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Mary’s Memo – September 30th

FROM THE COOKBOOK SHELF


I was the birthday recipient of Eat Your Vegetables, Bold Recipes for the Single Cook by Joe Yonan (Ten Speed Press, Berkeley, division of Crown Publishing). What I like best about this book is a chapter on storing and using extra ingredients since they often spoil in my refrigerator. Yonan includes recipes to prevent this from happening. He also encourages the single cook to use his recipes as guidelines. How much you fix depends on how hungry you are, what you feel like eating or is it seasoned to suit you? Feel free to adjust quantity if you’re a family of 2. This is the perfect book for anyone looking to expand their produce-based repertoire.

Yonan is also author of Serve Yourself: Nightly Adventures in Cooking for One (Ten Speed Press, 2011), an outgrowth of his monthly column, Cooking for One, for the Washington Post. He got the cooking bug from his Indiana-born mother, who let him shop for groceries starting at age 8. The author holds a professional chef’s diploma from the Cambridge School of Culinary Arts outside Boston and a bachelor of journalism from the University of Texas at Austin. He lives in Washington, DC.

Roasted Sweet Potato with Coconut, Dates and Walnuts proves that single eating can be as exciting and flavorful as you want it!

ROASTED SWEET POTATO WITH COCONUT, DATES AND WALNUTS


• 1 small sweet potato (6 to 8 ounces)
• 3 tablespoons raw unsalted walnut halves
• 1 teaspoon virgin coconut oil (may substitute butter, olive oil or walnut oil)
• Kosher or sea salt
• 1 teaspoon finely shredded unsweetened coconut
• 2 or 3 pitted dates, preferably Medjool, chopped
• 1 tablespoon large unsweetened coconut flakes

Preheat oven to 425ºF. Use a fork to prick sweet potato in several places. Place on a piece of aluminum foil and bake until potato is tender and can be easily squeezed, 30 to 40 minutes. While the potato is baking, sprinkle the walnuts into a small skillet over medium high heat. Cook, shaking the pan frequently until nuts start to brown and become fragrant, a few minutes. Immediately transfer them to a plate to cool; if you leave them to cool in the pan, they can burn. Once they are cool, chop them. Transfer the sweet potato to a serving plate. Use a knife to slash it open, then spoon the coconut oil on top, mashing it in. Sprinkle with salt to taste, then add the finely shredded coconut, walnuts, dates and large coconut flakes and eat.
Source: Eat Your Vegetables, Bold Recipes for the Single Cook by Joe Yonan.

MORE EVIDENCE THAT HEART FOOD IS BRAIN FOOD


A study presented at the Alzheimer’s Association International Conference in July 2013 provides new evidence that a heart-healthy diet may help protect against cognitive decline. Researchers calculated DASH (Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension) diet scores for 832 study participants based on the foods and nutrients that comprise the DASH diet (fruits, vegetables, whole grains, nuts and legumes, dairy, meat and fish. saturated fat and total fat), with higher scores reflecting better DASH accordance. Those who had higher DASH scores (more vegetables, nuts, seeds and legumes and less total and saturated fat) did better on standard tests of cognition.


PEANUTS AND CANDY CORN


Brachs realized this year what some of us have known for a long time; that peanuts and candy corn taste good together and they’re now marketing it that way. Brachs also combined peanuts with their harvest mix. However, I think Zachary’s candy corn made with honey in Frankfort, IN is the best tasting and they get my candy corn business as soon as it’s available.

WHAT ELSE IS NEW AT CHIEF?


When it comes to crackers I have avoided a lot of flavorful ones because one of the ingredients is monosodium glutamate (MSG). New at Chief is Annie’s Cheddar Squares with no artificial flavors, synthetic colors or preservatives. Check out other Annie’s brand items at Chief and log on to their web site at Annies.com.

WHAT’S FOR DINNER?


Can you believe this Glazed Sausage Meatball recipe makes 3 dozen with just one pound of Chief’s own ground sausage? Serve as an appetizer or entrée.

GLAZED SAUSAGE BALLS


• 1 slightly beaten egg
• 1 pound Chief’s own ground sausage
• 1/2 cup finely crushed saltine crackers
• 1/3 cup milk
• 1/2 teaspoon rubbed sage
• 1/2 cup water
• 1/4 cup catsup
• 2 tablespoons packed brown sugar
• 1 tablespoon cider vinegar
• 1 tablespoon reduced sodium soy sauce

In mixer bowl, combine egg, sausage, crackers, milk and sage. Beat at high speed on electric mixer for 5 minutes. Shape into 1-1/4-inch balls (mixture will be soft). Wet hands to shape easily. In skillet, brown meat on both sides, shaking pan occasionally to keep balls round. Pour off excess fat. Combine water, catsup, brown sugar, vinegar and soy sauce. Pour over meatballs. Cover and simmer 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. If serving as an appetizer, keep hot in a chafing dish.

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