About a month ago, Casey of Kitchen PLAY, approached me about creating a recipe for the SideCarseries, “30 Days of Outdoor Dining“. She asked that the recipe be specifically designed for summer dining using new Land O Lakes® 4 Cheese Italian Blend. I loved the concept and was extremely honored to be one of the 30 bloggers chosen for the assignment!
Land O Lakes® 4 Cheese Italian Blend, as I discovered, can be found in the deli department of most grocery stores. It brilliantly combines four flavors of cheese: American, Asiago, Parmesan and Romano. I love the idea of using an ingredient that packs the rich flavor of aged cheese while still resembling the melty, creamy cheese I grew up eating in sandwiches. It’s a really fun combination, especially since you can taste each variety of cheese in every bite.
Side note: In my family, I’m known as the ‘Romano’ girl, because I used to eat giant chunks of Pecorino Romano for snacks when I was little. I strongly encourage you to try this as well. So addictive!
After learning of the challenge, I immediately got to work designing a recipe with my food consultant (aka mom). We wanted to create a finger food for summer that would allow the flavors of the cheese to shine without adding too many other ingredients. Our idea? An upgraded version of our family’s tried and true, much loved, potato blintz.
Since the recipe needed to be gluten free, we replaced the traditional crepe wrapper with a rice paper wrapper and then added the Land O Lakes® 4 Cheese Italian Blend to our standard filling. The blintz is perfect for summer because it can be served at room temperature, making it easy to transport for a picnic. Also, it’s a fun and playful finger food! Kids will love to munch on it while taking a break from running around, and adults can relax and dip a blintz in their favorite dip, all while enjoying a conversation amongst friends and family.
With this dish we have, in essence, created our own ‘summer blend’, combining some of our favorite cultures (Asian, Eastern European and Italian) and we hope you’ll see it as a tasty, new addition to your “summer dining” experience.
Note: This cheese is not certified gluten free. For those with serious allergies, please use caution when choosing to eat.
Cheesy Blended Potato Blintz
By Emily & Karen of (Mainly) Gluten Free in NYC
3 Idaho Baking Potatoes, washed, peeled and cut into 1/2 in. dice
2 large, Spanish or Vidalia Onions, chopped (If necessary, place the chopped onions in water to dilute the sulfuric acid irritants and then drain and dry completely before using)
1 ½ – 2 tbsp olive oil
Milk and butter for the mashed potatoes, to taste
Salt and pepper to taste
¾ pound Land O Lakes® 4 Cheese Italian Blend, finely chopped
1 package spring roll wrappers
Roasted red pepper spread for dipping
For the filling:
1. Pour 1 1/2 to 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large fry pan over medium heat and cook the onions until caramelized (about 20 minutes). We advise against using a non-stick pan for this.
2. While the onions are cooking, place the peeled (and diced?) potatoes into a large pot with salted water.
3. Over medium heat, boil the potatoes until tender. Remove from heat, drain and mash by hand with small amounts of milk and butter. (**NOTE: Do not use too much milk or the potatoes will become soupy. You want relatively thick mashed potatoes.)
5. When the onions are caramelized, remove from the heat and place in a large bowl. Salt and pepper to taste.
6. Carefully fold the onions into the mashed potatoes, combining thoroughly. Add ¾ of the chopped Land O Lakes® 4 Cheese Italian Blend cheese and mix until well combined.
1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Line a cookie sheet with aluminum foil and spray well with cooking spray.
2. Follow the directions on the package for using the spring roll wrappers. In our case, we softened each wrapper individually in a round pie plate, filled with lukewarm water as we needed it. We then transferred the wrapper to a linen dish towel to be filled.
3. Place about two tablespoons of filling in the bottom third but near the center, of the wrapper. Fold the bottom portion of the wrapper over the filling and roll it slightly upwards. Now turn the outer edges of the wrapper inward. Begin rolling upwards, wrapping the filling tightly inside.
4. Place each ‘blintz’ on the cookie sheet, leaving about a 1/2 inch between each roll. Spray each blintz slightly with cooking spray and then top each roll with a sprinkle of the Land O Lakes® 4 Cheese Italian Blend. Then lightly sprinkle with paprika.
5. Bake for 15-20 minutes, until the tops are golden brown.
6. Let cool and serve with roasted red pepper spread for dipping. Enjoy!
*Disclosure: This post was sponsored by Land O’Lakes as part of the Kitchen PLAY SideCar series. All opinions given are my own.
Be sure to check Kitchen PLAY every day for the next fabulous recipe featuring new LAND O LAKES® 4 Cheese Italian Blend or LAND O LAKES® Deli American Cheese. Then, get in on the fun by leaving a comment with your own “30 Days of Outdoor Dining” tip for dining al fresco this summer. If you do, you’ll be entered to win a lovely grilling prize pack, including one grilling spatula, one marinade brush, one set of tongs and one grill scraper. Kitchen PLAY will be giving away four prizes total, one each week!
Please visit Kitchen PLAY for sweepstakes guidelines.