• Appetizers,  Flavors,  Mexican,  Recipes

    Chipotle Salsa

    Chips and salsa are big in our house, so I’m always trying to come up with new versions. I made this salsa for the boys’ first night home from college – Mexican is always their favorite meal – and they all loved it! Of course with three college boys in the house, the whole batch of salsa, and the bag of chips, was gone by the next morning! Chipotle Salsa Author: Kate Wagner Serves: 3 cups Another reason I love this recipe? It’s so quick and easy to make! The salsa would also make a delicious topping to grilled chicken, seafood or steak. Happy cooking! Ingredients 2 (14.5 oz) cans…

  • Appetizers,  Recipes

    Zaxby’s Sauce

    My five years in Brentwood, Tennessee were wonderful in countless ways…beautiful surroundings, a warm and close-knit community, incredible schools, wonderful people and Zaxby’s. I love Zaxby’s! I don’t eat fast food often, but Zaxby’s is one of my favorites. Every time we head to Charleston, Jeff knows that we have to swing by Zaxby’s on the drive from Charleston to Kiawah. What makes Zaxby’s my favorite is the sauce. It is sooooo good. Having a Zaxby’s craving? Try my version, it’s lightened up a bit, but totally delish! Zaxby’s Sauce Author: Kate Wagner Serves: 1 1/2 cups I lightened this recipe up significantly but there’s still mayo. If you want…

  • Appetizers,  Flavors,  Recipes,  Sauces,  Spanish

    Romesco Sauce

    A quick Romesco sauce makes the most delicious topping for steak, as well as grilled chicken, roasted shrimp or a appetizer plate. I love my version because you get to skip the roasting of the peppers and instead just crack open a jar. You definitely need a food processor to whip this sauce up, but it couldn’t be easier to pull together, and keeps great in the fridge for up to a week. Perfect for a Spanish-inspired dinner! Romesco Sauce Author: Kate Wagner Serves: 2 cups There are lots of Romesco recipes that call for red peppers and tomatoes…I developed this one to be simple and quick (hello jarred roasted…

  • Appetizers,  Recipes

    Smoked Paprika Dip

    In my on-going fascination with yogurt dips I came up with a delectable combination of smoked paprika and shallots. Jeff ranked this as one of his two favorite dips that I’ve created thus far. Not only is this dip perfect for your weekly veggie plate, it’s also yummy with chips, smothered on sandwiches and as a dipping sauce with grilled or roasted chicken. Smoked Paprika Dip Author: Kate Wagner Serves: 1 1/2 cups When you cook with yogurt you do lose the thickness of the dip, but I figured out how to make sure you have a “dip-able” dip. All you have to do is make any yogurt dip one…

  • Appetizers,  Recipes

    Cheese Wrapped Olives

    If cheese straws and cocktail olives had a baby it would be this appetizer. While I can’t imagine piping out cheese straws, my very average baking skills are totally sufficient for wrapping olives in dough. Olive fans must try this recipe – a large pimento-stuffed olive wrapped in a cheesy, garlic-y dough – absolutely delicious and super-easy to make. It occurred to me the other afternoon as I was standing in the kitchen assembling these, that this is the perfect kind of cooking project to do with kids, a few more sets of hands would really speed this up…and when I make this appetizer for just Jeff and me, as…

  • Appetizers,  Recipes

    Roasted Baby Potatoes with Bacon-Chive Topping

    I often talk about my potato obsession, so these little loves are right up my alley. They are easy to prepare, can be assembled ahead of time, fit the one-bite cocktail app rule and they are delicious! I kept these simple with bacon and chives, but go crazy and change the flavor profile – how about feta, pine nuts and oregano? These potatoes were part of Jeff and my little Oscars viewing party and they were so good…I had the leftovers for lunch today! Roasted Baby Potatoes with Bacon-Chive Topping Author: Kate Wagner Serves: 30 appetizers These are a great option for a do-ahead app. You can roast the potatoes…

  • Appetizers,  Recipes

    Blue Cheese Dip

    Whole milk Greek yogurt is my secret ingredient to create healthy and delicious dips. Once you see how easy it is to whip up a quick dip, I hope you will be inspired to keep a veggie tray in your fridge – you’ll have a nutritious snack to enjoy anytime. My children are the kid-exception…they are not dippers, so they can tear through a veggie plate with the best of them, but they leave the dip for the adults. I love having Jeff try one of my dips and after he tells me how yummy it is, I can reveal that it’s actually good for him! Blue Cheese Dip Author:…

  • Appetizers,  Mexican,  Recipes

    Homemade Tortilla Chips and the Best Ever Nachos

    Jeff and I had so much fun working on this recipe together. I finally figured out the perfect kind of cooking for us to do together – any tasks that have a high rate of repetition and precision – he excels with that type of stuff! We got off to a rough start because I had meant to buy corn tortillas for the nachos, but out of habit picked up flour tortillas. But my sweetie came to the rescue by putting a tiny slit in each tortilla wedge, that one step means your chip doesn’t puff up too much. We made these for Super Bowl, and oh my goodness…with Spicy…

  • Appetizers,  Recipes

    Radish Dip

    This dip is currently taking a spin in the fridge on my family’s veggie plate and it’s a big hit! Not only is this healthy dip a great choice as a veggie dipper, it’s also a terrific party appetizer. I developed this recipe after seeing radish butter in one of my favorite Southern cookbooks, The Lee Brothers’ Simple Fresh Southern. This recipe takes that idea and gives radishes the starring role in a creamy yogurt dip. I know not everyone likes radishes, but please give this a try. The radishes give the dip body and texture, but fresh dill is the predominant taste. While I love to serve this dip…

  • Appetizers,  Mexican,  Recipes

    Grilled Salsa

    In all the years I’ve been cooking I have to confess I never made salsa. I really only made Mexican food for my clients, and if we were having Mexican at home I would pick up a great salsa at the store. That was before I found myself feeding college kids, because what do college kids love more than Mexican food? Nothing! So, a few weeks ago while looking for some recipe inspiration, I stumbled across a recipe for grilled salsa. That immediately caught my attention because I was going to be grilling Mojo Pork Tenderloin for tacos (that recipe coming soon) and I would already have the grill going. Below…