Housewarming Party Spread

Hello again, friends.  I hope you all had a good weekend.  I’m hanging on the sofa, enjoying today’s chilly afternoon.  Dave has RedZone football on, and I’m still reeling from a wonderful party at our new house.  Yesterday, we *finally* threw our housewarming party after moving into our home in late May.  It’s been a journey and a lot of work getting the house together… buying some new furniture, painting a few of the rooms, hanging up pictures, etc.  It’s nice for everything to be coming together.  The housewarming party was a great success- lots of friends and family came to visit and we had a great time.  But, more importantly… the spread was fantastic.

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After lots of planning, stress, more planning and more stress- I landed on what I hoped to be enough food for the 60+ people we were expecting.  I wanted to share my party spread and the corresponding recipes with you, in the hopes of maybe making YOUR next open house party less stressful.

Our party was awesome, and the food was absolutely perfect.  There are a few tips I’d first like to give before diving into the yummy recipes I’m sharing.

  1. When you’re going to try and cater your own party, you can never have too much planning.  My first step of planning was for our menu.  I saved recipes with links to the original pages on an email draft, and added as I thought of more.  At the same time, I made my grocery list.  Every time I added a recipe, I would open it up and jot down the ingredients I’d need to buy for it.  I’ve found this to be SO helpful while I’m at the grocery store.
  2. For your menu, come up with a variety of options.  Finger foods are always ideal, less waste and clean up required.  A few hot items, a few cold items are nice… as well as a good combination of veggie-friendly and carnivore-friendly.
  3. Next, plan when you’re cooking EVERYTHING.  If there’s anything you can prep before hand, do it.  The less you have to do the day-of, the better.  Trust me.  Things get crazy and stressful and this will make your life so much easier.
  4. Double check your ingredients.  I had to go back to the store twice, after not remembering to save my onions, or buy extra limes.  Your prep will run smoothly if you check all of your ingredients before starting on your recipes!
  5. Map out your serving plan just as precisely as your recipe plan.  Know what serving utensils, dishes bowls, and space you’re going to use before making up your mind.
  6. Labels.  Label your food and drinks, please.  You wouldn’t want all your hard work to go to waste because someone doesn’t know what’s in the cheesy dip no one’s touched yet.  People feel more comfortable eating food when they have an idea of what it is… don’t you?
  7. Ask for help!  Grab your spouse, Mom, friend, anyone who offers to help you.  It’ll be nice to get to delegate some of the work, but also getting another opinion when you’re stuck with a last minute decision is clutch.

Now that you’re ready to plan… let me share my menu with you!

Before the madness

Before the madness

For our food spread, I wanted to go with most recipes I could make before the day of the party.  I’m a huge fan of dips, so I always have a few of those.  I also had a few cheese plates we got for our wedding that I wanted to show off, so I definitely wanted to do some fun cheeses.  Adding in a few other apps here and there, and Dave’s requested Chick Fil-A nugget platter, we came up with a great variety of food that was pretty much gone by the end of the night!  It was a huge success.

Soft Pretzels:  Being in Philly, I had to order our favorite soft pretzel tray from Philly Soft Pretzel Factory.  I like to get the full tray but only include salted pretzels and everything pretzels.  Yum.  Dave picked these up about an hour before the party started.

Cheese Plates with Crackers:  I ALWAYS try to buy my cheese from Trader Joe’s.  They have an awesome variety and great prices and if you’re not sure what to do, their staff is very helpful.  I went with a crunchy, aged sharp cheddar, a 1000-day aged Gouda, the always reliably delicious and creamy Saint Andre, a nutty Manchego, and a slightly stinky Blue Stilton.  We had a few accompaniments to go alongside the cheese and crackers- Fig Butter, Honey, Dried Cherries, and Truffle Marcona Almonds.  Nommm.

Caprese Skewers:  This is probably my new favorite entertaining snack.  It’s healthy, it’s easy, and everybody loves them.  These bad boys are simple… buy yourself some small wooden skewers, stack a grape tomato, basil leaf, and chunk of fresh mozzarella.  You can drizzle with balsamic or put a small dish in the center, like I did, for your guests to dip.  I recommend doing this day of so the tomatoes and cheese don’t dry out.

Tortellini Skewers w/ Pesto Dipping Sauce:  Another SUPER simple recipe.  I bought a huge serving of the pre-cooked tortellinis from BJ’s and cooked them up day of.  Throw two tortellini’s on each skewer and then again, either drizzle or offer a pesto dipping sauce.  I wanted to do this instead of a pasta salad, that people would probably serve themselves too much of.

Roasted Shrimp w/ Cocktail Sauce:  This was a great make-ahead snack.  Bought a giant bag of Extra-Large frozen raw, tail-on shrimp from BJ’s.  Shrimp can be expensive, so definitely try to get them in bulk!  I thawed the shrimp, then spread them in a foil-lined, pam-sprayed cookie sheet.  Then, I sprayed the shrimp with coconut oil spray (olive oil drizzle would be fine too!) salt and pepper.  Popped them in the oven at 400 for about 4-5 minutes on each side.  I put those in a tupperware until the day of, when I served with cocktail sauce.  Simple, yet these were the first snacks gone!

BBQ Salami:  Two Hebrew National Salamis- score and place in foil inside a baking dish.  Cover the salami with BBQ sauce.  Sweet Baby Ray’s is a family favorite (and gluten free!).  Bake in the oven for about 45 min or until the BBQ sauce starts getting all carmelizedy on the salami.  Cut or slice and pour any extra BBQ sauce ontop.  Serve with mustard, again, family preference is Nance’s Sharp and Creamy.  Another big hit.

In case you're like me and had no idea what kind of salami to buy :)

In case you’re like me and had no idea what kind of salami to buy 🙂

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Roasted Shrimp and Green Bean Salad

Roasted Shrimp and Green Bean Salad

Now, onto the Dips.

Caramelized Onion Dip w/ Wavy Chips:  Based off of Ina’s Pan Fried Onion Dip.  This was a new recipe to me and I’m pretty much obsessed.  This was the first thing I came to when people were leaving and it was my turn to eat.  YUM.

Recipe- 2 Large Sweet Onions, 4 T Butter, 1/4 cup Vegetable Oil, 1/4 tsp Cayenne, 1 tsp Kosher Salt, 1/2 tsp Black Pepper: Cut onions in half.  Make thin slices with the cut side-down (half moon shape).  Cook the onions for about 30-40 minutes with all other ingredients listed so far in a saucepan.  Put aside and let cool.  Meanwhile, in a mixer, combine 4oz Light Cream Cheese, 1/2 cup Fat Free Sour Cream, and 1/2 cup Olive Oil Mayo.  Once the onions are cool, add them to the mixture and combine.  I tried to remove the onions from the grease, and did not just dump them in together.  

Spinach Dip w/ Carrots and Celery:  A classic staple for us.  I make this all the time just to have for Dave and I to snack on during the week.

Recipe- One container fat free sour cream, 3/4-1 cup of Olive Oil Mayo.  Mix with one package of cooked chopped spinach (I drain mine using cheese cloth.  SO MUCH BETTER than paper towels, i promise it’s worth the small investment), one small can of diced water chestnuts, and one package of Lipton Vegetable soup (dry mix only).  Serve with raw vegg.

Buffalo Chicken Dip:  I never make this because everyone does, but it was a specific request from Dave… so of course I made it again.  Check out my fav recipe here on the blog, not too long ago.  I like to serve this with crackers or my favorite, Fritos Scoops.

Roasted Jalapeno & Honey Hummus:  Another repeat for the blog, but my favorite and really the only hummus in my life anymore.  It’s so good.  I used only 2 peppers, without seeds and it was pretty hot.  Not sure how I used 4 as I talked about in the original post, but go for it if you like heat.  I try to keep things on the less-spicy side for big parties.  Served this with Pita chips.

Cheese, Salad, Hummus, Buffalo Chicken Dip

Cheese, Salad, Hummus, Buffalo Chicken Dip

Spinach Dip and vegg

Spinach Dip and vegg

Time for the “main” dishes!  Not too heavy, I tried to still stay with finger food.

Chicken Nuggets:  I’d like to say this was for the kids we were expecting, but I’m pretty sure the adults devoured them just as much.  Saved myself some time and ordered the biggest party tray available at Chick Fil-A.  They’re the best.

Balsamic Roasted Veggies:  I like to have a healthy option and a good hearty veggie option since Rachel my sister-in-law is a vegetarian, I always try and remember that not everyone can eat meat!  During my prep day, I sliced two eggplants, a few lbs of zucchini, carrots, asparagus, and multi-colored bell peppers (keep those whole!) and threw them in the oven at 400, sprayed with some oil salt and pepper.  I roasted the veggies for about an hour, flipping every so often and turning the bell peppers.  For the bell peppers- you’ll want to get those nice and browning, then toss them in a paper bag.  Let them steam for about 10 minutes, then remove the skin and seeds once they are cool.  I placed all the veggies in a tupperware with balsamic vinegar poured overtop.  Served these room-temp day of.

Strawberry Salad w/ Lime Basil Vinaigrette:  You can make the dressing ahead, but definitely do the salad day-of.  I simplified the salad but used the dressing from this recipe.  Mixed greens, tossed with fresh strawberries, raw slivered almonds, and crumbled blue cheese worked great with this light dressing.  It looked like it wouldn’t be enough, but once I tossed the salad with the dressing, it somehow dressed the whole salad.  Don’t panic if you  make the dressing and it looks small!

Dressing- 1/4 cup Fresh Lime Juice, zest from the lime, 1/2 cup Olive Oil, 1 T Honey, 1/4 cup Fresh Basil, Salt, Pepper.  Blend in a blender or food processor.  

Italian Green Bean Salad:  This recipe is a favorite of my friend Erin’s family and was passed along to me for my party!  A great additional healthy option, and is perfect room temp.  I did make the salad day of and dressing during my prep day.

Recipe- 2lbs Fresh Green Beans, 1 pint Grape Tomatoes (cut in half), 3 T Balsamic Vinegar, 1 T Dijon Mustard, 1/2 tsp. Salt, 9 T olive oil, 1 large red onion (diced and soaked in cold water).  Drop beans in boiling water.  Cook for about 4 minutes, then drain and place into an ice water bath to stop the cooking.  Mix the dressing, then toss with the beans, tomatoes, and onions.  Serve room-temp.  

Raspberry Chipotle Meatballs:  Another staple for parties of mine.  Easy, sweet, spicy, love it.  I bought a 5lb bag of Turkey meatballs from BJ’s and doubled my original recipe I found years ago from Southern Living.  Made these during prep-day, then threw the cold balls into my crock pot a few hours before game-time.

Recipe- 2lbs meatballs, 1 28oz BBQ Sauce (again, Sweet Baby Ray’s for me), 1 15oz Jar Raspberry Preserves (I use All-Fruit brand!), 3 chipotle peppers + 1 Tablespoon of sauce from a small can of Chipotle Peppers in Adobo (found near mexican food in grocery store).  Mix everything but the balls in a large pot, add 1 1/2 cups water and whisk.  Add meatballs and cook until heated through or about 45 min.  Re-heat or place in a crockpot to keep warm.

Roasted Veggie platter

Roasted Veggie platter

Pretzels, Nuggets, Salami, and Meatballs

Pretzels, Nuggets, Salami, and Meatballs

Our desserts were completely provided by our fabulous Moms!  My Mom made a decadent chocolate pizza with marshmallows ontop, chocolate covered pretzels, and her famous “White Trash” (white chocolate rolled chex mix, peanuts, and M&Ms).  Dave’s Mom brought us her famous Magic Cookie Bars, Raspberry Bars, Lemon Bars, and my favorite fall-appropriate Pumpkin Bars.  My mouth is watering again!

Dessert Area

Dessert Area

No party would be complete without the libations!  We bought beer, and provided one mixed drink option and two sangrias.  For each of the mixed drinks, I doubled the recipe.  I’ve made the red before and am a huge fan, but the favorite by far was the seasonal Apple Pie Sangria.  I’ll be making that again!  These can be made before the day of, but if you add the fruit in before, take that out day of and replace with new fruit.

Also, with any of the drinks, I’d recommend leaving out the ice and having your guests put their own ice in their cups.  That way, the ice won’t melt and water down the drinks.

Red Sangria, a Bobby Flay Recipe:  I used Spanish Red Wine, and omitted the Blackberries, as they are not in season.
Recipe- 2 Bottles Table Red, 1 cup Apricot Brandy, 1/2 cup Triple Sec, 1/2 cup Raspberry Liquor, 1 cup Orange Juice, 1 cup Pomegranate Juice, 2/4 cup simple syrup, orange slices, apple slices, blackberries, one cinnamon stick.

Apple Pie Sangria:  Followed this one exactly.  The Caramel Vodka we bought was Smirnoff brand called “Kissed Caramel”.

Recipe- 2 Bottles Reisling, 5 cups Apple Cider, 2 cups Ginger Ale, 2 cups Caramel Vodka, 3 honey crisp apples, 3 pears, 2 cinnamon sticks

Maui Moscow Mule:  Vodka, Lime, Ginger Ale, Pimms #1, Mint, Fresh Ginger and Lime Slices.  I made this one too strong at first, so I recommend tasting before serving so you can get the mixture right!  Like the sangria, I had the Ginger and Lime slices as well as mint leaves floating on top.

A pretty picture of my kitchen, where I did all this hard work :)

A pretty picture of my kitchen, where I did all this hard work 🙂

I hope this can inspire you when you’re going to make your own party next!  If you were one of the lucky ones at my party, you’re welcome ESPECIALLY for the Apple Pie Sangria recipe and thank YOU for coming!

Watermelon & Feta Salad, SRC June

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Hi friends!

I can’t wait to share today’s recipe with you- it’s delicious, healthy, and full of juicy summer flavor.  I just love a watermelon salad!

The recipe today comes from another talented blogger, “The Tasty Gardener“, my pairing for this month’s Secret Recipe Club.  The Secret Recipe Club is a really cool group I joined a little while back.  Every month, we are assigned a new blogger.  We get to pick ANY recipe that blogger has written about and cook it up ourselves.  We can make adjustments according to our tastes too.  All of the bloggers post their results on the same day and we all get to see who had who and more importantly, what delicious dishes were made!

Watermelon & Feta Salad

Ingredients:

2 cups Spring Mix Lettuce

1 cup Watermelon, chopped into small chunks

1/4 cup Reduced Fat Feta Cheese, chopped or crumbled

2 slices Sweet Onion, chopped

1/4 Red Bell Pepper, chopped

Mint Leaves

Cilantro Leaves

Olives, Sunflower Seeds, Balsamic Vinegar, Salt & Pepper

Directions:

Place lettuce in a bowl or tupperware container.  Add chopped ingredients and top with mint and cilantro.  Add with other salad toppings such as sunflower seeds and olives and lightly sprinkle with salt and pepper.  Add 1-2 Tablespoons Balsamic Vinegar and ENJOY!

Recipe adapted from:  The Tasty Gardener

The original recipe was more like a side salad, but I wanted to turn that recipe into a lunch appropriate salad with fresh lettuce and more veggies.  The flavors are just fantastic and the juicy watermelon is such a nice addition to my lunchtime salad.  It gives not only a sweetness but a crunchy texture bursting with flavor.  I loved it!

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Now take a moment to check out these other fab recipes from this month’s SRC Reveal:

Summer Salad

Usually when I come home from work and working out, the last thing I feel like doing is making a fancy dinner.  If I put together a salad or some stir-fry… chances are that I won’t be writing about it on the blog.

With that being said, this “ordinary” weeknight dinner salad was just too pretty and too delicious to not brag about!

Summer Salad

Recipe by:  It’s Good to be the Cook
Makes 1 Serving @  5 WW Points
Ingredients:
1/4 Head Iceberg Lettuce, torn
1/4 Champagne Mango
1/4 Cucumber
1/4 Avocado
1 slice Bacon, cooked crisp
6 Grape Tomatoes
4 Green Beans
Green Onion, Sea Salt &  Black Pepper
1 teaspoon Sunflower Seeds
1/4 lb Cooked Shrimp
Strawberry Balsamic Vinegar
Directions:
1.  Chop all of the ingredients except the shrimp.  Mix in a large bowl with the iceberg lettuce.  Pull the tails off of the shrimp and top the mixed salad.
2.  Dress the salad with some chopped green onion, a sprinkle of sea salt, and a few grinds of black pepper.  Sprinkle w/ a teaspoon of Sunflower Seeds.  Drizzle w/ Strawberry (or plain) Balsamic Vinegar.

Loved this salad!  I am not a big fan of raw veggies, so my salads tend to rely on the heavier, less healthy items such as chicken, cheeses, croutons, nuts, etc.  This salad was the perfect combination of the “good” stuff & the “bad” stuff.  I don’t put oil on my salads when I use Vinegar, and trust me, you aren’t missing it.  The touch of salt and pepper enhances the flavors and makes everything delish!

As ginormous as this salad is, believe it or not, it only racks up FIVE Weight Watchers Points.  FIVE!  OMG!

Asian BBQ’ed Chicken & Grilled Romaine

I’m ready for summer!  That means its time to get out the scrubber and clean off the BBQ!

5-Ingredient Asian Marinade

for BBQ Chicken
Ingredients:
4 Shakes Hot Chili Sesame Oil
1 teaspoon Chili Garlic Sauce
2 teaspoons Sweet Chili Sauce
4 teaspoons Teriyaki Sauce
1 teaspoon Honey
Directions:
1.  Place 2 chicken breasts in a freezer bag.  Add all 5 sauce ingredients.  Zip up and mush the chicken around in the bag (with the bag closed!) until the sauce is mixed well.  Put in the refrigerator for an hour.  Flip the bag over once during that time.
2.  After it sits for a while, take the chicken out.  Fire up your barbie (cleaned and sprayed with Pam BEFORE lighting).  Place chicken on the grill over medium to medium high heat.  Depending on thickness, heat flipping once until it looks done.  If you aren’t sure, go ahead and take a piece off, cut it in the middle and make sure it’s no longer pink.  Put it back on if it’s not done.
3.  That’s ALL!!!

I’m not the best judge with checking to see if my chicken is done.  I’m so paranoid that I always end up taking it off too late when it’s all dried out.  This time around, I made sure to not over-cook it and it was perfect!  You can use this chart for some helpful tips!

Chicken marinating…

I was able to get some nice grill marks on there!

I served this sweet and spicy chicken over a really yummy salad… with GRILLED ROMAINE!  Have you ever had it before?  It’s so good!  It was so easy to do and I will absolutely be using this again, really soon!

Grilled Romaine

Ingredients:
2 heads Romaine, rinsed and patted dry
Olive Oil sprayer
Salt & Pepper
Directions:
1.  Slice the romaine in half, lengthwise with a large knife so you make it through the entire head, leaving the bottom white part in tact.  Pat dry and let sit for 5 minutes.  Spray with an oil sprayer, or carefully lightly drizzle olive oil on.  You really don’t want to use too much.  Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
2.  Fire up your Barbie!  You’ll only need medium-low heat for these babies so make sure it’s not too high.  Place the lettuce slice-side-down onto the grill.  Let the sit for 5 minutes before checking on them.  Once they are starting to get some grill marks, cook for another minute or two, then using tongs, take off of the grill.
3.  Cut off the white-ends of the lettuce, cut up and serve in a salad!

cut the romaine length-wise so the leaves stay together

finished product!

This was so delish!  You seriously won’t believe how easy it is and how much of a difference it will make to your salad.  Try it!!!

The rest of the stuff in this salad were some strawberries, dried currants, sunflower seeds, red bell pepper, celery, a hot cherry pepper and some blue cheese crumbles.  It all came together really well with the chicken and some Ken’s Light Asian Sesame.

yummy salad with both the romaine and the chicken

Beth’s Springtime Tuna Salad

Dave’s Mom, Robin, makes THE BEST tuna salad.  She also makes the best chicken salad- but I’ll have to get her to make us some of that another time.  This post is about TUNA.

The week before Dave moved into his apartment, we were eating dinner with his parents.  We were having such a nice time, until he makes the most irritating claim I’ve ever heard… “when I move out, I’m just going to eat salad with tuna and asian dressing… every night”.  My mouth dropped.  WHAT?!?!  You’re going to eat that EVERY.NIGHT?!?!

I had been so excited to have “my own” kitchen and make new recipes and fun dinners together… the anger burned up inside of me with this comment… “every night”.  Why would he want to eat the same thing every night?

You also should know that at this time, I hated “Asian” Dressing (Ken’s Light Asian Sesame) and also didn’t like Tuna Salad in my salad.  I had a fear of tomatoes, and despised olives… but you know that already :).  Needless to say, this was a nightmare!

It only took a month after Dave moved for him to have me a Tuna-In-My-Salad convert.  I convinced myself to like olives, and a few months later tomatoes.  He also had me addicted (and I still am) to his Asian Dressing.  MMM!  Now it’s up to me to get him to overcome his food fears (Ham, Shrimp, & Mushrooms).  I’m determined, but that’s for some other time.  Again… this is about TUNA!

As yummy as this recipe was, I will have to tell you that I would MUCH rather be eating tuna sashimi or the Spicy Tuna Sundae from Bluefin.  However, a few cans of tuna, some veggies, mayo, and some fresh dill was all I had and all I needed to make a delicious dinner (and what will also be a delicious lunch today!).

Beth’s Springtime Tuna Salad

Recipe adapted from:  Robin’s Tuna Salad
Makes:  6-8 Servings
Ingredients:
5 Cans Solid White Albacore Tuna, drained
2 large Carrots, peeled
5 stalks Celery, rinsed
1 Jalapeno, seeded
1 Tablespoon fresh Dill, chopped
1 Tablespoon Lemon Juice
1 Cup Olive Oil Mayo (or 1/2 cup mayo, 1/2 cup fat free Sour Cream)
Salt & Pepper
Directions:
1.  Chop Carrots, Celery & Jalapeno into very very small pieces.  Place the tuna in a large bowl and smash with a fork for a minute or two to separate the larger pieces.  Add the veggies.
2.  Add the Dill, Lemon Juice, and a shake of Sea Salt & a few grinds of Pepper.  Add mayo a little at a time, mixing to combine.  Add enough mayo until it reaches your desired consistency.  I don’t like mine to be too “mayo-ey”, so I try to only add as much as needed.
3.  Enjoy!  Divide into smaller containers to use  more than once.  We ate ours tonight over a nice big salad.  Tomorrow I will eat it with some Melba Snacks or Wheat Thins!

This batch was really yummy but definitely not as good as Robin’s!  

Robert Irvine would be disappointed in my inability to chop these veggies evenly... lol

Veggies ready to be mixed in

SBS Salad

“It’s a salad… only bigger… with lots of stuff in it”… Elaine Benes said it right when she made the “Big Salad” a hit back in the ’90’s.  In my house, “big salad” night is always quite the production.  Everyone is in the kitchen, rinsing, chopping, and even sometimes cooking to prepare their own version of the big salad.  You can always find bacon in my Dad’s, onion in my Mom’s, and blue cheese in mine.  We all have our favorites and this dinner is an easy one to personalize.  

If you didn’t catch these before, check out two of my favorite salads:  The Fajita Salad & the Mish-Mosh Salad.  We had just gone food shopping this week so our fresh ingredients were plentiful and this salad turned out beautiful!  I love when I manage to get so many colors in one bowl.  

I call this one (oh, and naming them for the blog makes the entire process so much more fun) the SBS Salad and boy was it delicious!!

SBS Salad (Strawberry, Blue, & Shrimp)

Recipe by:  It’s Good to be the Cook
Ingredients:
2 Cups Romaine, chopped
5 Shrimp, cooked, chilled, chopped
2 Tablespoons Blue Cheese Crumbles
3 Strawberries, washed & sliced
1/2 Carrot, shaved with a vegetable peeler
2 Tablespoons Purple Cabbage, sliced
1 Hot Cherry Pepper, seeded & sliced
1 Tablespoon Sliced & Roasted Almonds
5 Yellow Grape Tomatoes, sliced in half
5 Fat Free Croutons
2 Tablespoons Ken’s Light Asian Sesame (my FAV dressing)

I’m pretty sure that this salad is better than Elaine’s at Monk’s!  YUM!  

What’s your favorite “big salad” topping?  

Anthony’s Coal Fired Pizza

Dave and I often joke about how I want to move… anywhere.  Everywhere I visit, I come back saying “I could really live there”!  One city I don’t think I could ever live in is Chicago.  It’s not because of the wind, rain, and snow.  It’s not because their baseball team(s) suck, or how far it is away from the beach.  It’s because I could NEVER get used to eating their pizza!

I am a thin-crust pizza fan all the way.  I almost never get pizza unless I know it’s got a super thin or even cracker thin crust.  It’s just not worth it to me otherwise!  One of my new favorite pizza restaurants is Anthony’s Coal Fired Pizza inWayne.  Although the generic sports memorabilia on the walls gives it away, you can hardly tell this place is a chain.  It’s just that good.

Their pizza has a crispy thin crust and is served “well done” as the signs around the restaurant warn you.  Although I would kill for a pie from Anthony’s… their Italian Salad is what really gets me comin’ back.  This salad is served for two in a big wood bowl with tongs.  You can also order it with gorgonzola cheese which comes in a heaping pile ontop, just ready to be mixed in.  The Italian dressing is mixed in but very light.

I love the chick peas in the salad, and OBVIOUSLY the blue cheese!

Another favorite dish at Anthony’s is their wings.  Wings?  That’s surprising at a “fancy” pizza place… right?  Anthony’s wings are no ordinary wings.  They are not fried, but roasted in their Coal Oven, then smothered with a mound of caramelized onions.  They are not spicy or buffalo flavored, they are just simply seasoned to perfection.

Can you see the chicken wings hiding under this blob of caramelized onions? MMM

Finally, onto the star of the show… the pizza.  I’ve already marveled over the crust, let’s talk toppings.  The pie we ordered on this occasion was the Meatball & Ricotta pie.  Ricotta cheese on pizza is one of my favorite toppings to get, and the meatballs I’ve never tried!  They were delicious and a welcome addition to my repetiore of pizza toppings.  We also obviously had to order the Long Hot Italian Peppers on it too, because nothing is good if it’s not spicy, right Dave?

Our pizza tonight: Meatballs, Ricotta, and Long Hots

You should check out Anthony’s website and see if they have a location near you!  It’s awesome!