Meal Ideas 18 May 2020

Breaking Bread

(Family Features) As families spend more time at home, Americans are finding comfort in a surprising source: bread. In fact, a 20-year trend of declining grain food consumption has been reversed.

A national study by the Grain Food Foundation suggests that the turnaround is more than a one-time sales blip due to pantry loading. In reality, consumers count bread among their top comfort foods. The study revealed one-third of Americans named pasta and bread as foods that are comforting during a stressful time.

In addition to the comforting flavor, this trend provides valuable nutritional benefits. As a part of many healthy eating plans, bread and pasta are nutritionist approved and provide nutrients needed for healthy aging such as B vitamins, magnesium, selenium, iron, folate and fiber.

“For years, we’ve been telling consumers that grain foods are the foods we love that love us back,” said Christine Cochran, executive director of the Grain Foods Foundation. “The stress has given us permission to enjoy bread and pasta again, but unlike most comfort foods, consumers recognize that grains have nutritional value.”

The highest-ranking comfort foods were ice cream; baked goods like cakes, cookies and pastries; salty snacks; candy; and fast food. However, when asked to identify comfort foods with nutritional advantages, consumers identified bread and pasta as the top two.

Beyond identifying comfort foods and their nutritional value, consumers also expressed worry that bread is in short supply right now.

“We can all rest assured that there is enough supply of grain food products in this country,” Cochran said. “Shoppers may be experiencing some sporadic unavailability of certain high-demand items. However, manufacturers are working closely with retailers to make sure that out-of-stocks are short lived. Consumers will be able to buy their favorite grain-food products and eat them, too.”

To learn more about the role of grain foods in a healthful diet, visit GrainFoodsFoundation.org.

Avocado Veggie Sandwich

Recipe courtesy of the Grain Foods Foundation
Prep time: 10 minutes
Servings: 2

  • 1/2       ripe avocado, peeled
  • 1          tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1/8       teaspoon salt
  • 4          slices bread
  • 4          slices tomato
  • 8          slices cucumber
  • 12        slices sweet bell pepper
  • 2          tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 2          lettuce leaves
  1. In small bowl, combine avocado, lemon juice and salt. Spread mixture evenly over two bread slices.
  2. Place tomatoes, cucumber and peppers on covered surface. Drizzle with vinegar.
  3. Layer lettuce, tomato, cucumbers and peppers evenly between slices of bread, creating two sandwiches.

Panzanella Bagel Salad

Recipe courtesy of Sylvia Melendez-Klinger, MS, RD, on behalf of the Grain Foods Foundation
Prep time: 5 minutes
Servings: 6

  • 2          medium Roma tomatoes, seeded and diced
  • 1 1/4    cups canned diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 1/4       cup green bell pepper, diced
  • 1/4       cup cucumber, peeled, seeded and diced
  • 2          tablespoons red onion, diced
  • 2          tablespoons Parmesan cheese, grated, plus additional (optional)
  • 1          tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 2          tablespoons fresh basil, chopped
  • 2          bagels (4 ounces each) cut into 2-inch pieces, toasted
  • assorted greens (optional)

In medium bowl, mix tomatoes, canned tomatoes with juice, green pepper, cucumber, onion, cheese, vinegar and basil.

Add toasted bagel pieces; toss gently. Marinate, covered, in refrigerator 1 hour. Serve within 1 hour after marinating. Sprinkle with additional cheese and serve on bed of assorted greens, if desired.

Rotini with Sausage and Mushrooms

Recipe courtesy of Sylvia Melendez-Klinger, MS, RD, on behalf of the Grain Foods Foundation
Prep time: 18 minutes
Servings: 8

  • 1          box (13 1/4 ounces) whole-grain rotini
  • 1          tablespoon olive or vegetable oil
  • 1          pound chicken sausage, sliced
  • 1          cup leeks, thinly sliced
  • 1          cup green onions, thinly sliced
  • 2          cups mushrooms, sliced
  • 1          cup chicken stock
  • 1/4       cup parsley chopped
  • 6          leaves from tarragon sprigs, chopped
  • 1          cup Romano cheese grated
  • Parmesan-Romano cheese (optional)
  1. Prepare rotini according to package directions. Drain and transfer to large bowl.
  2. In large skillet, heat oil over medium heat. Cook sausage 2-3 minutes, or until well browned. Add leeks, onions and mushrooms; cook until tender. Add chicken stock and simmer 3-5 minutes, or until hot. Fold sausage mixture into warm pasta. Add parsley, tarragon and Romano cheese; toss again. Top with Parmesan-Romano cheese, if desired.

Cheesy Black Bean Toast with Pico de Gallo

Recipe courtesy of Sylvia Melendez-Klinger, MS, RD, on behalf of the Grain Foods Foundation
Prep time: 15 minutes
Servings: 4

  • 6          Roma tomatoes, diced
  • 1⁄2       medium onion, finely chopped
  • 1          clove garlic, finely minced
  • 2          serrano or jalapeno peppers, finely chopped
  • 3          tablespoons fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 1          lime, juice only
  • 1⁄8       teaspoon oregano, finely crushed
  • 1⁄8       teaspoon salt (optional)
  • 1⁄8       teaspoon pepper
  • 1⁄2       Hass avocado, diced
  • 4          bolillos (6 inches) or large Kaiser rolls, sliced in half lengthwise
  • 1          can (16 ounces) seasoned low-fat refried black beans
  • 2          cups shredded Chihuahua or mozzarella cheese
  1. Heat oven to 350 F.
  2. In medium mixing bowl, combine tomatoes; onion; garlic; peppers; cilantro; lime juice; oregano; salt, if desired; pepper; and avocado; set aside.
  3. On medium platter, split rolls. With medium spatula, spread refried beans onto each bread half; sprinkle cheese among bread.
  4. Bake 5-8 minutes, or until cheese is melted and hot.

Source:  Grain Foods Foundation

Meal Ideas 10 April 2020

Nutritious Eating at Home

(Family Features) If spending additional time in the comfort of your home has you rethinking the family menu and looking for new ways to enjoy nutritional meals, rest assured you can make better-for-you food choices without losing mouthwatering taste.

Easy, efficient at-home recipes like Thai Coconut Lime Freezer Chicken, Burrito Beef and Cauli Mac and Cheese can all be made in less than an hour while reducing the intake of carbs and unnecessary sugars. All are part of a balanced Atkins low-carb lifestyle, a long-term, healthy eating approach focused on high-fiber carbohydrates, optimal protein and healthy fats.

The eating approach, which is a more flexible version of the popular ketogenic diet, offers a balanced mix of foods containing fiber-rich and nutrient-dense carbohydrates while focusing on reduced levels of refined carbohydrates, added sugars and the “hidden sugar effect” – when carbohydrates convert to sugar when digested. You don’t see the sugar, but your body does.

Introducing your family to smarter food choices can also support your immunity. According to research published in “The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition,” simply substituting whole grains for refined grains has a modest effect on gut microbiota and immunity. Refined grains have had most of the fiber milled out of them, leaving a refined carbohydrate that impacts your body the way sugar would. Opt for whole grains to get the fiber you need, along with protein and healthy fats.

Visit atkins.com for more nutritious recipes


Thai Coconut Lime Freezer Chicken

Prep time: 8 minutes
Cook time: 22 minutes
Servings: 4

  • 1 3/4    cups coconut milk
  • 2          tablespoons basil
  • 1          tablespoon xylitol (sugar substitute)
  • 1          ounce cilantro
  • 1          ounce fresh lime juice
  • 1/2       teaspoon salt
  • 1/2       teaspoon garlic
  • 1          teaspoon lime zest (optional)
  • 20        ounces boneless, cooked chicken breast
  • 20        ounces broccoli flower clusters
  1. In bowl, mix coconut milk, basil, xylitol, cilantro, lime juice, salt and garlic. For more citrus flavor, add lime zest, if desired.
  2. Add chicken, broccoli and sauce to 1-gallon zip-top freezer bag. Squeeze out any air and seal bag. Freeze bag flat up to 1 month.
  3. To cook: Thaw in refrigerator overnight. Heat oven to 350° F.
  4. Place in glass 8-by-8-inch pan and bake 20-25 minutes.

Burrito Beef

Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 8 hours
Servings: 6

  • 2          pounds beef arm chuck roast
  • 4          tablespoons green taco sauce
  • 1          teaspoon minced garlic
  • 2          large scallions or spring onions, chopped
  • 1          jalapeno pepper, diced
  • 2          teaspoons chili powder
  • 1/2       teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2       teaspoon salt
  1. Trim fat from beef. In slow cooker on low heat, cook beef, taco sauce, garlic, onions, jalapeno, chili powder, cumin and salt 8 hours, or until beef is tender.
  2. Using two forks, remove beef and shred. Mix beef with 1/2 cup cooking juices before serving.
  3. A Low-Sugar Swap to Satisfy Cravings
  4. While spending more time at home than normal, those snack cravings can be hard to shake. Rather than relying on easy-to-grab eats from the pantry or freezer, focus on more nutritious choices that don’t sacrifice flavor.
  5. Turn to a creamy solution to satisfy your hunger such as the Atkins Milk Chocolate Delight Shake, a filling option for chocolate lovers. The drinks are packed with 15 grams of protein, 5 grams of fiber, 20% of the daily recommended amount of vitamin D and 1 gram of sugar to keep you going throughout the day.

Cauli Mac and Cheese

Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 40 minutes
Servings: 6

  • Nonstick cooking spray
  • 1          teaspoon salt, divided
  • 1          head large (6-7-inch diameter) cauliflower
  • 1          cup heavy cream
  • 2          ounces cream cheese
  • 1 1/2    teaspoons ground mustard
  • 1 1/2    cups shredded cheddar cheese, divided
  • 1          clove garlic, minced
  • 1/4       teaspoon white pepper
  • 1/4       teaspoon pepper sauce
  1. Heat oven to 375° F and prepare 9-by-9-inch baking dish with nonstick cooking spray. Heat large pot of water to boiling and add 1/2 teaspoon salt.
  2. Remove stem and leaves from cauliflower. Cut into small pieces and place in boiling water; cook until crisp-tender; about 5 minutes. Drain well then pat between paper towels to remove moisture.
  3. In medium saucepan over medium heat, bring cream to simmer. Whisk cream cheese and powdered mustard into simmering cream until smooth. Add 1 cup cheddar cheese, garlic, remaining salt, white pepper and pepper sauce, whisking until cheese melts; about 1-2 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in cauliflower.
  4. Pour into baking dish and top with remaining cheese. Bake 15 minutes until browned and bubbly.

 

Photos courtesy of Getty Images (Thai Coconut Lime Freezer Chicken, Burrito Beef and Cauli Mac and Cheese)

Source: Atkins

Meal Ideas 27 October 2017

Holiday Recipes Packed with Flavor and Crunch

(Family Features) The holiday season can be full of special occasions that bring friends and family together around the dining room table. While certain classic dishes may be expected, adding new recipes to your holiday menu can keep even the traditionalists reaching for seconds.

A staple of any holiday dinner is the tried-and-true green bean casserole. Tender green beans immersed in a creamy mushroom sauce that are then topped with a crunchy layer of classic French’s Fried Onions to complete the dish. These flavorful and crunchy onions can be the star ingredient of many of your holiday recipes.

The green bean casserole recipe may be an expected part of the holiday dinner spread, but you can add other sides to bring a new twist to this year’s meal. A fun way to start is a macaroni and cheese recipe with a twist to spice up the dinner table.

Mix French’s Crispy Jalapenos into your favorite mac and cheese recipe to kick the spice and crunch up a notch. Made with real jalapenos, the addition creates a flavor explosion of cheesy goodness paired with just the right amount of spice to become a new family favorite.

For more holiday recipe inspiration, visit Frenchs.com/Friendsgiving.

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Crunchy Jalapeno Mac and Cheese

  • 8          ramekins (4 ounces each), greased
  • 1          box (7 1/2 ounces) macaroni and cheese
  • 1/2       cup milk, divided
  • 1/2       teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2       teaspoon paprika
  • 1          cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1 1/2    cups shredded Italian cheese blend, divided
  • 1          cup French’s Crispy Jalapenos
  1. Heat oven to 350° F. Place ramekins on baking sheet.
  2. Cook macaroni and cheese, according to package instructions.
  3. Stir in 1/4 cup milk, chili powder and paprika while macaroni is still hot. Add cheddar cheese and 1 cup Italian cheese blend and continue to stir, over low heat, until melted.
  4. Remove from heat and mix in 1/2 cup of crispy jalapenos.
  5. Fill ramekins topping with remaining Italian cheese blend and crispy jalapenos. Bake 10 minutes.

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Green Bean Casserole

  • 1          can (10 1/2 ounces) cream of mushroom soup
  • 3/4       cup milk
  • 1/8       teaspoon black pepper
  • 4          cups cooked cut green beans
  • 1 1/3    cups French's Crispy Fried Onions, divided
  1. Heat oven to 350° F.
  2. In 1 1/2-quart baking dish, mix soup, milk and pepper. Stir in beans and 2/3 cup onions.
  3. Bake 30 minutes, or until hot. Stir.
  4. Top with remaining onions. Bake 5 minutes until onions are golden.

Substitution: Use 2 cans (14 1/2 ounces each) green beans, drained, in place of 4 cups cooked cut green beans.

Source: French’s

Ethnic 03 April 2017

The Taste of Mexico

(Family Features) What’s a fiesta without the authentic taste of Mexico? From chili enchilada sauce to crushed tomatillos, authentic Mexican foods are an important part of Mexican culture and celebrations. And, why not? They’re fun, flavorful and nutritious.

With the convenience of today’s authentic Mexican foods such as Las Palmas, you can serve up fast and flavorful meals for your entire family in just minutes. Try an old favorite like Mexican Pozole and add Las Palmas Enchilada Sauce for an extra rich and flavorful taste. Or offer your family zesty Chicken Enchiladas stuffed with shredded boneless chicken and smothered in Las Palmas Enchilada Sauce. And for something fun, offer Chilaquiles with layers of tortillas, Las Palmas Enchilada Sauce and cheese topped with jalapeños, sour cream and avocado .

Today, Las Palmas is one of the largest selling Mexican cooking sauces in the United States. While it has grown from its humble beginnings, it still remains authentic to its roots, using only the highest quality chiles and other fresh ingredients. Las Palmas offers a wide variety of Mexican cooking sauces including Red and Green Chili Enchilada Sauce, Red Chile Sauce and Hot Enchilada Sauce plus other Mexican cooking staples such as Green Chiles and Crushed Tomatillos.

For any celebration, from Mexican Independence Day to Las Posadas, celebrate Mexican culture, food, family and friends with Las Palmas. For more information, visit bgfoods.com.

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Chicken Enchiladas

Zesty enchilada sauce and diced green chiles give these chicken enchiladas their kick. Serve them with Mexican rice and spicy black beans.

Serves 4
Preparation time: 15 minutes
Cooking time: 30 minutes

  • 2 cans (10 ounces each) Las Palmas Enchilada Sauce, divided
  • 2 cups cooked, shredded boneless, skinless chicken breast meat
  • 1 cup Mexican blend or Monterey Jack cheese, divided
  • 1 can (4 ounces) diced green chiles, drained
  • 8 (6-inch) corn tortillas, warmed
  1. PREHEAT oven to 350°F. Grease 11- by 7-inch baking dish.
  2. SPREAD 1/2 cup enchilada sauce on bottom of prepared baking dish. Combine chicken, 1/2 cup enchilada sauce, 1/2 cup cheese and chiles in medium bowl. Spoon chicken mixture evenly down center of each tortilla; roll up. Place seam-side down in baking dish. Top with remaining enchilada sauce and cheese.
  3. BAKE 15 to 20 minutes or until heated through and cheese is melted.
    Top with sour cream and chives, if desired.

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Mexican Pozole

Pozole is a staple of Mexican cuisine. It’s a pork and hominy dish rich in spiciness and flavor and a favorite at any Mexican fiesta.\

Serves 6
Preparation time: 15 minutes
Cooking time: 75 minutes

  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 2 pounds pork shoulder, trimmed of fat and cut into bite-size pieces
  • 3 medium onions, chopped
  • 8 cloves large garlic, finely chopped
  • 4 cups water
  • 1 can (29 ounces) Mexican-style hominy, drained
  • 2 cans (10 ounces each) Las Palmas Enchilada Sauce
  • 1 can (7 ounces) diced green chiles
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano, crushed
  • 1/2 cup chopped cilantro
  • Tortilla pieces
  1. HEAT oil in stockpot; add pork, onions and garlic. Cook, stirring frequently, for 12 to 14 minutes or until pork is cooked through. Stir in water, hominy, enchilada sauce, chiles and oregano; bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium; cook, stirring occasionally, 40 to 45 minutes or until pork is tender and stew thickens slightly. Top with cilantro and tortilla pieces before serving.

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Chilaquiles

Layer upon layer of tortilla chips, salsa and grated cheese go into this mouthwatering chilaquiles. Jalapeños, sour cream and avocado finish this dish with zest and cooling creaminess.

Serves 8

Preparation time: 20 minutes
Cooking time: 15 minutes

  • Vegetable oil
  • 12 (6-inch) corn tortillas, cut into 1-inch strips
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 1 jar (16 ounces) salsa — thick & chunky
  • 1 can (10 ounces) Las Palmas Enchilada Sauce
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded Monterey Jack or mild cheddar cheese
  • 1/4 cup sliced pickled jalapeños
  • 1 cup sour cream (optional)
  • 2 avocados, pitted and sliced
  1. PREHEAT oven to 350ºF.
  2. POUR vegetable oil to 1-inch depth in medium skillet; heat over high heat 3 to 4 minutes. Place tortilla strips in oil; fry, turning frequently with tongs, until light golden brown. Remove from skillet; place on paper towels to drain.
  3. REMOVE all but 1 tablespoon oil from skillet. Add onion; cook, stirring occasionally, 1 to 2 minutes or until tender. Stir in salsa and enchilada sauce. Bring to boil. Reduce heat to low; cook, stirring frequently, 3 to 4 minutes.
  4. LAYER half of tortilla strips in ungreased 13- by 9-inch baking dish. Top with half of salsa mixture and half of cheese; repeat layers. Bake 10 to 15 minutes or until cheese is melted. Top with jalapeños, sour cream and avocado just before serving.

NOTE: Frying step may be eliminated by using tortilla chips or breaking taco or tostada shells into small pieces and using them in place of tortilla strips for a quick and easy alternative.

Source: Las Palmas

Grilling-Tailgating 05 December 2016

Crowd-Pleasing Game Day Grilling

(Family Features) For millions of football fans, the grill is as important as the gridiron when enjoying a weekend of games. There’s nothing like team spirit, the anticipation of kickoff and the smell of a delicious pregame tailgate wafting through the stadium parking lot.

National barbecue expert Rocky Stubblefield of Stubb’s Legendary Bar-B-Q offers tips and recipes for game day grilling that will have the whole crowd cheering.

Keep it simple

Stubblefield says anything that cooks fast on the grill is great for tailgating – burgers, hotdogs, chicken – and to bring on the flavor without having to pack a carload of ingredients, use sauces, rubs and marinades. Prepare as much food as you can ahead of time and have a checklist for the things you always need but are easy to forget, like napkins and tin foil.

Grilling tips

For perfectly shaped, evenly cooked burgers, make a thumbprint in the middle of each patty before grilling. Amp up the flavor by rubbing your burgers with Stubb’s Bar-B-Q rub before putting them on the grill – just like you would a brisket or ribs. No matter what you’re making, wait to put the sauce on until the very end of grilling to avoid charring and burning.

For dozens of easy, delicious tailgating recipes, visit stubbsbbq.com.

13420 burger

Toasted Pecan Burgers

  • 1 pound ground chuck
  • 1/4 cup chopped red onion
  • 1/4 cup chopped pecans, toasted
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped green bell pepper
  • 3 tablespoons Stubb’s Original Bar-B-Q Sauce
  • 2 tablespoons Stubb’s Bar-B-Q Spice Rub
  1. Mix together chuck, onion, pecans, bell pepper, sauce and rub. Shape into 4 patties.
  2. Prepare grill for direct cooking. When coals are ashed over in charcoal grill, spread them in bottom of grill so food can cook directly over coals.
  3. Grill burgers over direct, medium heat, first on one side then the other, 7-10 minutes, until they reach desired doneness. Medium burgers register an internal temperature of 160° F.
  4. Serve with your favorite burger toppings on toasted buns.

13420 jalepeno bites

Smokey Stuffed Jalapenos with Bacon

  • 1/2 pound uncooked chorizo
  • 16 ounces cream cheese
  • 24 fresh jalapenos, halved and seeded
  • 24 slices bacon (about 2 pounds), halved
  • 1 cup Stubb’s Smokey Mesquite Bar-B-Q Sauce
  1. Heat skillet to medium heat and prepare grill for direct cooking.
  2. Remove chorizo casing and cook in skillet over medium heat until cooked through. Transfer cooked chorizo to paper towel-lined plate to drain and cool.
  3. Mix cream cheese and chorizo.
  4. Stuff each jalapeno half with cream cheese mixture. Wrap with half strip of bacon and secure with toothpick.
  5. Place peppers on grill and cook 8-10 minutes, turning frequently. Baste peppers with sauce during last 2 minutes of cooking.

Source: Stubb's Legendary Bar-B-Q

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