Did you know that St. Louis has the second largest Mardi Gras celebration in the country (behind New Orleans, of course)? The celebration is centered in a neighborhood called
Soulard, about a 1/2 mile from my house. St. Louis Mardi Gras runs for a few weeks before Fat Tuesday, and today was the dog parade, formerly known as the Mystic Krewe of Barkus. Thousands of people and dogs (including llamas, kangaroos, horses, and some less enthusiastic cats) descend upon Soulard on a Sunday afternoon to celebrate.
This year, I hosted a pre-party at my house for four and two legged friends. It was predicted to be a bit chilly, temps in the 30s, so I wanted to make sure to have some warm items. The drink menu included:
- Hot chocolate/coffee with whip cream, marshmallows, and some adult additives, such
as Bailey’s, Kahula, etc.
- Champagne with your choice of juices
- Bloody Mary fixings
- Hot apple cider
- Beer, soda, water
- Water for the pups
For food, I went with a brunchy/snacky feel, including:
- Cinnamon coffee cake
- Breakfast pizza (recipe below)
- Sausage pinwheels – recipe can be found here, I first discovered it when a colleague
brought it the office – you must try this
- Three Cheese Jalapeño spread (recipe below)
- Fresh fruit
- Chocolate chip cookies
- Nibbley items, including nuts, Hershey’s Kisses, and Goldfish Crackers
And for the dogs
- Mini Milk Bones
- “Hot Dog” Milk Bones
Three Cheese Jalapeño Spread
This recipe was created several years ago for a program that my firm conducted for Del Monte. It is a simple recipe, but classic and pleases everyone. You can spice it up if the crowd demands it or if you have lots of kids, you can keep it a little simpler.
8 ounces Cream cheese, softened
¼ cup Mayonnaise
2 cups Monterey Jack cheese, grated
1 cup Cheddar cheese, grated
½ cup Green onions, chopped
In a mixing bowl combine cream cheese and mayonnaise; stir in Monterey Jack and cheddar cheese, green onions, and tomatoes. Spread evenly in oven-proof baking dish. Can be served hot or cold. If served hot, preheat oven and bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes or until bubbly.
Pizza crust – home-made or refrigerated
2- 3 TBSP cream cheese, I’ve used plain, onion/chive, veggie
½ -1 cup of bacon or sausage, cooked
1 – 1 ½ cups of cheese, I prefer a Colby-Jack blend, pepper jack would be great as would cheddar
Roll the dough into a rectangle on a greased cookie sheet, poke with a fork and bake for about 12 minutes at 350. While the dough is baking, scramble the eggs – you want a soft scramble since they will cook further while baking.
Remove the crust from the oven and lightly spread the cream cheese on the warm crust, top with egg, making sure to cover the entire crust. Sprinkle with bacon or sausage and top with cheese. Return to the over for another 20 to 30 minutes, until lightly brown.
Serve warm, and with salsa if you choose.