Monthly Archives: February 2010

Mary’s Memo #2150

YEAH! SPRING IS JUST A MONTH AWAY!

To celebrate, this memo is going in several directions. There are many reasons why I enjoy my work at the Bryan Chief and one of them is an opportunity to talk personally with memo readers. They may have a question for me such as what is a Minneola? Also called a Tangelo, I can tell them it’s a cross between a tangerine and a grapefruit. It peels like a tangerine and is very juicy like grapefruit.



Memo readers lose recipes like recently when a customer asked about George Dykhuizen’s Baked Pork Loin with Mustard Sauce. I remembered the recipe and that it won first prize in a Bryan Times Recipe Contest in 1979. That known I started looking in memos from 1979 into the early 80s and there it was on the April 5, 1982 memo! So for the lady who asked me and for all “other white meat” fans, here it is!.



GEORGE DYKHUISEN’S BAKED PORK LOIN WITH MUSTARD SAUCE

3 pound center cut pork loin, boned but not rolled (order ahead)
¼ cup soy sauce
¼ cup bourbon
2 tablespoons packed light brown sugar
Mustard Sauce:
1/3 cup sour cream
1/3 cup Hellmann’s Light Mayonnaise
1 tablespoon dry mustard
1½ teaspoons white wine vinegar
2 tablespoons chopped scallions





Marinate meat in soy sauce, bourbon and brown sugar mixture in oblong glass dish. Refrigerate for several hours, turning frequently. Remove from marinade and bake in shallow baking pan in preheated 325oF, basting frequently with marinade until meat thermometer registers 150oF, about 1½ hours. Cut in thin diagonal slices and serve with Mustard Sauce. To make sauce, combine sour cream, mayonnaise, dry mustard, vinegar and scallions.

Finally, I watch what shoppers are buying because it helps me focus on recipes they’ll actually use. Nowadays, they are more price conscious than at any time since I’ve done the memo and I pay attention to cost per serving.




MY NEW PET PEEVE

In December I told you that one of the best buys in chip aisle was the Frito Lays 14-ounce bag of Santitas Authentic Mexican Chips for $2.00. They’re still $2.00 but chips have been reduced an ounce to 13. I ended up buying a different Frito Lay tortilla chip that had less sodium, something I’m also watching. I’m sure we haven’t seen an end to this happening but I do resent the fact that food companies don’t think we know what’s going on!
Another example of paying the same or more for less is toilet paper. Rolls have a fraction of the tissue they formerly did. I also bought Kraft reduced- fat shredded sharp Cheddar cheese the other day and instead of being an 8-ounce package it weighs only 7 ounces now. You may not agree with me but I wish grocery manufacturers would keep the size or weight the same and raise the price if it’s necessary.



TIPS FOR SAFER SALADS


Raw leafy greens, organic or regular, should be washed again, even though package says they’re pre-washed and ready-to-eat. One method of washing: immerse loose greens in a large pot of cool water and allow a minute or two for debris to sink to the bottom. Then put the greens in a colander and wash them under running water. A salad spinner is a convenience, or you can pat the greens dry with a clean cloth or paper towel.

Source: University of California at Berkeley Wellness Letter, February 2010.




BETTER LATE THAN NEVER!


I may be a month late with Ground Hog Soup but being a big fan of hearty soups, this has a lot to offer and you’re likely to have most of the ingredients on hand to make it. When we’re supposed to be eating more beans and lentils and less meat this soup is the perfect prescription for healthy eating!





GROUND HOG SOUP

fresh bulk sausage
1 large onion, chopped
1 28-ounce can diced tomatoes
1 quart water
1 cup diced potatoes with or without peeling
½ green bell pepper, chopped
1 bay leaf
¾ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon pepper
1 garlic clove, minced (or 1/8 teaspoon garlic powder)
½ teaspoon thyme
2 16-ounce cans light kidney beans, drained and rinsed (I use Bush brand)





Brown sausage and onion together in large saucepan over medium heat. Drain fat. Add remaining ingredients with exception of kidney beans. Cover and simmer for about 2 hours; add kidney beans the last 30 minutes of cooking. Remove bay leaf before serving. Recipe serves 5.





PS: I have no idea how many calls about food that I have taken through the years but when I do get questions I try to find the answer or refer them to someone more qualified than I am. This morning a caller asked me why diabetics are to use cake flour instead of all purpose flour and I referred her to the American Diabetes Association at 1-800-342-2383. After she hung up I was curious to know the answer and called the 1-800 number myself. As it turned out, the registered dietitian on the phone said he had just talked to the lady I advised to call them. If you are wondering about cake flour and diabetics, the ADA doesn’t make a distinction between the two flours. Unlike years ago when diabetics eliminated so many foods from their diet, the ADA strives to keep diets as normal as possible.
Download PDF of Memo #2150

Mary’s Memo #2149

UNFINISHED BUSINESS

It’s been called to my attention that sugar is missing in the recipe for Apple Fritters on the January 11th memo. Add to the list of ingredients 1 tablespoon of sugar.



Also, on the Best Recipes of 2009 memo, when to add the broccoli is missing from the Broccoli-Cheddar Soup. It’s added when the potatoes are almost tender and cooked about 5 minutes or until florets are crisp-tender.



ASH WEDNESDAY IS FEBUARY 17th

Focus this week is on meatless choices. I’ve made a concentrated effort to eat less meat generally and I don’t miss it as much as I formally did. I like the individual portions of salmon and tilapia that are available at Chief and Rays. Canned-in-water tuna is another option. Eat it in salads, casseroles, creamed and served on toast or a baked potato. Introduced to tuna chop suey at St. Joseph College in Rensselaer, IN, before I was married, I liked it well enough to serve to our family during Lent. Take any recipe for chop suey and replace the meat with tuna. That’s all there is to it.



Although I’m not a vegetarian, in an effort to cut down on meat consumption I sometimes make a meal on two or three vegetable dishes. One that comes to mind is Baked Spicy Rice, a Southern Living recipe that I discovered in the 90s.



BAKED SPICY RICE

1 cup long grain rice
2 10-ounce cans Rotel brand tomatoes with green chilies, undrained
1 cup water
1 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup drained pimiento stuffed olives, sliced in half
¼ cup light olive oil
½ cup chopped onion
1 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese




Combine all ingredients in a shallow 2-quart dish. Bake, covered, in preheated 325oF oven for about 45 minutes or until liquid is absorbed and rice is tender. Recipe makes 6 servings.

Source: Adapted from Southern Living magazine recipe, May 1996.



MORE ON VEGETARIAN DIETS

Vegetarians have a lower mortality risk from ischemic disease as well as lower LDL “bad” cholesterol, lower blood pressure, lower rates of hypertension and type-2 diabetes, lower body mass index and lower overall cancer rates. These benefits are attributed to lower intakes of saturated fat and cholesterol and to higher intakes of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, nuts, soy products, fiber and phytochemicals in plant foods.
The American Dietetic Association cautions, however, that the variety of dietary practices among vegetarians requires assessment of individual diets by food and nutrition professionals to ensure dietary needs are met. In vegan diets, for example, protein needs might be higher than the USDA’s recommended dietary allowance to offset dietary deficiencies.
Source: Duke Medicine HealthNews, January 2010.


Source: Duke Medicine HealthNews, January 2010.


NUTS TO YOU!


I have a copy of 101 Foods That Could Save Your Life by David Grotto, RD, LDN, a Bantam Books paperback published in 2008. Almonds, peanuts, pecans, pistachios and walnuts are among the 101 foods included and I have all of them in the refrigerator or freezer most of the time. The United States provides 88% of worldwide almonds. As for pecans, 88% of the world supply is grown in the US. Although the United States and Iran compete as the world’s largest producers of pistachios, Turkish and California pistachios are the predominant pistachios available here because of the high tariff imposed on Iranian pistachios. Finally, the main producers of walnuts are China, the US, Turkey, Romania, Iran and France with 99% of English walnuts grown in California. All are heart-healthy choices and pistachios are the highest tree nut source of lutein, known to help prevent macular degeneration. Although I bought the paperback at a Dorothy Lane Market in Dayton, I am sure it’s available from Amazon.com.





TRANS-FAT FREE


I do avoid eating foods with Trans fats and that includes biscuits made with solid vegetable shortening like Crisco. So recently when I wanted a drop biscuit to serve with stew the quickest way to find a suitable one was on the computer and up came E-Z Biscuits from allrecipes.com. made with melted butter. I also added ½ cup shredded sharp Cheddar cheese to the batter.





E-Z DROP BISCUITS

2 cups sugar unsifted, all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
2 teaspoons granulated sugar
½ teaspoon cream of tartar
1 cup milk (whatever kind you have in the refrigerator)
¼ teaspoon salt
½ cup butter, melted
½ cup shredded sharp Cheddar cheese




Preheat oven to 400F. In large bowl, combine flour, baking powder, sugar, cream of tartar and salt. Stir in butter, milk and cheese just until moistened. Drop by tablespoon (I used the larger Pampered Chef scoop) onto parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Bake until golden around the edges, about 10 to 12 minutes. Check bottom of biscuit at 10 minutes.
Recipe makes 1 dozen. Refrigerate leftovers. Download PDF of Memo #2149

Mary’s Memo #2148

IT'S THE YEAR OF THE TIGER

The Chinese New Year and Valentine's Day share the same date in 2010. With the exception of Japan, China and all of Southeast Asia celebrate the Chinese New Year. The date changes from year to year because it's a combination of the lunar and solar calendar and occurs on the second moon after the winter solstice. Last year the Chinese New Year fell on January 26.



Celebrations probably evolved from a desire to celebrate the end of winter and rebirth that comes with spring. Today it's about family reunions and wishing everyone good fortune in the coming year.



Japan followed the lunar calendar until the middle of the 19th century but after the Meiji Restoration in 1868, they adopted the Gregorian calendar and since that time celebrate the New Year on January 1st.



Like we do housecleaning in the spring, the Chinese do the same by getting rid of "old dirt" before their new year starts. In addition to cleaning families spend time buying gifts and cooking special foods for the celebration.



From the Campbell's Kitchen web site, Asian Tomato Beef sounded appropriate for this week's memo. I could almost taste the dish just reading the ingredients. After testing the recipes and serving it to friends, I'm suggesting a few ways to make it even better. To kick it up a notch, depending on your taste, add 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon of crushed red pepper to the sauce. The recipe called for 1 1/2 teaspoons garlic powder. Since 1/8 teaspoon is the same as a clove of garlic I only added 1 teaspoon. My round steak was top of the round and next time I will brown the strips before I add them to the slow cooker because browning seals in the juices. Original recipe said to cook florets 15 minutes on high. I had cut mine too small so they were overcooked instead of crisp-cooked and bright green. I also thickened the sauce with 2 tablespoons Minute Tapioca when I added the broccoli. That said here's my version:



ASIAN TOMATO BEEF


2 cans Campbell's Condensed Tomato Soup
1/3 cup soy sauce (can be reduced sodium kind)
1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper, depending on your taste
3 1/4 pounds boneless beef round steak, trimmed of fat, cut into strips and browned in small batches in a nonstick skillet sprayed with Pam
6 cups broccoli florets cut in medium size pieces
2 tablespoons Minute Tapioca
Hot cooked rice
Stir together in a 3 1/2 to 4-quart slow cooker the tomato soup, soy sauce, vinegar, garlic powder, black pepper and crushed red pepper. Add browned meat strips and stir again. Cover and cook on low 7 to 8 hours or until meat is fork tender. Increase the heat to high and add broccoli. Cover and cook until vegetable is crisp tender, about l0 minutes. Serve over rice. Recipe makes 8 servings.

Source: Adapted from www.campbellskitchen.com recipe.



A BE MY VALENTINE RECIPE

Relatives and friends know that I am always looking for new recipes to try and Jill Thurmond (mother of Gabriel, Noah and Hannah Thaman) from Bradenton, FL, called with a recipe for Cocoa Toffee Cookies just before Christmas. The list of ingredients includes 1 cup of cocoa so the cookies have a rich chocolate taste .... perfect to make for the Valentine in your life. Not only is chocolate a favorite flavor in America but for centuries it's been embraced by many cultures for legendary benefits such as strength, health and passion. The Nielson Company predicts that this week 58 billion pounds of chocolate will be sold with the most purchases made on the February 13th. Count on Chief and Rays for all your chocolate candy and the ingredients for this week's recipe.



COCOA TOFFEE COOKIES

1 cup butter, softened
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
2 cups unsifted all purpose flour
1 cup cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 8-ounce packages Heath English Toffee Bits

Cream butter and sugar together. Add eggs and blend thoroughly. Sift dry ingredients together. Combine with creamed mixture. Fold in Heath Toffee Bits. Drop by teaspoonfuls about 2 inches apart onto parchment paper-lined baking sheets. Bake in preheated 350F oven for 12 to 15 minutes (check at minimum time). Do not over-bake. Cool on rack. Recipe makes about 4 dozen. Source: Jill Thurmond, Bradenton FL. PS Chocolate, especially the dark variety, is good for humans but not our pets. It contains a stimulant called theobromine which pets can't digest. If a pet becomes ill after eating chocolate take it to a veterinarian immediately. Download PDF of Memo #2148

Mary’s Memo #2147

ARE YOU READY FOR THE SUPER BOWL?

About the only thing that interests me about Super Bowl Sunday is helping you feed the football fans in your life. When we were a family of six I always made Zippy Beef-Olive Spread (in my cookbook) on Super Bowl Sunday and it remains a family favorite. In fact I eat it as a sandwich filling, on crackers, toast or even a baked potato. Just in case you’ve never made it here it is one more time.





ZIPPY BEEF-OLIVE SPREAD

1 teaspoon dry minced onion
1 tablespoon dry sherry
1 8-ounce package cream cheese (can be reduced-fat or fat-free or a combination of each)
2 tablespoons light mayonnaise
2 ½-ounce jar dried beef, finely snipped
¼ cup sliced pimento-stuffed olives




Soften minced onion in sherry. Blend cream cheese with mayonnaise and onion-sherry mixture. Stir in dried beef and sliced olives. Spread can also be made in a food processor.

Last year I was able to purchase the latest (8th) edition of Favorite Recipes of the Purdue University Residence Halls. Students living in the residence halls all four years are given a copy of the cookbook when they graduate. As students’ preferences, lifestyles and experiences change, so do the recipes. I had no complaints about the food I ate in the Purdue residence halls and Sunday meals were outstanding. But in the old days our main meal or dinner was served by waiters. Now it’s self-serve at most colleges and universities.
One of the student favorites in the 8th edition cookbook was Guacamole Layer Salad. It was tricky spreading sour cream over the guacamole dip and I even checked with Purdue to make sure they meant dip instead of commercial guacamole and they did mean dip (Chief and Rays carry Marzetti brand). I can tell you that tasters at the Bryan Chief loved it! The recipe said to assemble the ingredients on a platter but like my sister Ann’s recipe for Texas Taco Dip, I did it in a 9x13 glass baking dish.




GUACAMOLE LAYER SALAD


16-ounce can refried beans (I used fat-free kind)
1½ teaspoons taco seasoning
12 ounce carton guacamole dip
8-ounces (1 cup) sour cream (I used reduced-fat kind)
2/3 cups sliced ripe olives, drained
1 1/3 cups fresh diced tomatoes
1¼ cups shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
2/3 cup chopped green onions



Whip beans and taco seasoning until they are a smooth paste.
Spread beans on platter or 9x13-inch glass dish. Spoon Guacamole dip over refried beans. Stir sour cream until smooth and carefully spread over guacamole dip. Continue to layer with olives, tomatoes, cheese and green onions. Chill. Serve with tortilla chips. Recipe makes 20 servings.


Source: 8th edition of Favorite Recipes of the Purdue University Residences.



SPEAKING OF RECIPES

I did make Campbell’s Soup’s Sausage & Escarole Soup recently with only 279 calories per serving. Since escarole is not usually available in the produce department at Chief and Rays, I replaced it with chopped fresh spinach. Because I thought the soup was too thick with only 6 cups of chicken broth, I used a 32-ounce container plus 2 14-ounce cans of chicken broth without MSG. Personally I didn’t think it needed salt. Mary Ann suggested some Italian seasoning.



SAUSAGE & SPINACH SOUP


1 cup uncooked navy beans
1 pound sweet Italian sausage, casing removed (it took 5 of 6 links in package)
1 large onion, thinly sliced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 32-ounce carton plus 2 14-ounce cans chicken broth without MSG
8 cups fresh spinach, washed, spun dry and chopped
Grated Parmesan cheese
Freshly ground pepper
.



Soak beans according to package directions. Drain. Cook sausage in 6-quart Dutch oven over medium heat until sausage is well browned, stirring frequently to separate meat. Remove from pan with a slotted spoon. Add onion and garlic and cook for 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Stir in broth and beans. Bring to a boil; reduce heat, cover and cook until beans are tender (about 1½ hours). Return sausage to pot and add spinach. Cover and cook for 5 minutes or until the spinach is just wilted. Serve with Parmesan cheese and fresh ground pepper. Recipe makes 6 servings.

Source: Adapted from Campbell’s Soup recipe.


PS



Log onto the Campbell’s Kitchen website for more good recipes and information.

Download PDF of Memo #2147