Pimento Cheese & Pickles

snacktime

The perfect afternoon snack.

We throw Adobo into our Pimento Cheese to give it a je ne sais quoi that keeps everyone coming back for more. Combined with the spicy twang of homemade pickles this is a perfectly delightful treat to whip up for lunch, snacktime, or even as a last minute cocktail hour treat!

Find the recipe for pimento cheese here and for pickling spices go here.

Happy snacking!

XO

Charleston Spice Co.

Grilled Corn

Grilled Corn

If I could write a love song about corn I would.

Cream it, grill it, pan fry it, throw it in a stew.

No matter what you do, I’ll love it. And I might even love you.

It’s an epic sort of love, I posted about grilled corn last year and I’ll probably post about it next year too.

I mean, look at this beauty:

Grilled Corn

Talk about tasty. YUM.

We pulled back the husk, stripped out those little white hairs, rubbed on some olive oil, and then lovingly sprinkled Grill Seasoning on all the cobs. Then we wrapped them back into their husks and tied them with string to keep all that goodness inside:

Grilled Corn

 

Then we threw those puppies on the grill and let the magic happen.

Grilled Corn

*sigh* Isn’t summer marvelous?

Let’s stay this way forever,

XO

Charleston Spice Co.

Grilled Corn

Roasted Chickpeas

roasted chickpeas

Market season is here and for us that means salad season is about to kick into full swing.

After standing in the humid heat of sunny SC for hours eating isn’t always top on our list of things to do, but a nice big salad can work wonders to restore morale. With four markets a week we eat a lot of salads and are always looking for ways to keep things interesting.

Enter Roasted ChickpeasCrunchy and delightful, these are a fabulous salad topper and snack.

Here’s what you need:

3 cups chickpeas (I used dried prepared according to package instructions, but you can use canned as well)

2 Tablespoons olive oil

seasoning to taste

Preheat oven to 400 F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Coat chickpeas with olive oil and throw them onto your prepared baking sheet. Bake for 30-35 minutes. Take chickpeas out, add your seasoning of choice and bake another 10-15 minutes. As far as seasonings go, it’s up to you, this is your chance to get wild. I enjoy chickpeas roasted with our Hot Curry for salad topping and for snacking I like Cocoa Nib Rub.

Happy snacking and salad eating,

xo

Charleston Spice Co.

Artichoke and Avocado Spread

Artichoke and Avocado Spread

Inspired by a recent trip to one of our favorite wine and cheese shops, my mom and I decided to make some sort of artichoke spread.

When we first pulled out the artichoke hearts we were thinking something along the lines of olive oil, olives, and artichoke but then we saw half an avocado sitting all alone on the counter and we started moving in a whole new direction.

What we created was a beautiful combination of artichoke dip and guacamole. Perfect for an afternoon snack or cocktail hour.

Artichoke and Avocado Spread

Here’s what you need:

1 cup artichoke hearts, chopped

1/2 an avocado

2 ounces cream cheese

1 teaspoon Adobo

Hot pepper paste to taste (we used about 1 1/2 tablespoons of ají mirasol paste!)

Cheese for topping, optional

Mash avocado and cream cheese together until somewhat smooth and blended. Add in Adobo and chili paste. Stir in chopped artichoke hearts. Top with a light dusting of cheese and serve right away with bread or crackers!! We found that the spread was best on slightly toasted and crunchy bread!

Artichoke and Avocado Spread

Now you might be asking, what’s up with this ají mirasol stuff? And why does that knife say Braniff?

It’s all connected, my friend. As it happens my mom spent a large part of her younger years in Lima, Peru. Thus hot peppers and hints of Peruvian cuisine are part of her soul and flair in the kitchen and often find their way into last minute meal creations like this one.

But what about the knife?

Oh yes, when she and her family flew down to South America airlines like Braniff provided real silverware on flights, fancy huh? I’d like to think they stopped that practice on account of too many people taking these cute little knives with them and not because they may have presented a safety hazard.

Hope you’re having a great week!

-Charleston Spice Co.

Soft Pretzels

PretzelsI’m guilty.

I’ll admit it.

I don’t always follow recipes.

Sometimes I don’t even read them the whole way through, I just get so inspired and excited that I have to start making something and then I’m just flying by the seat of my pants.

To state the obvious, this method does not always result in success.

But this time, I took it slow, I read this recipe all the way through multiple times. There are plenty of recipes for soft pretzels out there but I chose this one because while the recipe looked like all the others, the pictures were lovely. I’m a sucker for pretty pictures, they don’t call it food porn for nothin’. Pretzel

Here’s what you’ll need:

1 1/2 cups warm water (110-115 F)

1 Tablespoon sugar

2 teaspoons flake sea salt

1 package of active dry yeast

4 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

4 Tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

Olive oil or vegetable oil

10 cups of water

2/3 cup baking soda

1 egg yolk beaten with 1 Tablespoon water

Salt to sprinkle on top of the pretzels (I tried lots of different combinations of salt, Celery Salt, Black Truffle Sea Salt, and Flake Salt with Bali Pyramid)

In the bowl of your mixer combine water, sugar, and salt. Add the yeast and let it sit for five minutes or until it begins to foam.

Add the flour and butter. Using the hook attachment mix on low until everything is combined. Then kick it up a notch and knead the dough on medium until it is smooth and pulls away from the bowl, 4 to 5 mins.

Get yourself a clean bowl and grease it with oil, I used olive oil. Take the dough and plop it into your greased bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and set in a warm place for an hour or until the dough doubles in size!

Preheat the oven to 450F and place the racks in the middle positions.

Line two baking sheets with lightly oiled parchment paper.

And this is the point when I really didn’t follow that recipe I told you about. I wanted to make heart shaped pretzels, tis the season for that sort of falderal. Roll that dough out however suits your fancy. Don’t flour your work surface, just use your palms to roll the dough from the center out into ropes.

Once you have your pretzel twists or twisted hearts or letters, combine the 10 cups of water and the baking soda in an 8 quart pot and bring to a boil. Once boiling, drop the pretzels in one at a time for 30 seconds, remove with a slotted spoon or spatula. Place on your baking sheets. Paint pretzels with the yolk and water combo and sprinkle with your choice of salt or spice blend!!

Bake the pretzels for 12 to 14 minutes, rotating pans and switching top and bottom pans. The pretzels should be a lovely golden brown color

The final step is to enjoy!!!!

Pretzel