Mozzarella Cheese Sticks

Mozzarella Cheese Sticks HomemadeI will be come out and be honest about something, and that is, I order out food about once a week for the family. This typically includes one of three establishments, and one being our local pizza joint, Crossroads II. Crossroads II has really great pizza, and my kids love their cheese sticks. So, with that said, I wanted to make them cheese sticks, as I already make some pretty awesome pizza. A recent conversation with my mom also sparked the desire to make these, as she said they made them and they were pretty awesome. Keep in mind that this appetizer is super easy to make and doesn’t take but a few minutes to cook.

Ingredients:

  • Spring Roll wrappers
  • String Cheese
  • Oil
  • Deli salami or ham optional
  • 1 egg, beaten

Ok, so the wrapper is pretty important here. I use a particular brand, and would recommend the spring roll wrapper as it is thin, and provides a great crunch. Lay out your wrapper, lay a slice of ham or salami up near you, place a piece of string cheese on top, and begin to roll. Once you are nearing the end, brush on your egg, fold in both sides, and continue to roll over to make a tight seal. Continue this process for however many cheese sticks you want to make.

Heat a large enough pan of oil so that the cheese sticks fit comfortably, and bring this to a medium to high heat. Cook the cheese sticks for nearly 3-5 minutes, just enough so that they are golden brown. Overcooking will result in an exploded cheese stick so be careful.

Let these cool for a few minutes before eating, and serve with your favorite sauce. Let me tell you, my kids gobbled these up. Enjoy.

Cheesy Potatoes

Over the course of the last several years, my sister-n-law brings these cheesy potatoes to holiday gatherings. She brings the dish because they are really good. I normally get my fill on these potatoes and I am fairly content until she serves them for the next gathering, however this past weekend I had a true craving for them. My father-n-law invited us for dinner, for what he coined ‘the last night to grill’, this past weekend, and I offered to bring a dish, and that dish being a potato. Now I thought for a few minutes, until I thought of the cheesy potatoes. Cheesy potatoes, with my twist on them.

Cheese Potatoes

Ingredients:

  • 2 bags of Ore-Ida Southern Style Hashbrowns, frozen
  • 1 can cream of chicken soup
  • 1 can cream of onion soup
  • 1 large onion chopped
  • 3 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 jalapeno, seeded and chopped
  • 1 cup of french fried onions
  • 1 1/2 tbsp Salt
  • 1 1/2 tbsp Pepper
  • Milk (enough to build a nice texture with the canned soup)
  • 6 tbsp of butter
  • 2 dollops of sour cream
  • 4 cups of finely shredded four cheese blend

In a large pot, add the cream of soups and roughly 2 1/2 cups of milk, and slowly whisk to bring it together.  Continue cooking on medium heat, and add the butter. Get a large bowl ready because you will add the potatoes and combine everything in this bowl before transferring it to your large casserole dish.  To the potatoes add it all in, reserving a cup or so of the cheese to add in later, and mix well.

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Butter a large casserole dish. Add the bowl of potatoes to the casserole dish and cook for roughly 2 hours, covered. Add the remaining cheese to the top, and place under the broiler to crisp up the cheese and potatoes for a few minutes.

Remove from the oven, and let cool for about five minutes as these are piping hot. These cheesy potatoes are so good that you will probably want them not only for a snack, but also for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. These served 9 with two days of leftovers. Great for a large gathering. For a kick, top with bacon.

Cheesy Potatoes
 
Ingredients
  • 2 bags of Ore-Ida Southern Style Hashbrowns, frozen
  • 1 can cream of chicken soup
  • 1 can cream of onion soup
  • 1 large onion chopped
  • 3 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 jalapeno, seeded and chopped
  • 1 cup of french fried onions
  • 1½ tbsp Salt
  • 1½ tbsp Pepper
  • Milk (enough to build a nice texture with the canned soup)
  • 6 tbsp of butter
  • 2 dollops of sour cream
  • 4 cups of finely shredded four cheese blend
Instructions
  1. In a large pot, add the cream of soups and roughly 2½ cups of milk, and slowly whisk to bring it together. Continue cooking on medium heat, and add the butter. Get a large bowl ready because you will add the potatoes and combine everything in this bowl before transferring it to your large casserole dish. To the potatoes add it all in, reserving a cup or so of the cheese to add in later, and mix well.
  2. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Butter a large casserole dish. Add the bowl of potatoes to the casserole dish and cook for roughly 2 hours, covered. Add the remaining cheese to the top, and place under the broiler to crisp up the cheese and potatoes for a few minutes.
  3. Remove from the oven, and let cool for about five minutes as these are piping hot. These cheesy potatoes are so good that you will probably want them not only for a snack, but also for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. These served 9 with two days of leftovers. Great for a large gathering. For a kick, top with bacon.

 

Pancit Bihon

Another simple dish that is easy to make is Pancit Bihon. This is another recipe my wife shared with me, and I have tweaked to make it my own.

Pancit Bihon Recipe

Pancit is very thin rice noodles. You can make them with meat and vegetables. My recipe includes the following:

  • 1 bag of Pancit Bihon
  • Olive or canola oil
  • 2 large carrots, chopped into small pieces
  • 2 celery, chopped the same size as carrots
  • 1 onion, chopped the same
  • Cooked chicken, shredded, chopped
  • Shrimp, shell or no shell (optional)
  • Salt, Black pepper

Soak the noodles in warm/hot water for nearly 30 minutes. This process softens the noodles. Be mindful that over heating these noodles will kill the dish.

Chop your vegetables and get them ready as this is a pretty fast process. Lightly oil a large wok or cooking dish. Add your vegetables and sauté for 8-10 minutes until they begin to soften. Add the chicken and shrimp (optional) and mix. Salt and pepper the mixture. Drain your noodles, however reserve a half cup of the water. Add the noodles to the mix and with a couple of large spoons, toss and turn to mix everything together. Add about 1/4 cup of soy sauce, and keep mixing. Add more pepper to your liking.

Taste and add more soy sauce, salt or pepper, if needed. Serve immediately. This dish is really good as a leftover as well.