Appetizers & Sides 22 November 2019

Savor the Season with Delicious, Decorative Cheese Boards

5 tips to create holiday meal centerpieces

(Family Features) A cheese board, plate or course can be a delightful way to savor the season with family and friends, bringing together a medley of tastes and textures.

This year, try serving up a board with real, quality cheeses that also set a celebratory tone with these tips from the experts at Real California Milk, representing California's dairy farm families.

Mix it up. When selecting cheeses, create a range of flavors and textures from soft to hard and mild to sharp, and even pungent varieties. Consider these examples:

  • A bloomy rind cheese such as Brie, Camembert or Formagella
  • A soft or washed-rind cheese like Teleme or Crescenza
  • A semi-firm cheese such as Gouda, St. George or toma
  • A very hard cheese such as dry jack, aged Gouda or aged white cheddar
  • A highly flavorful or pungent cheese such as blue or flavored jack

Add contrast. Flavorful breads thinly sliced or broken into smaller pieces can enhance contrast in both flavor and texture. For a simple solution, try serving breadsticks as part of this California Continental Cheese Board alongside Brie, toma and pepper jack cheeses.

Be patient (but not too patient). Aged cheeses should be allowed time to come to room temperature. Larger pieces typically take 1-2 hours for the full flavor to develop. However, fresh cheeses should be treated like milk, so don’t allow them to sit out for more than a short time.

Use simple additions. Enhance your cheese plates with olives, nuts or fruit to add flavor and texture. For example, pears go well with blue cheese, Gouda and toma; olives accompany white cheddar and pepper jack; walnuts fit with Gouda and dry jack; and dried cranberries pair nicely with cheddar, blue cheese and mushroom jack in this Red, White and Blue Cheese Board.

Consider portions. Estimate 1-1 1/2 ounces of each cheese per person. If you plan to serve three or more cheeses, consider decreasing the amount to 1 ounce (or less) of each cheese per person.

To find a variety of Real California cheeses at a store near you, visit the product locator at  realcaliforniamilk.com.

California Continental Cheese Board

Recipe courtesy of Real California Milk

  • 1-2       ounces California Brie cheese per person
  • 1-2       ounces California toma cheese per person
  • 1-2       ounces California pepper jack cheese per person
  • walnuts
  • breadsticks
  • fresh herbs
  1. On cheese plate, arrange cheeses, almonds, crackers and cherry tomatoes.

Red, White and Blue Cheese Board

Recipe courtesy of Real California Milk

  • 1-2       ounces California cheddar cheese per person
  • 1-2       ounces California blue cheese per person
  • 1-2       ounces California mushroom jack cheese per person
  • walnuts
  • dried cranberries
  • crackers
  • fresh apple slices
  1. On cheese plate, arrange cheeses, walnuts, cranberries, crackers and apple slices.

Source: Real California Milk

Videos 22 November 2019

Add Flavor to Holiday Festivities

Snacks, small bites and savory treats to feed a crowd

(Family Features) The holiday season brings gatherings, get-togethers and parties of all kinds, meaning dishes that can feed a crowd are all too important for successful entertaining. From appetizers to snacks to desserts, recipes that come together quickly mean more moments with loved ones.

For example, these dairy-fueled recipes from Milk Means More pack plenty of festive flavor for feeding family and friends without keeping you cooped up in the kitchen. Appetizers and snacks such as Holiday Baked Brie, Roasted Garlic-Whipped Feta Crostini and Cheese Buds help hold over hungry guests until the main course is served, while Peppermint Shortbread Cookies make for a perfect way to cap off the night.

Find more recipes for holiday gatherings at milkmeansmore.org.

Watch video to see how to make this recipe!

Peppermint Shortbread Cookies

Recipe courtesy of Rachel Gurk of “Rachel Cooks” on behalf of Milk Means More
Prep time: 15 minutes, plus 30 minutes freeze time
Cook time: 15 minutes
Servings: 40

  • 2-2 1/2             sticks unsalted butter, softened
  • 3/4       cup powdered sugar
  • 1          teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1          teaspoon salt
  • 2 1/3    cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4       cup peppermint crunch baking chips
  1. In stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment, cream butter, powdered sugar, vanilla and salt until smooth. Gradually add flour and mix on low until combined. Add baking chips and continue mixing on low until fully combined.
  2. On wax paper or parchment paper, form dough into 12-14-inch log and freeze at least 30 minutes, or until firm.
  3. Heat oven to 350° F.
  4. Cut shortbread dough into 1/4-inch slices; bake 13-15 minutes on parchment-lined baking sheets.

Holiday Baked Brie

Recipe courtesy of Lori Yates of “Foxes Love Lemons” on behalf of Milk Means More
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 14 minutes
Servings: 8

  • 2          tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 8          ounces button mushrooms, sliced
  • kosher salt
  • ground black pepper
  • 1          brie round (8 ounces)
  • 3          tablespoons honey
  • 1/4       cup pomegranate arils
  • 1/4       cup shelled pistachios
  • crackers or toasted bread, for serving
  1. Heat oven to 350° F. In large skillet, heat butter over medium-high heat. Add mushrooms; cook 8-10 minutes, or until deep golden brown, stirring frequently. Season with salt and pepper; remove from heat.
  2. Place brie on parchment-lined rimmed baking pan; drizzle with honey. Transfer to oven and bake 5-7 minutes, or until inside of cheese is softened but outside remains intact.
  3. Transfer brie to serving platter; top with pomegranate arils, pistachios and mushrooms. Serve with crackers or bread.

Cheese Buds

Recipe courtesy of Sheila Johnson of “Eat 2 Gather” on behalf of Milk Means More
Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 15 minutes, plus 1 hour chill time
Servings: 12

  • 1          cup cake flour or all-purpose flour
  • 1          cup grated extra-sharp white cheddar cheese
  • 1/2       cup unsalted butter, cold and cut into chunks
  • 1          teaspoon coarse sea salt
  • 1/8       teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 40        pecan halves
  • 1          egg white, whisked with 1 teaspoon cold water
  • smoked paprika
  1. Heat oven to 350° F. Line baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Add flour, cheese, butter chunks, salt and cayenne pepper to food processor. Process until ingredients form into ball, about 1 minute.
  3. Remove dough from food processor, wrap with plastic wrap and press into flat round. Place in refrigerator 1 hour.
  4. Dust counter with flour and roll out dough to 1/4-inch thick. Using 1-inch round cookie cutter, cut out rounds and place on parchment paper-lined baking sheets.
  5. Place one pecan on top of each round. Using pastry brush, lightly paint each cracker with egg wash. Sprinkle with smoked paprika.
  6. Bake 12-15 minutes, or until buds just start to brown around bottom edges.
  7. Remove from oven to cooling rack. Store in airtight container up to 1 week or freeze 1 month.

Note: Cheese buds can be made plain without pecans, or pecans can be chopped and sprinkled on after egg wash and smoked paprika.

Roasted Garlic-Whipped Feta Crostini

Recipe courtesy of Liz Della Croce of “The Lemon Bowl” on behalf of Milk Means More
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 10 minutes
Servings: 16

  • 1          bulb garlic (about 12 cloves)
  • 4          tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 1          teaspoon salt, divided
  • 1          teaspoon pepper, divided
  • 32        slices baguette
  • 8          ounces feta cheese
  • 1/2       cup whole milk
  • 2          tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1/2       cup pomegranate seeds
  • 1/4       cup parsley, minced
  1. Heat oven to 400° F.
  2. Slice garlic bulb in half, exposing garlic heads; place in center of large piece of foil. Drizzle each half with 1 tablespoon olive oil, 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Wrap foil tightly around garlic and roast until caramelized, about 30 minutes.
  3. Place baguette slices on large baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil. Bake on middle rack until golden brown, about 10 minutes; set aside.
  4. Place feta cheese, milk, lemon juice, remaining salt and remaining pepper in high-speed food processor. Once garlic finishes roasting, add garlic cloves to food processor. Pulse until whipped and creamy, adding more milk as needed to reach desired consistency. Adjust seasonings, to taste, if necessary.
  5. To serve, spread each crostini with whipped feta and sprinkle with pomegranate seeds and minced parsley.

Source: United Dairy Industry of Michigan

Meal Ideas 23 August 2019

Friday Night is Pizza Night

Just look at that Cheese and Sausage Tomato Pie. Sizzling sausage, melting mellow cheeses, tangy tomato and crispy, crunchy crust. Homemade pizza: the perfect way to end the work and school week.

Making your own pizza dough is a snap. Flour, yeast, water and oil mix together quickly. The dough rests for 10 minutes then you’re ready to roll.

Make individual pizzas like My Own Pizza with similar savory toppings. Try hearty Sausage-Pepper Calzones, and instead of leftover pizza, go for easy-to-make Sausage Breakfast Pizza, hot from the oven.

CONT GEN calzone detail image embed3

Sausage-Pepper Calzones

Yield: 6 calzones

Dough:

  • 2-2 1/4             cups Pillsbury Best All-Purpose Flour, divided
  • 1/4       cup cornmeal
  • 1          envelope Fleischmann’s RapidRise Yeast
  • 3/4       teaspoon salt
  • 1          cup hot water (120-130 F)
  • 1          tablespoon olive oil

Sausage-Pepper Filling:

  • 1          package Jimmy Dean Fresh Sausage
  • 1 1/2    cups sliced bell pepper
  • 1          medium onion, sliced
  • 2          cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 1/2    cups shredded Wisconsin mozzarella cheese
  • 1          cup shredded Wisconsin provolone cheese
  • olive oil
  • 1          teaspoon crushed red pepper (optional)
  1. To make dough: In large bowl, combine 1 cup flour, cornmeal, undissolved yeast and salt. Stir water and oil into flour mixture. Stir in enough remaining flour to make soft dough. Knead on lightly floured surface until smooth and elastic, about 8-10 minutes. Cover; let rest 10 minutes.
  2. Heat oven to 400° F.
  3. To make Sausage-Pepper Filling: In skillet, cook sausage over medium-high heat until browned, stirring to crumble. Add bell pepper, onion and garlic; cook until tender, about 5-10 minutes, stirring frequently. Let cool. Stir in cheeses.
  4.  Divide dough into six equal pieces; roll each into 8-inch circle. Place about 1 cup Sausage-Pepper Filling on one half of each circle; moisten edges.
  5. Fold dough over filling; press with tines of fork to seal. Place on greased baking sheet. With sharp knife, make three 1-inch slits across top of each calzone. Brush top with olive oil. If desired, sprinkle with crushed red pepper.
  6. Bake 20-25 minutes, or until done. Serve warm.

CONT GEN my pizza detail image embed4

My Own Pizza

Yield: 16 individual pizzas

Dough:

  • 5 1/2-6             cups Pillsbury Best All-Purpose Flour, divided
  • 2          envelopes Fleischmann’s RapidRise Yeast
  • 1 1/2    teaspoons salt
  • 2          cups hot water (120-130 F)
  • 1/4       cup olive oil
  • 1 1/2    cups prepared pizza sauce
  • 1          package Jimmy Dean Fresh Sausage, cooked, crumbled and drained
  • sliced olives
  • tomatoes
  • peppers
  • 1          cup shredded Wisconsin mozzarella cheese
  • 1          cup shredded Wisconsin cheddar cheese
  1. In large bowl, combine 2 cups flour, undissolved yeast and salt. Gradually stir water and olive oil into flour mixture. Stir in enough remaining flour to make soft dough. Knead on lightly floured surface until smooth and elastic, about 8-10 minutes. Cover; let rest 10 minutes.
  2. Heat oven to 400° F.
  3. On lightly floured surface, divide dough into 16 pieces. Form into smooth balls; roll into 7-inch circles. Place on greased baking sheets. Top with pizza sauce, sausage and vegetables.
  4. Sprinkle with cheeses.
  5. Bake 20-25 minutes or until golden. Serve warm.

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Cheese and Sausage Tomato Pie

Yield: 1 (12-inch) pizza

Dough:

  • 2 1/2-3             cups Pillsbury Best All-Purpose Flour, divided
  • 1          tablespoon sugar
  • 1          envelope Fleischmann’s RapidRise Yeast
  • 1 1/2    teaspoons salt
  • 1          cup hot water (120-130 F)
  • 3          tablespoons peanut oil, divided
  • 1          package Jimmy Dean Fresh Sausage Regular Flavor, cooked, crumbled and drained
  • 1 1/2    cups shredded Wisconsin mozzarella cheese
  • 1/2       cup shredded Wisconsin cheddar cheese
  • 1/2       cup shredded Wisconsin parmesan cheese
  • tomatoes (optional)
  • peppers (optional)
  • mushrooms (optional)
  • 1 1/4    cups prepared pizza sauce
  1. In large bowl, combine 1 cup flour, sugar, undissolved yeast and salt. Gradually add water and 2 tablespoons peanut oil to flour mixture.
  2. Using electric mixer, beat 2 minutes at medium speed, scraping bowl occasionally. Stir in enough remaining flour to make soft dough. Knead on lightly floured surface until smooth and elastic, about 8-10 minutes. Cover; let rest 10 minutes.
  3. Heat oven to 450° F.
  4. Roll dough into 12-inch circle; place on greased 12-inch pizza pan or baking sheet. Form standing rim by pinching edges of dough; prick dough randomly with fork. Let rest 10 minutes. Bake 5 minutes. Remove from pan; place on wire cooling rack.
  5. Brush crust surface with remaining peanut oil; spread pizza sauce evenly on crust. Sprinkle with sausage; top with cheeses; add toppings as desired. Bake 10 minutes, or until crust is golden. Cut into wedges and serve immediately.

CONT GEN breakfast pizza image embed1

Sausage Breakfast Pizza

Yield: 1 (12-inch) pizza

Dough:

  • 2 1/2-3             cups Pillsbury Best All-Purpose Flour, divided
  • 1          tablespoon sugar
  • 1          envelope Fleischmann’s RapidRise Yeast
  • 1 1/2    teaspoons salt
  • 1          cup hot water (120-130 F)
  • 3          tablespoons peanut oil, divided
  • 1          package Jimmy Dean Fresh Sausage Regular Flavor, cooked, crumbled and drained
  • 1          cup frozen hash brown potatoes, thawed
  • 1          small bell pepper, seeded and diced
  • 1          cup shredded Wisconsin sharp cheddar cheese
  • 2          eggs, beaten
  • 1          tablespoon milk
  • 1/4       teaspoon salt
  • 1/4       teaspoon pepper
  • 2          tablespoons shredded Wisconsin parmesan cheese
  1. In large bowl, combine 1 cup flour, sugar, undissolved yeast and salt. Gradually add water and 2 tablespoons peanut oil to flour mixture.
  2. Using electric mixer, beat 2 minutes at medium speed, scraping bowl occasionally. Stir in enough remaining flour to make soft dough. Knead on lightly floured surface until smooth and elastic, about 8-10 minutes. Cover; let rest 10 minutes.
  3. Heat oven to 450° F.
  4. Roll dough to 12-inch circle; place on greased 12-inch pizza pan or baking sheet. Form standing rim by pinching edges of dough; prick dough randomly with fork. Let rest 10 minutes. Bake 5 minutes. Remove from pan; place on wire cooling rack.
  5. Reset oven to 375° F. Return cooled crust to 12-inch pizza pan or baking sheet. Sprinkle sausage, potatoes, bell pepper and cheese over crust.
  6. In bowl, combine eggs, milk and seasonings; pour evenly over top.
  7. Bake 25-30 minutes, or until eggs are set.
  8. Sprinkle with cheese and serve.

 

Photos courtesy of Getty Images

Breakfast & Brunch 09 August 2019

School Day Solutions

Family-friendly recipes for breakfast, lunch and dinner

(Family Features) Morning routines, homework, practices and more are all part of back-to-school season, and even when time is short, flavorful meals can be, too.

Whether it’s breakfast and dinner together as a family or sending your little learner out the door with a nutritious lunch, making tasty recipes in your own kitchen doesn’t have to be a drain on an already busy schedule. With dishes like a new take on French toast to a quickly packed lunchbox and bolder burgers, you can keep your loved ones fueled for everything the school year brings your way.

For more back-to-school recipes, visit Culinary.net.

Freshen Up Family Breakfasts

A truly beneficial start to the day is usually centered around breakfast. Start your family on the right foot with a meal that delivers sweet flavor along with nutritious fruits.

This Honey Leches French Toast recipe swaps out syrup for hot honey combined with the crisp taste of raspberries, blueberries and strawberries.

Visit honey.com for more family-friendly recipes.

Honey Leches French Toast

Recipe courtesy of chef Rob Corliss on behalf of the National Honey Board
Servings: 4

Honey Leches:

  • 2          tablespoons blueberry honey
  • 1/4       cup evaporated milk
  • 1/4       cup light coconut milk
  • 3          large eggs
  • 1          teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2       teaspoon ground cinnamon

Berry Garnish:

  • 1/2       cup fresh raspberries
  • 1/2       cup fresh blueberries
  • 1/2       cup fresh strawberries, sliced

Hot Honey:

  • 1/2       cup blueberry honey
  • 1/2       teaspoon cayenne pepper

Pound Cake:

  • 8          small slices premade pound cake
  • nonstick cooking spray
  1. To make Honey Leches: In mixing bowl, whisk blueberry honey, evaporated milk, coconut milk, eggs, vanilla extract and cinnamon to evenly combine. Keep chilled.
  2. To make Berry Garnish: In mixing bowl, lightly toss raspberries, blueberries and strawberries to evenly combine. Keep chilled.
  3. To make Hot Honey: In small mixing bowl, whisk blueberry honey and cayenne pepper to evenly combine. Keep warm so hot honey is pourable.
  4. Heat electric griddle to 375° F.
  5. Arrange pound cake slices, side by side, flat, in casserole dish or pan with sides. Pour Honey Leches over and around pound cake slices; soak 1 minute.
  6. Lightly coat griddle with nonstick cooking spray. Remove pound cake slices from Honey Leches, allowing liquid to drain off, then place each slice on hot griddle.
  7. On griddle, cook pound cake slices approximately 2 minutes on each side until golden crispy and hot throughout.
  8. To serve, place two overlapping pound cake slices on plate (four plates total). Top each with approximately 1/4 cup mixed berries then drizzle each with approximately 2 tablespoons hot honey.

A Healthy, Happy Midday Meal

Back to school means back to packing daily lunches, and for parents aspiring to send healthier options with their children, look no further than a bento box loaded with the nutritional values of fruits, dairy and protein.

Surprise your little one with this Happy Lunchbox, a sweet treat to help keep him or her hydrated throughout the school day. Start with watermelon, a portable, versatile and easy-to-serve staple composed of 92% water for a hydrating snack. Add in a favorite yogurt flavor, mixed berries, cheddar cheese cubes and smoked turkey breast for a well-rounded lunch to maintain energy all day.

By assembling this nutritious meal using a divided bento box, you can add a little fun to an already flavorful lunch. Find more refreshing recipes for back-to-school season at watermelon.org.

Happy Lunchbox

Recipe courtesy of the National Watermelon Promotion Board

  • Watermelon, cut into sticks
  • yogurt, for dipping berries

Watermelon Kebabs:

  • 18        cubes (1 inch each) seedless watermelon
  • 6          cubes smoked turkey breast
  • 6          cubes cheddar cheese
  • 6          coffee stirrers or beverage straws
  1. In small plate with dividers, assemble watermelon sticks with yogurt in one section and berries in separate section.
  2. To make Watermelon Kebabs: Skewer watermelon, turkey and cheese cubes on stirrers or straws. Assemble in third section of plate.

A Bigger, Bolder Burger

Making a meal everyone loves can sometimes be a challenge when tastes differ and each member of the family craves something different. However, turning to a nearly universally enjoyed staple – a burger – may be just the solution.

Next time your group debates the night’s dinner menu, turn to a customizable creation like the Brooklyn Bacon Bonanza Burger created by celebrity chef and author George Duran for Jarlsberg’s Global Burger Campaign. Topped with melted cheese and optional garnishes like fried eggs and tomato slices, this burger can be personalized to appease the taste buds of everyone under your roof.

Find more back-to-school meal solutions at jarlsberg.com.

Brooklyn Bacon Bonanza Burger

Recipe courtesy of chef George Duran on behalf of Jarlsberg
Servings: 4

  • 4          thick chunks Jarlsberg cheese
  • 1          tablespoon hot sauce
  • 1/4       cup mayonnaise
  • 1          pound ground beef
  • 1/2       pound ground pork
  • 1          onion, finely chopped (about 1 cup)
  • 1          cup chopped cooked bacon
  • 3          tablespoons sundried tomato paste
  • 3          tablespoons breadcrumbs
  • kosher salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • nonstick cooking spray
  • 4          eggs for frying (optional)
  • 4          hamburger buns
  • 8          thin slices tomato
  1. Place cheese in freezer about 1 hour ahead of time.
  2. Heat grill to medium-high heat. In small bowl, mix hot sauce and mayonnaise; set aside.
  3. In large bowl, season beef, pork, onion, bacon, tomato paste and breadcrumbs with salt and pepper. Using hands, mix until well combined.
  4. Using hands, form meat mixture into four balls. With thumb, make indentation in centers of balls and place one chunk cheese in center of each. Begin shaping burgers around cheese until patties form.
  5. Spray grill grates with nonstick spray. Grill burgers, turning frequently, until cooked through and cheese begins to ooze out, about 8-10 minutes.
  6. In nonstick skillet, fry eggs, if desired; set aside. Serve burgers on hamburger buns with chipotle-mayo, tomato slices and fried eggs.

Photo courtesy of Getty Images (French toast)

Source:  National Watermelon Promotion Board

Videos 29 April 2019

Blended Tacos

(Family Features) Creating a nutritious family dinner doesn’t have to mean sacrificing favorite dishes. For a healthier take on a traditional ethnic meal, these Blended Tacos involve blending ground beef with mushrooms before adding your desired toppings. Find more recipes at Culinary.net.

Watch video to see how to make this recipe!

Blended Tacos

Recipe courtesy of the Mushroom Council
Yield: 12 tacos

  • 1          teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/4       teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4       teaspoon onion powder
  • 1          teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1          teaspoon salt
  • 1/2       cup water
  • 1          teaspoon vegetable oil
  • 1          pound button mushrooms, finely chopped
  • 1          pound 80 percent lean ground beef
  • 12        crunchy taco shells, warmed
  • 2          cups grated cheddar cheese (optional)
  • 1          large tomatoes, diced (optional)
  • 1          head iceberg lettuce, shredded (optional)
  1. In small bowl, mix chili powder, garlic powder, onion powder, cumin and salt. Stir in water and set aside.
  2. In large skillet over medium-high heat, heat oil. Add chopped mushrooms and ground beef and cook thoroughly, about 7-10 minutes. Carefully drain excess grease, if necessary.
  3. Add seasoning mixture to mushroom-meat mixture and stir to combine. Bring to simmer and cook 3-5 minutes.
  4. To assemble, add about 1/4 cup mushroom-meat mixture to bottom of each taco shell. Layer shells with cheese, tomatoes and lettuce, if desired.

Source: Culinary.net

Breakfast & Brunch 11 April 2019

Put Breakfast on the Table All Day Long

(Family Features) While everyone knows that breakfast is the most important meal, eating the same dishes over and over again can turn the meal that fuels the rest of your day into a lackluster one at best. From pancakes and waffles to eggs on toast, even these tried-and-true classics can wear out their welcome on your kitchen table.

Mixing up your meals – and adding in breakfast favorites such as bacon – is the perfect way to make any dish better, no matter what time of day you choose to put breakfast on the table.

Full of flavor, Farmland Hickory Smoked Bacon is hand-trimmed, slow smoked and available in several varieties, so any meal from brunch to dinner can delight your taste buds.

Switch things up with a quick and easy breakfast pizza, or put a new twist on a traditional breakfast sandwich by replacing the standard biscuit or muffin that holds it all together with a doughnut – both recipes are sure to be a hit for breakfast, lunch, brunch or dinner.

For more ideas to put breakfast-inspired meals on the table all day long, bacon lovers can visit farmlandbaconclub.com to find original videos, contests, giveaways and extreme bacon recipes.

Bacon Doughnut Breakfast Sandwich

4 sandwiches

  • 4 slices Farmland Hickory Smoked Thick Cut Bacon
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 4 cups baby spinach (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 4 eggs
  • 4 glazed doughnuts
  • 4 slices real cheddar cheese
  1. Fry bacon for 10 minutes, until outside is crispy and brown.
  2. In large, deep skillet over medium-high heat, heat olive oil and saute spinach until wilted. Set aside.
  3. In another large skillet, melt butter over medium-high heat until melted. Carefully crack eggs into skillet and fry until yolk is done.
  4. Assemble sandwiches as follows: doughnut bottom, spinach, egg, slice of cheese, bacon, doughnut top.

Bacon and Egg Breakfast Pizza

Makes 1 pizza

  • 1 package (16 ounces) Farmland Hickory Smoked Bacon
  • 1 can (10 ounces) refrigerated pizza crust dough
  • 2 cups frozen hash brown potatoes with onions and peppers, partially thawed
  • 1/4 cup chopped green bell pepper
  • 4 eggs
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 cup (4 ounces) shredded cheddar cheese
  1. Heat oven to 425° F.
  2. Cook bacon according to package directions; drain.
  3. Press crust into lightly greased 14-inch pizza pan, forming 1/2-inch rim. Bake 5 minutes.
  4. Arrange potatoes, bacon and green pepper over crust. Whisk together eggs, milk, salt and pepper; pour over pizza.
  5. Sprinkle with cheese. Bake for 11-13 minutes or until golden brown and eggs are set.

Source: Farmland Foods

Holiday 10 April 2019

Celebrate Cinco de Mayo with a Festive Fiesta

(Family Features) For Mexican food lovers everywhere, Cinco de Mayo provides the perfect excuse to host a fiesta. This year, try spicing up your party menu with Mexican-inspired bold flavors and fresh ingredients using these tips and recipe. With a little planning and some key fresh ingredients, you can host a fiesta everyone will enjoy.

Cinco de Mayo Menu Planning
Here are a few authentic dips and dishes to liven any party spread:

  • Green, Green Guacamole - This flavorful dip embodies the festive flavors of the holiday. To make fresh guacamole, add green onions, cilantro and Tabasco green jalapeño pepper sauce to ripe, mashed avocados.
  • Mexican Caviar - Not your average salsa dip, this hearty and zesty recipe combines black beans, corn, avocado, tomatoes and cilantro for a muy bueno party starter that is sure to please.
  • Spicy Taquitos - Packed with genuine flavor, these savory appetizers can be served all year long. A satisfying blend of chicken, red beans and shredded cheese is rolled into buttery phyllo dough and baked until golden and crispy.

To add more authentic flavor to your table, be sure to serve Fiery Fiesta Empanadas. With a soft cornmeal crust, ground beef, cheese and olive filling, this dish boasts bold notes of cumin, garlic, and mild Tabasco green jalapeño pepper sauce - making these empanadas a sure-fire way to spice up your menu.

For more sizzling, south-of-the-border recipes, visit www.tabasco.com.

Fiery Fiesta Empanadas

Makes 4 empanadas

Cornmeal Crust

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup yellow cornmeal
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) butter or margarine, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 6 tablespoons water

Filling

  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1 clove garlic, crushed
  • 3 scallions, chopped
  • 1/4 cup taco sauce
  • 1/4 cup pitted ripe olives, chopped
  • 4 teaspoons Tabasco green jalapeño pepper sauce, divided
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano leaves
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup shredded Cheddar or Monterey Jack cheese
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  1. Combine flour, cornmeal and salt in medium bowl. Cut in butter until mixture is crumbly. Sprinkle in water, 1 tablespoon at a time, until dough sticks together.
  2. On lightly floured surface with lightly floured rolling pin, roll out half of dough until 1/4-inch thick. Cut dough into two 7-inch rounds. Repeat with remaining dough and scraps. Cover; set aside.
  3. Cook ground beef and garlic in 12-inch skillet over medium-high heat until beef is browned on all sides, stirring occasionally to break up beef.
  4. Stir in scallions, taco sauce, olives, 3 teaspoons green jalapeño pepper sauce, oregano, cumin and salt until well blended. Stir in cheese.
  5. Preheat oven to 375ºF. Grease large cookie sheet. Spoon about 1/2-cup filling on 1/2 of each round, leaving a 1/2-inch border.
  6. Stir together egg and remaining teaspoon green jalapeño pepper sauce.
  7. Brush border with egg mixture.
  8. Fold dough over filling, pressing out air. Crimp edges with fork or fingers to seal.
  9. Place on baking sheet. Bake 25 minutes or until golden.

Source: Tabasco

Holiday 09 April 2019

Celebrate Cinco de Mayo

(Family Features) This Cinco de Mayo, make sure you're prepared to celebrate the Mexican victory over the French at the Battle of Puebla on May 5, 1862. Gather your family on this festive day to enjoy music, dancing and, of course, great Mexican food.

As you're getting ready for this year's fiesta, keep Mama Ortega in mind. Maria Conception Jacinta Dominguez Ortega, otherwise known as Mama Ortega, raised a family of 13 children with homemade Mexican meals every night. One hundred fifty years later her traditions still live on with great Mexican foods from Ortega.

Make some of your own family traditions with great recipes such as Pasta and Grilled Vegetable Salad with Cilantro Dressing, Taco Casserole or, perhaps, a Frozen Margarita Pie. From tasty whole kernel corn taco shells and delicious salsas to authentic taco sauces and diced green chiles, Ortega offers a wide variety of Mexican food products to meet all of your family's needs.

To get some new ideas on Cinco de Mayo recipes and valuable coupons, visit www.ortega.com.

Taco Casserole

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Start to Finish: 30 minutes
Makes: 8 servings

  • 1 pound lean ground beef
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 1 bottle (8 ounces) Ortega Taco Sauce
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1 can (4 ounces) Ortega Fire-Roasted Diced Green Chiles
  • 1 packet (1.25 ounces) Ortega 40% Less Sodium Taco Seasoning Mix
  • 1 package (12-count) Ortega Whole Grain Corn Taco Shells, broken, divided
  • 2 cups (8 ounces) shredded cheddar cheese, divided
  • Chopped tomatoes, chopped green bell pepper, sour cream
  1. Preheat oven to 375°F. Grease 11 x 7-inch baking dish.
  2. Cook beef and onion in large skillet over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until beef is browned. Drain and discard excess fat.
  3. Stir in taco sauce, water, chiles and seasoning mix; bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low. Cook 3 to 4 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  4. Layer half of broken taco shells on bottom of prepared baking dish. Cover with half of meat mixture; sprinkle with 1 cup cheese.
    Repeat layers with remaining ingredients.
  5. Bake 20 to 25 minutes or until bubbly and cheese is melted. Serve with desired toppings.

Pasta and Grilled Vegetable Salad with Cilantro Dressing

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Start to Finish: 30 minutes
Makes: 6 to 8 servings

Dressing

  • 1 can (4 ounces) Ortega Fire-Roasted Diced Green Chiles
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon Regina red wine vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon Polaner minced garlic
  • Salt and black pepper, to taste

Salad

  • 1 red bell pepper, cored, seeded, cut in half
  • 1 green bell pepper, cored, seeded, cut in half
  • 1 medium zucchini, cut lengthwise into thin slices
  • 1 medium yellow squash, cut lengthwise into thin slices
  • 1 large red onion, cut into 1/2-inch-thick wedges
  • 1 pound pasta shells or penne, cooked
  • 1 jar (16 ounces) salsa
  • 1/4 cup firmly packed fresh basil, cut into thin strips
  • Lettuce leaves (optional)
  1. Combine chiles, cilantro, oil, vinegar and garlic in small bowl. Whisk until well blended. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Set aside.
  2. Preheat grill to medium-high heat, about 15 minutes. Lightly brush grill grid with vegetable oil.
  3. Grill bell peppers, zucchini, squash and onion 3 to 5 minutes per side or until fork-tender. Remove vegetables from grill: cut into bite-size pieces.
  4. Toss cooked pasta, salsa, sliced vegetables and basil in large bowl or serving platter. Serve with dressing on lettuce leaves, if desired.

Frozen Margarita Pie

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Start to Finish: 4 hours
Makes: 8 servings

Crust

  • 10 Ortega Yellow Corn Taco Shells
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar

Filling

  • 1 can (14 ounces) sweetened condensed milk
  • 1/3 cup frozen limeade, thawed
  • 2 tablespoons orange juice
  • 1 drop green food coloring
  • 1 cup whipping cream
  • Lime curls (optional)
  1. Place taco shells in food processor and pulse until evenly ground.
  2. Melt butter in medium saucepan over low heat. Remove from heat. Stir in taco crumbs and sugar until well blended. Press firmly over bottom and up sides of 9-inch pie plate.
  3. Place in freezer until firm.
  4. Combine sweetened condensed milk, limeade, orange juice and food coloring in large mixing bowl.
  5. Whip cream until soft peaks form. Fold whipped cream gently into condensed milk mixture until blended. Pour onto prepared crust.
  6. Freeze uncovered, 4 hours or until firm. Let stand 10 minutes before serving. Garnish with lime curls, if desired.

Tip: To crush taco shells without a food processor, place them in a resealable plastic food storage bag and run a rolling pin over the shells until they're evenly crushed.

Source: Ortega

Holiday 09 April 2019

A Fiesta of Flavor!

(Family Features) This Cinco de Mayo, gather the whole family together and enjoy a true Mexican fiesta like Mama Ortega would have thrown over 100 years ago. With mariachi music, dancing, piñatas and traditional homemade Mexican meals, Mama's fiestas were always a favorite with family, friends and especially her 13 children!

The flavors and smells of Mama's homemade meals still taste great today, but are easier to create - and more fun to eat! Her legendary meals inspired today's convenient and great tasting Ortega Mexican products. Achieve authentic fiesta flavors by using crisp and crunchy Ortega taco shells made with whole kernel corn, topped with slow simmered Ortega Taco Sauce and authentic fire-roasted green chiles. Ortega's zesty Mexican seasonings and fresh-tasting salsas are perfect for adding flavor to your favorite snack, casserole, dip or soup!

So, gather the family together and enjoy a fiesta of flavors with Ortega. For other great recipe ideas or to learn more about Ortega's line of products, visit www.ortega.com.

Taco Rice and Beans

Prep time: 5 minutes
Start to finish: 15 minutes
Serves 4

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1 package (1.25 ounces) Ortega Taco Seasoning Mix
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 can (15 ounces) black beans, drained
  • 2 cups cooked rice
  • 1/4 cup Ortega Thick & Chunky Salsa
  1. In skillet, heat oil over medium heat. Add onion; cook 3 minutes. Add taco seasoning mix and water. Stir until combined and slightly thickened. Add beans, rice and salsa; stir. Cook 5 minutes more or until contents are heated through.

Grilled Margarita Shrimp

Prep time: 40 minutes
Start to finish: 50 minutes
Serves 6

  • 1 cup margarita mix
  • 1 cup Ortega Taco Sauce, divided
  • 2 pounds raw shrimp (21 to 30), peeled and deveined
  • 3 tablespoons Ortega Diced Green Chiles
  1. In large bowl, pour margarita mix and 1/2 cup taco sauce over shrimp and toss well. Marinate in refrigerator 30 minutes or up to 2 hours.
  2. Preheat grill until sizzling hot, about 15 minutes. Grill shrimp 4 minutes on each side or until pink.
  3. Combine remaining 1/2 cup taco sauce with green chiles to use as dipping sauce.

Ham and Cheese Quesadillas

Prep time: 10 minutes
Start to finish: 20 minutes
Serves 5

  • 1/2 pound cooked ham, diced
  • 3/4 cup cream cheese, softened
  • Zest of one lime
  • 2 green onions, white and green parts, diced
  • 1 Ortega Soft Taco Kit - includes 10 soft tortillas, 1 package (1.25 ounces) taco seasoning mix and 1 package (3 ounces) taco sauce
  • Cooking spray
  • 1 tomato, diced
  • 1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  1. In mixing bowl, combine diced ham, cream cheese, lime zest, green onions and half of taco seasoning packet contained in soft taco kit. Heat large skillet on medium and spray with cooking spray.
  2. Spread about 1 teaspoon taco sauce onto a flour tortilla and then spread about 1/4 cup ham/cream cheese mixture on top.
  3. Place tortilla-side down onto hot skillet and top with another flour tortilla. Heat about 4 minutes, until bottom of tortilla is browned; spray top of the other tortilla and flip. Cook another 4 minutes and repeat with remaining quesadillas. Cook two at a time if skillet is large enough.
  4. Cut into wedges and top with tomato, cilantro and sour cream and serve.

Mexican Meatballs

Prep time: 15 minutes
Start to finish: 30 minutes
Makes about 30 meatballs

  • 3 Ortega Yellow Corn Taco Shells
  • 1 pound (16 ounces) lean ground beef
  • 1 teaspoon Ortega Chili Seasoning Mix
  • 1 egg
  • 2 teaspoons Ortega Diced Green Chiles
  • 1 bottle (8 ounces) Ortega Taco Sauce
  • 1/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • Cilantro, finely chopped (optional)
  1. Break taco shells into food processor and pulse several times to create about 1/2 cup taco shell crumbs. Place into large mixing bowl and add ground beef, seasoning mix, egg and green chiles. Mix thoroughly.
  2. Form mixture into 30 (1-inch) meatballs and drop into hot skillet. Cook until they begin to brown. Carefully turn over and continue browning. Add taco sauce. Coat meatballs with sauce and simmer over low heat, uncovered, 10 minutes.
  3. Sprinkle meatballs with cheese and garnish with cilantro, if desired. Serve with toothpicks.

Photos copyright (c) 2008 Publications International, Ltd. Used by permission.

Source: Ortega

Videos 08 April 2019

How to Make Jalapeño Popper Cups

(Family Features) Savor each bite of light and flaky crust filled with a creamy mixture of jalapeños and bacon in these Jalapeño Popper Cups.

For more appetizer recipes, visit culinary.net.

Watch video to see how to make this delicious recipe!

Jalapeño Popper Cups

  • 8              strips bacon, chopped
  • 4              medium jalapeño peppers, seeded and minced
  • 2              teaspoons minced garlic
  • 2              packages (8 ounces each) cream cheese
  • 1/2         cup sour cream
  • 1              cup shredded cheddar cheese, divided
  • 1              package frozen phyllo dough sheets
  • 2              tablespoons fresh cilantro, chopped
  1. Heat oven 375°F.
  2. In medium skillet over medium-high heat, cook bacon until crisp. Drain bacon; reserve 1 tablespoon grease.
  3. Add jalapeño peppers and minced garlic to bacon grease. Cook until peppers are tender.
  4. In large bowl, beat cream cheese and sour cream until smooth. Stir in bacon, jalapeño mix and 2/3 cup shredded cheese.
  5. Gently fold one pastry sheet in half. Fold in top corners to middle, forming point. Fold bottom corners to middle, forming point. Place phyllo dough in muffin pan cavity, forming cup.
  6. Fill phyllo cups with cream cheese mixture. Sprinkle remaining cheddar cheese over cups.
  7. Bake 7-8 minutes or until heated through. Remove from pan and sprinkle with cilantro.

Recipe adapted from Wilton.

Source: Culinary.net

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