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Bacon, Lemon, Scallion Crab Cakes

16oz jumbo lump or backfin crab meat

Zest of a medium lemon

1 cup finely crushed oyster crackers

1/2 cup Hellman’s mayonnaise

2 tablespoons crispy cooked and finely crunched bacon bits

1/2 cup chopped scallions

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 tablespoon butter

In a large bowl combine all ingredients except oil and butter. With a fork, mix ingredients well. With your hands, shape medium-sized crab cakes and set on a flat plate. In frying pan, heat oil and butter over medium-high heat until hot, but being sure not to burn the butter. Place crab cakes in pan and cook until medium brown in color…about 4 minutes each side.

Chipotle Cheddar Cheese Sauce

2 tablespoons butter

1 tablespoon flour

1 cup milk

1/2 cup heavy cream

1/2 cup Sargento 4 State Cheddar Cheese

1 small chipotle pepper diced (from can) with 1 teaspoon Adobo sauce

Salt to taste

In sauce pan, melt butter over medium heat. Add flour. Stir until mixed well. Add the milk and cream stirring frequently. Add cheese, pepper, salt and Adobo sauce. Stir to blend well for a few minutes until just about bubbling and smooth texture.

Red Quinoa with Kale and Caramelized Maple Bacon

4 slices of bacon

4 large kale leaves chopped with stems removed

1 cup of red quinoa

1 1/2 cups of chicken stock

1/4 cup additional chicken stock

1/2 cup brown sugar

1/4 cup maple syrup

1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

2 cloves of garlic, finely minced

1 tablespoon olive oil

Salt and pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. In a bowl, mix the sugar, syrup and cinnamon until a smooth paste. Place the strips of bacon on a baking sheet and bake for about 10 minutes. Remove the bacon and rub some of the sugar mixture over each slice of the bacon evenly. Return the bacon to the oven and bake for another five minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool for a few minutes, then dice the bacon into small bits. Bring the 1 1/2 cups chicken stock and quinoa to boil. Cook for 20 minutes. In the frying pan while the quinoa is cooking, heat the olive oil. Add the garlic and cook for one minute. Add the kale and stir. Add the remaining 1/4 cup chicken stock. Stir and cover for about five minutes. Add the kale to the quinoa along with salt and pepper. Stir and cook until quinoa is done. Stir in the bacon bits.

4 State Cheddar Corn Chowder with Kale and Bacon

3 slices bacon, cooked crunchy and chopped into small bits – reserve one tablespoon of drippings

2 tablespoons butter

1 tablespoon olive oil

2 tablespoons flour

1 small-medium shallot, diced

2 cloves garlic, finely minced

4 ears of corn

Small bunch of kale – about 5 large leaves chopped with stems removed

3 1/2 cups chicken stock

1/2 cup heavy cream

1 cup Sargento 4 State Cheddar Cheese

Salt to taste

1/4 teaspoon black pepper

Cut the corn off the cobs. In a pot of boiling water, add the corn and cook for about 4 minutes. Drain and remove from heat. In a sauce pan, add the tablespoon of bacon drippings and the butter over medium-high heat. Add the shallots and cook for 5 minutes. Add the corn and garlic and cook for about 3 minutes stirring. Add the flour and mix well. Add 3 cups of the stock, cream, turmeric, salt and pepper. Reduce heat to low and mix well. In another sauce pan, add the olive oil. Heat and add the kale. Stir for about a minute and add the remaining 1/2 cup of stock. Cover and cook for about five minutes. Add the kale, bacon bits and cheese to the corn mixture and stir to blend. Serve with a little hot sauce on top.