Swapping #Austin360Cooks Super Bowl ideas, plus barbecue chicken wings

This rainy weather is great for pre-Super Bowl food prep, so if you’re on the hunt for something great to snack on tomorrow, here are some ideas I found through #Austin360Cooks this week.

The chunkiest real-cheese queso I’ve seen all season from @:

Five-minute salsa from @mariesaba:
Sriracha-roasted cauliflower (that just might satisfy your craving for buffalo wings) from @:
Below, you’ll find another spin on the mighty buffalo wing from “Taste of Home” magazine, a recipe we ran in a big Super Bowl story in Wednesday’s paper.
We’d love to see what you’re making this Super Bowl weekend and what you’re enjoying at parties on Sunday. Add the #Austin360Cooks hashtag to your pics on social media and we’ll pull the best ones and print them in this week’s food section.
Tangy barbecue chicken wings from Taste of Home.
Tangy barbecue chicken wings from Taste of Home.

Tangy Barbecue Chicken Wings

5 lbs. chicken wings
2 1/2 cups ketchup
2/3 cup white vinegar
2/3 cup honey
1/2 cup molasses
2 to 3 Tbsp. hot pepper sauce
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
1/2 tsp. onion powder
1/2 tsp. chili powder
1/2 to 1 tsp. liquid smoke, optional

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Using a sharp knife, cut through the two wing joints; discard wing tips. Arrange remaining wing pieces in two greased 15-inch-by-10-inch-by-1-inch baking pans. Bake 30 minutes; drain. Turn wings; bake 20-25 minutes longer or until juices run clear.

Meanwhile, in a large saucepan, combine remaining ingredients; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Drain wings. Place one-third of the chicken in a 5-quart slow cooker; top with one-third of the sauce. Repeat layers twice. Cook, covered, on low, 3 to 4 hours. Stir before serving. Makes 2 dozen wings.

— From Taste of Home magazine


Austin360Eats: Dining al fresco, with fries

With record-breaking heat this week, Austin diners were soaking up the sun (and the French fries) on patios across the city. Krystal Mullins, a blogger who writes at homemadeaustin.com and posts photos to @homemadeaustin on Instagram, enjoyed an egg-topped burger, truffle fries and a Mexican Coke at Independence Fine Foods, 10003 Manchaca Road.

At Second Bar & Kitchen downtown a few days later, Instagrammer @andreanuu had one of their house-ground burgers topped with shallot confit, gruyere and horseradish pickles, alongside some of the happiest looking fries I’ve seen this side of Boise.

View this post on Instagram

#lategram THIS.

A post shared by Andrea Nuñez (@andreannu) on

Share photos of what you’re eating this week by adding the #Austin360Eats hashtag to your posts on social media, and here are the latest pics y’all have submitted this week:

Event: Get a taste of France on Austin food tour

croissantSojourner Tour Company, a local business that offers culinary tours of France, knows that not everybody can splurge on a leisurely trip to Paris, but next month, they are hosting a food tour here to show off the French wonders to be discovered in Central Texas.

The daylong tour Feb. 28, which costs $125, “will give local residents an opportunity to discover places French expats shop for foods typically enjoyed in France,” including meals and a wine tasting at local restaurants, visits to area boutiques and a game of petanque.

This tour will be guided by Francis Mathieu, a professor at Southwestern University who teaches a course on the history of French gastronomy. Find more details here at sojournertours.com.

Austinite launches new line of olive oil-based skin care products

BODY-OILI’ve known quite a few people who use olive oil instead of traditional lotion on their skin, but it was always a little too greasy for my face and hands.

But for about a month, I’ve been using a new product called Olive & M from Austinite Mariska Nicholson without that same leftover residue. The three products in the skin care line — a face oil, a body oil and a cleansing oil — are all made with extra-virgin olive oil from Texas Olive Ranch, as well as a proprietary mixture of other plant-based oils and extracts from ingredients such as pink grapefruit, bergamot and clary sage. They smell wonderful and are super effective at hydrating dry winter skin, even when I was in Missouri, where it is typically much colder and drier than here.

You can find out more about the products, which start at $58 for a 4 oz. bottle, at oliveandm.com.

Austin360Cooks: Making lamb roast with delicata squash for one

I don’t cook lamb as often as I should. I love lamb burgers, braised lamb shank, lamb stew, you name it.

I hadn’t tried preparing a boneless lamb loin roast until the American Lamb Board sent one to me ahead of its first Lamb Jam in Austin next month.

(The event at Barr Mansion on Feb. 22, will feature 16 Austin chefs, including Chris Hurley of the Bonneville, Carlos Ysaguirre of Jacoby’s Restaurant & Mercantile and Mark Schmidt of Blackbird & Henry, showing off what they can do with this versatile meat. Tickets cost $60, and you can buy them at americanlamb.com.)

I knew I wanted to prepare the roast as simply as possible, but I wasn’t sure what I wanted to serve with it.

I have at least two generic “lamb herb blends” in my spice pantry, but you could use just about any blend of basic herbs you have in yours. This roast, which had more fat still attached than I was expecting, didn’t end up as heavily spiced or seasoned as some I’ve seen, but I loved how the flavor of the lamb stood out with just a little garlic and a few herbal notes.

What really pulled the meal together was an even more modest side dish of sliced delicata squash. I often buy the thick-skinned winter squashes that are best peeled, but Sprouts usually sells the thin-skinned delicata that do not require peeling. (They are also easier to slice than the acorn and butternut squash varieties.)

While the squash and lamb were roasting, I whipped up some mashed potatoes from the box but took the time to make the gravy from scratch while the lamb rested. The results? One of those delightful solitary meals, accompanied by a good book, that made me do a little dance in my seat while I ate.

(That dance returned the following day when I made a taco with the leftover lamb meat sauteed with roughly chopped kale and topped with sliced avocado. What taco isn’t improved with sliced avocado?)

(Editor’s note: This post is part of an ongoing cooking-at-home series called Austin360Cooks in which anyone can share what’s cooking in their home by adding #Austin360Cooks to their posts on social media. You can find a gallery of recently submitted pics at the end of this post, and you can follow me on Instagram at @broylesa.)

lambplatedLamb Roast with Roasted Delicata Squash

2-3 lb. lamb roast
3 cloves garlic, minced
3 Tbsp. herb blend (such as one with dried parsley, rosemary, basil, tarragon and coriander seeds), divided
2 Tbsp. olive oil, divided
Salt and pepper, to taste
2 delicata squash, seeds removed and sliced into 1/2-inch half-circles

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Lay roast flat on a cutting board and, using your hands, rub the inside with garlic and half of the herb blend and then roll tightly.

Tie with kitchen twine and rub the outside of the roast with 1 Tbsp. of oil and the rest of the herbs. Sprinkle with a little salt and ground pepper. Let rest for at least 30 minutes to help the meat come closer to room temperature and to allow the flavors to seep into the roast.

Heat a large Dutch oven or other heavy-bottom vessel over medium-high heat. Brown the outside of the roast, about 2 to 3 minutes on each side, rotating the roast with a pair of tongs. Once the outside of the roast has been browned, move the Dutch oven into the oven and roast for 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, place the squash slices on a sheet pan, drizzle with remaining olive oil and salt and pepper and toss well. After the first 20 minutes of cooking the roast, place the sheet pan in the oven and rotate the vessel in which the roast is cooking. Continue roasting both at the same time for another 15 to 20 minutes, checking the internal temperature of the roast after about 10 additional minutes and using a spatula to turn the squash at least once. The temperature of the lamb should be at least 145 degrees, 150 for medium/medium-rare.

Remove the roast from the oven and let rest for at least 10 minutes before slicing into 1-inch rounds for serving. (You can make a gravy with the drippings while the meat rests, if you’d like.) Serves 4, with leftover lamb meat.

— Addie Broyles

The very best spinach artichoke dip you’ll ever make

My sister is good at inspiring me to make hyperbolic statements like the one above.

She knocked it out of the park with her chocolate chip cookies, you’ll remember, but about a year ago, she mentioned that her friend makes a spinach artichoke dip with lots of garlic and sun-dried tomatoes that was known in her social circles as The Dip.

Spinach artichoke dip with sun-dried tomatoes. Photo by Addie Broyles.
Spinach artichoke dip with sun-dried tomatoes. Photo by Addie Broyles.

I finally made it last week for today’s big package on Super Bowl party foods, and I have to admit: She was right. Again.

I brought the dip into the newsroom after I photographed it, and quickly received about six emails from my colleagues says they’d make the h-e-double-hockey-sticks out of that when the recipe came out.

Well, the recipe came out in today’s food section, along with recipes for tangy barbecue chicken wings, edamame pate, a quick turkey chili and some really good rosemary, apricot and pistachio crisps, and I’ve pulled it out for you below so you can bookmark it for the next time you’re hosting a get-together and need a really awesome dip for chips, crackers, sliced baguettes or raw vegetables.

Spinach Artichoke Dip with Sun-Dried Tomatoes

1 Tbsp. olive oil
1/2 red onion, chopped
1/2 sweet onion, chopped
2 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar
1/3 cup Riesling white wine
1/2 cup finely chopped sun-dried tomatoes
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 Tbsp. dried rosemary, crushed finely with mortar and pestle
1/2 tsp. freshly ground pepper
1 pinch red pepper flakes
1 Tbsp. dried basil
1 Tbsp. paprika
1 tsp. celery salt
1 (14-oz.) can marinated artichoke hearts, halved (reserve the liquid)
1 (8-oz.) package cream cheese
Crumbs from 1 sliced baguette
1 1/2 cups Parmesan-Romano cheese
1/2 cup mayo
1 (10-oz.) package frozen chopped spinach, thawed and squeezed dry
1 Tbsp. chopped chives (optional)

Add olive oil to a large skillet over medium high heat. Saute onions on medium/high heat until soft and add balsamic vinegar. When the balsamic vinegar is absorbed, add the white wine, sun-dried tomatoes and garlic and continue to saute until the ingredients stick again. Add all the spices, herbs, artichokes and 1/3 cup of the artichoke marinating liquid and simmer for one minute.

Lower the heat and add the cream cheese, bread crumbs and Parmesan to pan and mix thoroughly. When the cream cheese mixture is blended, add the mayo, spinach and chives, if using, and mix well. Add more of the artichoke liquid if needed.

Place mixture in a baking dish and bake at 400 degrees for 5 to 10 minutes, until dip bubbles and begins to brown. Serve with a sliced baguette, crackers and/or raw vegetables.

— Adapted from a recipe by Daniel Curry

Austin360 Taste Test: Live Soda Kombucha

Austin is big into kombucha.

We have nearly half a dozen commercial kombucha makers, plus countless people who make this fermented tea at home. It’s packed full of probiotics that can boost your immune system, but not everybody loves the taste.livekombucha

That was what prompted Austinite Trevor Ross to create a line of soda-inspired kombuchas that have less of the tangy vinegar taste of traditional kombuchas. Live Soda Kombucha comes in six flavors: lemon, orange, root beer, cola, ginger and Pure Doctor, modeled after Dr Pepper. They cost about $2.50 each and are widely available in stores including H-E-B and Target.

We tried four of them in this week’s Austin360 Taste Test video with both a kombucha lover, videographer Kelly West, who makes her own kombucha, and a kombucha novice, Tony Atkins, who loves soda. UPDATE: Live Soda Kombucha reached out this week with some additional info to questions we brought up in the video. As a raw kombucha, the drink has as many probiotics and sometimes more than other kombuchas on the market, and the natural flavors “are derived from natural essential oils extracted from fruits,” as well as regular spices, such as cinnamon, but “no artificial ingredients are used nor are they added to our extracted flavors or spices,” according to a rep.

You can see the rest of the videos in this series at YouTube.com/austin360video.

Austin360Eats: 40 North’s kale pizza from @veryprairie

John Hart Asher, an environmental designer in Austin who posts on Instagram as @veryprairie, has been enjoying 40 North, a relatively new pizza truck at 1502 S. First St., the lot that is still shaking the barbecue smoke left over from La Barbecue and John Mueller.

View this post on Instagram

kale pizza #Austin360Eats @40northpizza

A post shared by John Hart Asher (@veryprairie) on

Over the holiday weekend, Asher posted photos of two pies from this Neapolitan-pizzeria-on-wheels: ‬a savory coppa-topped pizza that gets a surprising kick of sweet heat from Mike’s Hot Honey and a bright green kale flatbread that is graced with Richardson Farms’ pork sausage and fresh mozzarella.

40 North started serving lunch just a few weeks ago, and its hours are Tuesday to Friday from noon to 3 p.m. and 6 to 10 p.m. and Saturday from noon to 10 p.m. You can find out more about their menu at 40northpizza.com.

To share photos of your culinary discoveries in Central Texas, add the #Austin360Eats hashtag to your posts on social media, and here’s the latest gallery of what you all have been sharing.

Recipe of the week: Pollo Guisado

This pollo guisado is a rich, healthful stew from “Healthy Latin Eating” by Angie Martinez and Angelo Sosa. Photo by Christina Holmes.
This pollo guisado is a rich, healthful stew from “Healthy Latin Eating” by Angie Martinez and Angelo Sosa. Photo by Christina Holmes.

Tired of beef stew and chili yet?

Soups and stews are staples of winter cooking, but most of us only have a few standards that we don’t even need a recipe to make. For many people with roots in the Dominican Republic, like second baseman Robinson Canó, pollo guisado is one of those stews.

Canó, a former Yankee who now plays for the Mariners, shared a leaner version of his family’s recipe for a new book from “Top Chef” alum Angelo Sosa and popular New York radio host Angie Martinez called “Healthy Latin Eating: Our Favorite Family Recipes Remixed” (Kyle Book, $22.95). Instead of using a whole chicken, his lower-fat version uses boneless, skinless chicken breasts and lots of vegetables.

Pollo Guisado

To make the garlic paste that boosts the flavor in this dish, hit the clove with the flat part of a knife, sprinkle kosher salt on top of the flattened (and peeled) garlic and then drag the knife over the garlic to break down the fibers with the coarse granules of salt.

1 lb. boneless skinless chicken breast, cut into strips
2 medium green bell peppers, seeded and thinly sliced
1 small red onion, thinly sliced
4 plum tomatoes, cut into quarters
1 large carrot, peeled and roughly chopped
1 medium baking potato, unpeeled, cut into small cubes
1/4 cup chopped celery
1/4 cup pitted green olives
1 small clove garlic, mashed into a paste with a little kosher salt
1 tsp. ground cumin
1 teaspoon chili powder
2 sprigs fresh oregano
2 sprigs fresh thyme
1 dried bay leaf
1 tsp. agave nectar
1 Tbsp. tomato paste
2 lemons, cut in half
Kosher salt, to taste
2 Tbsp. vegetable oil

In a large bowl, combine the chicken strips, vegetables, spices, herbs, agave, and tomato paste. Squeeze the juice from the lemons over the chicken mixture and season with a pinch of salt. Toss to combine and marinate at room temperature for at least 30 minutes. In a large heavy-bottomed saucepan or pot, heat the vegetable oil over medium-high heat. Remove the chicken from the marinade and sear in the pan until browned, 8 to 10 minutes, turning as needed. Reserve the marinade and the vegetables.

When the chicken is seared, add enough water to cover and bring to a boil. Add the reserved marinade and vegetables and cover the pan with a tightfitting lid. Reduce the heat to low and simmer until all the ingredients are tender and the chicken is cooked through, adding more water if necessary, about 10 minutes. Season with salt. Serves 4.

— From “Healthy Latin Eating: Our Favorite Family Recipes Remixed” (Kyle Book, $22.95) by Angie Martinez and Angelo Sosa

A baked potato soup that’s mostly cauliflower

I’m a little late in posting a recap of our food section yesterday, but I was pretty happy with how this lead package on cauliflower turned out.

Both chefs and home cooks are using plain Jane white cauliflower in all kinds of new ways right now, including at restaurants like Gardner and St. Philip, which shared its recipe for golden cauliflower with herbed yogurt late last year. As it turns out, white cauliflower can be manipulated to make “rice” and even crazy things like pizza crust, tortillas and bread for grilled cheese sandwiches.

For our story, we had recipes for mock mashed potatoes and tabouli, as well as entree dishes like this cauliflower baked potato soup, which has both cauliflower and potatoes, but only one small potato for the entire soup, cutting the total carbs by more than half.

Creamy Cauliflower Baked Potato Soup from “Supermarket Healthy: Recipes and Know-How for Eating Well Without Spending a Lot” by Melissa d’Arabian. Photo by Tina Rupp.

Creamy Cauliflower ‘Baked Potato’ Soup

There are few soups more decadent than a classic baked potato soup, loaded with cream, Cheddar cheese and bacon. I leave out the cream, sub cauliflower for most of the potato (using one potato locks in the flavor) and add a dollop of reduced-fat cream cheese to deliver the creaminess and cheesiness. A stealth addition of one carrot adds a subtle color that makes the soup seem cheesier than it is, since the only Cheddar here is what sits on top of the soup!

— Melissa d’Arabian

Add the bacon to a large soup pot set over medium heat and cook until the bacon is crisp, about 7 minutes. Use a slotted spoon to transfer the bacon to a paper towel–lined plate and set aside.

Stir the onion into the bacon fat and cook, stirring often, until it is translucent, about 3 minutes. Add the cauliflower, potato, carrot, garlic, salt and pepper, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables begin to soften, about 5 minutes.

Raise the heat to medium-high, add the broth and 1 cup water, and bring the liquid to a boil. Simmer the mixture until the vegetables are very soft, about 13 minutes. Turn off the heat and use a ladle to transfer half the vegetables and liquid to a blender. Add the cream cheese and blend until smooth.

Pour the puréed soup into a large bowl or clean saucepan. Blend the second half of the soup until it is smooth and add it to the first batch. Heat the soup over medium heat until it is warmed through. Divide among soup bowls and serve topped with a dollop of yogurt and some of the grated cheese, bacon, and scallion. Serves 4.

— From “Supermarket Healthy: Recipes and Know-How for Eating Well Without Spending a Lot” by Melissa d’Arabian (Clarkson Potter, $24.99)