Buffalo Shrimp and Blue Brie Polenta

We’re partnering with Castello cheese for a Summer of Blue! You’ll want to stock up on some cheese once taste this Buffalo Shrimp and Blue Brie Polenta!

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There are things I definitely know now, a year and a half into cooking for our web site. It’s amazing how much you can learn in a short time, from simple recipes to more difficult ones. The difficult ones that I thought – man, I could never make that. But once I did I realized it wasn’t so hard after all.

This is one of those recipes. Those recipes you look at and say “Wow, that looks great but I couldn’t make that”.

Well, believe me, you can. This Buffalo Shrimp and Blue Brie Polenta is way easier to out together than it looks. You’ll be surprised, trust me.

Even if you think you don’t love blue cheese – I’ve got the right one for you. It’s Castello Saga Blue Brie. This Blue Brie is exactly what it sounds like. A creamy brie combined with blue cheese running all though it…It’ll change your mind about blue cheese. And if you love blue cheese I promise you’ve never tasted one like this.

Let’s grab some cheese and get started!

This is my twist on shrimp and grits. A spicy, cheesy version of shrimp and grits on baked polenta squares.

You start out by making the polenta. It’s really easy – just stir together chicken broth, water, milk, cornmeal and some salt and pepper in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil.

Crumble in a whole package of Castello Saga Blue Brie and stir it into the polenta.

 

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Once the cheese melts into the polenta, pour it into a greased 9″ x 13″ baking dish and bake for 30 minutes.

 

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While the polenta is baking you can start putting together the buffalo shrimp.

Heat up some olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add in a pound of shrimp, season with garlic powder, salt and pepper and let cook for a minute or two on each side until they are just turning pink.

Pour in your favorite buffalo wing sauce, a couple tablespoons of butter – and another big piece of the blue brie to stir into the sauce and make it creamy.

 

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When the polenta comes out of the oven, let it cool to room temperature and cut into large squares. The polenta can be done ahead of time too, cut into squares and then just warmed up in the oven before dinner time.

Spoon the buffalo shrimp over the top of a polenta square, making sure you get tons of the creamy buffalo sauce all over the top so that it soaks into the polenta.

Unbelievable. Having a dinner party? Done. Dinner for the family? Done. I’m not kidding when I tell you my kids went nuts for this so don’t be afraid to have them try it. You can even use a mild or extra mild wing sauce so it’s not blow your head off hot – it’s totally up to you!

Let’s dig in!

 

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Buffalo Shrimp and Blue Brie Polenta
 
Author:
: 6
Ingredients
For the Polenta
  • 1½ cups cornmeal
  • 2 cups water
  • 1½ cups milk
  • 2¾ cups chicken broth
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ t. salt
  • ½ t. ground black pepper
  • 1 5.11 oz. package Castello Saga Blue Brie
For the Buffalo Shrimp
  • 1 lb. medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • ½ t. garlic powder
  • ½ t. salt
  • ¼ t. ground black pepper
  • ½ cup buffalo wing sauce
  • 2 T. butter
  • 2 oz. Castello Saga Blue Brie cheese
  • 6 chopped scallions for garnish
Instructions
  1. Preheat your oven to 375 degrees.
  2. In a medium saucepan, add the chicken broth, water, milk, cornmeal, garlic powder, salt and pepper. Stir and bring to a boil, then turn the heat down to a simmer and cook for 12-15 minutes, stirring often.
  3. Crumble in the blue brie cheese and stir until the cheese is completely melted.
  4. Pour into a greased 9" x 13" baking dish and place in the oven for 30 minutes. Let cool completely while you start the shrimp.
  5. Heat up the olive oil in a large non-stick skillet over medium-high heat. Add in the shrimp and season them withe the salt, pepper and garlic powder. Cook for 2 minuets on each side until they are just turning pink.
  6. Pour the buffalo wing sauce into the skillet and then add the butter and the 2 oz. of cheese. Stir until the sauce is warmed through and the cheese is melted.
  7. When the polenta is completely cooled, cut into 9 large squares.
  8. Place one square of polenta on a plate and spoon the shrimp and sauce over the top. Garnish with chopped scallions.

 

Italian Meatball Stuffed Mushrooms

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser but all opinions her are mine.
#BackYourSnack #CollectiveBias

If you need a quick and totally impressive appetizer, these Italian Meatball Stuffed Mushrooms are your answer!

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I love apps. A whole meal consisting of all appetizers is totally up my alley. So when I heard about the Farm Rich Back Your Snack Contest, I knew it was something I had to try. What you have to do is use one #FarmRich frozen snack product plus one Walmart fresh item to make a snack or appetizer. You can get the details here…hurry and check it out, the contest starts August 1st.

Anyone can enter this contest – anyone – and you should all try because the prize is $10,000!

One of my absolute favorite appetizers to eat (and make) are stuffed mushrooms. So I thought of taking Farm Rich Italian Style meatballs as using that as the base of my stuffed mushroom filling.

One of the easiest ways to get my shopping done is to head out to Walmart. Especially when there’s a fresh section in your Walmart…you’ve got this.

I grabbed a couple boxes of mushrooms and some spinach and then ran over to the frozen section…

 

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There were a lot more Farm Rich products to choose from than I thought there would be, but I saw the meatballs so I grabbed ’em and ran.

 

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When you get home, cook the meatballs according to the package directions, let them cool, chop them into small pieces and set aside.

Next grab a skillet to start the filling. Add some chopped onion and red pepper to sauté for about 5 minuets.

Then get a ton of that fresh spinach, give it a rough chop and add it to the skillet. You’re going to need about 6 packed cups of spinach – It’s going to seem like a lot but it cooks down to nothing.

Add the meatballs to the skillet and stir together with the filling to combine. Remove the pan from the heat and get your mushrooms ready for stuffing!

 

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If you’re a mushrooms washer – wash away. I’m a mushroom washer. I know you’re not “supposed” to because they say it does something horrible to the mushrooms but I really don’t find that it ever does. And it’s a heck of a lot quicker than trying to “brush” the dirt of all those mushrooms with a towel.

Totally up to you.

Snap the stems of and get them on a baking sheet.

Now that the filling has cooled a little, add in grated parmesan cheese and the cream cheese. Stir it all together and start filling your mushrooms…

 

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Drizzle a little olive oil over the mushrooms and get them in the oven. They’ll only need about 15-20 minutes to get the filling warmed through and the mushrooms nice and soft.

 

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Total knock out flavor here – the Farm Rich Italian Style Meatballs are perfectly seasoned already, then combined with the fresh spinach and cheeses – you really can’t go wrong. This is definitely an appetizer that will impress your friends and family…and go ahead…let them think that you spend hours in the kitchen cooking. I’ll won’t tell!

 

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If you want to check out the demos of the contest finalists, from 9/19-9/20 and on 10/10 and 10/11 check out the list of stores here.

 

Italian Meatball Stuffed Mushrooms
 
makes about 30 stuffed mushrooms
Author:
Ingredients
  • (1) 24 oz. package white button mushrooms, cleaned and stems removed
  • (1) 28 oz. bag Farm Rich Italian Style Meatballs (you'll only use half of the bag)
  • 6 packed cups of Marketside Baby Spinach (from an 11 oz. package) roughly chopped
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • ½ cup diced onion
  • ½ cup diced red bell pepper
  • ¼ cup cream cheese, at room temperature
  • ¼ cup shredded parmesan cheese, plus 2 tablespoons for garnish
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
Instructions
  1. Bake ½ of the package of the meatballs according to the package directions and set aside to cool.
  2. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
  3. In a large skillet, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add in the onion and red pepper and cook for five minutes, stirring, until softened.
  4. Add the chopped spinach to the skillet, along with the salt, pepper and garlic powder. Stir and cook for another 3-4 minutes until the spinach has cooked down.
  5. Place the meatballs in the skillet and stir to combine with the filling. Remove from the heat to let cool for five minutes. After the filling has cooled you can add the cream cheese and the parmesan cheese to the skillet and stir.
  6. Put your mushrooms on a baking sheet and start stuffing with about a tablespoon of the filling.
  7. Drizzle the tops of the mushrooms with olive oil and bake for 15-20 minutes until the mushrooms have browned and the filling is bubbling.
  8. Garnish with the extra 2 tablespoons of parmesan cheese.

 

Peach Jalapeño Margarita

It’s National Tequila Day and we’re celebrating with this fresh Peach Jalapeño Margarita!

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Not that I ever need a reason to break out the tequila for cocktails…but a whole day in celebration of tequila definitely calls for a party.

This isn’t just your average frozen margarita recipe, I wouldn’t give you anything just average now would I? This margarita isn’t actually frozen. It’s a way to make a frozen margarita ahead of time if you’re having a party and don’t want to be stuck pressing blender buttons all night long. Because if you’re friends are anything like mine…you need to make the cocktails in bulk.

The other thing about frozen margaritas is that literally half of the drink is ice. Who wants that? Not me. Not Christie. Like when you order a frozen margarita at a restaurant and you keep taking sips to see if you can actually taste the alcohol? I know you’ve all done that – but you won’t have to with these margaritas.

What you do to make this Peach Jalapeño Margarita is make a peach base for the drink. The base is fresh (or frozen but defrosted) peaches, jalapenos, a little water and honey. Give that a blend until completely smooth and stick it in the fridge. I used Hornitos Black Barrel tequila for my margarita because it’s actually aged in a whiskey fashion that adds whiskey notes to the finished tequila. That’s a winner tequila for me – if you haven’t tried it you should definitely check it out.

 

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Then when it’s cocktail time you pour some of the “base” into a cocktail shaker with tequila, triple sec and crushed ice and shake it like crazy. You can pour it over ice or straight into the glass if you don’t want any ice to water your drink down.

That’s the key to this margarita – no watering it down! I still like it cold and refreshing but let’s leave it at that. Tequila, fresh peaches and a little jalapeño to spice it up.

 

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Peach Jalapeño Margarita
Serves 4
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Print
For the peach base
  1. 6 fresh peaches, washed and sliced
  2. 1 large jalapeño, roughly chopped
  3. 1 tablespoon honey
  4. 1 lime juiced
  5. 1/4 cup water
For the Drink
  1. 1/2 cup of peach base
  2. 2 1/2 oz. tequila
  3. 1/2 oz. triple sec
  4. 1 lime wedge
Instructions
  1. Make the peach base by adding all the ingredients for the base into a blender. Blend until smooth then pour into a pitcher and place in the refrigerator until ready to use.
  2. To make the margarita, add 1/2 cup of the peach base to a cocktail shaker filled with crushed ice, along with the tequila, triple sec and a squeeze of the lime wedge.
  3. Shake vigorously and pour into a glass filled with ice, or drink straight up!
Notes
  1. If you're using frozen peaches you'll need a 1 lb. bag, defrosted.
Mantitlement http://www.mantitlement.com/

Mariano Rivera Golf Classic

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July 20th 2015 marked the 2nd Annual Mariano Rivera Golf Classic & Dinner at the spectacle Trump National Golf Club in Briarcliff Manor, New York. And guess who was there? That’s right – me. Me hanging out with some of the Yankee greats at one of the most beautiful golf courses in the world.

Trump National Golf Club has recognition of an exclusive five-star establishment deemed to be of excellent quality receiving the International Star Diamond Award which is the most prestigious emblem of achievement and quality in the world.

 

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This course is amazing to look at but also extremely challenging. The real highlight of this course is the par three 13th hole with a 101 foot waterfall behind the green. At a cost of 7 million dollars it’s the most expensive golf hole ever constructed.

 

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The list of guests included John Franco, Willie Randolph, Roy White, Ken Singleton, OJ Anderson, Carl Banks, Paul O’Neil, Bobby Valentine, Gene Michael, Larry Holmes and Pedro Martinez just to name a few.

But the highlight of my day was volunteering as the spotter for the par three 15th hole which featured a 2016 F-Type black convertible Jaguar sports car for anyone that could sink a hole in one. The most exciting drive of the day came from Pedro Martinez, who came seven feet from winning that car…so just to give you a little background about Pedro that day…he shows up to the golf outing without golf shoes, no clubs and in his words “very little golf knowledge.”

Well wouldn’t you know Pedro sinks a birdie from seven feet out and then was so excited about it that he starts jumping up and down cheering and gives me the biggest high five and – wait for it – a hug. Now it was 92 degrees that day and being a huge Yankee fan I can tell you that it sure wasn’t a cold day in hell but what better way to meet Boston Red Sox pitching ace then like that? And truly one of the nicest guys I met that day. Congratulations Pedro!

Wait did I just say that?? I did. And I mean it – he was a great guy.

 

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The night was capped off with a dinner hosted by the voice of the New York Yankees, Michael Kay. An auction to raise money for Mariano Rivera’s Foundation & Refuge of Hope featured many different sport memorabilia and extravagant dinner experiences in the tri-state area, opened to the highest bidder. I was so glad I got to help support the Mariano Rivera Foundation which is a community oriented organization with emphasis in youth oriented programs. Stop by his website and check it out if you would like to make a donation, it’s for a great cause!

That’s me and Mo. This one’s definitely going up on the wall!

 

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Heading to the Brickyard with Crown Royal

I know it’s only Sunday but I can’t wait for next weekend to get here…I’ll be heading to the Brickyard with Crown Royal!

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Is there ever a good excuse to miss your wife’s birthday? This might be it. Crown Royal has invited me to attend a weekend of fun at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway while they honor the winner of the “Your Hero’s Name Here” program. The program honors everyday heros that make an impact in their community. There were 5 finalists but the winner this year is U.S. Marine Jeff Kyle.

 

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Jeff Kyle is a 37 year old U.S. Marine Corps Sergeant from Lorena, Texas who served 2000-2008 in the infantry and reserves. While serving with the 3rd Marine Division, Kyle received the Navy Achievement Medal for leading the first Marine detachment to transport a nuclear submarine through hostile waters. During his time in the military, Kyle was deployed to Iraq twice, Africa and several other locations overseas. When Kyle retired from the Marine Corps in 2008 he says, “My military career didn’t start until I left because now I am able to truly serve my country through helping my fellow brothers.”

Jeff Kyle is one of the founders of Texas Elite Tactical Academy where he trains individuals about firearms safety. He is also a board member for the Guardian For Heros Foundation that supports veterans with disabilities in many different ways.

And not like that wasn’t enough but Jeff also has a large role as a board member for American Valor which is a foundation that runs the memorial benefit to honor his brother CPO and U.S. Navy SEAL Chris Kyle. It’ll be an honor for me to be able to be a part of a weekend that’s honoring a guy like this.

Crown Royal also has a lot planned for all of us once we get there starting with a weekend long scavenger hunt where I’ll be teaming up with other bloggers to complete tasks like kissing the famed Yard of Bricks, finding an interviewing a NASCAR star and mixing up a Crown Royal cocktail.

I can tackle any one of these bottles and make a cocktail but my favorite lately is the Regal Apple. So crisp and smooth, not like any other apple flavored whisky I’ve tried before. Hopefully they have a bottle or two of that when we get there!

 

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*photos courtesy of Crown Royal

Who’s got me for a winner in that one? Everyone who knows me know how competitive I am so friendly fellow bloggers beware…

I’m also going to have access to pit boxes, Victory Lane and even a pace car ride!

Like I said, even Christie gave me a free pass to miss her birthday for this weekend. Don’t worry, we’re having one of her 10 birthday parties early this year…

Stay tuned this week coming up for my tweets and Instagram updates – follow with me using hashtags #JeffKyle400 and #CrownRoyal.

Wish me luck!