By Marian Pierson


Ah, Saturdays in the fall. Whether you're on the 50-yard-line at Carter Finley Stadium in Raleigh, the nosebleed section of Keenan Memorial Stadium in Chapel Hill or your Durham living room sporting your favorite jersey, tailgating season is in full swing in the Triangle!


Carolina women love to cheer on their team next to bonfires, crunchy leaves and, of course, delicious food. It's the most important part, isn't it?


The game is great, but we all know that it just isn't the same without a koozie-wrapped beverage and a paper plate piled with snacks.


These easy-to-whip-up recipes are portable, so they're a breeze to pack in a cooler and serve to all your pals.


A word of advice: Keep your Wolfpack, Tar Heel and Blue Devil smack talk to a minimum. You may end up hosting a food fight rather than a tailgate party!



Market-Fresh Mixology
Cocktails for Every Season

Surrey Books









The Apple Cocktail
1 whole apple (select one with a flatter bottom)
Juice of 1 lemon wedge
1 apple wedge (cut in half)
1 ounce unsweetened apple juice
1 ounce limoncello
1/2 ounce vanilla vodka
Splash cranberry juice
1 cinnamon stick (for garnish)


Core the apple to about the halfway point. Be certain not to cut through the bottom. Use the lemon wedge to squeeze a small amount of lemon juice on inside of cored apple. Set aside.


In mixing glass, muddle apple wedge and unsweetened apple juice. Add limoncello, vanilla vodka and cranberry juice. Shake well. Strain into cored apple and serve with a small straw.


Garnish with a cinnamon stick.




Cozy Pomegranate Cider
2 cups apple cider
1 cup red wine
1/2 cup pomegranate juice
2 cinnamon sticks
10-15 whole cloves
4-5 pomegranate seeds (per cocktail, for garnish)
Rim ingredients
4 bar spoons super fine sugar
1/4 bar spoon cinnamon
Lime wedge


To rim the glass: On a small plate, measure sugar and cinnamon. Stir. Rim the outside top of mug with lime wedge. Roll the outside rim of mug in the sugar mixture. Set aside.


Add apple cider, wine, pomegranate juice, cinnamon sticks and cloves to a saucepan. Bring to a simmer on low heat. Strain hot cider through a sieve into sugar-rimmed mug.


Garnish by dropping pomegranate seeds in cider. Seeds will gently float to the bottom of the glass.



The Homesick Texan's Family Table

Lone Star Cooking From My Kitchen to Yours
Lisa Fain
Ten Speed Press









Spinach, Bacon and Artichoke Dip
1 (14-ounce) can artichoke hearts,
drained and chopped
10 slices bacon, cooked and chopped
1/2 teaspoon chipotle chile powder
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
2 cloves garlic, minced
8 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
1/4 cup mayonnaise
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
1 cup frozen chopped spinach, thawed and drained
1/2 cup (2 ounces) Cotija or feta cheese, crumbled
Salt and black pepper
1 cup (4 ounces) shredded Monterey Jack cheese
Tortilla chips, crackers or a sliced baguette, for serving


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.


In a 4-cup baking dish, stir together the artichoke hearts, bacon, chipotle chile powder, cumin, garlic, cream cheese, mayonnaise, lime juice, spinach and Cotija cheese until well combined. Adjust the seasonings and add salt and pepper to taste. Sprinkle the Monterey Jack on top of the dip.


Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until lightly browned and bubbling. Serve warm with tortilla chips, crackers or a sliced baguette.


Makes 8 servings




Jalapeño Pimento Cheese
4 pickled red jalapeño or Fresno chiles, stemmed, seeded and diced
2 pickled green jalapeño chiles stemmed, seeded and diced
3 cups (12 ounces) shredded sharp yellow cheddar cheese
1 tablespoon grated yellow onion
3/4 cup mayonnaise
2 teaspoons prepared yellow mustard
1 teaspoon chile pickle juice or vinegar
Celery sticks and crackers, for serving


Stir together the red chiles, green chiles, cheese, onion, mayonnaise, mustard and pickle juice until well combined, then season with salt to taste. Chill for 2 hours. Serve with celery sticks and crackers.


Makes 3 cups



Mexican Flavors

Contemporary Recipes From Camp San Miguel
Hugh Carpenter and Teri Sandison
Andrews McMeel









Fusion Empanadas
Pork filling
1/2 pound ground pork
2 whole green onions, minced
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro, leaves and tender stems
1 tablespoon Mexican Chile Sauce (recipe follows)
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 beaten egg
1/2 teaspoon salt
Cornstarch for dusting
20 to 24 (3 1/2-inch) round
wonton wrappers
3 tablespoons flavorless cooking oil
Zigzag Sauce (recipes follow) of your choice, for serving


To make the pork filling, combine the ground pork, green onions, cilantro, chile sauce, garlic, egg, and salt in a medium bowl. Using your hands, mix the ingredients until evenly blended. This can be made 24 hours in advance and kept refrigerated in an airtight container.


To wrap the empanadas, first prepare a small bowl of water. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and dust it with cornstarch. Place a round wonton wrapper on a flat surface. Add about 1 tablespoon of the pork filling, forming it lengthwise. Dip your fingers into the water and then gently moisten the wonton around the filling. Fold the wrapper over the filling, and pinch the outside edges to seal into a half-moon shape.


Place the empanadas on the baking sheet. This can be done 12 hours in advance; refrigerate the empanadas.


Prepare the Zigzag Sauce. Place in a resealable plastic bag and cut one corner off the bag.


To cook the empanadas, place a 12-inch nonstick sauté pan over high heat. Add the cooking oil. Add the empanadas. (They should all fit in the pan.)


Cook until brown on the bottom side, then turn over each empanada (use 2 spoons to do this) and brown on the other side. Add 1/4 cup water.


Cover the sauté pan tightly. Cook for about 20 seconds.


Remove the lid – the empanada skins should be transparent, and they are cooked when the filling feels firm when prodded with a finger. Boil away the remaining water. Slide the empanadas onto a serving platter.


Squeeze the Zigzag Sauce in a random zigzag pattern over the empanadas. Serve at once.


Makes 8 servings



— — Mexican Chile Sauce — —
1-1/2 ounces guajillo chiles, about 6
2 large vine-ripened tomatoes, 12 to 16 ounces
4 cloves garlic, peeled
1 Serrano chile
1/4 cup lightly packed light brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon dried oregano, or 2 teaspoons minced fresh oregano, preferably Mexican
1/2 teaspoon salt


Cut the stem ends off the guajillo chiles and shake out the seeds. Place the guajillos in a bowl and cover with boiling water. (Put a small plate on top of the chiles to submerge them.) Soak for 30 minutes, then drain, reserving 1 cup of the chile soaking water.


Cut the stems off the tomatoes and slice them in half horizontally. Place a dry cast-iron frying pan over medium-high heat. When hot, lightly brown the garlic, tomatoes and Serrano chile, 5 minutes.


Discard the tomato skins.


In a blender, add the guajillo chiles, garlic, tomato, Serrano, brown sugar, cumin, oregano, salt and the 1 cup reserved chile water. Blend until liquefied. Taste and adjust the seasonings. This will keep refrigerated for 3 months stored in an airtight container.


Makes 3 cups


— — Three Zigzag Sauces — —
Chipotle Chile Zigzag Sauce
1/2 cup crema, mayonnaise or sour cream
1 chipotle chile in adobo sauce, minced
1 clove garlic, minced
2 teaspoons finely grated lime zest
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lime juice
1/4 teaspoon salt


Combine all of the ingredients together in a small bowl or an electric mini-chop. Keep refrigerated in an airtight container and use within 1 week.


Makes 3/4 cup


Cilantro Zigzag Sauce
1/2 cup crema, mayonnaise or sour cream
1/2 cup fresh cilantro, leaves and tender stems
1 tablespoon finely minced fresh ginger
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lime juice
1/4 teaspoon salt


Combine all of the ingredients together in a small bowl or an electric mini-chop. Keep refrigerated in an airtight container and use within 1 week.


Makes 3/4 cup


Orange-Ginger Zigzag Sauce
1/2 cup crema, mayonnaise or sour cream
1 tablespoon Grand Marnier
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lime juice
2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
2 tablespoons chopped fresh mint leaves or cilantro leaves and tender stems
2 tablespoons minced fresh ginger
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 Serrano chile, minced, including the seeds
1/2 teaspoon finely grated orange zest
1/2 teaspoon salt


Combine all of the ingredients together in a small bowl or an electric mini-chop. Keep refrigerated in an airtight container and use within 1 week.


Makes 1 cup




Meatballs With Black Pepper, Serrano and Hot Sauce
1/2 pound ground beef, ground veal
or ground lamb
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 tablespoon Mexican hot sauce
(such as Cholula)
1 whole green onion, minced
1 clove garlic, finely minced
1 Serrano chile, minced, including the seeds
1 tablespoon chopped fresh oregano, preferably Mexican (or cilantro or mint)
1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup unseasoned bread crumbs
About 1/2 cup guacamole
1/4 cup crema


In a bowl, combine the beef with the egg, Worcestershire sauce, hot sauce, green onion, garlic, chile, oregano, ginger, pepper, cumin and salt.


Using your hands, mix well.


Place the bread crumbs on a plate. Lightly oil your hands with flavorless cooking oil or olive oil. Then form the meat into compact little meatballs, making 16. Coat on all sides with the bread crumbs. Transfer the meatballs to the baking pan. This can be done 24 hours in advance; refrigerate the meatballs in an airtight container.


Line a 9 by 13-inch pan with aluminum foil. Add the meatballs.


To cook the meatballs, preheat the oven to 400 degrees. When the oven has been preheated, turn the oven setting to broil. Place the baking pan in the oven 4 inches below the broiler. Cook the meatballs for 3 to 4 minutes; they should be lightly browned and feel slightly soft when prodded with a finger.


Transfer the meatballs to a serving plate. Add about a teaspoon of the guacamole on top of each meatball. Drizzle the meatballs with the crema and serve at once.


Makes 8 servings



Vegan for Fun
Modern Vegetarian Cuisine

Becker Joest Volk Verlag








Almond Walnut Triangles
1/2 cup walnuts
1/3-1/2 cup blanched, sliced almonds
3/4-1 cup raw cane sugar
1 dark chocolate bar


Coarsely chop the walnuts. Roast the sliced almonds in a dry non-stick skillet until golden brown and then remove from the skillet.


Pour the raw cane sugar into the skillet and allow it to caramelize. When the sugar melts, fold in the sliced almonds and walnuts, and immediately pour onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Spread the mixture out evenly using a wooden spoon and let it cool.


The mixture will cool quickly! When it is cool, use a serrated knife to cut into 6 triangles.


Melt the dark chocolate over a water bath. To do this, pour some water in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Turn the heat down to medium, put a metal bowl containing the chocolate on top of the saucepan, and allow the chocolate to melt. The metal bowl shouldn't come into contact with the water bath.


Dip half of each walnut triangle into the chocolate and then let cool on a baking rack or on a piece of baking paper.


Makes about 6 triangles



Attinello Pralines
10-1/2 ounces white vegan chocolate
3/4 cup blanched, chopped almonds
2-1/2 tablespoons white almond butter
1/4 cup coconut milk
1/2-1/3 cup unsweetened shredded coconut


Melt the white vegan chocolate over a hot water bath. To do this, bring some water to a boil in a saucepan. Put a metal bowl containing the chocolate on top of the saucepan, and allow the chocolate to melt. The metal bowl shouldn't come into contact with the water bath.


Add the almonds, almond butter and coconut milk to the white vegan chocolate and mix well with an electric hand mixer. Then put in the refrigerator for 15 minutes.


Use a teaspoon to dole out the praline mixture and roll into balls. Coat the pralines with the shredded coconut.


Makes about 36 pieces