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Treat dad with gourmet spreads

Happy Father’s Day.

Sadly, Daddy’s day does not receive the same kind of hoopla as the one reserved for moms. Dads donate half of the DNA that makes up our existence but get only about a tenth as much attention on their day of celebration.

I say dads deserve being indulged as much as mom. Luckily, you still have time to go big today.

With moms, it’s all about the candy and calls and brunch and flowers. Dads like food.

Head out to the grocery and make a gourmet feast of bagels and the goodies that go with them. I’m proposing that a fun brunch with fruit, bagels and lots of different types of toppings, followed up by an awesome gift of your presence for the day is the best gift any dad could ask for.

The following recipes can each be whipped up in about 5 minutes.

Smoked Trout Spread

12-ounce package cream cheese

6 to 8 ounces smoked trout, flaked

2 tablespoons ground pecans

1 teaspoon lemon juice

1/8 teaspoon black pepper

Sliced black olives to garnish

Lemon slices to garnish

Do not make this in a food processor. Combine all the ingredients in a glass bowl and mix to combine. Garnish with olive slices and lemon slices. Makes 1 1/2 cups.

Cherry Lime Nut Spread

1 cup dried cherries

1 cup water

2 8-ounce packages cream cheese, softened

1 cup chopped toasted pecans

1 tablespoon fresh lime juice

1/2 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves

1/4 teaspoon freshly grated lime zest

Salt and pepper

In a small, heavy saucepan, combine the cherries and water. Simmer until the liquid is reduced to about 1 tablespoon. Do not boil. Remove pan from heat and cool mixture.

In a bowl of an electric mixer combine the cream cheese, pecans, lime juice, thyme, lime zest and cherry mixture. Mix to combine. Season with salt and pepper to taste until spread is combined well. This can be made two days ahead and kept chilled and covered. Makes 2 cups.

Seafood Spread

6 green onions

1 teaspoon minced garlic

8 ounces cream cheese, softened

1/3 cup sour cream

1 tablespoon drained white horseradish

2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice, or to taste

1 teaspoon Dijon mustard

1 teaspoon Worcestershire or soy sauce, or to taste

Salt and pepper

1/4 teaspoon cayenne

1 pound crab meat, shredded

In the bowl of a food processor combine the green onions and garlic. Pulse once, add the cream cheese and sour cream and pulse just until combined.

Add the horseradish, lemon juice, mustard, Worcestershire sauce and cayenne. Pulse to combine.

Add the crab and pulse just to combine, do not over mix. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Makes 2 cups.

Hershey’s Chocolate Spread

1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese, softened

1/4 cup Hershey’s syrup

2 teaspoons Hershey’s cocoa

2 tablespoons Hershey’s semisweet chocolate chips, plus extra

In a bowl of a food processor combine the cream cheese, syrup and cocoa. Mix to combine, add the chocolate chips.

Just mix to combine. Garnish with extra chocolate chips. Makes 1 cup.

Lois’s Brown Sugar Bacon

1 1/2 cups (packed) brown sugar

1 pound bacon

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place the brown sugar in large, self-closing plastic bag.

Add the individual strips of bacon three or four at a time to the bag and shake to coat. Place the coated bacon on to a broiler pan.

Repeat until all the bacon strips are coated. Bake about 6 minutes and then flip the bacon.

Bake another 6 to 8 minutes, drain on paper towel and serve. Great hot or at room temperature.

– Modified from Epicurious.com – Modified from About.com – Modified from Hershey.com – Submitted by Lois Rose of Glenview, Illinois Slice of Life is a food column that offers recipes, cooking advice and information on new food products. It appears Sundays. If you have a question about cooking or a food item, contact Eileen Goltz at eztlog@gmail.com or write The Journal Gazette, 600 W. Main St., Fort Wayne, IN 46802.

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