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Sunday, March 17, 2013

Use It Or Lose It - St. Patty's Dogs and Cake Balls

Hello friends!
It's time again for "Use It or Lose It!", every Sunday I clean out my fridge and create dishes from the items I need to use soon, or else I have to throw them away.

Today's leftovers are:

1/2 head of cabbage (had it for like....a month lol...)
Almost 1 can of tomatoes (I just needed a little for something small)
1/2 cup of thin cheese sauce (There was too much sauce when I made some au gratin potatoes)
1/2 cup au gratin potatoes (Those last few bites you just can't finish...)
A bag of red velvet cake edge trimmings from 2 9x13 cakes (from the big cake)
1 cup of blue frosting (daboodee, daboodai)

My first thought for the cabbage was Okonomiyaki (Japanese pancake) topped with cheese sauce, but then someone posted a picture of a gourmet hot dog to my Twitter feed and I couldn't get hot dogs out of my head.
I really didn't plan for these to be St. Patrick's Day fitting, but they were! I ended up whipping up some homemade buns and topping beer-cooked hot dogs with cabbage relish and cheesy-potato sauce. Here's how:

Cabbage Relish
1/2 head of cabbage
1 can of shredded tomatoes, undrained
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
1 tsp salt
1 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp black pepper
1/4 tsp oregano
1/4 tsp steak seasoning

Combine ingredients in a pot and simmer stirring occasionally until most of the liquid boils off, about 30 minutes.

Cheesy Potato Sauce
1/2 cup cheese sauce
1/2 cup leftover cooked potatoes

...Basically, I blended it with a hand mixer and heated it in the microwave. Mine didn't need extra seasoning, but as always, season to taste.

Cook a pack of hot dogs in a skillet with about 1/2 inch of beer and 1-2 tsp oil until beer cooks off and dogs brown and start to blister. Top with relish and sauce and enjoy!

.....And now, the cake balls!
Remember that red velvet cake we made the other day? Well, I had some edges and icing left over:
I wasn't sure what color these would end up, considering I'm mixing red cake with blue frosting.

Cake balls are easy and fun!

I microwaved and crumbled my leftover cake and ended up with about 2 cups of crumbs. Then, I combined the warm crumbs with the 1 cup of frosting. This mixture should be easy to form into balls with your hands.
Prepare a baking sheet with wax paper. Form balls (I got 14) and place on sheet.

Seasoned cookie bakers can relax.  As I was placing these beauties, my natural instincts said "Don't put them too close together! They all have to be the same size!" ...But these aren't going into the oven, they're going into the freezer for 30-45 minutes, so size and proximity don't matter nearly as much. :)

I used about 10 oz of white vanilla-flavored candy coating. I melted it in a metal bowl placed in a pan of water; you can use a double boiler or microwave per package directions. Using a rubber spatula, I rolled each ball around in the melted coating, then placed back on the cookie sheet and sprinkled with red sugar.
TIP: If your melted chocolate gets overly thick or chunky, add a little Crisco. 

Cake balls!