Grapefruit Beer Bellini

grapefruit beer bellini1

It’s cocktail time!

I’m manning up the bellini cocktail here at Mantitlement today with my Grapefruit Beer Bellini.

Just another thing that I’ve decided would be better with beer. A bellini. Because everything is better with beer, right?

Just say yes…

And there’s still champagne in this bellini, prosecco actually, but it’s half beer and half prosecco. It’s the ratio that’s important – are you seeing a trend? I’m all about the right proportions of things as you know.

I think the important thing in this Grapefruit Beer Bellini is the actual beer that I used. One of my new favorite finds is grapefruit beer by Schofferhofer. Actually, the wife found it while shopping with a friend of hers…they did some free sampling and then loaded up the cart.

And then I took care of the drinking part just to make sure it was good.

I didn’t want to leave out the fruit puree that typically goes into a bellini. Not knowing what exactly a fruit puree was made of…I just threw some grapefruit slices in the blender, squeezed in the juice and added some sugar. Awesome. It could be the base for so many cocktails…peach with bourbon? That might be next.

grapefruit bellini process

Anyway, so the grapefruit puree goes in the bottom of your glass, then a few ounces of prosecco or champagne, then top it off with a grapefruit beer.

Surprisingly, this grapefruit beer is pretty easy to come by. I find it now pretty much everywhere I go, so don’t worry about not being able to buy it.

 And that’s about it! You can also set this out as a bellini bar like the picture above…put out your puree, the prosecco and the grapefruit beer and everyone can serve themselves!

 grapefruit beer bellini

Grapefruit Beer Bellini
Serves 2
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  1. 1 grapefruit, peeled and cut into wedges
  2. 1 T. sugar
  3. 6 oz. prosecco
  4. 1 grapefruit beer
  1. Place the grapefruit wedges without any peel into a blender with the tablespoon of sugar.
  2. Blend until completely smooth and set aside.
  3. Add a few tablespoons of the puree to the bottom of 2 champagne flutes or a beer glass.
  4. Add 3 ounces of prosecco to each glass, then top with the grapefruit beer.
  1. You'll have more fruit puree than you need for 2 cocktails, so a bottle of prosecco and a six pack of the grapefruit beer will go a long way.

Cheesy Artichoke Bread

 artichoke bread 1


However you want to serve this, as an appetizer or just for dinner, this Cheesy Artichoke Bread is going to be a hit at the dinner table!

Artichokes are way up there on the list of foods I love. I love them steamed or stuffed, most of all fried, (hard to believe I know) But I’ll eat them any pretty much any way I can get them.

So why not marinated artichoke hearts on a loaf of ciabatta bread covered in cheese? Yep. I’m in.

The wife and I were going back and forth on this, if we should make it a “dinner” recipe or an “appetizer recipe. Then we decided not to care and let you guys decide.

Then I suggested that we could make this bread as a “Meatless Monday” option! ‘Cause if I’m not getting meat for dinner, then I definitely want something covered in cheese.

Quick, easy, and tasty. Here’s what I did…

First, I put some olive oil, salt, pepper and garlic powder on each half and stuck it under the broiler for a couple of minutes to crisp it up so the bread doesn’t get soggy after you add the ingredients on top. 

Then I chopped up the fresh herbs and mixed them together in a bowl with the chopped up marinated artichoke hearts. Layered the artichoke mixture onto each half of the ciabatta bread, covering it all up good.

And a little parmesan cheese never hurts…

Then put on some sliced tomato and top it all with shredded mozzarella cheese. We used Cabot shredded mozzarella for our Cheesy Artichoke Bread, it melts really well and I like the flavor the better than a lot of other shredded cheese.

 tomato layered bread

Now just throw it under your broiler or bake it in the oven for a few minutes and you’ve got a delicious, cheesy bread dinner.

Or an app. Your call.

cheesy artichoke bread2


Cheesy Artichoke Bread
Serves 4
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
7 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
7 min
  1. 1 1/2 c. marinated artichoke hearts, drained and chopped
  2. 2 T. fresh basil, chopped
  3. 2 T. fresh parsley, chopped
  4. 4 T. grated parmesan cheese
  5. 1/4 t. garlic powder
  6. 2 c. Cabot Shredded Mozzarella cheese
  7. 1 large tomato, sliced thin
  8. olive oil
  9. salt and pepper
  10. 1 large loaf of ciabatta bread
  1. Preheat your broiler.
  2. Cut the loaf of ciabatta in half lengthwise and place the two halves cut side up on a baking sheet.
  3. Drizzle the bread with a little olive oil and season with salt, pepper and garlic powder.
  4. Place under the broiler for 2 minutes, just until the bread gets crispy.
  5. Take out and let cool.
  6. Add the basil, parsley and artichokes to a small bowl and mix.
  7. Divide the artichoke mixture in half and spread onto each half of the bread.
  8. Add 2 T. of parmesan cheese to each half, total of 4 T.
  9. Layer the sliced tomato onto each half of the bread.
  10. Top with the mozzarella cheese.
  11. Place back under the broiler for 3-4 minutes, or bake in a pre-heated oven at 450 degrees for 5 minutes.
  12. Let cool slightly and slice.

Zucchini Pasta Sauce

Zucchini Pasta Sauce Close

Got a few hundred zucchini laying around? This Zucchini Pasta Sauce is the answer.

This sauce is not only awesome tasting, but it uses three whole zucchini in the recipe. Because (as the wife says) there’s nothing worse than when you’re searching for a way to use up 10 huge zucchini that you have from your garden (or thankfully in our case a friend’s garden) and you finally find a recipe and it calls for a half of a cup of shredded zucchini.

This recipe came from our friend’s at Family Kitchen Ravioli and again, it’s outstanding. You could use this sauce on any pasta, tossed with a little parmesan cheese – dinner in 10.

You can easily adjust tis recipe to your liking, too. We added a little crushed red pepper flakes to our sauce for a little heat in the background, and you could definitely cut back on the cream if you wanted too…we did not, but if you wanted too.

And just because we had a few more zucchini left after making the sauce, we roasted some up in a sheet pan with some salt and pepper and a little olive oil to add to our plates. Zucchini overload but in the best way!

 zucchini roasting

So have your friends keep growing their zucchini and handing it over when they’re overflowing, you can give them back a batch of this sauce for all their hard work!

 zucchini pasta sauce3


Zucchini Pasta Sauce
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  1. 3 medium zucchini, chopped
  2. 1 medium onion, chopped
  3. 4 cloves of garlic, chopped
  4. 4 T. butter
  5. 1/2 c. heavy cream
  6. 2 c. chicken broth
  7. bay leaf
  8. 2 sprigs of fresh thyme
  9. 2 T. fresh parsley, chopped
  10. 2 T. fresh basil, chopped
  11. Salt and pepper to taste
  1. Melt the butter in a large sauce pan and cook the onion, garlic and zucchini for 15-20 minutes until the zucchini is soft.
  2. Add in the cream, stir and simmer over low heat for 5-10 minutes.
  3. Season with salt and pepper to taste, then puree with s stick blender until smooth.
  4. Add in the parsley and basil, stir to combine.
  1. You can also puree the sauce in a blender, just let the sauce cool then work in batches, only filling the blender 1/3 of the way full each time.

Family Kitchen Ravioli



While I was running some errands a few weeks ago, I came across Family Kitchen Ravioli in Flanders, NJ.

I go by this place all the time and I had never been in before so I decided to go in and take a look. And I was glad I did.

I met the owner, Paul, who was one of the nicest business owners that I’ve run into. You can tell this guy really loves what he’s doing because the ravioli he makes is amazing.


The wife and I went for a behind the scenes look at his ravioli making process, hair nets and all. It was amazing how much quality product they were turning out in a small space.

They were making the cheese ravioli while we were there which Paul says is probably the most popular.

ravioli machine

He gave us a fresh sheet to take home, right off the line, so we could sample it that night. Cheese ravioli is fine, not usually my most favorite thing since a lot of times you order it and it can just be bland. I have to tell you, there was zero blandness about these cheese ravioli. The filling was well seasoned and the ricotta they use is top of the line. It’s called Impastata, which I had never even heard of (Christie hadn’t heard of it either so I didn’t feel so bad).

They have tons of specialty flavors to choose from too. Smoked Mozzarella and asparagus, Chipotle Shrimp, Lump Crab Meat with dill and cracked pepper…just to name a few. And of course the standards, cheese and meat.

One of the flavors we did take home was the Mac N Cheese Ravioli. This I had to try. So what did I do with them?

Fried ‘em.

Unbelievably good. Fried Mac N Cheese ravioli, what could be bad about that?

They were pretty easy to make, especially when you buy the Mac N Cheese ravioli already done!

Boil up the ravioli…

Chill them…

Bread them with flour, eggs and panko…

ravioli breaded

Then fry them up!

All 12 ravioli were gone in an instant. I mean, an instant. The kids were dipping them in marinara sauce which was good, but I liked them plain. Just the fried, crispy Mac N Cheese Ravioli for me. You could easily do this with cheese ravioli, too, just in case you don’t live near Family Kitchen Ravioli!

But if you are in the North Jersey area and have a chance to visit Family Kitchen Ravioli, tell them Dan sent you – and buy a whole bunch of ravioli to take home with you. You’ll be glad you did!

fried mac n cheese ravioli2


Fried Mac N Cheese Ravioli
Serves 2
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  1. 12 Mac N Cheese ravioli (can substitute plain cheese)
  2. 1 c. flour
  3. 2 eggs beaten with a tablespoon of water
  4. 1 1/2 c. panko bread crumbs
  5. canola or vegetable oil for frying
  6. grated parmesan cheese for garnish
  7. marinara sauce for dipping
  1. Boil the ravioli for 3-4 minutes. Drain and lay out on a plate to cool so they don't stick together. Chill in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.
  2. Bread the ravioli in the flour first, then the egg wash, the the panko breadcrumbs. Lay out on a plate and repeat with remaining ravioli.
  3. Chill the breaded ravioli for another 30 minutes.
  4. While the ravioli is chilling, pour enough oil in a deep sided pot to come up about half way. Heat on medium heat to 375 degrees.
  5. Fry the breaded ravioli in batches for 4 minutes, turning over after 2, then drain onto paper towels.
  6. Garnish with parmesan cheese and serve with marinara sauce if desired.

Watermelon Cosmo

watermelon cosmo2 This Watermelon Cosmo is a fresh summer twist on the classic cosmopolitan!

My wife and her family are always drinking cosmso’s, my father in-law has become an expert at making them in assembly line fashion. Every holiday at their house it seems like that’s all he’s doing is making more comopolitan’s.

Since it’s watermelon week, I added fresh watermelon juice to a cosmopolitan in place of the cranberry juice – and it was a success! Not as tart as the cranberry juice so I held back a little on the triple sec which is also sweet and added a little more fresh lime juice instead.

You could totally make these up ahead of time, too. Like in large amounts so you don’t have to play bartender all night! Then when you’re ready just add a serving to your shaker with ice and shake them up individually.

I used Three Olives Watermelon Vodka for these Watermelon Cosmos, of course, but you can use plain vodka if you don’t have any, it’ll just be a bit stronger tasting. Not that that’s a bad thing at all…

 Three Olives Watermelon shadow


If you’re only making one or two, all you have to do is take about a half a cup of fresh watermelon cubes and place it in the bottom of your cocktail shaker. Muddle the watermelon until it’s almost all liquified and then add your ice and the booze. Shake it up well then strain into a martini glass.

If you’re making a pitcher of these for a crowd you can add the watermelon into a large pitcher, muddle it, add the booze and then just stash it in the fridge. Then when you’re ready, pour about a cup into your martini shaker and serve individually.

For our family though, there no point in making one or two – the pitcher will be coming out for sure! WaterCosmo

Watermelon Cosmo
Serves 1
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  1. 2 oz. Three Olives Watermelon Vodka
  2. 1/2 oz. triple sec
  3. 1/2 cup of fresh watermelon cubes
  4. 1 large wedge of lime
  1. Muddle the fresh watermelon in the bottom of a cocktail shaker until it's mostly liquified. Add in some ice, the vodka, the triple sec and then squeeze in the lime wedge.
  2. Shake well and then strain into a martini glass.