FROM THE COOKBOOK SHELF
If you’re a fan of Midwest Living published by Meredith Corporation, you’ll be impressed with Taste of Four Seasons, published in 2015. My rhubarb is peeping through the ground and I couldn’t resist the Rhubarb. Chess Pie recipe. Even the butter-added crust recipe is included.
RHUBARB CHESS PIE
Pastry for Single Crust (recipe follows)
2 cups 1-inch thick slices rhubarb
1¼ cups granulated sugar
4 eggs, lightly beaten
½ cup whipping cream
¼ cup butter, melted
¼ cup lemon juice
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1 tablespoon corn meal
1 teaspoon vanilla
¼ teaspoon salt
Prepare Single Crust Pie Pastry. Line pastry with a double thickness of foil. Bake 8 minutes. Remove foil. Bake 6 minutes more. Meanwhile, arrange rhubarb on a baking sheet. Bake alongside pastry for 10 minutes. Remove from oven; cool. Sprinkle with ¼ cup sugar; toss to coat. Transfer to baked pastry. Set aside.
In a large bowl, whisk together eggs, remaining sugar, cream, butter, lemon juice, cornstarch, cornmeal, vanilla and salt. Bake in preheated 375ºF oven for 40 minutes or until center is set; cover loosely with foil for last 10 minutes of baking. Cool on wire rack 2 hours. Chill, covered, for at least 3 hours or up to 24 hours. Makes 8 servings.
Pastry for Single-Crust Pie. In medium bowl, stir together 1½ cups flour and ½ teaspoon salt. Using a pastry blender, cut in ¼ cup shortening and ¼ cup cold butter, cut up, until pieces are pea-size. Sprinkle with 1 tablespoon water; gently toss with a fork. Push moistened dough to side. Repeat moistening dough, using 1 tablespoon water at a time until moistened, about 5 tablespoons total. Form dough into a ball. Using your hands, slightly flatten on lightly floured surface. Roll pastry from center to edges into a 12-inch circle. Wrap around rolling pin; unroll into a 9-inch pie plate. Trim pastry to ½ inch beyond edge; fold under extra pastry. Crimp edges.
Source: Midwest Living Taste of the Seasons.
DOES EXCESSIVE SITTING AGE YOU
Too much sitting and too little exercise may speed biological aging by as much as 8 years, suggests an American Journal of Epidemiology study.
A group of 1,481 women (average age 79) from a nationally-representative sample wore motion sensors for one week. The combination of being too sedentary and getting less than 30 minutes a day of moderate to vigorous exercise was associated with having white blood cells with significantly shorter telomeres. Telomeres are caps that protect the ends of DNA. They shorten with age, but factors such as exercise may affect the rate. “Having shortened telomere length is associated with heart disease, type 2 diabetes and major cancers, as well as shorter life expectancy,” says Aladdin Shadyab, PhD, the study’s lead author at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine. Strive for at least 30 minutes of moderate exercise daily.
Source: Tufts Health & Nutrition News Letter, April, 2017.
WHY IS THIRTEEN OF SOMETHING KNOWN A BAKER’S DOZEN?
Bread has been the staff of life since ancient times. By the middle of the 12th century A.D. the baking industry in England had become organized, and London bakers had formed an official brotherhood. Later, they reorganized into Brown Bakers and the Company of White Bakers and were subject to strict regulations. A law passed in 1266 stipulated exactly eighty loaves of bread were to be baked from a standard sack of flour. It was illegal to sell loaves of bread that varied from a set weight. Bakers who were found selling underweight loaves in the Middle East who were nailed by their ears to their shop’s doorway for selling underweight bread. Add an extra loaf of bread for every twelve they sold, to make up for the underweight loaves, was a small price for the bakers to pay.
Source: The Book of Totally Useless Information by Don Voorheese.
FRENCH TOAST ANYONE?
French toast was a weekend favorite when we were a family of 6. Now I make it in one of the heavily advertised copper skillets that resist scratching no matter how hard you try.
1 cup milk
2 beaten eggs
¼ teaspoon salt
Pure maple syrup
Whisk together milk, eggs and salt. Dip bread slices in milk mixture. Fry until golden browning a small amount butter. Serve with pure maple syrup. Serve immediately.
Source: Better Homes & Gardens Cookbook
KUDOS TO LEWIS BAKERY CO!
LEWIS BAKERY, committed to responding to consumers’ demand for quality products since 1925, for their half loaf concept. Lewis bread products are available in the bread department at Chief.
Easy Eats -Braised Balsamic ChickenIngredients 6 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves 1 teaspoon garlic salt ground black pepper to taste 2 tablespoons olive oil 1 onion, thinly sliced 1 (14.5 ounce) can diced tomatoes 1/2 Cup balsamic vinegar 1 teaspoon dried basil 1 teaspoon oregano 1 teaspoon dried rosemary 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme Directions
- Season both sides of chicken breasts with garlic salt and pepper. Heat olive oil in a skillet over medium heat; cook seasoned chicken breasts until chicken is browned, 3 to 4 minutes. Pour diced tomatoes and balsamic vinegar over chicken; season with basil, oregano, rosemary, and thyme. Simmer util chicken is no longer pink and the juices run clear, about 15 minutes.
Lately, I've been doing a bit of meal prep on the weekend to get us ready for the upcoming week. Whether that's washing and cutting vegetables, making a loaf of bread or muffins, or simply shredding the meat off a rotisserie chicken for quick sandwiches and salads for lunch, it makes life so much smoother during the week!
Once in awhile, I'll whip up a pasta salad or rice dish that's easy to grab and eat quickly for lunch, and this Mediterranean Chicken Quinoa Salad is my new favorite! Quinoa is a high-protein gluten-free grain that is a great substitute for rice, couscous, or pasta.
In this dish, it's combined with freshly grilled chicken, cucumbers, tomatoes, Greek olives, and crumbled feta cheese. A pop of fresh lemon juice and a drizzle of olive oil make it a complete meal in a bowl. My husband and I both loved this dish. It's so fresh, and the feta cheese adds just the right amount of tang. Our little 9-month-old James gobbled it right up, too!
It's pretty simple, too. The worst part is probably chopping all the vegetables. The veggies: tomatoes, cucumber, red onion, and kalamata olives.
Once you've cooked up your quinoa and grilled the chicken, just mix it all together!
Mediterranean Chicken Quinoa Salad
Servings/Yield: 4-6 servings
- 1 cup quinoa
- 2 cups chicken stock
- 1 cucumber, finely diced
- 1½ cups grape tomatoes, halved
- ½ cup diced red onion
- ½ cup kalamata olives, sliced
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2-3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 1 cup crumbled feta cheese
- For the chicken:
- 1½ lbs boneless skinless chicken breast
- garlic powder
- salt & fresh ground pepper pepper
- 1-2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1-2 tablespoons olive oil
1. To prepare the chicken, season liberally with oregano, garlic powder, salt, and pepper. Drizzle with lemon juice and olive oil. Let marinate 30 minutes up to 4 hours.
2. Begin by rinsing quinoa in a fine mesh strainer with cold water. Place quinoa and chicken stock in a saucepan and bring to a rolling boil. Cover, and reduce to a simmer; simmer 15 minutes. Remove from the heat and let sit 5 minutes with the lid still on. Remove lid and fluff with a fork.
3. While quinoa is simmering, prepare the grill or grill pan to medium high. Place marinated chicken and cook 5 minutes on each side, until chicken is tender. Remove to cool; then dice into small cubes.
4. In a large serving bowl, combine cooked quinoa, grilled chicken pieces, cucumbers, tomatoes, red onion, and olives. Stir to combine. Add olive oil, lemon juice, and feta cheese; stir again until combined. Serve warm, or prepare in advance to serve cold. Delicious with some pita bread and hummus on the side.
Source: adapted from SkinnyTaste
Grilled Sausages with Summer Vegetables
Servings/Yield: 4-5 servings
- ½ cup peach preserves
- ⅓ cup soy sauce
- 1 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic
- ½ teaspoon sriracha chili sauce
- 2 medium sweet red peppers
- 2 small zucchini
- 2 small yellow squash
- 1 package Italian sausage links
1. For marinade, combine peach preserves, soy sauce, ginger, and minced garlic in a bowl; whisk to mix thoroughly.
2. Prepare the sweet red peppers by cutting off each end, and scoop out seeds. Cut into 4 large pieces. Prepare the zucchini and yellow squash by cutting off each end and cutting into quarters length-wise. Place vegetables in large bowl and drizzle with half of sauce, tossing to mix.
3. Preheat the grill to medium heat, and oil grates. Place vegetables on one half of grill, and sausages on the other half. Grill 15-20 minutes, flipping halfway, until vegetables are slightly charred and tender, and sausages are cooked to 160*F.
4. Remove sausages and veggies from grill. Dice vegetables into bite-size pieces and toss with remaining marinade. Serve sausages alongside veggies.
Source: adapted from Taste of Home Magazine
- Bacon-wrapped Stuffed Dates
- Bacon-wrapped Puff Pastry Twists
- Apple Cider Pulled Pork
- Grown-up Pigs in a Blanket
- Roasted Corn Dip
Soft Pretzel NuggetsServings/Yield: about 75 nuggets
- Pretzel dough
- 1½ cups warm water, 110*-115*F
- 2 teaspoons sugar
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 2¼ teaspoons instant yeast
- 4½ cups all-purpose flour
- ¼ cup unsalted butter, melted
- To finish
- 10 cups water
- ⅔ cup baking soda
- 1 egg yolk
- 1 tablespoon water
- additional kosher salt
Beer Cheese FondueServings/Yield: about 4 cups
- ¼ cup chopped onion
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1 teaspoon minced garlic
- 1 cup beer
- 4 cups freshly grated cheddar cheese
- 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons cream
ANOTHER REASON FOR NOT SMOKING
Smoking may increase your risk of colon cancer, at least among women, suggests a new Norwegian study in Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention. The researchers followed 600,000 people for 14 years and found that female smokers were 19 percent more likely to develop colon cancer, on average, than women who never smoked. And female smokers tended to develop the cancer at a younger age than male smokers. Women who smoked for at least 40 years had a 50 percent higher risk of colon cancer. Though this study did not find that male smokers were at increased risk, they are not off the hook, since some earlier studies found that they, too, are more likely to develop colon cancer. Source: University of California, Berkeley Wellness Letter, August 2013.
FAST FIXES FOR DIET DERAILERS
Let yourself cheat on weekends. Trying to eat healthy 100 percent of the time is unrealistic, but 80 to 90 percent of the time isn’t, says nutritionist Jackie Newgent, R.D.N. “It is okay to enjoy a couple of not so perfectly healthful meals per week,” she says. “You can specifically plan to have those on the weekend without worrying about willpower. Plus, when it’s possible, plan to walk at least 30 minutes before your less-than-stellar meals to help accommodate extra calories in advance.” Source: Consumer Reports on Health, August 2013.
FEED YOUR BRAIN!
Several foods have been linked to improved brain health. Blueberries and walnuts contain polyphenols that have been shown to protect the brain from oxidative stress and reduce the effects of age-related conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease. Walnuts also contain omega-3 fatty acids. Research has shown that people who do not get enough omega-3s are at increased risk of fatigue, poor memory, decreased concentration and mood swings. Source: Weill Cornell Medical College Women’s Nutrition Connection, August 2013.
A DIFFERENT KIND OF BEAN SALAD
While doing some summer housecleaning I found a bean salad recipe from my sister, Ann, from ages ago. It appeals to me because one of the ingredients is stuffed olives and I haven’t tasted an olive I didn’t like!
ANN’S BEAN SALAD
• 1 (14.5-ounce) can blue lake green beans
• 1 (14.5-ounce) can yellow wax beans
• 1 (15-ounce) can kidney beans
• 1 cup chopped celery
• 1 cup chopped sweet onion
• 1 cup sliced stuffed olives
• Italian dressing
• Vinegar (optional)
Drain beans. Add other vegetables. Marinate in Italian dressing. If you like it more tart, add vinegar to taste. Chill overnight. Source: Ann Trentadue, Upper St Claire PA.
RAVE REVIEWS FOR THIS ONE!
Although most fresh fruits are available throughout the year, they are not always USA-grown. That’s why I like the summer fruit selection best of all because the grapes I used in Grape Salad were grown here. I used equal amounts of red and green for added color. Calories were cut by substituting reduced-fat cream cheese for regular and light sour cream for full fat one. Because toasting enhances the flavor the pecans were toasted that go on top.
• 2 pounds green seedless grapes
• 2 pounds red seedless grapes
• 1 teaspoon vanilla
• 1 (8-ounce) package reduced-fat cream cheese
• 1 (8-ounce) carton light sour cream (I use Daisy brand)
• 1 cup packed light brown sugar
• 2 cups chopped pecans, toasted
Wash grapes and pat dry (important). Combine vanilla, cream cheese, sour cream and brown sugar. Stir into grapes and toss gently. Before serving, top with toasted pecans. To toast nuts, lightly brown in a nonstick skillet, stirring constantly, until nuts give off a nice aroma, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and cool. Source: Adapted from recipe in Four Seasons Colony Cookbook, via Renee Isaac, Bryan.
Oxo has a new 3-in-one adjustable potato ricer with a rotating stainless steel disk to easily change puree consistency. Fine setting is perfect for fluffy mashed potatoes, turnips and carrots. Medium setting is ideal for spaetzle and pressing water out of cooked greens and coarse setting is great for chunky applesauce, egg salad and pressing tomatoes for sauce. I bought mine at Bed Bath & Beyond at 20% off with coupon. Also, at a Crate and Barrel I found a 6-inch Anchor Hocking made-in-the-USA glass pie plate. Now I can make 2 serving-size pies, quiches and frittatas. They should also be available at Amazon.com.
A Chief customer has lost a recipe for Dilled Carrots that I had on a memo during the 80s. I seem to have lost mine, also. If you have the recipe would you please leave copy at the Chief Supermarket nearest you?
- 1 lb. boneless skinless chicken breasts
- salt & pepper
- ½ cup barbecue sauce
- ¼ cup buffalo wing sauce
- 4-6 slices provolone cheese
- 2-3 green onions, chopped
- 4 onion buns, toasted
- ranch dressing, for serving
Lemon Poppyseed Muffin French Toast with Strawberry-Rhubarb CompoteServings/Yield: about 4 servings
- For the compote
- 1-1½ cups sliced strawberries
- 1 cup diced rhubarb
- ¾ cup sugar
- ¼ cup water
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- For the French toast
- 4 bakery-style lemon poppyseed muffins
- 3 eggs
- ½ cup milk
- 2-4 tablespoons butter