Friday Favs.

Friday, January 14, 2011
I got so many positive responses from my readers about my favorite kitchen things post. I thought why not make it a weekly feature. Friday Favs. This week, I'll share some of my favorite things to keep on hand for quickly feeding last minute guests.

I try to have pita chips. Specifically, Stacy's. My favorite is the simply naked, but the original is fantastic, too. If you have pita chips then you must have hummus. Yum. I try to keep a little tub in the fridge, unopened, for visitors. But, of course we eat it if it's about expire...or even if it's not.

I love having something sweet to go along with the salty chips. I love French Twists. I like them all but I'm particularly fond of the California Almond (blue box.) These are not too bad for you either and they keep well in my pantry. And they are yum. Especially with a hot cocoa.

Speaking of hot cocoa. My go to cocoa is always. Always. Ghirardelli. My fav. is the Chocolate Mocha. I like a little bitterness and darkness in my cocoa. But I always keep the double chocolate on hand for visitors. The way I make my cup? One cup of skim milk, one tablespoon of Nesquick powdered chocolate, and 2 tablespoons of the Ghirardelli Chocolate Mocha (it calls for 4 tbsp. but I find that's too rich and bitter for me. That's also why I never watch Dallas.) That is my perfect drink!

I keep a package of variety cold cuts in my freezer for visitors. Then, when I need to make them a yummy sandwich I can bake up some of these, that I always have in my freezer. They taste like homemade and are so easy! They take about 22 min. to bake, though, so make sure you give yourself a little time. I also use these for quick strawberry shortcake. Just split a hot biscuit, top it with sliced strawberries that have been macerating in a little sugar for a few minutes. Add some homemade whipped cream, if you have a carton in your fridge. If not, then this is the best canned whipped cream to have on hand. It lasts a long time in the fridge and is a bargain price at my favorite warehouse store.
For a main dish, I can whip up a batch of white bean chicken chili, in about 15 minutes. I always have white beans in my pantry, along with cans of green chilis, chicken broth, and of course cumin is in my spice cupboard. I can run to the market for a precooked roasted chicken. But, in a pinch, a good canned chicken works fine. The Costco brand is good.
Add those Pillsbury biscuits and you've got a nice, last minute meal. Just add a salad.

And for quick, decadent chocolate for me to have a daily, afternoon pick-me-up? I pop one little square of perfect chocolate in my mouth.

When you first open the package you may wonder how something so small will satisfy you with just one piece. But ohhhh, how they do the job! They last me a long time and they are necessary to perk up my mood any time! And you can share them with guests, if you want. You might just want to keep them hidden, though.


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