Thursday, January 15, 2009

Party Time!

Throwing a Martin Luther King Jr. BBQ this weekend or an Inaugural bash of your own? Here are some recipe ideas.

I love love love the Food network. So of course I look to their website to get recipes I've watched the chefs make, or find new ones.

Citrus Champagne Punch
Most importantly you will need a cocktail for your guests to drink. Here is Emeril Lagasse's recipe for a Citrus Champagne Punch.


  • 2/3 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 2/3 cup superfine sugar
  • 1 cup vodka
  • 1/2 cup limoncello
  • 2 teaspoons vermouth
  • 1 (750 ml) bottle chilled dry Champagne or sparkling wine
  • Ice
  • Lemon twists, for garnish


Combine the lemon juice, sugar, vodka, Limoncello, and vermouth in a large nonreactive bowl and stir until the sugar is completely dissolved. Cover and refrigerate until chilled, 1 to 2 hours. Add the Champagne and stir to combine.

Next up: 6 Layer Dip


  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1(15-ounce) can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 (15-ounce) can pinto beans, drained and rinsed
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 cups lowfat shredded Cheddar
  • 2 ripe avocados
  • 1 jalapeno, stemmed, finely chopped, (with seeds for more heat)
  • 2 cups chopped romaine lettuce
  • 1 1/2 cups nonfat yogurt, preferably Greek
  • 1/2 cup fresh cilantro, leaves and some stems, roughly choppe d, plus more for garnish
  • 3 ripe medium tomatoes, diced
  • 5 scallions (white and green), thinly sliced
  • Baked tortilla chips, for dipping


On a cutting board, smash the garlic cloves, sprinkle with 1 teaspoon of the salt, and, with the flat side of a large knife, mash and smear the mixture to a coarse paste. Put the garlic, beans, chili powder, water, and olive oil in the bowl of a food processor and blend until smooth. Spread in the bottom of a 2 quart casserole or gratin dish, or in individual sized dishes, as desired.

Scatter the cheese over the beans. Halve and seed the avocados,

then mash with the jalapeno and another teaspoon of salt in a small bowl. Spread a layer of the avocado over the cheese, and then scatter the lettuce on top.

Mix the yogurt with the cilantro and then spread over the lettuce. Add a layer of tomatoes and finally scatter the scallions on top. Chill until ready to serve. Garnish with a few cilantro sprigs and serve with baked chips.

Guy Fieri's Big Bud's Beer Can Chicken

This recipe is not exactly for the novice griller. But enjoy- and remember if you dont like the recipe exactly as it is- feel free to experiment. You can always get rid of the bacon if you want a healthier dish.


  • 1 (2 to 3-pound) whole chicken
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon dried sage
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 tablespoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 cloves garlic, smashed
  • 1 (12-ounce) can beer
  • 1/2 pound bacon


Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Wash chicken with cold water and pat dry with paper towels.

Mix dry ingredients in small bowl. Rub 1/2 of the ingredients on inside cavity of chicken. Gently peel skin away from chicken and rub mixture into meat of chicken. Open beer can pour out about 1/2 cup. Drop the garlic cloves into the beer can. Place

chicken, open end down, over the beer can to insert the beer into the cavity. Place chicken, standing up, in large saute pan. Place 1/3 of the bacon in the top cavity of the chicken and drape the remaining 2/3 of the bacon down the outside of the chicken. Pierce the bacon to the chicken with toothpicks.

Place chicken in the oven for 10 minutes and then lower t

emperature to 325 degrees F and cook for another 1 hour, or until the internal temperature in the thickest part of the thigh reaches 165 degrees F on an instant-read thermometer.

Mmmm Dessert. Here is Paula Deen's Chocolate Chip Cookie S'mores


  • Canola oil
  • 3 bananas
  • 10 store-bought chocolate chip cookies (the larger the better)
  • 1 cup graham cracker crumbs
  • 1 cup small marshmallows
  • 1 cup chocolate chips


Preheat grill to medium-high heat. Brush grill with canola oil.

Cut the bananas in half, lengthwise and grill, skin side down just until warm. Remove warmed banana from the skin and cut again in half.

For assembly:

On a piece of aluminum foil, place 1 cookie. Top evenly with banana slices, marshmallows, chocolate chips, graham cracker crumbs and top with another cookie. Wrap foil around the sandwich and place on the grill until warmed through and melted.

Here are some great tips from the Food Network if you plan to have a wine and cheese party!

*Images and recipes thanks to*

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