Wednesday, January 20, 2010

finger food for dinner

I'm not a fan of eating in front of the tv every night but once-in-a-while I don't mind. Especially if we have a big game to watch which happened to be the case earlier this week when we watched our KSU Wildcats take on the UT Longhorns and WIN! Knowing we'd want to be near the tv I planned a meal that didn't require any utensils, just our fingers. Sandwiches are an easy way to do this and still feel like you can provide a nutritious meal.

My friend, Kim, shared her recipe with me a couple of years ago for a hot ham and cheese sandwich. Kim brought these on a couples road trip we took. They are the perfect totable food. They're also a great dish to serve at a gathering of friends, maybe for that Superbowl game that's coming up. You can make them ahead of time and then pop them in the oven just 20 minutes before you're ready to eat. I tweak the recipe by using butter rather than margarine and this time I used white cheddar in place of swiss. They were still delicious. (Here's a funny for you: My friend, Sarah, says she always uses butter because "My body knows what to do with butter because it's real food." I told her, "My body knows what to do with it too...pack it on my hips.")

I rounded out the menu with a quick and easy hot spinach dip that you can put together in 10 minutes, serve it with tortilla chips and a side of baby carrots.

Spinach Dip (Courtesy of Desperation Entertaining)
1-9oz. package of frozen creamed spinach
3 oz. cream cheese, softened (if you don't have time to soften it to room temp, it won't matter)
1/2 c. shredded Swiss cheese (I've used Pepper Jack and Monterey Jack too)
1/4 c. mayonnaise
1/2 tsp. onion powder
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/4 tsp. black pepper

Peel back a corner of the spinach and place it in the microwave on high for about 2 minutes, or until thawed. Combine the spinach with all of the remaining ingredients in a small, microwave-safe bowl. Stir well. Microwave the spinach dip, uncovered on high, until bubbly, about 5 minutes, stopping once halfway through to stir. Serve at once.

Do you have a favorite fingers only meal that you serve your family? If so, please share it in the comments.