recipes

Videos 16 February 2024

Taco Mac and Cheese

(Culinary.net) Macaroni and cheese is a beloved comfort food that’s easy to make during a busy week. With just a few extra ingredients and steps, you can turn boxed mac and cheese into a filling dinner.

To make this Taco Mac and Cheese, simply prepare your favorite boxed mac and cheese according to the package instructions and stir fry the meat and vegetables together. (Hint: You can even chop vegetables the night before to make cooking the next day even easier.) Then add taco seasoning and combine for a better-for-you take on a classic dish.

Visit Culinary.net to find more quick and simple recipes.

Watch video to see how to make this recipe!

Taco Mac and Cheese

  • 1          box macaroni and cheese
  • 1/4       cup milk
  • 4          tablespoons butter
  • 1          pound ground turkey
  • 1          red bell pepper, diced
  • 1          yellow bell pepper, diced
  • 1          orange bell pepper, diced
  • 1          onion, diced
  • 2          teaspoons taco seasoning
  1. Prepare boxed mac and cheese with milk and butter according to package instructions.
  2. In skillet, brown ground turkey over medium heat. Add bell peppers and onion. Add taco seasoning.
  3. Stir turkey mixture with mac and cheese to combine.

Source: Culinary.net

Meal Ideas 22 January 2024

Sweet Family Favorites to Celebrate Lent

(Family Features) If you’re in search of a meatless meal – whether you’re observing Lent or simply adhering to your own dietary restrictions – remember you don’t have to sacrifice on taste. Enjoying a delicious dish without the meat can be an easy feat with just a few everyday ingredients.

Start with the craveable texture and crunch of Envy Apples – a leading apple variety – that provide balanced sweetness with flesh that remains white longer, even after cutting. While they’re often best served fresh or paired with cheese boards, sandwiches or mocktails, their sweetness also helps play up meatless favorites like Seared Salmon with Apple Slaw.

The flaky baked fish is complemented perfectly by Asian-style barbecue sauce and fresh herbs then paired with a sweet homemade apple slaw for a classic Lenten dish with a tangy twist. For a family meal that doubles down on freshness, try pairing with roasted broccolini or a light salad.

Firing up the grill isn’t only for beef, chicken and pork – you can prepare a tasty recipe over an open flame while skipping the meat with Grilled Apple Portobello Burgers. Simply substitute beef with thick portobello mushrooms and naturally white Envy Apple slices that maintain their beauty while cooking so your finished “burgers” look as delicious as they taste.

These plant-forward meals featuring the uplifting aroma and flavor of apples offer an invitation to savor small moments around the table and can help you celebrate Lent and beyond with an ultimate apple experience that introduces your loved ones to new ways to rethink weekly favorites.

Find more meatless meal inspiration by visiting EnvyApple.com.

Seared Salmon with Apple Slaw

  • 4 portions boneless salmon
  • 4 tablespoons Asian-style barbecue sauce
  • 2 Envy Apples, cored and sliced into matchsticks or julienned
  • 1 cup sliced or shredded red cabbage
  • 1 cup sliced or shredded white cabbage
  • 1 celery stick, finely sliced
  • 1/2 red onion, finely sliced
  • 1/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh herbs such as dill, parsley or cilantro
  • 1 lime, juice and zest only
  • 1 tablespoon toasted white sesame seeds, plus additional for garnish
  • 1 teaspoon black sesame seeds, plus additional for garnish
  1. Preheat oven to 375 F using grill or broil setting and line baking tray with cooking paper.
  2. Arrange salmon portions on paper and spread barbecue sauce over each portion.
  3. Bake 5-8 minutes, depending on thickness and size, or until just cooked in center and caramelized on top.
  4. In bowl, combine sliced apple sticks, cabbage, celery and red onion slices; toss lightly.
  5. In separate bowl, whisk mayonnaise, herbs, lime juice and lime zest.
  6. Fold dressing and sesame seeds into slaw and toss together.
  7. Divide apple slaw between serving plates and top with glazed salmon. Sprinkle with extra sesame seeds.

Grilled Apple Portobello “Burgers”

  • 1 Envy Apple
  • 2 portobello mushrooms
  • 1/4 cup olive oil, divided
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup herbed goat cheese
  • 2 brioche buns
  • 2 parge pieces butter lettuce
  • 2 tablespoons mayonnaise
  1. Heat grill to medium heat.
  2. Slice apples horizontally into thick round wedges and remove seeds using fork.
  3. Remove portobello stems.
  4. In small bowl, combine 1/8 cup olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, oregano and salt.
  5. Using basting brush, coat portobellos on both sides with olive oil mixture. Grill stem sides down 2 minutes then flip. Add goat cheese to portobellos and grill 2-3 minutes until cheese is melted. Remove from grill.
  6. Use remaining olive oil to coat apple rounds. Grill apple rounds 1-2 minutes per side to lightly char.
  7. Serve portobellos with apple rounds on brioche buns with lettuce and mayonnaise.

Source: Envy Apples

Ethnic 02 January 2024

Give Comfort Food Classics an Authentic Mexican Twist

(Family Features) If winter evenings have you stuck in a dinner rut, heat up the kitchen with family favorites everyone can look forward to. Shaking off the chill can start with a cozy blanket and comforting food that warms you from the inside out.

Soup is a wintertime staple thanks to its simplicity, and you can put a delicious spin on your next winter warmup with Mexican-inspired ingredients. Giving soup night a twist starts with Cacique Foods, one of the country’s top authentic Mexican food brands, that invites friends and family to share real moments while savoring authentic flavors.

This Smoky Chorizo and Chicken Pozole relies on the bold, hearty, spicy taste of Cacique’s Pork Chorizo combined with handcrafted Homestyle Salsa. Queso Fresco’s crumbly, creamy texture and milky, fresh flavor adds the perfect finishing touch, making this soup a perfect way to warm up weeknights with just the right amount of heat.

For a flavorful side that complements a variety of main courses while adding Mexican flair, consider Mexican Loaded Mashed Potatoes. This recipe is a familiar favorite with the unique twist of bacon and Pork Chorizo for a meat-infused recipe that will become a menu mainstay.

Plus, for an extra creamy texture, it calls for Cacique Crema Mexicana – an everyday table cream with a neutral, fresh-tasting flavor ideal for balancing out spice – and Oaxaca, a semisoft cheese with a mellow, buttery flavor.

Find more comforting recipes at caciquefoods.com.

Smoky Chorizo and Chicken Pozole

Prep time: 5 minutes
Cook time: 30 minutes
Servings: 6-8

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large white or yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus additional, to taste (optional)
  • 1 package (9 ounces) Cacique Pork Chorizo
  • 2 teaspoons smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon dried Mexican oregano
  • 1 container (16 ounces) Cacique Medium Homestyle Salsa
  • 1quart chicken stock
  • 2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs or breasts, trimmed of excess fat and diced
  • 1 can (25 ounces) white hominy, drained and rinsed
  • 1 lime, cut into wedges
  • 3/4 cup crumbled Cacique Ranchero Queso Fresco
  • 1/2 cup chopped cilantro
  1. In large, heavy pot over medium heat, heat oil. Reserve 1/4 cup onion for garnish; add remaining onion to pot and season with salt. Saute until translucent, about 5 minutes.
  2. Increase heat to medium-high; add pork chorizo and break it apart with spoon. Cook chorizo undisturbed until deeply browned and cooked through, 3-5 minutes. Add smoked paprika and oregano; cook 30 seconds, or until fragrant.
  3. Pour in salsa and scrape up browned bits from bottom of pan. Bring to simmer 1-2 minutes, allowing it to thicken slightly then add stock and bring to simmer.
  4. Stir in diced chicken and hominy. Decrease heat to medium and cook 8-10 minutes until chicken is cooked through. Taste and season with more salt, if necessary. Remove from heat.
  5. Serve bowls of pozole with reserved onion, lime wedges, crumbled queso fresco and chopped cilantro.

Mexican Loaded Mashed Potatoes

Prep time: 35 minutes
Cook time: 40 minutes
Servings: 10

  • 3 pounds russet potatoes (about 9 medium potatoes), peeled and cubed
  • water
  • 6 bacon strips, chopped
  • 1 package Cacique Pork Chorizo
  • 12 ounces Cacique Crema Mexicana
  • 1/2 cup butter, cubed
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 cup Cacique Oaxaca or Queso Quesadilla, shredded
  • 1/2 cup Cacique Crema Mexicana Agria, for topping (optional)
  • 3 green onions, chopped
  1. In Dutch over, add potatoes and cover with water. Bring to boil. Reduce heat; cook, uncovered, 10-15 minutes, or until tender.
  2. In skillet over medium heat, cook bacon until crisp. Drain on paper towels, chop into small pieces and set aside. Remove bacon grease from skillet and cook chorizo over medium-high heat, 6-8 minutes.
  3. Drain potatoes; add to pan. Mash potatoes, gradually adding crema Mexicana, butter, onion powder, salt, garlic powder and pepper. Transfer to greased 13-by-9-inch baking dish; sprinkle with cheese, chorizo and bacon. Refrigerate, covered, up to 1 day.
  4. Preheat oven to 350 F. Remove potatoes from refrigerator and let stand while oven heats. Bake, covered, about 30 minutes. Uncover; bake 10 minutes, or until heated through.
  5. Drizzle with crema Mexicana agria and chopped green onions.

 Source: Cacique

Breakfast & Brunch 02 November 2023

A Delicious Way to Support Your Immune System

(Family Features) Bolstering your immune system during winter, when coughs and colds seem to take control, is a must for the entire family. Supporting your wellness can start in a simple place – with the foods you eat and drink.

Consider an easy choice for any season like Florida Orange Juice, which can help you and your loved ones get the vitamins and minerals you need all winter long. With 100% of the daily recommended value of vitamin C in every 8-ounce serving along with key nutrients like potassium and magnesium, there’s a reason it’s referred to as the “Original Wellness Drink.”

With no added sugar or artificial flavor, it provides the benefits you need without the additives you don’t. It contains natural sugar from the whole fruit for a delicious solution that’s one of nature’s nutrient-rich foods with vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients. Plus, it’s easy to use as a nutritional ingredient in wintertime favorites like this comforting Orange Juice and Coconut Chickpea Soup or to start your day strong with a Superfruit Breakfast Smoothie.

Paired with a healthy lifestyle, 8 ounces of 100% orange juice may help support a healthy immune system as an excellent source of vitamin C and a good source of vitamin D in fortified juices. Vitamin C is commonly associated with helping maintain and strengthen healthy immune systems by protecting cells and promoting the production and function of immune cells. Meanwhile, vitamin D also plays an important role in regulating immune response by helping immune cells fight off bacteria and viruses.

“Safeguarding your health against the spread of illness is important year-round, especially during colder months when reports of cold and flu increase,” said Dr. Rosa Walsh, director of scientific research at the Florida Department of Citrus. “A key step in supporting your immune system is maintaining a well-balanced diet that is high in essential nutrients. Incorporating an 8-ounce glass of 100% orange juice can help you meet the recommended daily value of vitamin C and support your hydration.”

Beneficial plant compounds, like those in Florida Orange Juice, along with flavonoids and colorful carotenoids work to support the immune system by fighting inflammation and helping cells communicate, which can help strengthen immune responses when encountering infections.

Additionally, 100% orange juice is a source of phytonutrients like hesperidin, which has been shown in clinical studies to have antioxidant-like properties, heart health benefits and may help reduce inflammation. Hesperidin has also been linked with benefits related to cognitive function, immune system function and bone health.

To find more information and immunity-boosting winter recipes, visit FloridaJuice.com.

Orange Juice and Coconut Chickpea Soup

Servings: 8

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 cup diced yellow onion
  • 1 red bell pepper, diced
  • 1 1/2 cups diced carrots
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 3 cloves garlic, finely grated
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1 quart vegetable broth
  • 1 can (14 ounces) light coconut milk
  • 1 can (14 ounces) chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1/2 cup Florida Orange juice
  • chopped cilantro (optional)
  1. In medium saucepan over medium high, heat olive oil until it shimmers.
  2. Add onions, bell pepper, carrots and salt; cook until onions are translucent, 5-7 minutes.
  3. Add garlic and cardamom; cook 1-2 minutes, or until garlic is fragrant. Do not brown.
  4. Add vegetable broth, coconut milk and chickpeas; bring to simmer.
  5. Decrease heat to low and cook until carrots are tender, about 10 minutes.
  6. Add orange juice, remove from heat and stir. Taste and adjust seasoning as desired.
  7. Serve garnished with cilantro, if desired.

Superfruit Breakfast Smoothie

Servings: 2

  • 8 ounces Florida Orange Juice
  • 4 ounces dark sweet cherries
  • 2 ounces pomegranate juice
  1. In blender, puree orange juice, cherries and pomegranate juice then serve.

 

Meal Ideas 20 November 2023

Solve Winter Blues with Cozy Recipes

(Family Features) Cozying up with a bowl of warm deliciousness is a perfect way to ward off the chill of winter, and it’s made even better when shared with those you love. Turning to favorite chilis and soups with comforting ingredients and smoky spices can transport your family from snow and sleet to warmth and paradise.

Smoky German Potato, Sausage and Bacon Chili offers a reprieve from the cold with hearty flavor and family favorites seasoned with chili powder, cumin and cayenne pepper for classic taste with a twist. The thinly sliced potatoes and bacon of READ German Potato Salad in a sweet-piquant dressing provide a delicious new take on traditional chili.

A bit on the lighter side but equally satisfying, Tuscan 3 Bean Peasant Soup calls for shallots, diced tomatoes, spinach, cannellini beans, cooked small pasta and more for a true winter warmup. Served with toasted bread cubes, it’s sure to warm loved ones up from the inside out.

Its key ingredient is Aunt Nellie’s 3 Bean Salad, featuring premium green, wax and kidney beans in a light, sweet-tangy vinegar dressing. As a ready-to-eat solution, it can be served chilled, at room temperature or as part of comforting winter recipes.

Visit READSalads.com and AuntNellies.com to find more cozy cold-weather dishes.

Smoky German Potato, Sausage and Bacon Chili

Recipe courtesy of "Dad with a Pan" on behalf of READ
Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 40 minutes
Servings: 8

  • 4 strips thick bacon, cut into cubes
  • 1 pound smoked sausage, sliced into 1-inch segments
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 4 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon ground coriander
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 2 Fresno peppers, diced
  • 1 can (14 1/2 ounces) diced tomatoes, drained
  • 1 can READ German Potato Salad, drained
  • 1 cup beef broth
  • salt, to taste
  • pepper, to taste
  1. n large saucepan over medium heat, cook bacon until crispy. Remove and set aside, leaving about 2 tablespoons drippings in saucepan.
  2. Add smoked sausage and cook until browned.
  3. Once sausage is cooked, add diced onion and minced garlic, cooking until onion is translucent.
  4. Drain excess fat then stir in chili powder, coriander, cumin, cayenne pepper, oregano and Fresno peppers until well mixed.
  5. Add drained diced tomatoes, German potato salad and cooked bacon to saucepan.
  6. Add beef broth and stir to combine. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.
  7. Bring mixture to simmer and let cook about 30 minutes, stirring occasionally, until flavors are melded.

Substitution: Jalapenos can be used for Fresno peppers.

Tuscan 3 Bean Peasant Soup

Recipe courtesy of Sarah Meuser on behalf of Aunt Nellie's
Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 27 minutes
Servings: 8

  • 10 ounces day-old crusty bread, such as ciabatta, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus additional for drizzling (optional)
  • 2 medium shallots or 1 small yellow onion, peeled and chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
  • 1 can (15 1/2 ounces) cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 can (28 ounces) diced tomatoes
  • 3 cans (14 1/2 ounces each) low-sodium chicken broth (about 6 cups)
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup small pasta, such as ditalini, uncooked
  • 2 cups frozen cut leaf spinach or chopped fresh spinach
  • 2 jars (15 1/2 ounces each) Aunt Nellie's 3 Bean Salad, drained
  • 1 tablespoon lemon zest (optional)
  1. Preheat oven to 375 F. Place bread cubes in single layer on large baking pan. Bake until bread cubes are lightly browned, 8-12 minutes. Set aside.
  2. Heat large saucepan or Dutch oven over medium heat. Add 2 tablespoons oil; swirl to coat. Add shallots; cook 5 minutes, or until soft, stirring occasionally. Add garlic; cook 1 minute, or until fragrant. Add cannellini beans, tomatoes, broth and black pepper; bring to boil. Add pasta; cook 8 minutes, or according to package directions. Stir in spinach and bean salad. Simmer 5 minutes, or until heated through.
  3. Ladle soup evenly into bowls. Top with toasted bread cubes and lemon zest, if desired. Drizzle with additional olive oil, if desired.

Source: Seneca Foods

Videos 19 October 2023

Tex-Mex Sweetpotato Beef Skillet

(Family Features) For busy families, it’s hard to beat a one-skillet dish that cuts down on cleanup without sacrificing flavor. Especially during the hectic fall season when cool, crisp days call for comforting food, you can warm up the evening with a hot Tex-Mex meal that’s sure to occupy a permanent spot on the menu.

Start with a versatile comfort food staple like sweetpotatoes, which provide the body for this filling Tex-Mex Sweetpotato Beef Skillet. As a versatile veggie that’s easy to add to a variety of recipes for enhanced flavor and nutrition content, they can become a pantry must in your home for simple and elevated recipes alike. To maximize their already-lengthy shelf life (up to 4 weeks), simply store in a cool, dry, well-ventilated area away from heat sources – never in the refrigerator, which can cause “chill damage.”

Because they can be cooked and prepared in a skillet, baked, grilled, slow-cooked, microwaved, air-fried and more, they provide a crowd favorite that’s a breeze to use in the kitchen. In this delicious dish, they’re combined with peppers, onions, ground beef, broth, tomatoes, corn, Southwest seasoning and more to keep chilly days at bay.

Consider this fun fact to share with your loved ones at the dinner table: The one-word spelling of “sweetpotato” was officially adopted by the National Sweetpotato Collaborators in 1989 to avoid confusion with equally unique and distinctive potatoes, which are also grown and marketed commercially in the United States.

Find more comfort food favorites by visiting ncsweetpotatoes.com.

Watch video to see how to make this recipe!


Tex-Mex Sweetpotato Beef Skillet

Recipe courtesy of Meredith Bernard of “This Farm Wife” on behalf of the North Carolina Sweetpotato Commission

Servings: 6

  • 2          medium sweetpotatoes
  • 3          bell peppers (combination of red, yellow and orange)
  • 1          small onion
  • 2          tablespoons olive oil or butter, divided
  • 2          garlic cloves, minced
  • 1          pound lean ground beef
  • 1/2       cup beef broth
  • 1          can diced tomatoes
  • 8          ounces tomato sauce
  • 1          can Mexi-corn or Southwest corn
  • 1          tablespoon Southwest seasoning
  • salt, to taste
  • pepper, to taste
  1. Rinse and scrub sweetpotatoes to clean. Chop into 1/2-inch cubes. Dice bell pepper and onion. Set aside.
  2. In skillet over medium heat, heat 1 tablespoon oil or butter.
  3. Add garlic and saute until fragrant, being careful not to burn.
  4. Add ground beef, breaking apart and stirring until cooked through, 5-7 minutes. Remove garlic and beef to covered bowl or plate; set aside.
  5. In same skillet, add remaining oil or butter. Saute peppers, onion and sweetpotatoes until slightly tender.
  6. Pour in broth, diced tomatoes and tomato sauce; cover and simmer 12-15 minutes.
  7. Stir in cooked beef and corn. Cook until liquid reduces and mixture thickens slightly. Add seasoning and salt and pepper, to taste.

Source: North Carolina Sweetpotato Commission

Meal Ideas 25 September 2023

Quick, Easy Recipes to Add to Your Dinner Rotation: Simple, nutritious meals to make more time for family

(Family Features) Making time for meals together can have a positive impact on the well-being of families, including children and adolescents. In fact, regular meals at home can help reduce stress and boost self-esteem, according to research published in “Canadian Family Physician.”

Mealtime conversations are also a perfect opportunity to connect with your loved ones. A study published in “New Directions for Child and Adolescent Development” showed these conversations help improve children’s vocabularies more than being read aloud to.

Making time for meals together shouldn’t require spending all night in the kitchen, however. A simple-to-prepare ingredient like eggs can help you spend less time cooking and more time with family.

For example, these heart-healthy recipes for Poached Egg Tostadas with Avocado-Tomatillo Salsa, Sweet Potato Hash with Eggs and Poblano Frittata from the Healthy for Good Eat Smart initiative, nationally supported by Eggland’s Best, are ready in 15 minutes or less. They include a wide variety of vegetables, fruit, whole grains and healthy protein sources, which are recommended by the American Heart Association to help prevent heart disease and stroke.

To find more tips for family mealtimes and recipe inspiration, visit heart.org/eatsmart.

Poached Egg Tostadas with Avocado-Tomatillo Salsa

Servings: 4 (1 egg and 1/2 cup salsa per serving)

  • Nonstick cooking spray
  • 4          corn tortillas (6 inches each)
  • 4          cups water
  • 1          tablespoon white vinegar
  • 4          large eggs

Salsa:

  • 1          medium avocado, diced
  • 1          medium Anaheim or poblano pepper, seeds and ribs discarded, diced
  • 1          medium tomatillo, papery husk discarded, washed and diced
  • 1/2       medium tomato, diced
  • 1/4       cup diced red onion
  • 1/4       cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 2          tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 1          medium garlic clove, minced
  • 1/8       teaspoon salt
  1. Preheat oven to 400 F. Line baking sheet with aluminum foil. Lightly spray foil with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. Arrange tortillas in single layer on foil. Lightly spray tortillas with nonstick cooking spray. Using fork, pierce tortillas to prevent from filling with air. Bake 5-6 minutes on each side, or until golden brown. Transfer to serving plates.
  3. In large skillet over high heat, bring water and vinegar to boil.
  4. Once water is boiling, reduce heat and simmer. Break egg into cup then carefully slip egg into simmering water. Repeat with remaining eggs, avoiding eggs touching in water. Simmer 3-5 minutes, or until egg whites are completely set and yolks are beginning to set but aren’t hard. Using slotted spoon, drain eggs. Place each egg on tostada.
  5. To make salsa: In medium bowl, gently stir together avocado, pepper, tomatillo, tomato, red onion, cilantro, lime juice, garlic and salt. Serve with tostadas.

Nutritional information per serving: 185 calories; 11 g total fat; 2.5 g saturated fat; 3 g polyunsaturated fat; 5 g monounsaturated fat; 186 mg cholesterol; 169 mg sodium; 15 g carbohydrates; 3 g fiber; 2 g total sugars; 9 g protein.

Poblano Frittata

Servings: 4 (2 wedges per serving)

  • 4          large eggs
  • 1/4       cup fat-free milk
  • 2          tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1          teaspoon olive oil
  • 2          medium poblano peppers, seeds and ribs discarded, chopped
  • 2          cups frozen whole-kernel corn, thawed
  • 2          medium green onions, chopped
  • 1/4       cup finely shredded Cotija cheese or crumbled queso fresco
  • 1          medium tomato, chopped
  • 1/4       cup fat-free sour cream
  1. In medium bowl, whisk eggs, milk and cilantro.
  2. In medium skillet over medium heat, heat oil, swirling to coat bottom of skillet. Cook poblano peppers 3 minutes, or until browning on edges, stirring frequently.
  3. Stir in corn and green onion. Reduce heat to medium-low and carefully pour in egg mixture. Cook, covered, 10 minutes, or until mixture is just set on edges and still soft in center. Avoid overcooking. Remove from heat.
  4. Sprinkle with cheese. Cut into eight wedges. Place two wedges on each plate. Top with tomatoes and sour cream.

Nutritional information per serving: 244 calories; 8.5 g total fat; 2.5 g saturated fat; 1.5 g polyunsaturated fat; 3 g monounsaturated fat; 192 mg cholesterol; 177 mg sodium; 27 g carbohydrates; 4 g fiber; 8 g total sugars; 13 g protein.

Sweet Potato Hash with Eggs

Servings: 4 (1 cup per serving)

  • 2          teaspoons canola or corn oil
  • 1/2       medium onion, chopped
  • 4          medium sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 1/2       medium red or green bell pepper, chopped
  • 2/3       cup fat-free, low-sodium vegetable broth
  • 2          teaspoons minced garlic
  • 2          teaspoons smoked paprika
  • 1          teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2       teaspoon dried thyme, crumbled
  • 1/2       teaspoon coarsely ground pepper
  • 1/8       teaspoon salt
  • 4          large eggs
  • hot pepper sauce (optional)
  1. In pressure cooker set on saute, heat oil. Cook onion 3 minutes, or until soft, stirring frequently. Turn off pressure cooker.
  2. Stir in potatoes, bell pepper, broth, garlic, paprika, cumin, thyme, pepper and salt. Secure lid. Cook on high pressure 3 minutes. Quickly release pressure. Turn off pressure cooker.
  3. Remove pressure cooker lid. Crack one egg into small bowl. Using back of spoon, make small well in potatoes. Slip egg into well. Repeat with remaining eggs, making separate well for each egg. Secure lid with pressure vent open. Saute 2 minutes. Let stand on “keep warm” setting 2 minutes, or until eggs are cooked to desired consistency.
  4. Serve hash sprinkled with dash of hot pepper sauce, if desired.

Nutritional information per serving: 258 calories; 7.5 g total fat; 2 g saturated fat; 1.5 g polyunsaturated fat; 3 g monounsaturated fat; 186 mg cholesterol; 244 mg sodium; 39 g carbohydrates; 6 g fiber; 9 g total sugars; 10 g protein.

Source: American Heart Association

Main Dishes 15 September 2023

Put a Plant-Based Spin on the Taco Night Menu

(Family Features) Mealtime traditions are common among many families, from taco Tuesdays to weekend favorites. You can add a special touch to one of the most popular traditions – taco night – with a plant-based twist.

With a nutty, smoky and truly meaty taste and texture, pecans offer a perfect plant-based protein to incorporate in favorite dishes like tacos. However, great taste is just the beginning – pecans pack a nutritious punch with a unique mix of health-promoting nutrients while shining in a wide range of flavor profiles.

To help make your next taco night all the rage among loved ones, the American Pecan Promotion Board recommends serving up authentic vegan taco recipes using pecans in place of meat in dishes like Smoky Chipotle Pecan Burrito Bowls and Vegan Pecan Al Pastor Tacos. Their texture makes them uniquely suited as a meat alternative that doesn’t sacrifice flavor so it can taste like the original and leave your family clamoring to keep taco night on the weekly menu.

Learn more and discover delicious plant-based recipes at eatpecans.com.

Smoky Chipotle Pecan Burrito Bowls

Recipe courtesy of Dominique Williamson on behalf of the American Pecan Promotion Board
Prep time: 40 minutes
Cook time: 15 minutes
Servings: 2-3

 

Pecan “Meat:”

  • 2 1⁄2     cups water
  • 1          cup pecans
  • 1⁄2         cup portobello mushrooms
  • 2          tablespoons taco seasoning
  • 2          tablespoons tamari sauce or soy sauce
  • 2          cloves garlic, minced
  • 1          tablespoon liquid smoke
  • 1          tablespoon vegan Worcestershire sauce
  • 1          tablespoon chipotle in adobo sauce

Pineapple Salsa:

  • 1          pineapple, diced
  • 2          Roma tomatoes, diced
  • 1-2       jalapenos, diced
  • 1          cup cilantro, finely chopped
  • 1          red onion, diced
  • 1⁄4        cup lime juice
  •            salt, to taste

Chipotle Crema:

  • 2          chipotle peppers in adobo sauce
  • 1          cup vegan mayo
  • 3          cloves garlic, minced
  • 2          teaspoons vinegar
  • 2          tablespoons plant-based milk
  • 1          teaspoon agave
  • 1⁄2         teaspoon salt
  1. To make pecan “meat:” In bowl of boiling water, soak pecans, covered, at least 30 minutes, or overnight in room temperature water for softer texture.
  2. Drain pecans and place in food processor with mushrooms. Pulse mixture to texture resembling meat crumbles. Avoid over-pulsing.
  3. In pan over medium heat, add pecan mixture, taco seasoning, tamari sauce, minced garlic, liquid smoke and vegan Worcestershire sauce. Cook 7-10 minutes then add chipotle in adobo. Cook 3 minutes.
  4. To make pineapple salsa: Combine pineapple, tomatoes, jalapenos, cilantro, red onion, lime juice and salt, to taste.
  5. To make chipotle crema: Combine chipotle peppers, vegan mayo, garlic, vinegar, milk, agave and salt.
  6. To assemble bowls, place pecan mixture in bowl followed by pineapple salsa and chipotle crema.

Vegan Pecan Al Pastor Tacos

Recipe courtesy of the American Pecan Promotion Board
Prep time: 35 minutes
Cook time: 10 minutes
Servings: 4-6

  •             Water
  • 2          pounds chopped pecans
  • 1          cup onion
  • 8          cloves garlic, minced
  • 8          dried guajillo peppers
  • 2          tablespoons oil
  •             salt, to taste
  •             pepper, to taste
  • 7          ounces (1 can) chipotle peppers in adobo

Toppings and Garnishes:

  • flour or corn tortillas (6 inches each)
  • cilantro
  • diced onion
  • lime
  • pineapple
  1. In bowl of boiling water, soak pecans, covered, at least 30 minutes, or overnight in room temperature water for softer texture.
  2. Drain pecans. In food processor, pulse pecans to meat-like crumbles. Do not overprocess to pecan butter.
  3. Finely chop onions, garlic and guajillo peppers.
  4. In skillet over medium-high heat, heat oil and saute onions until transparent, 2-3 minutes. Add garlic and cook 1 minute. Sprinkle with salt and pepper, to taste, and stir to combine.
  5. Add chipotle peppers in adobo and cook 1 minute. Add crumbled pecans and stir well to combine.
  6. Remove from heat and serve on tortillas.
  7. Serve with cilantro, onion, lime and pineapple.

Source: American Pecan Promotion Board

Meal Ideas 04 August 2023

Give Your Brain a Boost: 5 ways to promote brain health

(Family Features) When it comes to staying healthy, there is a natural emphasis on physical fitness. However, it’s important to know that nurturing and maintaining brain health is also important for leading a fulfilling life. 

The brain is the command center of the human body and as such, influences every aspect of life. Maintaining brain health requires providing it with nourishment, rest and healthy stimulation.

Consuming healthy, whole foods, including vegetables and fruits, such as grapes, can help establish a strong foundation for brain health. For example, grapes may help protect against metabolic decline in the brain associated with natural aging; in a human study of elderly subjects with mild cognitive decline, UCLA researchers found consuming 2 1/4 cups of grapes every day preserved healthy metabolic activity in regions of the brain associated with early-stage Alzheimer’s disease, where metabolic decline takes hold. 

Adding grapes to your favorite healthy recipes, or enjoying them as a simple snack, helps support a healthy brain. Consider these additional ways to promote positive brain health from the experts at the Mayo Clinic.

Sleep Well
Health experts recommend aiming for at least seven hours of sleep per night. As noted by the Mayo Clinic, adequate sleep may help boost overall memory and brain health by giving the brain time to effectively consolidate memories.

Follow a Healthy Diet
Eating nutritiously benefits the body in many ways, including playing a role in brain health. Healthy eating plans like the Mediterranean diet, which emphasizes plant-based foods, whole grains, fish, healthy fats, fruits and vegetables, are thought by experts to be especially beneficial. Recipes like Warm-Spiced Chickpeas and Couscous with Grapes and Arugula deliver an array of ingredients to support brain health in delicious ways. This recipe is also heart smart because what is good for the heart is also good for the brain.

Stay Social
Keep in touch with family and friends. According to health experts, including the Mayo Clinic, staying connected and interacting socially can help defend against depression and stress, which may contribute to memory loss.

Exercise Regularly
Staying physically active provides well-known benefits for the body, and exercising can also benefit the brain by increasing blood flow to it. Once your workout is over, turn to a post-workout snack like Grapes from California for an energy boost and natural hydration.

Keep Your Mind Active
Like muscles throughout your body, the brain should be used continuously to strengthen it. With nearly endless ways to stimulate the mind, there’s something for everyone to keep their brains in shape from crossword or jigsaw puzzles to reading, learning a new language, playing cards or conquering sudoku.

To find more information about the connection between grapes and health, or discover nutritious recipes, visit GrapesfromCalifornia.com.

Warm-Spiced Chickpeas and Couscous with Grapes and Arugula

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

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, plus additional, to taste, divided
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1 cup Israeli pearl couscous
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 1 can (15 ounces) no-salt-added chickpeas (garbanzo beans), drained
  • 1 cup red Grapes from California, halved
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro or parsley
  • freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 4 cups lightly packed baby arugula
  • lemon wedges
  1. In large saucepan over medium heat, heat oil. Add onion, cumin, 1/2 teaspoon salt and allspice; cook, stirring, until onion is softened, about 3 minutes. Add couscous and stir 1 minute to toast lightly. Add turmeric and water; bring to boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer until couscous is tender, about 15 minutes.
  2. Stir chickpeas, grapes and cilantro into couscous then season with salt and pepper, to taste. Transfer couscous-grape mixture to large bowl, add arugula and toss well. Serve warm or at room temperature with lemon wedges.

Nutritional information per serving: 370 calories; 12 g protein; 61 g carbohydrates; 9 g fat (17% calories from fat); 1 g saturated fat (2% calories from saturated fat); 0 mg cholesterol; 160 mg sodium; 8 g fiber.

Source: California Table Grape Commission

Meal Ideas 02 August 2023

Meal-Prep Tips for a Manageable Back-to-School Menu

(Family Features) The hustle and bustle of back-to-school season can cause chaos in households. Class time, field trips and homework typically rule each day, which can make sitting down for a meal seem like a far-off dream. One easy way to save time is simplifying family recipes and prioritizing meal-planning.

Consider these meal-planning tips from the experts at Healthy Family Project, whose partners are donating $16,000 to the Foundation for Fresh Produce to support children’s accessibility to fresh fruits and vegetables.

Choose the meals you plan to make for the week. Cut down on prep time by planning dishes with overlapping ingredients then write out a grocery list to keep from overbuying. Recipes like this Southwest Quiche Muffins Bento Box that include a brief list of widely used ingredients can help you avoid buying items you may only use once.

Stock the kitchen with ingredients your family often uses. Ensure you have the spices, seasonings, condiments, sauces and canned foods to prepare favorite meals at a moment’s notice.

Save time by washing and prepping produce once each week. For example, if you’re using sweet peppers in these Mini Sweet Pepper Sheet Pan Nachos and again in another meal that week, prep all at once so they’re ready when it’s time to cook – just be sure to store in an airtight container.

Serve quick snacks that won’t spoil dinner. Kids often need a little fuel for homework, but complicated snacks can cut into already busy schedules. Keep ingredients on hand for simple options like trail mix, fruit parfaits and meat and cheese wraps.

Use kitchen tools that speed up the process. Pressure cookers and air fryers can help you put nutritious meals on the table faster while slow cookers let you prep in the morning and come home to a hot, delicious dinner.

Visit HealthyFamilyProject.com to find more back-to-school recipes.

Mini Sweet Pepper Sheet Pan Nachos

Recipe courtesy of Healthy Family Project
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 5 minutes
Servings: 4

  • 8          ounces Pero Family Farms Mini Sweet Peppers, cut into chip shapes
  • 7          ounces tortilla chips
  • 1/2       cup sweet or red onion, diced.
  • 1/2       cup canned or fresh corn
  • 1/2       cup queso fresco cheese
  • 1/4       cup black olives
  • 1/4       cup jalapeno peppers, fresh sliced
  • 1/4       cup cilantro leaves, for garnish
  • 1          lime, cut into thin wedges, for garnish
  1. Preheat oven to 350 F.
  2. Place peppers and tortilla chips on sheet pan. Layer onion, corn, cheese, black olives and jalapeno peppers. Bake 3-5 minutes.
  3. Garnish with cilantro and lime wedges.

Southwest Quiche Muffins Bento Box

Recipe courtesy of Healthy Family Project
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 25 minutes
Servings: 12

  • 8          large eggs
  • 1/2       cup milk
  • nonstick cooking spray
  • 3/4       cup black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1/2       cup chopped Nature Fresh Farms Tomz tomatoes
  • 1/3       cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1/4       small RealSweet sweet onion, chopped
  • 1/2       cup vanilla Greek yogurt
  • 1/4       cup granola
  • 1/2       Zespri SunGold kiwi, chopped
  • 1          Bee Sweet Citrus mandarin, peeled and segmented
  1. Preheat oven to 325 F.
  2. In large bowl, whisk eggs and milk.
  3. Coat 12-cup muffin pan with nonstick cooking spray or use silicone muffin liners. Evenly divide beans, tomatoes, cheese and onion among cups. Pour eggs over top.
  4. Bake 20-25 minutes, or until eggs are set and lightly browned.
  5. Remove from oven and cool in pan 2-3 minutes. Use knife to loosen edges and remove.
  6. In cup or bowl, mix yogurt, granola and kiwi.
  7. Assemble bento box with two quiche muffins, kiwi parfait and mandarin slices.

Source: Healthy Family Project

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