Breakfast & Brunch 17 August 2020

Eggs are Recommended as a Nutrient-Rich 'First Food'

(Family Features) Eggs are for everyone, including babies and toddlers, according to the 2020 Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee that released its Scientific Report outlining nutritional recommendations for Americans. For the first time, this committee, comprised of leading doctors and nutrition scientists, included nutritional guidance for younger children.

The committee recommends eggs as a first food for babies and toddlers since they provide eight essential nutrients that can help build a healthy foundation for life at a time when every bite counts.

Eggs provide nutrition for children and moms-to-be, as well. However, the report found most pregnant women and kids need more choline – an essential nutrient critical for brain health – in their diets.

According to research published in the “Journal of the American College of Nutrition,” 92% of pregnant women do not get enough choline in their diets. Choosing foods high in choline, like eggs, can help pregnant women consume enough of this essential nutrient, helping a baby’s brain and spinal cord develop properly. Just two eggs provide more than half of the recommended daily amount of choline.

At only 70 calories, one egg contains 6 grams of high-quality protein and all nine essential amino acids. Eggs are also a source of vitamin B12, biotin (B7), iodine, selenium, high-quality protein, riboflavin (B2) and pantothenic acid (B5). Additionally, eggs contain lutein and zeaxanthin that can help protect your eyes from harmful blue light that comes from electronic devices.

Lots of parents worry about possible food allergies in their little ones. The committee recommends introducing eggs when your baby is ready for first foods, which may help reduce the chances of developing an egg allergy.

In Your Kitchen

Eggs are a nutritional powerhouse that contribute to health and well-being at every age, and there are plenty of ways to enjoy eggs beyond the basic boiled, scrambled or sunny-side-up. In fact, eggs work well in meals all day long. Toss hard-boiled eggs in a salad, top a sweet potato with an egg for lunch or try a spinach and mushroom frittata for dinner.

Baby-friendly Savory Egg Veggie Pancakes pack in nutrients from whatever vegetables you have on hand and offer a savory twist on classic pancakes. You can add extra toppings like avocado or Greek yogurt for a variety of new textures and flavors.

Another simple way to introduce eggs as a first food is a soft and fluffy egg casserole. You can also incorporate veggies for some added nutrition, since eggs can help you better absorb the nutrients found in vegetables, such as vitamin E and carotenoids like lutein and zeaxanthin.

You can adapt a Veggie Egg Casserole to your child's development and motor skills by cutting small squares or making a simple mash.

Find more kid-friendly recipes and advice about introducing eggs to your youngest family members at EggNutritionCenter.org.

Veggie Egg Casserole

Recipe developed by Stacey Mattinson, RD
Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 40 minutes
Servings: 4

  •             Nonstick cooking spray
  • 1/2       sweet onion
  • 1          red, yellow or orange bell pepper
  • 1          head broccoli florets
  • 2          teaspoons canola, avocado or olive oil
  • 1          dozen eggs
  • 2          cups low-fat cottage cheese
  • 1          cup shredded cheese
  • 1          teaspoon baking powder
  • 1          tablespoon flour
  • salt, to taste
  • pepper, to taste
  1. Preheat oven to 350 F. Grease 9-by-13-inch pan with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. Chop onion and bell pepper to age-appropriate sizes. Pick apart broccoli florets into small pieces and remove most of stems.
  3. Heat medium-sized frying pan over medium heat. Add oil and swirl around pan. Add onions and cook 3-4 minutes until they start to soften. Add broccoli and bell pepper. Mix with onions and add salt and pepper, to taste. Cook 1-2 minutes then cover with lid to steam another 2-3 minutes until broccoli is bright green. Remove veggies from stovetop.
  4. In large mixing bowl, beat eggs. Add cottage cheese, shredded cheese, baking powder and flour. Add veggies and salt and pepper, to taste. Transfer to prepared pan and bake 40 minutes.

Savory Egg Veggie Pancakes

Recipe developed by Min Kwon, RD
Prep time: 5 minutes
Cook time: 10 minutes
Servings: 1

  • 1/2        teaspoon oil or butter
  • 1           egg
  • 1           tablespoon milk or breastmilk
  • 3           tablespoons cooked or raw vegetables, chopped or grated
  • 1           tablespoon flour
  • 1           teaspoon ground flaxseeds
  • 1/4        teaspoon herbs or spices, such as cinnamon, curry powder, cumin, oregano, turmeric, etc.
  1. In 6-inch nonstick pan, heat butter or oil over medium-low heat, tilting pan to coat bottom.
  2. In bowl, beat egg and milk until blended. Add vegetables, flour, flaxseeds and herbs; stir to combine. Pour mixture into heated pan, spread evenly (don’t stir) and cook batter 1 minute, or until bottom starts to set.
  3. Flip and cook other side until lightly browned. Remove from pan. Once cooled, slice into desired shapes and serve.

Source: American Egg Board

Meal Ideas 12 December 2019

Winter Warm-Up

Recipes and Tips Rooted in Goodness

(Family Features) When cold weather hits, it’s natural to seek comfort in a variety of forms: warm blankets, layers of sweaters and delicious, hearty meals. Winter is the perfect season for spending time indoors honing cooking skills to take your culinary creations to the next level.

Opt for Seasonal Produce

While the days of peaches and watermelons may be over, dropping temperatures bring a slew of seasonal produce made for cool-weather cooking. Think winter squash, apples, root vegetables and cauliflower. Try using a seasonal food guide to learn what produce is in season in any state at any time of the year. Cooking with seasonal produce helps ensure your food is in peak form at its most nutritional and flavorful state.

Find more winter recipes at farmtoforksauce.com

Simple Recipes for Shorter Days

With less daylight hours during the winter, many people tend to get sleepy earlier. Quick weeknight dinner recipes are usually ideal, especially when they take only 30 minutes or so to prepare. Easy dishes are perfect for those nights when you want something savory and delicious, but you also want to get into pajamas and onto the nearest couch as soon as possible. Few things are better than a warm bowl full of flavor like this taste-tempting curry recipe bursting with caramelized onion and roasted garlic notes.

Chickpea, Spinach and Coconut Curry

Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 12 minutes
Servings: 6

  • 2          tablespoons olive oil
  • 1          tablespoon ginger, freshly grated
  • 3          cloves garlic, minced
  • 1          large yellow onion, chopped
  • 1          tablespoon turmeric
  • 2          teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1/2       teaspoon crushed red pepper, plus additional, to taste
  • 1          can (29 ounces) chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1          jar (24 ounces) FarmToFork Caramelized Onion & Roasted Garlic Sauce
  • 1          can (15 ounces) light coconut milk
  • 4          cups baby spinach
  • 1/2       cup non-fat plain Greek yogurt, stirred
  • 1/2       cup cilantro, coarsely chopped
  • 2          naan flatbreads, toasted and sliced
  1. In large skillet over medium heat, heat olive oil, ginger, garlic, onions, turmeric, salt and 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper. Cook 6-8 minutes, or until onions begin to brown, stirring frequently. Add chickpeas, sauce and coconut milk; cook 3-4 minutes, or until heated through. Add spinach; cover with lid. Simmer 3-4 minutes, or until spinach is wilted. Mix well.
  2. Spoon mixture into six serving bowls and top each with spoonful of yogurt, pinch of cilantro and additional crushed red pepper, to taste. Serve with flatbread slices.

The Perks of Passive Cooking

Wintry weekends call for warming meals that bring an extra sensation of coziness through the wafting aroma of slow-cooked dishes. Wintertime is the perfect season to break out your slow cooker or put your stove on low heat and let fragrant dishes such as Savory Harissa-Roasted Chicken and Vegetables simmer slowly and fill your home with enticing smells.

Savory Harissa-Roasted Chicken and Vegetables

Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 50 minutes
Servings: 6

  • 1/3       cup harissa paste, divided
  • 1/3       cup olive oil, divided
  • 1          large red onion, cut into 1/2-inch thick slivers
  • 1          small head cauliflower, cut into small florets
  • 1          jar (24 ounces) FarmToFork Marinara Sauce, divided
  • 1/2       teaspoon ground cumin
  • 3/4       teaspoon kosher salt, divided
  • 3/4       teaspoon ground black pepper, divided
  • 6          bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs (about 2 pounds)
  • 1          pound rainbow carrots, trimmed and peeled
  • 1          lemon, juice only, divided
  • 1/4       cup finely chopped fresh herbs such as dill, mint or cilantro, divided
  • 1 1/2    cups plain Greek yogurt
  1. Heat oven to 425° F. In large bowl, whisk 2 tablespoons harissa and 2 tablespoons oil. Add onions and cauliflower; toss to combine. Spread vegetable mixture in single layer on 17-by-12-inch foil-lined rimmed baking sheet.
  2. In same bowl, whisk remaining harissa, 2 tablespoons oil, 1 cup marinara sauce, cumin, 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Add chicken; toss with tongs until well coated. Arrange chicken atop vegetables on baking sheet. Bake 50-55 minutes, or until chicken is deep golden brown and internal temperature reaches 165° F.
  3. Use vegetable peeler to create long ribbons of carrots. In bowl, toss carrots with 1 tablespoon lemon juice, 2 tablespoons chopped herbs and remaining oil, salt and pepper. In separate bowl, mix yogurt, remaining lemon juice and remaining herbs.
  4. Serve each chicken thigh with roasted vegetables, dollop of herbed yogurt, carrot mixture and 1/4 cup warmed marinara sauce.

Find Comfort in Your Favorite Foods

Almost nothing beats pasta and sauce on a chilly night. When craving warm and filling meals during winter, a quality, jarred pasta sauce like FarmToFork can add simple goodness to hearty dishes like Gnocchi with Hearty Mushroom Bolognese. Made with sustainably grown, vine-ripened tomatoes and fresh garlic, basil and onions, the sauce brings rich, distinctive flavor to a variety of cool-weather favorites from traditional pasta recipes to soups and oven bakes. During the season of giving, comfort and warmth can also be found in doing good for others, which is why FarmToFork supports Big Green, a national nonprofit organization that partners with low-income schools around the country to bring garden-based learning and food literacy curriculums to children.

Gnocchi with Hearty Mushroom Bolognese

Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 25 minutes
Servings: 6

  • 1          yellow onion, coarsely chopped
  • 1          carrot, coarsely chopped
  • 2          ribs celery, coarsely chopped
  • 2          cloves garlic
  • 3          tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 1/2    teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1/2       teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2          pounds button, cremini or portobello mushrooms
  • 1          jar (24 ounces) FarmToFork Marinara Sauce
  • 3          tablespoons butter
  • 1          pound refrigerated or frozen gnocchi
  • 1/2       cup pecorino Romano cheese, grated
  • 1/4       cup Italian parsley, coarsely chopped
  1. In food processor, pulse onions, carrots, celery and garlic until finely chopped. In large pot over medium-high heat, heat olive oil. Add chopped vegetables, salt and pepper. Cook 10 minutes, or until softened, stirring occasionally.
  2. In food processor, pulse mushrooms until coarsely chopped. Add to large pot with vegetables. Cook 10-12 minutes, or until most liquid is evaporated, stirring occasionally. Stir in marinara sauce and butter.
  3. Cook gnocchi according to package directions; drain. Add to sauce mixture; mix gently. Sprinkle with cheese and parsley.

Source:  FarmToFork

Tips 08 November 2019

5 Tips to Encourage Picky Eaters

(Culinary.net) Feeding an entire family can be difficult enough on its own with busy evenings full of hustle and bustle. One additional factor that can cause even more headaches is dealing with a picky eater, especially a child whose preferred menu ranges from hot dogs to candy.

If you’re looking to widen the palate of your picky eater (or eaters), consider these tips to start down a path toward a more expansive slate of family meals.

Start Slow
Loading up your little ones’ plates with steamed veggies and sauteed fish may be a surefire way to send them to the pantry for a less nutritious snack. Instead, try combining personal favorites with small portions of foods you’d like to introduce, such as chicken nuggets alongside green beans or topping pizza with black olives.

Don’t Force It
While it can be frustrating to constantly hear “no” to fruits and veggies, forcing them upon children may turn them away for good. In addition, a struggle over eating certain foods may create a constant sense of frustration around mealtime, which may only decrease a child’s desire to expand his or her horizons.

Create a Fun Experience
Remember not every meal has to include something new. On occasion, mix up mealtime by serving your children’s favorites, even if it’s as simple as a hamburger or as creative as breakfast for dinner.

Bring Your Sidekicks to the Store
Introducing your children to the place your family’s food comes from may help them feel more comfortable with new flavors. Plus, by letting them in on the shopping process, you can have some help choosing foods they’re more likely to be willing to try.  

Let Children Help Cook
Much like choosing their own ingredients increases the likelihood they’ll try something new, perhaps becoming part of the cooking process can help children see how a meal comes together. It doesn’t have to be a gourmet experience – simply seasoning roasted asparagus with salt and olive oil, for example, can introduce your up-and-coming chefs to the kitchen while helping make the cooking (and eating) process a fun adventure.

For more food tips and kid-friendly recipes, visit Culinary.net.

 

Photo courtesy of Getty Images

Meal Ideas 19 August 2019

5 Steps to Grill Vegetables

Burgers, brats, steak, chicken, pork chops and all the flavors of fresh meat get all the love on the grill, but a well-rounded meal calls for sides and veggies.

Before you plan your next backyard barbecue, incorporate tasty vegetables – peppers, asparagus, onions, tomatoes, zucchini and more – for an all-out blitz of fresh-grilled flavor. Consider these simple steps to properly grill your crispy veggies:

  1. Light the grill. Step one, of course, is to prep a hot grill. For the best cooking experience, you’ll want medium-high heat or even high heat for quick, direct grilling. By lighting the grill ahead of veggie prep, you’ll allow plenty of heating time to complete your other tasks.
  2. Prepare vegetables. Depending on what you plan to cook, there’ll likely be some preparation to undertake, such as cutting off stems and blemishes or removing pits and seeds. In addition to cleaning up your ingredients, you may want to chop, dice or slice based on the recipe.
  3. Coat vegetables with olive oil. Drizzling just a small amount of olive oil over your vegetables and tossing to coat adds a couple benefits. First, it helps the outer layer crisp rather than dry out, plus it aids in seasonings – like salt and pepper – sticking to the vegetable instead of falling off while on the grill or in a pan.
  4. Consider using foil packets or skewers. If char marks aren’t your thing, tossing chopped or diced veggies into a foil packet before hitting the grill steams them for a bit of a softer texture. Alternately, wooden skewers soaked in water (to prevent burning) can help keep smaller chunks of veggies from slipping through the grill grates while still achieving a crispy exterior.
  5. Pay attention to grill times. Different types of vegetables and preparation methods call for different cook times, but 5-10 minutes over direct heat generally gets the job done. The smaller you chunk, chop, slice or dice, the less time it’ll take.

Find more grilling tips at Culinary.net.

 

Photo courtesy of Getty Images

Meal Ideas 23 May 2019

Celebrating Salad

(Family Features) With a variety of fruits and veggies available in every color of the rainbow and ingredients packed with protein and fiber, it’s easy to create a unique salad. In fact, there are more than 15 million ways to create a one-of-a-kind salad at Souplantation and Sweet Tomatoes’ 50-foot salad bars. In honor of National Salad Month, consider these fun facts and learn more at souplantation.com.

Source: Sweet Tomatoes/Souplantation

Meal Ideas 19 February 2019

Delightful Farm-Raised Foods

(Family Features) Putting fresh, clean meals on the table is easy with fruits, vegetables and other farm-raised foods. For a full day of deliciously pleasing food, start with healthy strawberries to make Strawberry and Goat Cheese Pizza for lunch. Just before dinnertime, go for Heirloom Tomato and Mozzarella Salad and combine it with a crisp, white wine. Finally, round it out with a main course using honey and its natural sweetening qualities to put Linguini with Honey-Sauced Prawns on the table.

With the help of these tasty recipes, you’re set for a full day of fantastic, farm-fresh foods. Find additional farm-to-table options at culinary.net.

Please Your Palate with Pasta

Make pasta the centerpiece of your meal with this recipe for Linguini with Honey-Sauced Prawns, which combines sweet honey with classic linguini pasta for a flavorful bite at the dinner table. Outside of honey’s ability as a natural sweetener, it can also give you a boost of energy as a rich source of carbohydrates – and this recipe is no exception, with 61 grams of carbs in each serving. Find more of the benefits honey provides, plus delicious recipes, at honey.com.

Linguini with Honey-Sauced Prawns

Recipe courtesy of the National Honey Board
Servings: 4

  • 1          pound prawns, peeled and deveined
  • 1/2       cup julienne carrots
  • 1/2       cup julienne celery
  • 1/2       cup green onions, sliced diagonally
  • 3          cloves garlic, minced
  • 2          tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2       cup water
  • 1/4       cup honey
  • 4          teaspoons cornstarch
  • 1          teaspoon salt
  • 1/4       teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1/4       teaspoon crushed dried rosemary leaves
  • 1          pound cooked linguini pasta, kept warm
  1. In large skillet, stir-fry prawns, carrots, celery, green onions and garlic in oil over medium-high heat about 3 minutes, or until prawns start to turn pink.
  2. In small bowl, combine remaining ingredients except pasta; mix well. Add to prawn mixture; stir-fry about 1 minute, or until sauce thickens.
  3. Serve over pasta.

A Winning Combination

Put a fresh twist on farm-to-table goodness by pairing two vine-ripened garden treasures: heirloom tomatoes and crisp, refreshing white wine. Northern California’s Sonoma County is known for some of the nation’s finest vineyards. It’s also a culinary destination with a wide range of farms and artisan food purveyors. Inspired by the annual Kendall-Jackson Heirloom Tomato Festival, which celebrates its 20th anniversary this year, this salad recipe is a twist on classic favorite, delighting the palate by pairing farm-fresh tomatoes with the perfect wine. Find more pairing tips and recipes featuring seasonal ingredients at kj.com.

Heirloom Tomato and Mozzarella Salad

Servings: 4

  • 2 1/2    pounds heirloom tomatoes, mixed varieties
  • 1/4       cup good quality extra-virgin olive oil
  • kosher salt, to taste
  • freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1/4       cup micro basil (or 1 dozen basil leaves, sliced and torn), divided
  • 2          large balls fresh mozzarella, cut into wedges
  • flaked sea salt
  1. Slice tomatoes into 3/4- to 1-inch thick wedges. In large bowl, add tomatoes, olive oil, kosher salt, pepper and half the basil. Toss and allow to marinate 2 minutes. Arrange tomatoes and mozzarella on serving plate, alternating each. Pour marinating liquid over tomatoes and mozzarella. Garnish with remaining basil and sprinkle with sea salt and pepper.

Serve with Kendall-Jackson Grand Reserve Chardonnay. Chardonnay’s flavors of orchard fruit complement the sweetness of late summer tomatoes.

Pizza with a Sweet Twist

This non-traditional take on pizza will have your taste buds exploding with savory goat cheese and strawberries marinated in a white balsamic vinaigrette. California strawberries, which – despite their sweet taste – boast just 7 grams of sugar and provide 140 percent of the daily recommended amount of vitamin C per cup, are hand-picked to ensure only the highest quality berries are harvested. Research has also shown this farm-to-table superfruit to be an effective way to help prevent and manage Alzheimer’s disease and diabetes. For more information and strawberry recipes, visit californiastrawberries.com.

Strawberry and Goat Cheese Pizza

Recipe courtesy of the California Strawberry Commission
Servings: 8 (1/2 pizza each)

  • 1/2       ounce active dry yeast
  • 1          tablespoon sugar
  • 3-4       cups all-purpose flour
  • 2          teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1          tablespoon olive oil
  • 3          tablespoons white balsamic vinegar
  • 3          tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/4       cup aged balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2       cup (4 ounces) softened goat cheese
  • 4          cups fresh California strawberries, hulled and quartered
  • 1/4       cup (2 ounces) crumbled goat cheese
  • coarsely ground black pepper
  • baby arugula
  • frisee
  1. Heat oven to 400°F.
  2. To make pizza dough: In mixer bowl, sprinkle yeast and sugar over 1 cup warm water; let stand until foamy. Add 3 cups flour, salt and olive oil; mix with dough hook until stretchy and no longer sticky, adding more flour if necessary. Divide dough into four equal portions. Refrigerate, covered, until needed.
  3. To make white balsamic vinaigrette: In small nonreactive saucepan, simmer white balsamic vinegar until reduced to 1 1/2 tablespoons. Whisk in extra-virgin olive oil.
  4. To make aged balsamic reduction: In small nonreactive saucepan, simmer aged balsamic vinegar until reduced to about 4 teaspoons.
  5. On lightly floured surface, roll each piece of pizza dough into 8-inch circle. Place on baking sheet; bake 10 minutes, or until firm and slightly brown. Spread softened goat cheese on pizzas, leaving 1/2-inch border.
  6. Toss strawberries with white balsamic vinaigrette; arrange strawberries evenly on goat cheese. Bake 10 minutes more. Remove from oven; scatter crumbled goat cheese on top.
  7. Drizzle with aged balsamic reduction; sprinkle with black pepper. Garnish pizzas with leaves of arugula and frisee.

Photo courtesy of Getty Images (Linguini with Honey-Sauced Prawns)

Source: Culinary.net

Healthy 05 February 2019

Help Fight Inflammation with Food

(Family Features) On top of being tasty, certain foods contain specific nutrients and natural compounds that may help fight inflammation, a condition linked to arthritis and gout. With that in mind, try heading to the fridge or pantry the next time you feel joint pain, swelling or stiff knees.

Colorful fruits and vegetables, including ruby red tart cherries and dark leafy greens like spinach and kale, are among the most powerful anti-inflammatory foods, along with oily fish (salmon, sardines and scallops), nuts, seeds and whole grains. Ingredients such as ginger, turmeric and olive oil may also help combat inflammation.

For an inflammation-fighting boost, Montmorency tart cherries contain the “highest anti-inflammatory content of any food,” according to research conducted at Oregon Health & Science University. Results show that cherry intake can help reduce blood levels of gout-causing uric acid and reduce the painful symptoms of osteoarthritis. Research also shows that Montmorency tart cherry juice can reduce post-exercise inflammation and muscle pain.  

“For decades, people with arthritis and gout have consumed tart cherry juice for pain relief. Now there’s scientific evidence to back up this popular folklore remedy,” said registered dietitian Michelle Babb, author of “Anti-Inflammatory Eating Made Easy.” “Since Montmorency tart cherries are one of the richest sources of anthocyanins, a potent type of flavonoid, they can offer a natural way to help ease the pain related to arthritis and gout.”

To help fight inflammation with food, try this recipe for Bay Scallop, Baby Kale and Corn Salad with Tart Cherry Granola, which is packed with anti-inflammatory ingredients. Learn more about the research on Montmorency tart cherries and inflammation, and find more recipes, at choosecherries.com.

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Bay Scallop, Baby Kale and Corn Salad with Tart Cherry Granola

Prep time: 30 minutes
Cook time: 15 minutes
Total time: 45 minutes
Yield: 1 salad

Savory Granola:

  • 1/3       cup oats
  • 1/3       cup chopped walnuts
  • 1/4       cup sunflower seeds
  • 2          tablespoons buckwheat groats
  • 2          tablespoons pepitas
  • 1/4       cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2          tablespoons honey
  • 1          tablespoon spicy brown mustard
  • salt
  • pepper
  • 1/4       cup dried Montmorency tart cherries

Dressing:

  • 1          shallot, minced
  • 3          tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2          tablespoons dried Montmorency tart cherries
  • 2          tablespoons Montmorency tart cherry juice
  • 1          tablespoon spicy brown mustard
  • 2          teaspoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1          teaspoon honey
  • salt
  • pepper

Salad:

  • 10        ounces baby kale
  • 1          grilled ear of corn, kernels sliced off
  • 1          cup sprouts (alfalfa or microgreens)
  • 1/2       tablespoon butter
  • 8          ounces bay scallops, patted dry
  1. To make savory granola: Heat oven to 350° F. Line baking sheet with parchment paper or baking mat.
  2. In large bowl, combine oats, walnuts, sunflower seeds, buckwheat groats and pepitas. In small bowl, whisk together olive oil, honey, mustard, salt and pepper.
  3. Pour wet ingredients into large bowl and toss until well combined.
  4. Spread mixture onto baking sheet in single layer and bake 18-20 minutes, tossing once halfway through, until granola starts to turn golden brown and crispy around edges.
  5. Remove from oven, add cherries, toss to combine, spread into single layer and let cool.
  6. To make dressing: In food processor, process shallot, olive oil, cherries, cherry juice, mustard, vinegar, honey, salt and pepper until smooth.
  7. To make salad: Place kale, corn kernels and sprouts in large bowl; set aside.
  8. In large skillet over medium-high heat, melt butter. Once hot, add scallops and cook until golden and starting to caramelize on one side. Flip and repeat on other side.
  9. Add scallops to large salad bowl. Pour dressing over top and toss until well combined.
  10. Break up granola into small pieces and add to salad bowl. Toss lightly before serving.

Source: Cherry Marketing Institute

Meal Ideas 20 July 2018

Tips for Hosting a Healthy Summer Cookout

(Family Features) When people think of barbecues, many think of foods loaded with fat, salt and sugar, which can seem challenging if you are trying to eat healthy. However, it is possible - and easier than you think - to host a balanced cookout with nutritious options, without sacrificing flavor or quality.

Smithfield nutritionist Erin Thacker, MA, RDN, recommends these tips for hosting a backyard barbecue that will leave your guests healthy and happy:

  • Stick to lean protein: fresh pork cuts such as sirloins, tenderloins, boneless loins and chops are packed with protein and contain key nutrients like vitamin B6, thiamin, phosphorus, niacin, potassium, riboflavin and zinc. Smithfield fresh pork tenderloins and boneless sirloin roasts are even certified by the American Heart Association* as heart-healthy foods.
     
  • Layer on fruits and veggies: grilled vegetables make for a quick and delicious side dish, and grilled fruits are a health-conscious way to end the meal on a lighter note.
     
  • Lighten up: swap mayonnaise and heavy creams for Greek yogurt and vinegars, and opt for homemade dressings or sauces instead of store-bought condiments, which often have high sugar contents.

Try these simple, dietitian-approved recipes for Grilled Fresh Pork and Veggies with Lemon or Sweet and Spicy Fresh Pork Mini Kebabs. For more healthy and great-tasting recipe ideas, visit Smithfield.com.

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Grilled Fresh Pork and Veggies with Lemon

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

  • 1 Smithfield Fresh Pork Tenderloin, cut into four thick slices
  • 2 teaspoons garlic pepper
  • 1 zucchini squash, cut in half lengthwise
  • 1 yellow summer squash, cut in half lengthwise
  • 1 large portobello mushroom
  • 1/2 large red bell pepper, cut in half lengthwise and flattened
  • 1/2 large red onion, cut into slices
  • 1 lemon, cut in half
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  1. Heat charcoal or gas grill to medium-high. Season fresh pork slices with garlic pepper; grill about 5 minutes per side until internal temperature reaches 145-160° F.
  2. Brush both sides of zucchini squash, yellow squash, mushroom, pepper and onion, plus cut sides of lemon, with oil.
  3. Grill vegetables for 10 minutes, turning occasionally. Add lemon to grill, cut-side down, and cook additional 2 minutes.
  4. Place vegetables and lemon on cutting board; coarsely chop vegetables. Serve with fresh pork slices on top; squeeze lemon over meat.

Nutritional information per serving: 200 calories; 6 g total fat; 1 g saturated fat; 75 mg cholesterol; 75 mg sodium; 8 g total carbohydrates; 2 g dietary fiber; 4 g sugars; 30 g protein.

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Sweet and Spicy Fresh Pork Mini Kebabs

Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 10 minutes
Servings: 16 kebabs

  • 1 Smithfield Roasted Garlic and Cracked Black Pepper Marinated Fresh Pork Sirloin, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 1/2 pineapple, cored and cut into 16 (1-inch) cubes
  • 2 red bell peppers, cut into 16 (1-inch) pieces
  • 16 bamboo skewers (6 inches), soaked in water and drained
  • 2/3 cup honey
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons Caribbean jerk seasoning
  1. Heat gas or charcoal grill to medium-high.
  2. Thread two pieces of fresh pork sirloin, one pineapple cube and one red pepper piece onto each skewer. Wrap exposed end of skewer with foil to discourage scorching.
  3. Mix honey, vinegar and jerk seasoning together for glaze.
  4. Grill kebabs approximately 10 minutes, turning occasionally, until fresh pork reaches internal temperature of 145° F and then rest for 3 minutes. Generously brush kebabs with glaze during last 2-3 minutes.

Nutritional information per serving: 80 calories; 1 g total fat; 0 g saturated fat; 20 mg cholesterol; 90 mg sodium; 12 g total carbohydrates; 1 g dietary fiber; 9 g sugars; 8 g protein.

*Information and recipes not provided by the American Heart Association unless expressly stated.

Source:  Smithfield

Meal Ideas 04 January 2018

Simple Sheet Pan Suppers

(Family Features) At times, spending hours in the kitchen can be a relaxing, enjoyable experience. However, even for avid home cooks, a busy weeknight isn’t one of those times. Fortunately, solutions like sheet pan suppers make it easy to create dishes with exceptional flavor depth that come together quickly and clean up just as fast.

Keeping a variety of vegetables on hand makes it simple to pull together a family meal. Onions, for example, are versatile, flavorful, easy to store, have a long shelf-life and are available year-round from U.S. growers. An added benefit when cooking with onions is that you’re serving up a good source of fiber.

All About Onions

Knowing how to buy and store onions can make them true superstars in your kitchen. Growers and shippers of the National Onion Association and Idaho-Eastern Oregon Onion Committee offer these tips:

Buying
When shopping, buy onions with dry outer skins, free of spots or blemishes. The onion should be firm and have no scent. Avoid bulbs that have begun to sprout.

Yellow, red and white onions are available year-round from
producers in the United States.

Seasonal differences like flavor and texture are noticeable and highlighted during these time frames:

Fall and winter onions (available August-April ) have multiple layers of thick, paper-like layers of skin. Known for their mild to pungent flavor profile, these varieties can be eaten raw, and are ideal for roasting, caramelizing, grilling and frying because they have less water content.

Spring and summer onions (available March-August) have thin, often transparent skins and are typically sweeter and milder than fall and winter varieties. Due to their high water content and mild flavor, they are best used for raw, pickled, lightly cooked or grilled dishes.

Storing
Store onions in a cool, dry, well-ventilated place, not the refrigerator. Do not store whole, unpeeled onions in plastic bags. Lack of air movement reduces storage life. Peeled or cut onions may be stored in a sealed container in the refrigerator for up to 7 days.

For more tasty recipes to make supper a cinch, visit onions-usa.org and usaonions.com.
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Spicy Sheet Pan Roasted Jambalaya

Recipe courtesy of the National Onion Association and Idaho-Eastern Oregon Onion Committee
Servings: 4-6

  • 1          large yellow onion, diced
  • 1/2       large green bell pepper, diced
  • 1/2       large yellow bell pepper, diced
  • 1/2       large red bell pepper, diced
  • 3          stalks celery, sliced or diced
  • 2          garlic cloves, minced
  • 1-2       jalapenos, seeded and diced
  • 1          pint cherry tomatoes
  • 3          tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 1/2       teaspoon salt
  • 1/2       teaspoon black pepper
  • 1          link (13.5 ounces) Andouille sausage, sliced
  • 1          pound large shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 1          tablespoon Cajun seasoning blend
  • linguine noodles, cooked according to package directions
  • 1-2       lemons, sliced in thin wedges
  • 2          green onions, sliced
  • fresh chopped parsley
  1. Heat oven to 400° F.
  2. Line 13-by-18-inch sheet pan with parchment paper.
  3. In large bowl, combine onion, bell peppers, celery, garlic, jalapenos, tomatoes, 2 tablespoons olive oil, salt and pepper until evenly combined. Spread out evenly on pan in single layer. Add slices of Andouille sausage. Roast 15-20 minutes, or until vegetables are tender and start to brown.
  4. Toss shrimp with Cajun seasoning and prepare linguine noodles.
  5. When ready, remove baking sheet from oven. Place shrimp on top of vegetable and sausage mixture in single layer. Top with half the lemon wedges. Return to oven and cook about 5-8 minutes, or until shrimp is no longer pink.
  6. Serve over linguine garnished with green onions and parsley with remaining fresh lemon wedges on side.

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Easy Drumstick-Quinoa Sheet Pan Supper

Recipe courtesy of the National Onion Association and Idaho-Eastern Oregon Onion Committee
Servings: 4-6

  • 8-10     chicken legs
  • 1          fennel bulb
  • 1          large yellow onion, sliced
  • 1          large red onion, sliced
  • 2          garlic cloves, sliced
  • 3          medium-sized potatoes, cubed
  • 1          orange (1/4 cup juice and zest)
  • 1/4       teaspoon thyme, dried
  • 2          tablespoons olive oil
  • 1          teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2       teaspoon black pepper
  • 2          tablespoons fresh chopped parsley
  • orange rind curls
  • brown rice, cooked according to package directions
  • quinoa, cooked according to package directions
  1. Heat oven to 400° F.
  2. Line 13-by-18-inch sheet pan with parchment paper.
  3. Place chicken legs on pan. Spread fennel, yellow onion, red onion, garlic and potatoes around and in between legs.
  4. In small bowl, whisk together orange juice and zest, thyme and olive oil. Pour mixture over chicken and vegetables. Season with salt and pepper.
  5. Roast 45 minutes, or until chicken is cooked through and vegetables are tender. Cook rice and quinoa.
  6. Garnish chicken with parsley and orange curls. Serve over brown rice and quinoa.

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Sheet Pan-Style Buddha Bowls

Recipe courtesy of the National Onion Association and Idaho-Eastern Oregon Onion Committee
Servings: 4-6

  • 2          yellow onions, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch wedges
  • 1/2       head of red or purple cabbage, cut into wedges
  • 2          red potatoes, cut into 1/2-inch wedges
  • 1          small butternut squash, peeled and 1/2-inch diced
  • 1          pound Brussels sprouts, halved
  • extra-virgin olive oil
  • salt, to taste
  • black pepper, to taste
  • 1 1/2    cups quinoa, cooked according to package directions

Tahini sauce:

  • 1          tablespoon tahini
  • 1/2       lemon, juiced
  • 1          teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/2-1    teaspoon maple syrup
  • 2          avocados, peeled and sliced
  • fresh parsley
  1. Heat oven to 400° F.
  2. Line 13-by-18-inch sheet pan with parchment paper.
  3. Place onion, cabbage, potatoes, squash and Brussels sprouts in single layer on pan. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Roast vegetables 40 minutes, or until tender. Add more salt and pepper if needed.
  4. While vegetables roast, cook quinoa.
  5. To make tahini sauce: In small bowl, whisk tahini, lemon juice, mustard and syrup until smooth.
  6. To assemble Buddha bowls: Spoon quinoa into bowls. Add roasted veggies and garnish with avocado and parsley. Drizzle tahini sauce over each bowl and serve.

Source: National Onion Association and Idaho-Eastern Oregon Onion Committee

Meal Ideas 25 August 2017

Stay Lean with Protein

(Family Features) Shedding excess pounds doesn’t have to mean depriving yourself of your favorite foods, including red meat. A study from the University of Colorado Anschutz Health and Wellness Center shows that healthy, higher-protein diets including lean beef can be beneficial to not only weight loss, but also maintaining muscle mass and heart health.

The study is in line with ongoing research on the importance of lean protein for weight loss. To kick your healthy eating plan into high gear, try these tips:

  • Enjoy protein at every meal. One of the benefits of having protein in your meal is feeling more satisfied, which helps reduce mindless eating or snacking in between meals. Additionally, meals with high-quality protein help build muscle and reduce body fat.
  • Choose lean protein options. Picking lean protein options can be easier than you think. You can still enjoy a beef burger and save calories by choosing lean or extra-lean ground beef. Other smart meat case picks include top sirloin steak or sirloin tip, bottom round steak or roast, eye of round steak or roast, or top round steak or roast. Also make sure to choose colorful vegetables and fruits to round out your meal, like in this recipe for Grilled Southwestern Steak and Colorful Vegetables.
  • Dine out smart. Many people struggle with getting a balanced, protein-filled meal when dining out or grabbing food on-the-go. Look for words like “grilled,” “broiled” or “baked” when browsing the menu for lean proteins. Or add a lean protein to your entree salad, whether it’s for lunch or dinner. For snack time, consider beef jerky to get protein on-the-go.

For meal ideas and tips to support your weight loss goals, visit BeefItsWhatsForDinner.com.
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Grilled Southwestern Steak and Colorful Vegetables

Recipe courtesy of the Beef Checkoff
Total time: 25-35 minutes
Servings: 6

  • 1          beef top round steak, cut 1-inch thick (about 1 1/2 pounds)
  • salt, to taste

Marinade:

  • 1/4       cup fresh lime juice
  • 1/4       cup prepared mild salsa
  • 1          tablespoon chopped garlic
  • 1          tablespoon olive oil
  • 1          teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2       teaspoon coarse ground black pepper

Colorful Vegetables:

  • 2          tablespoons olive oil
  • 1          medium green or red bell pepper, cut into 1/4-inch strips
  • 8          ounces button mushrooms, sliced 1/4-inch thick
  • 2          cups zucchini, sliced 1/4-inch thick
  • 3/4       teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2       teaspoon salt
  • 1/4       teaspoon coarse ground black pepper
  • 1          cup finely chopped tomatoes
  • 1/4       cup chopped green onions
  1. In small bowl, combine marinade ingredients. Place beef steak and marinade in food-safe plastic bag; turn steak to coat. Close bag securely and marinate in refrigerator 6 hours, or as long as overnight, turning occasionally.
  2. Remove steak from marinade; discard marinade. Place steak on grill over medium, ash-covered coals. For medium-rare (145° F) doneness, grill covered, turning once, 12-14 minutes (on gas grill over medium heat, 16-19 minutes).
  3. To prepare Colorful Vegetables: In large, nonstick skillet over medium-high heat, heat olive oil. Add bell pepper strips; cook and stir 1-2 minutes, or until crisp-tender. Add mushrooms, zucchini, cumin, salt and black pepper; cook and stir 3-4 minutes, or until crisp-tender. Add tomatoes and green onions; cook and stir 1 minute.
  4. Carve steak into thin slices; season with salt, to taste. Serve with Colorful Vegetables.

Source: National Cattleman's Beef Association

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