Saturday, October 22, 2016

GO CUBS CO Parmesan Cheesy RANCH Snack Mix

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As I am writing this I am basking in the glow of October baseball unlike anything I have ever had in my life.  Last night, my beloved Chicago Cubs won their first post season pennant series in Wrigley Field in over 100 years... Indeed, party like it's 1908!  50 years of being a Cubs fan and I was reduced to a few tears as I watched the celebration.

50 plus years ago I was a wee lad loving the Cubs of the 60's.  Living just under 200 miles away from the friendly confines I even have a few memories of attending some games live!  The line-up included some of the greatest ball players of all time, Ron Santo, Don Kessinger, Randy Hundley, Fergie Jenkins and possibly the greatest player to ever wear the uniform... ERNIE BANKS!

Ernie is one of those rare childhood heroes who never disappointed.  He played to win as much in his declining years as in his glory years.  He set record after record.  His personal life was a shining example of sportsmanship and enthusiasm.  He knew he had fans that read about his every move and he led his life accordingly.  My hero then and still now.

It's time to plan those World Series parties.  I am living in the heart of the American League World Champs of 2015... The Kansas City Royals.  Sadly, last year the Cubs were just a few runs short of a Cubs/Royals series.  Although I would have been just a little torn between who to root root root for (Nah, Cubbie Blue all the way).

This year I have lined up a dozen friends who have promised to cross league lines and cheer on the Cubs... 'Course I have promised a fully catered Game 7 Party.  I would gladly forego that party of the Cubs can win in 4... Dare to dream!

So, I am working out my Blue Food, my Cub (and Ernie) inspired dishes and just general World Series worthy food.

Starting with this Appetizer snack munch mix... I love a good Chex Mix... Since the 60's, this idea pops up just about everywhere.  It is easy, it is a crowd pleaser and it is certainly delicious.

But there always seems to be 2 problems... Buying all the ingredients can make this snack a little expensive.  If you don't shop sales.  The only reason I made this is the perfect storm of sales came along... Chex cereal was only ONE DOLLAR a box!!!  The Cheez-Its were less than $2.  I ended up spending less than $5 for a BIG bowl of snacks!

The other problem is that usually there is one ingredient in a mix that is just not your favorite.  For me, I just do not like those tiny melba toast things that occasionally pop up in other people's mix (besides, those things are usually among the most expensive items).  Feel free to just use your favorites.  For me, I just want cereal, snack crackers, pretzels and the flavoring!

You could add Peanuts only, Mixed Nuts, those Melba Toast things, Cajun Spices even Chocolate chips... There are plenty of options.

This just happens to be my favorite to share...

So, watch those sale ads and of course... ENJOY!

OK... Here's what I did...

Parmesan Cheesy
RANCH Chex Mix

  • 1 Box (About 4 Cups) Favorite flavor of Chex Cereal
  • 1 Box (About 3 Cups) Cheez-It brand snack crackers
  • 2 Cups Small Pretzels
  • 3/4 stick (6 TBS) Butter, melted
  • 1 Cup Grated Parmesan Cheese
  • 1 Package (1 Ounce) Hidden Valley Ranch Seasoning Mix
Cooking Directions
  1. in a LARGE Mixing bowl, add all of the ingredients.
  2. Mix well, be gentle, don't turn the Chex cereal to powder
  3. Microwave the entire bowl on high for one minute.
  4. Stir to mix (again, be gentle)
  5. Repeat microwave step 3 more times (total 4 minutes), stirring to mix each time.
  6. Spread Chex Mix on a single layer to cool
  7. Eat, Snack and ENJOY!


This recipe has been added to my growing list of "52 Church PotLuck Dishes"!

A list of something NEW worthy of being shown off at a neighborhood BYODish (Bring Your Own Dish) Party, a Family special occasion dinner, Any Big Holiday Gathering or of course that glorious day when you bring a dish to share with your Church family...

Ages ago, literally almost a half century ago I was listening to our pastor talking about a PotLuck Dinner. It happened to be scheduled around a church work day when we were expected to weed, polish and do general cleaning and maintenance around the church (you know, back in the day when there were no no-wax floors and church pews smelled of Old English furniture polish). I am of course paraphrasing, but as I recall the pastor said,

"A potluck, like a church requires work. At a potluck everyone is expected to contribute.. At a church no one should come empty handed and no one should leave unfed".
I will confess that in my youth I brought more store bought plastic spoons and forks than I ever brought covered dishes and crock pots of fresh made love and caring delights. But now that I have become a hobbyist cook, I occasionally am reminded of those days and people from my youth. I reminded and I do wish that I could drop a dish of some new creation on those old tables at my fondly remembered Liberty Baptist Church.  Tables covered with newspapers and loaded with God's bounty prepared with love and caring... Enjoy


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