Ranch chicken firecrackers

Out of desperation comes one of my favorite new snacks! Isn’t that often the way?

My friend Traci made me some firecrackers (fire crackers? Two words?) last summer and was kind enough to scribble down the recipe for me. I made some more of them last week but was trying to talk myself into something more substantial than crackers for lunch, when it occurred to me I had a cold roasted chicken in the fridge. Enter inspiration.

I shredded the chicken, tossed it in some ranch dressing, and put that on top of the firecrackers. It’s spicy with the peppers and cool with the ranch chicken, and oh so tasty!

Ranch chicken firecrackers

Ingredients

  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 package dry ranch seasoning
  • 1 tsp. onion powder
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • 3-4 Tbsp. crushed red pepper, depending on your spice preference
  • 3 sleeves saltine crackers
  • Cold, cooked, shredded chicken
  • Enough bottled ranch dressing to lightly coat chicken (these last two depend on how much you want to make, obviously)

Instructions

  1. Add oil, seasoning, spices, and crushed pepper into a one-gallon zip top bag; seal the top and mush it all around till everything is well combined
  2. Add in the crackers and shake them around a little to coat them with the oil and spice mixture
  3. Let it all sit in the bag for a good 12 hours or so, flipping the bag over any time you think of it, till all the mixture is absorbed into the crackers
  4. Once those are ready, just shred some cooked chicken with a fork (leftovers are your friend, here), toss it in as much ranch as you like, and put that on top of your firecrackers. So good!
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Slow cooker pulled pork BBQ

Y’all will not believe how easy this was! The fact that it cooks in the slow cooker is such a bonus, too, because what’s better than coming home to supper already done?

Slow cooker pulled pork BBQ

Ingredients

  • A pork roast
  • Water
  • Salt, plus onion powder, rib rub, or whatever spices sound good
  • BBQ sauce
  • Buns

Instructions

  1. Put pork roast in a slow cooker and sprinkle on salt and whatever spices your little heart desires; I did onion powder and a rib rub Yankee had in the cabinet. Add enough hot water to fully cover the roast and turn the slow cooker on low; ignore it for the next 8-12 hours or so, depending on size
  2. After it’s cooked through remove meat to a cutting board and chop it up, discarding fat and any bone; pour the water out of the slow cooker (pork broth! Feel free to freeze it for later use)
  3. Serve! Either on a plate or on a bun, topped with your favorite BBQ sauce

Notes

Some folks return the chopped meat to the slow cooker and add in BBQ sauce so they can cook together for a bit; I don’t because I find that cooking the BBQ sauce down makes it too sugary

How easy was that? This is great with green beans!

Guacamole

On a trip to Hilton Head Island the Yankee and I discovered this dish: guacamole topped with crab meat. This is a win. I set out to recreate it as soon as we got home, and I’m pretty pleased with the result! This is a huge party hit, too; I highly recommend.

Guacamole

Ingredients

  • Two ripe avocados
  • Two Roma tomatoes, seeded and diced
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, minced
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 cayenne pepper
  • Kosher salt to taste, but about 1/2 tsp.
  • Juice from one lime
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/2 medium onion, diced (or some onion powder if you hate the crunch of raw onion)
  • Eight ounces lump crab meat, drained
  • Chips (obviously)

Instructions

  1. Scoop out the avocado into a bowl and mash with a fork
  2. Stir in tomatoes, pepper, cumin, pepper, salt and lime juice, plus onion if you’re using it
  3. Top with crab meat and serve with chips

Say hello to my little friend

I’d like you to meet my BFF in the spice cabinet: Miracle Blend.

Why do they call it that? Well, because it is indeed a miracle. For reals. It is the fastest, easiest way to transform anything with a single spice (that makes it sound a little bit like Superman). I use it on:

  • corn
  • pasta salad
  • croutons
  • salad
  • green beans
  • broccoli
  • cauliflower
  • chicken
  • steak
  • popcorn
  • potatoes

The list could go on and on, but you get the idea.

Mine is in that cute little shaker because I buy it by the pound. It’s that good. I’ve actually been to their little place in Michigan (on a trip to see The Yankee’s family) and it’s ADORABLE. And they let The Kiddo eat a ridiculous amount of their crackers, which he actually liked (that’s another miracle).

So get some! Go now! The Yankee loves their Char Broil It for steaks, and I love the Lemon Pepper on chicken. But the Miracle Blend, people. Can’t live without it.