recipes

Breakfast & Brunch 01 February 2024

Guilt-Free, Superfruit Snacking: Sweet treats made to permissibly indulge

(Family Features) For many, enjoying a small indulgence can serve as a reward for a job well done or a mood-boosting pick-me-up. In fact, mindful snacking is on-trend for a majority of consumers.

According to Mondelez International’s Fourth Annual State of Snacking Global Consumer Trends Study, 78% are choosing small indulgences to pamper themselves and 68% are checking nutrition labels on snacks.

With today’s changing palates and the growing demand for sour, less sweet foods and beverages, a superfruit like tart cherries can help snackers permissibly indulge without the guilt. Primarily grown on small family farms in the United States, Montmorency tart cherries – also referred to as sour cherries – are available year-round in dried, juice and juice concentrate, canned and frozen forms.

More than 110 scientific research studies show Montmorency tart cherries are a superfruit. In addition to their sweet-sour taste and unique nutrient profile, research suggests tart cherries – one of the few natural food sources of melatonin – may help improve sleep, aid in exercise recovery, reduce inflammation, ease arthritis symptoms, improve gut health and promote heart health. In fact, in one study published in the “European Journal of Nutrition,” adults who drank Montmorency tart cherry juice slept about 40 minutes longer on average and had up to a 6% increase in sleep efficiency.

While increasingly featured in functional beverages and health-positioned foods, tart cherries can also add drool-worthy flavor to superfruit-infused snacks, such as these Tart Cherry Superfood Banana Splits and Tart Cherry Brownie Bites. Plus, using tart cherries as a favorite ingredient in recipes like these adds a health halo to sweets – reinforcing the trend of permissible indulgences.

As an ideal superfruit snack that makes snacking more satisfying, tart cherries provide delicious flavor and potential health benefits in these recipes and beyond so you can savor the moment and cherish every bite.

Find more tart cherry snack recipes at ChooseCherries.com.

Tart Cherry Superfood Banana Splits

Recipe courtesy of Hannah Zimmerman of Bite Sized Studio on behalf of the U.S. Tart Cherry Industry
Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 20 minutes
Servings: 2

  • 1/2 cup dark chocolate chips
  • 2 cups tart cherry juice
  • 2 ripe bananas
  • 1 cup vanilla Greek yogurt
  • 1/4 cup almond butter
  • 1/4 cup granola
  • 1/4 cup dried tart cherries
  • 1/2 cup frozen tart cherries, thawed
  1. Place chocolate chips in bowl.
  2. In saucepan over medium heat, bring tart cherry juice to simmer about 20 minutes until reduced to 2/3 cup.
  3. Pour juice into bowl and mix until chocolate chips are melted and sauce is smooth.
  4. Cut bananas in half lengthwise and place on two plates. Spoon 1/2 cup Greek yogurt on each banana then drizzle with 2 tablespoons almond butter and 2 tablespoons tart cherry chocolate sauce.
  5. Sprinkle 2 tablespoons granola, 2 tablespoons dried tart cherries and 1/4 cup thawed frozen tart cherries on top of each banana split.

Note: Leftover tart cherry chocolate sauce can be stored in airtight container in refrigerator for later use.

Tart Cherry Brownie Bites

Recipe courtesy of Hannah Zimmerman of Bite Sized Studio on behalf of the U.S. Tart Cherry Industry
Prep time: 10 minutes
Yield: 12 bites

  • 10 medjool dates, pitted
  • 1/2 cup dried tart cherries
  • 1/4 cup walnuts
  • 2 tablespoons rolled oats
  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 1 tablespoon chia or hemp seeds (optional)
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons peanut or almond butter
  • 4 tablespoons tart cherry juice
  • 1/4 cup mini chocolate chips
  • cocoa powder (optional)
  • melted chocolate (optional)
  1. In bowl of food processor, combine dates; dried tart cherries; walnuts; oats; cocoa powder; seeds, if desired; salt; and nut butter. Pulse 30-60 seconds until ingredients are ground into tiny pieces.
  2. Add tart cherry juice in 1 tablespoon additions, pulsing mixture after each addition, until crumbly dough forms.
  3. Transfer dough to bowl and fold in chocolate chips.
  4. Roll dough into 12 balls. Serve plain or finish balls with dusting of cocoa powder or drizzle of melted chocolate, if desired.

Source: Cherry Marketing Institute

Videos 09 January 2024

Cinnamon Chocolate Popcorn

(Family Features) Cozying up to the fireplace or snuggling deeper into a favorite blanket or throw are sure ways to warm yourself on cold days. For an extra touch of coziness, adding a favorite snack to the occasion can help you relax and release the stresses of the day.

Consider a versatile ingredient like popcorn that can help enhance wintertime treats as one of America’s most beloved foods. The seed-to-snack simplicity of popcorn makes it easy to enjoy by the handful on its own or as part of a tasty recipe served by the fire.

This Cinnamon Chocolate Popcorn takes just minutes to prepare and combines two delicious flavors in one easy treat. Quick and delightful, it’s sure to become a family favorite, particularly during the cooler months when chilly forecasts call for comforting snacks.

To find more winter desserts and pop-able snacks, visit popcorn.org.

Watch video to see how to make this recipe!


Cinnamon Chocolate Popcorn

Yield: 3 quarts

  • 3          quarts popped popcorn
  • butter-flavored nonstick cooking spray
  • 9          tablespoons powdered cocoa mix (cocoa sweetened with sugar or sugar substitute)
  • 3          teaspoons cinnamon
  1. Place popcorn in large bowl and lightly spray with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. Sprinkle cocoa mix and cinnamon on popcorn. Toss to coat evenly. Serve immediately.

Source: Popcorn Board

Holiday 30 November 2023

Festive Peppermint Snacks with a Flavorful Pop

(Family Features) Among the many enchanting elements of the holiday season, the family traditions and familiar flavors of favorite foods enjoyed year after year bring loved ones together better than perhaps any other occasion. From decorating wreaths and trees to crafting ornaments and preparing classic recipes, it’s a season of cherishing memories and creating new ones.

While there are countless ingredients that harken to the taste of holidays past, there’s one sweet favorite that truly symbolizes the season: peppermint. Whether enjoyed in the familiar shape of a candy cane – the original kid-favorite – or added to recipes from beverages to desserts and everything in between, it’s a delicious way to connect generations.

For example, these Jingle Balls provide a perfect kid-friendly project to keep them busy rolling popcorn balls in sparkling colored sugar for bite-size bits of holiday magic. They’re equal parts holiday spirit and sweet appetizer, snack or dessert. Just be sure to have an adult melt together the butter, marshmallows and peppermint extract before letting little ones show off their creativity.

White Chocolate Peppermint Popcorn Bark offers another way for everyone to get in on the fun. The taste of peppermint and white chocolate make this a perfect holiday treat for sharing with a crowd. Plus, the easy prep means less time in the kitchen and more time savoring the classic flavors.

Better yet, it makes for a delicious gift to send off with guests as another festive celebration comes to a close. Simply package in a small, clear bag tied off with a colorful bow so loved ones can enjoy the tastes of the season in the days to follow.

These favorites are made possible by the versatility of popcorn, one of America’s most beloved snack foods. Celebrated for its seed-to-snack simplicity, popcorn’s smell, taste and versatility mean it can enhance any occasion as a budget-friendly solution for family gatherings.

Discover more delicious holiday snacks at popcorn.org.

Jingle Balls

Yield: 12 cups

  • Nonstick cooking spray
  • 12 cups popped popcorn
  • 6 tablespoons butter or margarine
  • 3 cups mini marshmallows
  • 1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract
  • assorted colored sugars
  1. Lightly spray large mixing bowl with nonstick cooking spray. Add popcorn.
  2. Spread plastic wrap on cookie sheet; set aside.
  3. In medium saucepan, melt butter and marshmallows; stir until mixture is smooth. Stir in peppermint extract. Pour over popcorn, mixing until well coated. Let cool 2 minutes.
  4. Spray hands with cooking spray and form popcorn mixture into 3-inch balls. Gently press colored sugar onto balls. Let sit on prepared cookie sheet until cool and set.

White Chocolate Peppermint Popcorn Bark

Yield: 1 pound

  • 5 cups popped popcorn
  • 12 ounces white chocolate baking chips, chopped white chocolate or white candy coating
  • 1 cup crushed hard candy peppermints
  1. Cover baking pan with foil or wax paper; set aside.
  2. Place popcorn in large bowl; set aside.
  3. In double boiler over barely simmering water, melt chocolate, stirring until smooth, or melt according to package directions. Stir in crushed peppermints.
  4. Pour chocolate mixture over popcorn mixture and stir to coat. Spread onto prepared pan; cool completely.
  5. When chocolate is cooled and set, break into chunks for serving.
  6. Store in airtight container at room temperature.

Source: Popcorn Board

Holiday 10 November 2023

Ring in the Holidays with Regionally Inspired Recipes

(Family Features) When Thanksgiving hosts and their guests ponder must-have desserts, one of the most common favorites is an oh-so-delicious pie. More specifically, with nearly endless possibilities and its familiar festive flavor, pecan pie is one of America’s most beloved holiday treats.


From nods to the Northeast’s love of maple to celebrating sweet tastes of the West Coast with a citrus twist, the American Pecan Promotion Board is celebrating regionally inspired recipes. While the classic pecan pie is a hit at the Thanksgiving table, you can make it a perfect palette for creativity this year by enjoying local flavors that take the festivities up a notch.

For example, putting a festive spin on the holiday favorite can be as easy as this sweet and savory Bourbon Bacon Pecan Pie that’s a mouthwatering take on tradition. Or, if you’re in need of a quick snack everyone can share while mingling, opt for this Chocolate Cherry Pecan Snack Mix that takes just 20 minutes to prepare. It includes chocolate-glazed pecans tossed with yogurt-covered raisins, pretzels and dried tart cherries – a staple of the North.

When it comes to pecans, great taste is just the beginning. They’re the ultimate supernut due to their flavor versatility and nutritional benefits. Next time you’re shopping for pie ingredients, remember you can pick up an extra bag to add to favorite appetizers, snacks, meals, desserts and more all holiday season long.

Find more regional recipe inspiration by visiting eatpecans.com.

Bourbon Bacon Pecan Pie

Recipe courtesy of Emily Caruso of "Jelly Toast" on behalf of the American Pecan Promotion Board
Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 70 minutes
Servings: 10

  • 1 pie dough (9 inches)
  • 4 strips thick-cut bacon
  • 1/2 cup dark corn syrup
  • 1/2 cup light corn syrup
  • 1 cup light brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 2 tablespoons bourbon
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 1/2 cups raw pecan halves
  1. Place baking sheet in oven. Preheat oven to 350 F.
  2. Gently line pie pan with rolled out pie dough. Press into edges and up sides. Use fingers or fork to create decorative edge. Set aside.
  3. In skillet, fry bacon until crisp. Remove from pan and drain on paper towels then chop into small pieces and set aside. Reserve 1/4 cup bacon grease.
  4. In large bowl, whisk dark corn syrup, light corn syrup, brown sugar, reserved bacon grease, butter and bourbon. Add eggs and salt; whisk until mixture is even. Fold in pecan halves and chopped bacon.
  5. Pour mixture into pie crust and spread evenly with spatula. Gently cover edges of pie crust with aluminum foil. Place pie on preheated baking sheet and bake 60-70 minutes, or until pie is set in center.
  6. Remove pie from oven and cool completely before serving or chilling.

Notes: Pie can be made 1 day ahead and refrigerated overnight. Allow pie to come to room temperature before serving.

Chocolate Cherry Pecan Snack Mix

Recipe courtesy of Emily Caruso of "Jelly Toast" on behalf of the American Pecan Promotion Board
Prep time: 5 minutes
Cook time: 20 minutes
Servings: 20

  • 1 large egg white
  • 1/4 cup light brown sugar
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 1 1/2 cups pecan halves
  • 1 cup dried tart cherries
  • 1 cup small pretzels
  • 3/4 cup yogurt-covered raisins
  1. Heat oven to 325 F.
  2. In bowl, whisk egg white, brown sugar, cocoa powder, vanilla extract and salt until well blended. Add water to thin mixture slightly. Fold in pecan halves until well coated. Spread mixture onto parchment-lined baking sheet.
  3. Bake 15-20 minutes, or until mixture is well set. Stir mixture several times during baking. Allow pecans to cool completely and transfer to bowl. Mix in dried cherries, pretzels and raisins.

Source: American Pecan Promotion Board

Videos 12 October 2023

Chocolate Covered Pumpkin Pretzels

(Culinary.net) A sweet and savory treat, these Chocolate Covered Pumpkin Pretzels will disappear scary fast at your next Halloween party. With just three ingredients, they’re easy to make and share with guests of all ages.

Visit Culinary.net to find more quick, simple treats.

Watch video to see how to make this recipe!


Chocolate Covered Pumpkin Pretzels

Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 5 minutes
Yield: about 36 pretzels

  • 3/4       cup orange candy melts
  • 1          bag (16 ounces) mini pretzel twists
  • 1/4       cup mini green coated chocolate candies
  1. Line baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
  2. In medium microwave-safe bowl, melt candy melts 30 seconds then stir. Working in 15-second intervals, continue microwaving until melted and smooth, stirring between intervals. With fork or dipping utensil, dip 36 mini pretzel twists, one at a time, into melted orange chocolate and gently tap side of bowl to remove excess.
  3. Lay each covered pretzel on parchment paper. Using remaining pretzel twists, break apart enough to equal 1/4 cup.
  4. Place one mini green chocolate candy (to form leaf) and one broken pretzel piece (to form stem) on top of each dipped pretzel. Repeat with remaining pretzels and chocolate candies.
  5. Let set until solid. Pretzels can harden on counter about 30 minutes, or placed in refrigerator or freezer 5-10 minutes.
Videos 28 July 2023

Strawberries and Cream Popcorn

(Family Features) Perfect for a picnic, celebrating a birthday or just enjoying time with family and friends, the classic combination of strawberries and cream serves as both a sweet treat and a crowd favorite.

This version adds another tasty treat – popcorn – so you can triple down on deliciousness. With just three ingredients, it’s easy to make and ideal for sharing. Simply drizzle popcorn with melted white chocolate chips and top with pulsed freeze-dried strawberries for a kid- and adult-friendly flavor trio.

An added benefit: Popcorn is a whole grain that’s 100% unprocessed with no additives, hidden ingredients or GMOs while providing nutrients like zinc, magnesium, B vitamins and fiber. At just 30 calories per cup of air-popped popcorn, it’s an energy-providing snack full of complex carbohydrates.

Visit Popcorn.org to find more sweet snacking solutions.

Watch video to see how to make this recipe!


Strawberries and Cream Popcorn

Servings: 4-6

  • 1/4       cup freeze-dried strawberries
  • 6          cups popped popcorn
  • 1          cup white chocolate chips, melted
  1. In small food processor or spice grinder, pulse freeze-dried strawberries until finely ground.
  2. Place popcorn in large bowl. Drizzle melted chocolate over top; toss until well coated. Sprinkle evenly with ground freeze-dried strawberries; toss until well coated.
  3. Scrape onto large parchment paper-lined baking sheet, spreading into even layer.
  4. Let stand at room temperature 30-60 minutes, or until chocolate is set and hardened. To serve, break into pieces.

Tips: To melt chocolate: In heatproof bowl over saucepan of barely simmering water, stir chocolate chips 3-5 minutes, or until smooth.

To melt chocolate in microwave: In microwave-safe bowl or measuring cup, microwave chocolate on medium heat 1-2 minutes, stirring every 30 seconds, or until smooth and melted.

Source: Popcorn Board

Appetizers & Sides 27 July 2023

Fuel for Full Days of Learning

(Family Features) Between morning routines, days spent in the classroom, extracurriculars and homework, it may seem like there’s never enough time in the day during the school year. However, making time for tasty meals and snacks doesn’t have to be another burden on jam-packed schedules.

These quick recipes for a flavorful twist on a breakfast favorite, easy-to-make sliders featuring kid-friendly flavors and delightful treats to enjoy at the end of the day can help keep little learners (and older family members, too) fueled up and ready to tackle all the school year throws their way.

Find more recipes to get you through busy back-to-school season at Culinary.net.

Simple, Kid-Friendly Sliders

For those busy school nights when time is at a premium and you need to get a meal on the table quickly, these simple yet savory Pepperoni Pizza Sliders can be a perfect solution. A modified take on a kid favorite – pizza – they’re easy to make after work and extracurricular activities to steal a few moments of family time enjoying the cheesy pepperoni goodness before completing homework and beginning preparations for a new day.

Pepperoni Pizza Sliders

Recipe adapted from MilkMeansMore.org

  • 1 package slider rolls
  • 1/2 cup pizza sauce
  • 1/2 cup mini pepperoni
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded, low-moisture, part-skim mozzarella cheese
  • 1/4 cup butter, melted
  • 1 teaspoon parsley flakes
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
  • nonstick cooking spray
  1. Heat oven to 350 F.
  2. Keeping rolls connected, cut sheet of rolls horizontally, separating tops from bottoms. Place bottom halves of rolls in baking dish.
  3. Spread pizza sauce evenly over bottom halves. Sprinkle pepperoni over sauce. Sprinkle mozzarella over pepperoni and cover with top halves of rolls.
  4. Mix melted butter with parsley flakes, dried oregano, garlic powder and shredded Parmesan cheese. Spoon evenly over sliders.
  5. Cover baking dish with aluminum foil sprayed with nonstick cooking spray to keep cheese from sticking.
  6. Bake 20 minutes.
  7. Remove foil and bake additional 5-10 minutes, or until Parmesan is melted and golden brown.
    Cut sliders and serve immediately.

A Fresh-Baked After-School Sweet

After a long day of learning or a tough homework assignment, many kids love a warm, chocolatey homemade cookie. Once your kiddos pack away the calculators and put their pencils down, serve up an ooey-gooey delight as a reward for all that hard work.

These Brown Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies are ready in just 30 minutes and made with high-quality ingredients you can count on like C&H Dark Brown Sugar for that familiar homemade flavor.

Find more sweet after-school desserts at chsugar.com.

Brown Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 15 minutes
Yield: 18 cookies

  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/4 cups C&H Dark Brown Sugar
  • 2 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup chopped pecans, toasted
  • 1 1/2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
  1. In medium saucepan over medium heat, melt butter and cook until foaming and golden brown. Remove from heat and transfer to heatproof bowl. Place in refrigerator until solidified, about 45 minutes.
  2. In medium bowl, whisk flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Set aside.
  3. Once butter has solidified, remove from refrigerator. In bowl of electric stand mixer, using paddle attachment, beat butter and sugar at medium speed 2-3 minutes until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, and vanilla. Mix until combined. Scrape sides of bowl as needed. Reduce speed, add flour mixture and beat to combine. Add pecans and chocolate chips; mix at low speed until combined. Place dough in refrigerator and rest 30 minutes.
  4. Preheat oven to 350 F and line baking sheets with parchment paper.
  5. Using 2-ounce ice cream scoop, portion out dough on prepared baking sheets, spacing about 3 inches apart. Gently flatten dough balls using palm.
  6. Bake 13-15 minutes, or until golden brown. Allow cookies to cool on baking sheets 10 minutes then transfer to wire rack. Serve warm.

A Traditional Breakfast with a Twist

The same bowl of cereal can get boring after eating it for breakfast day in and day out. You may find yourself looking for something new and exciting to start school day mornings on the right foot.

Kids can be picky when it comes to breakfast foods, but this recipe for Sausage French Toast Roll-Ups is a quick and easy way to fill their bellies with a taste of several flavors they may already love. A sizzling sausage link wrapped with French toast, it combines a favorite breakfast protein and traditional deliciousness in one roll.

Sausage French Toast Roll-Ups

Servings: 12

  • 12 sausage links
  • 2 eggs
  • 2/3 cup milk
  • 3 teaspoons almond extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 6 bread slices, crust removed, cut in half
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • syrup
  1. In skillet, cook sausage links according to package directions. Set aside.
  2. In medium bowl, whisk eggs, milk, almond extract and cinnamon.
  3. Dip bread slice in egg mixture. Wrap bread slice around cooked sausage link, pressing seam to keep from unrolling. Repeat with remaining bread slices and sausage links.
  4. In large skillet over medium-high heat, melt butter. Place roll-ups in skillet, seam-sides down, and cook until all sides are browned, approximately 10 minutes.
  5. Drizzle with syrup.

Source: C&H Sugar

Meal Ideas 10 July 2023

Power Family Favorites with Peanut Protein

(Family Features) Soaking up some sun and sharing a meal with family and friends brings people together, especially when favorite recipes are on the table. Whether there’s a cause for celebration or a gathering of loved ones is simply overdue, serving up delicious dishes is a sure bet to get everyone involved.

These flavorful Mexinut Dip, Beef and Peanut Empanadas with Chimichurri, Asian Peanut Slaw and Peanut Butter Banana Pops recipes are ideal for the whole family. Starting with a spicy dip best paired with corn chips or crackers, hungry guests can work their way up to the main course of savory empanadas served alongside a tangy Asian slaw. Finally, kids and adults alike can cap off the celebration with a sweet, fruity dessert.

Leaning into a versatile ingredient like peanuts, which make all these dishes possible, can take your gatherings to the next level. They complement a wide range of recipes from appetizers and snacks to main courses and desserts.

Plus, they contain 26% protein and fulfill approximately 30% of a 4-6-year-old’s and 26% of a 7-10-year-old’s recommended daily allowance per serving, making them a kid-favorite source of energy. They contain six essential vitamins – vitamin E, folate, riboflavin, thiamin, niacin and vitamin B6 – and seven essential minerals – phosphorus, iron, magnesium, potassium, zinc, copper and calcium.

Often referred to as “nutrition in a nutshell,” there’s a good chance your peanut supply came from the United States’ leading grower: Georgia. With approximately 4,000 active peanut farmers, the state produces 52% of the country’s peanuts.

To find more family-friendly recipe ideas powered by peanuts, visit GAPeanuts.com.

Mexinut Dip

Recipe courtesy of the Georgia Peanut Commission
Yield: 4 cup

  • 1 can (11 1/2 ounces) condensed bean with bacon soup
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1 can (10 ounces) tomatoes and green chiles
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped onion
  • 1 tablespoon hot chili powder
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter
  • corn chips or crackers
  1. In 2-quart microwave-safe container, combine soup, cheddar cheese, tomatoes and green chiles, onion, chili powder and peanut butter. Cover with glass or plastic lid.
  2. Microwave on high 2 1/2 minutes; stir. Microwave 2 1/2 minutes, or until cheese is melted.
  3. Stir before serving with corn chips or crackers.

Beef and Peanut Empanadas with Chimichurri

Recipe courtesy of "Set the Table" on behalf of the Georgia Peanut Commission
Yield: 30-40 small empanadas

Spicy Beef and Peanut Empanadas:

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 small yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 large garlic clove, minced
  • 1/3 cup golden raisins
  • 1/2 cup raw Georgia Peanuts
  • 2 tablespoons pickled jalapenos, chopped
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tablespoon water, plus additional for sealing dough
  • salt, to taste
  • pepper, to taste
  • 2 packages pie crust
  • 1 egg white, in small bowl

Chimichurri:

  • 1/3 cup flat leaf parsley
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 3 garlic cloves, peeled and roughly chopped
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • salt, to taste
  • pepper, to taste
  1. To make spicy beef and peanut empanadas: In large skillet over medium-high heat, heat olive oil. Add onion, red pepper flakes, garlic, raisins, peanuts and jalapenos. Cook until onion and garlic are soft and fragrant. Add ground beef and brown thoroughly. Stir in Worcestershire sauce and 1 tablespoon water. Cook 2-3 minutes, stirring to prevent burning. Season with salt and pepper, to taste; transfer filling to large bowl and cool.
  2. Preheat oven to 375 F.
  3. Unroll pie crusts on lightly floured work surface. Using round cutter at least 3 inches in diameter, cut out rounds.
  4. Using rolling pin, roll out edges of each circle, leaving center of circle at its original thickness.
  5. Holding one round of dough in palm of hand, scoop about 1 tablespoon filling into center. Using fingertip, line edge of dough with water, fold into half moon shape and pinch to seal. For extra ease, use fork.
  6. Place filled empanadas on parchment-lined baking sheet and brush tops with egg white.
  7. Bake 20-25 minutes on upper rack.
  8. To make chimichurri: In blender or food processor, pulse parsley, oregano, garlic, red wine vinegar, red pepper flakes and olive oil 2-3 times. Season with salt and pepper, to taste, and serve in small bowl for dipping.

Asian Peanut Slaw

Recipe courtesy of the Georgia Peanut Commission

  • 1 can (11 ounces) mandarin oranges
  • 1/4 cup Asian sesame dressing
  • 2 tablespoons creamy peanut butter
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 1/2 cup coarsely chopped dry roasted peanuts
  • 1 bag (16 ounces) three-colored deli slaw mix
  • chow mein noodles
  1. Drain juice from mandarin oranges into mixing bowl and reserve oranges.
  2. In bowl with juice, add dressing, peanut butter and red pepper; whisk until well blended. Add peanuts, oranges and coleslaw mix; toss until thoroughly coated.
  3. Garnish with chow mein noodles before serving.

Peanut Butter Banana Pops

Recipe courtesy of registered dietitian Annessa Chumbley on behalf of the Georgia Peanut Commission
Yield: 8 pops

  • Craft sticks
  • 4 firm, ripe bananas, peeled and halved crosswise
  • 1 cup melted chocolate wafers
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped peanuts

Toppings:

  • unsweetened coconut flakes (optional)
  • chopped dried pineapple (optional)
  • chopped dried strawberries (optional)
  • melted peanut butter chips (optional)
  1. Insert one craft stick into each banana half. Place eight banana pops in single layer on small tray covered with parchment paper. Place tray in freezer at least 4 hours or overnight.
  2. Pour melted chocolate into bowl. Dip each frozen banana into bowl, turning to coat. Lay chocolate-covered bananas back on parchment paper. Sprinkle with chopped peanuts. Sprinkle with coconut flakes, pineapple and strawberries, if desired. Drizzle with melted peanut butter chips, if desired.

Source: Georgia Peanut Commission

 

Dessert 27 June 2023

Family Fun with a Pop: Kid-friendly snacks and treats perfect for sharing

(Family Features) When hunger strikes and family fun calls for a snack to keep the excitement going, take your kiddos to the kitchen to whip up a tasty treat for all to enjoy. Whether you’re celebrating a special occasion or watching favorite movies, turn to an ingredient like popcorn that encourages creativity. Plus, it’s a delicious way for adults to turn back the clock and recreate childhood memories while making new ones with the family.

Consider these popcorn-inspired snacks to serve during your next adventure:

  • Take yourself back in time to your own childhood with a classic pairing that never goes out of style: Peanut Butter and Jelly Popcorn. This version offers a fun way to jazz up popcorn for kids and adults alike with a sprinkling of strawberries and dried cranberries on top for added nutrition.
  • When it’s time for a little fun in the sun or a trip to the park, sweeten up the celebration with this Graham Cracker Picnic Mix that’s a flavorful, kid-favorite combination of popcorn, bear-shaped graham crackers, marshmallows, fudge-covered pretzels and miniature cookies.
  • Pizza is hard to beat as a snacking solution the whole family can enjoy, and this Grab and Go Pizza Popcorn is no exception. Ready in just minutes by mixing popcorn, Parmesan cheese and seasonings, little ones can help prepare a batch quickly before heading out the door.
  • Colorful and fun, these Minty Green Popcorn Clusters are simple to make and a perfect treat to share. Just melt together marshmallows, butter, salt, green food coloring and peppermint extract before tossing with popcorn and green candy-coated chocolates.

To find more family-friendly snack time favorites, visit Popcorn.org.

Peanut Butter and Jelly Popcorn

Servings: 4-6

  • 8 cups popcorn
  • 2 tablespoons raspberry jam
  • 1/2 cup white chocolate chips
  • 3 tablespoons smooth natural peanut butter
  • 1/4 cup freeze-dried strawberries
  • 1/4 cup dried cranberries
  1. In large bowl, stir popcorn and jam until evenly coated. Transfer to parchment paper-lined baking sheet.
  2. In small heatproof bowl over small saucepan of barely simmering water, add white chocolate chips and peanut butter. Cook, stirring occasionally, 3-5 minutes, or until smooth and melted.
  3. Drizzle peanut butter mixture over popcorn mixture. Sprinkle with strawberries and cranberries.
  4. Refrigerate 10 minutes, or until peanut butter mixture is set; break into pieces to serve. Store in airtight container in refrigerator up to 1 week.

Graham Cracker Picnic Mix

Yield: About 12 cups

  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 5-6 drops pink neon liquid food color or desired color
  • 1/2 cup unpopped popcorn kernels
  • 1 package mini pastel marshmallows
  • 1 cup bear-shaped graham crackers
  • 1 package white fudge-covered pretzels
  • 1 cup mini cookies
  1. In large pot over medium heat, stir oil, sugar and food coloring.
  2. Stir in popcorn kernels; cover. Cook until popcorn begins to pop. Shake pot over heat until popping slows.
  3. Remove pan from heat and pour popcorn into large bowl.
  4. Add marshmallows, graham crackers, pretzels and cookies then toss lightly.

Grab and Go Pizza Popcorn

Yield: 6 quarts

  • 6 quarts popped popcorn
  • olive oil cooking spray
  • 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 teaspoons garlic salt
  • 2 teaspoons paprika
  • 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
  1. Place popcorn in large, sealable plastic container or 2 1/2-gallon plastic sealable bag.
  2. Spray popcorn lightly with cooking spray.
  3. Sprinkle cheese, garlic salt, paprika and Italian seasoning over popcorn and shake to distribute evenly.
  4. To serve, scoop popcorn into reusable plastic cups.

Minty Green Popcorn Clusters

Yield: 32 clusters

  • 12 cups unsalted, unbuttered, popped popcorn
  • 4 cups mini marshmallows
  • 2 tablespoons butter or light olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon green food coloring
  • 1/4 teaspoon peppermint extract
  • 1 cup green candy-coated chocolate candies
  1. Place popcorn in large mixing bowl.
  2. In saucepan over medium heat, melt marshmallows, butter and salt, stirring occasionally, until smooth. Remove from heat; stir in food coloring and peppermint extract.
  3. Toss marshmallow mixture with popcorn; cool 2-3 minutes, or until cool enough to handle. Toss with chocolate candies.
  4. Shape 3 tablespoons of popcorn mixture into small cluster; repeat with remaining popcorn mixture. Place on wax paper-lined baking sheet; cool completely.

Source:

Popcorn Board

Videos 01 March 2023

Vegan Brownies

(Family Features) The next time a healthy conscience keeps you from enjoying that sweet treat you’re craving, remember that making healthy swaps is all it takes to make those favorite desserts a little better for you.

These Vegan Brownies, for example, are perfect for chocolate lovers looking for a sweet they can enjoy without ditching healthy eating habits. By using versatile California Prunes as a natural sweetener, you can replace processed sugar, fats and eggs in all kinds of recipes. Plus, prunes also add nutrients important for bone and gut health to your everyday diet.

With copper that aids in bone structure along with boron and polyphenols that help with the regulation of bone building and bone breakdown, you can feel good enjoying your family’s favorites while staying on track with health goals. Prunes are also known as a “good gut food,” meaning a single serving (4-5 prunes) can help support a healthy microbiome. High in vitamin K, they can also help improve calcium balance and promote bone mineralization.

Visit californiaprunes.org to find more delicious, better-for-you desserts.

Watch video to see how to make this recipe!

Vegan Brownies

Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 25 minutes
Servings: 9

Prune Puree:

  • 16        ounces pitted California prunes
  • 1/2       cup hot water

Brownies:

  • 2          teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/4       cup cocoa powder
  • 1          tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 1/2    cups all-purpose flour
  • 10        ounces California prune puree
  • 2          cups light brown sugar
  • 1/2       cup California extra-virgin olive oil
  • 6          ounces unsweetened chocolate
  • nonstick cooking spray
  • flaky sea salt, for garnish
  1. To make prune puree: In blender, combine prunes and water. Pulse to combine then blend until smooth, pourable consistency forms, scraping sides, if necessary.
  2. Store puree in airtight container in fridge up to 4 weeks.
  3. To make brownies: Preheat oven to 350 F. Line 9-by-9-inch baking pan with parchment paper then lightly grease with nonstick cooking spray.
  4. Using double boiler, melt chocolate and olive oil. Whisk in sugar and prune puree; mix until dissolved.
  5. Into large bowl, sift flour, baking powder and cocoa powder. Gently fold in chocolate and prune mixture then add vanilla.
  6. Spread batter in prepared pan, sprinkle with flaky sea salt and bake 20-25 minutes, or until top starts to look dry and brownies are just beginning to pull away from sides of pan.
  7. Cool in pan. Remove then cut brownies into 3-inch squares.

Source: California Prunes

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