Recipe of the Month: Healthy Holiday Dishes

November 28, 2018 Outdoor Celebrations, Outdoor Cooking

Thanksgiving came and went, it did its damage and we have the extra pounds to prove it.  The average person gains between 7 and 10 pounds between turkey day and New Year’s Eve, so we thought we would serve up healthy holiday dishes for this month’s featured recipes!  These are dishes that you can indulge in without the guilt.

Mulled Wine Granita 

Low-fat Eggnog 

Sweet Potato Skins 

Avocado-Feta Dip 

Greek Layered Dip and Pita Chips (or you could substitute for cucumber slices and it’s even healthier)

Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Pomegranate and Hazelnut 

Warm Spinach Salad

Winter Fruit Salad

Mushroom Stuffed Pork Tenderloin  

Curried Sweet Potato Puree 

Roasted Sweet Potatoes with Honey and Cinnamon 

Chocolate Avocado Pudding (we saved the best for last, trust us, it’s a gift in itself)

We know it’s a lot, but you need options, right?

Cheers and happy holidays!

Holiday Hacks

November 28, 2018 Outdoor Celebrations

The hustle and bustle of the season can leave you saying, “No NO NO” instead of HO HO HO!  We found some easy tips and tricks to get you through the season with holiday cheer!  

Rule #1 – Take it easy on yourself, you create perfection in your mind.  Don’t spend endless hours on something someone else will not even notice!  That’s the only rule, easy right?  Now we have some tips, tricks and holiday hacks!

Decor

Decorate with LED battery operated lights.  They will last forever, you don’t have to worry about a plug and they look so cool!  You can group them inside empty wine bottles, canisters, or our favorite idea, drape them around fire wood!  You get the look of the light in a fire without the mess or the hazard!

Turn your patio into a winter wonderland with these easy and cheap little lanterns.  Fill a little mason jar  1/4 way up with Epsom salt or rock salt, and add a little candle or tea light on top.  Light them and glow!

You can do a lot with little clear jars, fill them with rock salt at the bottom, top with cranberries and sprigs from your Christmas tree.  It’s such a cute affordable way to be festive!

Decorate your windows with snowflakes with hot glue!  Take your glue gun directly to the window and with thin lines create your snowflake.  The best part is when it’s ready come down, it peels right off!

Get out your glue gun again…

Take your pool noodle right from the pool to our outdoor fireplace.  Simply shape the pool noodle in the shape of a wreath and connect it with duct tape.  Hot glue glass ornaments to the frontside if the noodle, wrap a pretty bow around the top and hang!

Food

Create Christmas cubes by freezing cranberries in an ice tray!  It will look festive and gorgeous in a glass of bubbles!

Glue mini candy canes together upside down. Place name tags of food inside them so everyone knows what dish they are enjoying.

Organized

Place all your wrapping paper in a garment bag for easy storage and clutter free gift wrapping!

Avoid a tangled mess with the endless strings of lights by simply wrapping them around a plastic hanger.  They will lie flat to be stored instead of a bulky disaster.

Gifts

Use your leftover paint samples from redoing lil’ Johny’s room, to create DIY gift tags!  Cut into little trees, a snowman, wreathes, you name it!

Patio Party

Have a hot cocoa and dessert bar with your neighbors!  Melt the chocolate for your desserts in a mason jar, set in a slow cooker on low.  This will keep everything warm and gooey for your guests all at once!

Who doesn’t love s’mores… Stay roasty, toasty by the fire without all of the mess.  You can still roast the marshmallows in your fire pit, but instead of using hunks of chocolate, simply spread Nutella on the graham cracker as your chocolate.

Happy holiday hacks!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Red, White & Ooh!

June 25, 2018 Outdoor Celebrations, Outdoor Cooking

This Fourth of July be the host with the most, let sparks fly, have the most patriotic patio, the most festive food, and have your guests leave with stars in their eyes!  We are about to help you throw one heck of a birthday party for America!  A touch of red here, a dab of white there and a lot of ooh everywhere and this will be one for the books!

We have decor demos, tasty treats, boozy sips and kid-friendly fun on our Pinterest page! It’s stocked with patriotic pins great for ideas on how to perk up your patio.  Check out these rustic centerpieces, they’re affordable too!

 

 

Give them something to remember with this adorable DIY American flag backdrop, perfect for picture taking!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Something fun for the kids … homemade edible firecrackers made from cake and POP ROCKS!  Watch out for the tasty lil’ explosion in your mouth!

 

 

Salute to this super salad that will leave you refreshed on a hot 4th of July!

Salad recipe 4th of July

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

How ’bout some 50 Star Chicken and other festive foods for the main course?

Texas Custom Patios

End things with a real bang with these boozy bombs!

Red, White and Booze

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Since the kiddos can’t have the cherries, how about this kid-friendly patriotic punch

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Or add the alcohol back in with these red, white and booze ideas!

 

And top it off with some Star Spangled Sweetness!

 

Recipe of the Month: Super Duper Bowl Dips

January 30, 2018 Outdoor Celebrations, Outdoor Cooking

Part of the fun in game day is all the yummy food that you get to try!  Most save up their appetite all day so they can run a 40 yard dash to the grub hub a.k.a. the kitchen!  The Food Network has some tasty touchdowns that will have your party poppin’!  Who doesn’t like a good dip?  Below are 36 of the best recipes that can be served in a bowl, super big bowls!  Followed by sliders and snacks great for backyard tailgating!

Dips served in super bowls:

Tropical Guacamole

Hot Crab Dip

Mustard-Beer Dip

Bacon-Jalapeño Dip

Cauliflower Hummus

Buttery Herbed Nuts

Pizza Snack Mix

And of course the traditional favs like meaty queso and salsa!

For all of the recipes and more, visit here!  

 

A Blitz BBQ

January 29, 2018 Outdoor Celebrations

This time last year Houston was all ramped up and ready for the big game.  Just being in the same state as the game of all games was electric for Texas.  This year the big battle of the pigskins is in Minneapolis, Minnesota February 4th at 6:30pm.   So unless you are planning to visit the 22nd most populous state in the country… you need to start thinking of the best seat you can get for super duper Sunday.

beer on patio

No better place to party for this football frenzy than your own patio!   After all, you’ll have the best seat in the house, comfortable seating, great food at your fingertips and you’ll always be close to a bathroom.  Many people have outdoor patios built just so they can either watch football outside or so they can entertain at a moment’s notice!  In fact, some of our customers called us back in August of 2017 and said, “Hey, Texas Custom Patios, we would like to have this ready by Super Bowl Sunday, is that possible.?” So we got to building and guess what, the covered patios, outdoor kitchens and living rooms were built and those watching parties are sure to be a touchdown now!  So go ahead, invite over your football-loving friends, fire up the grill and get ready to party.

Real Simple came up with your must-have checklist for your Super Bowl LII party … don’t miss a pass, make sure your party is a hit!

You can make your list and check it twice, but at the end of the day … there are three categories of “Super Sunday Party-Goers” and we have something for each one.

“The Super Sunday Snack Specialist”

The anticipation of sweet and savory delights to enjoy during the big game brings this fan to the table… literally, and probably more than once! For the Snack Specialist, we offer this list of Super Sunday party dishes that can be prepared outside.

Grilled Buttermilk Hot Wings
Grilled Pizza
Grilled Chicken and Vegetable Enchiladas – make ahead
Pig Candy
Cookies & Cream Football Dip 

sweet dip

“The Super Sunday Ad Aficionado”

This fan may talk through every single play, then shush everyone when the commercials begin. We get it. After all, advertisers pay huge dollars for these coveted spots and strive to put their most creative efforts out there. For the Ad Aficionado, we offer this list, which gives you a sneak preview of what companies are buying up ads this year and some hints at their plans.

The Big Game Ad Chart

“The Super Sunday Game Devotee”

When your team makes the Big Game, the intensity dials up even more! Be sure to use your outside voice on your patio when cheering on your team to victory. For the Game Devotee, here’s a great resource to keep up with the latest game news!

Playoff Picture

Enjoying the Big Game outdoors is better for everyone …

What’s your favorite part of the game? Is it the food, the ads or the football?  Comment on our Facebook page, we want to know!

 

Recipes of the Month: Outrageous Eats

December 22, 2017 Outdoor Celebrations, Outdoor Cooking

December’s bad choices bring January’s New Year’s Resolutions.  So before we all decide to jump on the diet/health/workout wagon, what’s one last binge meal(s)?  Below we have collected some of the most insanely calorically crazed recipes.  Some perfect for to bring to your holiday party, others to get cozy on the couch and devour alone!  Don’t just leave Santa boring cookies and milk this year… enjoy and happy eating!

The Donut Burger

Christmas in a Calzone

Grilled Mango and Rum-SoakedPound Cake 

Grilled Doughnuts with Chocolate Glaze

S’more Stuffed French Toast

Nutella and Bacon Stuffed French Toast 

Brie and Blueberry Waffle Grilled Cheese

Loaded Baked Potato Dip and Homemade Chips

Churros Balls with Warm Chocolate Dipping Sauce 

Frozen Snickerdoodle Crunch Cake

Holiday Hacks

November 30, 2017 Outdoor Celebrations

The hustle and bustle of the season can leave you saying, “No NO NO” instead of HO HO HO!  We found some easy tips and tricks to get you through the season with holiday cheer!  

Rule #1 – Take it easy on yourself, you create perfection in your mind.  Don’t spend endless hours on something someone else will not even notice!  That’s the only rule, easy right?  Now we have some tips, tricks and holiday hacks!

Decor

Decorate with LED battery operated lights.  They will last forever, you don’t have to worry about a plug and they look so cool!  You can group them inside empty wine bottles, canisters, or our favorite idea, drape them around fire wood!  You get the look of the light in a fire without the mess or the hazard!

Turn your patio into a winter wonderland with these easy and cheap little lanterns.  Fill a little mason jar  1/4 way up with Epsom salt or rock salt, and add a little candle or tea light on top.  Light them and glow!

You can do a lot with little clear jars, fill them with rock salt at the bottom, top with cranberries and sprigs from your Christmas tree.  It’s such a cute affordable way to be festive!

Decorate your windows with snowflakes with hot glue!  Take your glue gun directly to the window and with thin lines create your snowflake.  The best part is when it’s ready come down, it peels right off!

Get out your glue gun again…

Take your pool noodle right from the pool to our outdoor fireplace.  Simply shape the pool noodle in the a the shape of a wreath and connect it with duct tape.  Hot glue glass ornaments to the frontside if the noodle, wrap a pretty bow around the top and hang!

Food

Create Christmas cubes by freezing cranberries in an ice tray!  It will look fest and gorgeous in a glass of bubbles!

Glue mini candy canes together upside down. Place name tags of food inside them so everyone knows what dish they are enjoying.

Organized

Place all your wrapping paper in a garment bag for easy storage and clutter free gift wrapping!

Avoid a tangled mess with the endless strings lights by simply wrapping them around a plastic hanger.  They will lay flat to be stored instead of a bulky disaster.

Gifts

Use your leftover paint samples from redoing lil’ Johny’s room, to create DIY gift tags!  Cut into little trees, a snowman, wreathes, you name it!

Patio Party

Have a hot cocoa and dessert bar with your neighbors!  Melt the chocolate for your desserts in a mason jar, set in a slow cooker on low.  This will keep everything warm and gooey for your guests all at once!

Who doesn’t love s’mores… Stay roasty, toasty by the fire without all of the mess.  You can still roast the marshmallows in your fire pit, but instead of using hunks of chocolate, simply spread Nutella on the graham cracker as your chocolate.

Happy holiday hacks!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Food

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

more!!!!

Festive Fun On The Patio

October 28, 2017 Outdoor Celebrations

Getting in the holiday spirit for any occasion  can be both fun inside and outside!  Get inspiration from this neat video we found by Southern Living.  Click the video below!

And no Halloween party is complete without some spooky snacks! Click the image below for 10 freaky recipes! 

And complete your haunted Halloween with some cool pumpkin carving ideas!

 

 

A Festive Fourth

June 29, 2017 Outdoor Celebrations

We are about to help you throw the best birthday party of all … America’s birthday party!  The 4th of July should be spent with family and friends celebrating our country’s independence!  Be the “it” patio party this holiday … just add a little red, white & blue for an awe and ooh!   We have decor demos, tasty treats, boozy sips and kid-friendly fun on our Pinterest page! It’s stocked with patriotic pins great for ideas on how to perk up your patio.  Check out these clever ways to use mason jars, perfect for centerpieces, decorative candles and more.

Texas Custom Patios

Give them something to remember with this adorable DIY American flag backdrop, perfect for picture taking!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Load up a clear mason jar with the something salty, sweet and super cute like these Patriotic Pretzel Dippers!

Texas Custom Patios

Something fun for the kids … homemade edible firecracker popcorn, made with POP ROCKS!  Watch out for the tasty lil’ explosion in your mouth!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Salute to this super salad that will leave you refreshed on a hot 4th of July!

Salad recipe 4th of July

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

How ’bout some 50 Star Chicken and other festive foods for the main course?

Texas Custom Patios

End things with a real bang with these boozy bombs!

Red, White and Booze

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Since the kiddos can’t have the cherries, how about this kid-friendly patriotic punch…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And top it off with some Star Spangled Sweetness!

Recipe of the Month: Secret Recipe Pulled Pork and Fire Cracker Cookies

June 26, 2017 Outdoor Celebrations, Outdoor Cooking

Independence Day is about celebrating our country, gathering around the delicious food with our family and friends and of course, fireworks!  We have a recipe that will have your party booming with flavor.  Plus, check out our Pinterest page below for some patriotic party plans!   But first, the main course …

Pulled Pork Barbecue Sandwiches

by Tyler Florence

Ingredients

Dry Rub:
Cider-Vinegar Barbecue Sauce:

Directions

Cider-Vinegar Barbecue Sauce:

Mix the paprika, garlic power, brown sugar, dry mustard, and salt together in a small bowl. Rub the spice blend all over the pork. Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour, or up to overnight.

Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F. Put the pork in a roasting pan and roast it for about 6 hours. An instant-read thermometer stuck into the thickest part of the pork should register 170 degrees F, but basically, what you want to do is to roast it until it’s falling apart.

While the pork is roasting, make the barbecue sauce. Combine the vinegar, mustard, ketchup, brown sugar, garlic, salt, cayenne, and black pepper in a saucepan over medium heat. Simmer gently, stirring, for 10 minutes until the sugar dissolves. Take it off the heat and let it sit until you’re ready for it.

When the pork is done, take it out of the oven and put it on a large platter. Allow the meat to rest for about 10 minutes. While it’s resting, deglaze the pan over medium heat with 3/4 cup water, scraping with a wooden spoon to pick up all of the browned bits. Reduce by about half. Pour that into the saucepan with the sauce and cook 5 minutes.

While the pork is still warm, you want to “pull” the meat: Grab 2 forks. Using 1 to steady the meat, use the other to “pull” shreds of meat off the roast. Put the shredded pork in a bowl and pour half of the sauce over. Stir it all up well so that the pork is coated with the sauce.

To serve, spoon the pulled pork mixture onto the bottom half of each hamburger bun, and top with some slaw. Serve with pickle spears and the remaining sauce on the side.

Cole Slaw:

1 head green cabbage, shredded

2 carrots, grated

1 red onion, thinly sliced

2 green onions (white and green parts), chopped

1 fresh red chile, sliced

1 1/2 cups mayonnaise

1/4 cup Dijon mustard

1 tablespoon cider vinegar

1 lemon, juiced

Pinch sugar

1/2 teaspoon celery seed

Several dashes hot sauce

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Combine the cabbage, carrots, red onion, green onions, and chile in a large bowl. In another bowl, stir together the mayonnaise, mustard, vinegar, lemon juice, and sugar. Pour the dressing over the cabbage mixture and toss gently to mix. Season the cole slaw with the celery seed, hot sauce, salt, and black pepper. Chill for 2 hours in the refrigerator before serving.

You can’t have a Fourth of July party without a little red, white, and blue!  These cookies from HEB (if you’re in the Houston area) are called Red, White & Boom Twisters … they have popping candy in the cream, so it’s literally a party in your mouth.  Oreo also makes a version that is pretty tasty, the kids will go wild over them!   Check out our Pinterest page for inspiration on patriotic sweets and decor ideas.

Happy Birthday, America!

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