(Family Features) With many families spending more time than usual at home, scratch cooking trends are popular among home chefs. From homemade sourdough to elaborate multi-course dinners, the kitchen has become a place for creativity for many.
However, since summer brings all sorts of fun and outdoor activities, busy families may be looking for ways to spend less time in the kitchen without compromising on quality or flavor. Try to work smarter, not harder, and let your local grocery store do some of the heavy lifting.
Starting with pre-packaged salads, casseroles, fresh-baked breads or prepared items from the deli case, like a rotisserie chicken, opens an array of possibilities for quick family meals. For example, Signature Cafe and Signature Select, available exclusively at Albertsons and Safeway stores, can be your go-to for meal solutions, and you can find these products at a value compared to many leading national brands without giving up the quality you crave. With products available across the entire store, you can find easy-to-implement recipe hacks the whole family can enjoy.
Serving up a tasty and comforting dinner can be as easy as mixing together fresh ingredients like pre-made macaroni and cheese, rotisserie chicken, frozen broccoli and topping your dish with cracker crumbs in this Chicken and Broccoli Mac and Cheese. You’ll have food on the table in less than 30 minutes and more time to spend with family and friends.
With the resources available at your neighborhood store, you can build restaurant-quality Spicy Chicken Sandwiches with Nashville-Style Dressing at home by visiting the deli department for fried chicken and swinging by the bakery for a loaf of European-style bread. Crunchy fried chicken, cool lettuce, crisp pickles and spicy dressing including a handful of pantry staples make for the perfect flavor and texture combination.
End the day with a Neapolitan-Style Milkshake as classic flavors come together with vanilla bean ice cream, fudge striped shortbread cookies, strawberry preserves and whole milk. This ice cream treat is an indulgence that blends in a flash.
Visit Albertsons.com/exclusivebrands to shop for grocery delivery or pickup at your local store such as Albertsons, Safeway, ACME Markets, Jewel-Osco, Vons, Pavilions, Randalls, Tom Thumb, Shaw’s, Star Market, United Supermarkets and Carrs/Safeway.
Chicken and Broccoli Mac and Cheese
- Nonstick cooking spray
- 2 packages (12 ounces each) Signature Cafe Classic Macaroni and Cheese
- 1 cup frozen broccoli
- 2 Signature Cafe Whole Roasted Chicken Breasts (about 1 cup), skin removed and diced into 1/2-inch cubes
- 1/2 cup cracker crumbs
- Preheat oven to 400 F.
- Coat 6-by-9-inch baking dish with nonstick cooking spray. Add macaroni and cheese, broccoli and chicken, stirring to combine until well incorporated. Top with cracker crumbs.
- Bake 20 minutes, or until heated through.
- 4 scoops (1/2 cup each) Signature Select Vanilla or Vanilla Bean Ice Cream
- 6 Signature Select Fudge Striped Shortbread Cookies
- 4 tablespoons Signature Select Strawberry Preserves
- 1 1/2 cups whole milk, plus additional (optional)
- In blender, process ice cream, cookies, strawberry preserves and whole milk.
- If desired, add milk to achieve desired thickness.
- Serve in chilled glasses.
Spicy Chicken Sandwiches with Nashville-Style Dressing
Nashville-Style Spicy Mayonnaise:
- 1/2 cup mayonnaise
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon paprika
- 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
Spicy Chicken Sandwich:
- 1/2 cup Nashville-Style Spicy Mayonnaise, plus additional (optional)
- 4 slices Signature Select Artisan French or Italian Bread
- 2 pieces hand-breaded Signature Cafe Fried Chicken Breast, cut into slices
- 1 cup lettuce mix
- 8 sweet or dill pickle chips
- To make Nashville-Style Spicy Mayonnaise: In bowl, combine mayonnaise, cayenne pepper, paprika, garlic powder, salt and black pepper.
- To make Spicy Chicken Sandwiches: Spread Nashville-Style Spicy Mayonnaise onto bread slices. Arrange sliced chicken on half the bread slices and place lettuce and pickle chips on other half.
- Dress with additional Nashville-Style Spicy Mayonnaise, if desired. Fold sandwiches together, spear with toothpick and slice diagonally.
(Family Features) As the weather cools, spicy recipes can warm things up by satisfying your taste buds.
For example, award-winning chef Elise Wiggins brings the heat with this Fiery Beef Harissa Polpettes with Cooling Milk Goat Cheese Sauce recipe.
Inspired by her time spent cooking in Mexico and Central America, Wiggins puts a new spin on the popular polpette (Italian meatball), pairing bold seasonings with a cooling, dairy-based dipping sauce, made with pure, fresh Shamrock Farms milk.
The recipe combination is a nice addition to any seasonal gathering, and the naturally soothing proteins in milk help combat the spice of the various chiles to cool down taste buds and complement flavors. Shamrock Farms milk also provides calcium, potassium and vitamin D, delivering flavor and versatility to a balanced diet without added growth hormones.
For more recipes perfect for cooler weather, visit shamrockfarms.net.
Fiery Beef Harissa Polpettes with Cooling Milk Goat Cheese Sauce
Recipe courtesy of chef Elise Wiggins
Yield: 12 polpettes
- 1 dry ancho chile
- 2 dry guajillo chiles
- 10 dry arbol chiles
- 2 dry cayenne chiles
- hot water
- 1 tablespoon cumin seeds
- 1 tablespoon coriander seeds
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1/4 cup Shamrock Farms Heavy Cream
- 1 lemon, zest only, finely chopped
- 2 teaspoons hot smoked paprika
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 pound ground beef
- 1 cup Shamrock Farms Whole Milk
- 1 cup goat cheese
- 1/4 cup fresh mint, loosely packed and julienned
- 1/2 teaspoon sugar
- 2 whole eggs
- 1 teaspoon water
- all-purpose flour
- panko bread crumbs
- To make polpettes: Heat oven to 350° F.
- In pan, cover chiles with hot water; simmer until chiles are soft and pliable. In warm sauté pan, toast cumin and coriander until fragrant. In spice grinder, grind until seeds turn to powder.
- Remove chiles from water; reserve water. In blender, combine chiles, garlic, ground spices, tomato paste, lemon juice, heavy cream, lemon zest, hot smoked paprika, salt and 1/2 cup reserved chile water; blend until smooth, thick paste forms.
- Combine spicy harissa sauce with beef; mix well to incorporate. Roll into 2-ounce balls and place on sheet tray. Cook 10 minutes. Remove and allow to cool. Leave oven on.
- To make dipping sauce: In food processor, blend milk, goat cheese, mint and sugar. Place in dipping bowl in refrigerator until ready to serve.
- To make breading: In pan, crack eggs and add water; whip to incorporate. In separate pans, place flour and bread crumbs. Roll cooled polpettes in flour. Dust off excess. Roll in egg wash then breadcrumbs; set aside. Repeat until all polpettes are breaded.
- Place polpettes back on sheet tray. Cook until golden brown, approximately 10-12 minutes. Serve polpettes hot with chilled dipping sauce.
Note: If unable to find specific chiles, substitute any Mexican chile variety.
Source: Shamrock Farms