recipes

Holiday 13 October 2020

Smoked Salmon for Holiday Soirees

(Family Features) Delicious, colorful and versatile, smoked salmon can make it easy to elevate your holiday festivities, which might look shockingly different this year.

Whether it's your family or a small group of friends, you can feel good about serving sustainable smoked salmon to your guests. Highlight smoked salmon at socially distanced gatherings with these recipes and tips from chef Nora Pouillon, a James Beard Lifetime Achievement Award winner, and her daughter, Blue Circle Foods product director Nina Damato.

Ready, Set, Serve
There's no need to prep or cook smoked salmon - it's sliced and ready to eat so you can impress your guests in no time with a colorful smoked salmon platter.

1. Arrange smoked salmon layers on a decorative platter.
2. Garnish with your favorite charcuterie sides like olives, capers, pickles and sliced lemon, tomato, cucumber or radish.
3. Season with dill sprigs, sea salt and fresh cracked pepper.
4. Serve with an assortment of crackers or buttered triangles of crustless brown bread.

A Seafood Superfood
Smoked salmon is a nutritional powerhouse full of antioxidants, omega-3s and protein. A 2-ounce serving of Blue Circle smoked salmon contains 1,000 mg of health-boosting omega-3s, which meets the daily requirements recommended by the FDA's 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans. To make the most of a healthy choice, look for smoked salmon that does not contain sugar or added preservatives.

A Sustainable Protein
To ensure your smoked salmon is sourced with the environment and your health in mind, purchase products that are free from antibiotics, GMOs, added hormones and synthetic colorants.

A Dietary Chameleon
From traditional tastes to keto, gluten-free or dairy-free canapes, smoked salmon fits the bill. Its clean ingredient profile means it satisfies many common dietary restrictions.

For mouthwatering appetizers, try Pouillon's Smoked Salmon Cucumber Boats. If you enjoy pairing smoked salmon with traditional flavors like cream cheese and capers, consider her Smoked Salmon Rolls with Cream Cheese and Caper Filling.

To access more recipes and tips, visit bluecirclefoods.com.

Smoked Salmon Rolls with Cream Cheese and Caper Filling

Recipe courtesy of chef Nora Pouillon

  • 4 ounces Blue Circle Smoked Salmon
  • olive oil
  • 6 ounces cream cheese
  • 2 tablespoons small capers, drained, plus additional for serving, divided (optional)
  • 1/2 medium red onion, finely diced
  • 1 tablespoon chopped Italian parsley
  • salt, to taste
  • pepper, to taste
  1. Layer smoked salmon slices on lightly oiled aluminum foil, overlapping slightly.
  2. Mix cream cheese with capers, onion and parsley. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.
  3. Place thick line of cream cheese mixture along long side of salmon.
  4. Roll up salmon carefully with help of aluminum foil, similar to sushi roll.
  5. Chill in refrigerator 2-3 hours or overnight to firm up roll.
  6. To serve, use sharp knife to slice salmon roll into 1/2-inch long pieces.
  7. Place rolls on serving plate and garnish with additional capers, if desired.

 

Smoked Salmon Cucumber Boats

Recipe courtesy of chef Nora Pouillon

  • 1 English cucumber (about 1 1/2 inches thick and 10 inches long)
  • 1 medium tomato, seeded and cut into tiny pieces
  • 1/4 cup scallions, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon dill sprigs, finely chopped, plus additional for serving (optional), divided
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 4 ounces Blue Circle Smoked Salmon, chopped or pulsed
  • salt, to taste
  • pepper, to taste
  1. Slice cucumber in half lengthwise and use spoon to scoop out seeds. If cucumber skin is too thick, peel before slicing.
  2. Gently mix tomato, scallions, 1 tablespoon dill, lemon juice and smoked salmon until combined. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.
  3. Fill cucumber halves with smoked salmon mixture.
  4. Slice cucumber boats into 1/2-3/4-inch pieces crosswise.
  5. To serve, place pieces on platter and garnish with additional dill, if desired.

Source: Blue Circle Foods

Holiday 05 October 2020

Add Fruity Flavor and Fun to Holiday Desserts

(Family Features) Making the holiday season special is an important tradition for many families, and it’s likely to take on heightened importance this year with gatherings, celebrations and festivities taking on a different look than years past. One family-favorite way to create holiday magic is through delicious desserts that can be made and enjoyed together.

Don’t be afraid to try something new this year by turning to foods typically associated with warmer weather. For example, watermelon is available year-round and makes a surprisingly nutritious, flavorful addition to your seasonal spread, whether it’s the main ingredient or included in recipes from entrees to sides and drinks to desserts.

For a kid-friendly, tasty treat, ask your little ones to help make these Holiday Watermelon Cutouts. Because they only require a few ingredients and plenty of creativity, they’re perfect for getting the whole family involved. Or try this Watermelon and Blueberry Cheesecake as the highlight at your dessert table with its creamy, fruity flavor and eye-popping looks.

To find more holiday dessert solutions and other sweet recipe ideas, visit watermelon.org.

Holiday Watermelon Cutouts

Recipe courtesy of the National Watermelon Promotion Board

  • 1/2       watermelon, cut into 1/2-inch thick disks
  • vanilla frosting or yogurt
  • sprinkles, for decorating
  1. Using holiday cookie cutters, cut shapes out of watermelon disks.
  2. Decorate watermelon shapes with yogurt.
  3. Top with sprinkles.

Watermelon and Blueberry Cheesecake

Recipe courtesy of the National Watermelon Promotion Board
Servings: 12

Cheesecake:

  • Nonstick cooking spray
  • 1/3       cup graham cracker crumbs (2 graham crackers)
  • 24        ounces fat-free cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 8          ounces low-fat cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 1          cup white sugar
  • 3/4       cup no-calorie sugar substitute
  • 3/4       cup fat-free half-and-half
  • 1/4       cup fresh lemon juice
  • 2          tablespoons lemon peel, finely grated
  • 2          teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2    cups liquid egg substitute (equivalent of 6 eggs)

Watermelon-Blueberry Sauce:

  • 3          cups watermelon juice, with pulp
  • 6          teaspoons cornstarch
  • 6          tablespoons lemon juice
  • 3          tablespoons sugar
  • 3          tablespoons no-calorie sugar substitute
  • 1-1 1/2             teaspoons lemon extract
  • 2          cups diced watermelon
  • 3          cups blueberries
  1. To make cheesecake: Preheat oven to 350 F.
  2. Spray bottom and sides of 9-inch springform pan. Sprinkle graham cracker crumbs in pan and tilt to spread evenly over bottom and sides, leaving extra crumbs on bottom.
  3. Using electric mixer, beat fat-free cream cheese, low-fat cream cheese, sugar and sugar substitute until creamy and well-blended. Slowly add half-and-half, lemon juice, lemon peel and vanilla; continue beating. Add egg substitute until mixture is thoroughly blended and creamy. Pour into crumb-lined pan.
  4. Place springform pan in large roasting pan. Pour enough water into roasting pan to come halfway up sides of springform pan. Bake cheesecake until firm, slightly golden and top is cracked, about 1 hour, 25 minutes. Remove springform pan from water and refrigerate, uncovered, until cold, about 3 hours or overnight.
  5. To make watermelon-blueberry sauce: In blender, whip watermelon juice, cornstarch, lemon juice, sugar and sugar substitute until smooth. Pour into small saucepan over medium-high heat and bring to gentle boil until topping begins to thicken. Remove from heat and place in refrigerator to cool. Just before serving, add lemon extract, diced watermelon and blueberries; stir to thoroughly blend.
  6. To serve, run knife around sides of cheesecake and remove springform pan sides. Top each slice with generous helping of watermelon-blueberry sauce.

Source: National Watermelon Promotion Board

Dessert 12 August 2020

Enjoy Seasonal Favorites with Fall Comfort Foods

(Family Features) While this autumn season will likely look different than years past, wholesome meals celebrating fall flavors provide something to look forward to. Eating foods like walnuts, colorful fruits and vegetables, and whole grains can be a solution for improving overall well-being in an enjoyable, delicious way.

Along with fall favorites like root vegetables, Brussels sprouts, apples and cranberries, kitchen staples like walnuts also have their own prime season. Walnuts harvested during autumn from the fertile soils of California supply more than 99% of walnuts in the U.S. and more than half of the world’s walnut trade.

Each harvest produces enough walnuts for you to enjoy the tasty and nutrient rich benefits year-round. Pro tip: Storing them in the fridge or freezer maintains freshness longer.

Welcome the flavors of fall with this Apple Pear Walnut Crisp and Pumpkin Walnut Sage Risotto, and find more recipes to celebrate the season at walnuts.org/fall-favorites.

Apple Pear Walnut Crisp

Total time: 1 hour, 5 minutes
Servings: 4

Walnut Crisp Topping:

  • 1 1/2    cups California walnuts, divided
  • 1/4       cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/3       cup brown sugar
  • 1/2       cup quick-cooking oats
  • 1/2       teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2       cup butter, chilled and sliced into 1-tablespoon pieces

Apple Pear Filling:

  • 3          Granny Smith apples, peeled and sliced into 1/4-inch slices
  • 2          D’Anjou pears, peeled and sliced into 1/4-inch slices
  • 1/2       cup granulated sugar
  • 2          tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1          teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/8       teaspoon salt
  • 1          tablespoon lemon juice
  • ice cream (optional)
  • caramel sauce (optional)
  1. To make walnut crisp topping: In food processor, pulse 1 cup walnuts until finely ground.
  2. In small bowl, combine ground walnuts, flour, brown sugar, oats and cinnamon. Cut butter into mixture until coarse crumb forms.
  3. Coarsely chop remaining walnuts and stir into crumb mixture until incorporated. Set aside.
  4. To make apple pear filling: Preheat oven to 350 F.
  5. In bowl, toss apples, pears, sugar, cornstarch, cinnamon, salt and lemon juice.
  6. Place fruit mixture in bottom of 10-inch cast-iron pan or baking dish.
  7. Sprinkle walnut crisp topping mixture over fruit.
  8. Bake 45 minutes, or until fruit mixture is hot and bubbly and topping is golden brown.
  9. Top with ice cream and caramel sauce, if desired.

Pumpkin Walnut Sage Risotto

Total time: 30 minutes
Servings: 6

Risotto:

  • 6          cups vegetable stock
  • 1/4       cup olive oil
  • 1/2       large yellow onion, finely diced
  • 1 1/2    cups Arborio rice
  • 1          cup pumpkin puree
  • 1/4       cup grated pecorino cheese

Walnut Sage Pesto:

  • 2          cloves fresh garlic
  • 1          cup California walnuts
  • 1/2       cup fresh sage leaves, plus additional for garnish, if desired
  • 1/2       cup grated pecorino cheese, plus additional for garnish, if desired
  • 2          tablespoons olive oil
  • kosher salt, to taste
  • black pepper, to taste
  1. To make risotto: In medium pot over medium-low heat, heat vegetable stock.
  2. In large, heavy pot over medium heat, heat olive oil. Add onion and cook, stirring often, 5 minutes, or until soft.
  3. Add rice and cook, stirring often, 2-3 minutes until rice is translucent except for white center.
  4. Add hot stock 1 cup at a time, stirring frequently. As stock is absorbed, add another cup. Continue until all stock has been incorporated and rice is cooked al dente, about 20 minutes. Stir in pumpkin and cheese.
  5. To make walnut sage pesto: In bowl of food processor, combine garlic and walnuts; pulse until minced. Add 1/2 cup sage leaves, 1/2 cup cheese and olive oil; pulse until coarse pesto forms. Season with salt, to taste.
  6. In final few minutes, add 1/2 cup walnut sage pesto to risotto, stirring until well incorporated. Season with kosher salt and black pepper, to taste. Garnish with remaining pesto, cheese and fresh sage, if desired.

Source: California Walnuts

Seafood 28 July 2020

New Food Trends Can Save Time and Money

(Family Features) As families continue to adjust their meal routines amidst a worldwide pandemic, there are trends you and your loved ones can follow to improve your general health, maintain a budget and spend more time together.

Home cooking: According to a study conducted by Hunter Public Relations on how COVID-19 has changed home cooking, 54% of Americans are cooking more and 50% have more confidence in the kitchen. Many, perhaps for the first time, found that cooking at home and learning cooking techniques could be a fun family activity.

Trusting frozen: Frozen foods have seen a renaissance in 2020. Many families discovered that new technologies allow frozen foods to deliver innovations in flavors, recipes, authenticity and affordability without compromising taste. For example, Aqua Star’s frozen Cutting Board Meal Kits are available at grocers nationwide and feature full chef-inspired meals like Chipotle Shrimp Street Tacos and Southwest Chili-Lime Tilapia.

Saving money: It’s common knowledge for many consumers that eating at or ordering takeout from a restaurant is more expensive than cooking at home. Eating at home showed families just how much they could save, and this trend is likely to continue. According to a Simon-Kucher Restaurants Survey, 26% of consumers who ate meals from casual restaurants before the pandemic anticipate eating meals primarily at home for up to a year after lockdown.

More seafood: According to a national survey by Aqua Star, one of the country’s largest seafood companies, 75% of Americans want to eat more seafood. Seafood provides nutritional benefits for a multitude of recipes, but many people don’t know how to prepare it. One of the easiest ways to introduce your family to seafood is through familiar comfort food recipes and convenient one-pan meals.

Online grocery shopping: Nearly daily trips to the grocery store can be an expensive habit since impulse buying is a bane to healthy eating and saving money. As online grocery shopping grows in popularity, it provides families with a convenient, time-saving way to keep must-haves on hand without overspending at the store.

Dinners with family: After years of families grabbing meals on the run, sheltering in place has brought many back to the dining room table. For a simple family meal that focuses on frozen seafood and pantry staples, try this recipe for Shrimp Scampi that involves just a few steps of preparation that can even allow kids to help in the process. If you don’t have time to cook, Aqua Star’s Shrimp Scampi MicroSteam Bowl is a simple way to enjoy the same flavors in minutes, from the microwave, with no clean-up required.

Find more at-home seafood solutions at aquastar.com.

Shrimp Scampi

Cook time: 20 minutes
Servings: 4

  • 8          ounces pasta linguine
  • 2          tablespoons butter
  • 2          tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 4          garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2       cup dry white wine or seafood broth
  • 3/4       teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1          dash crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1/4       teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 1/2    pounds large or extra-large Aqua Star shrimp, shelled
  • 1/3       cup parsley, chopped
  • 1/2       lemon, juice only
  1. Cook pasta according to package directions.
  2. In large skillet, melt butter and oil. Add garlic and saute until fragrant. Add wine or broth, salt, red pepper flakes and black pepper. Bring to simmer and reduce by half.
  3. Add shrimp and saute until shrimp turn pink and opaque, approximately 2-4 minutes depending on size. Stir in parsley, lemon juice and cooked pasta. 

 

Photo courtesy of Getty Images (family dinner)

Source: Aqua Star

One Dish Meals 14 July 2020

Master Family Meals with Ease

(Family Features) Comforting family meals are a tradition in many homes with time spent around the table sharing stories and laughs while enjoying great food. These meals can include lavish or complicated recipes, but you can also enjoy dinner with loved ones by turning to easy-to-make dishes that still follow through with delicious flavor.

Serve up snack-sized sandwiches, for example, with this recipe for Pulled Pork Sliders with Tangy Red Slaw made using Aunt Nellie’s Whole Holland Style Onions and Sweet & Sour Red Cabbage to add a zesty zip to tender pork sandwiches.

Ready in less than half an hour and requiring only a handful of ingredients, Lemon-Butter 4 Bean Ravioli is an easy solution for a comfort food craving. Cheesy ravioli, READ Bean Salad and veggies make a simple, satisfying, meatless pasta dinner in minutes.

Visit auntnellies.com and READsalads.com for more easy family meal inspiration.

Pulled Pork Sliders with Tangy Red Slaw

Prep time: 25 minutes
Servings: 6

Slaw:

  • 1          tablespoon olive oil
  • 2          tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 3/4       teaspoon sugar
  • 1/8       teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/4       cup thinly sliced celery
  • 1/4       cup finely diced green bell pepper
  • 1          cup Aunt Nellie’s Whole Holland Style Onions, drained and coarsely chopped
  • 1          jar (16 ounces) Aunt Nellie’s Sweet & Sour Red Cabbage, drained

Sliders:

  • 1          pound pulled pork, heated through
  • 1/4       cup hickory smoked barbecue sauce, warm
  • 12        small pull-apart dinner rolls, split crosswise and lightly toasted
  1. To make slaw: In large bowl, combine oil, vinegar, sugar and cayenne pepper; whisk to combine. Add celery, bell pepper, onions and red cabbage; toss to coat.
  2. To make sliders: In medium bowl, mix pork and barbecue sauce. To assemble, spoon pork evenly over bottom half of each roll. Top with slaw and top half of each roll.

Note: If desired, slaw can be served warm. In saucepan over medium-low or medium heat, cook slaw about 5 minutes, or until heated through, stirring frequently.

Lemon-Butter 4 Bean Ravioli

Recipe courtesy of “Winnie’s Balance” on behalf of Seneca Foods
Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 12 minutes
Servings: 4

  • 1          package (10 ounces) fresh cheese ravioli
  • 1          teaspoon olive oil
  • 2          cups combination of sliced button mushrooms, chopped kale and grape tomatoes
  • 2          tablespoons unsalted butter, divided
  • 2          large cloves garlic, minced
  • 1          can (15 ounces) READ 4 Bean Salad
  • 1-2       tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • crushed red pepper flakes (optional)
  1. Cook ravioli according to package directions. Drain and set aside.
  2. Heat medium skillet over medium heat. Add olive oil; swirl to coat.
  3. Add mushrooms, kale, tomatoes and 1 tablespoon butter. Cook 6 minutes, or until mushrooms are soft and tomatoes burst, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat.
  4. Return pasta to medium heat. Add remaining butter and minced garlic. Cook 2 minutes, or until garlic is fragrant, stirring frequently. Stir in bean salad; cook 1 minute, or until heated through.
  5. Gently stir vegetables into pasta. Drizzle with lemon juice. Toss gently and top with red pepper flakes, if desired.

Source: Seneca Foods

Grilling-Tailgating 22 June 2020

Cookout Cravings: Appease summer appetites with grilled fare

(Family Features) The first thought that comes to mind when picturing grilling in the summer sun might be a perfectly cooked steak or a juicy burger, but no backyard barbecue is complete without the all-important sides and beverages that complete the meal.

Whether you're pairing a main protein with separate side dishes or going all-in-one by combining tender chicken with veggies on skewers, the opportunities are endless for a crave-worthy cookout.

Find more summer grilling recipes at Culinary.net.

5 Steps for Sizzling Steak

A sizzling steak is a surefire sound of summer, and the flavors achieved from one that's perfectly grilled are hard to match.

Before you fire up your grill, consider these five basics for cooking a chef-worthy steak:

Prepare Your Cut
Taste preferences (and prices) may differ among sirloins, ribeyes, T-bones and more, but the way you prepare steaks likely won't change much from cut to cut. You'll want to trim the thickness down to 1/2-1 inch for proper cooking, and setting the meat out ahead of time allows it to warm to room temperature before hitting the grill.

Add Some Salt
Feel free to add any spices you prefer, but remember a good steak typically doesn't require fancy seasoning - a pinch of salt works just fine. Add your salt anywhere between 30 minutes to a few hours before grilling time to help retain moisture and improve flavor.

Aim for High Heat
A two-zone fire is usually the way to go - one side of the grill should be hot (using direct heat) with the other side not quite as warm (indirect heat). This allows you to create a sear over direct heat before finishing cooking through - without burning - over indirect heat.

Sear and Slide
Cooking your steak over direct heat 1-2 minutes on each side is normally about right for creating a proper sear. At this point, depending on the thickness of your steak, you'll want to check for doneness. If it's not quite to the temperature you're looking to achieve, simply slide it over to the indirect heat for a finishing touch. Keep in mind these general guidelines for doneness: 120-125 F is rare, 130-135 F is medium-rare, 140-145 F is medium, 150-155 F is medium-well and 160-175 F is well done.

Let Rest
Finally, as hungry as you may be at this point, resting steaks is an important last step before diving in. Giving your steaks 5-10 minutes (foil or no foil) allows flavors to redistribute and moisture to be retained in the meat.

Less Prep, More Summer with a Skewered Solution

Make summer grilling easy and delicious by cooking your side dish and main dish together so you can spend more time outdoors and less time meal planning. These Grilled Greek Kebabs pair cubed chicken thighs with little potatoes on skewers, making for a classic cookout combo.

With no washing or peeling required, Creamer potatoes from The Little Potato Company require little prep, which helps make this recipe a breeze, and they cook quickly on the grill. Just marinate your chicken and potatoes with this zesty dressing and prepare for a taste bud-tingling backyard barbecue.

Visit littlepotatoes.com/summertime for more summer grilling recipes.

Grilled Greek Kebabs

Dressing/Marinade:

  • 3/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 lemons, zest and juice only
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • salt, to taste
  • pepper, to taste
  • 3 teaspoons mayonnaise
  • Skewers:
  • 2 cups The Little Potato Company Dynamic Duo bagged Creamer Potatoes, cut in half
  • 4-6 boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 8 wooden skewers dipped in water
  • pita bread (optional)

Salad:

  • 2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 4 sliced Lebanese cucumbers
  • 1/4 cup red onion, finely sliced
  • 1 cup feta cheese
  • 1 cup pitted kalamata olives

To make dressing/marinade: In measuring cup, mix olive oil, lemon juice, lemon zest, oregano, Dijon mustard, garlic and sugar. Season generously with salt and pepper, to taste. Pour 1/3 cup marinade into large bowl. Refrigerate remaining.

To prepare skewers: Add potatoes and chicken pieces to bowl with marinade. Mix well to coat and marinate 30 minutes, or as long as overnight in refrigerator.

Preheat grill to medium heat.

Skewer potatoes and chicken cubes alternately on wooden skewers. Grill 6-8 minutes on both sides. Grill pita bread, if desired.

Finish dressing by adding mayonnaise.

To make salad: In large serving dish, mix tomatoes, cucumber, onions, feta cheese and olives. Place kebabs on top and drizzle with dressing.

Serve with grilled pita bread, if desired.

Sipping on Sweetness

When it's summertime, many people crave something cold and fruity. Simply combine frozen strawberries with frozen pink lemonade concentrate to create a cool concoction perfect for a sizzling day. This fizzy summertime treat can delight your taste buds and keep you quenched while enjoying the sun's rays.

Find more summer drink recipes at Culinary.net.

Strawberry Spritzer

Recipe adapted from Taste of Home

  • 1 package (10 ounces) frozen sliced strawberries, sweetened and thawed
  • 2 liters lemon-lime soda, chilled
  • 1 can (12 ounces) frozen pink lemonade concentrate, thawed
  1. In blender, process strawberries until blended thoroughly.
  2. Pour strawberries into large pitcher; stir in soda and pink lemonade.

A Simple Stuffed Side

Whether you need a quick appetizer or something to snack on, these Stuffed Cherry Tomatoes make for an appealing bite.

Find more snack recipes at Culinary.net.

Stuffed Cherry Tomatoes

Recipe courtesy of Culinary.net

  • 24-48 cherry tomatoes
  • 1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese, softened
  • 2 tablespoons mayonnaise
  • 1 medium cucumber, peeled and diced
  • 3 green onion stalks, diced
  • 2 teaspoons minced dill
  • fresh dill, for garnish
  1. Cut thin slice off top of each tomato. Scoop out pulp. Invert tomatoes on paper towel to drain.
    In medium bowl, combine cream cheese and mayonnaise until smooth. Stir in cucumber, green onion and dill. Spoon mixture into tomatoes. Top with fresh dill.
  2. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

 

Photo courtesy of Getty Images (Steak)

Source:  The Little Potato Company

Seafood 12 June 2020

Add Seafood to Summer Meals

(Family Features) Grilled meals provide a summer escape for many families by offering opportunities to spend moments together while enjoying flavorful dishes. As Americans face uncertainty in many aspects of life, one place they should be able to turn to for normalcy is food.

One option that checks boxes including comfort, fun, taste and variety: seafood. As a nutritious protein available across the country, it is versatile and can be paired with a variety of cuisines and flavors. Options range from salmon and shrimp to crab, tuna and more.

To encourage hungry Americans to enjoy the many benefits of eating seafood, the “Eat Seafood America” campaign offers these reasons to add fish, shrimp and more to your menu:

  • Whether you order online, head to a store or purchase fresh from a local fisherman, seafood is widely available.
  • Seafood works for a variety of dishes and cooking methods, such as these recipes for Easy Shrimp Skewers, a light and hassle-free family meal, or Seared Salmon with Mediterranean Salsa, a fun spin on cowboy caviar.
  • Seafood provides essential nutrients that support immune health, such as omega-3s that may even help reduce anxiety, according to research published by “The Journal of the American Medical Association.”
  • Purchasing seafood supports 2 million American jobs for men and women who follow high levels of food safety practices to provide sustainable seafood.
  • Seafood offers an escape as a way for families to enjoy a favorite meal that reminds loved ones of vacation memories from oceanside paradises.

Find more ways to add seafood to your summer menu at eatseafoodamerica.com.

Easy Shrimp Skewers

Recipe courtesy of Annessa Chumbley, RDN, on behalf of the Seafood Nutrition Partnership
Prep time: 5 minutes
Cook time: 10 minutes
Servings: 5

  • 10        wooden skewers
  • water
  • 2          medium zucchinis, cut into large chunks
  • 2          medium bell peppers (any color), cut into large chunks
  • 2          red onions, cut into large chunks
  • 1          cup cherry tomatoes
  • 10-12   ounces cooked shrimp, peeled, deveined, tails on
  • olive oil
  • sea salt, to taste
  • 1          lemon, juice only
  1. In bowl, soak skewer sticks in water at least 10 minutes to prevent burning on grill). Preheat grill to medium-high heat.
  2. Build skewers by alternating zucchinis, bell peppers, onions, tomatoes and shrimp, pushing ingredients closely together on each skewer. Brush each with olive oil and sprinkle with sea salt, to taste.
  3. Cook skewers about 9 minutes, rotating every 3 minutes until veggies and shrimp are seared but not overcooked. Remove and place on large platter.
  4. Drizzle with lemon juice and serve.

Seared Salmon with Mediterranean Salsa

Recipe courtesy of Annessa Chumbley, RDN, on behalf of the Seafood Nutrition Partnership Prep time: 5 minutes
Cook time: 10 minutes
Servings: 4-6

  • 2          tablespoons olive oil
  • 4-6       salmon filets (each about 1-inch thick)
  • sea salt, to taste
  • 1          can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1          can quartered or chopped artichoke hearts, drained
  • 1          cup diced cucumber
  • 1          cup diced cherry tomatoes
  • 1/3       cup diced red onion
  • 1/2       cup crumbled feta cheese
  • 1          handful fresh spinach, chopped
  • balsamic glaze
  1. In skillet over medium-high heat, heat olive oil. Sear salmon filets 4 minutes. Sprinkle tops of each salmon filet with sea salt, to taste. Flip and cook 4 minutes until barely done. Remove to serving platter.
  2. In medium bowl, make salsa by gently folding together chickpeas, artichoke hearts, cucumber, tomatoes, red onion, feta and spinach. Sprinkle with sea salt, to taste. Drizzle with balsamic glaze and spoon salsa over each salmon filet.
  3. Refrigerate leftover salsa.

Source: Seafood Nutrition Partnership

Healthy 01 June 2020

Family Foods with a Weight Loss Focus

(Family Features) Losing weight and focusing on a healthful diet may lead you back to the same tried-and-true tricks, however, conventional wisdom doesn’t always pay dividends. Some eating plans may offer up new twists to help you and your family eat meals you enjoy without forgoing your health goals.

For example, “Always Eat After 7 PM,” written by Joel Marion, CISSN, NSCA-CPT, five-time best-selling e-book author and co-founder of the e-commerce supplement company BioTrust Nutrition, debunks popular diet myths and offers an easy-to-follow diet that accelerates fat-burning and allows you to indulge in your most intense cravings by eating the majority of your calories at night. The outlined plan features a 14-day “acceleration phase” designed for rapid results, a “main phase” when you’ll learn which fat-burning foods to eat to achieve your weight loss goals and a “lifestyle phase” to keep the weight off for good.

Conventional wisdom dictates that it’s best to avoid carbs, eat an early dinner and never eat immediately before bed. However, Marion debunks the myths underlying traditional dieting with a simple, highly effective weight loss program allowing readers to enjoy social dinners without restriction, satisfy nighttime hunger with fat-burning sweet and salty pre-bedtime snacks and indulge cravings with strategically timed cheat meals.

With straightforward food lists, easy-to-follow meal plans and recipes for each phase, this can be a simpler, more enjoyable way to lose weight without feeling restricted. Taken directly from the book, these recipes for Pot Roast Tacos with Chimichurri, Cheesy Ground Beef Skillet and Chili Loaded Baked Potato can help you take part in the program while enjoying time with loved ones at the family table.

Learn more about the diet and book at joelmarion.com.

Pot Roast Tacos with Chimichurri

Recipe courtesy of “Always Eat After 7 PM”
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 5 minutes
Servings: 8

Chimichurri:

  • 1 1/2    cups fresh Italian parsley
  • 1          cup fresh cilantro
  • 2          tablespoons green onion, chopped
  • 1          tablespoon garlic, chopped
  • 1/4       cup olive oil
  • 2          tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1          tablespoon water
  • 1          teaspoon sea salt
  • 1          teaspoon crushed red pepper

Tacos:

  • 3          cups chuck roast, slow cooked and chopped
  • 8          yellow corn tortillas (6 inches)
  • 1          ripe avocado, pitted and sliced
  • 4          radishes, sliced
  • 1/4       cup queso fresco, crumbled
  1. To make chimichurri: In food processor, combine parsley, cilantro, onion and garlic until chopped. Add olive oil, lemon juice, water, salt and red pepper; process until fully combined.
  2. To assemble tacos: In medium skillet over medium-high heat, cook chopped chuck roast 5 minutes. Remove from heat and mix in 1/2 cup chimichurri. In grill pan, char tortillas then fill evenly with meat, avocado, radishes and queso fresco. Serve with remaining chimichurri.

Nutritional information per serving: 410 calories; 24 g fat; 12 g carbohydrates; 366 mg sodium; 2 g fiber; 41 g protein; 1 g sugar.

Chili Loaded Baked Potato

Recipe courtesy of “Always Eat After 7 PM”
Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 1 hour, 35 minutes
Servings: 6

  • 6          sweet potatoes (8 ounces each)
  • nonstick cooking spray
  • salt, to taste
  • pepper, to taste
  • 1          tablespoon olive oil
  • 2          pounds ground chuck
  • 2          yellow onions, diced
  • 2          tablespoons garlic, minced
  • 3          tablespoons chili powder
  • 2          tablespoons ground cumin
  • 1          tablespoon dried oregano
  • 2          teaspoons smoked paprika
  • 1/4       teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 3          cups low-sodium beef broth
  • 1          can (28 ounces) crushed tomatoes
  • 1          tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1          can (15 ounces) butter beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1/2       cup fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 1          Anaheim chile, minced
  • 1          teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2       cup plain Greek yogurt
  • 1/4       cup fresh cilantro leaves
  • 1/4       cup red onion, minced
  1. Heat oven to 400° F. Line baking sheet or pan with parchment paper. Rinse and scrub sweet potatoes; pat dry with paper towel and pierce several times with fork or knife. Place in prepared pan. Lightly spray sweet potatoes with nonstick cooking spray and season with salt and pepper, to taste. Bake 45 minutes- 1 hour until tender when poked.
  2. In pot, heat olive oil. Saute chuck until fully cooked. Drain fat and return to pot; add onion, garlic, chili powder, cumin, oregano, paprika and cayenne pepper. Reduce heat to medium-low and saute until onions are soft, about 10 minutes, stirring often.
  3. Add broth, crushed tomatoes and vinegar to pot. Increase heat to high and bring to boil. Reduce to medium-low and simmer 10 minutes. Add butter beans, cilantro and chile; cook 5 minutes. Season with sea salt.
  4. Split potatoes lengthwise; fluff flesh with fork. Top evenly with chili, yogurt, cilantro leaves and red onion.

Nutritional information per serving: 573 calories; 10 g fat; 58 g carbohydrates; 588 mg sodium; 11 g fiber; 25 g protein; 12 g sugar.

Cheesy Ground Beef Skillet

Recipe courtesy of “Always Eat After 7 PM”
Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 38 minutes
Servings: 6

  • 1 3/4    cups water
  • 1          teaspoon sea salt
  • 1          cup white rice
  • 1          tablespoon olive oil
  • 1          pound extra-lean ground beef
  • 1          yellow onion, chopped
  • 1          tablespoon garlic, chopped
  • 1          red bell pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 1          teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1          teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/2       teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 1/2       teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/4       teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/2       cup tomato sauce
  • 1          can (15 ounces) kidney beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1          cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1/3       cup fresh parsley, minced
  1. In saucepan over high heat, bring water to boil. Add salt and rice; stir once then cover pot and reduce to low heat 18 minutes.
  2. In large skillet, heat olive oil. Stir in ground beef. Cook and stir until beef is crumbly and no longer pink. Drain and discard excess grease. Mix in onion and garlic; cook until tender, about 5 minutes. Add bell pepper, oregano, basil, red pepper, sea salt and black pepper; cook and stir until bell pepper is tender, about 5 minutes.
  3. Stir in cooked rice, tomato sauce and kidney beans. Reduce heat and cover until vegetables are tender, about 8 minutes. Remove pan from heat, sprinkle cheese over top and garnish with parsley.

Nutritional information per serving: 399 calories: 14 g fat; 36 g carbohydrates; 816 mg sodium; 4 g fiber; 30 g protein; 3 g sugar.

Source: Promote A Book

Meal Ideas 18 May 2020

Breaking Bread

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Avocado Veggie Sandwich

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

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

Panzanella Bagel Salad

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

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

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

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

Rotini with Sausage and Mushrooms

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

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

Cheesy Black Bean Toast with Pico de Gallo

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

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

Source:  Grain Foods Foundation

Videos 01 May 2020

Horseradish and Chive Sauce

When it’s time to fire up the grill this summer for an all-American classic, you can take steak to the next level by pairing it with a creamy sauce that delivers a kick. This Horseradish and Chive Sauce is the ideal complement for juicy steak; try making a day in advance to allow the flavors to meld together overnight. Find more ideas for upgrading your grilling experience at OmahaSteaks.com.

Watch video to see how to make this recipe!

Horseradish and Chive Sauce

Prep time: 5 minutes
Total time: 1-24 hours
Yield: 1 1/4 cups

  • 1          cup sour cream
  • 3          tablespoons fresh grated horseradish
  • 2          tablespoons minced fresh chives
  • 2          teaspoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2       teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2       teaspoon fresh cracked pepper
  • Omaha Steaks Private Reserve Rub
  • 2          Omaha Steaks Private Reserve Boneless New York Strips (10 ounces each), thawed
  1. In small bowl, mix sour cream, horseradish, chives, lemon juice, salt and pepper. Cover and refrigerate at least 1 hour or overnight, if possible, to let flavors meld.
  2. Heat grill to medium-high heat. Spread rub over steaks.
  3. Grill steaks to desired doneness. Serve with Horseradish and Chive Sauce.

Source:  Omaha Steaks

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