Bacon . . .wrapped and cheese stuffed jalapenos! Perfect addition to your SuperBowl menu.

Smokey Bacon Wrapped Jalapenos

 Smoky Bacon Wrapped Jalapenos

Makes 6 servings

Recipe by Chef Jennifer Hill Booker

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Ingredients:

1/2 cup cream cheese

1/2 cup shredded sharp Cheddar cheese

12 jalapeno peppers

6 slices bacon cut in half thin sliced bacon works better

24 wooden toothpicks

Directions:

Preheat grill to 400*F.
Mix cream cheese and Cheddar cheese together in a bowl until evenly blended.

Cut a small hole, about the size of a quarter, in each jalapeno. Save the pieces of jalapeno you remove and leave the stems intact.

For a less spicy jalapeno: Use a small spoon, scrape out the seeds and membrane.

Fill each jalapeno with the cheese mixture.

Put the piece of jalapeno back in place and wrap each stuffed pepper with a half slice of bacon. Secure the bacon with a toothpick.

Arrange bacon-wrapped peppers on the prepared grill

Grill until bacon is crispy, about 10 minutes, turning throughout the grilling process.

 

 

Grilled Jerk Chicken Wings: Super Food for the Super Bowl!

Jerk Wings

Grilled Jerk Chicken Wings

 

Yields 8 servings

Recipe by Chef Jennifer Hill Booker

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

 

Ingredients:

Jerk Marinade

1 small onion, peeled

3 scallions, green and white parts

1 tablespoon fresh thyme

4 large garlic cloves

3 Scotch bonnet chilies, seeds removed

¼ cup fresh lime juice

3 tablespoons vegetable oil

1 tablespoon sea salt

¼ cup packed brown sugar

2 teaspoons ground allspice

1 teaspoons fresh ground black pepper

¾ teaspoon freshly grated ginger

½ teaspoon cinnamon

 

16 whole chicken wings

 

Directions:

Preheat grill to 400*F.

Place onion, scallions, thyme, garlic, scotch bonnet, lime juice, vegetable oil, salt, brown sugar, allspice, black pepper, and cinnamon in a food processor and puree until it resembles a smooth paste.

Place chicken wings in a large Ziploc bag and coat with the marinade. You can save any unused marinade in the fridge in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks. Just make sure it doesn’t come in contact with the raw chicken or anything (including your hands) that has touched the raw wings.

Seal bag and refrigerate overnight to 24 hours.

Remove chicken from the refrigerator and allow to temper for 20 minutes at room temperature.

Place wings on the hottest side of the grill and cook until well browned on all sides, about 3-5 minutes.

Move chicken to cooler side of the grill, cover with lid or an aluminum pan, and continue to cook until chicken is cooked through, about 20 minutes more.

Remove from grill, allow to rest for 5 minutes and enjoy with a cold drink!

Spice Up Your Holidays!

Spice up your Holidays!

Try this Simple & Delicious Spiced Wine Recipe.

Chef Jennifer Booker Cookbook

Rich full-bodied wine, fragrant spices and fresh citrus makes this Spiced Wine a real holiday treat!

Spiced Wine

Yields 6 healthy servings

Ingredients:

1 bottle full-bodied red wine

½ cup dark brown sugar

1 orange, zest only

1 lemon, zest only

3 black peppercorns, crushed

2 cardamom pods, crushed

1 cinnamon stick

2 cloves

1/2 cup kirsch

 

Garnish:

12 cinnamon sticks

Directions:

In a large saucepan, combine the red wine with the sugar, the orange and lemon zests, peppercorns, cardamom pods, cinnamon stick and cloves.

Over moderate heat, slowly bring the wine to a very low simmer, stirring to dissolve the sugar.

Remove from the heat, strain out the zest and spices; and stir in the kirsch.

Ladle the spiced wine into heatproof glasses, garnish with cinnamon sticks, and serve hot.

 

Turkey 911: Helpful Tips for the Perfect Thanksgiving Turkey . . EVER!

RoastedTurkey

Here are few tips from chef and author of Southern cookbook, Field Peas to Foie Gras: Southern Recipes with a French Accent, to help make your Thanksgiving turkey your BEST yet!

Prerequisites for Cooking the Perfect Thanksgiving Turkey

 

Number One: The temperature in your oven has to be accurate.
You might want to test your oven before the big day by simply preheating it to 250° and testing it with a cooking thermometer. Start your turkey out uncovered in a 425*F oven for 30 minutes. Cover the breast with aluminum foil and drop the temperature down to 325*F for the remainder of the cooking time. This is guarantees a turkey that is crisp outside and juicy inside.

Number Two: Your turkey has been safely and totally thawed and cleaned. The only safe way to thaw a frozen turkey is to place it in the refrigerator. Other methods such as running cold water over it or placing it in a microwave oven are not safe because of the chance of bacterial growth and food borne illness. So place your frozen bird in the refrigerator at least 2 days before the big day.

 

Number Three: Be sure to remove the neck and giblets from the inside of the turkey! Don’t laugh!  People have done this, so check both the top AND the bottom of your turkey for them. There is nothing quite as anti-climactic is carving the Thanksgiving turkey and having the bag of giblets pop out.
Number Four: Know the actual weight of the turkey. Knowing this number guarantees that you cook your turkey the right amount of time and end up with a turkey that’s golden brown, juicy, and delicious. It also helps plan the timing of your side dishes as well. A good rule of thumb to figure out when to start cooking your Thanksgiving turkey is to back track from the time you want to have it on the table.

 

Number Five: Add your dressing last. Stuff your turkey with dressing once the turkey is totally done and has an internal cooking temperature of 165*F. NEVER stuff a raw turkey-the dressing will absorb the turkey’s uncooked blood and juices and can lead to food borne illness.

 

RoastedTurkey300

Labor of Love: Hand Crafted Knives

Custom Made Knives by Heartwood Forge

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Great food is a result of many moving parts like quality ingredients, talented cooks and the right equipment, all working together to create an unforgettable meal. I’ve found that people here in Georgia are pretty savvy when it comes to knowing how our food is grown and where it comes from. And thanks to popular cooking shows, they also know how to properly cook and present that food! But I wonder if they’ve ever given much thought to how their pots, pans and their knives are made? Well I did, so I took a journey to Jefferson to find out.

Heartwood Forge chefs knife

photo by Will Manning

Nestled in the woods right off Potters House Road is Heartwood Forge, where designer and knife maker Will Manning creates his practical works of art. Hoping to answer my own question, I spent the day making knives with Will. Which admittedly, from the outside looking in, seemed more like Will making the knives while I just watched. What I learned was this: Will is very skilled and passionate in what he does. He uses repurposed metal from places like Monticello to make his knives; salvaged wood from trees like pecan, box elder and maple or white tailed deer antlers to make the handles; and reclaimed brass for balancing the handle with the blade of the knife. I also learned that his goal is to put his knives in the hands that will use them, and for that measure he has a virtual store front where you can browse and buy your knives. If you’re thinking you want something more a bit more personal, like a custom made knife, then you’re in luck, because as it turns out, Will makes those too!

2015-08-26 12.23.41

Photos by Jennifer Hill Booker

Georgia Tourism Welcomes it’s Newest Explorer: Chef Jennifer Hill Booker!

Let’s Welcome Our Culinary Explorer!

Chef Jennifer Hill Booker

Chef Jennifer Booker heashot

 

 

 

Chef Jennifer Hill Booker is a Georgia Grown Executive Chef, Atlanta based cookbook author, and culinary educator, and believes that “food should taste like food.” Jennifer has spent her 20-year culinary career educating people about food, nutrition, and healthy cooking practices. 

As a working mother, she knows that quick, easy, and delicious is the name of the game when making meals for her family and makes a point of sourcing out the tastiest seasonal produce to cook at home.

As a culinary educator, she is in a prime position to demonstrate the ease, affordability, and importance of cooking and eating seasonally, and has shared this information in the classroom, cooking stage, her original published recipes, and in her first cookbook – Field Peas to Foie Gras: Southern Recipes with a French Accent, (available at Pelicanpub.com).

In addition to being a mom and a chef, she also enjoys being a contributing food writer for Georgia Magazine, a guest blogger for Produce Bites, and sharing innovative recipes, cooking trends, and fun kitchen gadgets on her own website: YourResidentGourmet.com.

Tomato & Bell Pepper Relish. Yum!

 

Tomato & Bell Pepper Relish

Chef Jennifer Booker Cookbook

 

Summertime in Georgia means lazy days by the pool, picnics at the park, and gardens, gardens, gardens! For all of you avid gardeners, it’s time to reap the rewards of all of the hard work you’ve put into your gardens this year! Not a gardener?  Not to worry, there is enough seasonal bounty to go around! I’m talking about crisp bell peppers, spicy onions, sweet and juicy tomatoes, and everything in between.

 

Chef Jennifer Booker Cookbook

 

With tomatoes and bell peppers in season, this canned Tomato & Bell Pepper Relish recipe is the ideal way to capture summer in a jar! It’s delicious now and the perfect way to preserve summer vegetables and enjoy them all year round. I also LOVE the fact that this recipe is extremely versatile. My family enjoys it on hotdogs, over peas and beans (pinto beans are my favorite), and even as a zesty addition to Southern style potato salad.

Chef Jennifer Booker Cookbook

 

So the next time you harvest veggies from your garden or make a trip to your local farmer’s market, be sure and take a copy of this recipe with you and pick up everything you need to make Tomato & Bell Pepper Relish. And be sure to take a peek at all of the fresh and inviting recipes listed on ProduceBites -You’ll be glad that you did.

Tomato & Bell Pepper Relish

Yields 8-10 pints

Relish Ingredients:

  • 4 cups onions, rough chopped
  • 1 large cabbage, cored and rough chopped into ¼ inch pieces
  • 4 cups green tomatoes, cored and rough chopped
  • 4 cups green and red bell peppers, rough chopped into ¼ pieces
  • 6 large garlic cloves, minced
  • ½ cup pickling salt
  • 6 cups sugar
  • 2 cups cider vinegar
  • 2 cups white vinegar
  • 2 cups water
  • ½ cup Pickling Spice

Pickling Spice Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons whole mustard seeds
  • 1 tablespoon whole allspice berries
  • 2 teaspoons whole coriander seeds
  • 2 tablespoons black pepper corns
  • 1 teaspoon dried mace
  • 1 tablespoon cardamom
  • 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes, or more to taste
  • 1 teaspoon dried ginger
  • 2 dried bay leaves, crumbled
  • 2 cinnamon sticks, crushed
  • 6 whole cloves

To Prepare Picking Spice:

  1. Add all ingredients to a glass jar with a tight fitting lid.
  2. Seal tightly and shake to combine.
  3. This spice mixture will last about 3 months when keep in a cool dark place.

Relish Directions:

  1. In a large bowl, combine the onions, cabbage, green tomatoes, bell peppers, garlic and salt.
  2. Cover with a clean cloth and let stand room temperature overnight or at least 12 hours. Transfer vegetables to cheese cloth lined colander or sieve and drain well. This may take up to 2 hours.
  3. Place vegetables in a large stainless steel stock pot and add sugar, vinegar, water and Pickling Spice.
  4. Simmer for 20 minutes, stirring frequently. Pack into hot sterilized pint jars, wiping the rim of the jars clean.
  5. Seal and process in a pot of boiling water, making sure the water covers the jar tops with at least 2 inches of water, slowly bring water to a boil, and process for 5 minutes.
  6. Remove pot from heat and allow jars to cool to room temperature while in processing water.
  7. Remove from water, wipe dry and make sure all jars are tightly sealed. You know that they are sealed when you are able to press the center of the lids without getting any bounce back.
  8. Store unopened jars in a cool dark place for a year or more-so long as the jar remains tightly sealed.
  9. Enjoy on hotdogs and burgers, over beans and greens and even in potato salad!

For other delicious  & seasonal recipes, go to ProduceBites, A Blog For People Who Love Georgia Grown Fruits And Vegetables.

Photo credit to Deborah Whitlaw Llewellyn

A-MA-ZING Chocolate Pots de Creme!!

I was writing a menu for a cooking class, and looking for a chocolate pots de creme recipe that didn’t require any cook time- and I found it!!

This recipe is adapted from The Pioneer Woman’s (Ree Drummond), recipe. She had the right idea and I just added my personal touches to it. So get your blender ready and prepare to fall in love with this Rich, Decadent, and Ridiculously Easy chocolate pots de creme recipe!

 

Chocolate Pots de Crème

 

 

Yields 8 servings

 

Ingredients:
6 ounces semisweet chocolate chip

6 ounces dark chocolate chips
4 large eggs, at room temperature
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 pinch salt

1 pinch cayenne pepper
8 ounces (1 cup) very hot strong coffee or espresso
1 cup heavy cream, cold
2 tablespoons sugar
Directions:
Place the chocolate chips, eggs, vanilla, salt and the cayenne pepper into a blender.

Pulse 5 to 7 times or until the chocolate chips are pulverized.
Turn on the blender on low speed and carefully pour the very hot coffee through the top of the blender lid, in a steady stream. The coffee will melt the chocolate turning it into a smooth mixture.

Blend until smooth and creamy.
Pour the mixture into small mason jars, wine glasses or demitasse cups and place in the refrigerator for 2 to 3 hours, or until firm.
Whip the cream with the sugar together with a wire whip.

Add a spoonful of whipped cream to each pot de crème right before serving.

Black Eyed Pea Hummus . .. .Yes, Please!

 

~If you’re looking for a fresh new way to serve up tried and true Southern ingredients, then this Black Eyed Pea Hummus recipe is for you!

Chef Jennifer Hill Booker, has reinvented traditional Middle Eastern hummus we’re used to eating by using such Southern ingredients as black eyed peas, pecans, pecan oil, and apple cider vinegar! Can you say, yes please!

 

Black Eyed Pea Hummus

original recipe by Chef Jennifer Hill Booker

Yields  5 cups

Ingredients:

2-14.5 ounce cans black eyed peas, drained and rinsed

1-14.5 ounce can chick peas, drained and rinsed

4 cloves garlic

1/2 cup pecan oil, I like Oliver Farms Pecan Oil

1/2 cup pecans

1/4 cup apple cider vinegar

1 teaspoon red pepper flakes

sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Garnish:

1/4 cup chopped pecans

1 tablespoon chopped scallions

Pecan oil

Directions:

Place all of the ingredients into a food processor with the blade attachment.

Pulse for 2-3 minutes or longer for a smoother hummus.

Adjust taste with salt and pepper and additional vinegar, as needed.

Garnish with chopped pecans, scallions, and a drizzle of pecan oil.

Enjoy with pita chips, crackers, or fresh cut veggies!

Field Peas to Foie Gras . . .Tattoos??!

 

Field Peas to Foie Gras fan at my Blue Bicycle Books-book signing.

Looks like I’m not the only one who like foie gras-check out his knuckles!!

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