Creamy Sausage Dip | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

Creamy Sausage Dip

Creamy Sausage Dip | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

Hey, friends. Thanks so much to those of you who left me sweet words of encouragement after my last post. I’m feeling empowered to make changes, not only to on my site, but in my life in general. I started by buying some brightly colored, elastic waist, wide leg pants to wear on the plane. They’re so comfy, but it’s hard to believe I’m actually allowed to wear these out in public. They’re basically fancy pajamas. I would normally never wear such a wide line for fear of looking fat, but I’m leaning in to cozy comfort and self-care this year, and so far, it’s working out well. Thanks to Kendi for the inspiration

And yet, despite all this willingness to try new things, I’m bringing you another “classic” recipe today. Read: an old recipe from waaaay back when I first started the blog and had no idea what I was doing. Real talk, I don’t have time to test enough new recipes during the week to bring you something brand new every week. Some of the stuff I try is a dud, and I’m not sharing anything with you unless it’s totally awesome. But reshooting old recipes helps me see how much I’ve grown. And even if I’m not as good as the professionals, I’m much better at food photography than I used to be, and that’s something worth being proud of I guess.

Creamy Sausage Dip | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

Now that I’ve figured out how to make English sausage taste like something, I’m feeling much more confident about bringing some of my old recipes back into rotation. Today it’s Creamy Sausage Dip. We eat chips and dip for dinner on the reg, but even if you’re not a heathen and eat actual food for dinner, this is a great hot dip for a game day party, movie night, or other gathering where people are pretending they’re not hungry but actually want to pig out on something savoury and delicious.

I think you might be able to stir just about anything into some warm cream cheese and come out with something heavenly, but spicy bits of sausage and some tomato and chillies definitely work. This dip comes together quickly all in one skillet. You could even make it in a cast-iron and serve it right in that. Damn, I should have done that for my photos.

Creamy Sausage Dip | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

We’re embracing the new and reimagining some classics and generally loving life. Put some creamy sausage dip on your table, and don’t forget to be awesome.

Creamy Sausage Dip
Serves 4
Creamy Sausage Dip is a little bit spicy and a lot bit awesome.
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
15 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
15 min
Ingredients
  1. 8 oz Cumberland sausage, casings removed
  2. 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  3. 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  4. 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  5. 1 clove garlic, minced
  6. 4 ounces chopped tomatoes with chillies
  7. 8 ounces cream cheese
  8. Sturdy chips for dipping
Instructions
  1. In a skillet over medium heat, add your sausage and break it up into small pieces with your wooden spoon. Sprinkle in the cumin, red pepper flakes and black pepper, and stir to mix. Stir occasionally until the sausage is cooked through.
  2. Add the garlic and tomatoes with chillies. Stir to combine.
  3. Finally, add in your cream cheese, and stir until the cream cheese is melted and just starts to bubble.
  4. Transfer your dip to a bowl, or not as you please. Serve warm with your favorite tortilla chips.
Notes
  1. If you're making this recipe in the US, you can just use Jimmy Dean or another bulk breakfast sausage that you love. You may or may not want to omit the cumin and red and black pepper. American sausage is already well seasoned.
Adapted from How to be Awesome on $20 a Day
How to be Awesome on $20 a day http://awesomeon20.com/
Enchilada Queso | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

Enchilada Queso

Enchilada Queso | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

I’m trying this thing where I come home from work and just do whatever I want. Today, that involved finishing off the bottle of Bailey’s, microwaving a tortilla with some cheese and stuffing it in my face, then plopping on the couch to watch old episodes of Big Bang Theory and completely space out. I let my husband order takeaway, and I’m thinking that I might not move.

I guess I’m not 100% successful since I didn’t really want to d any work and yet here I am typing away. I guess I just can’t keep away from my to do list. But I’ve just decided that after I finish writing, I’m going to go put on my pajamas, which will elevate this evening to near perfection.

Enchilada Queso | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

The other day when I was feeling more productive, I made you Enchilada Queso. This is a simple twist on a classic cheese dip involving nothing more complex than adding some store bought stuff t a simple cheese sauce, then scooping it out with tortilla chips until your body can’t take anymore. The enchilada sauce adds a sweet smokiness to the queso that I just love.

We’re sticking to our theme of laziness by combining pre-shredded cheese to a can of evaporated milk along with some corn starch to thicken it. A close of garlic and a green onion add flavor. I buy a jar of enchilada sauce from my grocery store that comes with a packet of seasoning attached to the top, but if you can’t get a sauce/seasoning mash up, you can use a packet of your favorite taco seasoning instead. So so easy.

Enchilada Queso | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

My chips cheese and gravy should be here any minute. Enjoy your Enchilada Queso and laziness, my friends. I plan to enjoy mine.

Enchilada Queso
Serves 6
Enchilada Queso is your favorite cheese dip with a smoky twist.
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
10 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
10 min
Ingredients
  1. 225 grams shredded cheese such as cheddar, Monterrey Jack or colby
  2. 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  3. 1/2 tablespoon butter
  4. 1 clove garlic, minced
  5. 1 green onion, chopped
  6. 1 can evaporated milk
  7. 1 package enchilada or taco seasoning
  8. 1/2 cup enchilada sauce
  9. Chips for dipping
Instructions
  1. In a mixing bowl, toss together your cheese and cornstarch. Set aside.
  2. In a medium sauce pan over low heat, melt your butter then add the minced garlic and chopped green onion. Stir and cook for about a minute until fragrant.
  3. Add your evaporated milk to the pan, then stir in the cheese mixture. Add your seasoning, and stir the mixture occasionally until the cheese melts and the sauce thickens.
  4. Stir in the enchilada sauce, adding a little more or less until it reaches the consistency of your dreams.
  5. Serve warm. This dip is best eaten the first time around, but if you want to reheat it, stir it frequently and add in some extra enchilada sauce or milk if you need to thin it out.
Adapted from Recipe Tin Eats
Adapted from Recipe Tin Eats
How to be Awesome on $20 a day http://awesomeon20.com/
Top 17 of 2017 | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

Top 17 of 2017

Top 17 of 2017 | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

We survived 2017. There were plenty of days when I it seemed like it might all fall apart, but we’ve been granted one more year. If we’re going to get through this year, we’re going to need lots of comfort food to keep us from completely losing our minds. Here were your favorite recipes from 2017.

Peanut Butter Fudge from Awesome on 20

Peanut Butter Fudge

My mom’s peanut butter fudge is back on top this year, and now I’m feeling sad that I didn’t make any. Must change that.

Buffalo Chicken Pinwheels | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

Buffalo Chicken Pinwheels

Can we come up with an excuse for a party so I can make these again?

Classic Crunchy Peanut Butter Cookies | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

Classic Crunchy Peanut Butter Cookies

Nothing beats a classic.

Poinsettia Champagne Cocktail | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

Poinsettia Champagne Cocktail

This drink is the bee’s knees. 

Passion Fruit Green Tea | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

Passion Fruit Green Tea

It’s like the flavor of summertime.

Double Chocolate Muffins | How to Be Awesome on $20 a Day

Double Chocolate Muffins

For when you absolutely positively have to have chocolate for breakfast.

Cheese-Stuffed Meatloaf | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

Cheese Stuffed Meatloaf

All my efforts as a meatloaf evangelist are finally starting to pay off. This one’s filled with mozzarella and topped with tomato sauce, and it’s bad ass.

 

Chicken Parmesan from Awesome on 20

Chicken Parmsan

Always and forever a household favorite.

Cranberry Glazed Turkey Meatloaf | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

Cranberry Glazed Turkey Meatloaf

Our Thanksgiving tradition is still going strong. No one has not loved it.

Buttery Nipple Milkshake | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

Buttery Nipple Milkshake

Sign me up for a boozy cocktail milkshake any day of the week.

Brown Elephant Cocktail from Awesome on 20

Brown Elephant Cocktail 

Amarula forever!

White Cheddar Fondue | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

White Cheddar Fondue

Gooey cheese is one of the four main food groups, right?

Cornbread-Topped Chili Mac | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

Cornbread Topped Chili Mac

I always look forward to eating this. Opt for the extra spicy chili.

Parmesan Fried Gnocchi from Awesome on 20

Parmesan Fried Gnocchi

Best deliciousness to time/effort ratio of all time.

Bacon Cheeseburger Meatloaf | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

Bacon Cheeseburger Meatloaf

This is the third meatloaf on the list, and I’m not mad at it.

Chocolate Kahlua Bread Pudding | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

Chocolate Kahlua Bread Pudding

Just try and stop eating this.

Strawberry Soju Slushie | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

Strawberry Soju Slushie

Mixing Korean spirits with fresh berries? What could go wrong?

Happy 2018, friends. Don’t forget to be awesome.

Garlic & Thyme Baked Camembert | How To Be Awesome on $20 a Day

Garlic & Thyme Baked Camembert

Garlic & Thyme Baked Camembert | How To Be Awesome on $20 a Day

Remember when Pinterest first came out and you could spend hours and hours looking at pictures of things you wanted to eat or wear? You could scroll endlessly through a carefully curated stream of delicious or stylish photos and never get bored. Those were the good ol’ days.

Now some mysterious algorithm decides what I see which is mostly ads. It’s like it doesn’t even matter who you follow anymore. You just see the same 10 ads over and over again. I still use Pinterest constantly to save things I find on the internet, and my board are carefully crafted, but I hardly ever spend time just scrolling anymore. 

Pinterest also used to be a great place for bloggers to share their work with a lot of people for free. But all those ads you’re seeing mean there’s no longer space for bloggers unless they can pay. It was at the moment of this change that I lost all hope that my blog would ever be even moderately popular. C’est la vie. 

Garlic & Thyme Baked Camembert | How To Be Awesome on $20 a Day

All this is to say that this recipe comes from a moment when Pinterest absolutely saved the day. I went to a party with a wheel of Camembert and no idea what I was going to do with it. A quick Pinterest search brought me to this flavor combo. My hosts had everything I needed to make this happen, and it was a hit.

Garlic & Thyme Camembert is really one of those non-recipes. Basically, you remove the plastic from the cheese, put it back in its box, give some cute cross hatch cuts, sprinkle on some flavor, and stick it in the oven until it gets oozy. Serve it with some toasty bread, and you’re golden. No need to tell your party guests how simple it was. 

Garlic & Thyme Baked Camembert | How To Be Awesome on $20 a Day

Change is inevitable. Luckily, we can always count on cheese to be totally awesome. 

Garlic & Thyme Baked Camembert
Serves 4
Garlic & Thyme Baked Camembert is simply delicious.
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
20 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
20 min
Ingredients
  1. 1 wheel Camembert cheese
  2. 1 clove garlic, minced
  3. 1 or 2 sprigs fresh thyme or 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
  4. 1-2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (this is the time to use the tasty stuff)
Instructions
  1. Preheat your oven to 350F (175C).
  2. Remove the wrapping from your cheese and place it back in the box with the lid off. Place it on a baking sheet to catch any drips. Use a sharp knife to cut into the top of your cheese in a diamond pattern.
  3. Sprinkle your minced garlic and your thyme over the top of your cheese. I've used both fresh and dry thyme, and both ways were great.
  4. Finally, drizzle some olive oil over the top. Don't really worry about measuring anything. Trust your instincts.
  5. Place your topped cheese in the oven and bake for about 20 minutes until it's oozing with awesomeness.
  6. Serve warm with crostini or crackers.
Notes
  1. If you want to make your own crostini to serve with this, simply slice a baguette into 1/2 inch slices and arrange them on a baking sheet. Spray or drizzle them with some olive oil. Pop them in the oven for about five minutes a side while your cheese is doing its thing. Just keep a watch over them until they're as golden as you like.
Adapted from What's Gaby Cooking
How to be Awesome on $20 a day http://awesomeon20.com/
Bacon-Wrapped Jalapeno Poppers | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

Bacon-Wrapped Jalapeno Poppers

Bacon-Wrapped Jalapeno Poppers | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

When you really love someone, you go out of your way to give them what they want. When you really love someone, you find little ways to show them you’re thinking about them. When you really love someone, you surprise them with cute paper straws and washi tape and let them go to Five Guys late at night after too many drinks because you know it’s their favorite thing in the entire world. When you really love someone you find a way to let them know.

I really love my amazing husband who does so many wonderful things for me, so the least I could do was make him one of his favorite foods, even if I had to jump through some ridiculous hoops to make this very American food in Scotland.

Bacon-Wrapped Jalapeno Poppers | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

Bacon-Wrapped Jalapeno Poppers are absolutely jaw dropping. They’re a bit time intensive, but super easy to make. It’s mainly construction. But trust me, everyone will love them. You should really make these for your next party. Or, you know, just for your husband because you love him so much.

If you’re outside the US, you may have a problem tracking down some of these ingredients. Ranch seasoning can be ordered through Amazon. So far, the only place around Glasgow I’ve been able to find jalapenos is at Whole Foods in Giffnock. This is definitely NOT near where I live, but I’ll do anything for love. As you can see, they’re a bit on the small side, but they were all eaten in about ten minutes, so I’m sure the flavor is fine. If anyone knows another source for jalapenos, definitely leave me a comment.

Bacon-Wrapped Jalapeno Poppers | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

Some people might not think you can say I love you with food. Those people would be wrong. Nothing says I love you like Bacon-Wrapped Jalapeno Poppers.

Bacon-Wrapped Jalapeno Poppers
Say I love you with Bacon-Wrapped Jalapeno Poppers.
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Ingredients
  1. 8 oz cream cheese, room temp
  2. 1 packet ranch dressing mix
  3. 1/2 cup shredded pepper jack or other spicy cheese
  4. 6-8 jalapenos
  5. 6-8 slices of bacon
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 375.
  2. Combine cream cheese, ranch dressing mix, and cheese in a mixing bowl. I used my stand mixer because I'm lazy, but you could mix it by hand.
  3. Cut the stem off of your jalepenos then slice them in half lengthwise. Remove the ribs and seeds. I use a spoon to scrape out the insides. Just make sure you wash your hands a lot. Arrange jalapeno halves on a foil lined baking sheet.
  4. Cut your bacon slices in half.
  5. Fill the cavity in each jalapeno half with the cream cheese mixture, then wrap a half piece of bacon around it and secure with a toothpick.
  6. Bake for 30 minutes or until your bacon has reached desired crispness.
  7. If you want them to be less greasy when you serve them, place them on a wire rack over foil to cool.
  8. These are good hot or at room temperature.
Notes
  1. You'll likely have some of the cream cheese mixture leftover, so if you want to a few extra, just increase your jalapenos and bacon accordingly.
Adapted from How to be Awesome on $20 a Day
How to be Awesome on $20 a day http://awesomeon20.com/
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