Hosting a Super Bowl party can be a blast, even if your favorite team didn’t make it through the playoffs. You can make your party memorable by choosing a theme and asking guests to bring a dish inspired by one of the teams playing or the Super Bowl host city. You’ll get a variety of dishes and it’s a great way to try something new.
This year’s Super Bowl is especially interesting with San Francisco versus Baltimore. Not only are the opposing coaches brothers, the teams hail from opposite coasts. Look for menu items showcasing each city’s unique culture like Maryland-style crab cakes for Baltimore or a sourdough bread appetizer for San Francisco. Round out your menu with party staples like nachos and bean dip everyone will enjoy no matter who they root for.
What’s a party without Buffalo dip? This one is made with Randall great northern white beans and your favorite Buffalo sauce. It will be the easiest dish to prepare on your menu. Blend all the ingredients in a food processor or blender and refrigerate until party time.
Nachos are getting superstar treatment this year from food magazines and recipe websites with features showcasing how to create the perfect nachos. These chicken nachos are made using your slow cooker and fully cooked pinto beans. They are simple to assemble and will be gone before half time. You might want to make a double batch!
Crab cakes are quintessential East Coast cuisine. Even better? You can make this version in advance and refrigerate them until game time. Ready-to-use crab meat is available at most grocery stores and the other ingredients are household staples. Fry the cakes in a skillet and serve with seasoned mayo.
Everyone loves to snack on potato chips while watching football. To save money, make your own! These potato chips are sliced thin, boiled, then baked. You can create endless seasoning combinations, but our favorite to represent Baltimore is Old Bay Seasoning.
This recipe pairs crusty San Francisco sourdough bread with California-grown avocados. Fresh parsley pesto made with anchovies adds another layer of flavor to the smooth avocado and tart sourdough. Serve this for an easy alternative to guacamole.
Green goddess dressing is a creamy salad dressing that was created at the San Francisco Palace Hotel in the 1920s. This dip is heartier than its sister the dressing, so serve it with sturdy pita chips. The bright green color comes from a medley of fresh herbs and avocado. Anchovies are blended in for a kick of saltiness.
Soups and pastas are the foundation of our winter menu, but it’s time to lighten up with one of winter’s treats: citrus. Citrus’ peak season is the middle of winter which is a perfect relief from the unending cold. Grocery stores shelves are stocked with everything from grapefruits to clementines giving us an abundance of sunny fruits to choose from.
Citrus is a workhorse ingredient with multiple uses. You can use the zest for a punch of flavor to cookies or pasta dishes. Citrus juice makes a great marinade or dressing and the fruit segments add a tart and tangy taste to salads. This recipe calls for sectioning the citrus fruit. Cut away the peel and pith of the citrus with a sharp knife, then cut out the flesh between the membranes. You’ll be left with the membrane core which you can use for the dressing by squeezing the remaining juice into a bowl.
In our winter citrus and white bean salad, we use refreshing grapefruit and Meyer lemons. We add white beans and cooked white fish for filling protein and richness.
Winter Citrus and White Bean Salad
1 white grapefruit, sectioned
1 Meyer lemon, sectioned
1/4 tsp red chili flakes
1/4 cup Vidallia or sweet onion, finely chopped
1/4 cup seedless cucumber, finely chopped
2 scallions, chopped
1/4 cup fennel bulb, finely chopped
1/4 cup mint, loosely packed and finely chopped
1 cup baby spinach, coarsely chopped
1/4 tsp white pepper
1 cup Randall Great Northern Beans, not drained
1 cup cooked white fish, flaked
1/4 tsp. sugar
Segment both the grapefruit and the Meyer lemon. Squeeze the remaining membrane core to release the juices into a small sauce pan. Coarsely chop the fruit and set aside. Add the red chili flakes to the citrus juice and set over medium heat. Reduce until there is only one tablespoon of liquid left. Combine the liquid with the fruit and all remaining ingredients. Toss to combine and chill until cold before serving.
A slow cooker is a busy cook’s best friend. Throw your ingredients together when you wake up and let it go slow and low all day for a meal that tastes like you spent hours in the kitchen. Who doesn’t love that? It almost feels like cheating. Then there are the days where two 0′clock hits and you have no idea what to make for dinner. Using your slow cooker probably wouldn’t seem like an option, but it should be. The trick to using your slow cooker in the afternoon is pre-cooked ingredients and high heat. Your meal will be just as delicious with a fraction of the cooking time.
Food Blogger Sara Croft created this great northern beans with smoked turkey recipe for us. You can read her cooking adventures on her blog, Solid Gold Eats. Her blog is full of recipes, restaurant reviews and her dogs.
Slow Cooker Great Northern Beans with Smoked Turkey Legs
1 jar of Randall Great Northern Beans, rinsed and drained
2 tsp onion powder
1 box of chicken stock
2 fully-cooked smoked turkey legs
In your slow cooker, add the great northern beans. Arrange the smoked turkey legs on top and pour the chicken stock over them. Add the onion powder and give it a quick stir. Turn the slow cooker on to HIGH for 2 ½ hours. Take out the turkey legs and place them on a plate. Shred the meat and discard any skin, bones or noticeable fat. Add the meat back to the beans. Taste for seasonings and add salt and pepper if necessary. Stir and serve.
Soup is the ultimate comfort food. Versatile, soothing and warm, soup can help you relax after a long cold day while you long for the beach and sunshine. For those of us fighting the cold and flu this winter, sipping on a hot broth can be a lifesaver. Hearty soups are a complete meal in a bowl, leaving you satisfied and sometimes sleepy.
This pork and bean soup is savory and filling. The recipe calls for our hearty bean soup base and adds big flavor. The soup base is a sweet and spicy mixture full of sausage, bacon, great northern white beans and seasonings. Since you make the base beforehand and just add it to the rest of the ingredients, you’ll cut down on prep time. Smoked pork neck is available at most grocery or specialty store meat counters. The addition of both canned tomatoes and sundried tomatoes gives a deep sweet and acidic tomato flavor that blends with the smokiness of the pork for a rich, multi-layered soup.
Pork and Bean Soup Recipe
3 stalks of celery, chopped
2 cups of Vidallia or sweet onion, chopped
1 tbsp olive oil
3 cups of tomatoes, chopped
3 oz of sun dried tomatoes, finely chopped
2 smoked pork necks
2 cups of Hearty Bean Soup Base (click here for the recipe)
8-9 cups of water
In a large stock pot, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Saute the celery and onions until soft. Add the chopped tomatoes and continue cooking over medium-high heat. The tomatoes will release liquid while they cook down. Break up the tomatoes while they cook, until most of the liquid has evaporated. Add the chopped sun dried tomatoes, smoked pork neck, soup base and water. Stir to combine and bring to a boil. Skim off any surface foam and reduce heat to a simmer. Cover and stir occasionally and continue to skim off any foam. Ladle soup into bowls and serve.
When you’re making a meal on the fly, using prepared ingredients can save you time. You can create your own stocks and recipe bases on a weekend when you can spend the day in the kitchen. Set some of this recipe aside for a few meals early in the week and freeze the rest for future use. Just pop in a frozen cube or two to whatever you’re cooking for an added layer of flavor.
Our hearty bean soup base is a great starter for dips, a flavor booster for soups or as a spread for crostini. It’s full of layered flavors providing your recipes with additional richness. This recipe combines savory ground sausage and bacon for the foundation. Tomato paste, sweet onions and chopped dates give the recipe starter sweetness. Dry mustard, garlic, chipotle pepper power and red pepper flakes add spiciness complementing the sweetness of the tomato and onions.
Hearty Bean Starter
1 lb ground sausage, cooked
1 package apple wood smoked bacon, cooked
1 can tomato paste
2 tsp olive oil
1 Vidallia or sweet onion, coarsely chopped
9-10 dates, coarsely chopped
1 tsp dry mustard
2 tbsp garlic, minced
1 tbsp red pepper flakes
2 tbsp freshly ground pepper
2 tsp chipotle chili powder
2 tsp chili powder
48 oz jar of Randall great northern white beans, drained, rinsed and slightly smashed with a spoon
Brown the sausage in a large saute pan and transfer to a bowl lined with paper towels to soak up excess grease. Cook the bacon until crisp and transfer to a plate lined with paper towels to drain off the extra grease. Add the garlic and red pepper flakes to the pan with the bacon grease and cook until the garlic is golden brown and fragrant. Watch the pan to make sure you don’t burn the garlic. Add the garlic and red pepper flakes into your bowl with the sausage and bacon.
Wipe out the excess grease from your pan and heat the olive oil on medium-high heat. Add the tomato paste to the pan and cook stirring constantly until the dark red. Let the tomato paste cool. Place the sausage, bacon, tomato paste, onion, dates and spices in a food processor or blender and pulse mixture until well combined. Mix in the Randall beans and refrigerate at least an hour before freezing. Silicone ice cube trays are handy for freezing any portion you don’t use right away.
Let’s face it, with your hectic schedule, it can difficult to get home cooked meal on the dinner table at a decent hour. Between working late and running kids to activities it is easier, but not as healthy to pick up fast food on the way home or serve the same old chicken and a baked potato over and over again. Beans are a great way to add big flavor fast to meals. When you’re short on time and inspiration, try one of these simple recipes which will let you put dinner on the table in 30 minutes or less.
Shorten your preparation and clean up time with this simple one pot meat. Start with bottled barbecue sauce, tomato paste and ketchup to create a sweet sauce with big tomato flavor. Chicken sausage pulls double duty providing the protein as well as a kick of spice. Use our pre-cooked great northern white beans to add a creamy texture and another serving of protein. Sauteed collard greens give the dish a dose of hearty greens making this tasty and healthy. For cooking times and nutritional information click here.
Chili is traditionally a slow cooked meal reserved for weekends. This tortilla chicken chili is a quick fix and makes a great week night meal. The chicken is cubed so it cooks quickly and all of the spices come from a packet of pre-mixed chili seasoning. Canned corn, our pre-cooked pinto beans, and diced tomatoes all add texture and flavor to the chili without extra prep time. Top the chili with broken tortilla chips for a crunchy treat kids love. For cooking times and nutritional information click here.
Quick meals aren’t always the healthiest. You don’t have to compromise nutrition for convenience with this pasta favorite. This skillet meal combines healthy spinach with protein packed white beans. Canned tomatoes give the dish color as well as a bright flavor complementing the rich spinach and beans. Save time by boiling the pasta while the spinach, bean and tomato mixture is cooking. Garlic and Parmesan cheese add a punch of flavor. Serve over whole wheat linguine for a fast, filling, healthy meal. For cooking times and nutritional information click here.
Winter hit the Midwest hard over the head during the past week. Hopefully you had plenty of leftovers to eat while you were snowed in. A stocked pantry can keep you well fed if you don’t make it out for the bread, milk and eggs before a big winter storm. Essential items that don’t need refrigeration and have a long shelf life are going to be good bets. You’ll even see sections in cookbooks dedicated to pantry meals with recipes requiring only ingredients from your shelves.
Here’s a pantry checklist to brave any storm that will leave you snowed in.
- Various stocks – Chicken stock, beef stock or vegetable stock can be used for soups and stews. You can also use them to add flavor to rice or a pan sauce.
- Beans – Beans are a workhorse ingredient used to fill out recipes. They’re a great substitute for meat when you’re snowed in, provide protein, and contain nutrients making them a healthy choice for recipes. Pantry soups get a big boost in flavor and body from beans. If you lose power, many people even like to eat Randall Beans straight out of the jar.
- Dried pasta – Boxes of dried pasta in various shapes can be used to add body to a soup or in a casserole. If you have left over pasta, try it in a fritatta or baked pasta dish.
- Jarred sauces – Jarred marinara sauce is a handy ingredient. Instead of preparing the usual pasta and sauce, try stirring it into a soup or layering it with cheeses for a dip.
- Olive Oils – Olive oil is a great flavor builder in recipes and is healthier than butter and shortening. To make oils more interesting, flavor them with dried herbs or cloves of garlic.
Being prepared with pantry staples can keep meals interesting when you’re unable to make it to the grocery store. You’ll have more time to spend with your family playing in the snow instead of scratching your head trying to figure out what to make for dinner. Pair them with baking standards like flour, sugar and spices can go a long way in creating quality meals with a short list of ingredients.
Are you making New Year’s resolutions to take better care of yourself in 2013? Working out, getting more sleep, drinking more water and eating better are topping our lists. The holidays were a great time to indulge but now we’re ready to make the best of the new year.
Start off the new year right with this healthy vegan chili recipe. Vegan recipes are a great way eat well and still stick to those resolutions. You might be worried that with a vegan recipe you won’t feel full, but you won’t miss the meat. Pinto beans add hearty flavor, while slow-cooked mushrooms take on a meaty texture. Combine all that with big bursts of spices and you get a filling traditional chili without any of the fat or grease.
Our vegan chili is just as hearty and filling as traditional meat filled chili recipes. Mushrooms and pinto beans provide healthy protein and body. Red wine, sweet sherry and tomato paste add a robust flavor to the chili. Garlic, fennel and Vidalia onions add an earthiness and texture. Herbs de Provence, fresh thyme and toasted fennel seeds create a complex seasoning complementing the vegetables.
16 oz baby bella mushrooms, quartered
4 tablespoons olive oil
1/3 cup garlic, minced
1 fennel bulb, chopped
3 Vidalia onions, chopped
2 stalks celery, chopped
1/2 jalapeno pepper, chopped
1/2 cup red wine
1/2 cup sweet sherry
2 cups vegetable stock
5 sprigs fresh thyme
1 tablespoon herbs de Provence
2 bay leaves
1 tablespoon fennel seeds, toasted and coarsely ground
2 tablespoons tomato paste
24 oz Randall pinto beans, in their liquid
salt and pepper to taste
Heat the olive oil in a large pot. Brown the mushrooms in the hot oil. Add the minced garlic and continue to cook until the garlic is golden. Next add in the wine and sherry to the pot. Cook until the mixture is almost dry. Stir in the chopped fennel, onions, celery, and jalapeno pepper. Cook until the vegetables are soft. You’ll want to stir the mixture constantly to prevent burning. Add in the herbs and continue to stir until the herbs are fragrant. Next stir in the tomato paste. Cook for about one minute, stirring to incorporate. Add the pinto beans with their liquid and vegetable stock. Bring the chili to a boil and skim off any foam. Turn the heat down to a simmer and add salt and pepper to taste.
Serve the chili with rice and topped with fresh diced tomato and onions or with a side salad.
Your relatives have left and the house is finally quiet. As you clean up from the holidays, are you asking yourself what do to with all of the leftovers? The holiday ham was great and you’ve had ham sandwiches for a few days, but it’s wearing out it’s welcome. There are only so many ways to make ham sandwiches interesting. Ham and bean soup is the quintessential post-holiday meal. The soup is an easy way to use up your leftovers and freezes easily.
How to Make Ham Stock
To make the soup completely from scratch, use a ham stock. Homemade ham stock is simply made by boiling your ham bone with in a pot of boiling water for several hours. To make the stock more flavorful, add roughly chopped onions, carrots and celery. Fresh herbs such as sage, thyme or rosemary can be added as well if you have them on hand. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
After the stock is finished boiling, strain out all of the solids. If you’re using the stock immediately, rinse out your pot with water and return the stock to the pot to make the soup. If you won’t be using the stock right away, cool and refrigerate. Ham stock, just like ham and bean soup, can be frozen for up to a month.
Ham and Bean Soup
Ham and bean soup comes together quickly and can be altered to what ingredients you have on hand. Bring your homemade ham stock or a canned broth to a boil. Turn the heat to low and add leftover ham pieces and drained and rinsed beans. Simmer until heated through and you have the basic ham and bean soup. You can customize this base soup with vegetables such as carrots and celery. If you’re getting a jump start on a new year’s resolution to eat healthier, throw in kale or spinach at the end for added nutrition.
Ham and bean soup is one of those recipes that’s been handed down from generation to generation. Each family has their own way of make it. What do you put in your version of ham bone and bean soup?
Isn’t it great when you can wow your guests with a side dish? The addition of a trendy ingredient or unfamiliar flavor can take a recipe to the next level. Dinner guests will be wondering what the secret ingredient is and you’ll be smiling at their guesses.
Our Randall booze beans are definitely for adults only. Many dishes that include alcohol are fine for kids, because the majority of the alcohol is cooked out over time. But with our booze beans, the bourbon is added near the end of the cook time. While this means you get more of the rich, slightly sweet flavor of bourbon, it also means there’s no time for the alcohol to cook out.
The combination of smoky bacon and bourbon creates a rich and deep flavor creating a decadent side dish. Coffee adds an undercurrent of roasted flavor and complements the richness of the bacon and bourbon. Dry mustard and ground ginger give the dish a tangy brightness. Finally, the addition of pineapple, brown sugar and molasses add a punch of sweetness. Randall booze beans are a great dish to serve alongside roasted meats.
Randall Booze Beans
1 24-ounce jar Randall Great Northern Beans, drained and rinsed
1/8 pound sliced bacon
1 tablespoon dry mustard
1/8 tablespoon ground ginger
1/8 cup strong coffee or 1/2 tablespoon ground coffee
1/4 cup brown sugar
2 tablespoons molasses
1/4 cup Bourbon
4 ounces sliced pineapple
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cook bacon until crisp and drain, then let cool and crumble. Combine all ingredients except the bourbon and pineapple in a baking dish. Bake for 45 minutes. Remove from the oven and stir in the Bourbon. Arrange the pineapple slices on top and return to the oven for 25 minutes or until bubbly and the pineapple starts to brown.