Ally's Sweet and Savory Eats: September 2015

Monday, September 28, 2015

$800 Cash Fall Giveaway!

I've teamed up with some fabulous bloggers to give away, what else, but CASH!  
Update your wardrobe, buy the kid's winter gear, plan a weekend getaway!  
Have fun with this!  Good luck!

fall-cash-giveaway-600

Our favorite season FALL has finally arrived and we're celebrating with some of our friends by giving away $800 in PayPal Cash!!! Enter to win the $800 Fall Cash Giveaway

$800 Fall Cash Giveaway!
September 28, 2015  at 12 a.m. EST to October 5, 2015 at 11:59 p.m. EST Open Worldwide Prize: 1 winner will receive $800 PayPal cash. Eligibility and Rules: NO PURCHASE NECESSARY TO ENTER OR WIN. A PURCHASE DOES NOT IMPROVE YOUR CHANCES OF WINNING. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW. This giveaway is open to individuals over the age of the majority in their home country. The winner will be chosen randomly through the Rafflecopter form. It is the sole responsibility of the winner to adhere to all laws in their respective country, which includes payments to any governing tax body. Winner Selection: The winner of the giveaway will be selected in a random drawing through Rafflecopter from among all eligible entries received throughout the promotion period. The random drawing will be conducted within 48 hours of the closing of the giveaway by Pretty My Party or its designated representatives, whose decisions are final. Odds of winning will vary depending on the number of eligible entries received. Winner will be notified by email by hello@prettymyparty.com. Potential winner must accept the prizes by email as directed by Pretty My Party within 48 hours of notification. Any winner notification not responded to or returned as undeliverable may result in prize forfeiture. The potential prize winner may be required to sign and return an affidavit of eligibility and release of liability, and a Publicity Release (collectively “the Prize Claim Documents”). Privacy: All entrants acknowledge that if they are chosen as a winner, some of their personally identifying information may be disclosed to third parties at least as required by law, including, without limitation, on a winner’s list. All personal information submitted as part of the giveaway may be shared by and between the promotion entities, and each of the promotion entities will use such information in accordance with their respective independent online privacy policies. See Pretty My Party’s full privacy policy here. Rafflecopter Disclaimer: This promotion is powered by Rafflecopter. Metric Feat LLC (“Rafflecopter”) does not sponsor, administer or endorse this promotion. By entering this giveaway, participants agree to Rafflecopter’s Privacy Policy. Social Media Disclaimer: Entrants should understand that they are providing their information to the sponsors of the giveaway and not to Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, Instagram or Google+. This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with any of these social media sites. Disclaimer: This giveaway is blog sponsored and is in no way associated with PayPal. If there are any questions, please email hello@prettymyparty.com.
PLEASE USE THE RAFFLECOPTER FORM BELOW TO ENTER
The more entries you complete on the Rafflecopter form, the higher your chances are of winning. If you don’t have time to fill out all of the entries you may come back and complete any entries that you may have missed. 

Good Luck!


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Saturday, September 26, 2015

Fiesta Party Dip

Talk about the perfect party dip.  Your friends will be licking the bowl clean.

fiesta party dip (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

It was just the kids and I this week {and it's the same for next week}.  We did pretty good.  Most days were filled with school, playing outside, early dinners and even earlier bedtimes.  This mama wants some peace!

Now I am not a perfect mom and I do not have perfect children.  Many days I'm running around here picking up messes and negotiating with a four year old {which is senseless by the way}.  I would love to tell you they work out their own arguments, but frankly I'm just happy when my oldest doesn't want to eat his sister for lunch.

So when I made this dip to take to our friend's house to watch football and we had a scant leftover the next day, I feed it to my kid's for snack.  They had had a good day.

If you know me, that is NOT normal.  I normally force feed them carrots, snack mix, apple slices or string cheese.  Imagine their faces when I brought out the dip!  They peppered me with four thousand questions {and in my head I was thinking....just eat it before I change my mind!}

fiesta party dip (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

This stuff is addicting.

There wasn't a mouth at our gathering that didn't like it.  And trust me, you need to eat it with Fritos.  You know the corn chip.  The iconic chip scooper.  For whatever reason it is perfect with this dip and makes you eat about 25 scoopfuls.

Which isn't good.

But at the same time, oh so good....

It's filled with creamy sour cream, corn, tomatoes, cheese, peppers and more.  Better yet, I'd even put money on your 5 year old making it correctly.  Truly a dump, stir and chill dip.

And it tastes fabulous the next day for a snack.

Fiesta Party Dip

16 oz. sour cream
1 10 oz. can Rotel, drained
1 12 oz. can Mexicorn
2 c. Mexican shredded cheese
1 pkg. ranch seasoning mix
Fritos for dipping

1.  In a bowl combine all ingredients.  Chill for at least one hour before serving.
2.  Serve with Frito corn chips.



fiesta party dip (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

Hey guess what guys?

I'm headed to Kansas City in a few weeks to attend the Chopped Con Food Blogger Conference.  To say I'm excited is an understatement!  The speakers {many of them food bloggers} are some girls I know and many I am just super stoked to hear speak.

Many people don't realize that being a food blogger is a JOB, and although just part-time for me, I take it seriously and I'm always looking for ways to expand and get better.  Just like any other job - you take part in continuing education.

These conferences are my continuing education.  I hope to come back filled with ideas and have a revamped energy.  Be sure to follow me for some behind-the-scenes sneak peaks!

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Harvest Muffins

These bite-sized mini muffins are perfect for snacks on-the-go and kid's lunches!

harvest muffins (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

I've been letting our oldest look at the school lunch menu every night to determine if he wants to eat it the next day or pack his lunch.  It is quite the BIG DEAL.  I guess lunch is already a hot topic in Kindergarten.

Because let's face it.  His favorite subjects so far are gym, recess and lunch.

We got him this pretty nifty Bento lunch box for his birthday and I love it!  It keeps things cold, non-leaking and fun.  We got him this lunch bag.  This travel cup.  And these containers.  I really, really, strongly recommend these items.  I've {and the munchkin} have had a great experience with them.

So when it finally got shipped from Amazon {and by finally, I mean we checked the mailbox daily upon someone's request} I needed to figure out what to pack in the darn thing.  I'm not one of those moms that will send a sandwich, Hostess cupcake and a bag of Doritos.  Maybe on a very special day like a field trip, but not on a normal basis.

Check out my Instagram feed and you see some examples.

Typical items will be a half sandwich, applesauce, cottage cheese, carrots, celery, raisins, almonds, granola bars, cheese, crackers, fruit and the like.  Sometimes even leftovers.  And guess what?  Now, these muffins!


harvest muffins (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

These bite-sized beauties are perfect for lunches.  And they are healthy.  But you would never know it.  I filled mine with shredded apple, zucchini and carrot.  And folded in some raisins for good measure.

The only problem was getting my kids to STOP eating them.  Being bite-sized they thought they could grab three every time they walked through the kitchen.  That, I had to put a stop too.  And now that I think about it I should have made a double batch right from the start.

It's on my list for tomorrow {along with a batch of these pumpkin cinnamon rolls for my girls at MOPS}.

harvest muffins (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

Hey, even if you don't have kids.....please make these.  Anyone likes them!  Perfect for on-the-go breakfasts {can easily be frozen} or a homemade gift for a neighbor.  Plus, I do live in Iowa and it is harvest season {you know, when we pick the corns and beans} so they are perfect to bring along in the combine.

Lost ya yet?  A combine is the vehicle used to pick this produce.

Anyway.

Harvest Fingers

1 1/4 c. whole wheat flour
1 t. baking soda
2 t. cinnamon
1/2 t. salt
2 eggs
1/2 c. coconut oil, melted
1/3 c. brown sugar
1 apple, grated {juice included}
1 large carrot, grated
1 zucchini, grated {drained}
1/2 c. raisins

1.  Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and grease mini muffin tins {makes 32}.
2.  In a bowl combine the eggs, coconut oil, grates fruit and veggies.
3.  Sift together the dry ingredients and mix together.  Fold in the raisins.
4.  Fill the muffin tins 3/4 of the way full.
5.  Bake for 16 minutes.

Like other foods in muffin form?

These have been pretty popular on the blog as well.


harvest muffins (sweetandsavoryfood.com)


Sunday, September 20, 2015

Crock Pot Chicken & Noodles

This slow cooker dish could be made by a child - it is that simple.  And delicious!

crock pot chicken and noodles (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

We left the windows open in our house last night and this morning upon waking it feels a bit like a freezer....but I love it.

In fact, the thought crossed my mind to make this dish again, twice in a couple of weeks, just because of the chill in the air.  We always crave something warm and comforting when Fall is approaching.  At least I do.

I have never, ever made homemade chicken and noodles before.  I've been given recipes. Even from friends who aren't huge cooks.

"It's so easy!"

"Just have a lot of counter space to lay out the noodles!"

We'll frankly it all sounds a bit intimidating.  Maybe if I didn't have three kids under feet, as I know it'd be a circus freak show.  I'd need to be home ALONE.  And well, that doesn't happen all too often.

crock pot chicken and noodles (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

So in my head, I thought, why not try making it in the crock pot?  I could simmer the chicken all day, giving it that home cooked taste and then just throw in the noodles shortly before eating, as they could cook in the broth.

In my head it all sounded perfect.

And guess what?  My head was right!  It worked.  And it was glorious.

Now let me point out.  It is truly a carb on carb meal.  I felt like I needed to keep it traditional and serve it over mashed potatoes {or homemade biscuits} so that is what I did. But honestly, I would have been fine just eating it as is.  That is how we ate the leftovers, right out of a bowl and served over nothing.

But it was comforting and warm and perfect.

Crock Pot Chicken & Noodles

4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
2 15 oz. cans cream of chicken soup
1 large box chicken broth {4 cups}
1 t. garlic powder
1 t. pepper
1 t. salt
1 24 oz. pkg. Amish egg noodles

1.  In a large crock pot place the chicken, soup, broth and seasonings.  Cook on LOW for 6 hours.
2.  Using two forks shred the chicken in the crock pot and allow to sit in the broth.
3.  Add in the noodles, stir and cover again, cooking for another hour or so or until noodles are done.
4.  Serve warm over mashed potatoes, biscuits or by itself.

What is your comforting meal of choice?  
Just when the weather starts to turn?


Thursday, September 17, 2015

How to Incorporate Salad Night Once a Week

It's super easy to fall in a dinner rut.  
Make this one change and it takes care of one day each week!

how to incorporate salad night once a week (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

I'm not sure if it was the hot August and early September we've had or if I've just gotten lazy {probably more of the truth}, but once a week I have totally changed up our dinner routine.

But let me start with this.

For as long as I can remember, I've never really been a salad girl.  I remember going to Applebee's in high school {we thought this was fine dining} and one of my best friends would always, always order their grilled chicken salad with the hot mustard bacon dressing. And she would go on and on and on about it.

In my head, I was always like...."It's a freaking salad!  My burger tops your salad hands down". Regardless I don't ever remember ordering a salad for my meal growing up.  Side salad?  Sure.  But, a dinner dish always followed.

But then, slowly, very slowly, as I grew up I started eating more salads.  I learned they didn't have to be just lettuce and dressing, but that heck, you could top them with WHATEVER you wanted.  The salad police don't exist.  There isn't anyone over my shoulder telling me what to do.

how to incorporate salad night once a week (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

Thankfully, we started our kids early when it came to salads.  We always put lettuce on their plates with a bit of dressing.  They are expected to eat it and finish it {we're a bit mean like that - I know not everyone agrees}.

So now at the ages of 6 and 4 {16 month old still gets a pass, although I will throw lettuce on her tray and she plays with it}, they are all about salads.  Thank god, they aren't going to turn out like me.  It took me almost 30 years to fall in love with the darn things.

Now, like I said earlier, I got a little lazy this summer.  It was hot.  Come 4 p.m. the kids would turn into monsters and the last thing I wanted to do was turn on the oven and slave over the store.  One random weekday night I served a salad bar for dinner.

When I announced this they all looked at me odd and I knew in their heads they were thinking, "what else are we having?"

But what they didn't know was that I made the salad bar FUN.  I grabbed every vegetable, protein and dressing I could find and gave them CHOICES.  It wasn't the typical mom-throws-lettuce-on-your-plate type of salad.

I chopped up cucumbers and tomatoes and carrots and hard boiled eggs and cheese and even made our favorite homemade thousand island dressing.  I grilled up chicken earlier in the day and seasoned it with this barbecue seasoning and put it all in colorful little bowls and made a salad bar.

And you know what?

They thought it was flipping Christmas Eve.

how to incorporate salad night once a week (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

After we did this once, I thought why am I not doing this once a week? 

1.  It allows me the chance to use up a handful of produce on the brink of death in my fridge.

2.  It gives me peace of mind knowing my family is eating pretty darn healthy for ONE night.

3.  It's easy.

I'm usually prepping most of our fresh produce on Sunday for the week {if you follow me on Instagram, you already know this!}, so I'm not spending a ton of time getting this salad together.  It really is just a matter of throwing all the sides in pretty bowls for my kids to get excited about.

Presentation is key!  Kids love when they get to pick and choose what goes in their salad.  My general rule is they have to pick four toppers.  So that leaves a couple items they can bypass. Trust me you'll be surprised how they'll come around when it comes to their veggies when you make it fun for them.

Then the key is to REPEAT, REPEAT, REPEAT.

Keep serving the salad bar once a week so they get used to it.  And let's be honest {so the husband gets used to it}.  And who doesn't love having one meal already planned each week?  I sure do.

So, what do you think?  Can you make this change in your house?

Let me know your thoughts, concerns and the like, I'd love to hear them!

Monday, September 14, 2015

Loaded M&M Bars



There isn't a bite in this bar not filled with sweet and salty goodness.
What are you waiting for....read on!

loaded M&M bars (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

Before I dive into these bars, let us talk about life a bit.....okay?

Is every mother out there with littles running around like a chicken with their head cut off or is it just me?  If I'm not taking someone to school, picking another one up from school, running errands, making meals or breaking up fights I'm probably in the bathroom.

Hiding.

Sometimes with chocolate.

A girl just has to get away from the madness.  Don't pretend you don't do this.  I have two weeks coming up where the husband is gone for work.  {i.e. I might be in the bathroom a LOT}.  During my last eventful day that almost made me lose my mind, I took one of these leftover bars, sat on the toilet and locked the door.

I had a screaming 15 month old on the other side, but let me tell you that M&M bar never tasted so good.

loaded M&M bars (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

I took a pan of these to our friend's house on Labor Day weekend for a party.  We feasted on smoked chicken and ham, tons of salads and even more trays of dessert.  Good thing I ate early there as not too far into the festivities our middle child got hit in the eye with a golf club by a classmate.

After a full swing.

Did you know facial wounds bleed a lot?  

Well, they do.

So I spent the next two hours in the E.R. with her getting stitches.  She was a trooper.  Didn't cry a wink getting a shot or getting stitched up.  I am not shocked she is our first E.R. trip. She is THAT child.

loaded M&M bars (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

Needless to say after a few busy, trying days I needed a leftover treat in the bathroom by myself.  It was glorious, even with a screaming child wanting her mama on the other side of the door.  I am not ashamed to admit every once in awhile I need a breather.

These bars are chock full of fun stuff.  Pretzels, M&Ms, chocolate chips, butterscotch chips and butter, did I fail to mention butter?

Sorry.  I throw a handful of really bad for you recipes at you every so often, it's just what I do.  But if you only eat one out of the WHOLE pan it really isn't that bad.  You'll get over it.

Loaded M&M Bars

2 sticks butter, melted
2 eggs
1 c. white sugar
1 c. brown sugar
2 T. vanilla extract
2 c. flour
1/2 c. mini chocolate chips
1/2 c. butterscotch chips
1 c. M&M's
1 c. crushed pretzels
1/2 c. whole pretzels

1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease a 9x13 pan.
2.  Melt the butter in a microwave safe bowl and then let cool.
3.  In a stand mixer combine the cooled melted butter, sugars and vanilla.  Add in eggs one at a time to combine.
4.  Sift in the flour forming a dough.
5.  Fold in chips, M&M's, and crushed pretzels.
6.  Spread batter into the greased pan and top with whole pretzels.
7.  Bake for 22-24 minutes or until golden brown.

loaded M&M bars (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

Like these bars?  I love bars, as they are just MUCH easier than cookies.  I've gathered some of my favorites for you to check out.  Give them a view!


Friday, September 11, 2015

The Final Cone-Down with Blue Bunny Ice Cream




My celebration with Blue Bunny continues...summer is NOT over yet!
Be sure to read this whole post for fun contest and giveaway information.


final cone-down blue bunny (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

Y'all summer is not over!  Yet.  We all think summer is over once Labor Day has come and passed, but let's be honest, other than school starting, it's still hot.  We are still mowing our lawns.  We are still hosting backyard barbecues.

So, in my book, it's still alive and kicking.

I have been honored to partner with Blue Bunny this summer on their various projects and this last one takes the cake.  They are celebrating summer right down to the very last cone. They are calling it The Final Cone-Down and you won't believe are the fun and exciting prizes they are giving away.

Here is a video teaser!

{View it quick and come on back....}


You can visit Blue Bunny's Facebook page everyday from now until September 22 for a chance to win cool prizes, including personal electronics and some other great gear.  I will also be giving away some goods so make sure to keep reading.

Blue Bunny wants everyone to hold on to that last drop of summer sunshine and what better way to do that than with ice cream!  From now until September 22 you can submit a photo of yourself enjoying the last few days of summer using #TheFinalConeDown and #BlueBunnyWinBig on Instagram or Twitter.  Once submitted Blue Bunny will confirm your entry, then sit back, relax and see if you win!  Official rules can be found here.

final cone-down blue bunny (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

I invited a girlfriend over along with her kiddos one day for lunch and ice cream of course.  It was our own little final cone-down!

Our spread included classic Blue Bunny vanilla ice cream, cones, mini M&M's, mini chocolate chips, butterscotch chips, chocolate chip cookie pieces, hot fudge, caramel and marshmallow creme. Whew! The kids were super excited....it's not everyday we indulge them like this.

final cone-down blue bunny (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

I had never held an ice cream bar at my house and I'm starting to wonder why and the heck haven't I? Especially with three kids under the age of 6.  Should this have been on my radar?

This spontaneous little party even threw the kids for a loop.  

"We get ice cream after lunch?"

"On a Tuesday?"

"Is it someone's birthday?"

Yes, yes and nope!

final cone-down blue bunny (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

Their responses were the exact reason why I love how Blue Bunny is challenging everyone to extend their summer fun.  Because why can't we have ice cream on a Tuesday afternoon in between preschool drop-offs and school pick-ups and after school programs and the like?

Will you make time for it, like I did?

I even indulged on this random Tuesday.  I've really been limiting my sweets {such a horrible problem to have}, but I let myself have a big old ice cream sundae.  Remember that list of toppings I rambled off earlier?  Yeah, my sundae included every single one of them, right down to the marshmallow creme.

It was beyond delicious.

final cone-down blue bunny (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

So here's the fun part.  I'm giving away 5 coupons to my readers for a FREE Blue Bunny product.  A half gallon of ice cream, a box of ice cream sandwiches or cones, whatever your family enjoys.  Enter via the Rafflecopter buttons below.  I'll be picking 5 READERS to each win a FREE coupon on Sunday, September 13th.  Good luck!

And in the meantime, don't forget to submit your summer photo HERE for a chance to win a slew of great prizes!  #TheFinalConeDown #BlueBunnyWinBig

Although being compensated by Blue Bunny, all opinions are my own.  #ad


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Green Chile Chicken Casserole



Break out the chips and salsa!
The creamy, comforting Mexican-style dish is a crowd pleaser!

green chile chicken casserole (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

I love Mexican food.  Love, love, love Mexican food.  Right behind pizza, I'd also eat it multiple times a week if my hips didn't mind.

A girlfriend and I were just chatting the other day about how we NEED a girl's night soon. Preferably one involving gallons of salsa, baskets of chips and a bucket of margaritas.  Of course it would also need to come with a built-in babysitter for the next day as we'd be pretty much worthless on the parenting front.

But we'd have fun!

I've said before that we have at least one Mexican inspired dish a week.  Thank god my family craves the stuff too or I'd be one unhappy camper.  This dish was a fun 'taco' replacement last week.  My girl Kristen, from Iowa Girl Eats, had a similar recipe on her site last year.  I took inspiration from her and tweaked it to what I had on hand and what we liked.

green chile chicken casserole (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

And those brown casserole dishes?  I've had people ask about them.  They are from Rachael Ray's line of Bubble and Brown kitchenware.  You can check them out HERE in her classic fiery orange. Mine are a deep brown, but she has about every color in the book.

I also deeply, deeply, want her 9x13 lasagna baker in green.  And her cast iron skillet {which I can't seem to find on Amazon right now}.  I have a long, long Christmas list already started.  Hey, when you cook as much as I do, your pots and pans wear out faster than most.  I am in need of some replacements!

Back to this dish.  You need to serve it with a side of salsa, guac, sour cream and tortilla chips.  You just HAVE too.  It's essential.  The green chiles give it a nice kick and the dollup of sour cream on top makes it perfect.  

Green Chile Chicken Casserole

3 c. chicken broth
3/4 c. Stubb's Green Chile Anytime sauce {or two small cans of diced green chiles}
2 c. white rice
1/2 of a white onion, finely diced
2 chicken breasts, cut into chunks
4 oz. diced green chiles {additional}
2 cloves garlic, minced
5 T. flour
2 c. 2% or whole milk
8 oz. mozzarella cheese
1/2 c. sour cream
salt
pepper
olive oil

1.  In a small saucepan prepare rice according to package directions.  Instead of using water, use the 3 cups chicken broth and 3/4 cup green chile sauce {or two small cans green chiles}.  When rice is done, fluff with a fork, put the lid back on and set aside.
2.  In a large skillet saute chicken in the olive oil, generously seasoning chicken with the salt and pepper.  Once chicken is cooked, add in additional can of diced green chiles, onion and garlic and saute for another 5 minutes.  Pour this mixture into a bowl and set aside.
3.  Wipe out the skillet you cooked the chicken in.  Add the flour to the milk and whisk together. Pour this into your medium-high heated skillet.
4.  Season with salt and pepper and bring milk mixture up to a low boil, stirring constantly.  Once thickened, stir in the sour cream and sprinkle in the shredded cheese.  Combine to a cream sauce.
5.  Combine cooked rice, chicken and white sauce and pour into a greased 9x13 baking dish.  Place under the broiler for 5 minutes or until just golden.
6.  Serve warm with additional toppings - salsa, chopped tomatoes, cilantro, sour cream, guacamole and chips.

The leftovers are SUPERB as well!  We had two meals of this dish, as it makes quite a bit.  But trust me, you'll like these leftovers.

green chile chicken casserole (sweetandsavoryfood.com)


Saturday, September 5, 2015

Slow Cooker Bourbon Dogs + Cookbook Giveaway



Six ingredients and you are on your way to deliciousness.  It's party time!

slow cooker bourbon dogs fix it and forget it slow cooker magic (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

It's all a bit ridiculous.  You see, when late August and September roll around, I seem to lose my brain and just assume everyone loves appetizers and football as much as I do.

I quickly find out that not everyone feels the same way.  I've served two different appetizers for dinner to my family in the past week.  These bourbon dogs and nachos.  Separately.  As the meal. The kids love it, but the husband kind of looks at me like I've lost my marbles.

Why do people have such a hard time eating an appetizer as a meal?  It's fun!  Geesh,  People can be so up tight.  

Appetizer or not, I do realize that many, many people are NOT football fans, could care less and frankly have stopped reading by now because they are already annoyed.  I get that.  If you talked about soccer or bowling or whatever that sport is where they poke each other with swords I'd be drifting off too.

But, here's the thing.  Football watching = yummy eats.  You know I'm right!  I've never been to a party, where the game is on and good food isn't being served.  So for that reason alone, even if you are a non-football-fall-loving-sports-guru, I still have a WEE bit of faith you are still with me.

slow cooker bourbon dogs fix it and forget it slow cooker magic (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

A version of this recipe came from this great cookbook {p. 18}.  When the publisher recently contacted me wanting to know if I'd like an advanced copy to review and share with my readers I immediately said YES.

#1 - I love my slow cooker.  #2 - all of the recipes are submitted by home cooks.  #3 - the cover looked pretty.  I do judge many books by their cover.  It's a fault I've fully embraced.

With football officially starting and appetizers on my mind, I browsed through the 38 pages of finger foods and started weeding through the ones that stuck out at me.  These bourbon dogs reminded me that people do still buy kielbasa or little smokies at the grocery store.  For awhile I thought only my mom did, but so does Lois Ostrander from Lebanon, PA {the lovely gal who submitted this one}.

slow cooker bourbon dogs fix it and forget it slow cooker magic (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

I grew up eating kielbasa.  It is a fully-cooked mild sausage.  My mom served it just one way. Fried in a skillet with a side of {again} fried potatoes.  Put a big doll-up of ketchup next to both of these on my plate and I was golden from the ages of 4 to 18.

I tried serving this meal to the husband early on in our relationship and it quickly got shut down.  He didn't understand the love.  It disappointed me, but I moved on.  Until about two weeks ago when I saw this recipe and all those memories came flooding back.  I still remember the old skillet my mom used {I think she still has it}, in our old house, in the kitchen that sat at the front of the house and kept her away from all the action in the living room where we all were {she hated that}.

Regardless of all this nostalgia, my family loved these!  Yes, they are spiked with some bourbon, but not much and it cooks off, so chill out folks...they are good!  These would be ideal for a potluck or upcoming football or tailgating party.

Slow Cooker Bourbon Dogs

2 c. ketchup
1 c. brown sugar
1/2 c. bourbon
2 T. dried onion
1/2 c. water
2 pkg. kielbasa sausage, cut into bite sized pieces

1.  Combine all ingredients in a 3 quart slow cooker and cook on HIGH for 3-4 hours.
2.  Stir half way through.
3.  Serve warm.

slow cooker bourbon dogs fix it and forget it slow cooker magic (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

And guess what?  I'm giving a copy of this cookbook away.  To one of you!  Do you like my cute little model?  Her and I have been hanging out this week as preschool for her doesn't start until Tuesday {the days could not drag out any slower}.

I'm keeping this giveaway super simple.  Just leave a comment answering the question below. That's it!  So nothing, I mean NOTHING, should keep you from entering. This cookbook would be a perfect Christmas gift!  You can purchase it HERE, if you want a head start.

Did I just say that?  Sorry.  But if you are like me, I don't buy my gifts until the week prior, so winning this cookbook would be a wonderful head start.

I will pick one random winner on Tuesday, September 8th.  Good luck!

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