"A corpse is meat gone bad. Well and what's cheese? Corpse of milk."
Hi Friends! Did you think I died? Yes, I've been away for a few weeks. Had a nice visiting trip to Florida with the Mister; was then exhausted from said trip and had trouble getting back into the groove (I know, I know - BOO HOO). Thanks for not abandoning me! I have a great recipe for you, and I mean GREAT! It was a hit with everyone that tasted it. No surprise though, who doesn't like ooey-gooey cheese? It's super-easy, is done in 15 minutes, and you are going to LOVE IT!
This gem was discovered at Justapinch.com last May. Posted there by Stefanie Wilson from Trenton GA, it is a knock-off of the popular Olive Garden appetizer. I changed a couple of things. The recipe says to serve it with 1/4 slices of Italian bread that have been crisped in the oven. You can do this if you like, but I made garlic bread by slicing ciabatta rolls in half, spreading them lightly with homemade garlic butter, and grilling them lightly in a medium-hot skillet (YUM). I also added fresh basil to the recipe and substituted it for the parsley garnish as well, and we all really loved it. Using fresh herbs is key as they come through brightly without overpowering the subtle smokiness of the cheese.
|My girl :-)|
Instead of serving it as an appetizer, I cut the recipe in half, spread it in four small ramekins and served it as part of a light meal with a chicken and broccoli slaw salad. Unorthodox, I know, but decidedly fantastic and surprisingly light. We'll be doing this again SOON. Like next week.
SMOKED MOZZARELLA FONDUTA
Added to Justapinch by Stefanie Wilson
1 pkg Italian bread, sliced into 1/4 slices
1 cup sour cream
1 teaspoon [fresh thyme], chopped
[1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped]
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
3 cups shredded smoked mozzarella or smoked provolone
3 cups shredded mozzarella (NOT smoked and not low-fat)
3 tablespoons grated Parmesan
3 tablespoons grated Romano (I used twice as much Parm, since I didn't have Romano)
1 small tomato, diced
[extra fresh basil, chopped]
NOTE: this recipe calls for one of the two main cheeses to be smoked and one to be regular.
1.Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Arrange sliced Italian bread flat on a baking sheet and cover with foil. Set aside.
2. Combine sour cream, thyme, basil, red pepper, cayenne pepper and cheeses in a large , bowl and blend thoroughly. If serving family style, spray an 8x10 inch casserole dish with Pam, then use a spatula to transfer the mixture. For individual servings, spray eight individual heat-resistant serving bowls, such as ramekins or custard cups with Pam and fill each with 1/2 cup of mixture. Spread cheese mixture to create an even surface.
3. Place individual bowls on a baking sheet. Place in oven at center position. After five minutes, place baking sheet, still covered, on top rack in oven. Bake for an additional 7 minutes. Remove bread and fonduta from oven, and garnish with diced tomatoes and basil. Arrange bread slices around bowl and serve immediately.