Ridgecrest Recipe – Apple Meatballs

We always try a few new recipes out over the holidays for use in the new year and this one was a big hit.

Ingredients

  • 1 egg
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 1/4 cup crushed seasoned stuffing
  • 1 envelope onion soup mix
  • 2-1/2 pounds lean ground beef

SAUCE:

  • 2 bottles (18 ounces each) barbecue sauce
  • 1 jar (12 ounces) apple jelly
  • 1 can (8 ounces) tomato sauce

Directions

  • In a large bowl, combine the first four ingredients. Crumble beef over mixture and mix well. Shape into 1-in. balls.
  • In a large skillet, brown the meatballs; drain. Transfer to a greased 3-qt. baking dish. In a large saucepan, combine the sauce ingredients; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer for 10 minutes. Pour over meatballs.
  • Cover and bake at 325° for 30 minutes or until meat is no longer pink. Yield: 72 meatballs.

Use pretzel sticks instead of toothpicks for serving appetizer meatballs. They taste great and reduce waste and mess.

Herb Baked Chicken With Creamy Parmesan Polenta

Today’s recipe is another Ridgecrest favorite.  Hopefully after you try it out at home you will agree!

Herb Baked Chicken

8 pieces 6 oz. boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 c. Kraft Zesty Italian Dressing
1 c. Progresso Italian Bread Crumbs

Marinate chicken overnight in Zesty Italian Dressing.  Preheat oven to 350F.  Shake excess dressing from chicken and lightly coat with bread crumbs.  Bake chicken to internal temperature of 160F.  Serve with creamy Parmesan polenta.

Polenta

1 box instant polenta (8 oz. box)
1 t. salt
1 c. shredded Parmesan cheese

Follow package directions for polenta.  Add Parmesan cheese and salt.

Note:  You may need to add more water and/or salt to adjust for thickness and taste of polenta.

Island Grilled Chicken w/Mango Salsa

As I mentioned in last month’s recipe post (read here), I love it when Ridgecrest gets to host LifeWay’s trustees. Not only are they some great men and women to hang out with, we get to eat a lot of really great food!

Today’s recipe is another trustee favorite. This was the second year in a row that we have served this entree at the outdoor banquet at Camp Ridgecrest. This chicken (along with the orange ginger shrimp wraps) was a big hit. Hopefully after you try it out at home you will agree!

 

Island Grilled Chicken

  • 8 – 6oz boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • 2 cups Knorr Caribbean Jerk marinade and sauce
  • Marinate chicken breasts in 1 cup of marinade for 36-48 hours
  • Remove chicken from marinade and grill (high heat) for 1-2 minutes on each side
  • Preheat oven to 400F
  • Transfer chicken to a broiler pan and brush both sides with remaining cup of marinade
  • Bake in oven until done (internal temp of 160F)
  • Remove, top with cold mango salsa and serve

Mango Salsa (combine following ingredients and refrigerate 3-4 hours)

  • 2 cups pineapple chunks
  • 2 cups mango chunks
  • 1/2 cup chopped cilantro
  • 1/2 cup diced red onion
  • 1/2 cup lime juice
  • 1/4 cup diced jalapeno

Ridgecrest Recipes – Caramel Apple Cheesecake

I just attended the Blue Ridge Mountain Christian Writers Conference at Ridgecrest and for dessert at the closing banquet they served this cheesecake and believe me, you want to try this one at home.  People at the event loved it so much they were even taking the leftover pieces from other tables.  Please let us know what you think.

Ingredients
1-1/2 cups cinnamon graham cracker crumbs (about 8 whole crackers)
3/4 cup sugar, divided
1/4 cup butter, melted
1 package (14 ounces) caramels
2/3 cup evaporated milk
1/2 cup chopped pecans, divided
2 packages (8 ounces each) cream cheese, softened
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour, divided
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1-1/2 cups chopped peeled apples
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Directions

  • Place a greased 9-in. springform pan on a double thickness of heavy-duty foil (about 18 in. square). Securely wrap foil around pan.
  • In a small bowl, combine the cracker crumbs, 1/4 cup sugar and butter. Press onto the bottom and 1 in. up the sides of prepared pan. Place on a baking sheet. Bake at 350° for 10 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool on a wire rack.
  • In a heavy saucepan over medium-low heat, cook and stir caramels and milk until melted and smooth. Pour 1 cup over crust; sprinkle with 1/4 cup pecans. Set remaining caramel mixture aside.
  • In a large bowl, beat the cream cheese, 1 tablespoon flour and remaining sugar until smooth. Add eggs; beat on low speed just until combined. Combine the apples, cinnamon and remaining flour; fold into cream cheese mixture. Pour into crust.
  • Place springform pan in a large baking pan; add 1 in. of hot water to larger pan. Bake for 40 minutes. Reheat reserved caramel mixture if necessary; gently spoon over cheesecake. Sprinkle with remaining pecans.
  • Bake 10-15 minutes longer or until center is just set. Remove pan from water bath. Cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes. Carefully run a knife around edge of pan to loosen; cool 1 hour longer. Refrigerate overnight. Yield: 12 servings.

 

Ridgecrest Recipes – Rutland Chicken

When most people think of food service at Ridgecrest, they only think of the dining hall. This is not real surprising since that’s where the great majority of folks have their meals while on campus. And while the food in the dining hall is quite good, sometimes needing to serve 2,000 in 90 minutes prevents our food service team from showing off their more creative side.

This is where our catering department comes in. Unfortunately they are one of the best kept secrets at Ridgecrest. These guys do an awesome job with banquets, breaks, receptions and just about any other catering request a group may have and we want folks to get a taste of what they do.

So…this is the first of a new series of posts called “Ridgecrest Recipes”, in which we will highlight some of our most popular catering offerings. Of course we realize that most of you are not cooking for 50 or more friends so we’re giving you the home version. Hopefully making it easier for all of you to try them out.

Rutland Chicken

  • 8, 4-6 oz. boneless chicken breasts
  • 1 cup balsamic vinaigrette dressing
  • 1 pkg. Pioneer beef gravy mix (or make 2 cups of your own recipe)
  • orange juice
  • ½ cup heavy cream
  • ½ teaspoon nutmeg

 Marinate chicken in dressing for 4 hours.  Prepare beef gravy, substituting half the water with orange juice. Heat heavy cream with nutmeg, on low heat, until thickened, being careful not to scorch.   Char-grill chicken and top with orange-brown sauce.  Drizzle with white sauce and serve. Serves eight

Enjoy and then let us know what you think!