Posts by Erin Gleeson

Erin Gleeson

Let’s Party: Butternut Quesadillas

 

I made a big batch of these Butternut Quesadillas recently for a party, and they were a hit! They’d be perfect for a Superbowl Party. I started with this BHG recipe for Avocado Quesadillas, but swapped the avocado out for roasted, mashed butternut squash. I found that with the squash, you didn’t need quite as much cheese, and it was still moist and delicious! I made them ahead of time and kept them warm in the oven, which worked great.

I use a potato peeler to remove the rind from the squash, which makes things much quicker. Then you can just slice it up and remove the seeds. I cut the squash into cubes (about 1 inch) and spread them out on a cookie sheet. Drizzle liberally with olive oil, then sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast them at 400 degrees for about 30 minutes, or until a fork goes in easily and they are a bit browned. When they come out, mash them in a bowl with a fork.

Just spread about 2 tablespoons of mashed butternut squash onto a tortilla (I used corn). Then sprinkle with cheese (I used Manchego like in the BHG recipe, but anything works!), and a pinch of fresh thyme. Cover with another tortilla and heat in a skillet until the cheese melts, flipping once. Stack the quesadillas in a warm oven until it’s time to eat. I cut them right before serving, and top each with a dollop of sour cream and/or salsa.

Enjoy!

By Erin Gleeson of The Forest Feast, a blog and forthcoming cookbook full of simple recipe and entertaining ideas inspired by living in a cabin in the woods.

 


Erin Gleeson

Warm Brie with Fig & Pistachio Tapenade

Every Christmas Eve, my parents host an open house with appetizers and cocktails. It’s one of my favorite annual gatherings- friends and family stop by all evening. Every year, we make some type of baked brie, and this year we are serving this recipe with a fig and pistachio tapenade, yum! It’s easy to make ahead and it’s so delicious that guests will devour it! I often make and serve it in a mini cast iron pan so that the cheese stays melted longer  once it’s out of the oven. I sprinkle mine with Maldon sea salt for a sweet/salty kick.

This recipe and many others are in the Better Homes & Gardens “Holiday Recipes” magazine, on newsstands now. Several of my fellow Delish Dish bloggers also share some fantastic recipe ideas.

My warmest wishes to you and your families this holiday season!

xo,

Erin

 

Get the recipe for this Warm Brie with Fig and Pistachio Tapenade here. 

 


Erin Gleeson

Spiced Pomegranate-Apple Cider

On a recent trip to Granada, Spain, I bought these adorable Moroccan tea glasses, sold all over Granada because of its Moorish history. I drink a lot of tea during the day while working from my cabin in the woods, but I thought I’d mix it up and make some hot cider instead. (Feels very holiday!)

Since the word Granada means pomegranate in Spanish, I was inspired to add fresh pomegranates to the cider. Starting with this BHG cider recipe, I simmered apple juice, pomegranate juice and spices, then garnished each cup with fresh pomegranate seeds and an apple slice decorated with cloves. I think this would be a fun after-dinner drink on Thanksgiving Day to cozy up by the fire with (plus, it can be spiked with bourbon for the adults!).

Cheers…And Happy Thanksgiving!

 

Spiced Apple-Pomegranate Cider

Adapted from BHG’s Recipe, serves 6-8

Ingredients:

  • 1 gallon of apple cider or apple juice

  • 2 cups pomegranate juice

  • 1/4 cup maple syrup or packed brown sugar

  • Peel from 1 organic orange, cut into strips

  • 4 cinnamon sticks

  • 12 whole cloves, plus more for garnish

  • Thinly sliced apple and seeds from 1 pomegranate for garnish

 

Directions:

1. In a large pot or Dutch oven, combine apple cider/juice, pomegranate juice, and maple syrup or brown sugar.

2. To make a spice bag, cut a double thickness of cheesecloth into a 12-inch square. Place the orange peel, cinnamon sticks and cloves in center of cloth. Bring the corners of cloth together and tie closed with clean kitchen string. Add spice bag to the cider pot.

3. Bring mixture to boiling; reduce heat. Cover and simmer for 15 minutes. Remove spice bag and discard.

4. To serve, ladle cider into mugs. Drop 1 T fresh pomegranate seeds into each glass. To make the garnish, slice an apple into ¼ inch thick circles. Then cut each circle into quarters and push whole cloves into the apple slice (see photo above). Make a little slit in each apple slice to hang it over the side of the glass.

 

Photos and Illustrations by Erin Gleeson of The Forest Feast, a blog and soon-to-be cookbook full of simple recipe and entertaining ideas inspired by living in a cabin in the woods.


Erin Gleeson

Let’s Party: Ginger Cookies

I am so excited about BHG’s new Baking Cookbook. It’s gorgeous and has so many great ideas- from absolute basics to new, creative ideas. I am a sucker for ginger snap cookies, so I gave this Giant Ginger Cookie recipe a whirl. Let me tell you- they were chewy and DELISH! Plus they were really easy to make. You can also make them a little smaller (like I did) and cook them 10-12 minutes instead. I enjoyed mine outside on the deck at sunset for an end of the day treat with a cocktail. Happy Baking!

 

Giant Ginger Cookies:

Ingredients

  • 4 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 4 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups shortening
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup molasses
  • 3/4 cup coarse sugar or granulated sugar
Directions
1.In a medium mixing bowl stir together flour, ginger, baking soda, cinnamon, cloves, and salt; set aside.

2.In a large mixing bowl beat shortening with an electric mixer on low speed for 30 seconds to soften. Gradually add the 2 cups granulated sugar. Beat until combined, scraping sides of bowl occasionally. Beat in eggs and molasses. Beat in as much of the flour mixture as you can with the mixer. Using a wooden spoon, stir in any remaining flour mixture.

3.Shape dough into 2-inch balls using 1/4 cup dough. Roll balls in the 3/4 cup coarse or granulated sugar. Place about 2-1/2 inches apart on an ungreased cookie sheet.

4.Bake in a 350 degree F oven for 12 to 14 minutes or until cookies are light brown and puffed. (Do not overbake or cookies will not be chewy.) Cool on cookie sheet for 2 minutes. Transfer cookies to a wire rack to cool. Store in a tightly covered container at room temperature for up to 3 days or in the freezer for up to 3 months. Makes twenty-five (25) 4-inch

Photos & Illustration by Erin Gleeson of The Forest Feast 


Erin Gleeson

Let’s Party: Roasted Broccoli with Feta & Chickpeas

When I am rushing to get things ready for a dinner party, I often want to make a couple sides that can be served at room temperature to save oven space and time at the last minute.  I adapted this BHG broccoli recipe by adding chickpeas and feta – it’s a super easy (and very tasty) vegetarian side. I prefer my broccoli roasted because I love the crispy edges- I could eat this stuff like popcorn (well, almost!)

Roasted Broccoli with Chickpeas and Feta

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound broccoli, trimmed and cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon coarse sea salt
  • 1 (15 oz.) can of chickpeas (a.k.a. garbanzo beans)
  • 1/2c crumbled feta

Directions:

1.) Lay your broccoli florets on a baking sheet. Drizzle with 2 T of the olive oil and a pinch of sea salt. Roast at 450 degrees F for 10 to 15 minutes, until the edges become slightly brown and crispy.

2.) Let the broccoli cool for 5 minutes then combine in a bowl with the feta, drained chickpeas and remaining 1 T olive oil. Toss and salt to taste. Serve warm or at room temperature.

 

Photos and Illustrations by Erin Gleeson of The Forest Feast, a blog and soon-to-be cookbook full of simple recipe and entertaining ideas inspired by living in a cabin in the woods.

 


Erin Gleeson

Let’s Party: Herbed Blackberry Cocktail

Since we have a big rosemary bush and tons of blackberries out back right now, this Herbed Blackberry Cocktail is my perfect drink! A little sweet, a little aromatic- this is great before a summer dinner party, and so easy to make! Berries and rosemary are muddled, then topped with simple syrup, lime juice and tequila. If you’re entertaining, you can make a pitcher of this ahead of time.

 

 

Herbed Blackberry Cocktail (Herbed Blackberries on the Rocks)

Ingredients:

  • 4 blackberries
  • 2 sprigsfresh rosemary
  • 3 tablespoons (1 1/2 ounces) tequila
  • 2 tablespoons (1 ounce) lime juice
  • 4 teaspoons (about 3/4 ounce) Simple Syrup
  • Ice cubes
  • Blackberries (optional)
  • Fresh rosemary sprig (optional)
Directions:1. In a cocktail shaker combine 4 blackberries and 2 sprigs rosemary. To muddle, gently crush berries and rosemary with the back of a spoon. Add tequila, lime juice, and Simple Syrup. Add ice cubes; cover and shake until very cold. Strain liquid into an ice-filled glass. If desired, garnish with additional blackberries and a rosemary sprig.
Simple Syrup Recipe:
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup water
Directions1.In a small saucepan combine sugar and water. Bring to boiling over medium heat, stirring until sugar is dissolved. (The syrup is done when it is completely clear and the surface is covered with bubbles.) Remove from heat; cool. Store, covered, in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.Photos and illustration by Erin Gleeson of The Forest Feast