Friday, June 3, 2011

Recipe of the Week: Keno Night! (Chuy's Creamy Jalapeno Dip & Mexican Cheese Puffs)

I missed my recipe experiment for last week, but made up for it when I hosted a Keno party at my house for my Mops group. Keno is a very similar to Bingo except the cards contain pictures of playing cards instead of numbers. Everyone brought gifts to be won as prizes, so we played several rounds. Before playing, we had a simple taco salad buffet for dinner with taco meat, lettuce, black beans, chopped tomatoes and bell peppers, sour cream, grated cheese, Chuy's Creamy Jalapeno Dip, two kinds of salsa, Mexican Cheese puffs, homemade Sangria, and tea. For dessert, there was a fruit sampler with fruit punch dip, and puff pastries cut in half to provide the option for fruit sandwiches. We all had a fun time!

Chuy's Creamy Jalapeno Dip

1-Pkg. Hidden Valley ranch dressing mix
1-Cup milk
1-Cup mayonnaise
1-Jalapeno (more if you want it spicier)
1 or 2-Serrano peppers
Handful of cilantro

Mix all ingredients in food processor. Refrigerate for 1 hour before serving. Serve cold with tortilla chips or vegetables.

Recipe found in 2009 ACF Women's Retreat Collection of Favorite Recipes.

From my experience:
I have always wanted to try this recipe, so my Keno menu created the perfect opportunity. Chuy's is an Austin Mexican food restaurant with amazing Creamy Jalapeno Ranch. It's so good it's not just reserved for salad, people typically eat it with chips. For this occasion, we doubled the recipe making it in a blender. My friend Kim, shown in the picture who graciously helped me host, used 2 jalapenos and 3 serrano peppers, and it was pretty spicy. To cut it we added more cilantro and another 1/2 cup of mayo, making the total of mayonnaise in our recipe 2 1/2 cups. We also used light mayonnaise, which consequently gave the dressing a sweet flavor. To fix that we added two heaping tablespoons of sour cream. Afterward, it was perfect! You can be the judge if it tasted like Chuy's version. I will definitely make this recipe again.

Mexican Cheese Puffs

1 Cup Bisquick
3 Tbs. chopped green chiles
1 Cup shredded cheese
3 Tbs. softened butter
1 Egg

Mix baking mix, butter, chiles, and egg well. Stir in cheese. Drop by spoonfuls 1 inch apart on lightly greased cookie sheet. Bake 10-12 minutes in 400 degree oven.

Recipe found in Recipes From the Heart, favorites collected through the generations Fellowship Baptist Church.

From my experience: This recipe was super simple. It reminded me of the recipe for sausage balls, which I'm sure you could fuse the two together to make an even yummier dish. I used the whole can (the largest sized-can sold) of green chiles; since I doubled the recipe, I used the larger-sized can. I doubled it just in case, and used whole-wheat baking mix because I had a friend coming that doesn't eat white flour. It tasted fine, but needed some salt. I sprinkled garlic salt into the mix after tasting the first batch from the oven. This recipe was a success. Enjoy!

Bonus recipe: Party Bowl Sangria

1 (1.5 liter) Red Sangria wine cube
1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 lb. strawberries, sliced
1 orange, sliced into thin rounds
1 lime, sliced into thin rounds
1 lemon, sliced into thin rounds
1 pineapple, peeled, cored and cut into bite-size pieces
1 cinnamon stick
1.5 liters club soda

1. In large punch bowl, combine all ingredients, except club soda.

2. Refrigerate for at least 3 hours to blend flavors.

3. When ready to serve, stir in club soda.

Recipe from Super Target.

From my experience: Above is my friend, Kelly posed sipping the sangria! I have made this recipe a few times, and each time it has turned out differently based on the wine I have used. This time I tried using a simple table red wine, cheap Yellow Tail cabernet sauviagnion, instead of Sangria wine. I doubled this recipe using two bottles, but only put one serving of the club soda into my mix. This time I tried, a 1.25 liter bottle of Crystal Geyser Natural Lime Flavor Sparkling Mineral Water, and the effect was awesome. It had no sugar, but cut the strong wine flavor in the sangria, so I will definitely use it again. Below is a picture of the gang getting ready to play.

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