Monthly Archives: August 2010

Mary’s Memo #2177


I like it when wives of candidates “say it with recipes.” Fran DeWine’s 11th cook booklet is now available during husband Mike DeWine’s campaign to be Attorney General of Ohio. Fran DeWine’s Family Favorites is written and prepared by Fran DeWine with illustrations by her daughters and granddaughters. As the mother of eight and now grandmother of 13, Fran DeWine loves to cook and food seems to be the center of their family gatherings.

One of the new recipes in the 11th edition is Chicken Tortilla Soup, a good choice with fall less than a month away. I’ve made it and like all of her recipes, the soup is delicious!


Sauté together:

2 medium onions, diced
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons olive oil Add and sauté for 1 minute:
2 teaspoons oregano
1 tablespoons chili powder Add:
(2) 28-ounce cans crushed tomatoes
(1) 16-ounce package frozen corn
(1 or 2) 4-ounce cans chopped green chilies
(2) 15-ounce cans black beans
1 quart chicken broth
4 cups chopped cooked chicken

Bring to a boil. Simmer about 20 minutes. Garnish with chopped fresh cilantro and tortilla chips (fry some thin strips of corn tortillas for a nice presentation). Garnish with sour cream if you like.

Also from the cookbook shelf we have Not Your Mother’s Fondue by Hallie Harron; Harvard Common Press, softback/$17.95. Fondue is back so dust off your appliance and make appetizers to yummy desserts with this better than ever fondue cookbook! Roca Fondue will appeal to children and grownups.


4-ounces Almond Roca or Heath bar candy, chopped
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup sweetened condensed milk
1/3 cup sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
½ teaspoon almond extract
2 large eggs

Place candy, cream, condensed milk, sugar and vanilla and almond extract in a medium-size fondue pot over mediumlow heat. Stir frequently until candy is melted. Place the eggs in a small bowl and beat them. Stir in ½ cup of the warm cream mixture. Blend well, then add the mixture to the fondue pot and stir to combine. Serve on lowest possible heat setting. Recipe makes 3 cups. Suggested dippers include animal crackers, marshmallows and chocolate chip cookies.

Source: Recipe used with permission of the Harvard Common Press.


Carrying around excessive abdominal fat can place you at high risk for dementia later in life, according to a study in the May 20, 2010 online edition of Annuals of Neurology. The study found a strong association between increasing body mass index (BMI) and lower brain volume in older adults, as well as younger and middle aged adults. The data further suggests that central obesity (the visceral fat component of abdominal obesity) significantly raises the risk of dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. Though researchers said the findings are preliminary, they hope to use the results to help develop better prevention strategies in the future. They added that the results underscore the connection between cardiovascular health and brain health and that by avoiding heart risk factors such as obesity, hypertension, high cholesterol and a sedentary lifestyle, you are also helping preserve brain health and cognitive functions.

Source: DukeMedicine HealthNews, August 2010..


This salad is appropriately called Dilled Garden Salad because ingredients include the kind you have in home gardens or that you can find reasonably priced at Chief and Rays this time of year.


1 cup cherry tomato halves
½ seedless cucumber, sliced thin
1 small sweet onion, sliced thin
½ cup seedless kalamata olives
4-ounces mozzarella cheese cut in ½ inch cubes Vinaigrette:
¼ cup canola oil
2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
1 teaspoon dill weed
¼ teaspoon kosher salt
¼ teaspoon sugar
¼ teaspoon fresh ground pepper

Place all salad ingredients except cheese in large serving bowl; toss lightly. Whisk together vinaigrette ingredients in a small bowl and toss with salad mixture. Refrigerate overnight to blend flavors. Add cheese cubes just before serving. Recipe makes 10-1/2 cup servings.
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Mary’s Memo #2176


You can do it if you’re physically active for about an hour a day, according to recent research. A study published in the March 24/31, 2010 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association showed that women who succeeded in maintaining a normal weight and gained less than about 5 pounds during a 13 year period averaged 60 minutes of moderate-intensity activity daily through the study.

Polly deMille, RN, RCEP, an exercise physiologist at the Women’s Sports Medicine Center at Weill Cornell affiliated Hospital for Special Surgery, says you don’t have to go to a gym and work out for an hour. Instead, think about how you might fit a brisk walk into your daily routine. Chores count, too. Moving quickly through daily activities such as mowing, raking the lawn and gardening will get the heart rate into the moderate zone. Watch calories, too. Trying to lose weight by exercising alone is a losing battle since you have to burn 3,500 calories to lose just one pound of fat. Keep physically active while also following a healthful diet including plenty of vegetables and fruit, lean meat or poultry, low-fat dairy products and whole grains or other high-fiber foods. Follow a healthful diet even if you don’t lose weight because you’ll feel better and cut your risk of chronic diseases. Also, some activity is better than none.

/> Source: Weill Cornell Medical College Food & Fitness Advisor, August 2010.


I subscribed to Gourmet until it folded last summer. The problem food magazines have is that most of the recipes in the magazines can be accessed on the computer and they’re free! I do know that you are taking advantage of this free source because many of you shop with internet recipes. Even the Food Network recipes are available on the internet. I’m happy that the internet and cooking shows have broadened your taste in food.


I cleaned out the refrigerator freezer a few days ago. I must confess that once again I threw out anything I didn’t recognize but salvaged frozen sea scallops from a recent fish and seafood sale at the Bryan Chief. At the time I made a mental note to use the scallops as soon as possible. I like scallops and know from experience that they brown better when as much moisture as possible is removed by patting dry with a paper towel. I took this recipe from and altered it a trifle.

1-1/2 pounds large sea scallops
1 tablespoon light olive oil
½ cup dry white wine
1-1/2 teaspoons chopped fresh tarragon (I used ½ teaspoon dried)
¼ teaspoon kosher salt
1 tablespoon butter
Fresh ground black pepper to taste

Pat scallops dry with paper towels. Heat oil in large nonstick skillet over medium high heat; add scallops. Cook 3 minutes on each side or until done. Transfer scallops to a serving platter; keep warm. Add white wine, tarragon and salt to pan, scraping pan to loosen browned bits. Boil 1 minute. Remove from heat; add butter, stirring until butter melts. Add pepper. Pour sauce over scallops and serve immediately. Recipe serves 4.


BLT’s taste best when they’re made with homegrown tomatoes. Matter of fact, every tomato dish is better when it’s made with locally grown tomatoes, even the Impossible BLT Pie!


BLT’s taste best when they’re made with homegrown tomatoes. Matter of fact, every tomato dish is better when it’s made with locally grown tomatoes, even the Impossible BLT Pie!

12 slices bacon, crisply cooked and crumbled
1 cup shredded Swiss cheese
1/2cup Original Bisquick mix
1/3 cup light mayonnaise (I use Hellmann’s)
¾ cup milk
1/8 teaspoon pepper
2 large eggs
2 tablespoons light mayonnaise
1 cup shredded romaine or mesclun greens
6 thin slices of tomatoes

Heat oven to 400ºF. Coat a 9-inch pie plate with cooking spray. Layer bacon and cheese in pie plate. In medium bowl, whisk together Bisquick mix, 1/3 cup mayonnaise, milk, pepper and eggs until blended. Carefully pour mixture over bacon and cheese. Bake 25 to 30 minutes or until the top is golden and knife inserted in center comes out clean. Let stand 5 minutes before serving. Spread 2 tablespoons mayonnaise over top of pie. Sprinkle with lettuce. Arrange tomato slices on lettuce. Recipe makes 6 servings.

Note: If only serving part of the pie add a dab of mayonnaise to each portion, some lettuce and 1 slice of tomato
Download PDF of Memo #2176

Mary’s Memo #2175


Anne Byrne, known for making cake mixes taste homemade, has a new cookbook, The Cake Mix Doctor Bakes Gluten-Free, coming out in November. It includes 76 gluten-free recipes for cakes, bundts, cookies, brownies and bars. Each recipe has a photo, a dairy-free option and advice on storing. For more information about the gluten-free cookbook e-mail the author at


Consuming almonds, walnuts, pecans and several other types of tree nuts lowers LDL (bad) cholesterol levels, according to research results published May 1, 2010 in the Archives of Internal Medicine. The researchers performed a meta-analysis on data from 25 studies and found that consuming 67 grams or about 2.4 ounces, of nuts per day reduced total cholesterol by five percent and LDL cholesterol by 7 percent. Among study participants with an initial triglycerides level of 150 mg/dL or higher, triglycerides came down by an average of just 10 percent. Eating nuts had the most pronounced effect on people with higher initial LDL levels (over 160 mg/dL) and on people who were in the normal-weight range with a body mass of less than 25.

Source: Weill Cornell Medical College Food & Fitness Advisor, August 2010.


Overweight and moderately obese postmenopausal women using diets based on higher protein intake also need to be aware of potential bone loss, according to recent research from Purdue University.

“We know that when overweight, postmenopausal women reduce their energy intake to successfully lose weight, they can lose less lean body mass when they consume higher amounts of protein and include lean meats, such as pork loins, ham, beef and chicken, in their diet,” said Wayne W. Campbell, professor of foods and nutrition. “However, we also found that these older women lost bone mineral density faster than women who consumed normal protein diets that did not contain meats but got their protein from vegetarian, dairy and egg sources. The finding is of concern for the 43 to 80 age group that is susceptible to osteoporosis.” “Each individual needs to evaluate, or consult with a dietitian about how to achieve and sustain a healthy body weight and body composition, including muscle and bone,” Campbell said. “It is also important to note that these studies were relatively short, so studies to evaluate how protein intakes impact body composition and bone beyond the period of active weight loss would be helpful.”

The findings are published online in the Journal of

Gerontology: Medical Sciences and will be printed in

Purdue News Service.

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Mary’s Memo #2174


First there was Pepperidge Farm Deli Flats and now there’s Aunt Millie’s 90 calorie Slimwiches and Arnold Sandwich Thins. In addition, Thomas has introduced Bagel Thins including Everything, Whole Wheat and Honey Wheat. I really like the “thin” concept.

Consumer Reports gave a thumbs-up to All Oxi-Active Detergent, in the supermarket since February 1, 2010. Scottie Unger, Assistant Manager at the Bryan Chief reports that it’s moving so fast they can hardly keep it in stock! It does a great job of cleaning but it would be even better if also available without perfume or dyes for those of us with sensitive skin.


Daughter Mary Ann found this week’s Grecian Orzo Salad in the Naperville, IL, newspaper but it was taken from Weber’s on the Grill: Steak & Sides, published this year by Sunset for $14.95. She made it first and thought it would be a good recipe for me to serve to Bryan Chief shoppers. Except for a few tasters that thought it had too many ingredients, most gave it rave reviews. I judge the success of a recipe at the Chief by how many customers buy the ingredients to make it while they are shopping. I increased the lemon zest a trifle and also added more lemon juice. Sometimes orzo is mistakenly thought to be rice but it’s definitely pasta and available with other pasta products.


Zest of 1 lemon
Juice of 1-1/2 lemons
¼ cup light olive oil
1-1/2 teaspoons chopped fresh dill
1 clove garlic, minced
¼ teaspoon kosher salt
1/8 teaspoon ground pepper Salad:
1 cup orzo, cooked al dente
2 ounces crumbled feta cheese
¾ cup finely diced red bell pepper
¾ cup halved cherry tomatoes
1/3 cup seeded kalamata olives cut in thirds*
2 tablespoons sliced scallions, white and light green part only
1-1/2 tablespoons fresh oregano (fresh herbs available in produce department)

In a small bowl, whisk together vinaigrette ingredients. Bring medium saucepan of salted water to a boil. Add orzo and cook according to package directions. Drain orzo and place in a salad bowl. Add vinaigrette and feta cheese and toss well. Add bell pepper, cherry tomato halves, olives, scallions and oregano and toss again. Serve immediately. *Save time by buying olives already seeded at Chief and Rays.


Smoking, lack of physical activity and alcohol consumption are associated with a significantly increased risk of death from cardiovascular disease (CVD), cancer and premature mortality, especially when combined. According to a report in the April 26, 2010 issue of Archives of Internal Medicine, a Norwegian study observed 4,886 participants age 18 and older during an average 20 years of follow-up. In that time, 1,080 participants died, 431 from CVD, 318 from cancer and 331 from other causes. The risk of death from all causes and from each cause increased with each additional unhealthy behavior.

Source: Duke Medicine Health News, June 2010.


In the 70s and 80s we did more meal preparation in the microwave. It’s 2010 and still a good way to prepare quick entrees for your family and keep the kitchen cool while doing it! Sweet and Sour Pork is an example. Made with a cheaper cut of pork, it’s the perfect choice for a hot August day .


1-1/2 pounds pork shoulder steak, cut into thin strips
20-ounce can pineapple chunks canned in juice, drained, reserving juice
¼ cup packed light brown sugar
¼ cup cornstarch
¼ teaspoon kosher salt
½ cup cold water
2 tablespoons reduced sodium soy sauce
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
½ large green or red bell pepper, thinly sliced
½ medium onion, thinly sliced

Arrange pork strips in 8x12-inch (2-quart) glass baking dish. Cover with wax paper and cook on medium-high for 7 minutes. Remove meat and set aside. Combine brown sugar, cornstarch and salt with reserved pineapple juice, water, soy sauce and vinegar. Blend cornstarch mixture with pan juices. Add meat, pineapple, bell pepper and onion. Cook, covered, at medium-high heat for 15 minutes, stirring every 5 minutes or until pork is done and sauce is thickened. Serve on rice. Recipe makes 6 servings. Download PDF of Memo #2174

Mary’s Memo #2173


I’ve already shared Summertime Lemonade from Not Your Mother’s Microwave Cookbook by Beth Hensperger.

The Harvard Common Press, 2010; $14.95/softback. But it was the recipe for Not Your Mother’s Risotto with Asparagus and Mushrooms that actually prompted Hensperger to develop the cookbook. Risotto purists will frown on microwave risotto but in August, the “dog days of summer,” who wants to work over a hot stove! For best results follow directions exactly.


2 Tbsp. unsalted butter
2 Tbsp. olive oil
3 Tbsp. minced shallots
1½ cups Arborio rice (available at Chief and Rays)
3¾ cups low sodium chicken broth, plus more as needed, heated
6-oz. mushrooms of your choice, sliced
12-oz. asparagus spears, cut in 2-inch pieces on the diagonal (produce department has a scale)
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
¾ cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese

Place butter and oil in round 2-quart Pyrex casserole dish. Microwave, uncovered, 1 to 2 minutes on high to melt and warm. Add shallots and stir to coat; microwave on high 2 minutes. Add the rice and stir to coat all the grains; microwave on high 2 minutes until the rice mixture begins to yellow. Pour in hot broth and microwave on high for 6 to 7 minutes (rice will be undercooked and a bit soupy at this point). Add the mushrooms and asparagus; microwave on high 6 minutes. Taste for texture (the risotto should be tender and creamy yet slightly chewy). Season with salt and pepper. If rice is not yet tender, continue microwaving on high in 2 minute intervals, adding a tablespoon or two of broth if necessary to adjust the consistency. Remove from microwave. Stir in the cheese; serve immediately. Recipe makes 4 servings.

Source: Not Your Mother’s Microwave Cookbook by Bet



Ocean Spray finally joined most food manufacturers and reduced the size of their canned jellied and whole berry cranberry sauce, from 16 to 14-ounces. All recipes at are focused on the 14-ounce size. I’ve tested two recipes including Ultimate Party Meatballs and Slow-Cooker Sweet and Smokey Barbecue Pulled Pork Sandwiches. Both get a “tasting spoon up” from me!


14-oz. can Ocean Spray Jellied Cranberry Sauce
12-oz. bottle Heinz Chili Sauce
2 lb. bag frozen, pre-cooked, cocktail-size meatballs

Combine sauces in a large saucepan. Cook over medium-low heat, stirring until smooth. Add meatballs. Cover and cook 15 minutes or until meatballs are heated through, stirring occasionally. Recipe makes about 30 appetizer servings. Note: To prepare in a slow cooker, arrange frozen meatballs in 4-quart capacity cooker. Combine sauces and pour over meatballs. Cover and cook on high 4 hours.

Download PDF of Memo #2173