(Family Features) Getting the whole family around the dinner table every evening can be hard. Feeding your family meals that incorporate high-quality ingredients and are also delicious can be even harder. Sometimes, though, that special ingredient you’re looking for can already be in your pantry.
Consider including bursts of flavor from an ingredient such as California Ripe Olives at your next family meal and take into account the versatility and taste made possible by the hard-working farm families who grow them.
Grown by his family for more than a decade, Rick Benson vividly remembers the day he convinced his father the next crop at Benson Farms should be California Ripe Olives, which are both heat- and salt-tolerant.
That was 12 years ago, and the Benson family has grown olives ever since. Though they are seasoned farmers, the Benson family members are new to olives, and they have brought an innovative way of harvesting to the decades old industry.
While California Ripe Olives remain a primarily hand-harvested crop, the Bensons’ young grove was planted with the intention of harvesting mechanically. As newer olive groves are planted, mechanical harvesting is slowly being implemented.
“It’s a labor of love,” Benson said. “We view olives as our crop for the next generation.”
Whether you’re enjoying olives as a snack or using them in a new dish like this favorite recipe from a California Ripe Olive-growing family, consider the hundreds of farming families behind each can of olives.
Learn more about multi-generational farming families like the Bensons and find more recipes at calolive.org.
Rustic Chicken with Ripe Olives
Recipe courtesy of Vincent Richutti, a third-generation California Ripe Olive grower
Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 30-35 minutes
- 1/2 cup mixed, porcini or chanterelle dried mushrooms
- 2 teaspoons fennel seeds
- 1 1/2 teaspoons dried basil
- 1 1/2 teaspoons sea salt
- 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 1 1/2 pounds baby yellow potatoes, halved
- 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
- 4 small boneless, skinless chicken breasts
- 1 1/2 cups California Black and Green Ripe Olives
- 1/4 cup chicken broth
- 1/4 cup white wine
- 1 lemon, thinly sliced and seeds removed
- Heat oven to 425° F.
- In small food processor, pulse mushrooms, fennel seeds, basil, salt and red pepper flakes until mixture is finely chopped and almost powder-like.
- Place potatoes on large, shallow-rimmed baking sheet and drizzle with 2 tablespoons olive oil; toss to coat. Sprinkle with half the mushroom mixture and toss lightly.
- Brush chicken with remaining olive oil and sprinkle both sides with remaining mushroom mixture.
- Nestle chicken and olives into potatoes. Drizzle with broth and wine, and top with lemon slices.
- Roast 30-35 minutes, or until chicken and potatoes are cooked through.
- Remove lemon slices before serving.
Source: California Olive Committee
(Family Features) Whether it’s a semi-full bottle of crisp white or a half-empty bottle of leftover red, there are creative ways to make the most of unused wine after all the holiday parties come to an end.
The World Wine Guys and Deutsch Family Wine & Spirits offer these ideas to help you put your leftover wine to good use this holiday season:
Make Red Wine Vinegar
Impress your guests by adding homemade red wine vinegar to your next dish. Add one part raw vinegar to two parts leftover red wine then store your mixture in a dark, cool place. Monitor periodically and keep testing until you get the desired vinegar smell, strain and refrigerate. Use as desired on salads and in homemade sauces and marinades.
Create Wine Ice Cubes
If you can't use your leftover white wine right away, pour the remaining liquid into ice trays and freeze. Next time you’re enjoying a glass, add some of the cubes to your wine to keep it cold. This trick can also work with a rosé or sparkling wine like Josh Cellars California Rosé or Enza Prosecco. Using the frozen wine cubes instead of ice can prevent what you pour from becoming too watered down.
Both red and white wines can be used in a variety of different dishes from appetizers to desserts. Keep in mind that open bottles should be used within 2-3 days, so look to use your leftovers sooner rather than later. Try adding wine to a seasonal side dish like these White Wine Glazed Carrots. It can also be used as a savory addition to main courses such as this classic Red Wine Tomato Sauce.
For more information on wines for the holidays, visit WineFix.com.
White Wine Glazed Carrots
Recipe courtesy of Deutsch Family and the World Wine Guys, authors of "Red Wine "
- 6 medium carrots, halved lengthwise and cut into 2-inch pieces
- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 1/2 cups water
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 2 tablespoons Barone Fini Pinot Grigio
- salt, to taste
- pepper, to taste
- In large skillet, combine carrots and olive oil; add water. Cook over medium-high heat until carrots are tender. Add honey and white wine; cook and stir 2 minutes until carrots are glazed.
- Add salt and pepper, to taste.
Red Wine Tomato Sauce
Recipe courtesy of Deutsch Family and the World Wine Guys, authors of "Red Wine"
- 1 teaspoon olive oil
- 1 medium onion, finely chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 can whole, peeled tomatoes
- 1/8 cup Villa Pozzi Nero D’Avola
- 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
- 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon dried sea salt
- 1/2 teaspoon oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon thyme
- 1/2 teaspoon basil
- In medium-size pot, heat olive oil. Add onion and saute 4 minutes then add minced garlic and saute 1 minute.
- Add tomatoes, wine, vinegar, red pepper, sea salt, oregano, thyme and basil; reduce heat and simmer about 40 minutes.
Source: Deutsch Family Wine & Spirits
(Family Features) When your taste buds can’t settle on just one flavor, a fusion dish may be just the answer. Fusion dishes combine some of the best ethnic culinary traditions from around the world, and Asian influences are among the most popular building blocks for fusion cuisine.
One secret to achieving great fusion dishes is the use of cooking wines. For many chefs and home cooks alike, cooking wine is a go-to cooking essential because it can be used in everyday meals. With its versatile array of uses, an option like Holland House®, a line of flavor-enhancing, premium cooking wines, can boost any dish with one of five flavors including Marsala, Sherry, White, Red and White with Lemon.
In addition to these featured dishes, you can find more quick tips for boosting the flavor of your everyday meals on the label of each bottle and explore more recipes at HollandHouseFlavors.com.
Sweet and Spicy Korean-Chinese Fusion Cauliflower Bites
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 20 minutes
Servings: 4, about 1 1/2 cups per portion
- 6 cups fresh cauliflower florets
- 2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 cup Holland House Sherry Cooking Wine
- 1/4 cup honey
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon white vinegar
- 2 teaspoons cornstarch
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 1 small fresh yellow onion, finely chopped
- 1 tablespoon minced fresh garlic
- 1 tablespoon Korean-style chili flakes
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh green onions
- 1 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds
- Heat oven to 400° F.
- In large bowl, toss cauliflower, sesame oil and salt until well coated. Arrange on nonstick baking sheet. Bake 10-12 minutes, or until golden brown and tender.
- In small bowl, whisk cooking wine, honey, soy sauce, vinegar and cornstarch until well blended; set aside.
- In large, nonstick skillet, heat vegetable oil over medium-high heat. Add yellow onions and garlic; cook 2-3 minutes, or until golden brown, stirring frequently. Remove from heat. Stir in chili flakes and wine mixture.
- Return pan to stove and adjust to medium heat. Bring to simmer, stirring constantly. Continue cooking and stirring 1-2 minutes, or until thickened. Add cooked cauliflower; stir gently to coat.
- Transfer cauliflower to serving dish. Top with green onions and sesame seeds.
Tips: The sauce mixture can also be used on chicken wings or grilled pork chops. In place of Korean-style chili flakes, use 1 teaspoon regular crushed red pepper flakes or 1 tablespoon Aleppo pepper.
Lettuce-Wrapped Korean Short Ribs
Prep time: 10 minutes, plus marinating
Cook time: 4 minutes
Servings: 4, about 6 ounces (pre-cooked) per portion
- 3 tablespoons packed dark brown sugar, divided
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
- 1 1/2 pounds thinly sliced, boneless beef short ribs
- 1 cup Holland House Marsala Cooking Wine
- 6 tablespoons toasted sesame oil
- 1/4 cup roasted garlic paste
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 1/2 cup chopped green onions, divided
- 1 teaspoon cornstarch
- 1 head fresh romaine lettuce, separated into large leaves
- 1/2 cup sliced fresh red radishes
- 1/2 cup shredded fresh carrots dipping sauce
- In small bowl, combine 2 tablespoons brown sugar, salt, black pepper and red pepper flakes. Sprinkle evenly over short rib slices, gently rubbing into both sides. Place in re-sealable plastic bag.
- In bowl, whisk cooking wine, sesame oil, garlic paste, soy sauce and remaining brown sugar. Pour half of mixture into bag with meat and add 1/4 cup green onions. To marinate, refrigerate at least 1 hour, or up to 12 hours.
- In small saucepan, whisk remaining wine mixture and cornstarch until smooth. Bring to simmer over medium heat, whisking constantly. Cook 1 minute, or until thickened, stirring constantly. Set aside until cool. Stir in 2 tablespoons green onions.
- Heat grill to medium-high.
- Remove ribs from marinade, allowing excess to drip off. Discard marinade. Grill 1-2 minutes on each side, or until golden brown and cooked through.
- Cut ribs into 1-inch pieces. Serve with remaining green onions, lettuce, radishes, carrots and warm dipping sauce.
Tips: For fusion tacos, substitute corn or flour tortillas for lettuce leaves. In place of garlic paste, 2 tablespoons minced garlic can be substituted.
Sizzling Asian Vegetable Fried Rice with Savory White Wine Glaze
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 8 minutes
Servings: 4-6, about 1 cup per portion
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 1 tablespoon minced fresh garlic
- 1/2 cup fresh chopped yellow onions
- 1 cup fresh small white mushrooms, quartered
- 1/2 cup chopped fresh carrots
- 1/2 cup chopped fresh zucchini
- 1/2 cup chopped fresh red bell peppers
- 1/2 cup chopped fresh yellow bell peppers
- 3 cups cold, cooked, long-grain white rice
- 1/2 cup Holland House White Cooking Wine
- 2 tablespoons oyster sauce
- 1/2 cup fresh green onions, sliced 1/4-inch thick
- 2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
- Heat heavy-bottomed, nonstick skillet over high heat. Add vegetable oil, garlic and onions. Stir-fry 1-2 minutes, or until lightly browned. Add mushrooms, carrots, zucchini, red bell peppers and yellow bell peppers; stir-fry 3 minutes. Add rice; stir-fry 3 minutes.
- Add cooking wine; stir-fry 2 minutes, or until dry. Add oyster sauce; stir-fry 2 minutes. Remove from heat. Stir in green onions, sesame oil and black pepper. Transfer to dish or bowl and serve.
Tip: To turn into a main course, add cooked beef, chicken or pork and serve topped with a fried egg.
Source: Holland House
Savory Honey Mustard Poached Pears and Figs
Submitted by Pamela V.
Servings: 4 to 6
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
- 2 cups College Inn® Chicken Broth
- 1 cup dry white wine
- 1 cup water
- 1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
- 3 tablespoons honey, divided
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 2 bay leaves
- 4 pears (firm variety such as Bosc), peeled, halved and cored
- 6 ounces dried figs, stems removed
- 1/2 cup chopped hazelnuts
- 1/2 cup crumbled blue cheese or goat cheese
- Trace diameter of large saucepan onto parchment paper. Cut out and set aside.
- Combine broth, white wine, water, mustard, 2 tablespoons honey, lemon juice and bay leaves in large saucepan. Bring to a boil, whisking occasionally. Reduce heat to low and simmer 5 minutes.
- Add pears, core-side-up, and figs; cover with vented parchment paper so pears stay fully submerged.
- Simmer 20 minutes until pears are fork-tender.
- Toast hazelnuts in small, non-stick sauté pan over medium high heat, about 2 minutes or until fragrant, stirring constantly. Quickly remove nuts from pan onto a separate plate.
- To serve, remove pears from poaching liquid and place onto individual salad plates. Drizzle with remaining 1 tablespoon honey and sprinkle with nuts and cheese.
Source: College Inn
(Family Features) Holiday entertaining is all about food, wine and quality time with family and friends. This year, try a new approach to holiday get-togethers by hosting an hors d’oeuvres party.
Skip the hassle of preparing a full meal by serving a number of small bites, dips and spreads for your guests to enjoy. Most hors d’oeuvres can be prepared ahead of time so you can spend more time with your guests instead of in the kitchen, making it easy to entertain flawlessly.
The best part is you don’t have to break the bank to host a fabulous holiday gathering. By switching from national name brands to a grocer like ALDI, party essentials and seasonal must-haves, such as holiday gifts and baking necessities, can be as much as 50 percent less. Manufactured by many of the nation’s leading food producers, these exclusive brand items often meet or exceed the quality and taste of the national name brands.
Try these hors d’oeuvre serving tips from food stylist and loyal ALDI shopper Janice Stahl:
- Rethink the regular: Surprise guests and get creative with classic recipes by changing the presentation. Square pizza bites, circular tea sandwiches or star-shaped fruit make entertaining fun.
- Keep hors d’oeuvres simple: Serve foods that are bite-sized and easy to pick up. Try skewers to create festive kabobs, which are perfect for nibbling.
- Presentation is everything: Experiment with serving pieces like vases, champagne glasses or appetizer cups that add special interest to bite-sized snacks from chips and dip to shrimp cocktail.
With these simple tips and recipes, you’ll be ready to throw a festive holiday hors d’oeuvres party that’s easy and affordable. Visit www.aldi.us for more entertaining ideas.
Cranberry Shrimp Ceviche Cups
$0.58 per serving at ALDI
Recipe courtesy of Chef Alyssa, ALDI Test Kitchen
Prep time: 20 minutes, plus 1 hour to chill
Cook time: 3 minutes
Yields: 16 ceviche cups
- 1 1/2 teaspoons iodized salt, divided
- 16 ounces medium raw shrimp, thawed
- 1 cup dried cranberries
- 1/2 red onion, roughly chopped
- 1/2 cup fresh parsley
- 1/2 jalapeno, roughly chopped
- 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
- 1/4 cup fresh lime juice
- 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper or ground black pepper
- 1 teaspoon oregano
- 16 ounces tortilla chips
- 2 limes cut into wedges
- Fresh cranberries, optional
- Bring medium pot of water to a boil. Season with 1 teaspoon salt.
- Add shrimp and cook for 3 minutes. Immediately plunge cooked shrimp into ice water bath. Peel shrimp and place in flat dish.
- In food processor, combine cranberries, red onion, parsley and jalapeno. Pulse until finely chopped.
- Add cranberry mixture to shrimp.
- Add lemon juice, lime juice, remaining salt, crushed red pepper and oregano. Stir to combine ingredients thoroughly.
- Refrigerate for 1 hour.
- To assemble, spoon ceviche, about 4 to 5 shrimp each, into small clear cups or glasses. Garnish with tortilla chips and lime wedges.
Pistachio Lemon Truffles
$0.43 per serving at ALDI
Recipe courtesy of Chef Michelle, ALDI Test Kitchen
Prep time: 30 minutes, plus 1 hour to chill
Cook time: 30 minutes, plus 1 hour to chill
Yields: 24 truffles
- 1 1/4 cups pistachios, shelled
- 8 ounces cream cheese
- 4 ounces plain goat cheese
- 3/4 cup dried mixed berries, chopped
- 1/2 teaspoon iodized salt
- 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
- 4 teaspoons finely chopped lemon zest
- Pinch ground black pepper
- Roughly chop pistachios, place in bowl.
- With electric mixer, cream together remaining ingredients. Refrigerate for 1 hour.
- Scoop tablespoon size balls of cheese mixture and roll in pistachios to coat.
- To serve, sprinkle platter with remaining pistachios and place truffles on top. Serve with crackers.
A signature drink is a must at any holiday soiree. Get creative by offering guests a specialty cocktail that matches the color scheme for the event. An avid party hostess, food stylist Janice Stahl makes the occasion special by pairing white wine with a splash of cranberry-pomegranate juice, garnished with fresh fruit or herbs. Giving your signature drink an original name to reflect your personality is an added touch your guests will love. For a lasting impression, hand out recipe cards of your signature drink as party favors.
$0.58 per serving at ALDI
Recipe courtesy of ALDI Food Stylist, Janice Stahl
- Sugar for glass rim
- 1/2 cup white wine
- 1/2 cup cranberry- pomegranate juice
- 1 tablespoon fresh cranberries
- Fresh fruit for garnish
- Dip rim of glass in sugar.
- Pour wine and juice into glass, stirring to combine.
- Drop in cranberries, along with any additional fruit desired. Serve immediately.