July 29-Aug 4, 2022, New In “Cocktail Hour Buzz,” CooksSalon

New Salon every Friday – and you’re invited

C’mon in and help yourself to tasty resources

Hosted by Barbara J Nosek

 Cocktail Hour Buzz 

sundowner snacks, drinks, chat, and . . .

whenever I can, related resources & goodies on Amazon

whether for a crew, or for two, or just for you

{links within my items go to the sources shown in red – any links underneath items take you to Amazon unless otherwise indicated, and then only ones with the lock icon}

♦♦♦  Oh how welcome are these No-Cook Dip Recipes, so perfect for cooled-off evenings on the porch or patio or, OK, tucked deep inside the a/c. And it looks like many of the ingredients just may already be resident in your pantry or fridge. Here’s the one I chose – and while I generally like avocados pretty much pure, this fabulous creamy avocado dip is velvety, flavorful and a ready companion for so many other goodies. The prep suggests tortilla or pita chips and crudities, but also calls it into service as a topping for tacos, burgers, and sandwiches. Or, hmmmm, how yum as one of the tiers in 7-layer dip?  Southern Living

For the avocado dip, may want to start with a bit less salt.

Creamy Avocado Dip    7-Layer Dip recipes on google

No-Cook Sauces, Dressings, Dips & Spreads recipe book {vegan}

♦♦♦  Missed it again! {and for the Get Smart fans, “by that much”}. No matter, we can opt to make any day we want our own Tequila Day {the national one was July 22}. And the really good news is a whole bunch of Tequila Cocktails for you to consider, each as summery as can be, hitting that refreshment vibe with strawberries, citrus, coconut, cucumber, pineapple, soda, tonic, or sparkling mineral water, and more.  Patron

Tequila-loving snacks on google

♦♦♦  This recipe, first featured in our 04.27.18 Salon, seemed like a perfect follow-up to last week’s No-bake desserts item. Even with just two words, the title may evoke a whaaaaaaat? Yep, it’s Miso Fudge, and it defies all expectations.

In a word, it’s good. In more words, it’s chocolately, creamy, soft, and indulgent. Gluten free too. And you don’t have to stop there.

This recipe is actually for Miso Fudge Brownies, where the fudge is spread atop the baked brownies along with candied miso almonds. If you want to make just the fudge, as I did, you only need to do step 10, and then let it chill out in the fridge.  Tasting Table

Other miso recipes on google

♦♦♦  Cocktail chat. Do your own sips or the drinks you serve perhaps have a star pedigree? Could that wine or spirit have a connection to, say, George Clooney, Bryan Cranston, Kate Hudson, Sammy Hagar, Blake Shelton? The story “24 Alcohol Brands You Didn’t Realize Were Owned by CelebritieS” tells all. And nice, flavor profiles accompany each and every one.  insider.com

And TheRecipe unveils 20 celeb-owned food brands

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You won’t believe this miso fudge, for April 27-May 3, 2018

  In the Salon this week  

Fudge -> Brownies -> Sundae    Guess what you can freeze    Fun foods that fool    Don’t have a cow, wait, do have one {sort of}    A book-ful of tasty food just for you    The perks of almond flour, who knew    Some magic for bean soup & a classic cocktail plus what to serve at “your” state dinner


Newsy, schmoozy stuff for cooks 

  Love the fact that the Reader’s Digest online newsletter seems to be running even more food articles. The current edition brings us 10 foods we can freeze {might find a few surprises here}. Some I knew, some I didn’t, some I have to try to believe, and one is among the 50 kitchen tricks in my Kindle book. See more in Tip next week.    Freeze it!     50 . . . Tricks

  This bit of fun cookery arrives “pinball” style – from Taste of Home to Reader’s Digest to CooksSalon to you! It’s all about “April Fool” food but would be fun anytime. Find out how to make “onion rings” that are actually candy, a “burger” that’s cookies, “popcorn” that’s cauliflower, a two-layer “cake” that’s meatloaf, and some eyeball and spidery creations you might want to tuck away for Halloween or for a party for little kids or little kids at heart.    See all 23

  Adopt a cow, get cheese. Really! Of course, we’re talking very special cows, very special cheese. The adopt a cow button is at the top of the page in the link, more details if you scroll down.    Cheese it!

  CS Marketplace Spotlight

Cooking for one can be so much fun

Whether it’s most nights or just occasionally, cooking for just yourself can be a challenge. Or . . . it can be a delightful experience. In “Serve Yourself/Nightly Adventures in Cooking For One” author, and “Cooking for One” columnist for the Washington Post, Joe Yonan brings Serve Yourself: Nightly Adventures in Cooking for Oneus creations from every part of the food pyramid for this very purpose, noting that if you do want more, “it’s much easier to double a recipe that’s written for one than it is to shrink one for six.”

Yonan makes clear that of course he loves sharing a meal now and then, but dining solo is “also about answering my particular, ever-shifting cravings.” He takes that a step further, saying unlike Miss Lonely Hearts in Rear Window, “I don’t pretend my true love is sitting across from me – I’m often too excited about the flavors I’ve just put together to think about much of anything else.”

Also see the motto that appears at the end of each of our posts.

“Serve Yourself”    CS Marketplace

  Featured Recipe 

Decadent, Decadent-er, Decadent-est 

Would you ever expect to see “miso” and “fudge” in the same recipe title??? It was intriguing enough I had to try it, especially given the bonus of few ingredients, easy technique. The result: a chocolatey, creamy,  soft {OK, messy!} confection.

But wait, there’s more. Even though I made just the fudge, the full recipe, linked below, is actually for cocoa intensive brownies with the miso fudge as a topping along with miso candied almonds.

And more. The recipe also includes a suggestion for turning the whole shebang into a brownie sundae. And btw, as long as there aren’t any suspect ingredients in the ice cream, the dish is gluten free.

Notes  Since I wanted to first try the fudge as just fudge, I refrigerated it in a spray treated foil lined pan, and then lifted it onto a work surface for cutting.  Note there’s no reason you couldn’t use the fudge/nuts atop your own favorite brownies. Wondering if guests {yours or mine} would be able to figure out the secret ingredient.

Miso Fudge Brownies recipe


The brownies referenced in our Featured Recipe this week achieve their gluten free status by using almond flour, which inspired me to learn more about this ingredient. Wow, what a surprise.

The real thing is made of only ground skinless almonds, which is why no gluten. But it’s also high in fiber, high in protein, and low in carbohydrates, as well as a good source of vitamin E and a number of essential minerals. You may also see it called almond meal.

You can find it here on Amazon

A Peek at My Week

  Made bean soup and while good, turned out broth-ier than I wanted. Hmmm, what to use to thicken? Tomato paste, cheese, mashed potatoes, cornstarch? Didn’t want anything that would dilute the bean taste, so . . . duh . . . used a can of frijoles. Turned out great!

  So maybe I’ll want to host a state-like dinner sometime. Maybe you will. So that thought sent me in search of the menu for the recent event at the White House in honor of French President Emmanuel Macron and wife Brigitte. Here’s what came to the elegantly set table: First Course – goat cheese gateau, tomato jam, buttermilk biscuit crumbles, young variegated lettuces / Second Course – rack of spring lamb, burnt cipollini soubise {pureed onion sauce}, Carolina Gold Rice jambalaya / Dessert – nectarine tart, creme fraiche ice cream.

  Nothing against Mountain Dew, know it has its avid fans, but I just don’t happen to be much of a soda drinker. But I had purchased some for a guest and now had leftovers. Toss? Wait, though I haven’t had one in a very long time, could this contribute to a scotch sour??? Along with some fresh lemon? Did. Good!

  Kept Mystic River on Nice Life Books – Thursdays

  Posted Adoption Message T-shirts & more on DoggieShirtz – Thursdays

  Added Adoption Message T-shirt & more on Amazon

Cook with passion and a party spirit, whether for a crew, or for two, or just for you