Jimmy Dean® Sausage Balls

These tasty sausage balls can even be made ahead of time, and frozen. Just thaw and bake when you need them…but you may not want to wait that long!

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Make-ahead Jimmy Dean® sausage balls – a perfect appetizer for the holidays.

Ingredients:
2 (16 ounce) packages Regular Flavor Jimmy Dean® Pork Sausage
(Sage pork sausage is also a good choice)
1 1/2 cups all-purpose baking mix, such as Bisquick®
4 cups shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
1/2 cup finely chopped onion
1/2 cup finely chopped celery
2 teaspoons black pepper
2 teaspoons minced garlic (optional)

 

Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 375° F. Combine all ingredients in a large mixing bowl; stir well. Form into 1 inch balls. Place on ungreased baking sheet; bake 18-20 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from oven; cool 5 minutes before removing from pan. Serve with cocktail forks or  toothpicks.
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National Meatball Day – March 9th

On March 9th, we celebrate one of the American food holidays. It is National Meatball Day.

It is not clear how this day got started, but who could resist the idea of celebrating National Meatball Day? There are many different ways to celebrate meatballs: Spaghetti and meatballs – Swedish Meatballs – Meatball Sub. – Meatball Pizza – Turkey Meatballs – Lamb Meatballs – Porcupine Meatballs (made with rice) – and the list goes on and on.

There is a restaurant in New York that has 54 different kinds of meatballs.

To celebrate, some restaurants are give a free side order of meatballs, while others are donating money to homeless shelters from the meatball orders. Cook yourself up your favorite meatballs (recipe found below for a new favorite) or go out and order some from a menu near you!

Betty Crocker’s Hot and Saucy Cocktail Meatballs

Hot and Saucy Cocktail Meatballs

Betty Crocker’s website offers this and many more recipes.

Yield: 6 Servings

Ingredients:

  • 2 pounds lean ground beef
  • 1 cup Progresso™ dry bread crumbs (any flavor)
  • 2/3 cup finely chopped onion
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 bottles (12 ounces each) chili sauce
  • 2 jars (10 ounces each) grape jelly

Directions:

  1. Heat oven to 400°F. Stir together all ingredients except chili sauce and jelly. Shape into 1-inch meatballs. Place in ungreased retangular pan, 13x9x2 inches, or on rack in broiler pan.
  2. Bake uncovered about 20 minutes or until no longer pink in center and juice is clear.
  3. Heat chili sauce and jelly in Dutch oven over medium heat, stirring constantly, until jelly is melted. Stir in meatballs until coated. Simmer uncovered 30 minutes. Serve hot with toothpicks.

Expert Tips:
Handle meatballs as little as possible when forming them to keep them moist and tender.

This mouthwatering sauce is just as scrumptious when used with prepared frozen meatballs or smoked cocktail sausages.

Nutrition Information: Serving Size: 1 Meatball Calories65 ( Calories from Fat20 ), Total Fat2 g (Saturated Fat1 g, ), Cholesterol15 mg Sodium200 mg Total Carbohydrate9 g (Dietary Fiber0g ), Protein3 g ; % Daily Value*: Vitamin A2%; Vitamin C2%; Calcium0%; Iron2%; Exchanges:1/2 Starch; 1/2 Fat; *Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

Tombstone Sandwiches

Yield: 14 Servings, approximately 14 “tombstones”

Tipsy Tombstone Sandwiches
Photo by BH&G

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups diced cooked chicken
  • 1 cup diced celery (2 stalks)
  • 1/2 cup diced green apple
  • 3 slices bacon, crisp cooked, drained, and crumbled
  • 1/2 cup dairy sour cream
  • 1 cup mayonnaise or salad dressing
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 28 slices firm whole wheat and/or rye bread, trimmed into tombstone shapes
  • 1 8-ounce container whipped cream cheese
  • Finely chopped toasted pecans
  • Purple kale

Directions:

  1. In a large bowl, combine chicken, celery, apple, and bacon.
  2. In a medium bowl, stir together sour cream, mayonnaise, and lemon juice. Add to chicken mixture; stir to coat. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Cover; chill for 2 to 24 hours.
  3. To make tombstone sandwiches, spread chicken salad on half of the bread tombstones. Top with remaining bread tombstones . Spread the edges of sandwiches with cream cheese and roll edges in pecans to coat. Use cream cheese to stick tombstones to plate. Add purple kale for a creepy ground cover.

Scary Cerebrum Shrimp Cocktail

Scary Cerebrum Shrimp Cocktail
Photo by Better Homes & Gardens

Yield: 12 Servings

Ingredients:

  • 3 pounds frozen cooked medium shrimp (with tails), thawed and drained well
  • 1/4 cup roasted red sweet peppers, cut into 1/4-inch thick strips
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1 teaspoon unflavored gelatin
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons finely shredded lemon peel
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper

Directions:

  1. In a 1-1/2-quart glass bowl (3-inches high, 7 1/2-inches in diameter), begin arranging shrimp, tails toward the center, in a circle to make 1 flat layer in the bottom of the bowl. (Only the round backs of the shrimp should be visible from the outside of the bowl.) Repeat layers until bowl is full, pressing down every couple layers. As bowl fills up, tuck strips of the roasted red pepper in and around shrimp forming “blood vessels”. (It helps to peer through the sides of glass bowl to adjust as necessary.) When bowl is full, press down firmly with a plate that fits inside the bowl. Set aside.
  2. In a small saucepan combine chicken broth and unflavored gelatin; let stand 5 minutes. Cook and stir over medium heat until gelatin has dissolved. Whisk in lemon peel, lemon juice, tomato paste, honey, garlic, salt, ginger, and cayenne pepper until combined. Pour mixture over shrimp in bowl. Cover and chill at least 5 hours or overnight.
  3. To unmold, set bowl in a sink filled with warm water for several seconds. Invert a large plate with sides over bowl. Invert plate and bowl together and remove bowl to un-mold.  Cover and chill until needed (up to 24 hours).

Spicy Vampire Bat Wings

Recipe from Kraft™Kitchens

Pair these wings with cut-up fresh vegetables.

Yield: 12 Servings

Spicy Vampire Bat Wings
Photo by Kraft

1 Tbsp. chili powder
1 Tbsp. minced garlic
1 tsp. ground red pepper (cayenne)
6 Tbsp. lime juice, divided
6 Tbsp. chopped canned chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, divided
12 whole chicken wings (3 lb.)
2/3 cup KRAFT Original Barbecue Sauce
1 cup sour cream
1 green onion, sliced
2 tsp. lime zest

Directions: 

  1. MIX chili powder, garlic, ground red pepper, and 5 Tbsp. each lime juice and chipotle peppers until blended; pour over chicken in large shallow dish. Turn to evenly coat both sides of wings. Refrigerate 30 min. to marinate, turning wings after 15 min. Meanwhile, mix remaining chipotle peppers and barbecue sauce until blended.
  2. HEAT oven to 400ºF. Remove wings from marinade; place in single layer on baking sheet sprayed with cooking spray. Discard marinade.
  3. BAKE wings 35 to 40 min. or until wings are done, turning after 20 min. Brush with half the barbecue sauce mixture; bake 5 min., turning and brushing with remaining barbecue sauce mixture after 3 min.
  4. COMBINE sour cream, onions, zest and remaining lime juice. Serve with the wings.

 

Pillsbury® Crescent Mummy Dogs

Yield: 10 Servings

Pillsbury™ Crescent Mummy Dogs
Photo by Pillsbury.com

Ingredients: 

  • 1 can (8 oz) Pillsbury™ refrigerated crescent dinner rolls or 1 can (8 oz) Pillsbury® Crescent Recipe Creations® refrigerated seamless dough sheet
  • 2 1/2 slices American cheese, quartered (2.5 oz)
  • 10 large hot dogs
  • Cooking spray
  • Mustard or ketchup, if desired

Directions:

  1. Heat oven to 375°F.
  2. If using crescent rolls: Unroll dough; separate at perforations, creating 4 rectangles. Press perforations to seal. If using dough sheet: Unroll dough; cut into 4 rectangles.
  3. With knife or kitchen scissors, cut each rectangle lengthwise into 10 pieces, making a total of 40 pieces of dough. Slice cheese slices into quarters (1/2 slice cheese, cut in half)
  4. wrapping the mummy dogs
    Wrap 4 pieces of dough around each hot dog and 1/4 slice of cheese to look like “bandages.”

    Wrap 4 pieces of dough around each hot dog and 1/4 slice of cheese to look like “bandages,” stretching dough slightly to completely cover hot dog. About 1/2 inch from one end of each hot dog, separate “bandages” so hot dog shows through for “face.” On ungreased large cookie sheet, place wrapped hot dogs (cheese side down); spray dough lightly with cooking spray.

  5. Bake 13 to 17 minutes or until dough is light golden brown and hot dogs are hot. With mustard, draw features on “face.”

Pumpkin-Shaped Cheese Ball

Pumpkin Cheese Ball
Photo by Sam Kaplan
Recipe courtesy Michelle Buffardi for Cooking Channel
 

Yield: 1 Cheeseball

Ingredients:

  • 16 ounces cream cheese (room temperature)
  • 1-1/2 cups shredding cheddar
  • 3 Tbsp. minced onion
  • 2 Tbsp. salsa
  • 2 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1 tsp. minced jalapeño
  • Tortilla chips or crackers
  • Bell pepper

 

Directions:

  1. With a mixer, blend room-temperature cream cheese with shredded cheddar, minced onion, salsa, ground cumin and minced jalapeno.
  2. Scoop onto plastic wrap and use the wrap to form the mixture into a 5-inch pumpkin-shaped ball; chill at least 2 hours.
  3. To serve, unwrap, roll in crushed nacho-flavored tortilla chips and press a bell pepper stem into the top.