In no particular order...
Wild Mushroom and Goat Cheese Quesadillas are such a fantastic dish. These were seriously so tasty. I love pretty much anything containing mushrooms or goat cheese, and the cranberry-pecan salsa is a nice sweet contrast to the salty-earthy quesadillas. I bought The Pastry Queen Christmas just before the holidays, but I plan to use it throughout the year.
Ham and Cheddar Pretzel Bites. They are utterly addictive and quite frankly, the perfect snack food. As I said in the original post, I'm making them for New Year's Eve, and I'm going to freeze some to eat while we watch the Orange Bowl.
Creamy Chicken Lasagna is easily one of the most decadent dishes on my blog. I really can't say enough about it, so I'll just say you really should make this... when you have an extra 2000 calories to spare.
Risotto Marsala. The sweet Marsala wine pairs beautifully with the earthy mushrooms and creamy risotto. A quick, one pot meal that is a nice alternative to traditional Chicken Marsala.
Orange-Chipotle Glazed Pork Tenderloin. The sweet-spicy combo is delicious, and the glaze is to die for.
When we had a version of this fun and whimsical dessert at a restaurant in Greenville, I immediately knew I would have to try and recreate the Arnold Palmers at home. I used Dorie's rich, buttery, Lemon Tart, and I created a recipe for Firefly ice cream. A raspberry coulis rounded it out, and this is one of Joey's favorite desserts. I can't wait to make it again next summer.
Easily one of the most unexpected dishes I have made, Red Wine Spaghetti is one of those recipes where the sum is truly greater than its parts. Simple noodles boiled in red wine, then tossed with a simple sauce of oil, wine, walnuts, and Parmesan. But the result is something much more complex than you'd imagine.
I first made these Goat Cheese Bruschetta on a whim one Friday afternoon. While Joey preferred the more traditional tomato one, I was blown away by the combination of strawberries, goat cheese, and basil. I made them often after that, toasting a few slices of bread, and enjoying my new favorite snack. My mouth is seriously watering just thinking about them, and I can't wait for strawberries to be back in season so I can continue the obsession.
Oatmeal-Raisin Ice Cream is another unexpected hit. This was the first recipe I tried from Dave Lebovitz's The Perfect Scoop, but it certainly hasn't been the last. I love the combination of the cinnamon ice cream base, whiskey-soaked raisins, and the oatmeal praline. I finished off most of this on my own, and really, I'm not at all ashamed.
And last but not least, Chipotle and Cheddar Twice Baked Potatoes are such a fun twist on the classic. I served these with the Orange-Chipotle Pork Tenderloin above, and Joey fell in love with me all over again, haha. One of the reasons I'm including them in this list is that the possibilities are endless when it comes to fillings. There are endless variations just waiting to be created.
Well, that's it! My personal favorites of the year. I hope you've found something you enjoy on here, and I hope to continue sharing great recipes in 2010 and beyond!