Cooking for Independence…Day

American Flag - Double Knotted Apron

As Americans all around the world celebrate our independence today, we will be doing so by grilling, snacking, three-legged racing and shooting off beautiful firework displays. I want to wish everyone a Happy Independence Day but also a safe one. I have listed a few tips below to help prevent food borne illnesses during your celebration whether its a picnic, BBQ or snacking at your city’s center.

Tips:

  • Make sure you keep hand sanitizer on hand and use before each meal or snack. Hand to mouth contact is one of the number one causes of germ transfers so be sure to keep those digits clean.
  • When grilling or preparing any meat be sure to cook it thoroughly to kill any bacteria that the meat may harbor.
  • If you take cold or hot dish to a picnic or party keep the dish cold or hot by insulated bags and ice packs. If you don’t have any insulation to help with this simply take the food inside if the whether starts to affect the food’s temperature.
  • Use a new plate or platter each time you pick up new food to help prevent cross contamination.
  • Keep in mind when you are celebrating today that not everyone takes precautions when preparing food and use your judgement on what you decide to eat, drink or snack on. It can be the difference in a HAPPY HEALTHY FOURTH or a sickly fourth.

Enjoy today wherever you may be and remember to thank those who so graciously and selflessly fight for our freedom and our country.

GOD BLESS AMERICA! 

isly-happy-fourth-of-july-graphic

xo-M

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Summertime Potato Salad

Summertime Potato Salad - Double Knotted Apron

Looking for a summertime side to pair with your Fourth of July BBQ? This potato salad will make a great addition to any party or dinner you are planning. It’s simple, affordable and most importantly delicious!

What You’ll Need:

  • 7-8 medium red potatoes, diced
  • 1 stalk celery, finely chopped
  • 1 small apple, finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp onion, minced
  • 1/4 cup sweet pickle relish
  • 1/3 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/8 cup mustard
  • 1 tsp dried dill
  • salt
  • pepper

Rinse the potatoes and then dice into bite size chunks. Place in a medium size sauce pan and cover with water. Boil for ten minutes or until fork tender. Drain and spread out on a baking sheet to let cool. Place baking sheet in the freezer for about 15 minutes to cool faster.

Diced Potatoes - Double Knotted Apron

Prepare the apple, celery and onion by finely chopping each.

Potato Salad Ingredients - Double Knotted Apron

In a medium bowl combine the mayonnaise, pickle relish and mustard and mix well. Fold in the apple, celery, onion, and dill and add a pinch of salt and pepper to the mixture then blend.

Potato Salad Mix - Double Knotted Apron

Once the potatoes have cooled, fold in the mayonnaise mixture with a spatula.

Summer Potato Salad - Double Knotted Apron

Store in the refrigerator until serving. Don’t forget to garnish with paprika!

Enjoy!

xo – M

Memorial Day Munchies – THREE recipes in ONE post!

I am extremely excited about this post – it’s THREE in ONE! That’s right, three brand new posts and recipes all in one place! Aren’t you pumped?!  I am dedicating this post to Memorial Day and to help all you out there who are looking for a few easy treats to help “festive up” the festivities this weekend. Here goes nothing! In order of appearance, Memorial Day Munchies – Chocolate Covered Yummies, Corn Puppies and Berry Blue Coconut Rum Sippers. There is a little something for everyone and all of them are simple and easy to make.

Memorial Day Munchies - Chocolate Covered Yummies - Double Knotted Apron

Corn Puppies - Double Knotted Apron

Berry Blue Coconut Rum Sippers - Double Knotted Apron

Memorial Munchies – Chocolate Covered Yummies

First things first, let’s look over the ingredients list for this easy, kid friendly creation!

What You’ll Need:

  • 1 lb. Baker’s Chocolate (Almond Bark, I used two squares and made 12 treats)
  • 1 Go-Pack Mini Nutter Butters
  • 1 Go-Pack Mini Oreas
  • 1 bag Mini Pretzels
  • 1 bottle Red, White and Blue Sprinkles
  • Wax Paper

Memorial Day Munchies Ingredients - Double Knotted Apron

Alright, let’s gather the troops – are they any kids helping with this? Good! They will love it and can get messy at the same time. Let’s get started.

Step 1: Break apart the chocolate bark blocks (however much you would like to make. Remember, two squares for me made a dozen treats, so use that to help you calculate.) Once you have determined how much chocolate you want to melt place the squares in a microwave safe bowl. Melt for 1 minute in the microwave, stopping every 15 seconds to mash and stir. (I would recommend an adult doing this part since the bowl can get hot.)

Once the chocolate has melted, start step 2.

Step 2: Pick out a pretzels and either a Nutter Butter or Oreo to combine. Coat one at a time using a fork (or fingers) and then stack the cookie piece on top of the pretzel. Place the yummy creation onto a sheet of wax paper to let harden. Repeat this process until you have used all of the melted chocolate.

Memorial Day Munchies - Chocolate Covering - Double Knotted Apron

Step 3: This is probably the easiest step in the whole process – SPRINKLES!!!! Who doesn’t love sprinkles. Get creative and coat those yummies treats with as few or as many red, white and blue sprinkles as you like.

Memorial Day Muncies - Sprinkles - Double Knotted Apron

Step 4: Once the chocolate has hardened you can remove from the wax paper and store either in an air tight container or present these Chocolate Covered Yummies on a star-spangled platter and serve!

Memorial Day Munchies - Chocolate Covered Yummies - Double Knotted Apron

Enjoy – they are addicting!!!

Corn Puppies

Ah! I love these little guys. Could they be any cuter or tastier? Probably not. Now these are still easy, but will require hot cooking oil to make. Just take precaution around the youngsters if you have them. (Thanks!)

Note: This recipes has a lot of step-by-step photos, just a heads up!

What You’ll Need:

  • Hotdogs (I cut each hotdog into thirds, so however many people you are serving consider three corn puppies (or one dog total) per person.)
  • Wooden skewers or popsicle sticks
  • Vegetable oil (I used a mini deep fryer with about 2 inches deep of oil)
  • 1 cup yellow corn meal
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 cup milk (you can use buttermilk as well)
  • 1 egg
  • 4 tsp baking powder
  • pinch of salt
  • pinch of pepper
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp onion powder
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne (optional)
  • 2 tsp minced jalapeño (optional)
  • 1/2 tsp minced chives (optional)

Step 1: Start heating the oil either in a deep fryer or large cast iron skillet on the stove top. (Use caution whenever cooking with oil as it will get EXTREMELY HOT!!!) You can test to be sure the oil is ready for frying by placing the handle end of a solid wooden spoon in the oil to the bottom of the pan or cooker. If bubbles surround the spoon’s handle, it’s ready.

Step 2: Combine all of the dry ingredients except for the last three and whisk to blend. Add egg and milk and stir until completely mixed. Add in the cayenne, jalapeños and chives. Remember, if you don’t want the spice, you don’t have to add it.

Corn Puppies Batter - Double Knotted Apron

Step 3: Slice the hotdogs into thirds and the add wooden skewers or popsicle sticks into each piece.

Corn Puppies - Naked - Double Knotted Apron

Step 4: Dip each hotdog piece into the batter.

Corn Puppies - Pre Batter Dip - Double Knotted Apron

Step 5: Coat well and let excess batter drip off of the hotdog before frying to ensure an even coating and even cooking.

Corn Puppies - Batter Dip - Double Knotted Apron

Step 6: Slowly place batter covered hotdog pieces into the hot oil. (USE CAUTION.)

Corn Puppies - Pre Deep Fry - Double Knotted Apron

Step 7: Let fry for at least 1 minute or until golden brown. Rotate the skewer to ensure that the soon to be CORN PUPPY is cooking evenly. (Can you smell it!? That’s pure corn dog deliciousness right there.)

Corn Puppies - Deep Fry Time - Double Knotted Apron

Step 8: Remove from oil and let the corn puppy hang out over the oil for a second or two to let any excess drip back in the pan. These little guys are extremely hot, so let them cool before indulging in one. I know that will be hard, but trust me… scorched taste buds are no fun!

Corn Puppies - Post Deep Fry - Double Knotted Apron

Step 9: Alright my friends, the time has come. Take that long awaited and hard earned bite. DELICIOUS right?! I can’t wait to make more. 🙂

Corn Puppies - Take a Bite - Double Knotted Apron

Step 10: Either eat them all now or take out to the back porch or picnic with the next recipe and serve!!

Corn Puppies on a Stick - Double Knotted Apron

YUM! Enjoy and remember to share!

Berry Blue Coconut Rum Sippers

So these are for all your hard work whipping up the two tasty treats above. These can be kid friendly as well, just substitute the rum for water… yes, that simply means make jello. 🙂

What You’ll Need:

  • 1 package of Berry Blue Jello (or more than one pack depending on guests)
  • 10 plastic punch cups
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 1 cup coconut rum

Berry Blue Coconut Rum Sippers - Ingredients - Double Knotted Apron

Step 1: In a large glass measuring cup, boil 1 cup of water. Add boiling water to gelatin mix and stir until all of the mix has dissolved.

Berry Blue Coconut Rum - Add Boiling Water - Double Knotted Apron

Step 2: Pour in 1 cup of coconut rum and stir well.

Berry Blue Coconut Rum Sippers - Add Rum - Double Knotted Apron

Step 3: Pour the Berry Blue Coconut Rum mixture into punch cups. Place on a baking sheet and chill in refrigerator for 2 hours or until solidified.

Berry Blue Coconut Rum Sippers - Double Knotted Apron

Cheers and Enjoy! (Please Drink Responsibly.)

I hope you have enjoyed this THREE in ONE blog posting and love all of the yummy Memorial Day Munchies! Have a safe and happy weekend. Remember to thank those who proudly serve and have served our country! Thanks to them we can celebrate and enjoy our freedom with our family and friends this weekend.

GOD BLESS AMERICA!

Happy Memorial Day!

xo-M