-shell in a pie pan of rock salt. Prepare enough partially-cooked bacon so that there will be enough to cover each oyster with a bacon strip.

On each oyster, place the above ingredients. Cover each oyster with finely-shredded American cheese. Bake at 450 degrees F until oysters are done and curl on the edges and the cheese is bubbly (10 minutes or less). Garnish with parsley sprigs.

The Pueblo Indians of New Mexico have been making these for centuries. They serve them as a dessert for feasts and weddings.

Pueblo Chile Balls

1 cup chopped green New Mexican chile,
roasted, peeled, stems and seeds removed
1 pound lean ground pork
1/4 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup raisins
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs, separated
3 tablespoons flour
2 teaspoons salt
Vegetable oil

Brown pork; add onions, then sauté until onions are soft. Pour off fat as it accumulates. Stir in chile, raisins and sugar.

Beat egg whites until peaks form.

Combine flour and egg yolks and mix thoroughly. Fold egg-yolk mixture into whites until combined to form a batter. Roll about 1 teaspoon of the meat mixture in the flour and shape into a 1-inch ball. When all the meat mixture has been shaped into balls, dip the chile balls into the batter and deep fry at 350 degrees F until golden. Drain on paper towels.

Jalapeno Cocktail Pie

3 to 4 jalapeño peppers, seeded and chopped
1 large onion, finely chopped
1 garlic clove, minced
1 pound sharp Cheddar cheese, shredded
6 eggs, beaten

Sprinkle peppers, onion and garlic in a well-greased 9-inch square pan. Cover with cheese. Pour eggs over cheese. Bake at 350 degrees F for 30 minutes or until firm.

Cool and cut into 1-inch squares.

Little Clambakes

8 ounces cream cheese
1 (8 ounce) can minced clams
4 dozen buttery crackers (like Ritz)
1/2 teaspoon liquid red pepper seasoning
1 tablespoon bottled onion juice

Soften cheese in medium-size bowl. Drain clams, add to cheese with onion juice and red pepper seasoning. Mix well to blend (if making ahead, store covered in refrigerator). Just before serving, spread clam mixture on crackers, about 1 teaspoon on each. Sprinkle lightly with paprika, then place on large cookie sheets. Bake at 400 degrees F for 5 minutes, or just until heated through but not browned.

Garnish with sliced black olives and watercress leaves, if desired.

Fried Dill Pickles

1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup cornstarch
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup ice water
1 egg yolk
2 tablespoon pickle juice
8 medium to large pickles, sliced 1/4 inch thick
or use 4 cups drained dill pickle slices

Stir flour, cornstarch, baking powder and salt into large bowl. Make a well in center and add water, egg, pickle juice and stir at once. Stir with whisk to make smooth batter. Cover bowl and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

Heat at least 2 slices in batter to coat evenly and lightly. Fry without crowding in hot oil until golden and crisp, 1 1/2 to 2 minutes. Drain and serve at once.

Garlic Chicken with Chipotle Mayonnaise


3 tablespoons minced fresh cilantro
1 to 2 teaspoons coarsely ground pepper
6 cloves garlic, minced
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 pound skinless, boneless chicken breasts,
cut into 1 1/2-inch chunks

Chipotle mayonnaise:

1 canned chipotle chile
1/2 cup good mayonnaise
Juice of 1/2 lime (optional)

To make chicken: Heat broiler. Combine cilantro, pepper, garlic and salt in a wide pie plate. Add chicken pieces and coat them all over with the mixture. Place the chicken pieces on a lightly oiled, shallow baking pan and broil about 6 inches from the heat until cooked through, about 6 minutes.

To make chipotle mayonnaise: Meanwhile, chop the chipotle chile fine - it should become a rough paste. Stir it into the mayonnaise. If you want, add the lime juice to the mayonnaise. Serve with chicken pieces.

Serves 8

*You can serve chicken pieces on long skewers or put toothpicks in them to make them easier to pick up.

Green Chile Won Tons

1/2 pound Monterey jack cheese, shredded
1 (4 ounce) can chopped green chiles
Won ton skins

Mix cheese and chiles together and place 1 teaspoon of mixture on a won ton skin. Fold like an envelope. Fry in 2 inches of hot oil until brown. Drain.

Serve hot with guacamole.

Ham Balls with Hawaiian Punch Sauce

Ham Balls:

1/2 pound ham, ground
3/4 pound pork, ground
2/3 cup quick oats
1 egg, beaten
1/2 cup milk


1/3 cup firmly packed brown sugar
2 tablespoons flour
1 tablespoon dry mustard
2/3 cup Hawaiian Punch
2 tablespoons vinegar
6 whole cloves
1/3 cup dark corn syrup

Ham balls: Preheat oven to 350°F. Combine all ingredients and shape into 1-inch balls. Place on greased cookie sheet and bake about 20 minutes, or until browned.

Sauce: In saucepan, combine brown sugar, flour and mustard, mixing well. Add punch and vinegar and mix well. Add cloves and corn syrup. Over medium heat cook, stirring constantly, until mixture thickens and becomes clear. In chafing dish or crockpot, place ham balls and pour sauce over.

Serve with wooden picks.

The ham recipe can be shaped into a loaf and served as a main course with the sauce placed over the loaf about 15 minutes before it has finished cooking (1 hour at 350 degrees F) with extra sauce on the side.

Serves 12

Mexican Stuffed Cheese

1 (2 pound) round longhorn cheese
1 (15 ounce) can refried beans
1 (4 ounce) can diced green chiles, drained
1 medium tomato, seeded and chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 teaspoon oregano
1/4 teaspoon coriander
1/4 teaspoon Tabasco® sauce
5 corn tortillas
Tortilla chips

Using a grapefruit knife and spoon, hollow out cheese, leaving a shell about 1/2-inch thick. Reserve scooped out cheese. In medium saucepan, combine beans, green chiles, tomato, garlic, oregano, coriander and Tabasco® sauce. Cook until mixture is heated through. Set aside.

Pour oil 1/2 inch deep in large skillet. Cook each tortilla, one at a time, for a few seconds only. Drain and pat dry. Line a quiche or similar type pan with overlapping tortillas. Place cheese shell in center and fill with bean mixture. Cover with reserved cheese. Bake at 375 degrees F for 45 minutes.

Serve with tortilla chips.

Baked Reuben Dip recipe

1 cup grated Swiss cheese
1 cup drained sauerkraut
1/2 cup sour cream
2 teaspoons spicy brown mustard
1 tablespoon ketchup
2 teaspoons minced onion
1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, cubed
8 ounces corned beef, cut into small pieces
I like to add about 1/2 to 1 teaspoon caraway seeds

Combine all ingredients in glass baking dish. Cover and bake 30 minutes at 350 degrees F. Uncover and bake for an additional 5 to 10 minutes until golden.

Serves 4-6

Bagna Cauda (Hot Garlic and Anchovy Sauce)

This is a classic sauce for garlic lovers only from Piedmont, Italy. The name means “hot bath” and it is served in the same way as fondue, in a pot in the center of the table over a candle. Surround it with raw vegetables which are dipped into the sauce. Serve with plenty of red wine and crusty bread.

1/4 cup butter
5 cloves garlic, finely sliced
8 anchovy fillets in oil, drained
1 cup olive oil

Heat butter in the serving pot or a small saucepan and add garlic. Keep on low heat so that garlic does not brown. Add anchovies and stir well, then gradually add oil. Cook for about 10 minutes, over low heat, stirring constantly. Place on the table over a candle. Serve with raw vegetables such as sliced peppers, celery, fennel, cauliflower, broccoli, mushrooms and carrots.

Asiago Dip

1 cup mayonnaise
1/2 cup thinly sliced green onions
1/3 cup grated Asiago cheese
1/4 cup sliced mushrooms
1/4 cup sun-dried tomato sprinkles
8 ounces light sour cream
1 tablespoon grated Asiago
32 (1/2-inch) thick slices, diagonally cut French bread baguette, toasted

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Combine mayonnaise, onions, cheese, mushrooms, tomato sprinkles and sour cream in a bowl. Spoon into a 1-quart casserole. Sprinkle with 1 tablespoon cheese. Bake for 30 minutes or until bubbly.

Serve with toasted bread.

Mississippi Caviar

3 (16 ounce) cans black-eyed peas, drained
1/2 cup finely chopped green pepper
1/2 cup finely chopped red pepper
3/4 cup finely chopped hot peppers
3/4 cup finely chopped onion
1/4 cup drained, chopped pimento
1 garlic cloves, chopped
1/3 cup red wine vinegar
2/3 cup olive oil
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
Tabasco® sauce
Tortilla chips

Combine peas, bell peppers, hot peppers, onion, pimento and garlic. In a separate bowl, whisk together the vinegar, oil and mustard and pour over the bean mixture; mix well. Season to taste with salt and Tabasco® sauce. With a wooden spoon or potato masher, mash the bean mixture slightly. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Drain the “caviar” well and serve with tortilla chips.

Marinated Mushrooms

1 pound fresh mushrooms
6 tablespoons olive oil
3/4 cup dry white wine
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped
2 tablespoons chopped onion
3 tablespoons lemon juice

Place mushrooms in a glass or earthenware bowl.

Combine remaining ingredients in a saucepan and simmer for 15 minutes.

Remove from heat and pour over mushrooms. Cover and refrigerate for several hours or overnight.

Pork on Horseback

2 tablespoons prepared horseradish
2 tablespoons mayonnaise
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1/2 teaspoon salt
8 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
6 thin slices boiled ham

Beat horseradish, mayonnaise, Worcestershire sauce, salt and cream cheese until it reaches spreading consistency. Place 1 ham slice on a sheet of wax paper. Spread with 1/5 of horseradish mixture. Layer with remaining ham and horseradish mixture, ending with a ham slice. Wrap in wax paper. Freeze 2 hours or overnight.

Cut into small cubes. Spear each cube with a wooden pick. Let stand 1 hour before serving.

Makes 36 appetizers.

Scallops Ceviche

The lime juice “cooks” the scallops in this simple hot-weather favorite. You may substitute 1/2 pound of your favorite saltwater fish for the scallops.

1/2 pound scallops
Juice of 3 to 4 Mexican limes
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 ripe tomato, chopped
2 tomatillos, cleaned and chopped
1 fresh jalapeño, chopped
1 1/2 teaspoons chopped fresh cilantro
1 small clove garlic, chopped

Marinate the scallops in a shallow non-reactive bowl in lime juice for several hours until they turn opaque. Gently drain, then add the remaining ingredients. Serve in small bowls with crackers on the side.

Makes 4 small servings