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Appetizer

How to Build a Fall/Winter Cheese Board

Appetizers, Holiday, How-To, Quick and Easy, The Holidays

How to Build a Fall/Winter Cheese Board

Today I am doing the very difficult and labor-intensive work to tell you How to Build a Fall/Winter Cheese Board!

I’m not trying to brag but I have been invited to two holiday parties already and we haven’t the true Holiday season. This is going to be a very fun time for me! I’m excited. My neighborhood is very into the holiday spirit; each and every single house on the block already has lights up. In order to fit in with the Jones’, we spent the weekend trying to get our lives together, i.e., getting rid of the squirrel-eaten pumpkins.

Let’s dive in:

How to Build a Fall/Winter Cheese Plate!

Pick your cheeses: Harvarti, Gouda, Alpine (gruyére) – I cubed up Havarti and Gouda for easy consumption. I am all for keeping cheese in their wedge-form but it’s also great to cube up easy-to-eat cheese like these. This way people can use a toothpick and keep it moving.

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Warm Caramelized Fennel and Leek Cheese Dip

Appetizers, Thanksgiving, Vegetarian

Warm Caramelized Fennel and Leek Cheese Dip

I used to be one of those psycho people who liked to be really hungry for Thanksgiving dinner. So instead of having breakfast, I’d just power through the day so I could REALLY enjoy dinner. But then that lead to be, like, being mean to people so now I make sure to eat breakfast AND I always have an appetizer prepped.

This is perfect for that because it can be made the day before and then heated up when hanger-vibes strike.

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Classic Pimento Cheese

Appetizers, Snacks

Classic Pimento Cheese // www.acozykitchen.com

I was born in the south and my family has lived there their whole lives but I don’t really consider myself southern, though I’m definitely southern-ish. I have a strong attraction to southern states, people and food. It was really no surprise that I went back to the south for college, North Carolina to be exact.

My first friend (and best friend ’til this day) at college was a svelte costume design major named Tre. We went everywhere together, including the cafeteria. Rumor had it that our school was just one grade above prison food, which as you know re: Orange is The New black is BAD. Naturally since we were in the south, they had pimento cheese at the salad bar. And everyday Tre would eat pimento cheese on white bread. EVERY SINGLE DAY. (I opted for cereal.) I honestly never touched the pimento cheese because if you think it looks a little scary now in my pictures, imagine how it looked at the ‘one grade above prison salad bar’. Rough.

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Blistered Pea Hummus

Appetizers, Snacks

Blistered Pea Hummus | www.acozykitchen.com

I have a feeling that none of you would be my friend in real life if:

#1 You could hear the voice I use when speaking to Amelia. We all have animal voices. Mine is just REALLY bad. And strangely enough, it’s gets more grating the more tired I get.

#2 You could see me (sometimes!) reach into my dirty hamper and take out dirty socks and put them on my clean feet because ‘they’re not that dirty and I like black socks to match my black Nikes.

#3 You could see how many dishes I dirty when making simple things like a salad, lettuce cups or coffee. ‘Working clean’ is for fancy chefs or people who are more organized in their brains than me.

#4 You could see how many times I open the fridge/freezer, take a swig of something and then return it (versus, you know, pouring myself a glass). But really, I live with only one other person and we make out all the time so it’s totally fine if I double-dip, right…

And now, hummus.

Blistered Pea Hummus | www.acozykitchen.com
This hummus is a labor of love. I’m afraid that you’ll hate me because of this hummus recipe. I’ve made a super simple thing kind of more complicated but I think it’s worth it so please hear me out. Please!

This recipe starts with shucking a bunch of peas, which I honestly like doing. There’s something about repeating the same motion over and over that is soothing.

And then, I juiced the jackets! Whaaa! If you don’t have a juicer, you can totally skip this step, but I wanted the hummus to be as green as possible and I love the notion of waste not want not.

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Baked Brie with Cherries, Pistachios and Caramelized Honey

Appetizers

Baked Brie with Cherries, Pistachios and Caramelized Honey

Last week I was in New York for three short nights and I can tell you from my experience, Spring has not sprung. Being greeted by twenty-one-degree temperatures, AND after a red-eye flight is kind of a brutal (but I had a pretzel later so all was ok). Luckily Spring is near. I’m not a groundhog or anything but I’m staying positive for all of you east coasters.

I’m sure many of you still dealing with Winter’s lingering attitude can’t wait for brunches. Is there anything better than sitting outside, eating with friends while the warmish April sun looks on? I guess when I think of weekend brunching, I think of Spring. It’s that time when we’re just itching to do everything outside, which includes eating. Cocktails and appetizers and pancakes mixed with lunch food. I probably love the mix of foods most about brunch. It’s not just breakfast, but a healthy mix.

P_BakedBrie_2

I baked some cheese for when you’re ready to do this occasion of brunching. I’m hoping you’ll be able to do it soon. (If not, don’t worry because baked cheese also eases sorrows. Trust me.)

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