recipes

Meal Ideas 20 April 2021

Easy, Satisfying Spring Recipes

(Family Features) Whether you enjoy your spring meals al fresco or simply turn to warm-weather dishes at the comfort of your own dining table, the season brings with it a perfect excuse to shake up your menu.

Lighter fare is often the way to go as temperatures climb, but that doesn’t mean you have to settle for a regular sandwich or a boring salad. Instead, enhance these springtime classics by rethinking tradition in tasty (yet easy) ways.

This Sabich recipe calls for a multitude of fresh flavors including Aunt Nellie’s Pickled Beets and Onions and hard-boiled eggs plus a variety of veggies, hummus and ethnic seasonings. Or, if a quick and easy salad calls your name for an outdoor meal, this Tossed Bean Salad with Lemon Vinaigrette requires only READ Bean Salad, mixed greens and a handful of other ingredients.

Find more easy springtime dishes at readsalads.com and auntnellies.com.

Tossed Bean Salad with Lemon Vinaigrette

Prep time: 15 minutes
Servings: 4

  • 1          can (15 ounces) READ 3 or 4 Bean Salad
  • 2          tablespoons lemon juice or white wine vinegar
  • 2          tablespoons olive oil
  • coarsely ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1          package (about 10 ounces) mixed salad greens with carrots
  • 4          slices bacon (about 1/4 cup), cooked crisp and crumbled (optional)
  • shaved Parmesan or Asiago cheese (optional)
  1. Drain bean salad well; in small bowl, reserve 1/2 cup liquid.
  2. To make dressing: Whisk reserved bean liquid and lemon juice then whisk in oil. Add pepper, to taste.
  3. Place salad greens in bowl. Add bean salad and bacon. Add dressing, as desired. Toss gently to coat. Arrange on platter; top with shaved cheese, if desired.

Variation: Top salad with sliced grilled chicken then top with cheese.

 

Sabich

Recipe courtesy of eazypeazymealz.com
Prep time: 20 minutes
Servings: 4

  • 1          jar (16 ounces) Aunt Nellie’s Pickled Beets and Onions
  • 1          medium eggplant
  • 2          teaspoons salt, plus additional, to taste, divided
  • 1          cup vegetable oil
  • 4          hard-boiled eggs, sliced
  • pepper, to taste
  • 1 1/2    teaspoons za’atar, plus additional for serving, divided (optional)
  • 1/2       teaspoon sumac, plus additional for serving, divided (optional)
  • 1          cucumber, diced
  • 3          Roma tomatoes, diced
  • 1/3       cup fresh parsley, finely chopped
  • 1/2       lemon, juice only
  • 4          whole-grain pita breads with pockets
  • 1/2       cup hummus
  • 2          cups shredded red cabbage
  • 1          medium green bell pepper, thinly sliced
  • 1/4       cup Amba pickled mango sauce (optional)
  • 1/4       cup tahini
  1. Drain beets and onions; set aside.
  2. Wash eggplant. Slice into 3/8-inch-thick pieces. Place slices on cooling rack. Add 2 teaspoons salt to slices to draw out extra moisture. Let sit 10 minutes. Pat extra moisture off.
  3. In large 14-inch skillet, heat vegetable oil over medium heat. Once oil is hot, place eggplant slices in oil; fry until browned, about 3 minutes per side, in batches of four pieces. Place on paper towel-lined plate to absorb additional oil.
  4. Season hard-boiled egg slices with salt and pepper, to taste. Season with 1/2 teaspoon za’atar and sumac, if desired. Set aside.
  5. To make salad: In medium bowl, combine cucumber, tomatoes, parsley, lemon juice and remaining za’atar. Set aside.
  6. Gently slice one end of each pita and open pocket. In microwave on high, heat pitas 10 seconds. Place equal amounts fried eggplant in each pita. Spread 2 tablespoons hummus in each pita. Gently layer one-fourth of egg slices, beets and onions, cabbage, Israeli salad and green peppers in each pita.
  7. Drizzle each sabich with about 1 tablespoon amba sauce, if desired, and 1 tablespoon tahini. Season with additional salt and pepper or sumac and Za’atar, if desired.

Source: Seneca Foods
Aunt Nellies

Meal Ideas 12 March 2021

Pro Tips for Perfecting Pasta

(Family Features) Next time hunger calls in your home, turn to a filling family favorite: pasta. With a nearly endless variety of pasta types, sauce pairings and recipe ideas, the options are aplenty, and cooking is often a breeze.

Consider these pasta cooking tips from Rouxbe, an online culinary school training people of all abilities to become better, more confident cooks.

  • Use a large, straight-sided pot with 6 quarts of water for every 1 pound of pasta. Bring to a boil, add 1 teaspoon of salt for each quart of water and stir to dissolve.
  • Wait for rapidly boiling water before adding pre-made pasta then cook according to package instructions for al dente, which means the pasta offers a slight resistance. For stuffed or fresh pasta, aim for a gentle boil and cook 1-5 minutes. Reserve 1 cup of pasta water for use in sauces then drain (never rinse) your pasta.  
  • Add pasta to your sauce; never the other way around. Pair thin pastas like angel hair with lighter sauces, seafoods, basil and light oils. Fettucine, penne and rigatoni complement spicy sausage, heavy creams and chunky ragu. When in doubt, spaghetti offers a versatile option.

Pasta is a natural fit for fresh veggies, and you can put your skills to the test with Pappardelle with Garden Vegetables or create Homemade Potato Gnocchi to freeze and enjoy later.

For more information, visit rouxbe.com.

Pappardelle with Garden Vegetables

Total time: 1 hour
Servings: 3-4

  •             Salted water
  • 3          tablespoons olive oil
  • 3          tablespoons shallots or white onion, minced
  • 2          cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4       teaspoon chili flakes
  • 1          cup white wine
  • 2          cups pappardelle noodles
  • 3/4       cup vegetable stock
  • 3          tablespoons capers (optional)
  • 2          vine-ripened tomatoes, sliced in wedges
  • 1          handful baby kale
  • 1          fresh lemon, juice only
  • 2          tablespoons butter (optional)
  • sea salt, to taste
  • freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1          handful fresh basil, torn
  1. Bring large pot of salted water to boil.
  2. In fry pan on medium-high heat, add olive oil and onions; saute 2 minutes. Lower heat slightly and add garlic and chile flakes. Saute on medium heat 2-3 minutes. Add white wine and deglaze pan. Cook 3 minutes. Remove from heat and keep warm until ready to add freshly cooked pasta.
  3. In pot of boiling water, add pappardelle. Cook according to package instructions then drain.
  4. Place fry pan back on medium heat. Add drained pasta; vegetable stock; capers, if desired; tomatoes; baby kale; and lemon juice. Add butter, if desired, and toss well. Cook 2-3 minutes, tossing occasionally, and season with salt and pepper, to taste, and fresh basil.
  5. Toss again, remove from heat and serve.

Homemade Potato Gnocchi

Total time: 2 hours
Servings: 2-4

  • 2          medium Yukon Gold or russet potatoes
  • 3/4       teaspoon sea salt, divided
  • 2          teaspoons water
  • 1          cup all-purpose flour, divided, plus additional, for surface
  • 1/4       teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1/8       teaspoon white pepper
  • 2          large egg yolks
  1. Preheat oven to 400 F. Place potatoes on sheet of foil, add 1/2 teaspoon salt and water; wrap. Bake 40 minutes, or until cooked through.
  2. Peel potatoes while hot. Cut and rice potatoes. Let potatoes cool completely.
  3. To make dough, sprinkle potatoes with flour. Aerate with bench scraper then add remaining salt, nutmeg and white pepper.
  4. Break up egg yolks and pour over potatoes. Cover surface with flour. Continue cutting and gently lifting dough.
  5. Test dough by squeezing gently; it shouldn’t stick. Add flour, if needed.
  6. Shape dough into rectangle and fold several times, using fingertips to bring together. Flatten dough out until it reaches finger thickness. Sprinkle with flour and let rest 5-10 minutes.
  7. Cut finger-width strips of dough and sprinkle strips with flour. Roll out each strip and cut ropes into 3/4-inch pieces. Separate slightly and flour well.
  8. Fresh gnocchi can sit at room temperature 30 minutes before cooking.
  9. To freeze: Place gnocchi on tray, making sure they aren’t touching. Once frozen, transfer to plastic freezer bag and freeze up to 2 months. Cook gnocchi from frozen and serve with desired sauce.

 Photos courtesy of Getty Images

Source: Rouxbe

Meal Ideas 12 March 2021

Maximize Family Meal Flavors with Cheese

(Family Features) While there are many ways to enhance the taste and texture of your family’s favorite dishes, perhaps one of the simplest and most impactful is the addition of cheese. From fish and seafood to veggie-inspired recipes, the dairy delight provides a versatile, flavorful ingredient.

One wholesome option is cheese made with 100% sustainably sourced Real California Milk from dairy farm families, which helps bring out the full flavor of dishes like California Queso Fresco Fish Tacos. Quality, authentic dairy can be part of flavor-driven experiences with your loved ones whether you enjoy the tacos during a “fish Friday” event or simply as an opportunity to share a meal as a family. You can also use queso fresco to elevate the flavor of dishes like chilaquiles, or turn to other varieties like Oaxaca for a capirotada or asadero for quiche.

If a vegetarian-friendly meal suits your style, cheese can also enhance plant-forward dishes like Vegetarian Stuffed Peppers. These red bell peppers are cooked and seeded before being stuffed with onions, mushrooms, cheese and seasonings. Once they’re baked to an ooey-gooey doneness, they’re served with white rice for a filling yet healthful meal.

Visit realcaliforniamilk.com/hispanic-dairy to find more cheesy, delicious recipes.

Vegetarian Stuffed Peppers

Prep time: 25 minutes
Cook time: about 1 hour
Servings: 4

  • 4          red bell peppers
  • 1/2       cup, plus 1 tablespoon, vegetable oil, divided
  • 1          cup white onion (about 1 medium), 1/4-inch diced
  • 4          cups cremini or brown mushrooms (about 1 pound), 1/4-inch diced
  • 1          teaspoon garlic salt
  • 1          teaspoon black pepper
  • 1          cup Real California Oaxaca cheese, shredded
  • cooked white rice, for serving
  1. Preheat oven to 400 F.
  2. Rub bell peppers with 1 tablespoon oil then use grill, broiler or gas stovetop burner to cook peppers, turning occasionally, until well charred, 12-15 minutes. Transfer to bowl, cover and set aside until cool enough to handle, about 10 minutes.
  3. In large skillet over medium heat, warm remaining oil. Add onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until starting to brown, 3-5 minutes. Add mushrooms, garlic salt and black pepper; cook, stirring occasionally, until mushrooms are browned and liquid is almost entirely evaporated, 7-10 minutes.
  4. Rub charred skin from bell peppers. Slice off tops and remove seeds. Fill bell peppers with mushroom mixture, top with cheese and arrange in baking dish. Replace bell pepper tops and bake until cheese melts, 8-10 minutes. Serve with cooked rice.

 

California Queso Fresco Fish Tacos

Servings: 6 (12 tacos)

Avocado Radish Salsa:

  • 2          medium avocados, chopped
  • 1/3       cup finely chopped onion
  • 3/4       cup diced radish
  • 5          serrano chile peppers, seeded and finely chopped
  • 3          tablespoons cilantro, finely chopped
  • 1          clove garlic, finely chopped
  • 1          lime, juice only
  • salt, to taste
  • pepper, to taste

Tacos:

  • 1 1/2    pounds swordfish, or other whitefish, steaks or fillets
  • vegetable oil
  • salt, to taste
  • pepper, to taste
  • 1          tablespoon lime juice
  • 1/2       teaspoon ground cumin
  • 12        corn tortillas
  • 6          ounces Real California Queso Fresco cheese, crumbled
  • 2          medium ripe tomatoes, diced
  • 1          cup shredded cabbage
  1. To make avocado radish salsa: In small bowl, combine avocados, onion, radish, chile peppers, cilantro, garlic and lime juice. Add salt and pepper, to taste. Set aside.
  2. Heat grill to medium heat.
  3. Rinse fish and pat dry with paper towels. Rub oil on both sides to coat; season with salt and pepper, to taste. Grill fish 6-9 minutes until cooked through; cool slightly. Remove skin and bones; cut fish into 1 1/2-inch strips.
  4. In medium bowl, toss fish with lime juice and cumin. Warm tortillas in microwave or at 275 F in oven.
  5. Place equal amounts of fish, cheese, tomatoes, cabbage and salsa in center of each tortilla. Roll up tacos to serve.

Substitution: Use Real California Asadero or Monterey Jack cheese for Queso Fresco.  

Source: Real California Milk

Meal Ideas 03 March 2021

Fast, Flavorful Meals When You're Short on Time

(Family Features) Quality meals don't have to drain hours from your day; satisfying taste is possible in just minutes when you have a few strategies that can help make meal prep easier and the results more enjoyable.

Eat better with veggies. If eating better is your goal, explore veggie-based recipes that are hearty and filled with nutrients and vitamins. This Brown and Wild Rice Bowl with Veggie Burger is perfect for a meatless Monday or any other day when you need a fast, filling and flavorful meal in short order. If you don't have veggie burgers at home, or simply prefer a meat-based option, a cooked frozen beef patty is a good time-saving alternative.

Make simple swaps for variety. When you find a dish that's easy and tasty, you may find yourself falling back on the same thing again and again. Prevent taste bud boredom by mixing up your ingredients. You can transform a rice-based recipe by changing up the veggies, cheese, dressing and other toppings. Try pickled jalapenos for spice. Add corn if you like things sweet. Swap a creamy dressing with a zesty vinaigrette for fewer calories and a whole new taste.

Shop for convenience. Takeout may let you skip prep time completely, but you can easily make versions of many favorite to-go meals at home in just a few minutes. This Beef and Broccoli Garlic Rice uses perfectly portioned Minute Ready to Serve microwavable rice cups that help you put together a delicious lunch or dinner without measuring or overeating. Choosing products like portion-controlled rice and other ready-to-serve ingredients can help shave time off your prep work.

Tempt your taste buds with more convenient meal ideas at minuterice.com.

Brown and Wild Rice Bowl with Veggie Burger

Prep time: 5 minutes
Servings: 1

  • 1 cup Minute Ready to Serve Brown and Wild Rice
  • 1 precooked veggie burger patty
  • 1/2 cup shredded lettuce
  • 1/2 cup halved grape tomatoes
  • 2 tablespoons shredded cheddar cheese
  • 2 tablespoons ranch dressing
  1. Prepare rice according to package directions.
  2. Break veggie burger into large chunks and place in small, microwave-safe bowl. Microwave on high 60-90 seconds, or until veggie burger is heated through.
  3. Toss together rice and veggie burger. Top with lettuce, tomatoes and cheese. Drizzle with ranch dressing.

Beef and Broccoli Garlic Rice

Prep time: 5 minutes
Servings: 1

  • 1 cup Minute Ready to Serve Garlic and Olive Oil Jasmine Rice
  • 1/2 cup fresh broccoli florets
  • 1/2 cup sliced red bell pepper
  • 2 tablespoons diced water chestnuts
  • 3 ounces cooked beef, sliced into strips
  • 3 tablespoons teriyaki glaze
  • soy sauce (optional)
  1. Heat rice according to package directions.
  2. In large, microwave-safe bowl, combine broccoli, bell pepper and water chestnuts. Microwave on high 1 minute. Add beef and microwave on high 1 minute.
  3. Stir in glaze and rice. Top with soy sauce, if desired.

Source: Minute Rice

Healthy 01 March 2021

Give Spring Salads a Fresh Spin

(Family Features) With spring and warmer weather comes salad season, offering a perfect canvas for creating refreshing meals and appetizers centered around tasty greens, juicy tomatoes and crave-worthy dressings. Give your salads an update by avoiding the same tired mixes and instead create tasty meals fit for the season.

One easy way to up your salad game is by starting with quality ingredients like Fresh Express salad blends, NatureSweet Cherubs Tomatoes and Litehouse refrigerated salad dressings. These fresh, flavorful ingredients can be combined in a dish like this Chimichurri Chickpea Salad, a perfect way to go green this spring for nearly any occasion.

Part of the appeal of dishing up a homemade salad is the unlimited options you have at your fingertips to make the bowl of greens uniquely “yours.” For many, this means one thing: the more toppings, the better. With grilled chicken, crispy bacon, tomatoes, ripe avocado, hard-boiled eggs, blue cheese and a bed of fresh lettuce, this classic Cobb Salad offers an ideal lunch or even a quick family meal.

Because both these recipes can be made in 20 minutes or less, they provide simple solutions when short on time. Plus, the fresh ingredients sum up everything spring meals are made of.

Find more ways to create easy yet delicious salads at litehousefoods.com/iheartsalad.

Chimichurri Chickpea Salad

Total time: 15 minutes
Servings: 4

  • 1          cup fresh cilantro
  • 2/3       cup fresh parsley
  • 2          tablespoons dried oregano
  • 2          garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/4       cup red wine vinegar
  • 2/3       cup olive oil
  • 1/2       teaspoon salt
  • 1/2       teaspoon pepper
  • 1          can (14 1/2 ounces) chickpeas, drained
  • 1/4       teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1          bag Fresh Express Baby Kale Mix
  • 1          cup NatureSweet Cherubs Tomatoes, diced
  • 1          medium avocado, diced
  • 4          tablespoons Litehouse Avocado Ranch Dressing
  1. In food processor, combine cilantro, parsley, oregano, garlic, red wine vinegar, olive oil, salt and pepper. Pulse until sauce is smooth.
  2. Place chimichurri sauce in small bowl with chickpeas and crushed red pepper flakes; toss to coat. Cover and refrigerate overnight, if possible.
  3. Divide kale, tomatoes and avocado between four bowls. Top each bowl evenly with marinated chickpeas. Drizzle with avocado ranch dressing and serve.

Cobb Salad

Total time: 20 minutes
Servings: 4

  • 3-4       eggs    
  • 1/4       pound bacon
  • 1          bag Fresh Express Sweet Butter Lettuce
  • 1          pound grilled chicken
  • 1          cup NatureSweet Cherubs Tomatoes, halved
  • 1          ripe avocado, sliced
  • 1/4       cup blue cheese
  • 1/4       cup Litehouse Homestyle Ranch Dressing
  1. Bring pot of water to boil. Use slotted spoon to place eggs in water. Boil 10 minutes then transfer to ice bath to stop cooking process. Peel eggs and slice.
  2. Heat skillet over medium heat. Dice bacon and add to pan. Saute until bacon is crispy and fat is rendered, about 7 minutes. Remove from pan with slotted spoon.
  3. To assemble salad, start with bed of lettuce. Top with hard-boiled eggs, grilled chicken, tomatoes, avocado, bacon and blue cheese; toss in ranch dressing.

Source: Litehouse

Meal Ideas 06 January 2021

Power Family Meals with Protein-Packed Peanuts

(Family Features) Starting fresh with a new year is a chance to hit the reset button for many people, and your family can use this opportunity to rethink homemade meals while striving for nutritious (and still delicious) dishes. From snacks to the main course each evening, the options are nearly endless for planning a revamped menu with healthier ingredients.

Dinnertime can be a cinch with Peanut Butter Chicken, a simple dish that takes less than 20 minutes to make when busy evenings call for a quick solution. If a veggie-based option aligns better with your family's desires, try Veggie Sammies with Peanut Butter Satay Sauce or go full-on comfort food with Very Vegan Peanut Butter Jackfruit Chili. Snacking doesn't have to mean forgoing your dedication to nutritious choices either - these Peanut Granola Bars can be your made-at-home masterpiece for adults and children to enjoy.

These recipes from the Georgia Peanut Commission are powered by peanuts, a nutrient-rich superfood that delivers 19 vitamins and 7 grams of protein per serving for a health benefit punch in each bite.

Discover more nutritious recipe ideas at gapeanuts.com.

Veggie Sammies with Peanut Butter Satay Sauce

Prep time: 30 minutes
Servings: 2

  • 4 tablespoons creamy peanut butter
  • 3 tablespoons lime juice
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 4 teaspoons hoisin sauce
  • 2 teaspoons soy sauce
  • 2 teaspoons sriracha
  • 2 French baguette rolls (6 inches each)
  • 1/2 cup cucumber, sliced
  • 1/2 cup white onion, sliced into thin strips
  • 1/2 cup red bell pepper, sliced into thin strips
  • 1/2 cup purple cabbage
  • 1/2 cup fresh cilantro
  1. In small bowl, combine peanut butter, lime juice, water, hoisin sauce, soy sauce and sriracha; mix well.
  2. Spread sauce on both sides of each roll then layer with cucumber, onion and bell pepper. Top with cabbage and cilantro.

Very Vegan Peanut Butter Jackfruit Chili

Recipe courtesy of the National Peanut Board
Prep time: 5 minutes
Cook time: 35 minutes
Servings: 8

  • 2 teaspoons oil
  • 1/2 large white onion, chopped
  • 1/2 green bell pepper, chopped
  • 1/2 red bell pepper, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1 can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 can whole tomatoes
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 can red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 can green jackfruit, drained and chopped
  • 1/4 cup peanut butter
  • cornbread (optional)
  • tortilla chips (optional)
  • cinnamon rolls (optional)
  1. eat large, heavy-bottomed pot over medium heat. Add oil, onion and peppers; cook 3 minutes, stirring often. Add garlic, salt, cumin, chili powder and tomato paste, stirring to coat. Cook 1-2 minutes, stirring constantly, then stir in crushed tomatoes, whole tomatoes, water, kidney beans and jackfruit; bring to boil then reduce heat to medium-low. Simmer 25-30 minutes. Stir in peanut butter and simmer 5 minutes.
  2. Serve with cornbread, tortilla chips or cinnamon rolls, if desired.

Peanut Granola Bars

Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 6 minutes, plus 30-45 minutes cooling time
Servings: 12-14

  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons creamy peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar, firmly packed
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups rolled oats (quick or regular)
  • 1 cup bran flakes
  • 1 cup sweetened coconut flakes
  • 1 cup dried fruit (raisins, blueberries or cranberries)
  • 1 cup roasted peanuts, chopped
  1. In large, shallow, microwavable dish, combine honey, butter, peanut butter, brown sugar, vanilla and salt. Microwave at 50% power 2 minutes then whisk to combine and microwave at 50% power 2 minutes.
  2. Add oats, bran flakes, coconut flakes, dried fruit and peanuts; stir to combine. Microwave on high 1 minute. Stir and microwave 30 seconds.
  3. Press mixture into 13-by-9-inch baking dish lined with parchment or wax paper with some extra hanging over edges to easily lift bars out. Use bottom of glass wrapped with plastic wrap to press granola mixture firmly into pan. Allow to cool completely 30-45 minutes. Cut into 12-14 bars.

Peanut Butter Chicken

Recipe courtesy of "Unsophisticook"
Prep time: 5 minutes
Cook time: 12 minutes
Yield: 6 cups

Peanut Sauce:

  • 1/2 cup creamy natural peanut butter
  • 3 tablespoons sweet red chili sauce
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1/8-1/4 cup hot water (optional)
  • chopped unsalted roasted peanuts (optional)
     
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil or avocado oil
  • 1 1/2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts, diced into 1-inch cubes
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 3/4 cup peanut sauce
  • cooked brown rice
  • assorted bell peppers, sliced
  • chopped unsalted roasted peanuts (optional)
  1. To make peanut sauce: In small glass bowl, whisk peanut butter, sweet red chili sauce, apple cider vinegar, soy sauce and honey until blended smoothly.
  2. Thin sauce with hot water to desired consistency. Garnish with chopped unsalted roasted peanuts, if desired.
  3. To make chicken: In large skillet over medium-high heat, drizzle oil. Add diced chicken then pour soy sauce over top. Saute about 10-12 minutes until chicken is fully cooked.
  4. Serve with peanut sauce, brown rice and colorful sliced veggies. Garnish with chopped unsalted roasted peanuts, if desired.

Source: Georgia Peanut Commission

Healthy 11 December 2020

Turn to Tempeh for a Plant-Based Superfood

(Family Features) As a key part of a nutritious eating plan, protein intake can be a healthy step to take in the new year. One increasingly popular way to add protein to your at-home menu is with protein-packed, plant-based foods like tempeh.

Tempeh’s roots date back thousands of years and originate in Indonesia. It’s an all-natural protein source made with simple, whole-food ingredients – most often fermented soybeans, water and rice – and is high in protein, packed with fiber and low in fat, sodium and calories. Tempeh is also loaded with vitamins and minerals like calcium, manganese, phosphorus and iron, and has all nine essential amino acids. Because it’s fermented, the nutrients in tempeh are easy for the body to digest.

The health benefits of tempeh, including 18 grams of protein per serving, are one reason to give it a try, but another is it’s easy and versatile to cook. It has a firm texture, nutty taste and can be baked, fried, steamed or grilled. Tempeh also easily absorbs marinades, spices and sauces. To prepare tempeh, cut it into cubes, strips or crumble it then toss into a stir-fry, layer it onto a BLT sandwich or simply warm a skillet and sear it until golden brown.

The possibilities for tempeh are nearly endless, and it’s also increasingly easy to find. For example, Lightlife, founded in 1979 as “Tempeh Works,” was among the first commercial producers of tempeh in the United States. Today, it offers its Original Tempeh at more than 18,500 retail stores nationwide.

Find protein-packed meal ideas, like Sesame Ginger Tempeh Power Bowls with Quinoa and Sweet Potatoes, at lightlife.com.

Sesame Ginger Tempeh Power Bowls with Quinoa and Sweet Potatoes

Pickled Pink Onions:

  • 1/4       cup white wine vinegar
  • 2          teaspoons white sugar
  • 1/4       teaspoon salt
  • 1/2       small red onion, peeled and thinly sliced


Sesame Ginger Vinaigrette:

  • 2          tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2          teaspoons sesame oil
  • 2          teaspoons grated fresh ginger
  • 2          teaspoons rice wine vinegar
  • 2          teaspoons soy sauce
  • 2          teaspoons toasted sesame seeds


Sweet Potatoes:

  • 1          tablespoon olive oil
  • 1          large sweet potato, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch slices

Tempeh:

  • 1          package (8 ounces) Lightlife Original Tempeh
  • 1          teaspoon vegetable oil
  • 2          tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2          cups baby spinach or kale
  • 2          cups cooked tri-color quinoa, at room temperature
  • 1/2       ripe avocado, cubed
  • 1/2       cup canned chickpeas, rinsed and drained
  • 6          red grape cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 6          yellow grape cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1/2       cup pea shoots
  1. To make pickled pink onions: In small pot, bring white wine vinegar, sugar and salt to boil. Add onions and toss to coat 15 seconds. Turn off heat and let sit 20 minutes, stirring occasionally, until onions are soft and bright pink. Set aside.
  2. To make sesame ginger vinaigrette: In small bowl, stir vegetable and sesame oils with ginger, rice wine vinegar, soy sauce and sesame seeds. Pour into two small ramekins. Set aside.
  3. To make sweet potatoes: In large nonstick skillet over medium heat, heat olive oil. Add sweet potato slices and cook, turning occasionally, 15-17 minutes, adjusting heat as necessary until tender when pierced with knife. Remove to cutting board and cut each slice into quarters. Wipe out skillet.
  4. To make tempeh: Cut tempeh crosswise into eight triangles. In nonstick skillet over medium-low heat, heat vegetable oil. Cook tempeh with soy sauce until golden brown and warm, 2-3 minutes per side. Remove tempeh from pan and add baby spinach or kale; stir 1-2 minutes just until wilted.
  5. To assemble bowls: On bottoms of two shallow bowls or plates, spread cooked quinoa. Top with piles of warm sweet potatoes, pickled pink onions, sauteed spinach or kale, avocado, chickpeas, grape tomatoes and pea shoots. Top with tempeh and serve with sesame ginger vinaigrette.

Source: Lightlife

Meal Ideas 18 November 2020

Put a Zesty Spin on Weeknight Meals

(Family Features) Dinner in many households means foolproof recipes that families can count on, but those can become bland and boring. Finding new ways to put a twist on meals throughout the week adds fun to time spent in the kitchen while bringing new flavor to the table.

To help reinvigorate traditional weeknight dinners, chef Bobby Flay and Hidden Valley Ranch created the three-part Hidden Valley Ranch Night! series to debut dishes that bring bold flavor to traditional meals, such as these recipes for Ranch Crusted Burgers with Avocado Ranch Sauce and Ranch Seasoned Chicken and Mushroom Quesadillas with Tomato Salsa and Sour Cream. The series will provide a spin on weeknight staples to showcase the simplicity, versatility and zesty flavor of ranch seasoning when used to create family-friendly dinners any night of the week.

Find more information, including series episodes and additional recipes, at hiddenvalley.com/ranch-night.

Ranch Crusted Burgers with Avocado Ranch Sauce

Servings: 4

Avocado Ranch Sauce:

  • 1/4       cup mayonnaise
  • 1/4       cup sour cream
  • 1          tablespoon well-shaken buttermilk
  • 1/2       teaspoon Hidden Valley Ranch Seasoning
  • kosher salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 3          green onions, thinly sliced
  • 2          avocados, peeled, pitted and diced

Ranch Spice Crusted Burger:

  • 1 1/2    teaspoons Hidden Valley Ranch Seasoning
  • 1          teaspoon paprika
  • kosher salt
  • freshly ground pepper
  • 1 1/2    pounds ground chuck (80% lean)
  • 2          tablespoons canola oil
  • 8          slices American cheese
  • 1/4       cup water
  • 4          brioche buns, split in half
  • Avocado Ranch Sauce
  1. To make avocado ranch sauce: In bowl, whisk mayonnaise, sour cream, buttermilk, ranch seasoning, salt and pepper until smooth. Fold in green onions and diced avocados; set aside.
  2. To make burgers: In small bowl, whisk ranch seasoning, paprika, salt and pepper.
  3. Heat large cast-iron pan or griddle over high heat. Divide meat into four 6-ounce patties and make deep depression in centers with thumb. Season each with spice rub on one side.
  4. Add canola oil to pan and heat until shimmering. Place on burgers in pan, spice side down, and cook until golden brown and lightly charred, 4 minutes. Turn burgers over and cook 4 minutes, or until they reach desired doneness.
  5. Top each burger with two slices cheese. Add water to pan and cover tightly with lid 10 seconds, or until the cheese is melted.
  6. Place burgers on bottom buns and top each with avocado ranch sauce and top buns.

Ranch Seasoned Chicken and Mushroom Quesadillas with Tomato Salsa and Sour Cream

Servings: 4

Tomato Salsa:

  • 4          plum tomatoes, seeded and finely diced
  • 1/2       small red onion, finely diced
  • 1/2       jalapeno, finely diced
  • 1          lime, juice only
  • 2          tablespoons olive oil
  • 3          tablespoons fresh basil, finely chopped into ribbons
  • kosher salt
  • freshly ground black pepper

Quesadillas:

  • 2          tablespoons canola oil
  • 1 1/2    pounds cremini or button mushrooms, thinly sliced
  • 2          teaspoons Hidden Valley Ranch Seasoning, divided
  • 12        flour tortillas (6 inches)
  • 2          cups shredded Monterey Jack cheese
  • 16        ounces roasted or rotisserie chicken, shredded
  • kosher salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • canola oil
  • 1/2       cup sour cream
  • tomato salsa
  • 2          tablespoons fresh basil, chopped
  1. To make tomato salsa: In medium bowl, combine tomatoes, red onion, jalapeno, lime juice, olive oil and basil; season with salt and pepper. Refrigerate until ready to use.
  2. To make quesadillas: Preheat oven to 450 F.
  3. In large saute pan over medium-high heat, heat oil. Add mushrooms and season with 1 1/2 teaspoons ranch seasoning. Cook until mushrooms are golden brown and liquid has evaporated. Set aside to cool.
  4. Place tortillas next to each other on baking sheet. Sprinkle thin layer of cheese on eight tortillas. Add cooled mushrooms to four tortillas and shredded chicken to other four tortillas. Season each layer with salt and pepper. Stack tortillas to create four, two-layer quesadillas. Cover each with remaining tortillas; brush top tortillas lightly with canola oil and sprinkle with remaining ranch seasoning.
  5. Bake 6-8 minutes until cheese is melted and tortillas turn lightly golden brown with crispy edges.
  6. Cut each quesadilla into four pieces. Garnish each slice with dollop of sour cream. Add dollop of tomato salsa on top of sour cream and garnish with basil.

Source: Hidden Valley Ranch

Ethnic 09 November 2020

Uncovering the Top Mexican Food Trends for 2021

(Family Features) Many families constantly search for meal inspiration, and one of the best ways is to look toward trendy tastes for new options to add to the menu.

One of the country’s top Hispanic food brands, Cacique, tapped culinary experts and chefs Aarón Sánchez, Bricia Lopez and Santiago Gomez to curate the third annual “What’s Next in Mexican Cuisine” trends forecast uncovering popular flavors, techniques and dishes to expect in the coming year.

“One way we can all honor the impact of Latin culture in America is through food,” Sánchez said. “One easy step you can take to connect with a culture is by using authentic ingredients, like in this Chorizo Ragu with Cheesy Toast, which uses three staple Mexican ingredients – queso fresco, crema Mexicana and chorizo. It’s inspired by my prediction that Mexican comfort foods and deep, rich sauces made from scratch will rise in popularity.”

Consider these top Mexican food trends for 2021 according to Sánchez, Lopez and Gomez along with findings from a survey conducted by OnePoll on behalf of Cacique:

  • The bread baking craze of 2020 will now include homemade corn and flour tortillas with 55% of Americans reaching for masa harina, flour and tortilla presses to make their own.
  • Americans have a thirst for dehydrated chiles with varieties ranging from pasillas to anchos set to become more popular in American kitchens. 
  • Dried chiles, beans and cheeses such as queso fresco will find their way into more American kitchens as people adopt a “from scratch” approach and back-to-basics techniques. 
  • Coziness, meet Cozumel as Mexican comfort foods reign supreme and people gravitate toward nostalgic “homemade” style favorites like enchiladas.
  • Get ready to dive into deep, rich sauces, including mole, which will continue to grow in popularity.
  • Salsa macha will share the spotlight thanks to exploration of the breadth of salsa varieties that exist within Mexican cuisine. 
  • Food exploration will satisfy Americans’ wanderlust as 55% plan to travel less in 2021, and the same percentage report they’re looking to learn the stories behind famous Mexican recipes. 

To find more trend-inspired recipes, visit caciqueinc.com.

Chorizo Ragu with Cheesy Toast

Recipe courtesy of chef Aarón Sánchez

  • 3          bolillo-style rolls or 1 long baguette
  • 2          tablespoons olive oil 
  • 1          yellow or white onion, chopped
  • 2-3       carrots, chopped
  • 1⁄2       teaspoon salt
  • 6          cloves garlic, divided
  • 8          ounces white or cremini mushrooms, chopped
  • 2          tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1          tablespoon dried oregano 
  • 1          teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 1⁄4    pounds ground beef
  • 1          package (9 ounces) Cacique Pork Chorizo
  • 1          can (28 ounces) crushed or pureed tomatoes
  • 6          tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  • 9          tablespoons Cacique Crema Mexicana, plus additional for serving
  • 1 1⁄2    cups crumbled Cacique Ranchero Queso Fresco
  1. Preheat oven to 400 F. Halve bread lengthwise.
  2. In heavy-bottomed pot, warm olive oil over medium heat. Add onions, carrots and salt then cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables just start to soften, 3-4 minutes. Mince 2 garlic cloves and add to pot with mushrooms; cook about 3 minutes.
  3. Use spoon to push vegetables to edges of pan then add tomato paste, oregano and cumin to center of pan; saute until fragrant, 1-2 minutes.
  4. Increase heat to high and add beef and pork chorizo. Break meat up with spoon but don’t over-stir. When beef is no longer pink, pour in tomatoes and bring to simmer. Decrease heat to medium-high and let simmer, stirring occasionally.
  5. While ragu simmers, use fork to mash or whip butter with crema until smooth. Mince or finely grate remaining garlic cloves then stir into crema mixture.
  6. Spread crema mixture evenly over bread, trying to cover as much area as possible. Sprinkle crumbled queso fresco all over and place bread on rimmed baking sheet, cheese side up. Toast 4-5 minutes until cheese is melted and bubbling. Finish under broiler 30-60 seconds for deeper browning, if desired. Cut bread into individual portions.
  7. After about 20 minutes of simmering, ragu should thicken and flavors meld. Swirl in additional crema then serve ragu in bowls with cheesy toast or ladle over pieces of toast.

Source: Cacique

Holiday 05 November 2020

Flavorful Holiday Dishes Prepped in Minutes for Small Gatherings

(Family Features) In what’s certain to be a holiday season unlike any other, you can transform your seasonal menu in 20 minutes of prep time or less by incorporating flavorful ingredients that make ordinary dishes extraordinary, ensuring the holidays are as special and memorable as any other year.

Stress-free holiday entertaining at home begins with ingredients like Holland House Cooking Wines that add an extra boost of flavor to recipes like Tuscan White Bean Soup. Perfect for chilly evenings, this recipe combines pantry staples and enticing seasonings for an easy-to-make soup that simmers in the slow cooker. This Sherry, Ham and Cheese Brunch Bake is another delicious and convenient recipe to feed your family on early holiday mornings. This simple, tasty brunch bake can be easily prepped the night before.

While holiday gatherings may be smaller this year, spending time with family can be made even more special when sharing a homemade, holiday-inspired meal. Sherry Cherry Pork Loin Roast, made in a time-saving slow cooker, provides an easy way to bring your family together for a flavorful holiday meal.

This festive season, Holland House Cooking Wines provide an easy way to delight your family. They’re available in four flavors – Marsala, Sherry, White and Red – made using fine grapes and blended seasonings, aged to perfection, to offer bold flavor to your holiday cooking.

Visit hollandhouseflavors.com to find more holiday-worthy dishes.

Sherry Cherry Pork Loin Roast

Recipe courtesy of Cate Meade of “Cate’s Kitchen Fit”
Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 5-6 hours
Servings: 8-10

  • 7          tablespoons avocado or grapeseed oil, divided
  • 2          large Vidalia onions, halved and thinly sliced
  • 4          teaspoons kosher salt, divided
  • 1          pork loin roast (4-4 1/2 pounds), trimmed and patted dry
  • 3          teaspoons freshly ground black pepper, divided

Sherry Cherry Sauce:

  • 3/4       cup Holland House Sherry Cooking Wine
  • 5-6       cloves garlic
  • 1          cup frozen Bing cherries, divided
  • 1 1/2    tablespoons dry mustard powder
  • 4          tablespoons Holland House Balsamic Vinegar
  • 2          tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1          bunch fresh parsley, large stems removed, plus additional reserved for garnish
  • 3          tablespoons cornstarch (optional)
  1. In large slow cooker on high heat, add 2 tablespoons oil, sliced onions and 1 teaspoon salt.
  2. Season roast evenly on all sides with 2 teaspoons salt and 1 tea­spoon pepper.
  3. Place large skillet over medium heat. Add 2 tablespoons oil to pan. Sear pork loin 3 minutes on each side until golden brown. Transfer roast to slow cooker on top of onions.
  4. Cover and cook on low 3 hours.
  5. To make Sherry Cherry Sauce: In blender, blend sherry cooking wine, garlic, 1/2 cup cherries, mustard powder, balsamic vinegar, soy sauce, parsley, remaining olive oil, remaining salt and remaining pepper until smooth; set aside.
  6. After pork loin cooks 3 hours, add Sherry Cherry Sauce around pork roast. Cover and cook 2-3 hours on low.
  7. To glaze, brush roast with warm sauce 3-4 times in last hour of cooking.
  8. Once pork reaches internal temperature of 145 F, remove and let rest 15-20 minutes before slicing.
  9. To finish sauce, remove 1/4 cup cooking liquid and mix with cornstarch to make a slurry. Whisk slurry and remaining cherries into sauce. Cook in slow cooker on high 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  10. Slice roast 1/2-inch thick, garnish with fresh parsley and serve with Sherry Cherry Sauce and braised onions.

Tuscan White Bean Soup

Recipe courtesy of Jillian Wade of “Food, Folks & Fun”
Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 8 hours
Servings: 8

  • 4          cups chicken stock
  • 1          cup Holland House White Cooking Wine
  • 1          can (14 1/2 ounces) diced tomatoes
  • 1          medium yellow onion, diced small
  • 1          cup celery, diced
  • 1          cup carrots, diced
  • 6          large cloves garlic, minced
  • 3          cans (15 1/2 ounces each) cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1          can (13 3/4 ounces) artichoke hearts, rinsed and drained
  • 1          bay leaf
  • 1          teaspoon poultry seasoning
  • 1          teaspoon salt
  • 1          teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/4       teaspoon dried rosemary
  • 4          cups kale (about 6 ounces), cleaned, destemmed and chopped
  • 5          ounces pancetta or bacon, diced
  • 8          teaspoons Parmesan cheese, shaved (for garnish)
  1. Place chicken stock, white cooking wine, tomatoes, onion, celery, carrots, garlic, cannellini beans, artichoke hearts, bay leaf, poultry seasoning, salt, pepper and rosemary in slow cooker. Cover and cook on low 7-8 hours or high 4-5 hours.
  2. About 30 minutes before serving soup, stir in kale and cover.
  3. In 10-inch skillet over medium heat, cook pancetta until crispy, about 4 minutes. Move pancetta to paper towel-lined plate to drain.
  4. Ladle soup into bowls and sprinkle with pancetta and Parmesan cheese shavings.

Sherry, Ham and Cheese Brunch Bake

Recipe courtesy of Jillian Wade of “Food, Folks & Fun”
Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 1 hour, 20 minutes
Servings: 10

  • 8          tablespoons salted butter, melted, plus additional for greasing pan, divided
  • 2          teaspoons olive oil
  • 2          large shallots, minced
  • 1/2       cup Holland House Sherry Cooking Wine
  • 1          package (20 ounces) frozen hash brown potatoes
  • 1/2       teaspoon salt
  • 1/2       teaspoon pepper
  • 2          cups (8 ounces) shredded white cheddar cheese
  • 1          cup (4 ounces) shredded Parmesan cheese
  • 8          ounces precooked ham, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 8          large eggs
  • 1 1/4    cups whole milk
  • 1/2       teaspoon dry mustard powder
  • 2          tablespoons fresh chopped dill
  • 1          teaspoon fresh chopped dill, for garnish (optional)
  • 2          teaspoons freshly grated Parmesan cheese, for garnish (optional)
  1. Move oven rack to middle position and preheat to 400 F. Generously grease 9-by-13-inch baking dish with butter; set aside.
  2. In 10-inch nonstick skillet, add olive oil and preheat pan over medium heat. Add shallots and cook, stirring often, until softened and golden, about 7-8 minutes.
  3. Stir in cooking wine and cook until liquid is evaporated, about 3-5 minutes. Remove from heat.
  4. Add frozen hash browns to prepared baking dish. Pour melted butter over potatoes and add salt, pepper and caramelized shallots.
  5. Use spoon to mix well. Bake 30 minutes, or until potatoes are cooked through and some edges are beginning to brown. Remove potatoes from oven and reduce temperature to 325 F.
  6. Sprinkle cheddar cheese and 1 cup shredded Parmesan cheese evenly over potatoes followed by ham.
  7. In large measuring cup or small bowl, vigorously whisk eggs, milk, mustard powder and dill until fully combined and eggs become frothy, about 1 minute.
  8. Pour egg mixture evenly over potatoes, cheese and ham. Store covered in refrigerator if prepping night before.
  9. Bake 35-40 minutes, or until edges of casserole are golden brown and center of casserole is set.
  10. Cool 5 minutes before slicing and serving. Serve with chopped dill and grated Parmesan cheese, if desired.

Source: Holland House

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