Double Take

Double Take: Easy Game Day Appetizers

Superbowl Snack Ideas

Game Day.  And this weekend, its the ultimate game day – the Super Bowl.  From the start of pre-game conferences and split-square bets, to cheering on your team, to half-time scandals and ranking new commercials, we all know what the real highlight of the day is…the food.  A marathon of food, to be exact.  Not everyone will wake up ready to bring their A-Game but we can guarantee that everybody brings their appetite to the Super Bowl. We’ve got two quick and simple recipes that are both large group friendly and delicious.  Everybody wins.

And in true team fashion, we made this post a DOUBLE TAKE.  We both set out with the idea of Super Bowl Snacks in mind, went our separate ways, and then shared what we came up with.  Hayley shared her mom’s perfect pepperoni bread recipe, and Katie altered her mom’s buffalo chicken recipe to make chicken vodka-parm dip.

PEPPERONI BREAD:

Easy Superbowl Snacks: Pepperoni Bread

This pepperoni bread is an appetizer that my mom has been making for all kinds of gatherings for as long as I can remember. It is sooooo good! And with only three ingredients, also really easy and affordable. Perfect combination for the Super Bowl.

three ingredient pepperoni roll

All you need is some frozen bread dough, pepperoni, and provolone cheese! I like to go with a plain white dough and some large sandwich pepperoni from the deli. Just keep in mind that your dough will need a good amount of time to thaw and rise – about two days in the refrigerator, so plan ahead!

assembling the pepperoni roll
Once your dough is thawed and soft, spray a large bowl with non-stick spray on place the ball of dough inside. Cover the bowl with a kitchen towel and let it sit out at room temperature until it doubles in size.

Preheat your oven to 375 degrees, then on to the assembly! First, roll the dough out into a large rectangle, about 1/4 inch thick. Then place an even layer of pepperoni, leaving an inch or so around the edges uncovered. Follow with a layer of provolone. Fold in the shorter edges, then roll up lengthwise and pinch the seam and the ends closed.
Simple pepperoni roll
Place the roll onto a parchment lined baking sheet, and poke a couple holes in the top so that steam can escape. If you would like, you can add an egg wash here to help make the top of your bread nicely golden brown and shiny, but if you’re short on time or eggs, don’t worry about skipping this part. Bake for 25-30 minutes, turning the pan half-way through.

It’s going to smell really really good at this point, but try to hold yourself back – it’s best to let your pepperoni roll rest for 10-15 minutes before cutting, or you’ll have a greasy mess!
Superbowl foods - quick and easy pepperoni bread
Slice that baby into thick pieces and serve warm!  If your timing isn’t spot on for your game day festivities, no worries! These are just as good (if not better) toasted back up in the oven for just a few minutes.

 CHICKEN VODKA-PARM DIP:

Superbowl Appetizer Dip Recipe

I wanted to make a dip recipe for game day, but knowing how popular Buff-Chick dip is nowadays, I tried to come up with something a little different.  This dip is inspired by one of my cousins’ favorite sandwiches that can be found at a local pizza shop.  The brother cousins are still fighting over ownership of the idea to replace the marinara sauce on a chicken parm sub with vodka sauce, but I’d guess the “invention” originated somewhere in the late 90s.

I took my mom’s famous buffalo chicken dip recipe, and replaced the ingredients to change the flavor. You’ll need a rotisserie chicken, vodka sauce, ricotta cheese, creamy garlic parmesan dressing (creamy caesar could also work), grated parmesan, and shredded mozzarella.

Chicken Vodka Sauce Ideas

Start by preheating your oven to 350 and shredding the rotisserie chicken breasts – I used my hands, its messy.  Mix the chicken with 1 and a half cups of vodka sauce, and sautee over low heat in a large skillet.  When things are starting to simmer, add a quarter cup of the creamy garlic dressing, and a quarter cup of the ricotta cheese, and stir.  Once everything looks well combined, remove from the heat, add one third cup grated parmesan cheese, mix, and pour into a baking dish.  Cover the top with the mozzarella, and bake covered in the oven for ten minutes, then uncover the dish and bake for another 10 or until the cheese is starting to brown.  Not many (any) process pictures for this dip because well, it’s just not too pretty when it’s being mixed together.  But rest assured.  Once those cocottes come out of the oven with the cheese all brown and bubbly, you won’t be able to resist.

Chicken Vodka Sauce Casserole

I think the dip tastes best when eaten.  But if you’re looking for some dipping options, I’d choose toasted bread – I used a seeded semolina loaf from a local italian bakery, and would love to try it with some crispy garlic tostadas.

This is not your average dip recipe.  It’s a creamy tomato garlic italian chicken cassarole overload.  I kid you not I made a test batch of the recipe and ate it with a spoon. By myself. At 7am.  New high, definitely – Chicken Vodka-Parm dip FTW!

Buffalo Chicken Dip Spin off Recipe

And just like the pepperoni bread, this recipe can be made a day or two before and baked off fresh before kickoff.  I’d actually recommend letting this one sit overnight in the refridgerator to let the flavors meld together

Double Take: Halloween Photo Booth

Halloween photo booth DIY

This year we will both be hosting Halloween parties…and on the same day! Naturally, we’ve been discussing our plans for the festivities, and how we could keep our friends entertained and in theme. We decided that the one thing almost everyone wants to do at a costume party is… take photos! You just have to document all those awesome get-ups, and with social media these days, you know those pictures are going to get shared all over! #Halloween. So being the crafty devils that we are, we thought we would each make a DIY “photo-booth” for our party goers!

We knew we would have drastically different interpretations of this idea, so it made the perfect subject for our October “Double-Take” feature! The two of us have always had very different styles when it comes to Halloween. One of us loves the scary stuff, the other one loves the cute! We’re betting you can probably guess who is who after checking out the final results.

Take One:

Halloween Photobooth Props

Katie made photo booth props so guests in costume can “dress up” like traditional halloween characters.

 

halloween photo booth props diy

I used colored foam sheets, long cardboard lolly-pop sticks, paint, glue dots, hot glue, scrap cardboard, and an x-acto knife. I started out by drawing a stencil of a mask on some scrap cardboard, and cut it out with an x-acto knife.  Using that as a template, I cut out different colors of foam for the main piece of the masks, and used glue dots to stick them together.  I painted the white lollypop sticks black, and fastened them to the masks using hot glue.  This was really simple, and really fun. I stuck with non-scary themed halloween characters…Frankenstein, a witch, cat ears, an owl, a pumpkin, and a skull (I also made a stencil for that one) – that’s how I do my halloween.  For a backdrop, I taped decorative sheets of card stock to our kitchen door, made and hung tissue paper-poofs on the side, and kept an old black frame near by as an added touch.  Can’t wait to see the pictures we take next week!

IMG_0125

Take Two:

Hayley made a blood-spattered backdrop and number placards so that party guests can take Halloween mugshots!

Halloween mug shot

I tend to go for a creepier Halloween aesthetic, full of spiders, blood, and skulls, so my interpretation of this project was just a little darker, but a lot of fun! I measured and painted lines onto a flat white sheet, then splattered it up with a generous amount of theatrical blood! For the ID signs, I cut a piece of black foam board into four rectangles and stenciled on some numbers and lettering in white paint. This “photo booth” will be great for group OR individual shots, and it documents the year and occasion right in the photo! All the different costumes will make for some interesting criminal mischief! Luckily I had a few hunky models around to help me test it out this week.

image

image
What are you doing for Halloween this year? Snap a picture of your costume or Halloween DIY and tag us @whattodowithlemons with the hashtag #WTDWLemons ! We would love to see what you’ve made!

Double Take: Coffee Cans

coffee can upcycle 

 

 

Today we are introducing a new series of posts called “Double Take”.  For these posts, we will select one item – a recipe, material, craft idea, anything – and come up with our own, individual projects involving that item, in secret.  There will be NO communication about the project between the two of us until we’re totally finished.  Then we will reconvene to write the post together!

While the two of us are great friends and get along amazingly (most of the time), we are TOTALLY different people.  You can see it in the topics we cover, and even in our writing styles – we have very different imaginations and thought processes, and we love that!  Our new “Double Take” feature will showcase our uniqueness, and give our readers double the DIY in one post!  Plus, because we’ll be highlighting the same item, we’ll really get to stretch our creative legs to come up with some cool final products.  There’s always more than one (great) way to look at something!

For our very first Double Take feature post, we decided to find a creative way to use an empty coffee can. We each started with one, and set out (separately) to remake it. It’s a classic upcycle, and we had a lot of fun keeping what we were working on a secret from each other, then coming together to write this post! Here’s what we did:

mosaic coffee can planterHayley’s coffee can became a flower pot, covered in a mosaic made from broken plates.

To make it: Punch some holes in the bottom of the can with a drill, to allow the plant adequate drainage. For the mosaic pieces, smash up some old plates with a hammer (wrapped in a towel to control the shrapnel!), or purchase some ready-made ones. Then adhere theses to the outside metal surface.

Note: I used a multipurpose glue called Weldbond to attach the pieces to the can and it worked just fine, but to be honest, if I did this project again, I would choose to use a thin-setting mortar instead. Weldbond is a great glue for mosaics, but it works better on a flat surface. On a curved surface, it makes the process take a bit longer, since for each “row” of pieces you glue down, you need to wait for the glue to dry a little before rotating the can, so that the pieces you just glued don’t go sliding off! A thin set mortar would take care of this issue.
mosaic how to Once the glue has had about 24 hours to dry, use some premixed grout to fill in between the pieces. All of the above mentioned materials can be found at your local hardware store, and you can follow the directions on the container for each! After the grout has dried (another 24 hours), clean up the surface of the tiles with a scrubby sponge and you will have a cute new flower pot!

burlap coffee can fabric flower cake stand

Katie’s coffee can became a cake stand, decorated in burlap and cloth fabric for a trendy, natural look.

I used a cardboard coffee can for this project, and started by removing the label and cleaning out the inside with a kitchen wipe.  Next, I cut strips of burlap garland in half and hot-glued three rows around the can.  You won’t need a lot of glue for this, as the burlap is light.  Also, take note that you will be able to see the glue through the burlap, so use small dots and place them strategically, like near the seams of the layers. I then made some fabric roses using a bright tea towel to add some more detail to the cake stand.  To make the roses, cut the towel into strips about 2-3 inches wide, and trim off the seams.  Fold one end of a strip into an angled triangle, and secure with hot-glue dots.  Next, roll the folded section around itself to form the center of the rose.

burlap and cloth flowers cake stand

When you get to the unfolded part, you’re going to start to form the petals.  To do this, fold/twist the fabric downwards towards the center of the flower and rotate at the same time.  It sounds tricky, and it is – but you can get the hang of it with practice.  Don’t forget to glue as you go!   I glued the roses on to the stand along the seams to hide those glue dots.  I also added a piece of corkboard that I had to the top of the can to give the stand a more finished look.  If you don’t have corkboard, don’t worry!  Most plates will nest into the top of the can easily, and won’t wobble.