Easy travel recipes packed with Wisconsin cheese

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WAUSAU, Wis., (WSAW)-- When someone else is hosting dinner, there's often the question of "What can I bring?" Offer to share one of these recipes starring Wisconsin cheese.

Broccoli and Cauliflower with Bread Crumbs and Romano

Whether it’s a cheeseboard to keep hungry mouths at bay while the bird is cooking, a side dish or a dessert, we have it covered! These recipes not only taste amazing but travel well, too! There’s always a spot at the table for Wisconsin specialty cheese.

Slow Cooker Cheddar and Chive Mashed Potatoes

3 pounds Yukon gold potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes
1 cup water
1/2 package (4 ounces) Crystal Farms Original Cream Cheese, cut into small cubes
4 tablespoons butter, cut into small cubes
8 ounces Hook's One Year Sharp Cheddar cheese, shredded and divided (2 cups)
1/4 cup half-and-half cream, warmed
2 tablespoons minced fresh chives
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon coarsely ground pepper

Place potatoes in 3-quart slow cooker. Pour in water. Dot with cream cheese and butter. Cover and cook on high for 4-5 hours or on low for 8-9 hours until potatoes are tender. Transfer all ingredients from slow cooker to a large bowl; mash potato mixture until smooth. Stir in 1 cup cheddar, cream, chives, salt and pepper. Return potatoes to a lightly greased slow cooker. Sprinkle with remaining cheddar. Cover and cook on high until cheese is melted, about 10-15 minutes. Serve immediately, or use warm setting to keep potatoes warm for up to 4 hours.

Recipe Tip:
Any brand of aged or sharp Wisconsin cheddar can be used.
If traveling with this dish, sprinkle with the remaining cheddar before transporting. Upon arrival, finish cooking the potatoes until the cheese is melted, about 10-15 minutes.

Cheesemonger Tip:
Hook's One Year Sharp Cheddar has a nice flavor; it's a little sharper than a medium cheddar. After cooking, the aged cheddar gives a rich, cheesy flavor to the potatoes.

Broccoli and Cauliflower with Bread Crumbs and Romano

4 tablespoons olive oil
2 garlic cloves, minced
4 tablespoons butter, cubed
1 cup Panko bread crumbs
Salt and pepper to taste
1 head broccoli, cut into florets
1 head cauliflower, cut into florets
4 ounces Weyauwega Star Dairy Romano cheese, shredded (1 cup)

Warm olive oil in a skillet over medium-low heat. Add garlic; cook and stir just until fragrant, about 1 minute. Pour oil-garlic mixture into small bowl; set aside. Melt butter in the same skillet over medium heat. Add bread crumbs; season with salt and pepper to taste. Cook and stir until bread crumbs are lightly toasted. Transfer to a small bowl. Place broccoli and cauliflower in a steamer basket. Place basket in a large saucepan over 1 inch of water; bring to a boil. Cover and steam for 4-6 minutes or until crisp-tender. Drain hot water from saucepan. Return vegetables to saucepan. Pour oil-garlic mixture over top; gently toss to coat. Sprinkle with bread crumb mixture and romano; gently toss. Serve immediately.

Recipe Tip:
Any brand of Wisconsin romano cheese can be used.

Cheesemonger Tip:
Wisconsin cheesemakers make romano with slightly more fat and a sharper, more assertive taste than parmesan cheese. Romano is also a delicious pairing with apples, pears, tomatoes, olives and pepperoncini.