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

Snacks 30 June 2023

Turn to Whole Grains for a Nutritional Boost

(Family Features) Nutritious eating, including smarter snacking, is an important way to protect your heart and maintain overall health and wellness. While many people understand the basics of healthy eating – avoiding too many sugary treats, for example – some are confused about important food categories that can impact nutrition.

According to a survey conducted by The Harris Poll on behalf of the American Heart Association, U.S. adults are least knowledgeable about refined vs. whole grains compared to other food categories like fruits, vegetables and proteins. Whole grains are, in fact, a key feature of the Association’s recommendations for a heart-healthy diet.

There are two types of grain products: whole grains, which contain the entire grain, and refined grains, which have been milled into a finer texture like flour or meal. Most adults, according to the survey, are able to distinguish whole vs. refined grains. However, there are a few misperceptions.

Most incorrectly believe multi-grain bread is a whole grain. Additionally, only 17% believe sorghum is an example of a whole grain when it is, in fact, a whole grain option. Whole grains like sorghum, oatmeal and brown rice are rich sources of dietary fiber, may improve blood cholesterol levels and provide nutrients that help the body form new cells, regulate the thyroid and maintain a healthy immune system.

These sweet, chewy Date Nut Granola Bars from the American Heart Association’s Healthy for Good initiative, supported by the Sorghum Checkoff, are a perfect go-to snack for enjoying throughout the week. Popped sorghum adds a surprise ingredient for crunchy texture while dry-roasted oats and nuts provide a delicious, toasted flavor.

To discover more whole-grain recipes that can support a healthy heart, visit Heart.org/healthyforgood.

Date Nut Granola Bars

Recipe courtesy of the American Heart Association and Sorghum Checkoff
Servings: 12 (1 bar per serving)

  • Nonstick cooking spray
  • 1 1/2 cups rolled oats
  • 1/4 cup almond slices or whole almonds, coarsely chopped
  • 1/4 cup shelled pistachios, coarsely chopped
  • 1 cup pitted dates
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened dried cranberries
  • 1/4 cup uncooked whole-grain sorghum
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1/4 cup low-sodium peanut butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  1. Preheat oven to 350 F.
  2. Line bottom and sides of 8-inch square baking pan with plastic wrap or parchment paper. Lightly spray with nonstick cooking spray.
  3. On large baking sheet, spread oats, almonds and pistachios in single layer. Bake 10-15 minutes, or until lightly brown, stirring occasionally. Let cool slightly.
  4. In food processor or blender, process dates and cranberries 1-1 1/2 minutes, or until chopped and clumpy. Transfer to large bowl.
  5. Put 2 tablespoons sorghum in silicone microwaveable bowl or clean, brown paper bag. If using microwaveable bowl, cover with lid. If using paper bag, roll shut and place on microwavable dinner plate with fold facing down. Microwave on high 2 minutes, or until there are more than 10 seconds between pops. Repeat with remaining sorghum, microwaving 1 1/2 minutes, or until more than 10 seconds between pops.
  6. Stir popped sorghum, oats, almonds and pistachios into date mixture.
  7. In small saucepan over low heat, heat honey and peanut butter 5 minutes, or until peanut butter is smooth and mixture is warmed, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat. Stir in vanilla and salt.
  8. Pour peanut butter mixture over date mixture, stirring to break into small clumps. Transfer half to baking pan. Using bottom of drinking glass or fingers lightly sprayed with nonstick cooking spray, press down firmly to flatten and pack tightly so clumps adhere to each other. Repeat with remaining half. Freeze, covered, about 1 hour, to firm.
  9. Place cutting board over pan. Turn pan over. Discard plastic wrap. Using knife, cut into 12 bars. Refrigerate leftovers in airtight container up to 1 week.

 

Appetizers & Sides 19 January 2022

5 Reasons to Eat More Tart Cherries

(Family Features) If you want to add superfoods to your diet in the new year, Montmorency tart cherries may be perfect for you.

Montmorency is the variety of tart cherries grown in America, primarily on small family farms. Compared to sweet cherries that are typically eaten fresh during the summer season, tart cherries are available year-round as dried, frozen, canned, juice and juice concentrate.  

Decades of scientific research has shown Montmorency tart cherries are deserving of their superfood reputation. Here are five reasons to enjoy them more often:

  • Sleep: Tart cherries are one of the few food sources of melatonin and have been the focus of multiple sleep studies.
  • Exercise recovery: Tart cherry juice has become a popular exercise recovery drink for athletes.
  • Arthritis and gout: Studies have explored the impact of Montmorency tart cherry juice consumption on gout attacks and arthritis symptoms.
  • Heart health: Montmorency tart cherry research has examined blood pressure and blood lipids.
  • Versatility: Although they remain perfect for pie, tart cherries can easily transition from sweet to savory, adding complex flavors to oatmeal, smoothies, salads, granola bars, trail mix and grain bowls.

Look for dried U.S.-grown tart cherries at the store and online for enjoyment at the start of your day and at night in recipes like Tart Cherry Overnight Oats and Tart Cherry Bedtime Bites.

Find more recipes and scientific research at ChooseCherries.com.

A Dark, Colorful Clue

The deep red color is your clue to the science-based benefits of Montmorency tart cherries. The vibrant hue is due to the concentration of anthocyanins, a type of polyphenol in the flavonoids family that has been widely studied.

Tart Cherry Bedtime Bites

Recipe courtesy of the Cherry Industry Administrative Board
Yield: 12 bites

  • 6 medjool dates, pitted
  • 1/2 cup dried tart cherries
  • 1/2 cup finely shredded coconut flakes
  • 3/4 cup unsalted cashews
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1 pinch fine sea salt
  1. In food processor, process dates until broken into pea-sized bits. Add dried tart cherries, coconut flakes, cashews, almond extract and sea salt; process until combined. Form into 12 balls and chill 2 hours.

Tart Cherry Overnight Oats

Recipe courtesy of the Cherry Industry Administrative Board
Servings: 2

  • 1 cup dried tart cherries, plus additional for topping (optional)
  • 1 cup old-fashioned oats
  • 1 cup almond milk
  • 1/2 cup slivered almonds, plus additional for topping (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons tart cherry concentrate
  • 2 tablespoons chia seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • honey, for topping (optional)
  1. In large jar or container, mix cherries, oats, milk, almonds, cherry concentrate, chia seeds and cinnamon. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
  2. Spoon into bowls and enjoy cold or warmed up. Drizzle with honey or sprinkle with extra dried tart cherries and almonds, if desired.

Source: Cherry Industry Administrative Board

Healthy 09 September 2021

Go for Grapes as a Smart Choice for Health and Wellness

(Family Features) The importance of health and wellness is top of mind for many people. There are many contributing factors to wellness such as diet, physical activity, social engagement and genetics. All are important, but a first step to wellness is choosing healthy foods to fuel the body every day, ideally foods that support health in multiple ways.

Consider grapes from California: they are convenient, healthy, hydrating and provide energy to help support healthy and active lifestyles. Eating grapes is also linked to beneficial impacts on the health of specific body parts and systems, including the heart, brain, skin and colon.

Most of grapes’ health benefits are attributed to the presence of natural plant compounds known as polyphenols, which help promote antioxidant activity and influence biological processes that support overall health. Grapes of all colors – red, green and black – are natural sources of polyphenols.

Fresh California grapes are refreshing by the handful, but they also lend a tasty burst of flavor to a wide range of recipes you can enjoy any time of day. This Heart Smart Smoothie is a deliciously healthy way to start the day; pairing grapes with nuts and seeds in No-Bake Energy Bites delivers a hearty snack to enjoy midday, after school or following a workout; and Quinoa, Cauliflower and Grape Salad is perfect at any mealtime for a powerful combo of both taste and health.

Grapes and a Healthy Brain

Research suggests regularly eating grapes as part of a healthy diet and lifestyle may contribute to improved health outcomes, including brain health.

In a study of people with early memory decline published in “Experimental Gerontology,” subjects were either fed whole grape powder equivalent to just 2 1/4 cups of grapes per day or a placebo powder. The results showed consuming grapes preserved healthy metabolic activity in regions of the brain associated with early Alzheimer’s disease, where metabolic decline takes hold.

Subjects who didn’t consume grapes exhibited significant metabolic decline in these critical regions. Additionally, those consuming the grape-enriched diet showed beneficial changes in regional brain metabolism that correlated to improvements in attention and working memory performance.

Find more nutritious recipes at GrapesFromCalifornia.com .

No-Bake Energy Bites

Prep time: 20 minutes
Yield: 8 energy bites

  • 1/3       cup raw almonds
  • 1/3       cup walnuts
  • 1/2       cup pitted dates
  • 1 1/2    teaspoons fresh orange juice or lemon juice
  • 1          pinch sea salt
  • 8          seedless California grapes
  • 1/3       cup chia or hemp seeds
  1. In bowl of food processor, pulse almonds and walnuts 5-6 times to coarsely chop. Add dates and process until mixture is finely chopped. Add juice and process until just combined; transfer mixture to small plate.
  2. Dry grapes. Pack 1 tablespoon date mixture around each grape, completely covering to seal. Repeat with remaining grapes and date mixture.
  3. Roll balls in seeds to coat. Store in covered container in refrigerator up to three days.

Nutritional information per energy bite: 120 calories; 3 g protein; 12 g carbohydrates; 7 g fat (53% calories from fat); 0.5 g saturated fat (4% calories from saturated fat); 0 mg cholesterol; 20 mg sodium; 3 g fiber.

Heart Smart Grape and Peanut Butter Smoothie

Prep time: 5 minutes
Servings: 1

  • 1          cup red California grapes, chilled
  • 2/3       cup unsweetened almond milk, chilled
  • 1/2       cup ice cubes
  • 1/2       small banana
  • 1          tablespoon peanut butter
  • 1          tablespoon ground flax seed
  • 2          teaspoons cacao powder
  1. In blender on high speed, blend grapes, almond milk, ice, banana, peanut butter, flax seed and cacao powder until smooth.

Nutritional information per serving: 350 calories; 8 g protein; 53 g carbohydrates; 14 g fat (36% calories from fat); 2.5 g saturated fat (6% calories from saturated fat); 0 mg cholesterol; 220 mg sodium; 7 g fiber.

Quinoa, Cauliflower and Grape Salad

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

  • 1          cup white quinoa
  • 1          small head cauliflower, trimmed and cut into small florets
  • 1 1/4    cups red California grapes, halved
  • 3          scallions, trimmed and thinly sliced
  • 2          ripe avocados, diced 1/3 inch

Dressing:

  • 2          tablespoons white wine vinegar
  • 1          tablespoon lime juice
  • 1          tablespoon honey
  • 1/2       teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2       teaspoon dried oregano, crumbled
  • 1/2       teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1/4       cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  1. Cook quinoa according to package directions and drain on two layers of paper towels. Transfer to mixing bowl. Add cauliflower, grapes, scallions and avocado pieces.
  2. To make dressing: In small bowl, whisk vinegar, lime juice, honey, cumin, oregano and salt until blended. Gradually whisk in oil. Drizzle dressing over quinoa mixture and toss gently. Season with pepper, to taste.

Nutritional information per serving: 260 calories; 5 g protein; 27 g carbo hydrates; 16 g fat (55% calories from fat); 2 g saturated fat (7% calories from saturated fat); 0 mg cholesterol; 170 mg sodium; 6 g fiber.

Source: California Table Grape Commission

Appetizers & Sides 26 May 2021

Add Mediterranean Flair to Your Dinner Table

(Family Features) During the past year, many people have missed the opportunity to travel and experience the sights, sounds and tastes of the world, but it’s easy to explore other cultures and cuisines by experimenting in the kitchen.

If you’re looking to transport your taste buds to the shores of Spain or the beaches of Greece, one of the best places to start is with the Mediterranean Diet. Renowned chef Geoffrey Zakarian recommends these tips to help home cooks elevate their dishes and easily incorporate the popular diet into everyday cooking.

Reach for Pantry Staples. There’s no single definition of the Mediterranean Diet, but it’s high in vegetables, fruits, whole grains, nuts, seeds, olive oil and seafood. By keeping your pantry stocked with canned versions of ingredients like beans and fish you can easily add them to your favorite dishes. Yellowfin Tuna Pasta Salad with Arugula Pesto and Dates, and Tuna Aioli Dip with Balsamic Drizzle are flavorful ways to bring Mediterranean flair to your dinner table.

Add Seafood. Eating more seafood is one of the leading principles of the Mediterranean Diet. Tuna salad is one tried-and-true dish that can help incorporate fish into your menu. To make it more nutritious, opt for tuna that’s packed in extra-virgin olive oil, so you don’t have to add much mayo to the base. For example, Genova Premium Tuna provides a tasteful addition to recipes and is high in protein, a great source of omega-3s and has a uniquely rich and savory flavor that offers a taste of the Mediterranean in every bite.

Visit GenovaSeafood.com for more recipe inspiration.

 

Tuna Aioli Dip with Balsamic Drizzle

Prep time: 15-20 minutes
Cook time: 10-15 minutes
Servings: 4

  • 6          ounces Genova Albacore Tuna in Olive Oil
  • 1/4       cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1          dried bay leaf
  • 1          sprig fresh rosemary
  • 1⁄3       cup mayonnaise
  • 2          tablespoons capers, drained
  • 2          anchovies
  • 1/2       lemon, juice only (about 1 1/2 tablespoons)
  • raw vegetables, such as carrots, celery, cucumber spears, endive leaves, sliced fennel and bell pepper strips, for dipping
  1. Drain tuna, reserving 2 tablespoons oil.
  2. In small saucepan, combine balsamic vinegar, bay leaf and rosemary sprig. Bring to boil and reduce until syrupy, about 1 tablespoon. Let cool slightly; discard bay leaf and rosemary sprig.
  3. In blender or food processor, process tuna and reserved oil, mayonnaise, capers, anchovies and lemon juice to make smooth dip. Transfer to flat serving bowl. Drizzle with balsamic syrup. Serve with raw vegetables.

 

Yellowfin Tuna Pasta Salad with Arugula Pesto and Dates 

Prep time: 20-30 minutes
Cook time: 20-25 minutes
Servings: 4

  • 2          cans (5 ounces each) Genova Yellowfin Tuna in Olive Oil, drained
  • 1/2       cup pine nuts
  • 4          cups arugula
  • 1          garlic clove 
  • 2          tablespoons butter (optional)
  • 1          cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano, plus additional for garnish (optional)
  • 2          lemons, zest only (optional)
  • 1/2       teaspoon kosher salt 
  • 1/2       teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 3/4       cup extra-virgin olive oil 
  • 8          ounces whole-wheat orecchiette 
  • 1/2       cup jarred sun-dried tomatoes in oil, chopped
  • 1/2       cup dates, pitted and quartered 
  • 1/4       cup kalamata olives, pitted and chopped 
  • 1/4       cup dill, chopped (optional)
  • 1/4       cup parsley, chopped (optional)
  1. Preheat oven to 325 F.
  2. On a sheet tray, toast pine nuts 8-12 minutes, or until golden. Set aside to cool.
  3. Bring large pot of salted water to boil. Prepare ice water bath by filling large bowl with cold water and ice. Stir arugula into boiling water and cook until bright green and tender, about 30 seconds. Drain arugula, immediately shock in ice water and set aside to fully drain; cover with towel. 
  4. In blender or food processor, add arugula; garlic; pine nuts; butter, if desired; Parmigiano-Reggiano; lemon zest, if desired; salt; and pepper. Puree on high, incorporating olive oil to desired thickness. 
  5. Place pesto in bowl and cover tightly to avoid discoloring.
  6. Bring large pot of salted water to boil.
  7. Add pasta and return to boil, stirring occasionally. Taste pasta for doneness 2 minutes earlier than package instructions. Once cooked, drain and transfer to large bowl. Do not rinse. 
  8. Add pesto gently until evenly distributed. Fold in tuna, sun-dried tomatoes, dates and olives.
  9. Divide between shallow bowls and finish with additional Parmigiano-Reggiano, dill and parsley, if desired.

Source: Genova Tuna

Meal Ideas 04 May 2021

Power Up Athletic Performance with Real Milk-Inspired Dishes

(Family Features) From little ones learning the game to professional athletes pushing sports to new levels, nutrition impacts the ability to re-energize, stay hydrated and reach peak performance. Now, new data shows that one naturally nutrient-rich beverage provides more benefits than previously thought: dairy milk.

For years, real milk has been recognized as a powerhouse beverage that delivers nine essential nutrients, including calcium, protein and vitamin D. However, updated nutrient daily values for nutrition labeling and more robust government nutrition databases have provided data that shows real milk delivers 13 essential nutrients, making it a good or excellent source of four more vital nutrients: potassium, zinc, selenium and iodine. These nutrients help build strong bones, maintain a healthy immune system and maintain your central nervous system, all of which directly impact athletic performance.

“As a kid, you thought of dairy milk as the drink that helped you grow and have strong bones,” said Briana Butler, MCN, RDN, LD, a performance and sports dietitian who advises athletes. “As you get older and start paying more attention to drinks’ attributes, you realize that truth applies to adults and athletes as well. Real milk is a trustworthy and nutrient-rich way to repair, rehydrate and replenish muscles and bodies. It is truly an undeniable favorite of mine to fuel performance.”

As the “original sports drink,” real milk has fueled athletes for centuries and offers a natural nutrient combination not found in formulated sports drinks. It provides benefits for fitness enthusiasts of all ages including building lean muscle, maintaining strong bones and supporting a healthy immune system.

With 13 nutrients, real milk isn’t just the ultimate training fuel, it also makes your favorite recipes more tasty and nutritious. Dishes such as Zucchini Oatmeal Muffins are made in just 15 minutes and are a quick and nutritious snack that can be enjoyed on the go, crumbled over yogurt or paired with eggs for a morning power-up. You can also try Rattle Snake Pasta, a better-for-you version of a family favorite that combines rotisserie chicken, peppers and linguine.

Visit gonnaneedmilk.com for more information on real milk’s nutrition and for milk-inspired meals.

Rattle Snake Pasta

Recipe courtesy of registered dietitian Bri Butler and Power Portions
Total time: 15 minutes
Servings: 6

  • 1/4       cup buttery spread
  • 2          tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 3/4       cup dairy milk (2% recommended)
  • 1/2       cup vegetable broth
  • 1          tablespoon vegetable base
  • 1/2       cup Parmesan cheese, shredded
  • salt, to taste (optional)
  • pepper, to taste (optional)
  • 1/4       cup pickled jalapeno slices
  • 3          tablespoons minced garlic
  • 10        ounces cooked rotisserie chicken, shredded
  • 1          green bell pepper, sliced
  • 1          red bell pepper, sliced
  • 1          handful fresh cilantro, minced
  • 1          pound whole-wheat linguini, cooked
  1. In medium pot, melt buttery spread then add flour; mix well. Slowly add dairy milk and vegetable broth, stirring well.
  2. Add vegetable broth and Parmesan cheese; heat slowly until thickened. Add salt and pepper, to taste, if desired.
  3. Add jalapenos, garlic, bell peppers and roasted chicken; heat thoroughly.
  4. Serve over cooked linguini.

Zucchini Oatmeal Muffins

Recipe courtesy of registered dietitian Bri Butler and Power Portions
Total time: 15 minutes
Servings: 12

  • 1          zucchini
  • 1 1/2    cups dairy milk (2% recommended)
  • 3          bananas
  • 6          pieces pitted Deglet Noor dates
  • 1          teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2          tablespoons safflower oil
  • 2 1/2    cups old-fashioned oats
  • 1 1/2    teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 1/2    teaspoons salt
  • 1          teaspoon ground cinnamon
  1. Preheat oven to 350 F.
  2. Grate zucchini. Using kitchen towel or cheesecloth, wring as much water as possible. Set aside.
  3. In blender, blend dairy milk, banana, dates, vanilla and oil until smooth. Set aside.
  4. In large bowl, combine oats, baking powder, salt and cinnamon.
  5. Combine milk mixture, zucchini and oat mixture until well combined. Pour into coated 12-muffin pan.
  6. Cook 30 minutes, or until golden brown.
  7. Tips: Pair muffin (counts as one grain) with eggs and unsweetened nut butter for a balanced meal. Crumble over plain yogurt for parfait twist.

 

Photos courtesy of Getty Images

Source: MilkPEP

Dessert 01 June 2020

Good-for-You Sweet Treats

(Family Features) While eating healthy and enjoying sweets seldom go hand-in-hand, choosing the right combination of nutritious ingredients can allow for guilt-free indulgences that shirks conventional dieting wisdom. In fact, some eating plans take it a step further by actually encouraging eating big in the evening when you’re naturally hungriest to help achieve your weight loss 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 No Bake Salted Caramel Bars, Cherry Garcia Ice Cream and Fruit Tarts can satisfy that sweet tooth before heading to bed.

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

 

Fruit Tarts

Recipe courtesy of “Always Eat After 7 PM”
Prep time: 40 minutes
Cook time: 1 hour, 20 minutes
Servings: 20

Custard:

  • 8          egg yolks
  • 1          cup raw honey
  • 1          tablespoon coconut flour
  • 3          cans (13 2/3 ounces each) full-fat coconut milk
  • 1          teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4       teaspoon lemon zest

Sugar Cookie Crust:

  • 1/2       cup coconut oil, plus additional for greasing
  • 1/2       cup palm shortening
  • 1          cup coconut palm sugar
  • 1          teaspoon baking soda
  • 1          teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 1/4       teaspoon salt
  • 3          egg yolks
  • 1⁄2       teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1          cup blanched almond flour
  • 1⁄4       cup coconut flour
  • 2          tablespoons arrowroot starch

Toppings:

  • 2          kiwis, peeled and sliced
  • 1          mango, peeled, pitted and sliced into 1/2-inch strips
  • 1/2       cup raspberries
  • 1/2       cup blackberries
  • 1/2       cup blueberries
  • 1/2       cup red grapes
  • 1          cup strawberries, thinly sliced
  • fresh mint leaves, for garnish
  1. To make custard: In saucepan, whisk egg yolks and honey until smooth. Mix in coconut flour.
  2. In medium saucepan over medium heat, combine coconut milk, vanilla extract and lemon zest; bring to boil then remove from heat.
  3. Pour hot milk mixture into egg yolk mixture, stirring while pouring. Over low heat, simmer 5 minutes, stirring constantly.
  4. Remove from heat and let cool, continuing to stir occasionally. Once cooled to room temperature, pour into individual custard cups. Chill in refrigerator 30 minutes, or until serving.
  5. To make crust: Heat oven to 350° F. Line bottom of pie pan with parchment paper and grease with coconut oil.
  6. In large mixing bowl using electric mixer on high, beat coconut oil and palm shortening 30 seconds. Add coconut palm sugar, baking soda, cream of tartar and salt; beat until combined, scraping sides of bowl occasionally. Beat in egg yolks and vanilla until combined. Beat in almond flour, coconut flour and starch. Chill dough in refrigerator 15 minutes.
  7. Press chilled cookie dough into bottom of pie pan and 2 inches up sides. Bake 12 minutes, or until crust is golden and browned on top and edges. Remove from oven and cool 10 minutes. Place cooled crust in refrigerator 30 minutes or overnight before assembling.
  8. To assemble fruit tarts: Spread custard over chilled crust. Decorate top in circular pattern with kiwis, mango strips, raspberries, blackberries, blueberries, grapes and strawberries.
  9. Before serving, chill at least 30 minutes or freeze 1 hour to help keep toppings in place.
  10. Remove from freezer and set out at room temperature 20 minutes before slicing. Garnish with mint leaves.

Nutritional information per serving: 192 calories; 14 g fat; 16 g carbohydrates; 61 mg sodium; 2 g fiber; 1 g protein; 9 g sugar.

Cherry Garcia Ice Cream

Recipe courtesy of “Always Eat After 7 PM”
Prep time: 10 minutes
Servings: 4

  • 1/4       cup fresh Bing cherries, pitted and halved
  • 1/4       cup stevia-sweetened dark chocolate bar, chopped
  • 3          overripe frozen bananas, peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1/4       cup unsweetened coconut milk
  • 1 pinch sea salt
  1. Chill cherries and dark chocolate.
  2. In food processor, pulse frozen bananas, milk and salt until smooth, creamy consistency of soft serve is achieved. Stir in cherries and chocolate. Serve immediately or place in freezer-safe container and freeze until serving.

Nutritional information per serving: 165 calories; 7 g fat; 27 g carbohydrates; 134 mg sodium; 6 g fiber; 2 protein; 12 g sugar.

No Bake Salted Caramel Bars

Recipe courtesy of “Always Eat After 7 PM”
Prep time: 30 minutes
Cook time: 40 minutes
Servings: 30

Cookie Layer:

  • 2 1/2    cups raw pecans
  • 8          pitted dates, soaked in hot water 10 minutes then drained
  • 2          tablespoons blanched almond flour
  • 1          teaspoon coconut flour
  • 1/4       teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/4       cup granular zero-calorie, natural sweetener
  • 3          tablespoons coconut oil, melted

Caramel Layer:

  • 1/2       cup coconut palm sugar
  • 1/2       cup granular zero-calorie, natural sweetener
  • 2          tablespoons full-fat coconut milk
  • 2          tablespoons coconut oil
  • 1          pinch sea salt
  • 1          tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2       teaspoon baking soda

Chocolate Layer:

  • 2          cups stevia-sweetened chocolate chips
  • 2          tablespoons coconut oil
  • coconut oil
  • 1/3       cup dry roasted macadamia nuts, chopped
  • coarse sea salt
  1. To make cookie layer: Place large skillet over medium heat. Spread pecans over skillet and toast, stirring often, 8-10 minutes until golden. Remove from heat.
  2. Transfer toasted pecans to food processor and pulse until fine. Add dates, almond flour, coconut flour, sea salt, sweetener and coconut oil; pulse until dough forms.
  3. To make caramel layer: In skillet over medium heat, combine coconut palm sugar, sweetener, coconut milk, coconut oil, sea salt and vanilla extract; bring to boil. Once boiling, decrease heat to low and cook 5 minutes, stirring often.
  4. Remove skillet from heat; whisk in baking soda. Return pan to low heat and cook 2 minutes, stirring often.
  5. Remove caramel from heat and let cool and thicken 5 minutes.
  6. To make chocolate layer: In double boiler, melt chocolate chips and coconut oil. Stir until mixture is smooth then remove from heat.
  7. To assemble salted caramel bars: Line bottom and sides of 9-by-9-inch baking pan with parchment paper, leaving some hanging over sides. Lightly rub parchment paper with coconut oil.
  8. Press cookie dough into bottom of pan to create even layer. Place in freezer 5 minutes to harden.
  9. Pour caramel over cookie layer and spread to coat evenly. Place in freezer 5 minutes. Pour chocolate over caramel and spread to cover evenly. Sprinkle with macadamia nuts and coarse salt. Place in freezer 10 minutes until chocolate sets.
  10. Use overhanging parchment paper to ease set mixture out of pan. Transfer to cutting board and slice into bite-size bars.

Nutritional information per serving: 180 calories; 15 g fat; 15 g carbohydrates; 56 mg sodium; 4 g fiber; 2 g protein; 4 g sugar.

Source: Promote A Book

Breakfast & Brunch 28 April 2020

Make-Ahead Breakfasts for Easier Mornings

(Family Features) If you’re juggling a new set of responsibilities right now, you’re not alone. Those busy mornings may still pose challenges even if your commute no longer exists.

Making breakfast in advance can give you a few extra minutes to move your body, center your mind or simply hit the snooze button one more time and still put a delicious, nutritious breakfast on the table. Aim to use ingredients with a mix of protein, fiber and good fats to keep you full and energized for whatever the day has in store. 

Take morning meal prep off your plate for days at a time by making a batch of No-Bake Walnut, Cocoa and Cherry Bars or Savory Walnut Egg Cups, which can be made with mostly pantry staples or frozen ingredients to help limit trips to the grocery store.

Find more make-ahead recipes for any meal of the day at walnuts.org/meal-prep. 

Savory Walnut Egg Cups

Total time: 1 hour, 15 minutes
Servings: 12

  • Nonstick cooking spray
  • 1 1/2    cups old-fashioned oats
  • 3/4       cup chopped walnuts
  • 1/4       cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/4       teaspoon salt
  • 2          tablespoons cold water
  • 9          large eggs
  • 1/2       teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1          teaspoon dried oregano leaves
  • 1          tablespoon stone ground Dijon mustard
  • 1          cup baby spinach, coarsely chopped
  • 1          small red bell pepper, diced
  • 3/4       cup extra sharp shredded cheddar cheese
  1. Heat oven to 350° F and generously spray 12-cup muffin pan with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. In bowl of food processor, pulse oats until fine and flour-like. Add walnuts and pulse until blended with oat flour. Pulse in olive oil, salt and water until mixture comes together.
  3. Spoon walnut-oat crust mixture evenly (about 1 1/4 tablespoons each) into each muffin cup and press into bottom and partially up sides. Bake 25 minutes until crust begins to brown. Cool on wire rack 10 minutes.
  4. In large bowl, whisk eggs, garlic powder, oregano and mustard until well combined. Stir in spinach, bell pepper and cheese.
  5. Fill each muffin cup evenly with egg-veggie mixture and bake 20 minutes, or until eggs are set. Cool slightly on wire rack before removing egg cups by carefully inserting sharp knife between crust and muffin pan.

No-Bake Walnut, Cocoa and Cherry Bars

Total time:15 minutes
Servings: 9

  • 1/2       cup old-fashioned oats
  • 1          cup (about 12) pitted medjool dates
  • 1/2       cup shelled walnuts
  • 1/2       cup unsweetened dried cherries
  • 2          tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2       teaspoon salt
  1. In large food processor bowl, combine oats, dates, walnuts, cherries, cocoa powder and salt. Process 1-2 minutes, or until mixture resembles crumbly dough.
  2. Turn mixture onto wax paper and shape evenly into 1/2-inch thick rectangle.
  3. Chill at least 1 hour and cut into nine bars.

Source:  California Walnuts

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