Category Archives: Appetizer

Caprese Salad

Guess what I did a few days ago?

tj's grocery bag

Yep, a trip to Trader Joe’s!  After I talked about it last time, the idea became stuck in my head and I just had to make a quick trip over there.

TJ's Groceries

I purchased lots of new-to-me products so it was yet again another successful trip!  I found myself the most excited about the following:

  • Buffalo Jerky – a little bit sweet & spicy and very tender
  • Coconut Chips – crunchy little strips of dried coconut; would be very tasty in a trail mix!
  • Coconut Oil Spray – makes using coconut oil much less messy
  • Roasted Frozen Corn – can’t wait to whip up a Mexican corn dip with easy, pre-roasted corn
  • Individual Frozen Basil Cubes – just pop em out and throw in soups, sauces, pasta, etc.
  • Espresso Pillows:

espresso pillows

As usual, I always snag an impulse buy while at the register checking out and these did not disappoint!  A hint of chocolate, toffee and coffee.  I’ve been keeping these guys in my desk drawer at work for when my sweet tooth kicks in!

caprese salad ingredients

I also picked up a giant container of fresh basil (for cheap!), vine ripened tomatoes, and fresh mozzarella.

caprese salad3

In a matter of minutes, these ingredients came together for one of my very favorite salads.

caprese salad6

I don’t know what it is about this combination, but I absolutely love it!  Fresh ingredients are the key!

caprese salad5

I also love the addition of avocado but unfortunately, I had a bum avocado so I had to do without.

caprese salad4

Obviously, this isn’t my recipe but I couldn’t help sharing such a perfect dish for summer.

caprese salad

Ingredients:

Fresh tomatoes

Fresh mozzarella

Fresh basil

Olive oil

Salt & pepper

Directions:

Slice tomatoes and mozzarella about 1/4-1/2 inch thick.  Alternate layers of tomatoes, mozzarella and basil.  Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt & pepper, to taste.

caprese salad3b

Seven Layered Greek Hummus Dip

There has been a lot of snuggling going on around here lately.  I mean, up until Monday night I hadn’t seen my puppy in 5 whole days!  That’s a long time, if you ask me.

Mac2

Okayyyy, so maybe he’s not technically a puppy anymore.  In fact, we made a pit stop in Petsmart the other day and he weighed in at a whopping 90 lbs!  Probably seems like a lot (and it is!) but I would’ve bet money he was on the heavier end of the 95-100 lb range.

Mac

Speaking of Big Mac’s….

katie text

And in case you can’t see that microscopic photo…

huge lap dog

I could not stop laughing at this picture!  Probably because of how much it relates to me and Mac.

Seven Layered Greek Hummus Dip

So my oven is still broken, sadly.  But it hasn’t stopped me entirely from cooking or making delicious food.   So today, I have a yummy dip recipe for you!

greek dip 6b

Quite similar to the concept of a layered taco dip, except with all the flavors of a Greek salad chopped up and layered over creamy hummus.  Perfect for scooping up with crispy pita chips!

seven layered greek hummus dip

Ingredients:

1 container hummus (any flavor will work, I used roasted garlic)

About 1/4-1/3 cup of the following:

  • English cucumber, finely chopped
  • Red/orange bell pepper, finely chopped
  • Kalamata olives, pitted and halved
  • Feta cheese, crumbled
  • Scallions, finely chopped (chives or shallots would work too)

1 tbls fresh dill, chopped

Directions:

Spread hummus evenly into a shallow container (I used a pie pan).  Layer cucumber, pepper, olives, feta cheese, and scallions, and sprinkle fresh dill over the top.  Serve with pita chips or crudités.

***

As my sister-in-law, Nikki, pointed out a couple weekends ago, it’s a very festive dip!  Not only is it super easy to throw together in 10 min or less, it’s very fresh-tasting and healthy.  It’s an excellent appetizer to make-ahead for a party to incorporate something lighter than your traditional cheese/cream/fat laden dips you normally find at parties.

Enjoy! 🙂