Buttery Maple Bacon Popcorn Bites

Makes 3 dozen

Mix savory, crunchy bacon with sweet maple syrup for this tasty treat at your next event!

10 cups  popped popcorn
1/2 cup finely chopped crispy bacon
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup maple-flavored syrup
1/3 cup water
1 tbsp butter
1/4 cup smokehouse maple or hickory-smoked salt

Place popcorn and bacon in large bowl.  Mix sugar, syrup, and water in medium saucepan. Bring to a boil; cook 5 minutes or until very thick.
Stir in butter. Pour hot sugar mixture over popcorn, tossing quickly to evenly coat. Either wet hands with water (or lightly spray with cooking spray)
and form popcorn mixture into 1-1/2 inch balls, or place into desired serving dishes. Sprinkle with flavored salt and any additional bacon.
Store in an airtight container until ready to serve.

 

Picnics & Parties

Summer is a time to bring family, friends, and colleagues together and to share great food outside.

Let’s make this season something even more memorable than ever before!

A Cut Above Catering is here to help you or your business out in making sure your guests will be left merry and impressed by the end of the night.

We have several picnic menus to choose from.

 

Grilled Flank Steak w/ Chimichurri

  *As seen on Indy Style, June 9, 2015. Segment: Sunmer Themed Gatherings 

Serves 4
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 min

For the Steak:

  • 2 lbs of flank, skirt, or flat iron steak
  • 1/2 tbsp salt
  • 1 tsp granulated garlic
  • 1/2 tbsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 2 tsp chile powder
  • 2 tbsp olive oil (not extra virgin)

Mix all seasonings in a smal bowl. Preheat a charcoal or gas grill to approximately 400°F. Rub steak with olive oil, and then apply spice rub. Once grill is nice and hot, grill steak for 3-5 minutes on each side, until desired temperature. Tent with foil, and let rest for at least 15 minutes. 


For the Chimichurri

  • 1 cup fresh parsley (large handful)
  • 1/3 cup fresh cilantro (medium handful)
  • 2-3 stems of oregano leaves, stems removed
  • 3 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • 1/2 cup good extra virgin olive oil
  • Juice of one lime
  • 2-3 cloves of garlic
  • A Pinch of Salt
  • Black Pepper and Crushed Red Pepper to taste

In a food processor or blender, combine vinegar, lime juice, cilantro, parsley, oregano, garlic, salt and pepper. Pulse several times and then add the olive oil in a steady stream while the machine is running. This is even better made a couple of days ahead of time. Use it to marinate meats or as a basting or finishing sauce for chicken and fish. 

Fried Plantains (Tostones) with Cilantro Lime Creme

 *As seen on Indy Style, June 9th 2015. Segment: Themed Summer Gatherings

Prep Time: 5 min
Total Time: 15 min
Yield: 4-6 servings

For the Tostones:

  • 2-3 ripe green plantains (*note, they turn brown     when fully ripened. Look for plantains with nice even dark color, slightly soft, no “squishy” spots.)
  • 1 1/2 cups of canola oil (or enough to fill skillet 3/4 inch deep)
  • Sea Salt or Kosher Salt to taste

In a deep medium sized skillet, add oil and on medium to medium-high.

Meanwhile, slice both ends off of each plantain. With the tip of your knife, cut a straight line, lengthwise, through peel from top to bottom. Use your fingers to separate the peel from the flesh, working along the line you created. It’s okay if you score into the flesh of the plantain. It will live 😉

Cut each plantain into 3/4 inch slices. Make sure the oil in your pan is shimmering, before adding the sliced plantains. Cook the slices for about one minute on each side, until golden. Using tongs, transfer to a plate lined with paper towels. 

Next, locate any kind of smashing device somewhere in your kitchen. (Glasses, coffee mugs, and measuring cups are all good candidates). Just make sure it’s flat on the bottom and no larger than 3-4 inches in diameter. 

On a cutting board, stand your plantain pieces upright and smash them! If your plantain is sticking to the bottom, a little oil applied beforehand will help. You can also use a knife or spatula to remove those stubborn ones. 

Give them a second go-around in the hot oil for another few minutes on each side. They should be golden brown. Transfer to your paper-towel lined plate and sprinkle with salt to taste. 


For the Cilantro Lime Crema

  • 1 cup sour cream
  • Juice of 2 Limes
  • Zest of one lime
  • 1-2 garlic cloves
  • A small handful of fresh cilantro (about 1/3 cup)
  • Pinch of salt

In a food processor or blender, combine all ingredients until well blended. This can be made up to 2 days ahead of time. 

Pesto Tortellini Salad

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This hearty pasta salad is sure to be a hit wherever you bring it. We put it in individual jars for easy serving at picnics and tailgates. Glass containers will retain the cold from your cooler, and the basil and lemon make this dish so refreshing on a hot day!

1 LB tortellini
1 1/3 cups prepared pesto
1 red bell pepper, diced
1/2 red onion, diced
1/3 cup shredded carrot
2/3 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
Juice of one lemon

Cook the tortellini in salted boiling water for 5-7 minutes. Drain and toss with a bit of olive oil and let cool. Meanwhile, sauté the bell pepper and red onion for several minutes, allow to cool. In a bowl, combine the pesto with the juice of one lemon. Whisk while drizzling 2-3 more tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil. Add the tortellini, peppers, red onions, green onion, shredded carrot, and cherry tomato halves. Toss in the pesto. Refrigerate overnight. Serves 10-12.

Cherry Orange Chicken Salad

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Here’s a new take on a classic pot-luck chicken salad, perfect for picnics, out-door concerts, and tailgates! The dried cherries add a bit of tart sweetness and the pistachios are just the right amount of salty crunchy goodness to round out the dish. This is one of our new favorites!

1 LB chicken breast, roasted, diced
1 cup mayo
2/3 cup sour cream
1/3 cup dried cherries
1/3 cup green onion, sliced
1/3 cup celery, diced
1/3 cup shelled pistachios, chopped
1/3 cup mandarin oranges, drained & chopped
1/8 cup brown sugar
1 orange, zested and juiced

In a medium bowl, combine the celery, green onion, dried cherries, mandarin oranges, pistachios and chicken. In a separate bowl, make the dressing by whisking the sour cream, mayo, brown sugar, orange zest and juice. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Can be made up to three days ahead of time. Yields 8 servings.
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