Stress-Free Steps Toward Self-Care
(Family Features) Over the last few years, self-care has taken on heightened importance for moms across the country.
That is why Mrs. T’s Pierogies is partnering with actress, entrepreneur and mom JoAnna Garcia Swisher for its “All-Star Moms” campaign to spotlight the importance of finding ways to recharge and help these real-life superheroes prioritize me-time.
Simplifying self-care for All-Star Moms everywhere can be as easy as designating a “recharging room” in the home, which offers a personal space to reset and relax. When creating your recharging room, keep these tips from Garcia Swisher in mind:
- Balance Beautiful with Functional: Find hosting staples like cutting boards, utensils and napkins that match the vibe of your personal space so the area can double as an entertaining space.
- Keep it Easy to Clean: Choose furniture and decor that can handle a little mess from snacks, like Mrs. T’s Mini Pierogies and your favorite dip, which are perfect for enjoying while binge-watching favorite shows.
- Add a Personal Touch: Showcase a piece that tells a story, like a favorite embroidered pillow, piece of meaningful jewelry or framed photo of an amazing memory.
- Bring In Something Cozy: Add cozy touches like a blanket, fluffy pillow or favorite slippers for something comfortable.
- Make a Statement: Let your inner designer shine by taking a chance on something bold that represents a part of your personality you don’t normally indulge.
- Plan an Anchor Piece: This item is the foundation for everything, such as a vintage armchair, comfy couch or storage piece that tells a story. Choose this item first then build around it.
Moms can also prioritize self-care by whipping up an easy-to-make recipe, like these Margherita Pizza Pierogy Skewers, for themselves, a gathering of friends or an afternoon family snack. Pasta pockets filled with creamy mashed potatoes, cheesy goodness and other big, bold flavors, Mrs. T’s Pierogies are simple to prepare. This means more time for moms to do the stuff they love like unwinding from the day with favorite foods in their recharging spaces.
Visit MrsTsPierogies.com for more recipe inspiration.
Margherita Pizza Pierogy Skewers
Prep time: 10 minutes
Total time: 35 minutes
- 1 box (12.8 ounces) Mrs. T's Mini Classic Cheddar Pierogies
- 3 cups cherry tomatoes
- 2 tablespoons olive oil, plus additional for brushing pierogies, divided
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon oregano
- 1-2 cups mozzarella balls (18 total)
- fresh basil leaves
- bamboo skewers (10 inches)
- 2 cups fresh basil
- 2 garlic cloves, peeled
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 1/4 cup pine nuts
- 1/4 grated Parmesan cheese
- salt, to taste
- ground black pepper, to taste
- Preheat air fryer to 400 F.
- To make pizza skewers: In small bowl, combine cherry tomatoes, olive oil, salt, ground black pepper and oregano; toss to coat. Transfer tomatoes to air fryer tray or basket. Cook in air fryer 10 minutes, or until tomatoes are slightly charred; remove and set aside.
- Lay pierogies on same tray or basket. Make sure not to overlap. Lightly brush each side with olive oil. Cook about 12 minutes, or until golden brown and crispy. Flip halfway through cooking.
- To make pesto: In food processor, process basil; garlic; olive oil; pine nuts; Parmesan cheese; salt, to taste; and pepper, to taste, until smooth. (If preferred, use store-bought pesto.)
- Add one pierogy to bamboo skewer followed by one tomato, one mozzarella ball and one basil leaf. Repeat with ingredients until each skewer is filled. Drizzle with pesto.
Source: Mrs. T’s Pierogies
Pack a Perfect Al Fresco Pairing
(Family Features) Heading outdoors for a fresh, homemade meal is an alluring activity when warm weather and sunshine provide a perfect opportunity for dining on the patio. Or, if some time away from the house is calling your name, packing a lunch and taking off for the park can be an ideal getaway without getting too far from home.
Next time the sun’s rays call your name, invite friends and family for a delicious picnic loaded with warm-weather flavors. Just lay out your favorite blanket on the grass or don an outdoor table with a classic checkered tablecloth then share recipes that make al fresco meals truly memorable.
No picnic is complete without sandwiches loaded with all your favorite toppings, and these Picnic-wiches with Greek Artichoke Beet Salad provide the freshness that outdoor meals are made of. This recipe starts with a homemade relish loaded with Aunt Nellie’s Pickled Beets, artichoke hearts, olives and green onions that complements the winning combination of turkey, feta and ciabatta.
Pair your party tray of sandwiches with a perfect partner like Bean, Tortellini and Pesto Salad made with READ Bean Salad for a complete spread that’ll leave you waiting for the next opportunity to take mealtime outdoors. With just a handful of ingredients and customizable with your desired stir-ins like tomatoes, peppers and green onions, it’s ready in next to no time.
To find more picnic-worthy appetizers, meals, sides and more, visit readsalads.com and auntnellies.com.
Picnic-wiches with Greek Artichoke Beet Salad
- 1 jar (16 ounces) Aunt Nellie's Sliced Pickled Beets
- 1 jar (about 6 ounces) marinated artichoke hearts
- 1/2 cup pitted kalamata or ripe olives, sliced
- 3 tablespoons sliced green onions
- freshly ground black pepper, to taste (optional)
- 6 romaine lettuce leaves
- 1 pound thinly sliced deli turkey
- 6 ciabatta or sandwich rolls, sliced horizontally
- 1/3 cup crumbled feta cheese
- 1/4 cup pine nuts, toasted
- Drain beets and artichoke hearts, reserving 1/4 cup liquid from each. Coarsely chop beets and artichoke hearts. In medium bowl, combine beets, artichokes, olives and green onions; set aside.
- In small bowl, whisk reserved beet and artichoke liquids. Pour over beet mixture; toss gently to coat. Season with black pepper, to taste, if desired.
- Layer lettuce and turkey on bottom halves of rolls. Top with relish, as desired; feta cheese; and pine nuts. Top with remaining halves of rolls. Wrap tightly; chill up to 4 hours. Serve with remaining relish.
Bean, Tortellini and Pesto Salad
- 2 cans (15 ounces each) READ 3 or 4 Bean Salad
- 1/4 cup prepared basil pesto
- 1/2 teaspoon salt (optional)
- 1 package (9 ounces) refrigerated tortellini
- grape tomatoes (optional)
- halved cherry tomatoes (optional)
- chopped bell pepper (optional)
- thinly sliced green onions (optional)
- Drain bean salad, reserving 1/2 cup liquid. In bowl, combine reserved liquid, pesto and salt, if desired; set aside.
- Cook tortellini according to package directions; drain, rinse in cold water and drain again. Add pesto dressing; toss to coat. Add grape tomatoes, cherry tomatoes, bell pepper and green onion, as desired. Toss with bean salad.
- Serve at room temperature or chilled.
Source: READ Salads
Whip Up a Bountiful Weekend Brunch
(Family Features) Fresh air, warm sun and delicious foods make brunch a favorite weekend event. Set the stage (and the table) for an inviting experience with recipes that cover all the bases from snacks and desserts to a mouthwatering main course.
Tide the appetite of your guests with Spiced Grass-Fed Lamb Over Hummus served with toasted flatbread or tortilla chips before dishing out Overnight Apple Cinnamon French Toast Casserole for a simple centerpiece. Just as those delectable dishes are vanishing, pull Brown Sugar Pound Cake out of the oven and pair with sweetened whipped cream and fresh fruit for a sweet finishing touch.
Visit Culinary.net to find more ways to broaden your brunch menu.
Wake Up to a Wonderful Brunch
Perfect for any brunch occasion is a delicious dish that can be made a day in advance, simplifying your morning prep before guests arrive with growling stomachs.
Prepared the day before and chilled overnight, this Overnight Apple Cinnamon French Toast Casserole is ready to bake to perfection in the morning with a gooey interior and crisp exterior filled with mouthwatering flavor. Drizzle with glaze then dish out to loved ones for a delicious way to make brunch easy.
Find more breakfast and brunch recipes at Culinary.net.
Overnight Apple Cinnamon French Toast Casserole
- Nonstick cooking spray
- 1 package (20 ounces) French bread, cubed, divided
- 1 can (20 ounces) apple pie filling
- 9 eggs
- 1 cup half-and-half
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1 cup powdered sugar, plus additional (optional)
- 2 tablespoons milk, plus additional (optional)
- Spray 8-by-8-inch glass baking dish with nonstick cooking spray.
- In baking dish, add 10 ounces cubed French bread in bottom of dish. Pour apple filling over bread. Top with remaining cubed French bread. Set aside.
- In medium bowl, whisk eggs, half-and-half and cinnamon. Pour evenly over bread.
- Cover with aluminum foil and chill overnight.
- Heat oven to 325 F.
- Remove foil and bake 50-60 minutes.
- Let cool 10-15 minutes.
- In small bowl, whisk powdered sugar and milk. Add additional, if needed, until pourable glaze is reached. Drizzle over casserole before serving.
A Fresh, Flavorful Brunch Bite
Brunch is a perfect opportunity to entertain friends and family with delicious recipes that will delight their taste buds. For example, this smooth hummus is paired with tender New Zealand grass-fed lamb loin chops and fresh toppings for flavor in every bite.
Ready in less than 30 minutes, this Spiced Grass-Fed Lamb Over Hummus recipe is made using Atkins Ranch lamb, which is available at your local Whole Foods Market and hails from New Zealand where the animals are grass-fed 365 days a year and allowed to roam and graze freely over lush green hills and pastures. The result is a lean, finely textured, flavorful meat that tastes just as nature intended.
Visit beefandlambnz.com for more recipes, cooking tips and information.
Spiced Grass-Fed Lamb Over Hummus
Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 5 minutes
- 4 Atkins Ranch grass-fed lamb loin chops
- 1 teaspoon cumin powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 can (15 ounces) chickpeas
- 3 cloves garlic, chopped
- 1/4 cup tahini
- 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon paprika
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 Persian cucumber, small diced
- 1 small tomato, diced
- 2 tablespoons roasted pine nuts (or 2 tablespoons pomegranate seeds)
- parsley, chopped
- lemon wedges
- toasted flatbread or tortilla chips
- To make lamb: Remove lamb from bone, dice meat into small cubes and transfer to medium bowl.
- Add cumin powder and salt. Toss to coat. Marinate while preparing hummus.
- To make hummus: Drain chickpeas, reserving 1 tablespoon liquid. Rinse chickpeas under running water then drain.
- In bowl of food processor, pulse chickpeas, chickpea liquid and garlic until chickpeas and garlic are chopped.
- Add tahini, lemon juice, salt, cumin, paprika and olive oil. Mix until smooth paste forms. Taste and adjust by adding more salt, lemon juice or olive oil, as desired.
- Transfer hummus to large platter and spread it out.
- In large skillet, heat extra-virgin olive oil over high heat until hot. Add lamb and cook 30 seconds without moving.
- Turn lamb over and cook 30-60 seconds, repeating until all sides are browned. Remove from pan and let rest 5 minutes.
- To serve, place cucumbers and tomatoes in well of hummus then top with lamb, pine nuts and parsley.
- Top with squeeze of lemon juice and serve with flatbread or tortilla chips.
Satisfy Cake Cravings with a Brunch-Worthy Dessert
Whether your brunch feast consists of bacon and eggs, pancakes and waffles or a combination of favorites, you can cap it off with a sweet treat for the perfect ending. After all, no celebration is complete without dessert.
Once the table is cleared of the main courses, dish out decadent bites of this Brown Sugar Pound Cake baked with high-quality ingredients like C&H Sugars to end the meal on a sweet note. Top with whipped cream and your crowd's favorite fruits like strawberries and blueberries or serve the toppings separately for a customizable treat.
Visit chsugar.com for more brunch recipe ideas.
Brown Sugar Pound Cake
Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 1 hour
- 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour, plus additional for coating pan, divided
- 1 cup packed C&H Light Brown Sugar
- 1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
- 4 eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- sweetened whipped cream, for topping (optional)
- fresh fruit, such as strawberries and blueberries, for topping (optional)
- Preheat oven to 350 F.
- Grease and flour 9-by-5-by-3-inch loaf pan. In large bowl, beat sugar and butter until fluffy. Beat in eggs one at a time. Add vanilla. In separate bowl, combine 1 3/4 cups flour, baking powder and salt. Gradually add to sugar mixture. Pour batter into pan.
- Bake 1 hour, or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Remove from pan and turn out on rack to cool completely.
- Top with sweetened whipped cream and fresh fruit, if desired.
Source: C&H Sugar
Beef + Lamb New Zealand
Pesto Caprese Veal Cutlets
(Family Features) Celebrating a special moment with your special someone this Valentine’s Day starts with a romantic meal. Cooking an elegant dish in your own kitchen offers a way to impress your valentine while enjoying the comforts of home.
Easy to make and ready in 30 minutes, these Pesto Caprese Veal Cutlets showcase the versatility and beauty of humanely raised veal in a flavor-packed recipe. One bite can transport you and your loved one from the kitchen to a garden in Italy.
For added fun, try making homemade pesto to mix with grape tomatoes for a burst of flavor. Top with pine nuts and serve alongside a fresh salad or your favorite pasta for an unforgettably romantic meal.
Find more Valentine’s Day dinner ideas at Veal.org.
Watch video to see how to make this recipe!
Pesto Caprese Veal Cutlets
Funded by Beef Farmers and Ranchers
Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 15 minutes
- 1 pound veal cutlets (about 2 ounces each)
- 1 pint grape tomatoes, chopped
- 4 tablespoons prepared pesto
- 1/2 cup flour
- 2 large eggs
- 2 tablespoons whole or 2% milk
- kosher salt, to taste
- freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 1/2 cup seasoned breadcrumbs
- 2 tablespoons butter, divided
- 6 ounces regular or part-skim fresh mozzarella, sliced into 1/4-inch slices
- 3 tablespoons toasted pine nuts (optional)
- Preheat oven to 350 F. Pound veal cutlets to 1/8-inch thickness.
- In small bowl, toss tomatoes and pesto to mix well; set aside.
- Place flour in shallow dish. In second shallow dish, beat eggs, milk, salt and pepper, to taste, until blended. Place breadcrumbs in third shallow dish. Dip each cutlet into flour then egg mixture then breadcrumbs to coat both sides.
- In large nonstick skillet over medium heat, heat 1 tablespoon butter until hot. Place half of cutlets in skillet; cook 3-5 minutes, or until golden brown and veal is cooked through, turning once. Remove cutlets; place on baking sheet.
- Wipe out skillet with paper towel. Repeat with remaining butter and cutlets.
- Place one slice cheese on each cutlet. Bake 3-5 minutes until cheese is melted. Transfer cutlets to plate and evenly top with tomato mixture; sprinkle with pine nuts, if desired.
Source: New York Beef Council
Sweet and Savory School Day Snacks
(Family Features) As children head back to school and parents work to balance hectic schedules, it can be difficult to maintain a meal plan that doesn’t consume too much time. Make your morning meals, lunchbox packing and meal prepping easier by including time-saving hacks like easy-to-use ingredients and recipes.
Getting back into a routine can be stressful, but Cheesy Quinoa Bites offer a kid-friendly, parent-approved breakfast option that can be enjoyed at the kitchen counter, on the way to school or as a snack during the day. Try making them Sunday evening then simply reheating throughout the week for an appetizing way to encourage kiddos to eat their veggies and start the day strong.
For a snack to be enjoyed as a mid-morning treat or afternoon pick-me-up, pack these Pine Nut Strawberry Rice Bars in lunchboxes to help boost energy with a sweet-and-savory combination. Or, you can store them in the fridge and keep them at home as a reward after a long day of learning.
Ready in just 10 minutes, Success Boil-in-Bag quinoa and rice are the keys to these quick and easy recipes with a no measure, no mess process that makes cooking simple. Enjoyed by kids and adults alike, they’re made using high-quality ingredients to help you and your loved ones enjoy hassle-free school days from start to finish.
Find more back-to-school snacking solutions at SuccessRice.com .
Cheesy Quinoa Bites
Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 30 minutes
- 1 bag Success Tri-Color Quinoa
- 2 cups aged cheddar cheese, shredded and divided
- 2 eggs
- 3/4 cup broccoli florets, cooked and finely chopped
- 1/3 cup orange bell pepper, finely diced
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- Preheat oven to 375 F. Grease 12 muffin cups. Cook quinoa according to package directions; let cool slightly.
- Stir together quinoa, 1 1/2 cups cheddar cheese, eggs, broccoli, bell pepper and salt. Spoon mixture into prepared muffin cups. Sprinkle remaining cheese over top.
- Bake 18-20 minutes, or until golden brown and set. Let cool slightly in pan on rack; invert onto rack and let cool completely or serve warm.
Substitution: Use finely chopped sun-dried tomatoes, black olives or pickled jalapeno peppers for orange bell pepper, if desired.
Pine Nut Strawberry Rice Bars
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 25 minutes
Yield: 36 bars
- 1 bag Success White Rice or Brown Rice
- nonstick cooking spray
- 3 tablespoons butter, softened
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 1/4 cup strawberry jam
- 2 eggs, beaten
- 1 teaspoon lemon extract
- 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, sifted
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 2 teaspoons ground turmeric
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 1/2 cups fresh strawberries, hulled and sliced
- 1/2 cup unsalted pine nuts, chopped
- Prepare rice according to package directions. Coat 9-by-13-inch baking pan with nonstick cooking spray and set aside. Preheat oven to 350 F.
- In bowl or electric mixer on medium speed, beat butter, sugar and strawberry jam until thoroughly combined. Add eggs and lemon extract; continue beating until well mixed.
- In separate bowl, sift flour, baking powder, turmeric and baking soda.
- Add rice to flour mixture and mix thoroughly. Combine rice mixture with egg mixture. Gently fold in strawberries and nuts.
- Spread batter in prepared pan. Bake 25 minutes.
- Remove bars from oven and cool in pan. Once cool, transfer to cutting board and cut into 36 bars. Store in refrigerator.
Source: Success Rice
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
- 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
- Drain tuna, reserving 2 tablespoons oil.
- 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.
- 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
- 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)
- Preheat oven to 325 F.
- On a sheet tray, toast pine nuts 8-12 minutes, or until golden. Set aside to cool.
- 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.
- 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.
- Place pesto in bowl and cover tightly to avoid discoloring.
- Bring large pot of salted water to boil.
- 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.
- Add pesto gently until evenly distributed. Fold in tuna, sun-dried tomatoes, dates and olives.
- Divide between shallow bowls and finish with additional Parmigiano-Reggiano, dill and parsley, if desired.
Source: Genova Tuna
Easy Dishes to Boost Immunity
(Family Features) Staying healthy is important year-round, but especially in the cooler months when temperatures drop, people spend more time inside and germs can spread easily. What you eat and the lifestyle you embrace are critical components of staying healthy.
Nourishing meals full of fruits, vegetables, protein-rich foods and whole grains help provide the body's immune system with the nutrients it needs. Maintaining a healthy lifestyle by getting enough sleep, being physically active every day, having enough fluids and reducing stress also help keep the immune system in shape.
As a nutritious food to include on your grocery list, grapes of all colors - red, green and black - contain more than 1,600 natural plant compounds such as antioxidants and other polyphenols that help protect the health of cells throughout the body. They also contain about 82% water, so they provide important fluids for hydration, which is also critical to a healthy immune system.
Grapes can be enjoyed as a healthy snack or an immune-boosting ingredient in recipes like Chicken, Spinach and Grape Pita sandwiches and Grape and Salmon Power Salad. Each provides a mix of immune-supporting nutrients, including zinc in chicken, vitamins A and C in kale, polyphenols in grapes and other important nutrients in the salmon, walnuts and barley.
Find these recipes and more in "Eating for Immune Health" along with additional ways to eat healthy and stay well at grapesfromcalifornia.com.
Chicken, Spinach and Grape Pita
- 2 tablespoons pine nuts
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons minced shallot
- 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 pinch red pepper flakes
- 1/4 teaspoon ground sumac
- freshly ground black pepper
- 1 package (5-6 ounces) fresh baby spinach, washed and dried
- 1 1/2 cups shredded, cooked chicken (about 8 ounces)
- 1 cup red California grapes, sliced
- 1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese
- 4 whole-wheat pita breads (6 1/2 inches each), warmed and halved
- In small skillet over medium-high heat, toast pine nuts, stirring constantly until toasted, about 5 minutes. Transfer to bowl and let cool. In large bowl, whisk lemon juice, shallot, olive oil, red pepper flakes, sumac, salt and pepper. Add spinach, chicken, grapes, feta and pine nuts; toss to mix. Stuff into pita breads and serve.
Nutritional information per serving: 445 calories; 24 g protein; 46 g carbohydrates; 20 g fat (39% calories from fat); 5 g saturated fat (10% calories from saturated fat); 57 mg cholesterol; 658 mg sodium; 6 g fiber.
Grape and Salmon Power Salad
- 3/4 cup pearled barley
- 3 cups firmly packed kale leaves, torn and sliced into ribbons
- 1 cup halved red or black seedless California grapes
- 8 ounces cold, cooked salmon, skin and bones removed
- 1/2 cup walnuts, lightly toasted and coarsely chopped
- 1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1 clove garlic, mashed
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 pinch cayenne pepper
- 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- Cook barley according to package directions. Drain and cool.
- Tenderize kale by blanching in boiling water 2-3 seconds or microwaving 1 minute. Rinse pieces in cold water to stop cooking; squeeze dry. Fluff and uncrimp dry kale pieces with fingers. In medium bowl, mix barley, kale, grapes, salmon and walnuts.
- To make dressing: In small bowl, whisk lemon juice, garlic, salt, pepper and cayenne. Gradually mix in olive oil. Pour onto salad and fold gently to combine.
Nutritional information per serving: 413 calories; 15 g protein; 30 g carbohydrates; 16 g fat (47% calories from fat); 3 g saturated fat (8% calories from saturated fat); 22 mg cholesterol; 232 mg sodium; 500 mg potassium; 4 g fiber.
Snack Hacks That Really Pop
(Family Features) If spending more time at home than usual has you reaching for snacks more often, keep some quick, flavorful options on-hand to help fuel you and your family throughout the day when hunger pangs strike.
One versatile pantry staple that can fit a variety of snack cravings: popcorn. With no artificial additives or preservatives, light and airy popcorn is naturally low in fat and calories, non-GMO and gluten free, making it a sensible option to enjoy one handful at a time or sprinkled with seasonings that satisfy your taste buds. A whole-grain food, popcorn has energy-producing carbohydrates and fiber, which can help keep you satisfied longer. Plus, it’s simple enough to make that kids can help in the kitchen by popping it themselves or adding toppings.
Whether you’re craving something sweet, salty, spicy – or nearly anything else – freshly popped popcorn can serve as the perfect base ingredient to simply mix in your favorite toppings or create more unique tastes by combining a variety of herbs and spices. For example, consider these hacks to add easy flavor:
- Pop it on the stove. Stovetop popping allows you to choose your toppings. Cover the bottom of a pot with a thin layer of oil and popcorn kernels, shake to coat, cover with a lid then turn on the heat. Once popping has slowed to 2-second intervals, remove from heat and add toppings.
- Add some sweetness. When you’re in the mood for something sweet, add a dash of salt and a pinch of sugar (or more to meet your taste) to a bowl of popcorn. Or add sugar to the pan before it’s popped, like this recipe for Sugar Corn.
- Melt some butter. For a classic taste treat, melt a little butter and pour over your bowl of popped corn.
- Satisfy multiple cravings. Pop a large pot of popcorn and divide it in half; top one half with sweeter toppings like honey, which is a key ingredient in Honey Matcha Popcorn, and the other with something savory, like nutritional yeast or dill. When hunger strikes, you’re ready, regardless of the flavor craving.
- Spice it up. Cayenne pepper and a blend of other spices can be sprinkled on popcorn to create a spicier snack like Cajun Corn.
- Add mix-ins. Add dried fruits, nuts or candies to a bowl of popcorn to make your own trail mix.
- Cheese, please. A sprinkle of Parmesan cheese can make your snack a bit more substantial. Mix in some dried herbs like basil and parsley to create this Popcorn Con Pesto.
For more snack ideas that deliver on both flavor and nutrition, visit popcorn.org.
Yield: 8 cups
- 1/4 cup vegetable oil, for popping
- 1/2 cup popcorn kernels
- 1 pinch white sugar, plus additional, to taste
- In medium pan, heat oil until hot.
- Add popcorn to pan and sprinkle sugar over it. Add more sugar, if desired, to taste.
- Cover and shake pan continuously until popcorn is popped.
Honey Matcha Popcorn
Yield: 12 cups
- 12 cups unsalted, unbuttered popped popcorn
- 1/4 cup butter
- 1/4 cup honey
- 1 teaspoon matcha green tea powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon black sesame seeds
- Preheat oven to 300 F.
- Line large, rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. Place popped popcorn in large mixing bowl.
- In small saucepan over medium heat, melt together butter, honey, matcha powder and salt, stirring until dissolved. Pour over popcorn; toss to combine. Spread onto baking sheet. Sprinkle with sesame seeds.
- Bake, stirring occasionally, 25-30 minutes, or until popcorn is dry. Let cool completely before serving.
Tip: Matcha powder can be found in the tea and coffee aisle at supermarkets.
Popcorn Con Pesto
Yield: 5 quarts
- 5 quarts popped popcorn
- 1/2 cup butter
- 1 tablespoon dried basil leaves, crushed
- 1 teaspoon dried parsley, crushed
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/3 cup Parmesan cheese
- 1/2 cup pine nuts (optional)
- Place popped popcorn in large bowl and keep warm.
- In small saucepan, melt butter; add basil, parsley, garlic, Parmesan cheese and nuts, if using.
- Stir to blend.
- Pour over popped popcorn, stirring well.
Note: Dried thyme or oregano, or combination of ingredients, may be used in place of basil.
Yield: 2 1/2 quarts
- 1/4 cup butter, melted
- 2 1/2 quarts popped popcorn, warm
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 teaspoon lemon pepper
- Heat oven to 300° F.
- In bowl, pour butter over warm popcorn.
- In separate bowl, combine paprika, onion powder, garlic powder, cayenne pepper and lemon pepper; sprinkle over popcorn. Toss to mix.
- Bake 5-10 minutes for crispy popcorn.
Source: Popcorn Board