Appetizer

Swedish Meatballs

If anyone offered you blood pudding, sick would you try it? My answer is most definitely NO. Blood pudding? Oh my gosh who wants to eat congealed blood? Well apparently I used to when I was little. I know. I find it disturbing, visit this too.

I grew up in Sweden, the place of seafood and blood pudding, both of which I will not eat now. Seafood I just don’t like and who knows if I’d like blood pudding anymore but I am not going to try it again!

There are some Swedish foods I do love, though, and Swedish Meatballs are definitely one of them. My mom makes these for Christmas and Easter and I think they are just the most amazing thing ever. And they’re authentic Swedish Meatballs since, you know, we lived there and all. I took step-by-step photos of my mom making them this past Christmas so I would know how to make them in the future! These are tasty with anything…I enjoy them with mashed potatoes, sandwiches, or just by themselves :)

First, whisk together the cream and breadcrumbs.

In a separate bowl, whisk the eggs and then add in the seasonings.

Add the egg mixture to the ground beef.

Add the cream/breadcrumb mixture to the meat.

Umm yeah…just use your hand to mix it all together. This is why my mom makes these hehe :)

Use a cookie scoop to make the meatballs a uniform size.

Bring a large pot of water to boil. Pick up the meatballs, roll them in your hands so they become spheres, and drop them in the water, about 10 at a time. Boil them until they float. This almost completely cooks them so that when you brown them in the frying pan, you don’t dry them out trying to cook them through.

Use a slotted spoon to bring the meatballs out of the water and into the frying pan (that you’ve coated with a nice layer of butter :)

Fry them up until they’re nice and golden brown! I love eating them when they’re hot out of the pan :)

We eat the meatballs with the meal, but I know some people make meatballs for appetizers. They’re good anytime and for any occasion, in my opinion :)

What are the strangest foods you’ve eaten?

Mine would have to be the blood pudding and chocolate covered cricket. Don’t judge me. I was young and naive for the first one, and the second one was for extra credit in science…and peer pressure just might have played a huge tiny roll in that ;)

Swedish Meatballs

Ingredients:

1 lb ground beef

1/2 cup plain breadcrumbs

2/3 cup heavy cream

1/2 tsp onion powder

1/4 tsp cinnamon

1 tsp salt

1 egg

Directions:

  1. In a small bowl, whisk together the cream and breadcrumbs. Let it sit so that the breadcrumbs absorb the cream and becomes like a thick paste.
  2. In a separate small bowl, whisk the eggs. Add the spices and whisk it up a little more.
  3. Place the ground beef in a large mixing bowl. Pour in the cream and egg mixtures. Use your hand (or I suppose you could use a wooden spoon) to combine everything up.
  4. Use a medium cookie scoop to measure out the beef mixture into uniform meatballs.
  5. Bring a large pot of water to boil. When the water is boiling, pick up a meatball and roll it in your hands until it forms a nice little sphere and drop it in the water. Repeat this with about 10 meatballs and leave them in the water for a couple minutes until they float.
  6. When the meatballs are done cooking in the water, use a slotted spoon to put the meatballs in a skillet where you’ve melted a tablespoon or two of butter. Cook the meatballs in the skillet until they’re nice and brown.
  7. Transfer the done meatballs to a container and repeat with the rest of the meatballs :)

I hope you enjoy one of my favorite foods ever!

Makes about 24 meatballs.

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Hot Spinach Dip

Yesterday I had my first Black Friday shopping experience! But I only went to Joanns…and it was 2pm…so there was a serious lack of greedy, pharmacy angry mobs. Don’t worry, troche I shoved several women looking at fabrics just for the experience.

Just kidding.

I had a 50% off coupon for one item and used it on a donut pan. I’ve wanted one for a while but I didn’t feel like spending the money on one. Finally this coupon gave me the perfect excuse. I’m trying to figure out what donut to make first. I’m determined to use this pan often. I want to make sure I get my $6 worth!

After my excursion at Joanns, infertility my sister and I went to see Breaking Dawn (insert middle school girls screaming here).

Here’s what I thought:

  • Taylor Lautner’s shirt was off within the first 15 seconds.
  • I didn’t notice Kristen Stewart’s rapid blinking during this movie…a huge improvement!
  • Kristen Stewart had emotion in this movie! Woah!
  • Rob Pattinson’s hair is kinda ridiculous…very poofy.
  • Rob Pattinson looks sorta cute when he actually smiles. Who knew???
  • They followed the book closely.
  • Best scene= wedding speeches. Hahaha oh Emmett and Charlie…Remind me not to let anyone give toasts at my wedding.
  • The movie had a good combo of well-done scenes and totally awkward scenes…kept my sister and me interested and laughing.
  • Werewolf scenes=awkward.
  • Taylor Lautner trying to sound angry=hilarious.

I think that pretty much sums it up! All in all, it way surpassed by expectations and I’m glad I went to see it. Will I ever watch it again? Meh it’s a possibility :) I see a Twilight marathon in my future once part 2 of Breaking Dawn comes out.

With no transition whatsoever…here’s spinach dip. I already shared the Pumpkin Pie dip I made for one of our Thanksgiving appetizers so here is the second dip I made. I have been wanting to make this for a long time and am glad that I finally got the chance to make it. Everyone really loved it :)

It’s funny that I like spinach dip because I don’t like most of the ingredients that go into the dip. But I really like it and this recipe was great. For some extra flavor and a bit of spice, I added red pepper flakes to the original recipe. The addition was definitely a good choice.


Hot Spinach Dip

Adapted from Skinnytaste.

Ingredients:

10 ounces frozen chopped spinach, thawed

1/2 cup sour cream (reduced fat works fine)

5 tbsp mayo (light mayo works fine)

1/4 cup Parmesan  cheese

1/4 cup cheddar cheese

1/4 cup chopped scallions**

1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese

1/2 tbsp crushed red peppers

Directions:

  1. Make sure your spinach is thawed (I ended up microwaving mine) and squeeze out all the excess water (I ended up using my hand to get all the water out).
  2. Combine all the ingredients in a medium bowl.
  3. Place the mixture in an oven-safe dish (I used a glass pie pan) and bake at 375 degrees for 20-25 minutes, until the cheese is all hot and melty.
  4. Serve right away with crackers, chips, veggies, or whatever you want :)

Note: The turkey was already in the oven and was baking at 325 degrees. So I squeezed the dip on the tray below the turkey and cooked at 325 degrees for 25 minutes which worked out fine!

**I went to Kroger late the night before Thanksgiving because I realized that I hadn’t put a lot of the ingredients of this recipe on my mom’s shopping list. I was wearing my polar bear Christmas pjs, teal boots, and a hoodie. Yep…I looked pretty cool. So I was searching for scallions and I couldn’t find them. I called my mom and asked if scallions are the same as green onions and she said no. So I asked this guy stocking shelves if they had scallions. He didn’t know so he went to get a produce guy. That produce guy was new there so he went to get another produce guy. And this guy said that scallions were the same thing as green onions. And he’s a chef so he should know. So I bought the green onions. And I looked it up when I got home. Scallions are actually green onions! What are not the same as green onions are shallots, which was causing the confusion. Then later that night, I had to go back to Kroger to pick up the ice cream I had forgotten. And then my mom realized she hadn’t purchased a pan for the turkey. I refused to go back out to Kroger so my dad went. So feel free to use scallions or green onions in this dip. But not shallots. Yep. I could have said all that in a couple words (scallions=green onions) but I thought you would enjoy reading this paragraph. :D **

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Pumpkin Pie Dip

Oh goodness! Are you guys still full from Thanksgiving dinner? I’m not! I woke up this morning and was huuungry. I was really wanting to eat some of this pumpkin pie dip on a waffle, web but my littlest sister ate the last waffle! Oh well :) Some other time.

How was your Thanksgiving? Mine was really good.I spent the day with my parents, audiologist sisters, and grandparents which was really nice. We made our Thanksgiving dinner and ate around 2:30. We then went on our traditional post-big-meal walk (it was such a beautiful day!) and then we came home and watched Elf and ate pie! Watching Elf on Thanksgiving has become a family tradition and is the perfect way to kick off Christmas. My family loves Elf…we quote it all the time :)

I really enjoyed cooking. I was in charge of the appetizers, a side, and a pie. My middle sister always makes the deviled eggs so I decided to make Pumpkin Pie dip, Hot Spinach Dip, and then we had cheese and crackers, too. I’ll share all the recipes I made (because everything turned out great) but I’m sharing the Pumpkin Pie dip first. I’ll be posting a lot of Thanksgiving recipes the next few days, but you can certainly make them for occasions other than Thanksgiving…they’d be great everyday, party, or Christmas desserts as well!

I settled on making this dip last minute and didn’t know how it would taste. But I really liked it! My family doesn’t really like pumpkin pie, so it’s not a dessert we usually eat, but they all liked this. This dip was super easy to make and was very light and sweet with a slight tang from the sour cream. The blend of spices with the pumpkin make it a perfect seasonal appetizer or dessert. I served it with graham crackers and apple slices which was really tasty.

I got the recipe from The Girl Who Ate Everything. I made some substitutions to make the dip a little lower in fat and calories, but it certainly didn’t taste like it! You can certainly use full-fat cream cheese, sour cream, and cool whip if that’s what you have at home (no judging…calories don’t count on holidays, weekends, birthdays, or days with vowels), but I promise the dip doesn’t taste light at all! We have a lot left over so I’ll be enjoying it the rest of the week. Maybe I’ll get another chance to eat it on waffles! I will make this again, perhaps for Christmas :)

Pumpkin Pie Dip

Recipe adapted from The Girl Who Ate Everything :)

Ingredients:

One 8 ounce package of 1/3 reduced fat cream cheese

1 1/2 cup powdered sugar

1 cup canned pumpkin

1/2 cup reduced fat sour cream

1 tsp. cinnamon

2 tsp. pumpkin pie spice

1/2 tsp. ground ginger

1 cup frozen lite cool whip, thawed

Gingersnaps, apple slices, or cinnamon graham crackers for dipping

Directions:

  1. In a large mixing bowl, beat together the cream cheese and powdered sugar.
  2. Add in the cup of pumpkin puree, sour cream, cinnamon, pumpkin pie spice, and ginger.
  3. Fold in the cup of thawed cool whip until incorporated.
  4. Keep it in the fridge until ready to eat!

Makes…umm a big bowl. We had 7 people munching on it and we didn’t even make a dent.

Enjoy!

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