Orange Champagne Cocktail

This past Saturday I hosted a game-day/watch party for the LSU game. I selected the Orange Champagne cocktail drink for the crowd and it was a HIT; especially for a Day game!

Orange champagne cocktail, RRR 4, pg 97

Ingredients:

  • 2 quarts Champagne, chilled
  • 2 quarts ginger ale, chilled
  • 1 quart of orange juice, chilled
  • 2 pints of fresh strawberries
  • Instructions:
    • Combine the champagne, ginger ale, and orange juice in a large pitcher and mix well. Pour into champagne flutes and top each serving with some of the sliced strawberries.
      Makes 15 (4 oz) servings

    Here are some photos of the drinks! They were so good and great for a party! I served with a platter of strawberries out for guests to add to their drinks.

    The Perfect Tailgate

    With LSU football season coming up, I thought a tailgate post would be perfect! I have selected three items that would be great to bring to a tailgate! Geaux tigers!


    Bill’s Fuzzy “Neighbors”

    Ingredients:

    • 6 ounces of orange juice concentrate
    • 7 ounces peach schnapps
    • One blender of crushed ice

    Instructions:

  • Whirl all ingredients together in a blender and serve!
  • This made such a great drink! So tasty! I would double or triple this recipe for a larger party.


    Artichoke Dip

    Ingredients:

    • One 15 oz can of Progresso seasoned bread crumbs
    • 4 14 oz cans of artichoke hearts
    • 2 cups olive oil
    • Juice of 4 lemons (Realemon May be used)
    • 2 cups of grated Romano cheese
    • 4 pods of garlic, puréed
    • Red pepper to taste
  • Instructions:
  • Combine the bread crumbs, water from artichokes, lemon juice and olive oil. Put the artichokes hearts in the blender and blend on high speed until well blended. Add artichoke hearts to above mixture. Add cheese, garlic and red pepper. Put in a buttered 4 quart casserole and bake at 350 degrees 20 to 30 minutes until warm. This may be spooned into a chafing dish and served with Melba rounds. Delicious!
  • Yield: 4 quarts
  • This makes a TON of dip- I had two full pans of dip! This would be great for a larger party!


    Lastly, I selected On the Border Meatballs

    Ingredients:

    • 1 1/2 pounds of round, well-trimmed and ground beef
    • 1 1/2 cups bread crumbs
    • 1/3 cup minced onion
    • 1/3 cup of skim/low fat milk
    • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
    • 3 tablespoons chopped parsley
    • 1 teaspoon pepper
    • 2 egg whites of 1/4 cup of egg substitute
    • 1 tablespoon corn oil
    • 12 ounces light Velveeta cheese
    • One 4 ounce can green chilies, reserve liquid
    • One 1 1/2 ounce package of taco seasoning mix
    • 1 cup of water

    Instructions:

    • In a bowl, mix the ground meat, bread crumbs, onion, milk, garlic powder, parsley, pepper and egg. Shape into 1 inch meatballs and cook in a nonstick skillet in oil until browned. Set the meatballs aside to drain on paper towels. Spoon off the fat and wipe the skillet clean. In the same skillet over low heat, mix the cheese, green Chile’s with liquid, taco seasoning mix and one cup of water until cheese melts. Return the meatballs to the skillet. Cover and simmer until heated through. Serve hot with toothpicks. The sauce can be used as a dip when the meatballs are gone.
    • Yield: 112 meatballs


    Festive Orzo Salad

    Even though the summer may be wrapping up and tailgate season is kicking off, the temperature in South Louisiana is still sweltering in the 90 degree range.  For us, tailgating is considered a time honored tradition —  we love spending our Saturdays with friends and family under the Oaks, waiting for the band from Tigerland to come marching down the hill!

    On any given Saturday during football season, you will find a menagerie of food being cooked on the parade grounds at LSU — anything from jambalaya, crawfish étouffeé, fried catfish, boudin balls, to gumbo.  As football season wears on, it’s always difficult to know what to take to a tailgate. You don’t want to break the bank in the process of feeding the masses, yet you want to be able to bring something that is not the “same ole, same ole.”  The Festive Orzo Salad in River Road Recipes IV: Warm Welcomes, is a nice addition to this year’s tailgate menu!  You can also add grilled chicken breasts or shrimp to make it a hearty entrée!

    Photo by Jessica McVea.

    Photo by Jessica McVea.

    Festive Orzo Salad, RRR IV, p. 243
    Balsamic Vinaigrette
    • 3/4 cup light olive oil
    • 1/4 cup red balsamic vinegar
    • 1 tablespoon yellow mustard
    • 3/4 teaspoon sugar

    Salad

    • 1 bunch asparagus spears
    • 16 ounces orzo
    • 1 (14-ounce) can artichoke hearts, drained and chopped
    • 1 (2-ounce) can black olives, drained
    • 1 small red bell pepper, coarsely chopped
    • 1 small yellow bell pepper, coarsely chopped
    • 1/4 to 1/2 purple onion, chopped
    • 1/2 (8-ounce) jar sun-dried tomatoes, drained and chopped
    • 8 ounces feta cheese, crumbled
    • 10 fresh basil leaves, coarsely chopped
    Photo by Jessica McVea.

    Photo by Jessica McVea.

    For the vinaigrette, combine the olive oil, vinegar, mustard, and sugar in a jar with a tight-fitting lid and seal tightly.  Shake to blend.

    For the salad, snap off the woody ends of the asparagus spears.  Steam until tender-crisp; drain.  Cut each spear into 4 or 5 portions.  Cook the pasta using the package directions; drain.

    Combine the pasta, artichokes, olives, bell peppers, onion and sun-dried tomatoes in a bowl and mix well.  Add the vinaigrette and toss to coat.  Add the asparagus, cheese and basil and mix gently.  Marinate, covered, in the refrigerator for 2 to 10 hours. Let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes before serving.

    Photo by Jessica McVea.

    Photo by Jessica McVea.