recipes

Healthy 27 March 2019

Creating Healthy Eating Habits

(Family Features) When it comes to eating, it can be difficult to find foods that kids can enjoy while also introducing them to valuable nourishment and health principles.

Instead of giving in to ice cream for every meal or forcing children to eat something their taste buds don’t agree with, there are tasty recipes like Chicken Noodle Soup, Cinnamon-Sprinkled French Toast and Flower Salad that can quench their appetites without giving up nutritional value. These fun recipes can give kids a chance to help in the kitchen, learning important life skills while spending quality time with family.

To find more fun, kid-friendly recipes that include both taste and nourishment, visit culinary.net.

The Classic Kid-Favorite

When mealtime hits and bellies start growling, turn to a classic to keep your kids full and satisfied. Chicken Noodle Soup has always been a favorite among children, so keep tradition alive in your family with this scrumptious recipe. For more delicious chicken recipes, visit eatchicken.com.

Chicken Noodle Soup

Recipe courtesy of National Chicken Council

  • 1 chicken (3 pounds), liver discarded
  • 2 1/2 quarts cold water
  • 4 carrots, peeled and cut into bite-size pieces
  • 2 onions, peeled
  • 2 celery stalks with leaves, cut into 4 pieces
  • 6 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 2 fresh thyme sprigs or 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon whole black peppercorns

Soup:

  • 1 cup small pasta, cooked
  • 1 cup frozen peas, thawed
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 tablespoons fresh dill, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped
  1. To prepare broth: In large pot over high heat, bring chicken and all remaining broth ingredients to boil. Reduce heat to low; skim surface of broth to remove foam. Let simmer 1 1/2 hours, skimming occasionally, and turning chicken. Add more water if necessary to keep chicken submerged.
  2. Remove chicken with tongs and cool. Strain broth through fine sieve. Discard celery, herbs and spices. Reserve onions and carrots. Remove any excess fat from top of broth with spoon.
  3. Pull chicken meat from bones and discard skin and bones. Dice chicken and reserve. Quarter cooked onions, if desired.
  4. To prepare soup: In large pot over high heat, return strained chicken broth and bring to rolling boil. Add reserved onions and carrots. Reduce heat to low; stir in reserved chicken meat, pasta and frozen peas, cooking until warm. Season with salt and pepper. Ladle soup into bowls and top with dill and parsley.

Connect Kids with Food for Healthy Habits

More than nine in 10 millennial moms think it's important for their kids to learn about where their food comes from, and more than three-quarters of those moms actively do things with their kids to help learn just that, according to recent findings.

Building healthy habits is the top reason moms cite for encouraging more learning when it comes to food, according to research conducted by IPSOS on behalf of Cuties – the sweet little clementines. Even when the weather is colder outside, recipes like this Flower Salad can help encourage kids to eat healthy for a lifetime.

For more kid-friendly recipe ideas and content exploring where food comes from, visit cutiescitrus.com/our-story.

Flower Salad

Recipe courtesy of Ellie Krieger
Servings: 1

Flower:

  • 1 Cuties clementine
  • 9-10 thinly sliced strips red bell pepper, cut in 1-inch pieces
  • 1/2 grape tomato
  • 1 celery stick, cut to 3 inches
  • 2 small leaves romaine lettuce
  • 1 piece English cucumber, unpeeled, seeded and cut to 1 1/2 inches then thinly sliced

Dip:

  • 2 tablespoons plain Greek yogurt
  • 1/2 teaspoon honey
  • 1/4 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
  1. Peel clementine and separate sections almost all the way, leaving attached at the base. Place on plate with base down. Place piece of red bell pepper between each citrus section, and half tomato in center to form flower.
  2. Place celery and lettuce leaves underneath as stem and leaves. Arrange cucumber slices below to represent grass.
  3. In small bowl, stir together yogurt, honey and lemon juice.
  4. Serve dip in dish alongside flower, or in a mound underneath cucumber slices.

Nutritional information per serving: 76 calories; 0.5 g total fat; (0.3 g saturated fat, 0.2 g poly fat); 4 g protein; 15 g carbohydrates; 2 g fiber; 2 mg cholesterol; 21 mg sodium.

A Memorable Morning Meal

Whether it’s before school or after sleeping in on a Saturday morning, breakfast is a popular meal for children of all ages. Next time you and your family rise and shine, go with this recipe for Cinnamon-Sprinkled French Toast to keep the whole gang happy. Find more kid-friendly recipes for every meal at nutrition.gov.

Cinnamon-Sprinkled French Toast

Recipe courtesy of the USDA

  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 tablespoons fat-free milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 2 slices whole-wheat bread
  • 1 teaspoon soft margarine
  • 4 teaspoons light pancake syrup
  1. In flat-bottomed bowl, crack eggs. Thoroughly whisk in milk and cinnamon. Dip bread slices, one at a time, into egg mixture, wetting both sides. Re-dip, if necessary, until all egg mixture is absorbed into bread.
  2. Meanwhile, heat large, nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add butter. Place dipped bread slices in skillet. Cook 2 1/2-3 minutes per side, or until both sides are golden brown.
  3. Drizzle with syrup. Serve when warm.

Nutritional information per serving: 190 calories; 8 g total fat; (3 g saturated fat); 10 g protein; 19 g carbohydrates; 2 g fiber; 215 mg cholesterol; 250 mg sodium.

Photo courtesy of Getty Images (Chicken soup photo and French toast photo)

Source: Culinary.net

Meal Ideas 26 March 2019

Simply Delicious

(Family Features) Most parents face the same mealtime dilemma - making affordable and convenient food that the whole family will like. Time is short, palates are picky and some fear it will cost too much to put real food on the table.

For recipes and how-to videos, visit the Real Food Project at www.Hellmanns.com or www.BestFoods.com.

Pimento (Red Pepper) Cheese-Bacon Burgers

A Bobby Flay Recipe
Prep Time: 15 minutes / Chill Time: 30 minutes
4 servings

  • 1/3 cup Hellmann's® or Best Foods® Real Mayonnaise
  • 1/4 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne powder
  • 1/4 pound extra sharp white cheddar cheese, coarsely grated
  • 1/4 pound extra sharp yellow cheddar cheese, coarsely grated
  • 1/3 cup drained and finely chopped roasted red peppers or piquillo
  • 1-1/2 pounds lean ground beef
  • 4 hamburger buns
  • 8 thick slices double smoked bacon, crisp-cooked
  1. Combine mayonnaise, salt, pepper and cayenne in large bowl with fork. Stir in cheese and roasted peppers. Cover and refrigerate at least 30 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, shape ground beef into 4 patties. Season, if desired, with salt and black pepper; set aside.
  3. Grill or pan fry burgers, turning once, 8 minutes or until desired doneness. During last 30 seconds of cooking, evenly top each burger with cheese mixture, then cook covered until cheese melts slightly. Arrange burgers on buns, then evenly top with bacon.

Smoked Chile Cole Slaw

A Bobby Flay recipe
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Chill Time: 20 minutes
4 servings

  • 1/2 cup Hellmann's® or Best Foods® Real Mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons chipotle peppers in adobo sauce
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 2 teaspoons honey
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 medium head green cabbage, finely shredded
  • 2 large carrots, finely shredded
  • 1 small onion, halved and thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  1. Combine mayonnaise, chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, lime juice, honey and cumin in large bowl. Season, if desired, with salt and black pepper. Stir in remaining ingredients. Cover and refrigerate at least 20 minutes before serving.

Goat Cheese Crostini With Grape Salsa

A Bobby Flay Recipe
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Stand Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 8 minutes
6 servings

  • 1 cup red grapes, diced
  • 1 cup blue and/or black grapes, diced
  • 1/2 small red onion, finely chopped
  • 1 jalapeño pepper, finely chopped
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro or flat-leaf parsley, plus leaves for garnish
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 4 slices whole grain bread, quartered, OR 1 baguette, thinly sliced into 16 pieces
  • 6 ounces herbed goat cheese, slightly softened
  • 1/3 cup Hellmann's® or Best Foods® Real Mayonnaise
  1. Combine grapes, onion, jalapeño pepper, cilantro and vinegar in medium bowl. Season, if desired, with salt and pepper. Let stand at least 30 minutes.
  2. Preheat oven to 375°F. Arrange bread on large baking sheet in a single layer and bake, turning once, 8 minutes or until lightly golden brown and crisp on both sides. Remove and let cool.
  3. Combine goat cheese with mayonnaise in small bowl until smooth. Season, if desired, with salt and pepper. Evenly spread cheese mixture onto crostinis, then top with grape salsa.

Grilled Potato Wedges With Malt Vinegar-Tarragon Dip

A Bobby Flay Recipe
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Chill Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
6 servings

  • 2/3 cup PLUS 1 teaspoon malt vinegar
  • 1-1/2 cups Hellmann's® or Best Foods® Real Mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon chopped tarragon
  • 5 Russet or all-purpose potatoes, scrubbed
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped flat-leaf parsley
  1. Bring 2/3 cup vinegar to a boil over high heat in small saucepan and continue boiling until reduced by half. Remove saucepan from heat and let cool 5 minutes.
  2. Combine mayonnaise, cooled vinegar, remaining 1 teaspoon vinegar and tarragon in medium bowl. Season, if desired, with salt and pepper. Cover and refrigerate at least 30 minutes.
  3. Cover potatoes with water in 4-quart saucepot; bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat and simmer 15 minutes or until potatoes are tender, but still firm. Drain and cool slightly. Cut each potato lengthwise into 8 slices.
  4. Brush potatoes with oil and season, if desired, with salt and pepper. Grill, turning once, 4 minutes or until golden and cooked through. Arrange potatoes on serving platter, then sprinkle with parsley. Serve with dip.

Mayonnaise mixture is also delicious with hot cooked chicken fingers or fish.

Source: Hellmann's

Meal Ideas 26 March 2019

Time-Saving Secret for Busy Cooks

Roasted Slicing Chicken From the Deli

(Family Features) Looking for a way to get out of the kitchen to enjoy warm weather activities with friends and family? Here's a secret for cooks looking for time-saving shortcuts that won't compromise the taste of homemade meals. Fully cooked, roasted chicken sliced to desired thickness at the deli counter can save hours of preparation time for dishes calling for roasted chicken as an ingredient. By substituting chicken that's already been slow-roasted and seasoned when bought sliced at the deli, meals can still have the homemade taste of roasted chicken even if the cook has spent the day at the beach, on the golf course or in the garden.

Deli slicing chicken is versatile, too. It can be sliced thick and then cut into pieces and tossed into a refreshing salad, or give a boost to a summery soup. Cut thin, deli slicing chicken goes gourmet when layered on soft slices of multigrain bread and combined with an assortment of fresh vegetables and spices.

Visit www.boarshead.com for more time-saving meal preparation tips.

Chicken Lettuce Wraps with Barbecue Dressing

Servings: 4 wraps
Light and satisfying, tangy and sweet - this recipe has it all. Juicy roast chicken topped with a sweet and mild barbecue sauce and wrapped up in tender butter lettuce leaves makes a quick lunch or a light supper - and it all comes together in just minutes.

  • 2 cups Boar's Head EverRoast Oven Roasted Chicken Breast, julienned
  • 4 large butter lettuce leaves
  • 1 cup mixed cucumber and green onion strips
  • 1/4 cup barbecue sauce
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon mayonnaise
  • 1 teaspoon mix black and white sesame seeds
  1. Place the chicken onto the lettuce leaves and top with the cucumbers and onions. Mix the barbecue sauce with the lemon juice and mayonnaise and pour over the top. Sprinkle with the sesame seeds.

Chicken Gazpacho Sandwich

Servings: 4
The pungent tastes of roasted red peppers, sun-dried tomatoes, sweet carrots, cucumbers and spices turn a simple chicken sandwich into the perfect gourmet meal for a warm day or evening.

  • 8 slices multi-grain bread
  • 1 1/2 cups mayonnaise
  • 1 small cucumber, sliced into thin rounds
  • 1 cup grated carrots
  • 1 teaspoon dried rosemary
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 cup drained roasted red peppers, cut julienne style
  • 1/2 cup drained, sun-dried tomatoes in oil, cut julienne style
  • 12 slices Boar's Head EverRoast Oven Roasted Chicken Breast
  1. Place 4 bread slices on a work surface. Spread each with a layer of mayonnaise and add enough cucumbers to form a layer. Sprinkle with carrots and a pinch of dried rosemary and garlic powder. Mix peppers with tomatoes and layer on top of carrots. Evenly divide chicken among sandwiches. Close sandwich with remaining bread slices and serve.

Pulled Chicken and Tomato-Vegetable Soup

Servings: 6
Cut the cooking time for this flavorful soup by substituting deli slicing chicken for recipes calling for pre-cooked chicken. Make sure to use a quality chicken that is sliced fresh at the deli for a homemade chicken taste.

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/4 head cabbage, shredded
  • 1 red onion, cut into a small dice
  • 3 stalks celery, finely chopped
  • 4 small Yukon Gold potatoes, cut into a 1/2-inch dice
  • 2 large carrots, cut into
  • 1-inch julienne strips
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano, 6 sprigs for garnish
  • 2 14-ounce cans chicken broth
  • 2 14-ounce cans fire-roasted tomatoes with liquid
  • 1 pound (1/4 inch thick) slices Boar's Head EverRoast Oven Roasted Chicken Breast, cut in strips
  1. Add olive oil to large soup pot and heat at medium high until oil is hot. Add cabbage, onion, celery and potatoes; sauté for 8 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add carrots, dried oregano, chicken broth and tomatoes. Cook 20 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Use your fingers to pull chicken into strips; add to soup. Serve in individual bowls garnished with an oregano stem.

Source: Boar's Head

Holiday 01 November 2018

Holiday Inspiration for Every Occasion

(Family Features) The holiday season is full of opportunities to eat, drink and gather around the table with the ones you love. Whether it's a family dinner, office potluck or neighborhood brunch, good food is a cornerstone of nearly every great holiday celebration.

From hosting guests to kids returning home on winter break, the holiday season can require more planning than usual. Ensure you're prepared this year with a savory centerpiece staple like Smithfield Spiral Sliced Ham or a crowd-pleasing favorite like Bacon French Toast Bake, giving you more time to soak in the best parts of the season.

To keep the holiday season fresh and exciting, consider putting a twist on a classic, like adding sausage to a traditional side dish like Sausage and Ciabatta Stuffing. Available as links, patties and rolls, Smithfield's line of Fresh Breakfast Sausage is made using premium, high-quality pork to provide big flavor that can be enjoyed any time of day.

For more recipes and tips that can help make your holiday soiree a breeze, visit Smithfield.com/HolidayHub.


Bacon French Toast Bake

  • 1 small loaf challah or brioche bread, cut into 1/2-inch-thick slices
  • nonstick cooking spray
  • 6 large eggs
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 1/2 cup grated Gruyere cheese
  • 1/3 cup maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 4 slices Smithfield Bacon, cooked and chopped
  • 1/4 cup grated Swiss cheese
  • 1/2 cup blackberries
  • 1 teaspoon powdered sugar, for dusting
  1. Leave bread slices out, at room temperature, at least 3 hours, or until slightly stale.
  2. Generously coat 9-inch baking dish with nonstick cooking spray. Arrange bread, slightly overlapping.
  3. In large bowl, whisk eggs, heavy cream, milk, Gruyere cheese, maple syrup and cinnamon. Add chopped bacon, saving 2 tablespoons for later. Pour over bread in baking dish. With hands, press down on bread to submerge.
  4. Cover baking dish with plastic wrap. Refrigerate at least 5 hours, or overnight.
  5. Heat oven to 375 F. Remove plastic. Sprinkle remaining bacon and Swiss cheese over top of bread mixture.
  6. Bake 45-50 minutes, or until golden brown and set.
  7. Top with blackberries and dust with powdered sugar before serving.

Sausage and Ciabatta Stuffing

  • 1 large loaf ciabatta bread, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided
  • 1 pound Smithfield Fresh Sausage Roll
  • 1 cup carrots, diced
  • 1 1/2 cups onion, diced
  • 2 cups celery, diced
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons chopped parsley, plus additional for garnish
  • 2 tablespoons chopped rosemary
  • salt, to taste
  • freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  1. Heat oven to 325 F.
  2. Bake ciabatta bread cubes until lightly toasted, about 15 minutes. Set aside. Increase oven temperature to 375 F.
  3. In skillet over medium-high heat, melt 1 tablespoon butter.
  4. Cook sausage, breaking meat into medium pieces, until browned, about 8-10 minutes. Transfer sausage to large bowl; set aside.
  5. Add remaining butter to skillet; cook carrots, onions and celery until soft, 5-7 minutes, and transfer to bowl with sausage.
  6. In large bowl, mix bread cubes, chicken broth, olive oil, parsley, rosemary and salt and pepper, to taste. Add vegetable and sausage mixture to bread cubes mixture and combine.
  7. Spread evenly in greased 9-by-13-inch baking dish. Bake until golden brown and bread is slightly crisp on top, 30-35 minutes.
  8. Garnish with additional parsley before serving.

Tip: Recipe can be made one day before and refrigerated overnight.

Source: Smithfield

Meal Ideas 19 February 2019

Savor the Season

(Family Features) Spice things up this season with some uniquely delicious recipe options that are perfect for most any meal occasion.

Serve Beet, Feta and Walnut Scones for brunch or as an accompaniment to soups or salads. Starting with Aunt Nellie’s Pickled Beets cuts time and adds flavor.

Quick Sausage and German Potato Salad Skillet is on the lunch or dinner table in 20 minutes thanks to pre-cooked sausages and a can of heat-and-eat READ German Potato Salad.

Sides are easy, too. A jar of Aunt Nellie’s Glazed Small Sliced Carrots is the main ingredient in this quick-to-assemble Spicy Carrot-Sweet Potato Casserole. If roasted vegetables are more your style, try Thyme-Scented Roasted Vegetables, accented with sweet, tangy pickled beets.

For more seasonal recipes, visit AuntNellies.com and READsalads.com.

Thyme-Scented Roasted Vegetables and Beets

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

  • 1          jar (16 ounces) Aunt Nellie’s Whole Pickled Beets, drained, halved
  • 1/2       pound baby carrots
  • 1          medium onion, cut through core into 1/2-inch wedges
  • 8          ounces shallots, peeled, halved if large
  • 1          tablespoon olive oil
  • 1          teaspoon dried thyme leaves
  • 1/2       teaspoon salt
  • 1/4       teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1          clove garlic, minced
  1. Heat oven to 400°F.
  2. Line 15-by-10-inch jelly roll pan with aluminum foil. Add beets, carrots, onion and shallots. Drizzle with oil; sprinkle with thyme, salt and pepper; toss to coat.
  3. Roast, uncovered, 15 minutes. Add garlic to vegetables; toss well. Return to oven and continue roasting 15 minutes, or until vegetables are tender and lightly browned.

Note: 1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme may be substituted for dried thyme leaves.

Spicy Carrot-Sweet Potato Casserole

Servings: 6
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 30 minutes

  • 1          jar (15.5 ounces) Aunt Nellie’s Glazed Small Sliced Carrots
  • 1/4       cup orange juice
  • 1          teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2       teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2       teaspoon grated orange peel
  • 1          cup cooked sweet potato pieces (about 2 inches each)
  • 1/4       cup coarsely chopped pecans
  1. Heat oven to 350°F. In large bowl, gently stir together carrots with jarred liquid, orange juice, cinnamon, ginger and orange peel.
  2. Spray 1 1/2- to 2-quart baking dish with nonstick cooking spray. Arrange sweet potatoes in dish. Pour carrot mixture over potatoes. Sprinkle with pecans.
  3. Bake 30 minutes, or until bubbling and heated through. Allow to stand 5-10 minutes before serving.

Note: 1/2 cup chopped apples can be added to carrot mixture.

Beet, Feta and Walnut Scones

Servings: 8
Prep time: 25 minutes
Cook time: 20 minutes

  • 1          jar (16 ounces) Aunt Nellie’s Sliced Pickled Beets
  • 2          cups all-purpose flour
  • 1          tablespoon baking powder
  • 1/2       teaspoon salt
  • 1/2       teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/2       cup milk (2 percent or skim)
  • 1/3       cup olive oil
  • 1          egg, beaten
  • 1/4       cup thinly sliced green onion
  • 1          tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary
  • 1          small clove garlic, minced
  • 2/3       cup crumbled feta cheese (not fat-free)
  • 1/2       cup coarsely chopped toasted walnuts
  • 8          rosemary sprigs
  1. Heat oven to 400°F.
  2. Drain beets well. Chop coarsely; set aside on paper towels.
  3. In large bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, salt and pepper.
  4. In small bowl, whisk together milk, oil and egg. Stir in onion, rosemary and garlic. Add milk mixture to flour mixture. Stir to combine. Gently stir in feta and walnuts, just until combined, then add beets and stir gently to combine.
  5. Turn out onto lightly floured surface. Knead dough three to four times to smooth. Pat into 9-inch round on ungreased baking sheet. Cut into 8 triangles; do not separate. Lightly press rosemary sprigs into each scone.
  6. Bake 20 minutes, or until light golden-brown. Cool on baking sheet; set on wire rack. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Quick Sausage and German Potato Salad Skillet

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

  • 2          teaspoons olive or vegetable oil
  • 1          medium red or yellow onion, cut into 1/2-inch thick wedges
  • 1          cup chopped red bell pepper
  • 3/4       pound pre-cooked smoked chicken or turkey sausage links
  • 1          can (15 ounces) READ German Potato Salad
  • 1/4       teaspoon cracked black pepper
  • chopped parsley (optional)
  1. In large skillet, heat oil over medium heat. Add onion and bell pepper. Cook and stir 1 minute. Add sausages; continue cooking 5 minutes until browned and heated through, turning occasionally. Remove sausages from skillet.
  2. Add potato salad and black pepper to skillet. Stir to combine with onion mixture. Return sausages to skillet. Cook 2-3 minutes until heated through. Sprinkle with parsley, if desired.

Source: Seneca Foods

Meal Ideas 01 August 2018

Reserve the Rind

(Family Features) Watermelon rinds make for more than just attractive containers for serving cold dishes and beverages. The rind can also be used in creative, edible ways and is good for your heart.

Watermelon, both the flesh and the rind, is a good source of a compound called citrulline, an amino acid that raises levels of arginine in the blood, which in turn helps maintain blood flow, healthy blood vessels and heart health. 

Whether you’re eating for good health or good taste (or both), you can use the rind to make pickles and relishes, grate into salads and slaws, toss into stir-fry and add to smoothies and juice. The key to chowing down on watermelon rind is knowing how to prepare it. These three preparation methods can help you put that rind to good use: 

Pickled: Watermelon rind is similar to a cucumber, which is why it’s no surprise that pickled watermelon rind is a popular option.

Juiced: Most people know you can enjoy juice from red flesh of the melon, but you can juice the rind, too. Just like the watermelon flesh, the rind is loaded with water and nutrients.

Stir-Fried: When it’s cut up, watermelon rind is just like a vegetable, which means it can be tossed in a pan and stir-fried right alongside broccoli and carrots.

Look for more creative ways to use your watermelon rind at watermelon.org.

Watermelon Rind Pickles

  • 4          cups water
  • 1          tablespoon coarse salt
  • 2          cups peeled watermelon rind, cut into 1-1/2-by-2-inch pieces (leave thin layer of pink)
  • 3/4       cup granulated sugar
  • 1          allspice berry
  • 1/2       cup cider vinegar
  • 4          peppercorns
  • 4          whole cloves
  • 1/2       teaspoon pickling spice
  • 1          long slice of fresh gingerroot
  • 1/4       teaspoon celery seeds
  1. In large pot over medium-high heat, bring water and salt to boil. Add rind pieces and boil until tender, about 5 minutes. Strain. Transfer rinds to large metal bowl.
  2. In saucepan, combine watermelon rind, sugar, berries, vinegar, peppercorns, cloves, pickling spice, gingerroot and celery seeds. Bring to boil over medium-high heat, stirring until sugar dissolves. Simmer 15 minutes until slightly reduced. Pour over watermelon rinds in bowl. Place plate over top to keep rinds submerged in liquid.
  3. Cover and refrigerate 1 day. Transfer to glass jar and keep sealed in refrigerator up to 2 weeks.

Watermelon Rind Stir-Fry

  • 2          teaspoons sesame oil
  • 2          cups watermelon rind, julienned (white part only, from about 1/2 of seedless watermelon)
  • 1          cup julienned carrots
  • 1/2       cup chives, cut into 3-inch pieces
  • 1          tablespoon honey
  • 1          tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1          tablespoon fish sauce
  • 1          clove garlic, minced
  • 1          piece (about 1 inch) ginger, minced
  • 1/2       cup fresh basil leaves, torn
  • 1/4       cup cilantro leaves
  • 1/4       cup mint leaves
  • crushed red pepper flakes (optional)
  1. In wok over high heat, heat sesame oil. Add watermelon rind and carrots and fry, stirring constantly, 1-2 minutes. Let sit over high heat 1 additional minute without stirring. Add chives and stir to combine.
  2. In small bowl, whisk together honey, soy sauce, fish sauce, garlic and ginger. Pour sauce over watermelon rind and cook, stirring, 30 seconds-1 minute, until fragrant.
  3. Transfer to serving dish. Add basil, cilantro and mint, tossing to combine. Sprinkle with red pepper flakes, if desired, and serve.

Source: National Watermelon Promotion Board

Meal Ideas 05 February 2019

6 Ways to Build a Better Lunchbox

(Family Features) Coming up with fresh ideas every day to keep kids’ lunches exciting is no small task. When the goal is an empty lunchbox and a full, happy tummy, the winning combination is a blend of nutrition and flavor.

Step up your game this school year with these ideas for a better lunchbox:

Get creative. Foods that look can good taste good, too. Transform sandwiches into fun shapes using cookie cutters or make tiny heart- or star-shaped, bite-size pieces of cheese for a fun finger food. Another fun idea: thread sliced and bite-sized vegetables on a wooden stick for a no-cook kabob. For a sweet variation, use fruit instead and sprinkle with coconut for extra flavor.

Skip the packaging. Little fingers can struggle to open pre-packaged foods, so instead opt for fresh ingredients that fit into a bento-style box. Not only can kids see what tasty treats await and dig straight into their meals, less packaging means less processing, which is good for their health and the environment.

Keep it simple. Opt for delicious, flavorful foods that deliver nutrients kids need and the taste they want without any extras. An option like Hidden Valley Simply Ranch makes for a rich and creamy complement to carrot sticks, cucumber and other lunchbox staples. With no artificial preservatives, flavors or colors this ranch is perfect for encouraging kids to eat the veggies you pack. Look for Classic Ranch or for a special twist, try flavors such as Cucumber Basil or Chili Lime.

Rely on the familiar. Refueling during the day is important to keep kids focused and able to mentally and physically tackle the rest of the school day. Avoid trying out new foods at lunchtime and save experimenting with new flavors for meals at home.

Go for variety. Representing multiple foods groups isn’t only a good way to deliver good nutrition, the variety in colors and textures can make the meal more interesting and encourage kids to eat more. Include savory meats, crunchy crackers, veggies and sweet fruits.

Add a treat. Whether it’s a favorite fruit or yogurt, a single piece of candy or even a simple note that says “I love you and I’m proud of you,” find a way to add something sweet to every lunch and bring a smile to your child’s daily routine.

Look for more kid-friendly meals at hiddenvalley.com
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Portable Veggie Kabobs with Tangy Veggie Dip

Prep time: 5 minutes
Cook time: 10 minutes
Total time: 15 minutes
Servings: 6-8

  • 1          cucumber, sliced
  • 1          cup broccoli florets
  • 2          carrots, sliced
  • 8          cherry tomatoes
  • 6-8       wooden skewers
  • Hidden Valley Simply Ranch
  1. Gently thread cucumber slices, broccoli, carrot slices and cherry tomatoes on skewers, placing 2-3 pieces of each veggie on each skewer to make a rainbow of colors.
  2. Serve ranch dressing with veggies for dipping.

Tip: Add cheese cubes for protein on kabobs, if desired.

Photo courtesy of Mick Jones

Source: Hidden Valley

Grilling-Tailgating 16 January 2019

Dig Into 7 Game-Winning Dips

(Family Features) Although you may share a passion for a favorite sports team, not everyone has the same taste when it comes to the tailgating menu. Enter these seven dips: from a yogurt turmeric dip to spicy buffalo chicken dip, you’re sure to please nearly every game-day guest.

Visit McCormick.com or find McCormick on Facebook and Pinterest for more recipes to make your tailgating menu a winner.

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Texas Trash Dip

There won’t be any trash talk when it comes to this dip. It’s the ultimate ooey, gooey, cheesy dish that’s sure to be all the rage at game-day parties and social gatherings.

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Easy Buffalo Chicken Dip

Games and wings go hand-in-hand, but you can keep hands mess-free with this alternative that combines all the flavors of savory Buffalo chicken wings in a warm, creamy dip. 

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Sweet Georgia Peach and Pecan Dip

Think outside the box this season with a dip that is the perfect blend of salty and sweet. Bacon, Georgia peaches, sweet onions and a brown sugar bourbon marinade are complemented by pecans for a nutty, crunchy finish.

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Creamy Turmeric and Cinnamon Dip

Low-fat yogurt and milk blend with golden turmeric and cinnamon for a tangy dip just waiting for crispy dippers like pita chips and veggies.

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Roasted Carrot Yogurt Dip

Move over cheesy, chili dips – the tangy sweetness of orange juice, carrots and honey make for a simple dip you can feel good about devouring.

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Spinach Artichoke and Dill Dip

Warm up with this crowd-pleasing dip made with fresh spinach, artichoke hearts, cream cheese and Parmesan.

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Spicy Black Bean Dip

Simply mix together a can of black beans, chopped tomatoes and spices like chili powder and cumin for an easy dip to throw together for last-minute guests.

Source: McCormick

Videos 16 January 2019

Cooking Up Comfort

Hearty dishes for cold, dreary days

(Family Features) On crisp winter days when the wind blows cold, warming up from the inside-out with hearty comfort foods can feel like a worthy solution. From chili to cornbread to dumplings, flavorful and filling foods prepared without an overload of ingredients certainly can provide a feel-good boost on chilly evenings.

Chili, a classic wintertime favorite, can be taken to the next level with a few tasty additions. Make a spicy version by mixing in bacon, sweet potatoes and a chopped jalapeno pepper for a quick warm-up. A simple and somewhat sweet spin on a classic, comforting side, Honey-Pumpkin Cornbread pairs well with the slightly spicy chili. If you’re really looking to put the comfort in a comforting main course, this Skillet Chicken and Dumplings recipe takes less than an hour to create.

To make these heart-warming recipes stand out from a crowd, Circulon Symmetry Chocolate Cookware provides dishwasher-safe, premium nonstick cookware for easy cleanup and food release that slides right off.

Find more information and comforting family-favorite recipes at circulon.com.

Watch video to see how to make this delicious recipe!

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Sweet Potato and Black Bean Chili

Prep time: 30 minutes
Cook time: 60 minutes
Servings: 6

  • Circulon Symmetry Chocolate 5.5-Quart Casserole
  • 6          slices thick-cut smoked bacon, chopped
  • 1          pound sweet potatoes, peeled and diced into 3/4-inch pieces
  • 2          medium onions, chopped
  • 1          jalapeno pepper, seeded and finely chopped
  • 5          garlic cloves, minced
  • 2          tablespoons chili powder
  • 2          teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1/2       teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/4       teaspoon ground chipotle pepper
  • 2          cups chicken broth
  • 1          can (14 1/2 ounces) no-salt-added fire-roasted diced tomatoes
  • 1          can (15 ounces) no-salt-added black beans
  • 1/2       cup quick-cooking barley
  • 1/2       teaspoon salt
  1. Heat casserole over medium heat. Add bacon and cook until browned and crisp, about 7-8 minutes. Using slotted spoon, transfer bacon to paper towel-covered plate.
  2. Reduce bacon fat in casserole to 2 tablespoons and return to stove over medium-high heat. Add sweet potatoes, onions and jalapeno pepper; cook, stirring occasionally, until onion is slightly softened, about 5 minutes.
  3. Add garlic and cook 1 minute. Stir in chili powder, cumin, oregano and ground chipotle; cook until fragrant, 15 seconds.
  4. Pour in broth, tomatoes, beans and barley; reduce heat to medium-low, cover and simmer until sweet potatoes are tender and barley is cooked through, about 20 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in bacon and salt; let stand 15 minutes before serving.

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Honey-Pumpkin Cornbread

Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 20 minutes
Servings: 12-16

  • Circulon Nonstick 9-Inch Square Baking Pan
  • 1 1/2    cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/4    cups yellow cornmeal
  • 3          tablespoons sugar
  • 1 1/2    teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4       teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2       teaspoon sea salt
  • 1          cup canned pumpkin puree
  • 2          large eggs, at room temperature
  • 5          tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 4          tablespoons honey
  • 1/3       cup buttermilk
  • 1          tablespoon grated orange zest
  1. Heat oven to 400° F. Lightly butter baking pan.
  2. In bowl, combine flour, cornmeal, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
  3. In separate bowl, whisk pumpkin puree, eggs, butter, honey, buttermilk and orange zest. Stir flour mixture into pumpkin mixture until moistened; transfer to prepared baking pan.
  4. Bake until cornbread pulls away from sides of pan and toothpick inserted into center comes out clean, 20-22 minutes. Cool in pan 5 minutes. Remove from pan and cool on wire rack at least 10 minutes before cutting.

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Skillet Chicken and Dumplings

Prep time: 30 minutes
Cook time: 40 minutes
Servings: 8

  • Circulon Symmetry Chocolate 3.5-Quart Saucepan
  • 3          containers (32 ounces each) low-sodium chicken stock
  • Circulon Symmetry Chocolate 12-Inch Essentials Pan
  • 2          medium onions, diced
  • 4          carrots, peeled and sliced into 1-inch rounds
  • 1          head broccoli, chopped
  • 2          tablespoons butter
  • 2          tablespoons olive oil
  • 2-3       cups chopped chicken
  • 2          bay leaves
  • 1/2       teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2       teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/2       teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1          teaspoon powdered garlic
  • 1/2       teaspoon salt
  • 1/4       teaspoon pepper
  • 1/2       cup half-and-half
  • 2          tablespoons cornstarch

Dumplings:

  • 1 1/2    cups whole-wheat or all-purpose flour
  • 2          teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2       teaspoon salt
  • 1          cup half-and-half

Garnish:

  • fresh grated Parmesan cheese
  • fresh black pepper
  1. In saucepan, bring chicken stock to boil.
  2. In essentials pan, saute onions, carrots and broccoli with butter. Add olive oil as needed if pan looks dry. Cook until onions are translucent and carrots are beginning to soften.
  3. Add chopped chicken, bay leaves, oregano, basil, thyme, garlic, salt, pepper and hot chicken stock to skillet. Simmer 20-30 minutes until vegetables are softened. Adjust seasoning, as necessary.
  4. Whisk cornstarch into half-and-half until smooth. Whisk into soup and simmer 5 minutes, until slightly thickened.
  5. To make Dumplings: In medium bowl, mix flour, baking powder, salt and half-and-half. Swirl soup with wooden spoon and add heaping tablespoons into center of soup at strong simmer. Continue adding until all dumpling batter is used. Cover with lid and cook on high 2-3 minutes.
  6. Serve topped with grated Parmesan and fresh cracked pepper.

Source: Circulon

Videos 26 March 2019

Easy Spring Lamb, Sides and Treats

(Family Features) This Easter holiday, hop into a new tradition and swap your classic ham for savory lamb.

Cooking lamb can be easier than many might think, especially when using a pressure cooker. You can combine aromatic herbs with white wine for a juicy leg of lamb in under an hour. Or try baking a rack of lamb crusted with a quinoa-hazelnut combination and topped with a mint pesto.

For a perfect, set-and-forget side, try slow cooker carrots, sprinkled with dill weed and lemon extract for a delightful spring dish. End the meal with festive cupcakes modeled after the Easter bunny, which can satisfy the sweet tooth of guests of all ages.

Find more Easter recipes at McCormick.com and find McCormick Spice on Facebook and Pinterest.

Watch video to see how to make these adorable cupcakes!

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Bunny Butt Cupcakes

Recipe courtesy of Amanda Rettke of “I am baker”
Prep time: 45 minutes
Cook time: 20 minutes
Servings: 24

  • 1          2-layer size white cake mix
  • 1          tablespoon, plus 2 teaspoons, McCormick Pure Lemon Extract, divided
  • 1          tablespoon McCormick Pure Vanilla Extract
  • 3/4       cup white chocolate chips
  • 2          sticks butter, softened
  • 16        ounces confectioners’ sugar
  • 2          tablespoons milk
  • 10        drops McCormick Green Food Color
  • 1-2       drops McCormick Red Food Color
  • 12        large marshmallows, halved crosswise
  • 3          tablespoons white nonpareil sprinkles
  1. Prepare cake mix as directed on package, adding 1 tablespoon lemon extract and vanilla. Spoon 3 tablespoons batter into 24 paper-lined muffin cups. Bake as directed on package for cupcakes. Cool cupcakes on wire rack.
  2. To make bunny feet: In medium, microwave-safe bowl, microwave white chocolate chips on high 30 seconds. Stir until completely melted and smooth. Spoon into pastry bag or re-sealable plastic bag. Snip small corner from bag. Pipe 24 pairs of bunny feet onto parchment or wax paper-lined cookie sheet. Use toothpick to smooth out bumps or rough edges, and gently tap cookie sheet on counter to help settle. Allow to harden 2 minutes in freezer or 15 minutes in refrigerator.
  3. To make frosting: In large bowl, beat butter and remaining lemon extract until light and fluffy. Gradually add confectioners’ sugar, beating well after each addition and scraping sides and bottom of bowl frequently. Add milk; beat until light and fluffy. Remove half the frosting and place in medium bowl. Add green food color; mix until evenly blended. Spoon into pastry bag fitted with grass decorating tip. Set aside. Remove half the remaining frosting into small bowl. Add red food color; mix until light pink. Spoon into another pastry bag.
  4. Using pink frosting, pipe three toes and padding on each bunny foot. Once frosting has set (about 1 hour) gently press down on pink frosting to create smoother look.
  5. To assemble cupcakes: Pipe green frosting onto each cupcake in series of short motions to create individual grass spots. Cover top of each cupcake completely.
  6. To make bunny butts: Place cut sides of marshmallow halves onto each frosted cupcake, leaving room for bunny feet. Shape remaining white frosting into dime-sized balls then roll with white sprinkles to cover. Pipe small drop of remaining pink or white frosting onto top of each marshmallow. Press bunny tail on top.
  7. Place both bunny feet against base of marshmallow with toes facing down.

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Lemon Dill Slow Cooker Carrots

Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 3-4 hours
Servings: 6

  • Nonstick cooking spray
  • 2          pounds carrots, peeled and cut into 1/2-1-inch chunks
  • 2          tablespoons water
  • 1/2       teaspoon salt
  • 2          tablespoons olive oil
  • 2          teaspoons McCormick Dill Weed
  • 2          teaspoons McCormick Pure Lemon Extract
  • 2          teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • teaspoon white wine vinegar
  1. Spray inside of 4-quart slow cooker with nonstick cooking spray. Add carrots, water and salt; toss to coat. Cover.
  2. Cook on high 3-4 hours, or until tender.
  3. In small bowl, mix olive oil, dill weed, lemon extract, Dijon mustard and vinegar. Stir into cooked carrots in slow cooker before serving.

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Rack of Lamb with Quinoa-Hazelnut Crust and Mint Pesto

Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 40 minutes
Servings: 6

  • 2          tablespoons red quinoa
  • 2          tablespoons white quinoa
  • 1/2       cup water
  • 1/4       cup, plus 1 tablespoon, finely chopped toasted hazelnuts, divided
  • 2          racks of lamb, about 1 pound each
  • 3          tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 1 1/8    teaspoons McCormick Gourmet Sicilian Sea Salt, divided
  • 1/4       teaspoon McCormick Gourmet Organic Black Pepper
  • 2          teaspoons lemon juice
  • 2          tablespoons McCormick Gourmet Organic Mint
  • 1/8       teaspoon McCormick Gourmet Organic Garlic Powder
  • cup plain Greek yogurt
  1. Rinse quinoa; drain well. In small saucepan over medium-high heat, bring quinoa and water to boil. Reduce heat to low; cover and simmer 13 minutes, or until liquid is absorbed, stirring occasionally. Spread cooked quinoa on baking sheet to cool. Stir in 1/4 cup hazelnuts. Set aside.
  2. Heat oven to 450° F. Brush racks of lamb lightly with 1 teaspoon oil. Sprinkle with 1 teaspoon sea salt and pepper. Coat lamb with quinoa mixture, pressing firmly to adhere. Place lamb on roasting rack in foil-lined, shallow roasting pan. Drizzle with 2 teaspoons oil.
  3. Roast 20-25 minutes, or until desired doneness.
  4. To make Mint Pesto: In small bowl, mix remaining oil, remaining hazelnuts, lemon juice, mint, garlic powder and remaining sea salt until well blended. Stir 1 teaspoon pesto into yogurt.
  5. To serve: Carve lamb into chops. Drizzle with remaining pesto. Serve with yogurt sauce.

Electric Pressure Cooker Lamb

Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 48 minutes
Servings: 12

  • 1          tablespoon McCormick Garlic Powder
  • 1          tablespoon McCormick crushed Rosemary Leaves
  • 2          teaspoons McCormick Sea Salt
  • 1          teaspoon McCormick Thyme Leaves
  • 1/2       teaspoon ground McCormick Black Pepper
  • 2          tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1          semi-boneless leg of lamb (about 4 pounds)
  • 1          cup Kitchen Basics Original Chicken Stock
  • 1/2       cup dry white wine
  • 2          medium carrots, peeled and cut into 2-inch chunks
  • 1          medium yellow onion, cut into wedges
  • 1/4       cup water
  • tablespoons cornstarch
  1. In small bowl, mix garlic powder, rosemary, sea salt, thyme and black pepper. Set aside.
  2. In electric pressure cooker, heat oil on saute setting until simmering. Sprinkle half the seasoning mixture evenly over lamb. Place lamb in pressure cooker. Cook 8-10 minutes, or until browned on all sides, turning occasionally. Add stock, wine and remaining seasoning mixture to pressure cooker. Arrange carrots and onion around lamb. Close lid.
  3. Cook 25 minutes on high pressure. Once complete, allow pressure to release naturally with vent closed 15 minutes. Vent to release remaining pressure; remove lid. Remove lamb and vegetables from pressure cooker; set aside and keep warm.
  4. Set pressure cooker to saute. Cook, uncovered, until liquid is reduced by about half, about 5-10 minutes. In small bowl, mix water and cornstarch. Stir into pressure cooker with wire whisk. Cook, stirring occasionally, 1-2 minutes, or until thickened. Serve lamb and vegetables with gravy.

Source: McCormick

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