There is nothing that says summer like the smell of meat on the grill! Whether you use charcoal or gas, grill burgers or smoke pork shoulders, or are a complete grilling newbie, here’s ten tips to help you get the most out of your summer grilling.

  1. Always clean your grill: The old adage that a grill encrusted with old, burnt, meat “adds flavor” is not true at all. A hot grill is easiest to clean, so give it at least ten minutes of heat before scrubbing it down with a grill brush to get the big stuff off, then use tongs to clean it with a paper towel soaked in vegetable oil to get it ready for cooking.
  2. Keep the heat in: Grills are designed to cook with the covers on. Flare ups and temperature are much easier to control if you use that cover. You don’t want to char your meat in flames, you want the heat to rise and cook your meat to the perfect temperature. Speaking of temperature…
  3. Use a thermometer: The only way to be sure your meat is ready is to use a thermometer. With experience, you can learn to judge doneness by touch, but this takes quite a while and you will have some stumbles along the way. Most grills today have built-in thermometers, but if not, add a separate meat thermometer to your grill kit.
  4. For charcoal grills, use lumpwood and a chimney starter: Lumpwood burns cleaner, adds no foreign chemicals to your meat, and provides a hotter flame. It’s slightly harder to control, but produces great results once you get used to it. A chimney starter eliminates the need for lighter fluid or “quick-light” charcoal – just add paper underneath and watch those coals get burning hot!
  5. Temper meat before grilling: Try not to put cold meat directly on the grill, but instead let it sit out for 30 minutes to come closer to room temperature, which will ensure a more even cook. The one exception is if you’re looking for a truly rare steak or tuna, then keep it cold until you slap it on the grill to sear the outside.
  6. Add some smoke: There is nothing like adding a nice smoky taste to your meat. Oak, hickory, and mesquite are some of the most common. Personally I like to use smoke when cooking some beautiful center cut pork chops and baked potatoes.
  7. Don’t move squeeze or flatten: You really should touch the meat as little as possible. Don’t move it around the grill, or push it hard against the grill to ensure it’s cooked. Squeezing or flattening meat releasing some of the juice, which then dries it out. Speaking of drying out…
  8. Consider brining, marinating, and glazes: Brining is a terrific way to prepare pork in particular but can be good for poultry as well. Marinades and glazes are great for all kinds of meat, just find the ones you like and tweak them until they become your go to masterpieces. Weber’s cider-simmered brats recipe is one of my favorites – try it with these gorgeous German-style bratwurst from Deli Direct!
  9. Find some recipes you love: Treat grilling like regular cooking and learn some great recipes. My two favorite sources are Weber, both their website (also with lots of great video tips on grilling techniques) and their book Way to Grill , the BBQ Pit Boys online videos.
  10. Don’t overcook pork!: Pork is literally my favorite meat to grill, but it is devastating when someone overcooks it. Stop when the inside is pink, then let it sit for five minutes. That’s more than enough to ensure it’s safe to eat and still be delicious!
 

 

Summertime is the perfect opportunity to get together with family and friends. The gorgeous weather in the area and all throughout the Midwest is just waiting to be enjoyed. Plus, with the 4th of July coming up there isn’t any better time to entertain a group of your favorite guests at your home for a backyard barbeque.

You know what makes 4th of July entertaining a thousand times better? Ordering quick and fresh delivery from Deli Direct! We are your go-to source for gourmet high quality deli meats, cheeses, sausages, and even dessert treats brought right to your door with our easy online ordering. If you are looking to put together a fantastic soiree with all the right foods to have, look no further than Deli Direct. Here are some ideas on how to make your 4th of July entertaining the absolute best it can be.

Have a Cheese Wheel and Sausage Platter

 
With so many different cheeses to select, you can pick out a variety of natural and cold packed cheese to set up a terrific sausage and cheese wheel. This form of charcuterie combined with tasty cheese will keep your guests coming back for more. As an appetizer platter to set out when your friends or family arrive, it’s going to taste amazing with a cold glass of summer rose, or even a hoppy craft beer from a local brewery. Nothing says summer like chilled drinks and eats with friends, don’t you agree?
 

Set Out Olives and Pickles to Snack On

 
Another perfect app to have is a selection of olives and pickles to snack on. During the hot summer months, it’s best to think of appetizers that you can serve room temperature or even cold to your guests. Try our Hot and Spicy Beans or the JoJo’s Kick n’ Hot Kosher Dill Pickles to give a little fiery heat to your pickle platters.

 

If you are an olive lover, our selection is top notch. The only trouble you’ll have is trying to decide which kind of olives to order. Try the Redneck Cheddar Head Stuffed Olives, Redneck Habanero Stuffed or the Mild Martini Olives Gift Pack for a less spicy option to set out. Here’s a fun fact, did you know that olives are fruit and not vegetables? Well, whatever they are called, they are sure tasty.
 

Party Dips Are a Must Have

 
A few party dips with either chips, or veggies is a nice idea as well. You can even get a little creative with it by having sweet as opposed to savory dips for a dessert presentation. The Sea Salt Caramel Delight Dip is perfect with apple slices, berries or even cut up sponge cake or angel food cake. You can get really creative with the kinds of finger foods you serve with various dips. Just remember no double dipping!

 

Grill To Your Heart’s Content

 
Grilling is obviously one of the best 4th of July summertime party meals. At Deli Direct, we offer a great variety of premium meats to throw on the grill for all your happy carnivore guests. This would include of course traditional Jumbo Meat Franks for a Chicago style dog (no ketchup please!), but also New York Strip Steaks, and Center Cut Pork Chops. You can’t go wrong with a grilled entree to satisfy your hungry guests. No one wants a rumbling tummy when they are waiting for a neighborhood fireworks show.

 

With all the fantastic options in food, entertaining has never been easier to plan for. Let Deli Direct make your next 4th of July party, a gathering of food and friends to remember.

 

If you're a fan of spicy food--especially hot peppers--then you've likely heard of the ghost pepper. This one is so potent that eating it raw is often considered dangerous and is not something the average person does. In some restaurants across the country there are contests that award people who successfully eat ghost peppers. Curious about them, but don’t want to go all in just yet? Thankfully, it's possible to enjoy it in a less hazardous way with our Blazzing Hot Ghost Pepper Cheese spread.

What Is The Blazzing Hot Ghost Pepper Cheese Spread?

This delicious spread offers you eight ounces of cheesy heat for under five dollars, and is a nice alternative to other spicy pepper dips. Keep in mind that compared to our Jalapeno Cheese Sprea d with a heat rating of two out of five peppers, the ghost pepper spread is a full five out of five on this scale. While it is intense, the combination of the cheese and pepper makes it slightly more palatable and more versatile than eating a pepper straight up.

Even with it being less hot than eating a ghost pepper, it’s still going to burn a bit. We've helped prepare you for this—even if an experienced spicy-food eater—by coming up with a few guidelines.

Before Your Ghost Pepper Cheese Spread Consumption

  • Gradually increase your spicy tolerance by eating Jalapeno and other less intense peppers. Cook with them and eat them raw. If you’re already accustomed to eating hot foods, you might be able to skip this part. But if you’re sensitive the heat, this step is crucial.
  • Eat at least one spicy pepper a day to further increase your tolerance – start with pepper products and increase to whole raw peppers.
  • The day you want to eat your cheese spread, eat a normal non-spicy meal--something small--to help provide your body with some fat to absorb some of the spiciness of the pepper. This might seem like cheating, but the ghost pepper is really this hot.
  • Before you eat the spread, take antacids such as Tums, or other products to aid with indigestion and heartburn that may occur soon after eating this. Getting the pepper past your mouth is only the first part, as your stomach can give you enduring problems for days to follow if you don’t treat it right.

Recovering After You Do

After you're done eating, have a dairy beverage or even ice cream on standby to help cool the burning inside your mouth. Dairy products have been proven to be an effective way to decrease the severity of spicy food. This is because the casein in milk binds to the oils in the peppers to help wash away the heat. It’s okay to let it sit in your mouth for a while before swallowing.

Be sure to wash your hands with soap and warm water to extract the pepper oils from your skin. This grease can cause burning sensations and irritation should it get into your eyes or other delicate parts of your body. The oils can settle deep into the grooves of your skin so don’t underestimate ability to burn the next day, even with a few washings. 

How You Can Use This Spread

Once you know your tolerance for this spread, you can enjoy it a number of ways.

  • Spread it on a variety of delicious crackers.
  • Use it as a chip dip for when Jalapeno dips aren't spicy enough.
  • Dabble a little on a cheeseburger to give it a nice kick.
  • Spread it on a cold meat and cheese sandwich.

These simple serving techniques will help make your ghost pepper spread more than a novelty item. Be mindful of putting this dip out during a gathering. People should be warned of its heat, and it should not be within easy reach of children.

If you’ve wanted to try the ghost pepper and just didn’t think you could handle the heat, this cheese spread might be a good way to find out. Just remember to take proper precautions before and after eating it. It's not very often that you have to think this much about eating one food, but your experience will be better when you know what to expect and how to handle it.

If you want to learn more about this spread or make an order, please contact us today.

 

As the weather warms and the calendar starts to fill up with barbecues and picnics, many of us are racking our brains for some fun and tasty recipes to share with friends and family. Summer sausage is one of those foods that many people enjoy but often don’t consider for use beyond the usual cheese and meat plate. This is a shame because summer sausage is actually much more diverse and adaptable than people assume.

Here are four unique ways that you can use our summer sausage to create delicious snacks and meals.

1. Mini Sausage Sandwiches

There are a couple of different ways that you can use summer sausage as "mini-sandwiches." The method you're probably thinking of is placing small slices of summer sausage on top of crackers or slices of baguette and topping it with a bit of sharp cheddar. While definitely delicious, there is an even better way to make mini-sandwiches: by using the summer sausage as the bread.

That's right: you're going to cut your sausage into thick slices and place cheese, turkey, and your favorite sandwich dressing between the summer sausage slices. This might seem a little strange, but trust us when we say it's shockingly good. It's also a great way for people who are cutting back on carbs to still enjoy the treat.

2. Hot & Honey-Glazed

Summer sausage is traditionally served cold or at room temperature, but it doesn’t have to be. When cooked, summer sausage takes on a unique flavor and texture that is merely hinted at when it’s uncooked.

Start by preheating your oven to 325 degrees. While the oven is heating, slice your summer sausage accordion style (¾ the way through), place in a small baking dish, and drizzle with our delicious Triple Treat Honey Glaze Spread.

Once the oven is done heating, slide the dish into the oven and let it cook for approximately 40 minutes, basting the sausage with the glaze halfway through. Then, take the sausage out of the oven, finish slicing, and serve it with a side of potatoes. Mix the leftover meat drippings with some extra glaze for a smoky-sweet dipping sauce.

3. A Zesty Salad Topping

People often consider salads to be a somewhat boring food. However, there are a variety of ingredients that you can use to spice up your salads, including delicious salad dressings, croutons, and, of course, summer sausage.

The tangy flavor of our summer sausage is perfect for just about any salad type, but we think it goes best in a Caesar salad with tomatoes, herbed croutons, cucumbers, and fresh mozzarella. Drizzle with a simple dressing of balsamic vinegar, olive oil, and herbs, and you’re ready to eat!

The trick to this recipe is to dice your meat small enough to make it easy to sprinkle on your salad. The bits should be just a little over bacon bit size. Sprinkle them directly on top of the salad before adding your dressing, and then mix everything together. You'll be surprised at how good these homemade summer sausage bits are on your salad. You might never use bacon bits again!

4. Spicy Sub Sandwich

Sub sandwiches are always a delightful lunch or dinner, and they can be made even better with our Ragin Cajun Summer Sausage. Use a meat slicer to cut your summer sausage 1/8th of an inch thick, and layer it onto a homemade sub. Now you can do one of two things: eat the sub as is or toast it in your toaster oven.

Heating it will bring out some of the flavors of the meat and give the bread an extra crunch. Next, add lettuce, cucumbers, tomatoes, or any other veggies you like. Just before serving, add mayonnaise, one of our delicious cheese spreads, or some Big Bad Bubba’s BBQ Sauce, and enjoy!

As you can see, summer sausage can be used to add a unique and tangy flavor to a variety of dishes. The ways that it can be integrated into multiple recipes makes it an indispensable part of any kitchen. To learn more about our summer sausage or to place an order, contact us today.

Getting ready to watch the big game with the guys, or having family and friends over for a special gathering? You're going to need snacks! Don't offer those old, tired cheese dips you've been serving to everyone for years. Put out a dip with some kick to it—creamy, spicy, fresh, and unforgettable.

Okay, I know you're skeptical. But if your taste buds love heat, we've got the perfect cheese dip recipe for you. We're not going to use any thin, processed cheese to make this dip. Blah! We're going to use a specialty cheddar cheese. Because as they say, "Cheddar is always better."

You won't need many ingredients, and you should already have in your home all of the utensils that you'll require. Preparation is fast and easy, and the results will have everyone clamoring for more!

Ingredients

You'll need one large mixing bowl; make sure it fits into your microwave. Find any cheese slicer that you have around. You'll also need a colander. Grab a large spoon. Just something to stir with. You'll need some sort of cling wrap or plastic lid, and some pot rags or oven mitts, so you don't burn your hands.

How to Prepare

First, slice the cheese. Super thin slices aren't necessary. It will still melt just fine. Once done, toss those pieces into the bowl. Empty the can of chili right on top. Take the jar of jalapeños and dump the contents into your colander to drain off the juice. Make sure you put the colander in the sink first or you'll have a mess.

If you don't want as much heat, remove the seeds from the jalapeños. Once the juice has drained, drop the jalapeños into the bowl. Mix everything together the best that you can (we'll do more mixing later, so don't sweat it too much).

Now, place the cling wrap or lid on top of the bowl, so it doesn't explode all over the inside of your microwave. Leave a small area on one side of the bowl uncovered, just enough to let it breathe.

Cooking Instructions

Place the bowl in the microwave and set it for 4 minutes. After 4 minutes, take it out using oven mitts (this bowl will get hot), and peel back the cling wrap. Watch out for any hot steam that escapes, then stir. Re-cover and place the bowl back into the microwave for another 4 minutes. Remove and again stir.

Then, back in it goes for another 4 minutes. Stir and check the consistency. If you want your dip chunky, it's probably about perfect now. If you prefer a thinner dip, then it might need a few more minutes of in and out. Don't forget to stir each time.

Finalizing

After the cheese dip is the consistency that you want, give it a taste. Ah, delicious! If it's not spicy enough, add 4-5 shakes of the Chicago Hit Sauce. Stir it in and taste again. If it's still not hot enough, you were probably a fire-breathing dragon in a former life! But go for it and add some more, until it's perfect.

This recipe will make approximately 8 servings. Once you've divided it up, set out the serving bowls along with your favorite tortilla chips and enjoy!

You might also want to keep a gallon of ice cream on hand for any guests who can't handle the burn but wanted to give it a try anyway. For your family and friends who do love the burn, they'll beg you for this recipe!

For more recipes and specialty products, contact us today. We love great food. Try us once and you're sure to become part of our ever-growing family of happy, loyal Deli Direct customers.

Spring is nearly here, and your calendar is probably already filling up with engagement parties, bridal showers, and weddings. Maybe you’re even planning one of your own! Whatever your reason for celebrating love this spring, if you’re in charge of preparing or planning the food, you’ll need to not only consider taste but also aesthetics. Treats that are both beautiful and delicious please the palate and add that extra touch of elegance and style to any party.

Not sure where to start? Check out these perfect party dip hacks! We promise they’re “berry” good.

Terrific Tarts

For starters, skip the standard onion and guacamole dips. Go for the White Chocolate Raspberry Swirl and the Heaven Sake Cheesecake party dips instead. The premixed flavor packets are meant to be combined with whipped topping and cream cheese, but there’s no reason not to deviate from the norm. For example, why not buy mini tart shells, fresh mint, dark chocolate, and berries too?

Readymade mini tart shells are often available for purchase in the freezer or refrigerated display cases of most major grocery stores. If your store is all sold out of the ready-made tart shells, don’t stress. The shells are surprisingly easy to make. They require the following pantry staples:

  • ¼ Cup Vegetable Shortening (Chilled)
  • 1/3 Cup Butter (Cubed)
  • 1.75 Cups All-Purpose Flour
  • 1 Tbsp. Granulated Sugar
  • 5 Tbsp. Ice Cold Water

The tart shell ingredients should be combined just like any other pie crust. As such, everything but the water should go into a food processor and get run through the coarse or pulse setting. Afterward, the water should be added a little at a time until the mini tart dough can be easily rolled up into small balls.

Once the tart dough has been shaped into small balls, you’ll need to roll each one out. Next, place them into their respective, greased tart pans and bake them for 20 to 30 minutes in a 375-degree oven. Ideally, the oven should be preheated for 10 to 15 minutes before sliding the tart pan onto the center shelf. However, some ovens may take longer to come to the right temperature.

Allow the cooked tart shells to cool. To continue, use a pastry bag to pipe the party dip into the mini-tart shells. Be careful not to overfill the bag because the warmth of a person’s hand has the potential to heat up the dip. And if the dip is partially chilled, it will hold the shape of the pastry bag tip longer.

Afterward, add shaved chocolate, berries, and fresh mint to complete the presentation. They’ll make excellent engagement party or bridal shower desserts. And if you’re having the party outside, we’ve got another berry good hack you may want to try. It involves candy molds and the freezer.

A Cool Party Dip Alternative

Instead of piping the party dip into the mini tart shells, fill cute little candy molds instead. Then place them into the freezer 24 to 48 hours before the engagement or bridal shower is expected to begin. Depending on the freezer’s temperature, the dip should harden and take on the shape of their molds.

Before the guests arrive, pop the frozen party dip sculptures out of the molds. Use them to create little appetizer or dessert plates. If you’re going with the appetizers, plate the frozen dip with freshly sliced fruits and decorative swirls of yogurt.

If desserts are the engagement party or bridal shower order of the day, grab some sliced pound or sponge cake. Place the sliced cake onto individual plates and dust them with powdered sugar, then use the frozen party dip molds as the pièce de résistance. Put one on top of each cake and serve. As the dip melts, it will combine with the cake and taste amazing.

To uncover more great party dip hacks like these, contact us today.

 

Caramelized onions add a deep, rich flavor to most any savory dish. Sometimes, though, you don't want to take the time to cook them before you can start the rest of your recipe. Taking a shortcut with our Caramelized French Onion Dip mix gives you all the flavor without the fuss.

Try these seven crazy, ingenious recipes with our Caramelized French Onion Dip to make your family or dinner guests think you slaved over the meal. Then use the time you save for an extra cup of coffee or a glass of wine.

1. Hearty Roast Beef or Pork

Not only does the dip mix save you time you'd usually spend measuring spices and mincing herbs, but you can save even more time by popping it into the oven or the slow-cooker and using that cook time for other tasks.

For quick clean-up, prepare your meal in an oven cooking bag. This also keeps the meat moist, while the "low and slow” cooking technique makes it tender.

Start by preheating the oven to 350 degrees. Sprinkle 1/4 cup of flour into the bag and shake it well to coat the inside.

Next, place a beef or pork roast inside the bag. You can use any cut of beef or pork, but a rump roast or sirloin roast works well. Scrub baby carrots, small potatoes, and baby portabella mushrooms; if the potatoes are large, cut them in half.

Mix a package of Caramelized French Onion Dip mix with 3/4 cup of water. Pour the sauce over the roast, massaging it through the bag to be sure the whole surface is coated. Add the carrots, potatoes and mushrooms and close the bag with its tie. Cut five or six 1/2-inch slits. Bake the roast for 2 1/2 to 3 hours or until it is tender.

2. Not Your Mama’s Meatballs

Mix up a batch of Caramelized French Onion Dip meatballs; you won't need your mama’s marinara to top them. They're perfect all by themselves or served up on crusty French or Italian bread rolls as sandwiches.

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Mix 1 package of dip mix with 1 pound of ground turkey, 1/2 cup of oatmeal, and 1 egg. Use your hands to blend everything thoroughly and then form the mixture into meatballs. For an extra touch, tuck a small piece of mozzarella or cheddar cheese into the center of the meatball.

Place the balls on a 9-inch x 13-inch baking sheet that you've lined with parchment paper, and cook them for 20 minutes or until they are cooked through.

If you still want a sauce after you taste these yummy treats, mix a little softened cream cheese, sour cream, and dip mix together in a saucepan, and heat it through on low heat.

3. Palate-Pleasing Cheesy Bread

Cheese and onions: what more do you need to know about this dish to know it's going to be a new favorite?

You can use any cheese blend that you have on hand if these aren't your favorites. And you can even make this ahead of time and freeze it for later. Just pop it into zippered freezer bags before baking, then thaw and bake it when you're ready to nosh.

Grate 2 cups each of sharp cheddar and Monterrey Jack cheeses. Mix them with 1/2 cup of grated Parmesan cheese (the good, fresh stuff), 1/2 cup of mayonnaise, 4 tablespoons softened butter, and a package of Caramelized French Onion Dip mix.

Cut a loaf of crusty French bread in half lengthwise, and spread the cheese mixture on both halves. Bake the bread at 350 degrees for 10 minutes, or if you're baking it straight out of the freezer, bake it for 20 minutes.

4. Kicked Up Grilled Cheese

It's hard to believe, but there might be times when you actually have a bit of Caramelized French Onion Dip leftover after a party. Don’t let it go to waste!

Spread one side of two slices of whole wheat bread with the dip. Place one slice dip-side down in a skillet or on a griddle (or panini press). Then, top with your favorite cheese (a smoky Gouda would be terrific) and add the second slice of bread, dip-side up. Toast the sandwich on the first side and then flip it to toast the other side.

5. Too Tired to Cook Pasta

If you have Caramelized French Onion Dip and pasta, you've got dinner!

Mix the dip according to the package directions, add a little olive oil to the dip to thin it slightly, then toss it with cooked pasta. Serve it warm with a green salad or chill it for a unique twist on pasta salad.

6. (Semi)Homemade Salad Dressing

Impress your family or guests with a special salad dressing. Make Caramelized French Onion Dip according to the package directions, then add a splash of milk to make it pourable. Toss a variety of salad greens, some walnuts or almonds, a bit of feta or bleu cheese, and a handful of dried cranberries, and then top them with your "secret recipe" salad dressing.

7. Creamy French Onion Chicken and Rice

While you are preparing the chicken, cook 1 cup of brown rice in 1 cup of chicken broth and 1 cup of water until it is tender.

Slice and sauté one onion in a little olive oil until it is translucent and just beginning to turn golden. Add 1 cup of chicken broth. Season two skinless, boneless chicken breasts or four thighs; add them to the onion and broth, and cook them for 8 minutes.

Add 1/2 cup Caramelized French Onion Dip, 1/2 cup of milk, and 1 tablespoon of Italian seasoning, stirring it in thoroughly. Cook it for 4 minutes longer or until the chicken is cooked completely.

Spoon rice onto a plate and top it with the chicken. Pour the pan sauce over the top of the dish.

Want more ideas? Contact us today for more simple deli-delicious recipes and gift ideas!

 

 

The holiday season is past us, but that doesn’t mean the spirit of gift-giving has to end. The new year is sure to be filled with all sorts of birthdays, holidays, special celebrations, and reasons to be grateful. As we were all recently reminded, choosing the perfect gifts for the people in your life can be stressful, but it doesn’t have to be! Couldn't someone special on your gift list use the mood boost that comes with a sausage and cheese gift basket?

Here are a few people you may want to consider.

1. The Over-Doer

Everyone has an over-achiever in their life, that person who has their New Year’s resolutions planned out months in advance—and actually sticks to them. That person might seem to have it all together, but one thing is for sure: that person needs a break.

If you have an over-doer in your life, a gift basket with decadent sausage and delicious cheese can be just the thing for a calm moment to themselves.

2. The Party Hosts

Who consistently throws the best party of the year? Which couple makes it a priority to invite everyone over for a beautiful dinner every few months?

The party hosts are people who love good food and good conversation. They pour over recipes, comb shops for the perfect ingredients, and spend hours cooking their creations. They know and respond to everyone's dietary needs and food preferences.

If you know people like this, you know that they go out of their way to provide fantastic meals for everyone they know. They also probably get tired of cooking.

The next time you are invited to a dinner party or cocktail gathering, bring the hosts a sausage and cheese gift basket. They'll appreciate it when they are cleaning their kitchen the next day and don't even want to think about cooking.

3. The Person With Too Much Stuff

Maybe it's your friend, your brother, or even you own mom, but there is surely someone in your life who simply has too many things. The last thing you want to do is give them another mug, figurine, or sweater that is just going to take up space.

A sausage and cheese gift basket makes a great choice for this person because they can eat it, enjoy it, and even use the basket for holding odds and ends that are scattered throughout their home.

4. The Lonely Guy (or Gal)

Do you have a friend whose relatives live too far away to visit? Or maybe you know someone who was recently divorced and having to spend their birthday or a special holiday away from their kids. People who spend a lot of time alone can easily become depressed.

Bring some light into this person's life with a sausage and cheese gift basket. Then offer some time and companionship in helping them eat it.

5. That Person You Don't Know Very Well

Nothing is quite as awkward as the relationship you have with someone who you barely know but who is important enough for you to feel obligated to give a holiday gift. This could be your dad's new girlfriend, a great aunt who suddenly sent the kids sizable savings bonds, or the neighbor who cut the lawn when your leg was broken. You want to give something special, but you have no idea what the person would want.

A sausage and cheese gift basket is a great way to show appreciation for someone, even if you don't know them well. It's a lovely and thoughtful surprise that is sure to please.

Is there someone on your 2017 gift list that could use a delicious dose of specialty cheese and sausage? This simple gift could truly make someone's day. Contact us for more information and to order a basket for someone in your life.

With a brand new season of the hit TV series “The Walking Dead” upon us, nothing beats a Sunday night watch party with friends. And what better way to keep the theme of the night than with some spooky and spicy snacks to share. If you're brain-dead on what to bring to your next showing, try one or more of these creative hot sauce recipes.

Each of these recipes is made with our “Colon Blow Hot Sauce,” which is a Habanero sauce that easily lives up to its name. But for a milder snack, try any one of our delicious hot sauces. With these zombie-themed treats, your snacks will be the life of the party.

Beefy Brains

Don't worry, you're not cooking real cow brains here, but your guests won’t know by looking. This recipe will create a hot nacho dip that goes well with mini-burritos, tacos, or tortilla chips.

Start by cooking ground beef in a skillet over medium heat. Break it apart as you cook and remove from the heat after about 10 minutes, or once the meat is crumbly and brown.

Drain the grease from the skillet into an appropriate container, run the meat briefly under cold water and place it in a large saucepan. Cover your beef with our hot sauce and add any peppers you like to boost the heat index. We find that green and red peppers go best with this particular recipe.

For more taste, add some yellow mustard seeds and tomato juice. Heat the mixture on the stove until it begins to boil, and then simmer for an hour, stirring every few minutes to keep it from sticking to the bottom of the pan. Serve it in a bowl or spoon it over nacho chips with our Gringo Guacamole for the best presentation.

Hot Dog Intestines

If there's one thing that zombies love more than brains, it's intestines. Create your own delicious version with this tasty hot dog recipe.

First of all, buy linked hot dogs from a butcher and keep them connected during the preparation process. Why? So that you can better simulate the look of intestines. Boil them in hot water until they are brown and firm and then pour your sauce into a large frying pan. Use this sauce as an oil as you fry your hot dogs. This will help the sauce soak really deep into the skin of the hot dogs.

Severed Chicken Fingers

Last, but not least, is this severed chicken fingers recipe. This will give you over a pound of delicious (and hot) chicken strips that can be dipped in just about anything—from our Western Ranch to our Danish Bleu Cheese.

Start by cutting boneless chicken breast meat into three-inch-long and half-inch-wide stripes. These are the “severed fingers.” Place them in a bowl of our hot sauce and let them marinate overnight. Take them out of the fridge the next day, and mix flour, black pepper, and paprika together in a large bowl.

Mix this together with an egg and a dash of milk and then dip each chicken finger in the mix. Completely coat the chicken fingers and fry them all in hot oil. Let them cool down for a few minutes before serving. Drizzle with hot sauce for an even bloodier effect.

Any one of these recipes will make you the life of the party, but integrate all three to become the true king of “The Walking Dead.” Your friends will not only find your food delicious but will love how true each is to the show.

For more fun recipes like this, visit our blog or contact us today. We’ve gotten plenty of recipes that your friends will be dying to eat.

 

 

A gift basket is a timeless present that can be adapted to practically any occasion or person. Unfortunately, people often think of gift baskets as being generic or lacking the personal touch that makes a gift so special. But at Deli Direct, we’re here to prove that creating a thoughtful and unique gift basket isn’t just possible, it’s also simple!

So, it’s time to think out of the box—literally. When it comes to finding the simplest way to make unique gift baskets, we’ve got you covered. With our assortment of gourmet edibles and gifts, you can find a variety of great items to fill your gift basket or simply let us custom-build a basket for you!

First, there are two things to consider when creating the perfect, personalized gift basket.

  1. What is the recipient's personality? Funny or sober? Light-hearted or intense? Studious or athletic? Bookish or a video game aficionado? A dreamer or a pragmatist? Personality affects taste, so you need to know something about your recipient to put together a gift they'll really enjoy.
  2. What does he or she like? What are their hobbies? What activities do they engage in?

Now, for practice, let's take a few personality types and potential hobbies and activities and see where it takes us!

It's your best friend's birthday. He's an outgoing guy who likes to fish, play baseball, and chuck horseshoes with his kids. Let's build a gift basket.

A fishing creel is an excellent and totally different gift container. Stuff it with some small but interesting fishing gear, a baseball cap, or baseball cards of his favorite players, and a 'family fun' horseshoe set. And don’t forget about the snacks!

For an active man who likes to munch while waiting for a fish to bite, gourmet hot salami is a sure hit. Accompany it with hot pepper cheese, and if the fish don't bite, the food sure will! Up the ante with Redneck Fire in the Hole stuffed olives—whoa! You'll make his day! Sneak in Sea Salt Caramel Delight spice dip and graham crackers so he can share some of the goodies with his family.

Your mother just completed a wood-carving course and really wants to share her new skill. Congratulate her with a gift basket, something fitting for a bright, happy woman who 'goes for it.

 How about a large wood tool box or basket? Whatever you use, maintain the wood theme. Give her a few carving tools that she might not have yet. Perhaps a subscription to a woodcarver's magazine. And, obviously, goodies are a must. Tasty crackers, 95% fat-free Lite Summer Sausage, and Sun-Dried Tomato and Basil Cheese will bring a smile. If she loves cheese spread, add a yummy spread like Swiss Almond Cheese Spread. A packet of butter cookies and Chocolate S'Mores Dip will turn that smile to a laugh.

Getting the idea?

It's National Boss Day and you want to show your boss appreciation. He's a quiet man who likes to sit in his lounge chair at home, feet up, reading or watching the news. His favorite outside activity is grilling for family and friends.

 Package your gift in a sophisticated but simple basket. Toss in a couple of books by his favorite authors. Most importantly, give him something to grill like a couple New York Strip Steaks or juicy Smoked Bratwurst and Cheddar links. Don't forget the flavoring. If you go with steak, tuck in a bottle of Big Bad Bubba’s BBQ sauce, but if it's the bratwurst, nothing will do but Horseradish Mustard! Expect to get a raise.

Hopefully, you’re beginning to see how it works. Consider who it is that you’re giving your basket to, then find a unique and useful container that suits their personality, as well as the occasion. Just stuff your gift basket with goodies you know they’ll love for an all-around wonderful gift.

Looking for ready-made gift baskets or need a little extra help compiling a unique gift basket for your friend, colleague, or loved one? Contact us! At Deli Direct, we not only have a wide variety of gift baskets, but we can also work with you to design a custom gift basket for a truly unique gift.

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