Crazy Indulgent Snacks: Vegan, gluten free, Paleo, healthy food is very on-trend. On the flip side of the healthy food is crave-able sweets and snacks that are wild in color and flavor. Oreo cookie bagels are the perfect example. A swirl of chocolate and vanilla dough smothered with Oreo cream cheese and stacked with extra Oreo cookies, just for good measure. It’s the breakfast-meets-dessert that is too crazy to pass up. Another new favorite is Pepperoni Pizza Waffles.
Pepperoni Pizza Waffles
1 Package Refrigerated Crescent Rolls
1 Cup Mozzarella Cheese
1/4 cup grated Parmesan
12 slices of pepperoni
1/2 cup marinara sauce
2 tbsp dried oregano
In a waffle maker, place crescent rolls across the waffle until completely covered with a thin layer. Spoon marinara sauce thinly across the crescent dough, followed by mozzarella, pepperoni, parmesan and a sprinkling of oregano. Cover with another layer of crescent dough, cover the waffle maker and cook until browned. Repeat with the rest of the dough.
Gourmet Sparkling Waters: Big soda companies are suffering, partially because people now know how unhealthy they are for us. Instead, sparkling water in all flavors are gaining in popularity, and the combinations are bold. From green apple, to blood orange, slim cans of grapefruit flavored soda and exotic ingredients like dragon fruit and pineapple, a DIY sparkling water bar is a delicious way to add a spark at your next gathering without added calories. I also love to start with non flavored sparkling and add my own infused simple syrup for added flair.
Rose and Orange Blossom Simple Syrup
1/4 cup water
1/4 cup fine sugar
1/4 cup rose water
1/4 cup orange blossom water
In a saucepan, add the water and sugar and bring to a simmer. Stir to ensure all the sugar is dissolved. Add the rose water and orange blossom water. Reduce by half until thick and syrupy. Place in a carafe and add to sparkling water.
Bold Flavors: Smoke and Fire are both bold flavors that are making their way to restaurants and home kitchens. Smoky chipotle is an easy flavor that adds depth and mild heat to any dish. My favorite new way to enjoy it is on grilled pork chops with a Chipotle and Brown sugar glaze.
Chipotle Brown Sugar Grilled Pork Chops
4 lbs of boneless pork chops, about 1 inch thick
1 cup brown sugar
12 dashes of Tabasco Chipotle sauce (more if you like it spicier)
1 tbsp salt
1 tbsp pepper
2 garlic cloves, chopped very fine
1/4 cup diced onion
1/4 cup chicken or beef broth
A couple dashes of Worcestershire sauce or soy sauce
In a saucepan, combine all the ingredients and place the heat on medium high. Stir and continue to cook until sugar is melted and bubbles. Reduce until a thick sauce forms. Remove from the heat and brush on pork chops. Grill chops on medium high, brushing with sauce every couple minutes. Cook for several minutes, flip and continue cooking for about 4-5 minutes or until meat is cooked through.
Exotic Fruits: From yellow watermelon, to purple sweet potatoes and even pink lemons, hybrid fruit is making its way to restaurants and even grocery stores across the country. Flavors are bolder, color is brighter and tastes are sweeter, so check them out!