In the Kitchen: Golden Beet & Goat Cheese Crostinis

(WTNH)– Food Writer/Columnist Jenn Press Arata from That’s SO Jenn shows us how to make golden foods like Golden Beet and Goat Cheese Crostinis.

August 27th is her brother Jeff’s golden birthday so she shows us how to celebrate a golden birthday with food.

Arata’s spaghetti stuffed meatball has been all over Buzzfeed and getting lots of press!

That’s SO Jenn, Confessions of a Foodie is packed with culinary content including original recipes with step-by-step photos, party planning tips, restaurant reviews, chef interviews, food product reviews, coverage of food related events and stories relating food to life. For more, go to www.thatssojenn.com.

That’s SO Jenn also runs as a monthly column for Hearst Corporation’s Darien News and New Canaan News online and in print.

Golden Beet and Goat Cheese Crostinis
Ingredients:

1 package Original New York Style Panetini oven baked Italian toast
1 (4 oz.) container spreadable goat cheese (I used Vermont Creamery)
Fig Balsamic Vinegar (can substitute for store-bought balsamic glaze)
About 1/2 cup chopped salted pistachios
About 1/2 cup cooked yellow beets, chopped

Instructions:

Spread goat cheese onto toasts. Top with pistachios and beets. Drizzle with fig balsamic. (Note: For a gluten-free option, substitute the spreadable cheese for goat cheese crumbles and serve salad-style without the crostini.)

Deviled Eggs
Ingredients:
6 hardboiled eggs sliced in half lengthwise (Trust me, you may want to double the recipe)
3-4 pimento stuffed green olives
1 1/2 tablespoons of mayonnaise (or more)
2/3 teaspoon (or less) yellow mustard
Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions:

Boil and peel eggs. Allow to cool. Remove pimentos to save for garnish. Finely chop olives. Slice eggs in half and remove yolks from whites. Place yolks in a bowl and store whites in a safe platter. Mash the yolks well and add salt and pepper. Stir in mayonnaise and yellow mustard.

When yolk mixture is well mashed, add chopped olives and fill the egg whites. For a modern twist on this dish, I nixed the traditional star-tipped piping bag and rolled the center into a ball for a tongue in cheek yolk presentation. Garnish with pimentos and serve.

Roasted Spaghetti Squash
Ingredients:
1 spaghetti squash
Nonstick cooking spray
About 1/4 cup olive oil
1 (2 lb) package Campari tomatoes
1/2 bulb of garlic
1/4 cup of capers
¼ cup toasted pine nuts
Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions:

Set your oven to convection roast (or preheat to 375°). Wash spaghetti squash well, make a small slit, and microwave for 5 minutes on each side to soften and make easier to cut.

Carefully slice in half, being careful to avoid steam burn. Coat a baking sheet with foil and spray with nonstick cooking spray. Place the squash halves face down and spray again. Roast in preheated oven for 30-40 minutes. Prepare your sauce by mincing garlic.

Rinse and chop tomatoes. Coat a large skillet with olive oil. Add garlic and sauté 1-2 minutes. Throw in tomatoes and capers. Season with salt and pepper and cook until tomatoes are bursting. Squash will be ready when it’s fork tender and golden brown. Scoop out the seeds and set aside. Use a fork to help pull apart the strands. Transfer the inside of the spaghetti squash to a large serving dish. Toss sauce with spaghetti squash.

Brie and Apricot Jam Fillo Cups
Ingredients:
2 (15 count) packages Athens mini fillo cups (found in freezer section)
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons apricot preserves
1 (5 oz.) container Alouette spreadable Creme de Brie

Instructions:
Preheat oven to 350° and line shells onto a baking sheet. Fill shells with one teaspoon of both brie and preserves. Bake for about 10 minutes until shells are crispy and cheese is warm.

Dulce de Leche Shortcakes

Ingredients:
Store-bought shortcakes
1 can sweetened condensed milk
1 ½ cups heavy cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup sugar

Instructions:
Remove the label from the sweetened condensed milk. Poke two holes through the top of the can, on opposite sides.

For dulce de leche: Fill a saucepan with water, exposing only 1/2 inch from the top of the can. To avoid a rattling sound (trust me, it will happen!), place a dish towel beneath the can.

Boil for 4 hours, continuing to refill the water as it begins to evaporate. After 4 hours, turn off the heat and carefully remove the can. Once it has cooled, open the top and like magic, dulce de leche!

For Whipped Cream: While your dulce de leche is on the stove, pour heavy cream into a stand mixer. Add vanilla and sugar. Whip until light and fluffy.

Spoon globs of homemade whipped cream into the center of your shortcakes, then top with an equal amount of dulce de leche.

Pineapple and Mango Skewers
Ingredients:
Pineapple
Mango
Vanilla yogurt
Honey
You will also need: Wooden Skewers
Instructions:
Cut mango and pineapple into equal pieces (get creative with cookie cutters!) and stack in alternating patterns on skewers. Drizzle honey over vanilla yogurt and serve as a dipping sauce.

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