Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Mozzarella Cheese Sticks

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 I was trying to figure out what to snack on today and came across a website for Mozzarella Sticks Yum! It's an easy recipe, comes with marinara dipping sauce, and even shares the ingredients to "Emeril's Essence".  The original recipe makes a whole lot more than what I wanted ( I just wanted a little snack!) so I brought down the measurements some (More like eyeballed it. I hate math.) Let's get started..

Ingredients to prepare cheese sticks:
 5 string cheese sticks
1/4 c of flour
1/2 tsp Emeril's Essence
1 egg
milk (to beat with egg)
1/2 c of panko bread crumbs (I used Italian style bread crumbs)
1 tbsp of dried parsley (If you use Italian style bread crumbs, you can omit this.)
Salt and pepper to taste
Canola oil for frying

Marinara Dipping Sauce
8oz can of tomato sauce
1 clove of garlic minced
1 tbsp of olive oil
1/2 tsp. crushed red pepper or to taste
1 tsp Italian seasoning
Salt and pepper to taste

Emeril's Essence
*This makes a lot. So make sure you store in an airtight container (to use in just about everything. BAM!) or cut the measurements.
2 1/2 tbsp paprika
2 tbsp salt
2 tbsp garlic powder
1 tbsp black pepper
1 tbsp onion powder
1 tbsp dried oregano
1 tbsp dried thyme

Unwrap the cheese sticks and cut them in half.  Using three separate bowls, mix flour and Emeril's Essence together in the first bowl. Beat egg with milk in second bowl. In the third bowl mix panko bread crumbs, parsley, salt and pepper (Or just use the Italian bread crumbs by itself). To save myself from washing dishes I just used a paper plate (I know, I know..Not very GREEN. I'm working on it.)

 Dip cheese sticks starting with the flour mixture first, then the egg, then the bread crumbs. Place them on a plate or cookie sheet and freeze for 20-30 min. This hardens the cheese so it's not all mushy and messy when you fry them.
While cheese is getting chilly, heat up the olive oil in a small sauce pan and add the garlic. Saute for a min.  Add the tomato sauce, red pepper, Italian seasoning, salt and pepper. Simmer on low heat for about 15 min.

Heat canola oil in a pan on med. high heat. Place the sticks in oil and fry to a nice golden brown. It doesn't take very long so make sure you watch this like a hawk or you'll have cheese oozing out into the oil.

Drain on paper towel lined plate. Serve immediately with the marinara sauce. Enjoy!!!

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