Deionion Branch Dip

Deionion Branch Dip

Makes 3 cups.Why this recipe works:

A good roasted onion and bacon dip recipe starts with a good technique for roasting the onions. We developed a roasted onions recipe that met three criteria. To get a tender and moist interior, we roasted them cut side down on a pan rubbed with a small amount of oil. Halving the onions also gave us a pleasing presentation, with the onions reasonably intact. Finally, we wanted a good amount of surface caramelization in our roasted onions recipe. We noticed that during cooking the outer rings of the onions rose off the pan and so caramelized less than the inner rings. The remedy was to cut two small X’s at the top of each onion half; these slits allow steam to escape during cooking and helped to limit the tendency of the outer rings to lift up and off the pan.

With its fresh ingredients, this dip tastes like an uptown version of the old standby made with powdered onion soup mix. Serve with chips, pita bread slices, carrots sticks or just stick your fingers in when no one is looking.


Roasted Onions

  • 6 medium yellow onions halved crosswise, root and stem ends X’d twice (see illustration below)
  •  1 Tbsp. olive oil


  • 6 – 8 slices bacon, cooked crisp and drained, crumbled
  • 2 cups sour cream
  • 2 ¼ tsps. Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tsps. Dijon mustard
  • ½ tsps. celery seed
  • 3 Tbsps. chopped fresh chives
  • ½ tsps. table salt
  • Ground black pepper


1. Adjust oven rack to lowest position and heat oven to 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet or jelly roll pan with aluminum foil; rub foil with oil. Place onions cut side down on baking sheet. Roast until dark brown around bottom edge and tender when pierced with thin skewer or knife tip, about 30 minutes. Transfer pan to rack; let onions rest for 5 minutes before lifting off pan with metal spatula. Let onions cool then peel and chop fine.

2. Mix all ingredients (including onions) in medium bowl. Serve immediately or chill.

If you want spice it up with cayenne powder or some red pepper flakes

X’ing Onions

Cutting two small X’s near the end of the onion allows moisture to escape during cooking. This helps keep the rings level as they cook.

Original recipe is from Cooks illustrated 1997
Quick Grilled Rosemary Chicken and Sweet Potato

Quick Grilled Rosemary Chicken and Sweet Potato

Lyn is on a strict diet and I am on my own for meals but she made me promise to eat healthy and none of those bachelor meals eaten over the sink to save on plates. I feel I have done pretty well for the last two weeks. Only once did I go with a meal of prepackage frozen mac and cheese from Annie’s but it was organic and not bad. I think it is hard to cook for one, not sure about you but I tend to get more inventive no creative when I cook for someone else.  But on the other hand I am more willing to try something if I know that I will be the only one eating who cares if it was a failure, one learns from them.  I started with this grilled chicken, sweet potato and roasted cauliflower on the side. Ok I forgot to take a picture with the cauliflower you caught me.


  • 1 skinless chicken breast split
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 Tbsp. garlic rosemary oil (I had a lot of rosemary from the garden so infused some oil, 1 just rosemary and one with rosemary and garlic)
  • Some fresh chopped rosemary.
  • 1-Sweet potato and cauliflower


Rinse and dry the chicken very well

Salt and pepper rub with olive oil

Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 20-30 minutes.

Preheat the grill to high and clean off the grates

Grill trying only to turn once until done about 160 degree internally about 4-5 minutes per side.

Remove, cover and let sit for at least 10 minutes

Slice against the grain

See recipe for roasting vegetables.

Cook the sweet potato in the microwave so it is partially cooked then finish on the grill

Against the Grain

I not talking about rubbing someone the wrong way, I’m talking about the way to cut most meats so that they are tenderer a better chew if you will. We read it in cookbooks all the time: “Slice thinly against the grain.” But what does slicing against the grain really mean?

  • The grain is the most important characteristic: it is the direction which the muscle fibers are aligned, and properly identifying it can make the difference between tough and tender. Take a close look at your meat, and you’ll see that just like wood, it’s got a grain.
  • Grill marks are probably the lines most often confused with grain. Many a time, I’ve seen some start slicing meat at a 90° angle to the grill marks, rather than to the natural grain of the meat (which may or may not coincide with those grill marks).
  • Can’t see the grain well sometime if you bend the piece of meat you can see it or a thin slice on the end and then look at the cross section for the direction. I can’t tell you how many times I look at the grain precooking and then after I grill it is sometimes hard to tell.
Replacement Referees Recipes.

Replacement Referees Recipes.

I have been doing a series of game time recipes for a site that my son has a lot to do with patriots but I wanted to show my appreciation of the job that the Replacement Refs are doing by sharing some of their right on call for game time and halftime treats. One of my favorite lines I have heard so far is Oh Really they did not cover that at Footlocker orientation!

So in light of the brilliant job the Replacement Refs are doing I thought it only appropriate that we share some of their suggestions for during the game and halftime treats. You got to admit they could not miss calling the right snack at the right time. I have changed the name of the first of these into more appropriate football terminology and added my comments to others. I have to say after trying Scrapple the wait was worth …….. sorry I had to run, just made a touchdown of sorts.


Scramble, Fumble, Recovery Slow Cooked Stew (Scrapple)

As with preparing Sunday’s game plan this meal takes some time to make but the cheers of the crowd make up for it when you serve it up. You’ll score a real touch down with this halftime show.


  • 1 hog’s head
  • 4 to 5 quarts cold water
  • 4 teaspoons salt
  • 4 teaspoons powdered sage
  • yellow corn meal (about 3 cups)


Separate one hog’s head into halves. Remove eyes and brains. Scrape head and clean thoroughly. Place in large kettle and cover with 4-5 quarts of cold water. Simmer gently for 2 to 3 hours, or until meat falls from the bones. Skim grease carefully from the surface; remove meat. chop fine, and turn liquor ( Steve says I have no clue I think stir). Season with salt, pepper, and sage to taste. Sift in corn meal, stirring constantly, until the mixture is thickened to the consistency of mush. Cook slowly for 1 hour over low heat. When sufficiently cooked, pour into greased oblong pans and store in a cool place until ready to use. Cut in thin slices and fry until crisp and brown. Makes 6 pounds.

Server with a cup of nice cheddar coffee or a spam shake.

Spam Shake

Smooth delicious and full of protein


  • 1 can of Spam
  • 1 tin of anchovies
  • 2 12oz cans of beer
  • 4 oz tomato juice
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 cup chopped up parsley
  • 1/4 cup chopped scallions
  • dash of Tabasco
  • salt (if you’d need it), pepper to taste


Put it in blender and blend until smooth

Serve chilled with celery stick

Fried Hornworms on fried tomatoes

These lightly fried battered tomato slices topped off with a crunchy goodness will score big with your crowd.


  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 16 tomato hornworms
  • 4 medium green tomatoes, sliced into 1/4-inch rounds
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • White cornmeal


In a large skillet or wok, heat the oil. Then lightly fry the hornworms, about 4 minutes, taking care not to rupture the cuticles of each insect under high heat. Remove with a slotted spoon and set aside. Season tomato rounds with salt and pepper, then coat with cornmeal on both sides. In a large skillet, fry tomatoes until lightly browned on both sides. Top each round with 2 fried tomato hornworms. Garnish the paired hornworms with a single basil leaf.

More suggestions

During the game

  • Cheddar Coffee –A little razzle dazzle – When the coffee is gone, slurp down the glob of melted cheese. 
  • Sunflower Worcestershire Delight – a fall twist of a favorite baseball treat.
  • Banana Worm Bread – The smell alone makes the mouth….
  • Rocky Mountain OystersRound and crunchy a prairie treat
  • Progresso Lentil Soup with Chocolate Pudding – Are there words to describe that first taste?
  • Cricket Cookies –These are not just a night game treat



  • Pig’s Face and Cabbage – You had to do something with the rest after the footballs were made.
  • Clams Sundae – A typical Patriot’s press conference
  • Deer Poppers – 1, 2, 3 4,  I want some more…
  • Moose Nose Soup – It is Moose Nose Soup. First you need a moose nose and its tongue. Burn and scrape the hair off the nose on an open camp fire or use a blow torch. Cut the nose and tongue into cubes and boil for about an hour. Add onions if you wish. I enjoyed this soup, but people find it gross. Well you’re missing out.

Find more of these types of recipes at

Halftime White Turkey Chili

Halftime White Turkey Chili

Nothing better than the fall it brings sweatshirt weather and football, not to mention the trees start to put on a show of their own. I grew up in the music department at Norwood high and spent at 4 years at every football game marching, first with those high topped hats then in our Norwood blue blazers and white bucks, ahhh white bucks. My most favorite memory is the one parade where they stuck us behind the cows or horses, I had it better than most I played the trombone, was in the first row and could see it coming.

I also like squash soups, butternut being my favorite fall treat.

We love Wholefoods and found this recipe on their site for a chili with a different twist from the red Chili we all picture in our minds eye. It makes for perfect halftime eating on a crisp autumn day.

Go Pats!



  •  1 1/2 tablespoon olive oil, divided
  • 2 pounds ground turkey breast
  • 1 green bell pepper, cored, seeded and chopped
  • 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 tsp. ground coriander
  • 2 Tbsp. ground cumin
  • 1 tsp. dried oregano
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 can tomatillos, drained and chopped
  • 1 can diced green chiles, drained
  • 1 small jalapeño, seeded and finely sliced
  • 2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 3 cups cooked Great Northern beans, drained
  • Chopped cilantro, for garnish (optional)
  • 7 tsps. grated Monterey Jack cheese, for garnish (optional)
  • 7 tsps. sour cream, for garnish (optional)


Heat 1/2 tablespoon of the oil in a large pot over medium high heat. Add turkey and cook, stirring often, until browned. Transfer to a bowl and return pot to heat. Add remaining 1 tablespoon oil, bell pepper and onion and cook until softened and golden brown. Return turkey to pot and add coriander, cumin, oregano and salt. Stir well to combine. Add bay leaf, tomatillos, chiles, jalapeños and broth, reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, 45 to 50 minutes. Gently stir in beans and cook for 30 minutes more. Stir in cilantro, ladle chili into bowls and garnish with cheese and sourcream and Beer, if you like.


History of Chili

From International Chili Society

Perhaps it is the effect of Capisicum spices upon man’s mind; for, in the immortal words of Joe DeFrates, the only man ever to win the National and the World Chili Championships, “Chili powder makes you crazy.” That may say it all. To keep things straight, chile refers to the pepper pod, and chili to the concoction. The e and the i of it all.

The great debate, it seems, is not limited to whose chili is best. Even more heated is the argument over where the first bowl was made; and by whom. Estimates range from “somewhere west of Laramie,” in the early nineteenth century – being a product of a Texas trail drive – to a grisly tale of       enraged Aztecs, who cut up invading Spanish conquistadors, seasoned chunks of them with a passel of chile peppers, and ate them.   More

Pig Skins

Pig Skins

You can assemble these game day pig skins ahead of time, if you like. For daintier eaters try pop in your mouth bite-size pig skins, make this recipe with 12 small potatoes instead. Or for a twist, substitute smoked turkey or chicken for the pork, heck make them all and pig out.


  • 6 medium Yukon gold potatoes (about 2 1/2 lbs.)
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 large yellow onion, thinly sliced
  • A couple of green onions slice thin for garnish
  • Salt and black pepper to taste
  • 1 cup BBQ sauce (I used my Root beer BBQ sauce but you can use your own)
  • 3/4 cup sour cream
  • 1/4 cup salsa
  • 1 cup grated Monterey Jack
  • 1 1/2 cup shredded pulled pork (You can buy in store or make your own)


Preheat oven to 400°F. Prick potatoes all over with a fork then arrange on a baking sheet and bake until tender, 45 to 50 minutes. Set aside until cool enough to handle, then cut in half lengthwise and scoop out flesh, leaving only about 1/4 inch of potato all around. (Save potato flesh for another use.)

In the meantime, heat oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add onions, salt and pepper and cook, stirring often, until golden brown, about 10-15 minutes. Reduce heat to medium and cook until deep golden brown, 6 to 8 minutes more.

Preheat broiler. Divide half of the cheese among potato skins, then top with onions. Arrange pork on onions then top with remaining cheese. Broil until golden brown and bubbly, 2 to 3 minutes. Transfer potato skins to a platter and serve with BBQ sauce, sour cream, salsa on the side and what else BEER!

Go Pats!

Where did potato skins originate?

According to Yahoo Answers

Sorry to tell you, but they originated with TGI Fridays. But don’t worry, it wasn’t the original store in NYC. They were actually concocted by a hungry sous chef in the Atlanta store. The year was 1974.

I still think that Friday’s skins are the best. I was introduced to them in Cupertino, California around 1977, and every Friday night would go to the bar there for skins and beer (extra sour cream, please!). Got fatter than heck that summer.

Now that’s what Fridays would like you to believe is it true? Let’s hear from you?