Bite Sized Pistachio Crusted Goat Cheese Balls

When hosting a Superbowl party, there is always the desire to tackle some really exciting and fun dishes. Keeping that in mind, it’s always good to have some impressive looking bites that take no time to really fill up your table.

During the rest of the year, these are so great for elevating an otherwise lackluster salad.

Bite Sized Pistachio Crusted Goat Cheese Balls

Servings: 12 1 Inch Balls
Prep Time: 15 Minutes
Total Time: 15 Minutes

Bite Sized Pistachio Crusted Goat Cheese Balls

INGREDIENTS

Goat Cheese (7 oz, cold)
Pistachios (1/4 cup, deshelled, finely chopped)
Chives (12 stems, finely chopped)

KITCHEN ITEMS

Food Chopper (or food processor, or cutting board and chef’s knife)
Tablespoon
Pinch Bowl (3)
Plate

Bite Sized Pistachio Crusted Goat Cheese Balls

1. OH, BALLS. put your chopped pistacchios in one of your pinch bowls and your chiopped chives in another.

Fill your third pinch bowl a quarter of the way high with a mixture of your pistacchios and chives.

Use your tablespoon to scoop tablespoon sized pieces of goat cheese into your hands.

Use your hands to roll it like play-doh into a ball.

Put that cheese ball into your pinch bowl with your pistachio chive mixture.

Hold that pinch bowl from it’s rim and spin it around causing your cheese ball around fully coating it in your nuts and chive mixture.

Place your pistachio and chive coated goat cheese ball on your plate.

Repeat this process until you’ve gone through all of your cheese making sure to refill your pinch bowl as you need to.

Refrigerate your balls until you plan to serve them.

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The Quintessential Football Shaped Superbowl Meatball Subs

When preparing some really delicious Superbowl bites for this weekend’s game menu, I came across these all too perfect football shaped breads from a company called Eat The Ball on the FreshDirect website. Instantly, I needed to know more. Immediately, I jumped from liking them, to obsessed with them, to “need to get my hands on those right this minute” crazy.

I’m not entirely nuts, there are real reasons that I got so excited about them. I’ll state a few, but just know, you’re so going to be on the same page and immediately need to get your hands on them. So, before I go on, in addition to FreshDirect, here’s where you can get them.

Eat The Ball is a European company just now traveling across the pond to the US of A with a great product and huge backing. With athletes like Seahawks quarterback and Superbowl winner Russell Wilson, a truly innovative fermentation process that keeps their all natural breads fresh and flavorful even when frozen for up to a year, incredibly playful shapes that take all sports foods to the next level, and me being the first blogger to work with them (yes, I’m putting myself in the same stream of consciousness and sentence as Russell Wilson) you’d be crazy not to love them. I know you don’t want to be the bad kind of crazy here, I promise you, you want to be the truly obsessed kind of crazy.

All of this, plus, I so love playing with my food—not just mixing flavors and enjoying the cooking process, but really having fun with it. With Eat The Ball, there is no question, these breads beg to be played with. I dare you not to try to toss a spiral before diving into this recipe (when you do, take a video and send it to me, I beg of you)!

I’m taking the idea of these Eat The Ball balls to a truly baller level. Just in time for the Superbowl, I’m turning them into spicy tomato meatball subs. Dive on in! This way,  when your mouth is full while you’re jumping up yelling “TOUCHDOWN!” you’ll be happy it’s filled with these incredibly delicious game day subs!

Party on!

 

The Quinticential Football Shaped Superbowl Meatball Subs

Servings: 4 Mini Meatball Subs (15 Meatballs)
Prep Time: 7 Minutes
Bake Time: 20 Minutes, Divided
Total Time: 27 Minutes

INGREDIENTS

Meatballs

Fresh Oregano (1 tsp)
Fresh Rosemary (1 tsp)
Breadcrumbs (1/4 cup)
Ground Beef (1/2 lb, room temperature)
Ground Veal (1/2 lb, room temperature)
Fresh Garlic (1 clove, grated)
Egg (1)
Salt (1/4 tsp)
Pepper (1/4 tsp)
Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Everything Else

Eat The Ball Football Rolls (1 Pack of 4, defrosted to room temperature)
Provolone (4 round slices)
Spicy Tomato Sauce

 

The Quinticential Football Shaped Superbowl Meatball Subs

KITCHEN ITEMS

Stock Pot
Wooden Spoon
Large Mixing Bowl
Baking Sheet
Tongs
Meat Thermometer
Bread Knife
Tablespoon
Toothpicks (4)

If you’re making your sauce by hand like I did, you should get that going before starting on these steps. Here’s the recipe. See you soon!

You’re back! Here’s the play by play.

The Quinticential Football Shaped Superbowl Meatball Subs

1. MIX IT UP. preheat your oven to 450°

In your mixing bowl, combine your beef, veal, egg, oregano, rosemary, garlic, egg, salt and pepper.

Use your hands to mix it together until your mixture is evenly integrated.

Coat your baking sheet with your oil.

Using your hands, roll golf sized balls out of your mixture.

Line them out on your baking sheet.

Bake until your meat thermometer reads 165°—about 10-15 minutes.

The Quinticential Football Shaped Superbowl Meatball Subs

2. TO MAKE YOUR FOOTBALL SUBS. turn your oven’s heat to 250°.

Using your bread knife, cut your Eat The Ball Football breads nearly in half along their seam—you want to keep the top and bottom slightly together to keep that sub feeling.

Lay a slice of your provolone in each of your Eat The Ball Football breads so that it covers the whole inside.

Set aside.

The Quinticential Football Shaped Superbowl Meatball Subs

3. SAUCE TIME. heat your sauce in your stock pot.

Using your tongs, add all of your meatballs into your sauce.

Using your wooden spoon, move your meatballs around so that they are fully coated in your sauce.

Let them cook for two minutes.

The Quinticential Football Shaped Superbowl Meatball Subs

4. PUT IT ALL TOGETHER. use your tablespoon to scoop a tablespoon of your sauce onto your provolone.

Use your tongs to put three meatballs in each of your provolone coated Eat The Ball Football breads.

For each sub, stick a toothpick through the top of the bread and into your middle meatball—this will keep your sandwich together better when cooking.

Bake until your provolone drips down over your meatballs—about 5 minutes.

Remove your toothpicks.

Serve hot and enjoy the game (or at least the amazing food and creative commercials)!

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The Spicy Tomato Sauce You’ll Want To Pour On Everything

Created specially for my awesome Superbowl Eat The Ball football shaped meatball subs. That said, definitely put it on everything!

The Spicy Tomato Sauce You'll Want To Pour On Everything

Servings: 2 Cups
Prep Time: 5 Minutes
Cook Time: 1 Hour 7 Minutes
Total Time: 1 Hour 13 Minutes

INGREDIENTS

Extra Virgin Olive Oil (1/4 cup)
Yellow Onion (1, finely diced)
Bay Leaf (1)
Fresh Garlic (2 cloves, finely chopped)
Fresh Oregano (1 tsp, finely chopped)
Fresh Thyme (1/2 tsp, finely chopped)
Fresh Rosemary (1 tsp, finely chopped)
Crushed Red Pepper Flakes (3/4 tbsp)
Tomato Paste (3 tbsp)
Canned San Marzano Peeled Tomatoes (28 oz, keep and use the liquid)
Salt
Pepper

KITCHEN ITEMS

Stock Pot
Wooden Spoon
Cutting Board
Chef’s Knife

The Spicy Tomato Sauce You'll Want To Pour On Everything

1. GETTIN’ SAUCY. over medium-high heat, heat your oil in your stock pot.

Using your wooden spoon, consistently mix in your onions, garlic, bay leaf, oregano, thyme and rosemary.

With your wooden spoon, move your ingredients around allowing them to sweat but not brown—about 5-7 minutes.

Mix in your tomato paste and canned tomatoes.

Season with your crushed red pepper flakes, salt and pepper.

Bring your sauce to a boil.

Lower your heat and let your sauce simmer for an hour.

Use your wooden spoon to stir every 5-10 minutes to keep your ingredients from burning.

Once your sauce is simmering, multitask and move on to the other steps in your meatball sub recipe.

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6 NYC Chocolate Shops To Wow Your Valentine

6 NYC Chocolate Shops To Wow Your Valentine

La Maison Du Chocolat

1018 Madison Avenue, NYC 10075 (more NYC locations)

Pop Gift Box | 4 Piece – $18, 8 Piece – $35, 15 Piece – $54, 24 Piece – $82

While sitting back and sipping hot chocolate and nibbling on ganache filled and flavored macaron in the La Maison Du Chocolate cafe, I learned all about the incredible attention placed on their Valentine’s Day Chocolate boxes. For months, flavors are tested, balanced, foraged and explored until finally, every blue poppy seed is perfectly placed and the essence of the chocolate combinations have come together to take you on a flavor journey around the world.

This one’s tough. While you can’t go wrong exploring La Maison Du Chocolat’s “Heart Gift Box” with a mix of their store’s more iconic flavors alongside two of the ones created especially for Valentines Day, their “Pop Gift Box” has all four of the limited edition flavors—Red Enchantment, Blue Frisson, Orange Passion and Yellow Fusion. I say get both! If you’re particular about getting one, for some weird reason, I vote for going with the Pop Gift Box and coming back the week after Valentine’s Day to try every single chocolate in their shop.

 

6 NYC Chocolate Shops To Wow Your Valentine

Vosges

132 Spring Street, NYC 10012

16 Piece Exotic Truffle Renegade Heart | $55

I like to think of myself as edgy, cool and super sweet to those who deserve it. And, now, I’ve officially discovered my Valentine’s Day chocolate box counterpart at Vosges. With it’s trendy, seriously prickly exterior contrasting its complexly sweet chocolaty interior, consider me obsessed!

This individually hand studded Renegade Box filled with sixteen exotic truffles infused with spices, roots, herbs and flowers from around the world, is perfect for your cooler other half or even better for you, your awesome self and, well, you (again).

FYI, they have several other amazing Valentines-y boxes and treats to explore—I highly recommend getting them all!

6 NYC Chocolate Shops To Wow Your Valentine

Jacques Torres

1186 3rd Avenue, NYC 10021 (more NYC locations)

34 Piece Heart Box | $50

After meeting master pastry chef Jacques Torres (though I’m 100% sure he’d prefer to be called “Mr. Chocolate”), I am not at all surprised by the super fun and sexy chocolates he has created for this Valentines day. From a kissing game chocolate box, where under each chocolate you are told where or how to kiss your lover, to the “do not disturb” door sign created entirely out of chocolate, to the “spanker” sticks that well, I think you can figure those out in a hands on demonstration kind of way (wink, wink, nudge, nudge). there is so much fun to be had!

In case this is a new relationship and you are being extra cautious about being, let’s say, “super forward”, or you simply prefer a more classic and romantic vibe, there is a gorgeous heart box filled with Jacques’ signature praline bonbons, ganache bonbons, exotic tea and spice infused bonbons, fruit and wine bonbons some even with great pop art details—like a kiss or love bug. You simply can’t go wrong.

6 NYC Chocolate Shops To Wow Your Valentine

L.A. Burdick

5 East 20th Street, NYC 10003

Signature Assortments Box | Petite 10 Piece – $16, Small 16 Piece – $22, Medium 32 Piece – $38, Large 64 Piece – $68

I couldn’t contain myself. It was too cute! I immediately fell in love with L.A. Burdick’s little mouse chocolate—and isn’t that what Valentine’s Day is all about? Love? In visiting L.A. Burdick to pick up a Valentine’s Day chocolate box for this feature, I ran into their chocolatier Michael Klug. It immediately became clear how we both shared this strong love for his chocolates—I, the love at first sight with sir mouse and he with, well, all of them. We spent some time chatting and he shared some incredible insight into the practices and care that they put into their exquisite chocolates.

I’m told all of their chocolates are made once a week in small batches. The hope is that people will make their Valentine’s Day purchase closer to Valentine’s Day. The closer you eat chocolates to the day they were made, the better they taste. Much like most foods, they are fresher and more flavorful. So, don’t feel like a slacker walking into the shop day of to nab your Valentine amazing chocolates, think of yourself as an educated chocolate connoisseur! That said, it should be noted that since the batches are small, there may be a slight gamble going in day of.

As a side note, if you are buying a Valentine for a scotch lover, they have a great box of scotch infused chocolates. It’s a killer flavor tour!

6 NYC Chocolate Shops To Wow Your Valentine

Stick With Me

202A Mott Street, NYC 10012

Bonbon Boxes | 6 Piece – $25, 12 Piece – $49, 24 Piece – $88

Each individual Stick With Me bonbon is more beautiful than the one next to it. They are show stoppers! Biting into one, you will see that they are just as beautiful on the inside as on the out. Getting these bonbons is almost like buying your love, friend, or family member a bouquet of flowers. Each one is handmade and individually painted—like a flower, no two are exactly the same.

These bonbon all too perfect for that trendy, artsy, sophisticated, dorky, cool—you see where I’m getting here, they’re the perfect Valentine for everyone. Ooh, and they are packaged in boxes constructed to look like books. Keep that faux book forever and hide your treasures in it. With these chocolates being as amazing as they are, I plan to have a faux home library one day soon.

Of all the shops on this guide, these bonbons are the most unique when it comes to texture and flavor. The “Black Sesame & Passion” is exactly what it sounds like. It has an exciting savory flavor that you wouldn’t expect to get when your teeth crunch through the shell of a beautiful bonbon. It’s such a fun flavor journey.

With twenty-four flavors to try you’re going to want to get their faux book that fits one of each. I’m envisioning the perfect date as exploring each one by eating half and having your date eat the other half. Such a perfect journey together.

If you weren’t sold already, it should be noted that I first encountered Stick With Me at the Dessert Professionals Magazine event where they were being honored as one of the top ten chocolatiers in North America.

6 NYC Chocolate Shops To Wow Your Valentine

Voila Chocolat

221 West 79th Street, NYC 10024

22 Valentine’s Bonbons in Red Heart Box | $84.92

I first met the chocolatiers of Voila Chocolat at Dessert Professional Magazine’s event where they were being honored as one of the top ten chocolatiers in North America, These masters of chocolate have taken their expertise to a whole new level. Walk into their shop, take a seat, and they’ll teach you how to mold and decorate your own chocolate creations. Much like going out to paint your own pottery, you select what you want to make—a lollipop, a turtle sculpture, bark to name a few—and then you customize it using their guidance. In case you haven’t already gotten the gist of what I’m getting to, you can make your valentine thoughtfully crafted custom chocolates! How sweet (pun totally intended)!

Of course they also have packaged Valentines for your sweetest to pick from. There are chocolate lollipops, a heart shaped box of bonbons, heart shaped chocolate puzzles—the works! While you’re making these tough decisions, sip on one of their super unique matcha hot chocolates, it’s incredible! I hear on some days they have a banana hot chocolate—so going back STAT!

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Winning Game Day Superbowl Bacon Chicken Burgers

I first met the wonderful people behind La Brea Bakery’s breads at an event at the Tasting Table Test Kitchen where the whole menu was built around their amazing breads, then again at the Taste Talks Food Festival where I found myself demolishing sandwiches from their bread truck. The point is, there has never been a moment where I’ve encountered their bread and it wasn’t amazing. These breads truly bring any dish they’re in to the next level—it’s no wonder they’re the number one selling artisan bread in the country!

I used the La Brea Bakery Telera Sliders to build this recipe for you. It was the hearth-baked, golden brown, sourdough with a touch of sweetness that both caught my eye and stomach. Like all other dishes they are in, they truly elevate these burgers.

FYI, you can easily find them stocked at Costco, Safeway and Kroger amongst several other shops. There is a great bread locator tool on their site.

La Brea Bakery is used to taking life to the next level, but I’m not only talking about with their delicious breads. They blew my mind with their recent Superbowl sweepstakes (closed now). They sent a lucky winner all expenses paid to the Superbowl! I know, there’s so much to love when it comes to the world of La Brea!

Winning Game Day Superbowl Bacon Chicken Burgers

Servings: 6 Burgers
Prep Time: 10 Minutes
Cook Time: 12 Minutes
Bake Time: 10 Minutes
Total Time: 32 Minutes

INGREDIENTS

Candied Bacon
Bacon (4, thick cut slices)
Light Brown Sugar (1/2 cup)

Burger
Ground Chicken (1 lb, room temperature)
Ground Turkey (1 lb, room temperature)
Fresh Garlic (2 cloves, finely chopped)
Fresh Rosemary (1 tbsp, finely chopped)
Fresh Thyme (3/4 tbsp, finely chopped)
Salt
Pepper
Vegetable Oil

Truffle Mayonnaise
Mayonnaise (6 tbsp)
Lemon Zest (1/4 tsp)
Fresh Garlic (1 clove, grated)
Truffle Oil (1 tbsp)
Salt
Pepper

Toppings
La Brea Bakery Telera Sliders (6)
Swiss Cheese (6 Slices)
Arugula (1 oz)
Avocado (1/2, cut horizontally into 6 rings)

KITCHEN ITEMS

Baking Sheet (2)
Oven Safe Cooking Rack
Large Mixing Bowl
Medium Mixing Bowl
Small Mixing Bowl
Whisk
Tongs
Cutting Board
Chef’s Knife
Grill Pan
Metal Spatula
Meat Thermometer

Winning Game Day Superbowl Bacon Chicken Burgers

1. YOU’RE BACON ME CRAZY. preheat your oven to 400°.

Put your wire rack on your baking sheet.

Pour your sugar into your medium mixing bowl.

One by one, coat your slices of bacon into your sugar by tossing them around in your bowl.

Line them on your wire rack.

Bake till 160°—about 10 minutes.

While these are baking, multitask and move onto your next steps.

Winning Game Day Superbowl Bacon Chicken Burgers

2. WHICH CAME FIRST, THE CHICKEN OR THE TURKEY. in your large mixing bowl, combine your chicken, turkey, rosemary, thyme, garlic, salt and pepper.

Using your hands, mix it all together until your ingredients are evenly combined.

Still using your hands, make six burger patties.

Over medium-high heat, coat your grill pan with your vegetable oil.

Once your oil is hot, put your patties on your grill pan making sure that once you place them, you leave them untouched.

You’re oil is hot enough when your patties sizzle frantically when touching it.

Cook for 6 minutes on each side—make sure to test with your thermometer, your burgers should be 165°.

Winning Game Day Superbowl Bacon Chicken Burgers

2. IT’S ALL ABOUT THE BREAD. Turn your oven to 250°.

Cut your La Brea Bakery Telera Sliders in half and place them cut side up on your baking sheet.

Lay your swiss cheese slices on the cut side of the top of your sandwich.

Bake for 4 minutes—or till your cheese is melted and your bread toasted.

Winning Game Day Superbowl Bacon Chicken Burgers

3. MAYO TO MAKE YO DREAMS COME TRUE. in your small mixing bowl, whisk together your mayonnaise, lemon zest, grated garlic, truffle oil, salt and pepper.

Winning Game Day Superbowl Bacon Chicken Burgers

4. GOING FOR THE TOUCHDOWN. place the bottom half of your La Brea Bakery Telera Sliders on the plate you plan to serve them on.

Place your burger patty on top.

Layer on your slice of avocado.

Add on a pinch of your arugula.

Spread your aioli on the cheesy side of the top piece of your La Brea Bakery Telera Sliders.

Close your burger with the your cheesy aioli covered bread.

Serve!

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