recipes

Meal Ideas 05 January 2022

Better-for-You Family Favorites for a Healthier Routine

(Family Features) Taking time to nurture your health and well-being starts with building healthier habits. As the seasons change, challenge yourself to make small yet consistent choices that help you and your family through transitions at school, the office or wherever your days take you.

To help you establish (or re-establish) healthy habits during mealtime and beyond, consider these tips.

Eat Meals Together

“Making time for meals together as a family provides a chance to connect and decompress,” said Bridget Wojciak, director of nutrition at Kroger Health, a national sponsor of the American Heart Association’s Healthy for Good initiative. “In fact, regular meals at home can help reduce stress, boost self-esteem and improve feelings of connection.”

Bring everyone together with a better-for-you seasonal favorite like Turkey and Bean Tostadas.

Make Time for Yourself

Chronic stress can have a negative impact on mental and physical health, but turning lost moments – like a meal by yourself spent mindlessly scrolling through social media – into mindful moments can help. Try practicing gratitude at the table by thinking of three things you’re grateful for or putting your fork down between each bite to savor the flavor and consider the nourishment you’re receiving.

Enjoy the Cooler Temperatures

Cooler temperatures can make it more enjoyable to take advantage of outdoor exercise, which is a good way to soak in vitamin D to improve your mood and boost immunity. Going for a brisk walk after mealtime (solo or with your pet), jogging and even raking leaves are examples of activities that count toward the American Heart Association’s recommended 150 minutes of moderate physical activity per week.

Visit heart.org/healthyforgood to download more heart-healthy recipes and find more tips for a healthier you in mind, body and heart.

Tuna Pasta Casserole

Recipe courtesy of the American Heart Association's Healthy for Good initiative
Servings: 4

  • 4 ounces dried whole-wheat rotini pasta (about 1 1/2 cups)
  • nonstick cooking spray
  • 16 ounces frozen mixed vegetables, thawed
  • 1 pouch (11 ounces) low-sodium chunk light tuna
  • 1 can (10 3/4 ounces) low-fat, low-sodium condensed cream of chicken soup
  • 1/2 cup chopped roasted red bell peppers
  • 1/2 cup fat-free half-and-half
  • 1 teaspoon all-purpose, salt-free seasoning blend
  • 3/4 cup crushed low-sodium, whole-grain crackers
  • 1/4 cup shredded or grated Parmesan cheese
  1. Prepare pasta according to package directions, omitting salt. Using colander, drain well. Transfer to large bowl.
  2. Preheat oven to 350 F. Lightly spray 2-quart glass baking dish with nonstick cooking spray.
    Stir mixed vegetables, tuna, soup, roasted peppers, half-and-half and seasoning blend into pasta until combined. Transfer to baking dish. Top with crackers and Parmesan cheese.
  3. Bake, uncovered, 25-30 minutes, or until casserole is warmed through and topping is golden brown.

Nutritional information per serving: 400 calories; 7 g total fat; 2.5 g saturated fat; 0 g trans fat; 2 g polyunsaturated fat; 2 g monounsaturated fat; 30 mg cholesterol; 537 mg sodium; 52 g carbohydrates; 8 g dietary fiber; 7 g sugars; 32 g protein.

Turkey and Bean Tostadas

Recipe courtesy of the American Heart Association's Healthy for Good initiative
Servings: 5

Salsa:

  • 2 cups chopped tomatoes (about 2 medium tomatoes)
  • 1 medium avocado, halved, pitted and diced
  • 1 large ear of corn, husks and silk discarded, kernels removed
  • 1-2 medium fresh jalapenos, seeds and ribs discarded, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped red onion
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice

Tostadas:

  • nonstick cooking spray
  • 5 corn tortillas (6 inches each)
  • 8 ounces ground skinless turkey breast
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1 can (15 1/2 ounces) no-salt-added black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 2 tablespoons water
  1. To make salsa: In small bowl, stir tomatoes, avocado, corn, jalapenos, onions and lime juice. Set aside.
  2. Preheat oven to 400 F.
  3. To make tostadas: Line baking sheet with aluminum foil. Lightly spray foil with nonstick cooking spray. Place tortillas on baking sheet. Lightly spray tortillas with nonstick cooking spray. Using fork, pierce tortillas several times to prevent from filling with air.
  4. Bake tortillas 5-6 minutes on each side, or until golden brown.
  5. In medium nonstick saucepan over medium-high heat, cook turkey, chili powder, cumin and coriander 5-6 minutes, or until turkey is no longer pink, stirring occasionally to turn and break up turkey.
  6. Add beans and water. Cook 5 minutes, or until beans are heated through. Using potato masher, coarsely mash beans. Remove from heat.
  7. To assemble tostadas, spread turkey mixture over each tortilla. Top with salsa.

Nutritional information per serving: 260 calories; 7.5 g total fat; 1 g saturated fat; 0 g trans fat; 1 g polyunsaturated fat; 4.5 g monounsaturated fat; 18 mg cholesterol; 60 mg sodium; 33 g carbohydrates; 8 g dietary fiber; 7 g sugars; 19 g protein.

Ginger Pumpkin Soup

Recipe courtesy of the American Heart Association's Healthy for Good initiative
Servings: 4

  • 1 1/2 teaspoons canola or corn oil
  • 1 medium onion, finely minced
  • 3/4 tablespoon minced peeled gingerroot or 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 2 medium garlic cloves, minced, or 1 teaspoon bottled minced garlic
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme, crumbled
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • 1 3/4 cups fat-free, low-sodium vegetable broth
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 cans (15 ounces each) solid-pack pumpkin
  • 1 cup fat-free milk
  • 1/4 cup fat-free sour cream (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons chopped chives (optional)
  1. In large heavy pot, heat oil over medium-high heat, swirling to coat bottom. Cook onion 6-8 minutes, or until soft, stirring occasionally.
  2. Stir in gingerroot, garlic, thyme, cinnamon, pepper and salt. Cook 1 minute, stirring constantly. Stir in flour. Pour in broth and water. Using spatula, scrape bottom of pot to dislodge any browned bits. Stir in pumpkin. Bring mixture to boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer 10 minutes.
  3. Stir in milk. Remove from heat. Ladle soup into bowls.
  4. Garnish with sour cream and chives, if desired.

Nutritional information per serving: 138 calories; 2.5 g total fat; 0 g saturated fat; 0 g trans fat; 0.5 g polyunsaturated fat; 1 g monounsaturated fat; 1 mg cholesterol; 199 mg sodium; 27 g carbohydrates; 10 g dietary fiber; 14 g sugars; 6 g protein.

Photo courtesy of Getty Images (Tuna Pasta Casserole)

Source: American Heart Association

Holiday 09 November 2021

Delightful Dishes to Dazzle Holiday Guests

(Family Features) Entertaining guests during the holidays isn’t just about a main course that calls all to the table. What often makes a festive gathering more fruitful is a spread of delicious appetizers, delightful drinks and divine desserts that keep loved ones coming back to the kitchen for more.

For appetizing dishes from the first guest at the house to the last out the door, you can heighten the flavor and appearance of favorite recipes with one simple ingredient: apples. Ranging from tart to sugary sweet, finding the right balance for your palate is key. Scent can also influence taste, especially when you have a balanced sweetness with an uplifting, fresh aroma.

Turn to an option like Envy Apples this holiday season for satisfying texture and taste with a consistently balanced, refreshing sweetness coupled with a crisp, elegant crunch. They make for an easy snack when eaten fresh out of hand but are also perfect for holding over pre-dinner appetites in small plates like this Bell-Issimo Brie Melt or Apple Stuffing Bites with Rosemary Gravy.

The versatile flavor of apples isn’t just limited to foods, however. For the adults in the room, Pumpkin Spice Apple Cider with a splash of bourbon is a seasonally appropriate way to quench thirst and break the ice. Simply omit the bourbon for a kid-friendly version so the whole party can savor a sip.

Easy to spot with their crimson red skin over a golden background that practically glows, Envy Apples offer an easy, eye-catching way to try new tastes and celebrate joyful occasions together. The bright white flesh is naturally slow to brown when sliced for a fresher flavor in sweet treats like Apple Oat Crumble and Citrus Caramel Topping for a tasty way to elevate your holiday get-togethers.

Find more sweet holiday recipes at EnvyApple.com.

Apple Oat Crumble and Citrus Caramel Topping

  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 2 Envy Apples, diced into large cubes
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup old-fashioned oats
  • 1/2 cup cold butter, diced small
  • 1/2 cup caramel
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 orange, zest only
  • 1 tablespoon orange juice
  • vanilla ice cream
  1. Preheat oven to 350 F.
  2. In bowl, stir together sugar and ground cinnamon.
  3. Toss apples in lemon juice then in cinnamon sugar mixture. Spread in 9-inch pie dish.
  4. In another bowl, stir together brown sugar, flour and oats. Using hands or fork, cut in butter until pea size crumbs form. Sprinkle evenly over apples.
  5. Bake 40-45 minutes until mixture is bubbling and golden brown. Remove from oven and let cool 15 minutes.
  6. In small pot, whisk caramel, salt, orange zest and orange juice until warm.
  7. Spoon apple oat crumble over large scoop vanilla ice cream and top with salted citrus caramel.

Apple Stuffing Bites with Rosemary Gravy

  • 1 box stovetop stuffing
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 cups diced Envy Apples
  • 1/2 onion, diced small

Gravy:

  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • 2 cups beef broth
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 20 turns fresh cracked pepper
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped rosemary
  1. Preheat broiler.
  2. Cook stuffing according to package directions; set aside and allow to cool slightly.
  3. In large saute pan, melt butter saute apples and onion until tender. Set aside to cool slightly.
  4. Stir together stuffing and apple mixture. Spread stuffing on sheet tray and allow to cool in refrigerator.
  5. After cooling, form stuffing into medium bites and place on sheet tray lined with parchment paper.
  6. Broil bites until golden brown and slightly crispy.
  7. To make gravy: In small pot, melt butter and whisk in flour. Cook flour 1 minute, whisking frequently.
  8. Whisk in beef broth, salt, pepper and Worcestershire sauce; bring to boil, whisking frequently. Remove from heat and stir in rosemary. If desired, continue gently simmering gravy to thicken.
  9. Arrange stuffing bites in serving dish and drizzle with gravy. Serve hot.

Pumpkin Spice Apple Cider

  • 1 Envy Apple, diced
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 teaspoon pumpkin spice
  • 2 ounces bourbon
  • 4 ounces pumpkin spice apple cider
  • demerara sugar
  • Envy Apple slices, for garnish
  • rosemary, for garnish
  • cinnamon stick, for garnish
  1. In pan over medium heat, saute diced apples in butter and pumpkin spice 5-10 minutes.
  2. In glass, combine bourbon and pumpkin spice apple cider; top with sauteed apples.
  3. Add demerara sugar then garnish with apple slices, rosemary and cinnamon stick.

Bell-Issimo Brie Melt

  • 1 round brie (6-8 ounces)
  • 2 Envy Apples
  • 1/4 cup walnuts
  • 1/4 cup dried cranberries
  • firm crackers
  1. Unwrap brie and place on microwave-safe dish. Cut off top of brie round and microwave 60 seconds until middle is soft.
  2. Slice apples into thick wedges.
  3. Top brie with half the apples, crushed walnuts and dried cranberries.
  4. Serve with firm crackers and remaining apple wedges.

Source: Envy Apples

Snacks 04 June 2021

Summer Snacks that Satisfy Cravings

(Family Features) Road trips, outdoor adventures and relaxing by the pool are some of summer’s most popular activities, and all can be more enjoyable by adding favorite snacks to the mix. Next time you bask in the summer sun, bring along some tasty pecan snacks that allow you stay on track with wellness goals without sacrificing those snack-time delights.

Whether you enjoy their natural sweetness straight from the bag or add them to your go-to recipes, pecans are among the lowest in carbs and highest in fiber of tree nuts, an option that’s perfect for snacking. In fact, each ounce of pecans includes 3 grams of plant-based protein and 3 grams of fiber to go with 12 grams of “good” monounsaturated fat and only 2 grams of saturated fat.

Curb your snack cravings with a savory option like Buffalo-Pecan Pimento Cheese Dip with veggies and crackers, or if something sweeter tempts your taste buds, dive into a tangy treat with these Mini Pecan Lemon Berry Tarts.

Visit AmericanPecan.com for more snacking tips and recipes.

Mini Pecan Lemon Berry Tarts

Total time: 22 minutes
Servings: 24

Mini Pecan Crusts:

  • Nonstick cooking spray
  • 2          cups pecan pieces
  • 1/4       cup butter, melted
  • 2          tablespoons sugar

Lemon Filling:

  • 1/2       cup lemon curd
  • 1/2       cup blueberries, raspberries or combination
  • powdered sugar, for dusting (optional)
  1. To make mini pecan crusts: Preheat oven to 350 F. Line mini muffin tin with paper liners or spray with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. In food processor, blend pecan pieces, butter and sugar until mixture forms coarse dough.
  3. Scoop about 2 teaspoons pecan mixture in each muffin tin. Use back of wooden spoon or fingers to press mixture evenly along bottom and up sides of each muffin cup.
  4. Bake 12 minutes, or until crusts are golden brown. Allow crusts to cool completely before removing from pan.
  5. To assemble crusts: Spoon 1 teaspoon lemon curd into each mini pecan crust. Top with one raspberry or three small blueberries. Dust with powdered sugar, if desired.

Buffalo-Pecan Pimento Cheese Dip

Total time: 15 minutes
Servings: 30

  • 1          cup raw pecan pieces
  • 1/2       pound (2 cups) sharp cheddar cheese, freshly grated
  • 1          jar (4 ounces) sliced pimentos
  • 2          tablespoons red hot sauce
  • 2          tablespoons mayo
  • 1          teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2       teaspoon fresh cracked pepper
  • 1          tablespoon chives, freshly chopped
  • veggies, for serving
  • crackers, for serving
  1. Preheat oven to 350 F.
  2. On baking sheet, spread pecans and roast 8-10 minutes, or until golden brown and fragrant, tossing once halfway through. Remove from oven and set aside to cool completely.
  3. In bowl, combine cheddar cheese, pimentos with juice, hot sauce, mayo, salt and pepper. Stir until combined. Add 3/4 of pecan pieces and mix until combined.
  4. Place dip in serving bowl and top with remaining pecan pieces and freshly chopped chives.
  5. Serve with veggies and crackers.

Source: American Pecan Council

Holiday 29 October 2020

All-Day Holiday Delights

(Family Features) The holiday season and all its celebrating often means full days of visiting family and friends, opening gifts and enjoying moments with loved ones, even if much of that interaction may take place virtually this year. With all the laughter and happiness, you’re bound to get hungry, and feeding the family throughout the day means you’ll need recipe ideas ready for the occasion.

Starting the big day with a bountiful breakfast helps begin the festivities on a high note, while appetizers help hold everyone over for the main course, sides and, of course, dessert. Consider these tasty dishes to take your holiday gatherings to new heights from morning to night.

Visit Culinary.net to find more holiday meal ideas.

One Terrific Turkey

Centering your holiday meal around a turkey cooked to golden perfection is the ideal way to serve a feast. Without the right preparation and execution, however, your bird could fall short. To ensure your holiday dinner centerpiece lives up to expectations, follow these simple tips, from purchase to plate:

1. Buy the right bird. Finding a turkey that’s just the right size for your expected party is the start to a successful gathering. One common rule of thumb is the buy 1 pound of turkey per person – so, for a 10-person meal, purchase a 10-pound turkey. Don’t forget that nearly everyone loves leftovers, so you may consider buying a few pounds more than necessary.

2. Be patient. If you opt for a frozen turkey, don’t rush the thawing process. For larger turkeys, it can take days to defrost properly.

3. Timing is everything. Finding the right amount of time for your turkey to spend in the oven is crucial but not always the easiest thing to do. For an 8-12-pound bird, aim for 2.5-3.5 hours; 12-16 pounds for 3.5-4 hours; 16-20 pounds for 4-4.5 hours, and so on. The key is bringing the turkey to a temperature reading of 170 F.

4. Let it rest. Instead of pulling the turkey out of the oven and immediately carving it, give it a chance to rest for 20-30 minutes, which allows the juices to soak into the meat and moisten it up.

An Easy and Cheesy Holiday Appetizer

If you need a last-minute appetizer or want to impress your friends, but don’t have the time to spend hours making something, consider this easy-to-make, easy-to-eat cheesy treat.

This Cheeseball recipe calls for a handful of common household ingredients like cream cheese, cheddar cheese, vegetables and Worcestershire sauce rolled together and chilled for a tasty dip served with crackers. For added flavor, it’s made using Buddig Beef, which has been feeding traditions for more than 75 years with its time-tested appetizer.

Find more holiday recipe ideas at buddig.com/recipes.

Cheeseball

Total time: 30 minutes
Servings: 10

  • 1          package (8 ounces) cream cheese, softened
  • 2          cups (8 ounces) finely shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1          can (2 1/4 ounces) sliced black olives, drained
  • 2          tablespoons minced green onion
  • 2          tablespoons minced red bell pepper
  • 1          teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/8       teaspoon pepper
  • 2          packages (4 ounces) Buddig Beef or Ham, chopped, divided
  • 1          package assorted crackers
  1. In large bowl of mixer on medium speed, beat cream cheese and cheddar cheese until creamy.
  2. Mix in black olives, green onion, red bell pepper, Worcestershire sauce, pepper and 2 ounces chopped beef until well combined.
  3. Form into ball. Wrap in plastic wrap.
  4. Chill at least 2-3 hours to allow flavors to blend.
  5. Just before serving, roll in remaining chopped beef until completely coated.
  6. Serve with assorted crackers.

Call Together Loved Ones with Cookies

A true holiday celebration calls for sharing moments with loved ones and creating memories that can last a lifetime. Crafting a sweet dessert to cap off the festivities is a perfect way to come together in the kitchen and enjoy the moment with those who matter most.

These Gingerbread Cookies made with C&H sugar can be a hallmark holiday treat that allow kids to help in the process. Once they’re out of the oven, ask little ones to help decorate the festive and delightful cookies.

Visit chsugar.com to find recipes perfect for entertaining and celebrating with family throughout the year.

Gingerbread Cookies

Recipe courtesy of
Bernice Baran
Prep time: 30 minutes
Cook time: 10-12 minutes
Yield: 24 cookies

  • 1/2       cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/2       cup C&H® Dark Brown Sugar
  • 1          large egg
  • 1/4       cup molasses
  • 1 3/4    cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2       teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/8       teaspoon salt
  • 1          teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2       teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4       teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/8       teaspoon ground cloves
  • royal icing
  1. In large bowl of electric mixer fitted with paddle attachment, cream butter and sugar about 2 minutes on medium speed until light and fluffy. Add egg and molasses; mix until well incorporated.
  2. In separate bowl, whisk flour, baking soda, salt, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves. Use mixer on low speed to add to butter mixture until combined and dough is formed.
  3. Divide dough in half, wrap with plastic film and refrigerate at least 1 hour.
  4. Preheat oven to 350 F and line baking sheets with parchment paper.
  5. Flour clean work surface. Roll dough 1/8-1/4 inches thick. Cut out shapes with desired cookie cutters.
  6. Transfer cookies to lined baking sheets and bake 10-12 minutes, or until firm. Let cookies cool on baking sheets 2-3 minutes then transfer to cooling rack. Cool completely.
  7. Decorate cookies with royal icing.

A Memorable Morning Breakfast

Holiday mornings are iconic for those moments spent together opening gifts, sharing stories and enjoying a meal. Skip the cereal and frozen foods for a spread like these Orange Eggs Benedict with a homemade hollandaise sauce.

With six servings, it’s perfect for a family breakfast to fill empty stomachs after a morning of gift-giving. Plus, kids can join in on the fun by helping make the hollandaise, which simply requires mixing a few ingredients before pouring over the completed dish.

Find more breakfast recipes at Culinary.net.

Orange Eggs Benedict

Serves: 6
Orange Hollandaise:

  • 2          egg yolks
  • 1          orange, juice only
  • 1/2       teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2       cup unsalted butter, melted
  • water
  • 1          tablespoon white vinegar
  • 8          eggs
  • 1/2       cup butter, softened
  • 6          French baguette slices, 3/4-inch thick each
  • 6          thick slices ham
  • 1/2       cup orange marmalade
  • orange zest, for garnish
  1. To make Orange Hollandaise: In small bowl, blend egg yolks, orange juice and salt until combined. Gradually add melted butter into egg mixture while blending. Set aside.
  2. In skillet, add water halfway up sides. Add vinegar. Bring to simmer. Break eggs into water to poach. Cook 3-4 minutes until whites are cooked through and yolks are still runny. Using slotted spoon, remove eggs and drain on paper towels.
  3. Spread butter on one side of bread slices. Place bread in skillet and cook until golden brown. Add ham to same skillet and cook until browned on both sides.
  4. To assemble, spread bread slices with orange marmalade. Top each with one slice cooked ham and one poached egg. Pour hollandaise over eggs and garnish with orange zest.


Photo courtesy of Getty Images (Holiday table)

Buddig 
C&H

Holiday 20 October 2020

A Memorable Holiday Menu

(Family Features) Holiday gatherings, even in a time when smaller groups are encouraged, take on special meaning for many families. Part of the joy comes from the food that’s shared among loved ones from appetizers and sides to the main course.

This year, you can enjoy those meaningful moments with your closest family members and friends by putting together a menu that keeps smiles on faces from the first bite to the last. Start with your favorite among the nearly endless appetizer options that symbolize the season then enjoy a tender tri-tip alongside bacon-wrapped asparagus and a twist on classic, roasted potatoes.

Visit Culinary.net to find more holiday menu ideas.

Start Your Seasonal Celebration with Small Bites

While main courses, sides and desserts may be what holiday memories are made of, you can calm family members’ and guests’ appetites with an array of appetizers like these:

Meatballs
Stuffed mushrooms
Stuffed peppers
Sliced cheese
Sliced meats
Crackers
Spinach dip
Cheesy bread
Sliders
Little smokies
Fresh fruit and vegetables

A Simply Tasty Side

Many recipes commonly associated with the holidays are accompanied by lengthy ingredient lists or hours spent in the kitchen. However, all that time and effort doesn’t have to be used on this year’s side dish when you opt for a simple yet mouthwatering option.

You can feel good about what you’re feeding your family this holiday season while saving prep time by serving this Bacon-Wrapped Asparagus made with Coleman Natural bacon, which contains no artificial ingredients or preservatives and is sourced from American family farms that humanely raise their animals with no antibiotics or added hormones. Whether it’s served as a side dish or an appetizer, it calls for just a handful of everyday ingredients for a dish you can be proud of.

Visit ColemanNatural.com/Recipes for more seasonal recipe inspiration.

Bacon-Wrapped Asparagus

Servings: 10

  • 20        asparagus stalks
  • 10        slices Coleman Natural Hickory Smoked Bacon
  • 2          tablespoons olive oil
  • 1          teaspoon salt
  • 1/2       teaspoon pepper
  1. Preheat oven to 400 F. Line rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Wrap 2 asparagus stalks with 1 slice bacon. Repeat with remaining asparagus and bacon. Place bundles on baking sheet. Drizzle asparagus ends with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
  3. Bake until asparagus is cooked through and bacon is crisp, about 20 minutes.

A Tender Holiday Tri-Tip

Centering your holiday meal around a flavorful cut of meat can make the celebration truly memorable, especially when it’s cooked to perfection over the hot flame of a grill.

This year, take your family’s main course to the next level with a Garlic Herb Tri-Tip lightly seasoned with garlic, thyme, rosemary, salt and pepper to let the naturally flavorful New Zealand grass-fed beef speak for itself. Because the animals roam and graze freely over lush green hills and pastures year-round, New Zealand grass-fed beef is leaner, more finely textured and tastes just as nature intended.

Find more recipes and holiday meal ideas at beefandlambnz.com.

Garlic Herb Tri-Tip

Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 30 minutes
Servings: 6

  • 1          New Zealand grass-fed beef tri-tip (2 1/2-3 pounds)
  • 1/4       cup olive oil
  • 2          tablespoons minced garlic
  • 3          tablespoons fresh chopped thyme
  • 3          tablespoons fresh chopped rosemary
  • 1          teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2    teaspoons black pepper
  1. Preheat grill to high heat.
  2. Rub tri-tip with olive oil. Add minced garlic and use hands to evenly distribute.
  3. Combine chopped thyme, rosemary, salt and pepper; cover oiled tri-tip on both sides with spice blend.
  4. Place tri-tip on hottest part of grill and sear 2-3 minutes.
  5. Flip tri-tip and transfer to indirect heat. Continue grilling until internal temperature reaches 135 F for medium-rare.
  6. Transfer meat to platter, cover with foil and let rest 10 minutes.
  7. Slice across the grain and serve.

An Easy but Impressive Side

Every holiday meal comes with plenty of traditional and family-favorite dishes, and one of the most common on tables is potatoes. Whether they’re roasted, mashed or anything in-between, they’re among the most versatile options for the holidays.

This year, you can save time on seasonal favorites with Creamer potatoes from The Little Potato Company. They are ready to use, with no washing or peeling required, and they’re small and consistent in size so they cook quickly.

Try them roasted, boiled, smashed or mashed whether you’re making a quick weeknight dinner or getting a festive meal on the table. This holiday season, try these Little Hasselback Potatoes for a twist on the classic roasted variety. For an easy cooking hack, slice the potatoes on a wooden spoon to prevent cutting all the way through.

Visit littlepotatoes.com for more holiday recipe inspiration.

Little Hasselback Potatoes

Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 20 minutes
Servings: 8-12

  • 1          bag (3 pounds) The Little Potato Company Holiday Blend
  • 10        sprigs thyme, removed from stem
  • 6          sprigs parsley, chopped
  • 4          cloves garlic, minced
  • 6          tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1          teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2       teaspoon pepper
  • sour cream (optional)
  • cooked bacon pieces (optional)
  • green onion slices (optional)
  1. Preheat oven to 400 F.
  2. Lay wooden spoon flat on solid surface and place one potato in spoon. Using paring knife, slice 1/8-inch thick slices along length of each potato one at a time.
  3. In bowl, toss potatoes, thyme, parsley, garlic, olive oil, salt and pepper. Place potatoes on parchment-lined baking sheet, cut sides down. Bake 10 minutes, flip and bake 10 minutes, or until soft.
  4. Serve with sour cream, bacon and green onion, if desired.

Photo courtesy of Getty Images (Holiday small bites)

Source: Coleman Natural Foods
Beef + Lamb New Zealand
The Little Potato Company

Meal Ideas 15 March 2019

Easy Al Fresco Entertaining

(Family Features) Dining out in the fresh air always seems to turn even a simple meal into an event. You can turn your next dinner party into a memorable event with these simple and delicious recipes.

- Rosemary Almond Crackers make a terrific appetizer served alongside cheese or a savory dip.
- Spiced Almonds can be served in a martini glass for a stylish addition to any party.
- Almond Crusted Shrimp are deceptively easy - and distinctly delicious.
- Banana Almond Kahlúa Frappés are a cool and creamy way to finish off the evening.

California Almonds aren't just delicious, crunchy, and ideal for any snack or mealtime, they're also a nutritious solution that adds a burst of flavor and texture to any recipe.

For more entertaining tips and recipes, visit AlmondBoard.com.

Nutrition Made Easy - and Delicious

California Almonds are an excellent source of Vitamin E (35% DV), magnesium (20% DV), manganese (.648 mg), fiber (3.5 g), protein (6 g), copper (0.3 mg), phosphorus (137 mg), and riboflavin (0.3 mg). Plus, a one-ounce serving has 13 grams of good unsaturated fats, just 1 gram of saturated fat, and is always cholesterol- and gluten-free.

Here are some more ideas for making your next gathering a little more special - and a little more nutritious.

- Craving something sweet? Try adding toasted sliced almonds and crumbled biscotti to your favorite gelato.
- In a nonstick skillet over medium-low heat, toss whole natural or slivered almonds in a small amount of vegetable oil until golden. Add your choice of dried herbs and then sprinkle over salads, vegetables, or pasta for the perfect accent. And - if you don't have time to make your own, grab your favorite flavored almonds from your local grocer.

Rosemary Almond Crackers

Created by Elana Amsterdam author of "The Gluten-Free Almond Flour Cookbook"
Makes 24 crackers

  • 1 3/4 cups blanched almond flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh rosemary
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 egg
  1. In large bowl, combine almond flour, salt and rosemary. In medium bowl, whisk together olive oil and egg. Stir wet ingredients into almond flour mixture until thoroughly combined.
  2. Roll dough into a ball and press between 2 sheets of parchment paper to 1/8-inch thickness. Remove top piece of parchment paper.
  3. Transfer the bottom piece with rolled out dough onto baking sheet. Cut dough into 2-inch squares with a knife or pizza cutter.
  4. Bake at 350°F for 12 to 15 minutes, until lightly golden. Let crackers cool on baking sheet for 30 minutes, then serve.

Almond Crusted Shrimp

Created by Almond Board of California
Makes 4 servings

  • 1/2 cup ground almonds
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoons minced fresh parsley, or 1/2 teaspoon dried
  • 1/2 teaspoon seafood seasoning
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 pound (61- to 70-count) shrimp, with tails and veins removed
  • 1 egg white
  • 2 tablespoons almond or corn oil, divided
  • 1 lemon, cut into wedges
  1. Stir together almonds, flour, parsley, seafood seasoning, salt and pepper.
  2. Dip each shrimp in egg white, then in almond mixture; lay on a baking sheet or platter until ready to cook. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large skillet; grill shrimp in batches on medium heat, cooking 3 to 4 minutes, turning once, until pink and golden. Use remaining 1 tablespoon oil as necessary.
  3. Serve shrimp immediately, accompanied by lemon wedges.

Spiced Almonds

Created by Ellie Krieger author of "So Easy: Luscious Healthy Recipes for Every Meal of the Week"
Makes 8 servings

  • 1 large egg white
  • 2 teaspoons sweet paprika
  • 2 teaspoons dark brown sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 2 cups natural almonds
  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. In large bowl whisk together egg white, paprika, sugar, salt, Worcestershire sauce, and cayenne pepper until well combined. Add almonds and toss until evenly coated.
  3. Transfer almonds to parchment lined baking tray; spread out to form a single layer. Bake for 20 minutes, until the coating is crisp. Almonds will continue to crisp as they cool. Allow to cool completely then break up any nuts that are stuck together. Nuts will keep up to 5 days in an airtight container.

Banana Almond Kahlúa Frappé

Created by Almond Board of California
Makes 4 servings

  • 1 cup crushed ice or 1 1/2 cups ice cubes
  • 2 medium bananas, cut into chunks
  • 4 ounces almond milk
  • 2 ounces Kahlúa or other coffee liqueur
  • 1/2 ounce Irish cream liqueur
  • 4 whole natural or blanched almonds
  1. Combine ice, bananas, almond milk and liqueurs in a blender; blend until smooth. Divide among 4 old-fashioned glasses and garnish each with an almond; serve immediately.

Source: California Almond Board

Appetizers & Sides 21 February 2019

Bite-Size Ideas for Easy Entertaining

(Family Features) Whether you’re prepping for an extravagant party or an impromptu get-together, being prepared with cupboard staples and entertaining tricks can help you take your gathering to the next level.

Make menu planning a breeze and put a unique twist on your party from start to finish with these great ideas from the experts at Dare Foods:

Snacks with flair. Use geometric cookie-cutters to bring thoughtful detail to essential hors d'oeuvres like crackers, cheese and melon slices.

Vivid votive. Fill mason jars with water and add slices of lemon or lime along with sprigs of rosemary. Float a tea light on top and place around the yard or on tables for a beautiful way to decorate your outdoor space.

Sparkler sendoff. Light up the night with festive sparklers for endless entertainment. Place them in a decorative pail and sit back as guests enjoy the photo opp.

When it comes to bite-size snacks, crackers are one pantry basic you can dress up or down for a wide range of party-worthy treats in minutes. For example, garden-fresh fixings atop crisp crackers make for light canapes that celebrate the best of summer flavors. Just start with one of Dare’s mouthwatering crackers, loaded with crunch and packed with flavor, and pile on the goodness.

If you’re looking for an elegant appetizer to wow dinner guests, a robust, crisp cracker makes the perfect base for a sweet corn salad and luxurious scallops. Or, for a delicious sweet treat, use Dare’s sweet potato cracker to lend a unique twist to a classic s’mores recipe.

Find more creative cracker recipes for your next event at darefoods.com.

Sauteed Corn, Feta, Cherry Tomato and Scallop Crackers

Prep time: 15 minutes
Servings: 10

  • 2       ears corn
  • 2       teaspoons vegetable oil
  • salt
  • 10     large scallops
  • 1/4    cup crumbled feta cheese
  • 10     cherry tomatoes, quartered 
  • 2       tablespoons finely sliced basil
  • pepper
  • 10     Brenton Vinta crackers
  1. Slice corn off of cob.
  2. Heat vegetable oil in pan until hot, saute corn until golden brown, 3-5 minutes. Set aside to cool.
  3. In another pan, heat vegetable oil until hot. Salt scallops then sear for 2-3 minutes on each side until golden brown. Slice in half to create 10 round scallop discs.
  4. Mix corn, feta, tomatoes and basil together. Season with salt and pepper.
  5. To compile, place spoonful of corn salad on each cracker. Top with 2 pieces of scallop and 1 sprig of basil.

Marshmallow, Chocolate, Sweet Potato Crackers

Prep time: 10 minutes
Servings: 10

  • 10     large marshmallows
  • 20     Breton sweet potato and ancient grain crackers
  • 1/4    cup chocolate chips, divided
  1. Heat broiler to low (set rack in top two-thirds of oven if low-heat setting is unavailable).
  2. Place marshmallows on one cracker and broil 1-3 minutes, or until they begin to brown and soften.
  3. Remove from oven and place 1 teaspoon chocolate chips onto hot marshmallows.
  4. Let sit 1 minute to allow chocolate to soften.
  5. Place cracker on top and enjoy.

Source: Dare Foods

Snacks 17 January 2019

Smarter Snacking with Nutrition in Mind

(Family Features) Planning health-conscious New Year’s resolutions typically includes cutting back on unhealthy foods during meals from breakfast to dinner. However, it’s also important to cut out sugary, calorie-laden snacks that can counteract all your hard work throughout the rest of the day.

Rather than skipping snacks entirely, it’s possible to instead incorporate nutritious options that pack protein to help you recharge without going overboard on calories, sodium and sugars. Opt for quick bites like Baked White Bean and Artichoke Dip paired with light, crunchy, low-sugar crackers to get the fuel you need between meals.

This snack idea can be especially filling yet nutritious when you dip with an option like gluten-free, non-GMO Crunchmaster Protein Snack Crackers, made with wholesome ingredients crafted to fit healthy, active lifestyles. With five grams of plant-based protein per serving, the cholesterol-free crackers can aid in providing energy without unnecessary sugars.

As you take steps to incorporate a healthier lifestyle in the New Year, be sure to take into account healthy activities along with nutritious eating habits from the first meal of the day to the last, and each snack in-between.

For more nutritious snacking ideas and recipes, visit crunchmaster.com.

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Baked White Bean and Artichoke Dip with Crackers

Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 15 minutes
Servings: 8

  • 1          can (15 ounces) organic white cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1          can (14 fluid ounces) water-packed artichoke hearts, drained
  • 1/3       cup olive oil
  • 2          tablespoons finely chopped fresh chives, divided
  • 1          teaspoon lemon zest
  • 1          tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1          tablespoon white wine vinegar
  • 2          cloves garlic
  • 1/2       teaspoon salt
  • 1/4       teaspoon pepper
  • pinch of cayenne pepper
  • 1          package (3.54 ounces) Crunchmaster Protein Snack Crackers in Roasted Garlic flavor
  1. Heat oven to 400° F.
  2. In food processor, puree beans, artichokes, olive oil, 1 tablespoon chives, lemon zest, lemon juice, vinegar, garlic, salt, pepper and cayenne until smooth. Scrape into 4-cup baking dish and smooth over top.
  3. Bake 15-20 minutes, or until heated through. Sprinkle with remaining chives and serve with crackers.

Tip: Substitute parsley or mint for chives, if desired.

Nutrition information per serving: 200 calories; 10 g fat; 1 g saturated fat; 580 mg sodium; 21 g carbohydrates; 4 g fiber; 1 g sugar; 7 g protein.

Source: Crunchmaster

Appetizers & Sides 11 June 2018

Host a Better-for-You Barbecue

(Family Features) A traditional backyard barbecue is typically filled with a wide array of tempting foods that make it hard to keep a healthy eating plan on track. With a few simple modifications to your menu, you can transform your grilling party into a spread of better-for-you foods you can still enjoy.

Get creative on the grill. An easy swap like chicken or pork instead of burgers and brats is an instant nutrition boost. Use wood chips or a marinade to create a main dish so tasty you’ll forget it’s a health-conscious choice.

Put produce front and center. There’s no time like summer to enjoy the bounty of the garden, so pile on the veggies in place of dense, calorie-laden sides. A crisp, refreshing salad, lightly seasoned veggies on the grill and even fresh raw veggies with a light yogurt dip can all be healthier additions to your barbecue menu.

Make apps amazing. A health-conscious meal doesn’t have to mean eliminating entire courses. Appetizers while you wait for the grill to heat are practically a requirement, after all. Instead of the typical rich, creamy dips, try a lighter approach, like these cracker canapes. Add a special touch with Crunchmaster crackers, which are gluten-free, non-GMO and full of flavor. Made with wholesome ingredients from trusted sources and available in Sea Salt, Roasted Vegetable, Applewood Smoked BBQ and Aged White Cheddar flavors, these snacks are crafted to fit healthy lifestyles. 

Find more delicious ideas for summer entertaining at crunchmaster.com.
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Grilled Watermelon, Feta and Balsamic Cracker Canapes

Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 5 minutes
Servings: 4

  • 4          watermelon wedges (1/2-inch thick slices, 4 inches wide at base)
  • 16        Crunchmaster Multi-Grain Sea Salt Crackers
  • 1/4       cup finely crumbled feta cheese
  • 1/4       cup prepared balsamic reduction
  • 2          tablespoons finely chopped fresh mint
  1. Heat grill to medium-high; grease grate well. Grill watermelon wedges, turning once, 3-5 minutes, or until grill-marked on both sides. Cut each watermelon wedge into four smaller wedges.
  2. Top each cracker with watermelon wedge and sprinkle with feta. Drizzle with balsamic reduction. Garnish with fresh mint.

Tip: Add finely chopped Kalamata olives for a tangy twist.

Source: Crunchmaster

Casseroles 03 March 2017

Easy Tuna Casserole

(Culinary.net) From work to homework, weekdays can often be extremely busy and sometimes stressful for many families, especially if you have little ones running around. If family means everything to you but time spent with those loved ones feels slim with the chaos of the modern-day world, one easy fix is to simplify your dinner routine.

Sometimes a family dinner is not the first thing on your mind, but you can bring everyone together with something quick and effortless when you’re in pinched for time. It’s a one-pot meal, and less mess means more time to focus on your daily tasks at hand.

With this Easy Tuna Casserole, you can call everyone to the table with a classic and simple meal that is sure to have everyone asking for a second helping. It features soft, perfectly cooked noodles, cheese and veggies, plus a hint of seafood.

This recipe needs only a handful of ingredients and requires just a few steps to make a full meal for your hungry family in a few moments.

Start by boiling the vegetables and noodles together in one pot then add dairy products, mix in your protein (a flavorful, hearty tuna) and top with crackers for some crunch. It has texture, vegetables to provide nutrients for growing kids and meets pretty much every mark for family dinner time.

Kids typically love the cheesy flavor and crunch provided by the cracker topping. Plus, it’s a great way to get them to try foods they normally wouldn’t eat, like tuna.

It’s a classic, easy meal that can leave you wishing that making dinner was that simple every night. Cook this delicious meal and get it on the table so you can enjoy what matters most: the ones you love.

Find more recipes and family meals at Culinary.net.

Watch video to see how to make this recipe!

Easy Tuna Casserole2

Easy Tuna Casserole

  • 6 cups boiling water
  • 3 cups uncooked macaroni
  • 1 cup frozen vegetables (corn, carrots and peas)
  • 4 TBS butter
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 cheese powder packet
  • 1 can of tuna in water (drained)
  • 8 - 10 buttery crackers rounds (crushed)
  1. Boil water in sauce pan, then add in macaroni. Stirring ocassionaly. Boiling 8-10 minutes.
  2. Add frozen vegetables 2 minutes before the end of boil time.
  3. Drain and return to sauce pan.
  4. Add in butter, milk and cheese.  Stir until mixed.
  5. Pour into casserole dish.
  6. Add tuna and stir into macaroni mixture.
  7. Sprinkle crushed buttery crackers over macaroni mixture.
  8. Serve immediately.

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