Meal Ideas 30 March 2020

Family-Friendly Ways to Rethink Favorite Recipes

(Family Features) Freshen up family dinners by adding new ingredients like pecans, with natural richness and subtle sweetness coupled with irresistible crunch.

Kitchen staples are being used to add twists to traditional dishes, so finding an item you can use to mix up classic family recipes is key. Pecans pack flavor, texture and nutrition all in one bite, and they have a long shelf life. Shelled pecans can be kept in airtight containers in the refrigerator for about nine months and for up to two years in sealed plastic bags in the freezer.

While pecans are beloved in classic desserts, like pecan pie, they also offer a variety of nutrition benefits that can be added to nearly any meal. They are among the highest in “good” monounsaturated fats, contain 3 grams of plant protein per serving and are a source of fiber, flavonoids and minerals like manganese, which is essential for metabolism and bone health.

Nearly two decades of research document the heart-health benefits of pecans. In fact, according to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, scientific evidence suggests but does not prove that eating 1 1/2 ounces per day of most nuts, such as pecans, as part of a diet low in saturated fat and cholesterol, may reduce the risk of heart disease. One serving of pecans (28 grams) has 18 grams of unsaturated fat and only 2 grams of saturated fat.

Add crunch to this Chinese Chicken Salad with Pecans by swapping out croutons, use chopped pecans as a flavorful and nutrient-dense coating for Pecan Chicken Meatballs and bake this Pecan Banana Bread as a nutritious and kid-friendly breakfast or snack to fill your home with a delicious scent.

Discover more nutritious recipes at AmericanPecan.com

Pecan Chicken Meatballs

Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 30 minutes
Yield: 9 meatballs

  • 1          pound ground chicken
  • 1/4       cup spinach, chopped
  • 1          tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1          egg
  • 1          teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1/4       teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/4       teaspoon paprika
  • 1/4       teaspoon salt
  • 1/4       teaspoon pepper
  • 1/4       teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional)
  • 1          cup finely chopped fresh pecan pieces, divided
  1. Heat oven to 400° F. Line baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. In large bowl, mix ground chicken, spinach, lemon juice, egg, garlic, onion powder, paprika, salt, pepper, cayenne (if desired) and 1/2 cup pecans until well combined.
  3. Roll chicken mixture into 1 tablespoon- sized meatballs.
  4. Place reserved pecans in bowl. Roll meatballs in pecans to coat then place on prepared baking sheet.
  5. Bake 20-30 minutes until meatballs are cooked through.
  6. Serve warm with sauces for dipping or over pasta.

Chinese Chicken Salad with Pecans

Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 10 minutes
Servings: 4

Dressing:

  • 1/4       cup pecan butter
  • 1          tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 1          tablespoon honey
  • 1          teaspoon toasted sesame oil
  • 1 1/2    teaspoons soy sauce
  • 2          tablespoons warm water, plus additional as needed (optional)

Salad:

  • 4          ounces dried thin rice noodles
  • cold water
  • 4          cups chopped romaine lettuce
  • 4          cups chopped iceberg lettuce
  • 1/4       cup toasted and chopped pecans
  • 2          scallions, finely chopped
  • 1          cup bean sprouts
  • 1/2       cup crispy wontons
  • 1          cup mandarin oranges
  • 2          tablespoons sesame seeds
  • 2          cups rotisserie chicken breast, chopped
  1. To make dressing: In medium bowl, whisk pecan butter, rice vinegar, honey, sesame oil and soy sauce until smooth.
  2. Add 2 tablespoons warm water and whisk until incorporated. Add additional water, 1 teaspoon at a time, if desired, until dressing reaches pourable consistency.
  3. To make salad: Cook rice noodles according to package instructions. Once cooked, drain and transfer to bowl with cold water to keep from sticking.
  4. In large bowl, toss romaine and iceberg lettuces, pecans, scallions, bean sprouts, crispy wontons, mandarin oranges and sesame seeds.
  5. Divide salad among four plates; top each with 1/2 cup chicken and serve with dressing.

Pecan Banana Bread

Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 60 minutes
Servings: 8

  • 10        ounces gluten-free baking flour mix
  • 1          teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2       teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2       teaspoon sea salt
  • 2          flax eggs
  • 1          cup organic brown or coconut sugar
  • 1/2       cup coconut oil
  • 1/2       vanilla bean
  • 1/2       cup vegan yogurt
  • 3/4       cup mashed bananas, ripe
  • 1          cup raw pecan pieces, chopped, plus additional for topping
  1. Heat oven to 350° F. Prepare 9-by-5-inch banana bread pan.
  2. In medium bowl, sift flour mix, baking powder, baking soda and sea salt; whisk to combine.
  3. In mixer bowl, mix eggs, sugar and coconut oil 2 minutes on medium-low speed.
  4. Scrape vanilla bean and add to mixture. Add vegan yogurt and mashed bananas; mix 2 minutes on medium-low speed.
  5. Remove bowl from mixer and fold 1 cup raw pecan pieces into batter until evenly distributed.
  6. Add batter to banana bread pan and use spatula to smooth down top. Sprinkle additional pecan pieces on top.
  7. Bake banana bread on top rack 60 minutes until toothpick comes out with few crumbs but not completely clean.
  8. Remove from oven and allow to cool 10 minutes in pan. Hold sides of pan and flip onto wire rack.
  9. Allow bread to cool completely. Slice as desired.

Source:  American Pecan Council

Videos 27 January 2020

Beefy Cali Roll

(Family Features) An innovative sushi-style concept, “beefshi” features convenient beef products like pastrami, roast beef, summer sausage, hot dogs, corned beef or bologna prepared in rolls with rice and vegetables. You can beef up your menu with a trendy twist with a recipe like this Beefy Cali Roll that includes corned beef, avocado and cucumber.

Find more information and recipes at beefshi.com.

Beefy Cali Roll

Recipe courtesy of the North American Meat Institute on behalf of the Beef Checkoff
Yield: 2 rolls (16 pieces)

Hand Vinegar:

  • 1          cup water
  • 1/4       cup rice vinegar

Piquant Sauce:

  • 1/2       cup plain yogurt
  • 1          tablespoon mustard
  • 1          tablespoon horseradish
  • 1/2       avocado, mashed until smooth

Maki:

  • 2          sheets nori
  • 2          cups prepared sushi rice
  • 6          thin slices corned beef
  • 1/2       avocado, cut into slivers
  • 1/4       cucumber, cut lengthwise into thin strips
  • rice seasoning
  • wasabi peas
  1. To make hand vinegar: In small bowl, stir water and rice vinegar.
  2. To make piquant sauce: In small bowl, blend yogurt, mustard, horseradish and avocado.
  3. To make maki: Lay sushi mat on clean surface. Moisten hands with hand vinegar and shake off excess. Place one nori sheet on mat, shiny-side down. Spread 1 cup rice across nori, leaving 1 inch empty at farthest end.
  4. Lay half of corned beef, avocado and cucumber crosswise along rice, covering half the surface closest to you.
  5. Securing corned beef, avocado and cucumber with fingers, use thumbs to push end of mat up and over filling until edge of the nori meets rice on opposite side. Press firmly on roll.
  6. Lift top of mat and roll firmly until tight and round. Squeeze gently to shape roll. Press ends in carefully to secure loose rice. Remove mat and set roll aside.
  7. Repeat to make second roll.
  8. Use thin, sharp knife to cut each roll into eight slices. Arrange on sushi platter and sprinkle with rice seasoning and wasabi peas. Serve with piquant sauce.

Sponsor: North American Meat Institute

Meal Ideas 18 September 2019

Busy Season Solutions

Quick and tasty meals and snacks

(Family Features) For those who are always on the go, it can be difficult to find time to whip up meals and snacks that are both nutritious and tasty. However, with some simple changes – and timesaving recipes – you can create delicious dishes and meals that will keep you feeling energized to fuel your busy lifestyle.

For example, these quick and easy recipes for a main course, snacks and even desserts are all part of the 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.

An On-the-Go Morning Treat

Busy mornings can lead to breakfast being put on the backburner or skipped altogether. However, with an option like the Atkins Chocolate Banana Shake, which is made with real fruit, you can enjoy the most important meal of the day on-the-go or anytime you need a snack break.

A beneficial source of B vitamins, these protein-rich shakes can satisfy hunger with 5 grams of fiber and provide steady energy all day long. Made to easily fit into a busy lifestyle, they’re also gluten-free with no artificial colors or preservatives, and low-glycemic with 4 net carbs and 2 grams of sugar.

Kickstart a nutritious eating plan at Atkins.com

Egg Roll Bowl with Shrimp

Recipe courtesy of Atkins
Prep time: 5 minutes
Cook time: 10 minutes
Servings: 4

  • 5          cups frozen cauliflower rice
  • 3          tablespoons canola oil
  • 3          tablespoons sesame oil
  • 4          teaspoons minced or pressed garlic
  • 2          teaspoons ginger paste
  • 6          cups pre-cut coleslaw (cabbage and carrots)
  • 1          cup sliced red bell pepper
  • 1/2       cup thinly sliced scallions, root and tips trimmed
  • 1          teaspoon Chinese five-spice blend
  • 1/4       cup tamari soy sauce
  • 2          tablespoons mirin rice cooking wine
  • 1          pound cooked and peeled shrimp, thawed
  • 4          teaspoons sesame seeds
  1. In microwave, steam cauliflower according to package instructions.
  2.  
  3. While cauliflower is cooking, warm large, nonstick skillet with lid over medium heat. Add oils, swirl to coat pan and, when shimmering, add garlic and ginger. Sauté until sizzling and fragrant, stirring constantly, about 30 seconds.
  4. Add coleslaw, bell pepper and scallions; continue sautéing, stirring frequently, until cabbage just begins to wilt, about 3 minutes.
  5. Sprinkle on five-spice blend and stir to incorporate. Add soy sauce and mirin rice cooking wine to pan and stir to evenly coat cabbage. Add shrimp to skillet; toss to evenly distribute. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover with lid and allow shrimp to warm, about 3 minutes.
  6. Measure about 1 cup cooked cauliflower rice into bottom of four bowls. Top evenly with shrimp and cabbage mixture, about 1 cup vegetables and 9-11 large shrimp per serving, drizzling with pan sauce evenly. Sprinkle each bowl with 1 teaspoon sesame seeds and serve while hot.

Notes: To help meal come together quickly, use frozen cauliflower rice, pre-grated ginger paste, pre-minced jarred garlic and bagged coleslaw mix. Green onions and bell pepper can also be pre-sliced.

Parmesan Crisps

Recipe courtesy of Atkins
Prep time: 2 minutes
Cook time: 8 minutes
Servings: 6

  • 3/4       cup shredded Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2       teaspoon Italian seasoning blend
  1. Heat oven to 325° F. Line baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Use large cup or mug to draw six roughly 4-inch circles on parchment paper. Fill each circle with 2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese, smoothing shreds out and creating slightly thicker outer edge. Sprinkle each with pinch of Italian seasoning and bake 7 1/2 minutes, or until outer edges and bottoms are golden but not burned.
  3. Remove from oven and let cool at least 1 minute before eating. Store in airtight container at room temperature up to 1 day.

Avocado Chocolate Mousse

Recipe courtesy of Atkins
Servings: 4

  • 3          avocados
  • 1/2       cup unsweetened coconut milk
  • 1/2       cup sugar-free chocolate chips
  • 2 1/2    tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 2          tablespoons Erythritol (low-carb sweetener)
  • 3          teaspoons stevia-based sugar substitute
  • 2          teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/8       teaspoon salt
  1. Mash avocado and place in blender with coconut milk. Blend until smooth.
  2. In microwave-safe bowl, heat chocolate chips 20 seconds, stir well and heat in 10-second intervals until melted, stirring in-between. Once melted, add to avocado mixture and continue to blend while scraping down sides of bowl.
  3. Add cocoa powder, sweetener, sugar substitute, vanilla and salt. Blend and scrape down sides of bowl until all ingredients are well combined and mousse is smooth and creamy. Add additional sugar substitute 1/4 teaspoon at a time if sweeter mousse is desired.

Note: All ingredients should be at room temperature to make blending smooth and easy.

Yogurt Parfait

Prep time: 5 minutes
Servings: 1

  • 13        pieces Atkins Honey Almond Vanilla Crunch Bites
  • 1/4       cup fresh blueberries
  • 1/4       cup plain, unsweetened whole milk Greek yogurt
  • 1          tablespoon almond butter
  • 1          pinch cinnamon
  • 1          pinch sugar substitute
  1. Roughly chop crunch bites.
  2. In small glass, layer blueberries, crunch bites and yogurt. Swirl almond butter on top and finish with sprinkle of cinnamon and sugar substitute.

Photos courtesy of Getty Images (Egg Roll Bowl with Shrimp, Parmesan Crisps and Avocado Chocolate Mousse)

Source: Atkins

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

Kids 01 August 2019

8 Kid-Friendly, Back-To-School Recipes

(Family Features) Save time and serve up better-for-you lunches, snacks, desserts and after-school energy boosts with these simple and affordable recipes.

By packing quick and easy lunches, you can have your kids set for each busy day without sacrificing time together. Shopping for your grade-A, back-to-school essentials at a store like ALDI means you’ll use quality ingredients to prepare fun, better-for-you lunchboxes and more.

Consider these eight recipe ideas to pack a better lunchbox. Get schooled in savings and check out aldi.us to find more back-to-school inspiration.

  1. Secret Veggie Turkey NuggetsSneak those all-important veggies into your child’s lunch with these baked nuggets that combine ground turkey, cauliflower, zucchini and onions. Add a favorite dipping sauce to the lunchbox for a tasty, nutritious midday meal.

  1. Bento Box LunchIf your child is adventurous when it comes to flavors, combine a turkey sandwich roll, quinoa salad, broccoli salad and cinnamon apples in this full-flavored bento box.

  1. Fruit Leather WrapsSnack time doesn’t have to mean candy and other unhealthy options. Instead, provide a sweet treat that’s all-natural with blueberries and raspberries in these fruity wraps that are both guilt- and gluten-free.

  1. Tropical Granola BarOne of the most versatile snacks to enjoy nearly any time of day: granola bars. This homemade version combines dried fruit with pumpkin flax and quick oats for a sweet, nutritious treat.

  1. Peanut Butter Granola BitesMake dessert a more nutritious venture with the classic combination of peanut butter, fruit and honey. These small bites of savory flavor can be ready in just 12 minutes for a nighttime snack the whole family can share.

  1. Strawberry Yogurt BarsThe nutritious combination of oats and strawberries makes for a tasty treat. This kid-friendly recipe is an easy option to make ahead and serve anytime.

  1. Tropical Superfruit SmoothieIt only takes six natural ingredients and five minutes to make a supercharged after-school snack.

  1. Carrot Pineapple SmoothieBefore diving into the evening’s homework assignments, help your little learner refuel with fruits and veggies in this creamy smoothie.

Source: ALDI

Meal Ideas 31 July 2019

Back-to-School Food Fit for the Family

(Family Features) As parents and kids navigate back-to-school routines and extracurricular activities, making healthy food choices is essential to keep everyone energized and engaged. 

When it comes to selecting snacks and preparing meals, keep it simple and stock up on foods that are easy to prep and can be used in more than one way. One such food: fresh California grapes, which are abundant throughout the fall and into January. Crisp, juicy grapes can be eaten nearly anytime and anywhere, including school, the office and during after-school activities, at home or away.

Whether eaten fresh or frozen for a cool treat, grapes are a healthy, hydrating alternative to highly processed and calorie-rich foods. They can also be used as an ingredient in easy weeknight meals like California-Style Pizza, cousin to Hawaiian pizza, where fresh grapes star instead of pineapple and prepared pizza dough gives the cook a head start. Frozen Yogurt-Dipped Grapes are an easy, fun snack or dessert that kids can help prepare.

For more snack and meal inspiration, visit grapesfromcalifornia.com.

California-Style Pizza

Servings: 8

  • 1          pound prepared pizza dough
  • 3/4       cup prepared pizza sauce
  • 1 1/2    cups halved California seedless grapes
  • 1          cup diced lean ham
  • 1          cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  1. Heat oven to 450° F.
  2. Divide dough into eight equal portions. Spread into pizza rounds on baking sheets.
  3. Spread with pizza sauce; sprinkle with grapes, ham and cheese. Bake until dough is lightly browned and cheese melted, about 12-14 minutes.

Nutritional information per serving: 220 calories; 11 g protein; 32 g carbohydrates; 6.2 g fat (24% calories from fat); 15 mg cholesterol; 573 mg sodium; 121 mg calcium; 1.4 g fiber.

Frozen Yogurt-Dipped Grapes

Servings: 6 (10 grapes per serving)

  • 60        California grapes, any color, rinsed and patted dry
  • 3/4       cup 2% vanilla Greek yogurt
  • 1/2       cup graham cracker flour or almond flour
  1. Insert toothpick into each grape. Place yogurt in small bowl. Pour graham cracker or almond flour onto plate. Line 9-by-13-inch baking dish with parchment paper.
  2. Dip each grape into yogurt, coating two-thirds of grape, then dip yogurt-covered grape into desired flour to coat bottom. Place each dipped grape on baking dish; repeat until all grapes are yogurt-covered and dipped in flour. Freeze at least two hours, or until grapes are frozen solid.

Nutritional information per serving with graham cracker crumbs: 100 calories; 3 g protein; 20 g carbohydrates; 1.5 g fat (14% calories from fat); 0 g saturated fat; 5 mg cholesterol; 55 mg sodium; 0 g fiber.

Nutritional information per serving with almond flour: 110 calories; 4 g protein; 14 g carbohydrates; 4.5 g fat (37% calories from fat); 0.5 g saturated fat (4% calories from saturated fat); 5 mg cholesterol; 15 mg sodium; 1 g fiber.

Source: California Table Grape Commission

Videos 12 June 2019

Grilled Pineapple with Lime Dip

(Family Features) The grill isn’t just for hamburgers and hot dogs. Try a different way to eat pineapple this summer by grilling it and pairing with a lime dip for a tasty delight.

Find more recipes for summer at Culinary.net.

Watch video to learn how to make this recipe!

Grilled Pineapple with Lime Dip

  • 1          pineapple
  • 1/4       cup brown sugar
  • 2          tablespoons lime juice
  • 3          tablespoons honey

Lime Dip:

  • 8          ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2       cup plain yogurt
  • 3          tablespoons honey
  • 2          tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2          tablespoons lime juice
  • 2          teaspoons lime zest
  1. Peel pineapple; cut into wedges.
  2. In resealable plastic bag, combine brown sugar, lime juice and honey. Add pineapple wedges, seal bag and turn to coat. Refrigerate 1 hour.
  3. To make Lime Dip: In small bowl, beat cream cheese until smooth. Beat in yogurt, honey, brown sugar, lime juice and lime zest. Cover and refrigerate.
  4. Heat grill to medium heat.
  5. Remove pineapple wedges from plastic bag; discard marinade. Grill pineapple wedges, covered, 3-4 minutes on each side, or until golden brown.
  6. Serve with Lime Dip.

Source: Culinary.net

Snacks 07 June 2019

Sweet, Refreshing Summer Snacks

(Family Features) There’s no time like a hot summer picnic to let your patriotic spirit show. These all-American snacks featuring a classic favorite fruit – watermelon – are the perfect solution for nearly any summertime celebration.

Watermelon is a patriotic picnic staple for countless reasons, not the least of which is that it’s a beloved treat that many people associate with memories from childhood. However, nostalgia isn’t the only reason adults are just as likely to gravitate toward watermelon at a summer event. Its sweet, cool and refreshing flavor also makes it a favorite for all ages.

From a practical standpoint, watermelon is also quite portable, versatile and easy to serve, and with a composition of 92% water, it’s a simple way to sneak in some extra hydration on a hot day. Another benefit is its value; watermelon is one of the best values in the produce section among fruit, and just one watermelon can feed up to three dozen people.

Serving watermelon at a party can be as simple as slicing wedges, or you can prepare a dish such as:

  • A fruit basket, with the rind serving as a colorful bowl to hold the watermelon and other fresh fruits.
  • A charcuterie board with a selection of fruit, cheese and protein for simple snacking.
  • Creamy parfaits, perfect for a summery brunch or alternative to more traditional desserts.
  • A creatively colorful and patriotic “cake” that makes for a tasty centerpiece on the dessert table.

Find more ideas for incorporating watermelon into your summer festivities at watermelon.org.

Easy Summer Thirst Quencher

A simple fruit-infused water can give your summer event an instant upgrade in no time at all. Add extra dimension and complexity to the flavor by adding some of your favorite herbs like basil and mint.

Watermelon-Infused Water

  • 2          cups watermelon balls or cubes
  • 1          cup other fruit, such as berries
  • herbs, such as basil or mint
  1. Place watermelon, fruit and herbs in pitcher and cover with water. For best flavor, allow to chill in refrigerator at least 30 minutes before serving.

Red, White and Blue Watermelon Parfait

  • 1          cup blueberries
  • 1          container (6 ounces) Greek yogurt (vanilla, lemon or coconut)
  • 1          cup watermelon, plus three pieces diced watermelon
  • whipped cream, for serving
  1. In pint canning jar, layer blueberries, yogurt and 1 cup watermelon. Top with whipped cream and garnish with three diced watermelon pieces.

Note: To make ahead or make thicker, drain Greek yogurt on paper towels to absorb some liquid.

Patriotic Fruit Salad

  • 1          watermelon
  • honeydew
  • blueberries
  1. Slice 1/4 inch off bottom of watermelon, lengthwise, to create stable base.
  2. Use pencil to draw zig-zag lines for basket opening. Using paring knife, make cuts through rind.
  3. Carefully remove top section, pull out large chunks of flesh and cut them into 3-by-3-inch squares.
  4. Trim 3/4-inch thick slices off squares to use for cutting out stars with 1 1/2-3-inch, star-shaped cookie cutters.
  5. Use ice cream scoop to remove flesh from inside basket and cut scoops into quarters for fruit salad. Place in bottom of basket. Add honeydew and blueberries; stir to combine.
  6. Cut out white stripes from honeydew.
  7. Garnish top of fruit salad with watermelon stars, honeydew stripes and blueberries.

Patriotic Charcuterie Board

  • 1/2       medium seedless watermelon, cut into wedges
  • 1/2       cup fresh raspberries
  • 1 1/2    cups fresh blueberries
  • 10        strawberries (dipped in white chocolate, if desired)
  • 5          ounces fresh goat cheese
  • 1/2       cup toasted, salted cashews
  • 2          ounces cured meats like prosciutto, pancetta, coppa, salami, soppressata, sausage or pepperoni
  • 1          Honeycrisp apple, cored and sliced
  • lemon juice
  • fresh basil leaves
  1. On large board or platter, arrange watermelon, raspberries, blueberries, strawberries, cheese, cashews, meat and apples. Drizzle fruit with lemon juice. Garnish with basil leaves before serving.

Flag Kebab Cake

  • 1          pint fresh, washed blackberries
  • 12        wooden skewers
  • 1          seedless watermelon, flesh cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 1          angel food cake, cut into 1-inch cubes (white part only)
  • dips, such as yogurt, chocolate, caramel or marshmallow (optional)
  1. Thread five blackberries on each of five skewers, followed by alternating watermelon and cake cubes.
  2. On remaining skewers, alternate watermelon and cake so first and last cubes are watermelon. Place skewers on platter; fruit and cake will create stars and stripes when lined properly.
  3. Serve with dips, if desired.

Source:

National Watermelon Promotion Board

Meal Ideas 01 May 2019

Keep Cool on the Grill

Refreshing, dairy-infused dishes for warm days

(Family Features) Keep your kitchen cool and comfortable with grilled meals that banish the heat to the outdoors. Crisp, fresh greens and a perfect blend of spices and savory ingredients make each of these refreshing dishes perfect solutions for toasty days.

Featuring ingredients across the food groups, these dairy-fueled recipes from Milk Means More are ideal for well-rounded meals filled with nutritious flavor. Zesty mustard, spicy Sriracha and rich buttermilk lend a marinated flavor upgrade to traditional grilled chicken, while homemade pesto, fresh corn and ham create a perfect harmony for a cheesy grilled pizza. Or make a salad the star of your dinner table with a simply seasoned sirloin steak, plenty of veggies and a tart twist on a creamy dressing made with yogurt and milk.

Find more refreshing meal solutions at milkmeansmore.org.
Grilled Buttermilk Chicken

Grilled Buttermilk Chicken

Recipe courtesy of Lori Yates of Foxes Love Lemons on behalf of Milk Means More
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 16 minutes
Servings: 4

  • 1 1/2    cups buttermilk
  • 1          tablespoon mustard powder
  • 1          tablespoon Sriracha
  • 2          teaspoons minced garlic
  • 2          teaspoons paprika
  • 4          chicken drumsticks, bone in, skin on
  • 4          chicken thighs, bone in, skin on
  • vegetable oil, for grill
  • 1/4       cup chopped fresh parsley
  • 1         lemon, cut into wedges (optional)
  1. In medium bowl, whisk buttermilk, mustard powder, Sriracha, garlic and paprika.
  2. Place chicken in large zip-top bag; pour buttermilk mixture over chicken. Seal bag and refrigerate 2 hours or overnight.
  3. Heat outdoor grill for direct grilling over medium heat. Remove chicken from marinade, shaking off excess; discard marinade. Lightly oil grill grates. Transfer chicken to grill and cook, turning occasionally, 16-18 minutes, or until internal temperature reaches 165° F.
  4. Transfer chicken to serving platter. Sprinkle with parsley and serve with lemon wedges, if desired.

Grilled Steak Salad with Chive Yogurt Dressing

Grilled Steak Salad with Chive Yogurt Dressing

Recipe courtesy of Kirsten Kubert of Comfortably Domestic on behalf of Milk Means More
Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 10 minutes
Servings: 6

Dressing:

  • 1          cup plain yogurt
  • 3          tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice (3 small limes)
  • 2          tablespoons milk
  • 2          tablespoons chopped fresh chives
  • 1          clove garlic, peeled and minced
  • 1/4       teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/8       teaspoon black pepper

Steak:

  • 1          teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4       teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/4       teaspoon granulated garlic
  • 20        ounces boneless petite sirloin steak

Salad:

  • 3          cups baby spinach
  • 3          cups chopped romaine lettuce hearts
  • 1/2       cup sweet red pepper rings
  • 1/2       cup sweet yellow pepper rings
  • 1          cup avocado chunks
  • 1/4       cup thinly shaved red onion
  1. To make dressing: In blender, combine yogurt, lime juice, milk, chives, garlic, salt and pepper. Blend on low until smooth consistency forms and chives are completely incorporated. Transfer dressing to jar with tight-fitting lid and refrigerate until serving.
  2. Heat grill to medium.
  3. To prepare steak: Combine kosher salt, black pepper and granulated garlic to create rub. Sprinkle half of seasoning mix over one side of steak, pressing it into meat. Repeat with remaining seasoning on opposite side of steak.
  4. Grill steak over direct medium heat to desired level of doneness, approximately 4-5 minutes per side for medium pink center. Remove steak from grill and let rest 7-10 minutes on cutting board.
  5. To make salad: Toss spinach and romaine on large platter. Scatter red and yellow peppers, avocado and onion over greens. Slice grilled sirloin thinly against grain. Arrange meat slices along center of salad.
  6. Drizzle dressing over salad just prior to serving.

Grilled Pizza with Arugula Pesto, Corn and Ham

Grilled Pizza with Arugula Pesto, Corn and Ham

Recipe courtesy of Rachel Gurk of Rachel Cooks on behalf of Milk Means More
Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 10 minutes
Servings: 6

Arugula Pesto:

  • 2          cups fresh arugula, tightly packed
  • 1          clove garlic
  • 1          tablespoon lemon juice
  • pinch red pepper flakes, (optional)
  • 1/3       cup shredded Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2       cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • salt, to taste
  • pepper, to taste

Grilled Pizza:

  • 2          tablespoons flour, divided
  • 1          pound pizza crust dough (at room temperature if using refrigerated dough)
  • vegetable oil, for grill
  • 1/2       cup Arugula Pesto
  • 1/2       cup part-skim ricotta cheese
  • 1/2     cup diced deli ham
  • 1/2-3/4             cup fresh corn kernels (about 1 cob)
  • 1/4     cup thinly sliced red onion
  • 1/4     cup shredded Parmesan cheese
  1. Heat grill to medium heat (350-400° F).
  2. To make Arugula Pesto: In food processor, combine arugula, garlic, lemon juice, red pepper flakes and Parmesan. Pulse until combined then, with food processor on, drizzle in olive oil until pesto forms, scraping down sides as needed. Taste and season with salt and pepper, to taste.
  3. To make Grilled Pizza: Flour pizza dough lightly and stretch or roll to about 1/2-inch thickness (14-16-inch diameter).
  4. Sprinkle remaining flour on large rimless baking sheet, pizza peel or pizza stone. Transfer dough to baking surface.
  5. Clean grill grate and grease with oil-soaked paper towel and tongs. Slide dough off baking surface onto grill. Cover and cook until dough is bubbling on top and golden brown on bottom, 2-3 minutes.
  6. Carefully flip dough over using peel or tongs. Remove crust from grill to add toppings. Spread Arugula Pesto over dough. Top with ricotta, ham, corn kernels, onion and Parmesan. Return pizza to grill, cover and cook until toppings are heated through and bottom of crust is crispy, 5-7 minutes.
  7. Remove from grill, slice and serve.

Source: United Dairy Industry of Michigan

Kids 12 April 2019

Encourage Healthy Eating Habits in Kids

(Family Features) As a parent, instilling healthy eating habits in your children at an early age can aid in proper growth and development. Eating well goes a long way toward maintaining a healthy weight, increasing energy levels and improving moods while also reducing risk of obesity and other chronic issues such as heart disease and diabetes later in life.

Set your children on a path to making lifelong nutritious choices with these tips:

Foster independence. Allowing your children to help with shopping and meal prep can aid in them taking ownership of what they’re eating. Start by divvying up easier tasks such as setting the table then work toward creating snacks and meals on their own. These Rainbow Fruit Parfaits are simple for kids to assemble – just set the ingredients out and let them layer – and can serve as a healthful on-the-go breakfast or after-school snack.

Offer balanced options. Children require balanced diets made up of all three major food groups, including fruits and vegetables, for proper development. Looking for the Produce for Kids logo next to nutritional, family-friendly items at the grocery store is an easy way to identify healthy food choices while also supporting local organizations that help children and families in need.

Be a role model. Typically, your children will follow your behaviors, which includes the types of foods they select at mealtimes. Eating a rainbow of fruits and vegetables can help ensure your family is getting a complete range of nutrients. For example, a recipe like this Rainbow Buddha Bowl provides a combination of fresh and roasted vegetables that can be customized to meet your family’s tastes. Thinking about how many colors you eat in a day may inspire your kids to do the same, which can foster a lifetime of healthy eating habits.

To find more healthy meal inspiration, including more than 500 registered dietitian- and family-tested recipes, visit produceforkids.com.

Rainbow Fruit Parfaits

Recipe courtesy of Produce for Kids
Prep time: 10 minutes
Servings: 3

  • 1/2       cup sliced strawberries
  • 2          mandarins, peeled and segmented
  • 1/2       cup chopped pineapple
  • 2          kiwis, peeled and chopped
  • 1/2       cup blueberries
  • 1/2       cup red seedless grapes
  • 1          cup vanilla Greek yogurt
  1. In parfait glasses, layer strawberries, mandarins, pineapple, kiwis, blueberries and grapes.
  2. Top each fruit parfait with yogurt.

Rainbow Buddha Bowl

Recipe courtesy of Jodi of Create Kids Club on behalf of Produce for Kids
Prep time: 30 minutes
Servings: 4

  • 1          medium sweet potato, peeled and diced
  • 1          cup broccoli florets
  • 1/2       small purple cabbage, sliced
  • 1          tablespoon olive oil
  • salt, to taste
  • pepper, to taste
  • 2          cups quinoa, cooked according to package directions
  • 1          cup red cherry tomatoes, quartered
  • 1/2       cup yellow cherry tomatoes, quartered
  • 1          avocado, sliced
  • 4          tablespoons yogurt ranch dressing
  1. Heat oven to 425° F.
  2. Place sweet potatoes, broccoli and cabbage on baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Toss with oil and season with salt and pepper, to taste. Bake 15-20 minutes, or until potatoes are soft.
  3. Divide cooked quinoa into four bowls. Top with roasted sweet potatoes, broccoli, cabbage, red tomatoes, yellow tomatoes and avocado.
  4. Drizzle with dressing.

Source: Produce for Kids

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