Friday, November 30, 2012

Subway to the Rescue!

Today's Menu: 6" Turkey Breast & Black Forest Ham Sub

I was at the rehab center the biggest part of the day and really didn't feel like cooking dinner tonight. So it was Subway to the rescue! I had a 6" Sub on a 9 grain Wheat Bun w/ Provolone, Black Olives, Lettuce, Olive Oil Blend, and Yellow Mustard. The total calories for the sub is 380 calories and 45 carbs. I could have had lowered those totals a bit by going without the Provolone Cheese and Olive Oil Blend but I had a very low calorie and carb count today so I was able to add the extras. I also had a side of Ruffle's Light Fat Free Potato Chips, 80 calories and 17 carbs per serving (15 Chips). For dessert later tonight a Jello Sugar Free Chocolate Pudding, 60 calories and 14 carbs. Enjoy the Weekend Everyone!

Kitchen Hint of the Day

Try basting your Chicken or Turkey with a small amount of white zinfandel or vermouth - it will help crisp the skin, and the sugar in the alcohol will impart a brown color and glaze to the outside of the meat. Or brush the skin with reduced-sodium soy sauce during the last 30 minutes of cooking to produce a beautiful burnished color.

Cincinnati Food Tours Presented by Daisy Mae's Market

Experience a foodie trip around the world during this 90-minute guided tour of Cincinnati’s historic Findlay Market. Your $15 ticket includes stops and tastings at six specialty merchants. Optional $5 add-on completes your tour with wine tasting at Market Wines.

Taste the World at Findlay Market
You'll meet at Daisy Mae's at the Race Street end of the market house where you'll hear a brief introduction to Findlay Market. Then we’ll begin our walking tour visiting six merchants. Participating vendors may include: Fresh Table, Churchill’s Fine Teas, Mama Lo Hizo, Dean’s Mediterranean Imports, Dojo Gelato, Gramma Debbie’s Kitchen, Taste of Belgium,  Skirtz & Johnston Fine Pastries and Chocolates, Bean Haus, Colonel De Gourmet Herbs & Spices, Market Wines, and Daisy Mae’s.  At each stop you'll meet the merchants, learn their history and products, and sample sips or small bites. If you've opted for the $5 add-on, you'll conclude your tour at Market Wines and enjoy a wine tasting of four varieties from around the world. Or, on select weekends, you may choose to enjoy some local beer in our weekend OTR Biergarten.

Note: Merchant list is not all-inclusive, and stops vary by date and availability. We will post the list of the six participating merchants for each tour on our Facebook page as soon as confirmed.

Upcoming 2012 tours:
Sunday, December 2, 2012 at 12:00 pm
Saturday, December 15, 2012 at 3:00 pm

2013 Tours:
Sunday, January 27, 2013 at 12:00 pm
Saturday, February 9, 2013 at 3:00 pm
Sunday, February 24, 2013 at 12:00 pm
Saturday, March 23, 2013 at 3:00 pm
Sunday, April 7, 2013 at 1:00 pm
Saturday, April 27, 2013 at 3:00 pm
Saturday, May 11, 2013 at 3:00 pm
Sunday, May 19, 2013 at 1:00 pm

Online reservations available soon for 2013 tours. Call 513-602-5602 for information.

Also follow us on Twitter and Facebook for updates.

CORPORATE TOURS, PRIVATE GROUPS,  AND FIELD TRIPS: We can arrange a private tour for your group of 8 or more. Price is $15 per person. Optional $5 add-on at Market Wines is available for those age 21 and over. Please contact us at least one week in advance to schedule.

KID-FRIENDLY stops, samples, and pricing for field trips. We’ll create a custom tour for you.

For questions or to make a reservation by phone, contact Barb Cooper at 513-602-5602 or

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Teriyaki Chicken w/ Water Chestnuts, Mini Carrots, Pineapple Chunks, and...

Dinner Tonight: Teriyaki Chicken w/ Water Chestnuts, Mini Carrots, Pineapple Chunks, and Chow Mein Noodles

My Mom has been spending most of the day with my Dad at a Rehab Center so I've been trying to make sure she has a hearty and filling dinner waiting on her when she comes home. Last week or so I prepared a La Choy Creations Sweet & Sour and this week I went with the La Choy Teriyaki Chicken. I love these new one-skillet meals from La Choy; they add an Asian flair while also creating a filling and delicious meal in no time!. Each box contains all of the ingredients you need, except for the meat, to create a flavorful meal in just 20 minutes. All you have to do is combine the ingredients with your choice of protein (chicken, beef, shrimp, whatever you choose) in a skillet and any sides you would like to add and your done. When done you have a delicious meal that was easy to prepare and even easier to clean-up! The Teriyaki took 2 pans to prepare it, 1 for the Chicken and Sauce and 1 for the Rice.

First time I prepared this one and it will not be the last! Excellent Chicken  Teriyaki! The flavors were incredible and the  Teriyaki Sauce was fantastic. I added Sliced Water Chestnuts, Libby's Skinny Fruits No Sugar Added Pineapple Chunks, Mini Carrots, and China Boy Chow Mein Noodles. I love using Pineapple in dishes especially with Asian style dishes. The Pineapple paired with the Teriyaki Sauce was perfect combo and the Sauce was, oops I already told you how good that was. The La Choy box reads it has 6 servings but you could get more than that out of it. This would go great with Shrimp or Pork also. For dessert later a Jello Sugarless Dark Chocolate Pudding.

La Choy Creations Teriyaki Chicken

La Choy Creations Teriyaki Chicken offers a mouthwatering match up of red peppers and sesame seeds in a tasty teriyaki sauce, served over rice. All you have to do for this deliciously easy meal is prepare the chicken with the sauce, and then pour the blended mixture over cooked rice.

Teriyaki Chicken Family Meal
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size 1 cup prepared (227g)
Servings Per Container about 6
Amount Per Serving
Calories 310Calories from Fat 60
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 6g 9%
  Saturated Fat 1.5g 8%
  Trans Fat 0g
Cholesterol 25mg 8%
Sodium 800mg 33%
Total Carbohydrate 40g 13%
  Dietary Fiber 2g 8%
  Sugars 7g
Protein 23g
Vitamin A 6% Vitamin C 4%
Calcium 4% Iron 15%

Sweet-Cinnamon Ginger Spice Cookies

Sweet-Cinnamon Ginger Spice Cookies


6 tablespoons vegetable shortening
6 tablespoons I Can't Believe It's Not Butter (Stick)
1 cup Splenda No Calorie Sweetener, Granulated
1 large egg or 1/4 cup Egg Beater's
1/4 cup molasses
2 cups sifted all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
Walnut pieces (Optional). To top the cookies with


Mix together shortening, margarine, Splenda Granulated Sweetener, egg and molasses in a large mixing bowl.
Sift dry ingredients together and add to shortening mixture. Mix thoroughly.
Chill dough in refrigerator until firm (approximately 1-2 hours).
Preheat oven to 350°F .
Form dough into 30 balls, approximately 1 level tablespoons each. Place cookies on ungreased cookie sheet and pat down gently with fork making a criss-cross pattern.
Top with Walnut pieces (Optional)
Bake cookies in the center of the preheated 350°F (175°C) oven for 10 to 12 minutes. Do not overbake. Cookies will look chewy when they come out but will become crisp. Cool cookies on wire cooling rack.
Makes 30 cookies.

Nutrition Info Per Serving (1 cookie): Calories 80 | Calories from Fat 45 | Fat 5.0g (sat 1.0g) | Cholesterol 5mg | Sodium 30mg | Carbohydrates 8g | Fiber 0g | Sugars 2g | Protein 1g

*The above Nutrition Info is totals without the added Walnut pieces.

*This recipe was changed from an original Splenda Recipe.

Kitchen Hint of the Day!

Skinning a bird? The easiest way to skin poultry is to partially freeze it first. The skin will come right off the bird with almost no effort.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Today’s Menu: Spaghetti and Turkey Meatballs w/ Baked Parm Toast

It was Spaghetti and Meatballs tonight! used Ronzoni Healthy Harvest Whole Wheat Spaghetti along with Honeysuckle White Turkey Meatballs. Topped everything with Kraft Shredded Parmesan Cheese and Bella Vita Low Carb Pasta Sauce (Meat Flavored). Along with the great taste the Sauce is only 70 Calories and 6 Carbs! At the end of the post I left the product description for the Ronzoni Spaghetti and the Bella Vita Pasta Sauce.

I also had healthy Life Whole Grain Bread that I buttered with I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter and then sprinkled with Shredded Parm Cheese. Then I baked it at 350 degrees for 7 minutes. Makes an quick and easy way for a side of Bread for Pasta Dishes. For dessert/snack a 100 Calorie Mini Bag of Jolly Time Pop Corn.

Ronzoni Healthy Harvest Nutrition

Here’s something to absorb: One serving of RONZONI HEALTHY HARVEST pasta has over 20% of your daily recommended fiber intake – but did you know that fiber is good for you in more ways than just digestion?

People with diets high in fiber have a lower risk for weight gain, obesity, development of insulin resistance and diabetes. Fiber also prevents constipation, hemorrhoids and diverticulosis, but it also helps reduce the risk of certain chronic diseases like colon and breast cancer. Fiber may help lower LDL (bad) cholesterol and total cholesterol, therefore reducing the risk of heart disease. It can also help lower blood sugar to better manage diabetes.

Dietary fiber is the edible part of plants, primarily carbohydrates that are resistant to digestion and absorption in the small intestine. Fiber may be digested by fermentation in the large intestine. By eating high fiber foods you feel fuller, eat less, with fewer absorbed calories.

Fiber comes in two basic forms – soluble and insoluble. Soluble fiber is found in fruits, vegetables, seeds, brown rice, oats and barley. It prevents or reduces the absorption of certain substances into the bloodstream. Insoluble fiber is found mainly in whole grains and on the outside of seeds, fruits, legumes, and other foods. It is like a sponge that swells within the intestine to promote more efficient elimination and alleviate some digestive disorders.

Fiber is found only in plant foods and passes through the digestive tract without being completely broken down. Being indigestible, fiber provides no nutrients to the body, which is why for many years it was removed from processed foods like white bread. But, nutritionists have since discovered that fiber performs valuable functions precisely because it is not digested, and it is essential to good health.

The 2005 Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommends everyone consume 14 g of fiber for every 1000 calories. Ronzoni Healthy Harvest is an excellent source of fiber, with 5-6 grams of fiber in every 2 oz. serving. Fiber is an integral part of your everyday diet, and RONZONI HEALTHY HARVEST pasta, as an excellent source, is a perfect solution to get more of it onto your family’s plate!

Whole Grain Spaghetti

Nutrition Facts
Serving Size: 2oz (56g) Dry Uncooked
Servings per Container: About 7

Amount Per Serving

Calories 180 Calories from Fat 10

% Daily Value*

Total Fat 1g 2%

Saturated Fat 0g 0%

Trans Fat 0g

Cholesterol 0mg 0%

Sodium 0mg 0%

Total Carbohydrates 41g 14%

Dietary Fiber 6g 23%

Sugars <1g p="p">
Protein 7g

Bella Vita
Low Carb Pasta Sauces
Bella Vita (Italian for “Beautiful Life”) is made from succulent, vine-ripened sweet plum tomatoes, and is simmered in extra virgin olive oil.

Bella Vita sauces have only 4g net carbs per serving, are cholesterol free and are OU Kosher Pareve. Now you can enjoy healthy, all natural, low carb pasta dishes with plenty of pleasure…and none of the guilt. Now that’s a beautiful life!

Bella Vita
Low Carb Pasta Sauce, Meat Flavored
26 oz.
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size: 1/2 Cup (125g)
Servings Per Container: about 6

Per Serving % Daily

Total Calories 70

Calories From Fat 50

Total Fat 5g 8%

Saturated Fat 1g 4%

Trans Fat 0 g

Cholesterol 0mg

Sodium 590mg 25%

Total Carbohydrates 6g 2%

Dietary Fiber 2g 7%

Sugars 1g

Living Well with Diabetes

Some great reading and helpful tips on Diabetes. It's all on Diabetic Living On Line web site. I've left links below so you can read the entire articles. Check out the fantasic recipes while there!

Living Well with Diabetes
November is National Diabetes Month, and we're raising awareness about diabetes. With good blood sugar control and reducing your risk of complications, you can take charge and enjoy life!
1. Control Your Blood Sugar
2. Lose Weight & Keep It Off
3. Reduce Risk of Complications
4. Get Physical Activity Every Day
5. Take Care of Your Heart

How to Eat What You Love
Diabetes shouldn't equal deprivation. Moderation is key, and following a few tips can avoid bad habits that leave you with feelings of guilt. From pizza to potatoes, we give you options to enjoy the foods you crave.

Favor Whole, Fresh Foods
Processing foods tends to concentrate the calories and carbohydrate. Consider this: For 15 grams of carb, you could eat either 4 fresh apricots or just 1/2 cup apricots canned in juice. And for 15 grams of carb, you could eat either 1-1/4 cups strawberries or a mere 1-1/2 tablespoons all-fruit strawberry preserves....

Read the entire article by clicking the link below.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Today's Menu: "Surf & Turf" Bison Sirloin Steak w/ Jumbo Butterfly Shrimp, Harvest Vegetables, and Whole Grain Bread

Busy, busy, busy!! Spent part of the day at the hospital with my Dad and came home and caught up on all the house cleaning and laundry for my Mom. I've come to the conclusion that they need to make a vacuum cleaner for people in wheelchairs. It's very difficult to run a sweeper in a Hoveround Mobility Chair. Might look into this.

On to dinner! I had Surf and Turf dinner tonight. I used a Wild Idea Buffalo Petite Top Sirloin Steak (5oz.) for my "Turf". I highly recommend Wild Idea Buffalo Products. I love Buffalo or Bison anyway but these Wild Idea Buffalo Steaks are the best. You have your fresh game taste but also almost a sweet taste to the Steak. To prepare it I seasoned it with McCormick Grinder Sea Salt and Black Peppercorn. I then pan fried it in Canola Oil about 4 minutes per side to a beautiful and juicy medium rare. These Steaks are just so good!

On the "Surf side I used Sea Pak Jumbo Shrimp. Of course fresh Shrimp is better but if your short on time Sea Pak is your Shrimp! Easily prepared; just bake at 425 degrees for 13-14 minutes turning over once after 6 minutes. They came out Golden Brown and delicious. I also had Pictsweet Steam’ables Lightly Sauced Harvest Vegetables w/ Roasted Potatoes and a Garlic Herb Sauce. The Harvest Vegetables has sugar snap peas, carrots and roasted red potatoes in a Light Garlic Herb Sauce. A breeze to fix just microwave for 5 minutes and their done and only 90 calories and 17 carbs! For dessert later a slice of Pillsbury Nut Bread topped with a scoop of Breyer's Carnb Smart Vanilla Ice Cream.

Pictsweet Steam’ables Lightly Sauced Harvest Vegetables w/ Roasted Potatoes and a Garlic Herb Sauce

Harvest Vegetables with Roasted Red Potatoes and Herb and Garlic Seasoning
The rustle of leaves, chilly evenings and a good walk in the woods. It’s harvest time, and we’ve brought together sugar snap peas, carrots and robust roasted red potatoes – great vegetables of early fall to steam up for a burst of real stick-to-the-ribs flavor.

Calories 90 Sodium 260 mg
Total Fat 1 g Potassium 0 mg
Saturated 0 g Total Carbs 17 g
Polyunsaturated 0 g Dietary Fiber 3 g
Monounsaturated 0 g Sugars 3 g
Trans 0 g Protein 2 g
Cholesterol 0 mg
Vitamin A 15% Calcium 4%
Vitamin C 8% Iron 4%

Kitchen Hint of the Day!

Salt homemade potato chips by putting them in a paper bag with salt and shaking. This way, the salt is evenly distributed-and the paper absorbs the excess grease. Save calories wherever you can!

A Guide to Healthy "Keep the Cold Away" Concoctions

A Guide to Healthy "Keep the Cold Away" Concoctions

By: Pat St. Claire, CNN's Health Minute
Updated: November 26, 2012

It's technically still fall, but in many parts of the country, old man winter has already arrived. So now might be the perfect time to cuddle up with a good book and a cup of something comforting.

Nutritionists warn drinks can pack a lot of empty calories, so fill your cup wisely.

After a day of being outside in the chilly temperatures, what better time to have a nice cup of something hot and soothing? Tea, hot chocolate, and coffee can warm you to your toes, but which are the best for you?

Green tea:  Almost all doctors and dietitians will tell you there's nothing better than green tea.  Touted as a possible prevention for cancer and heart disease, scientists say the studies aren't conclusive, but the tea does contain antioxidants, that are known to be heart disease busters.  

Hot chocolate: Chocolate, especially dark cocoa, is good for you.  Packed with flavonoids,  cocoa has the potential to prevent heart disease, by opening the blood vessels.  Studies have shown dark cocoa can lower blood pressure, cut out bad cholesterol and even prevent diabetes. Making dark hot cocoa with skim milk cuts down on fat.  Adding two tablespoons of whip cream, can add 15  calories to one cup.

Coffee: Java gets a bad rap because of the caffeine.  But research shows coffee in moderation is good for you.  In a recent study out of Harvard, scientists found coffee may reduce the risk of developing gallstones, colon cancer, Parkinson's Disease and even improve your memory. Add skim milk, and a little sugar and you've got yourself a healthy drink.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Today’s Menu: Seafood Gumbo and Cornbread

I wanted Seafood and I wanted it in a hearty and healthy Gumbo. So I broke out the Luzianne Gumbo Dinner Kit. It contains a packet that contains the Rice, Vegetables, Seasoning, and Roux Mix. I cleared the freezer to make this grabbing anything Seafood!  I added Shrimp, Crawfish, Scallops, and Langostino Lobster Tail Meat Pieces. The Crawfish Tail was leftover from a previous order I had purchased from The Cajun Grocer and I purchased the bag of Lobster from Jungle Jim's market. The Seafood mixed in with the Roux, too good! This was the first time I added the Langostino Lobster Tail Meat Pieces. It fit in perfect the sweetness of the Lobster Meat and the heat of the Red Pepper and Hot Sauce was a perfect match! Plus a lot leftover to freeze and have later. I left the recipe and Gumbo description at the end of the post. For a side I baked a small skillet of Cornbread of to go along with the Gumbo and soak up some of that wonderful Roux. i used Martha White  For dessert later a slice of fresh baked Pillsbury Nut Quick Bread.

Seafood Gumbo


1 Pound of Shrimp, Crawfish, Lobster, and Sea Scallops

6 Cups of Water

2 Tablespoons of Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Pepper, Sea Salt for seasoning

1 Box of Luzianne Gumbo Dinner Kit


*In a 4-5 Quart pot,bring water and Olive Oil to a boil

*Add Luzianne Gumbo while stirring

*Empty half of the Red Pepper Packet into the Gumbo. Put remainder aside.

*Reduce Heat , Cover and simmer for 18 minutes. Meanwhile cut the Sea Scallops in half, peel the raw Shrimp.

*Taste, and if desired, add remaining Red Pepper from packet and Sea Salt. Add the Shrimp, Scallops, Crawfish, and Lobster and. Cover and continue to simmer for 7 - 9 more minutes. Serve.

Luzianne Gumbo Dinner Kit

Gumbo is a thick Cajun “soup,” containing any combination of vegetables, meats, poultry or seafood and served over rice. Just add chicken, seafood or meat to complete a full meal for your entire family in less than 30 minutes.

Rice, Red and Green Bell Peppers, Modified Food Starch, Flour, Onion, Natural Flavors, Hydrolyzed Soy Protein, Paprika, Salt, Monosodium Glutamate, Celery, Garlic Spices, Red Pepper, Sugar, Carmel Color, Sodium Sulfite As A Preservative.

You can turn ordinary chicken, meat or seafood into exciting meals easily with Luzianne Cajun and Creole Dinners. Each Dinner is a blend of rice, authentic Cajun or Creole seasonings and chipped vegetables. All you do is add your own chicken, meat, or seafood, simmer for 25 minutes and serve. There’s a separate red pepper packet to add Cajun spice to suit your taste.

Nutrition Facts
Serving Size 1/5 box (45.4 g)
Amount Per Serving
Calories 160Calories from Fat 9
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 1.0g2%
Saturated Fat 0.0g0%
Sodium 760mg32%
Total Carbohydrates 33.0g11%
Dietary Fiber 1.0g4%
Sugars 3.0g
Protein 4.0g

One of America's Favorites - Fruit preserves (Jams and Jellies)

Strawberry jam, one type of common fruit preserve

Fruit preserves are preparations of fruits, vegetables and sugar, often canned or sealed for long-term storage. The preparation of fruit preserves today often involves adding commercial or natural pectin as a gelling agent, although sugar or honey may be used, as well. Before World War II, fruit preserve recipes did not include pectin, and many artisan jams today are made without pectin. The ingredients used and how they are prepared determine the type of preserves; jams, jellies and marmalades are all examples of different styles of fruit preserves that vary based upon the ingredients used.
Many varieties of fruit preserves are made globally, including sweet fruit preserves, such as strawberry, as well as savoury preserves of culinary vegetables, such as tomatoes or squash. In North America, the plural form "preserves" is used to describe all types of jams and jellies. In British and Commonwealth English most fruit preserves are simply called jam, with the singular preserve being applied to high fruit content jam, often for marketing purposes. Additionally, the name of the type of fruit preserves will also vary depending on the regional variant of English being used.



A chutney is a pungent relish of Indian origin made of fruit, spices and herbs. Although originally intended to be eaten soon after production, modern chutneys are often made to be sold, so require preservatives – often sugar and vinegar – to ensure they have a suitable shelf life. Mango chutney, for example, is mangoes reduced with sugar.


Confit, which is the past participle form of the French verb confire or "to preserve", is most often applied to preservation of duck, goose or pigs, especially Lancashire and Pot-belly, by cooking them in their own fat or oils and allowing the fats to set. However, the term can also refer to fruit or vegetables which have been seasoned and cooked with honey or sugar until the mixture has reached a jam-like consistency. Savory confits, such as ones made with garlic or fennel, may call for a savory oil, such as virgin olive oil, as the preserving agent.

A conserve, or whole fruit jam, is a jam made of fruit stewed in sugar.
Often the making of conserves can be trickier than making a standard jam, because the balance between cooking, or sometimes steeping in the hot sugar mixture for just enough time to allow the flavor to be extracted from the fruit, and sugar to penetrate the fruit, and cooking too long that fruit will break down and liquefy. This process can also be achieved by spreading the dry sugar over raw fruit in layers, and leaving for several hours to steep into the fruit, then just heating the resulting mixture only to bring to the setting point. As a result of this minimal cooking, some fruits are not particularly suitable for making into conserves, because they require cooking for longer periods to avoid issues such as tough skins. Currants and gooseberries, and a number of plums are among these fruits.
Because of this shorter cooking period, not as much pectin will be released from the fruit, and as such, conserves (particularly home-made conserves) will sometimes be slightly softer set than some jams.
An alternate definition holds that conserves are preserves made from a mixture of fruits and/or vegetables. Conserves may also include dried fruit or nuts.

Fruit butter

Fruit butter, in this context, refers to a process where the whole fruit is forced through a sieve or blended after the heating process.
"Fruit butters are generally made from larger fruits, such as apples, plums, peaches or grapes. Cook until softened and run through a sieve to give a smooth consistency. After sieving, cook the pulp ... add sugar and cook as rapidly as possible with constant stirring... The finished product should mound up when dropped from a spoon, but should not cut like jelly. Neither should there be any free liquid."—Berolzheimer R (ed) et al. (1959)

Fruit curd
Fruit curd is a dessert topping and spread usually made with lemon, lime, orange, or raspberry. The basic ingredients are beaten egg yolks, sugar, fruit juice and zest which are gently cooked together until thick and then allowed to cool, forming a soft, smooth, intensely flavored spread. Some recipes also include egg whites and/or butter.

Fruit spread
Fruit spread refers to a jam or preserve with no added sugar.

Jam contains both fruit juice and pieces of the fruit's (or vegetable's) flesh, although some cookbooks define jam as cooked and gelled fruit (or vegetable) purees.
Properly, the term "jam" refers to a product made with whole fruit, cut into pieces or crushed. The fruit is heated with water and sugar to activate the pectin in the fruit. The mixture is then put into containers. The following extract from a US cookbook describes the process.
"Jams are usually made from pulp and juice of one fruit, rather than a combination of several fruits. Berries and other small fruits are most frequently used, though larger fruits such as apricots, peaches, or plums cut into small pieces or crushed are also used for jams. Good jam has a soft even consistency without distinct pieces of fruit, a bright color, a good fruit flavor and a semi-jellied texture that is easy to spread but has no free liquid." – Berolzheimer R (ed) et al. (1959)
Peach blackberry jam (sweet, fruit)
Strawberry jam (sweet, fruit)
Uncooked or minimally cooked (less than 5 min) jams, called 'freezer jam' because they are stored frozen, are popular in parts of North America for their very fresh taste.

Jelly is a clear or translucent fruit spread made from sweetened fruit (or vegetable) juice and set using naturally occurring pectin. Additional pectin may be added where the original fruit does not supply enough, for example with grapes.[12] Jelly can be made from sweet, savory or hot ingredients. It is made by a process similar to that used for making jam, with the additional step of filtering out the fruit pulp after the initial heating. A muslin or stockinette "jelly bag" is traditionally used as a filter, suspended by string over a bowl to allow the straining to occur gently under gravity. It is important not to attempt to force the straining process, for example by squeezing the mass of fruit in the muslin, or the clarity of the resulting jelly will be compromised.
"Good jelly is clear and sparkling and has a fresh flavor of the fruit from which it is made. It is tender enough to quiver when moved, but holds angles when cut.
EXTRACTING JUICE — Pectin is best extracted from the fruit by heat, therefore cook the fruit until soft before straining to obtain the juice ... Pour cooked fruit into a jelly bag which has been wrung out of cold water. Hang up and let drain. When dripping has ceased the bag may be squeezed to remove remaining juice, but this may cause cloudy jelly." – Berolzheimer R (ed) et al. (1959)
Grape jelly (sweet, fruit)
Mint jelly (savory)
Jalapeño pepper jelly (hot)

British-style marmalade is a sweet preserve with a bitter tang made from fruit, sugar, water, and (in some commercial brands) a gelling agent. American-style marmalade is sweet, not bitter. In English-speaking usage, marmalade almost always refers to a preserve derived from a citrus fruit, most commonly oranges, although onion marmalade is also used as an accompaniment to savory dishes.
The recipe includes sliced or chopped fruit peel, which is simmered in fruit juice and water until soft; indeed, marmalade is sometimes described as jam with fruit peel (although many companies now also manufacture peel-free marmalade). Such marmalade is most often consumed on toasted bread for breakfast. The favored citrus fruit for marmalade production in the UK is the Seville orange, Citrus aurantium var. aurantium, thus called because it was originally imported from Seville in Spain; it is higher in pectin than sweet oranges, and therefore gives a good set. Marmalade can also combine or be exclusively made from other type of citrus fruit; lime being a popular variant.

Five varieties of fruit preserves (clockwise from top): apple, quince, plum, squash, orange (in the center)

The term 'preserves' is usually interchangeable with 'jam'. Some cookbooks define preserves as cooked and gelled whole fruit (or vegetable), which includes a significant portion of the fruit.
The terms 'jam' and 'jelly' are used in different parts of the English-speaking world in different ways. In the United States, both jam and jelly are often referred to as 'jelly'. Elsewhere in the English speaking world, the two terms are more strictly differentiated and, when this is not the case, the more usual generic term is 'jam'.
To further confuse the issue, the term 'jelly' is also used in the UK, South Africa, Australia, India and New Zealand to refer to a gelatin dessert, known in North America as 'jello', derived from the brand name Jell-O.

In general, jam is produced by taking mashed or chopped fruit or vegetable pulp and boiling it with sugar and water. The proportion of sugar and fruit varies according to the type of fruit and its ripeness, but a rough starting point is equal weights of each. When the mixture reaches a temperature of 104 °C (219 °F),[citation needed] the acid and the pectin in the fruit react with the sugar, and the jam will set on cooling. However, most cooks work by trial and error, bringing the mixture to a "fast rolling boil", watching to see if the seething mass changes texture, and dropping small samples on a plate to see if they run or set.
Commercially produced jams are usually produced using one of two methods. The first is the open pan method, which is essentially a larger scale version of the method a home jam maker would use. This gives a traditional flavor, with some caramelization of the sugars. The second commercial process involves the use of a vacuum vessel, where the jam is placed under a vacuum, which has the effect of reducing its boiling temperature to anywhere between 65 and 80 °C depending on the recipe and the end result desired. The lower boiling temperature enables the water to be driven off as it would be when using the traditional open pan method, but with the added benefit of retaining more of the volatile flavor compounds from the fruit, preventing caramelization of the sugars, and of course reducing the overall energy required to make the product. However, once the desired amount of water has been driven off, the jam still needs to be heated briefly to 95 to 100 °C to kill off any micro-organisms that may be present; the vacuum pan method does not kill them all. During the commercial filling of the jam into jars, it is common to use a flame to sterilize the rim of the jar and the lid to destroy any yeasts and molds which may cause spoilage during storage. It is also common practice to inject steam into the head space at the top of the jar immediately prior to the fitting of the lid, to create a vacuum. Not only does this vacuum help prevent the growth of spoilage organisms, but it also pulls down the tamper-evident safety button when lids of this type are employed.

Glass jars are an efficient method of storing and preserving jam. Though sugar can keep for exceedingly long times, containing it in a jar is far more useful than older methods. Other methods of packaging jam, especially for industrially produced products, include cans, and plastic packets, especially used in the food service industry for individual servings

Jelly worldwide

*Almond jelly, a sweet dessert from Hong Kong
*Coffee jelly features in many desserts in Japan.
*Jellied cranberry sauce is primarily a holiday treat in the U.S. and the UK.
*Grass jelly, a food from China and Southeast Asia, often served in drinks
*Konjac, a variety of Japanese jelly made from konnyaku
*Mayhaw jelly is a delicacy in parts of the American South.
*Muk, a variety of Korean jelly, seasoned and eaten as a cold salad
*Nata de coco, jelly made from coconuts originating from the Philippines
*Yōkan, a sweet, pasty jelly dessert from Japan often made with beans, sweet potato or squash
There are a variety of jellies in the cuisines of East and Southeast Asia. Depending on the type, they may be sweet or unsweetened.

Making jams and jellies

A jam is a fruit conserve in which sugar and fruit chunks are boiled together. In a jelly, the juice is pressed or boiled out of the fruit, filtered and then boiled again with sugar to reduce and thicken it. It is important to keep in mind that some fruits are better for making jellies and others are better used in jams. Generally speaking, it's easier to make a jam than it is to make a jelly.
Recipe for Jam

*a good quantity of soft, fleshy fruit like strawberries, peaches, cherries, plums, blueberries, brambles
*sugar or sugar with added pectin
*lemon juice

Instructions: Clean the fruit, remove any stones, leaves or other incomestible parts, and wash it. If the fruit is not a small berry, then cut it up into small pieces. Weigh the fruit and add the same weight of sugar to it. If you are using a very juicy fruit, you may prefer to use sugar with added pectin. Pectin is naturally present in most fruits and will cause the jam to "set", but some fruits contain less pectin and some contain more, so it is often helpful to add some.
Sprinkle the fruit and sugar with lemon juice and stir well. Then cover the container and let the mixture rest for at least one hour in a clean, cool place to let the fruit absorb the sugar. After this, pour the mixture into a sufficiently large cooking pot. Traditionally a copper pot is used, but any other cooking pot will do fine. Bring the mixture slowly to the boil on a low fire, stirring regularly. Depending on the fruit, you will need to boil the mixture for about an hour. The jam is ready when it is thick enough. Check this by pouring a drop of the jam onto a cold plate. It should turn sticky and not be too runny.
To preserve the jam well, you should pour it into glass flasks or containers that have been sterilized by boiling them in water. You can also pasteurize the containers by washing them with boiling water. The inside of lids as well as the flasks should be washed if the latter method is used. The jam should be poured rapidly into the still-hot containers. The containers should be sealed with lids. In this case it's best to let the air bubble that is in the flask traverse the still-hot jam by turning it upside-down after the lid has been placed on. This is to disinfect the air bubble. Or, instead of a lid, the jam can be protected by pouring molten paraffin on top of it, and closing of the jar with a paper that is held with a rubber band.
Serve with bread, toast, English muffins, or pancakes.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Dinner Tonight: Top Sirloin Steak & Sauteed Mushrooms w/ Baked Potato, Green Beans, and Whole Grain Bread

A chilly morning around here today, 26 degrees with a wind chill of 19 degrees. I believe winter is very close. I'm just cooking for 2 tonight, my Mom and myself. My Dad is in the hospital. He fell the other day and he's having severe pain in the rib and back areas. Scans and x-rays show no breaks but there is something causing the pain.

I spent some of the day at the hospital but Mom was up there all day so I wanted to make sure I prepared her a good and hearty meal. So I prepare a couple of Top Sirloin Steaks & Sauteed Mushrooms w/ Baked Potato, Green Beans, and Whole Grain Bread. I used a couple of the Costco Top Sirloin Steaks. Which reminds me I have to go to Costco next week, they have their Holiday Prime Rib in stores now and I want to put one away for Christmas. I Really like Costco Meats, for price and freshness. These Steaks have such good flavor the only seasoning needed is a little Sea Salt and Ground Black Pepper. I pan fried them in Canola Oil. I had to fry them a little longer than normal because of the thickness of them. I had to fry the larger of the 2 about 10 minutes total, 5 minutes per side. This one's for Mom, she likes her Steak Well Done. The other Steak was on for about 9 minutes, 4 1/2 minutes per side. They came out perfect! One tender Well done and the other a moist and juicy Medium Rare. I just love the flavor of these Costco Steaks!

For sides I had a couple of Baked Potatoes, Cut Green Beans, and Healthy Life Whole Grain Bread. I always just microwave my Baked Potatoes anymore, Easier, quicker, and just as good as baking them. Just scrub your Potatoes with water removing any dirt and with a sharp knife puncture the Potato about 3 times on each side. This helps the Potato to cook completely inside. For the Green Beans I used my favorite , besides home canned Green Beans, Del Monte Cut Green Beans and we had Healthy Life Whole Grain Bread. For dessert/snack later a 100 Calorie Mini Bag of Jolly Time Pop Corn.

Kitchen Hint of the Day!

Cooking Onion Rings? Make sure you fry only a few at a time to prevent them from sticking together and to ensure even cooking.

2nd Hint of the Day!

For the best French Fries, soak cut potatoes in ice-cold water in the refrigerator for an hour; this will harden them so they absorb less fat. Dry them thoroughly, then fry them twice. First cook for 6 - 7 minutes, drain well, then sprinkle them lightly with flour( this step makes them extra crispy and crunchy ). Then fry them again for 1 - 2 minutes until golden brown.  

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Today's Menu: Toasted Turkey & Swiss Sandwich w/ Creamy Tomato Soup

Still using up some of those great leftovers from the Thanksgiving Day Feast! I used slices of the Thanksgiving Bird and pan fried them just to warm them up and brown them up a bit. I served it on toasted Healthy Life Whole Grain Bread with a little bit of Kraft Reduced Fat Mayo w/ Olive Oil and a slice of Sargento Ultra Thin Swiss Cheese.

For my Soup I used Amy's Organic Light in Sodium – Cream of Tomato Soup. This might be the creamiest and best tasting can Tomato Soup there is! Plus it's only 110 calories, 2.5 grams fat, and 19 carbs. I served with a dab of Daisy Light Sour Cream. For dessert later a slice of my Mom's Splenda made Apple Pie!

Amy’s Organic Light in Sodium – Cream of Tomato Soup

Responding to customer requests, our chefs have created a line of Light in Sodium soups with all the flavor and goodness of our regular soups, but containing 50% less sodium. Contains 340 mg of sodium compared to 690 mg in Amy’s regular cream of tomato soup. No GMOs – No bioengineered ingredients. All dairy ingredients are made with pasteurized, rBST hormone free milk. USDA organic. Certified organic by QAI. Ready serve. Gluten free. This Cream of Tomato Soup is made from organic sun-ripened tomatoes slowly simmered to bring out their natural sweetness. Amy’s dad says it’s the best reduced sodium tomato soup he’s ever eaten. We’re sure that you’ll agree.

Contains 340mg of sodium compared to 690mg in Amy’s regular Cream of Tomato soup.

Ingredients : 0g Trans Fat/No Added MSG/No Preservatives Organic tomato puree, filtered water, organic cream, organic evaporated cane juice, organic onions, sea salt, organic black pepper. Contains milk.

Nutritional Facts
Serving Size: 1 cup
Servings Per Container: ~ 2
Serving Weight: 1 cup
Product UPC: 0-42272-00581-9
Calories: 110 Calories from Fat: 25
Total Fat: 2.5g
Saturated Fat: 1.5g
Trans Fat: 0g
Cholesterol: 10mg
Sodium: 340mg
Carbohydrates: 19g
Fiber: 3g
Sugars: 13g
Protein: 3g
Organic: 10%
Vitamin A: 20% • Vitamin C: 15%
Calcium: 4% • Iron: 10%

Kitchen Hint of the Day!

Who doesn't love a warm sandwich? Luckily, you don't need an expensive sandwich press to make delicious heated sandwiches - just use your microwave! When heating a sandwich in the microwave, you'll get the best results using firm, textured bread such as French or Sourdough. The filling should be heated separately. If the filling is heated in the sandwich, be sure to spread it evenly over the bread and very close to the edges. Wait a few minutes before eating the sandwich, as the filling may remain very hot even if the bread is cool to touch.

Friday, November 23, 2012

Fried Ham and Sunnyside Up Egg on a Cornbread Waffle w/ Hash Browns

Dinner Tonight: Fried Ham and Sunnyside Up Egg on a Cornbread Waffle w/ Hash Browns

For Breakfast, I mean Dinner tonight I went with Fried Ham and Sunnyside Up Egg on a  Cornbread Waffle w/ Hash Browns. I had Breakfast for Dinner tonight and it was delicious! I made a Cornbread Waffle using Martha White Self Rising Enriched White Corn Meal Mix. i made the mix just as you would for Cornbread by mixing the following : Pam w/ Olive Oil Non – Stick Spray, 1/4 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil, 1 3/4 cups Buttermilk, and 2 cups Martha White Self Rising Enriched White Corn Meal Mix. Just mix all your ingredients in a large bowl. I used the Waffle Griddle, just lightly spray the Griddle with Pam Spray. Pre heat it and when ready just add 2 tablespoons of the batter to the center of the Griddle and close the lid. The Waffle is done as the steam starts to stop coming from the Griddle.

For my Waffle toppers and side I had Fried Ham, a Sunny Side Up Egg, and Hash Browns. The Ham was leftover Ham from the Thanksgiving Feast yesterday. I fried the Ham, my Egg, and the Hash Browns on a Flat Top Griddle. It's always great using the Griddle. All you do is spray it with Pam and you skip on having to use any Oil. Then to assemble this fine dinner I just placed the Waffle on the plate and topped it the Sunny Side Up Egg and Fried Ham. Then had the Hash Browns on the side. Breakfast food is one of the ultimate comfort food's. This  dinner hit the spot as they say. For dessert later a slice of Apple Pie! My Mom made this and she uses Splenda to make it and the taste is incredible!

The Martha White Corn Meal

White Self-Rising Corn Meal Mix. Self Rising White Enriched with Hot Rize®

Nutrition Facts
Serving Size 3 Tbsp (31g)
Amount per Serving
Calories 110
Calories from Fat 5
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 1g1%
Saturated Fat 0g0%
Trans Fat 0g
Sodium 440mg18%
Total Carbohydrate 22g7%
Dietary Fiber 2g6%
Protein 2g
Calcium2%Iron6%Thiamin10%Riboflavin6%Niacin6%Folic Acid15%


I LOVE Hillshire Farm Turkey Lit'l Smokies! You can make these anytime of the year but they seem to go together during the Holiday Season. I always use the  Turkey Lit'l Smokies, 90 less calories and 11 less grams of fat per serving over the Beef Lit'l Smokies! I left the links to  Hillshire Farm®'s web site which is full of great recipe ideas. Check it out for some great party or everyday ideas.

Enjoy Hillshire Farm®'s take on this classic BBQ recipe. Just take Hillshire Farm® Lit'l Smokies®, heat em up, and smother them in BBQ sauce. Tasty Snack: Done!

Lit’l Smokies®
Prep Time: 5
Cook Time: 120
Makes: 9 appetizer servings (about 5 Lit’l Smokies each)
Recipe Details
1 pkg. Hillshire Farm® Lit’l Smokies;
1 bottle (28 ounces) barbecue sauce
Open package of Lit’l Smokies® and drain off any liquid; place in 3-quart slow cooker.
Pour barbecue sauce over Lit’l Smokies® and stir to combine.
Cover and cook on HIGH for 2 hours. Turn heat to LOW for serving.

Hillshire Farm Turkey Lit'l Smokies
Made with premium turkey, these delicious Lit'l Smokies® have 2/3 less fat1. A good source of protein, they're a great snack for any occasion. You can wrap them up or simmer them for extra flavor.

Nutrition Facts
Serving Size 5 links (50g)

Nutrition Facts
Serving Size: 5 links (50g)
Amount per Serving
Calories 80
Calories from Fat 36.0
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 4g
Saturated Fat 1.5g
Cholesterol 25mg
Sodium 480mg
Total Carbohydrate 4g
Dietary Fiber 0g
Sugars 2g

Protein 8g


Leftovers from a Thanksgiving meal 

Just a little on America's Favorite Meal after Thanksgiving, Leftovers! Which will be part of my lunch and dinner today.

Leftovers are the uneaten edible remains of a meal after the meal is over, and everyone has finished eating. Food scraps that are not considered edible (such as bones or the skins of some vegetables and fruits) are not regarded as leftovers, but rather as waste material; any remaining edible portions constitute the leftovers.
The ultimate fate of leftovers depends on where the meal was eaten, the preferences of the diner, and the prevailing social culture. Home cooking leftovers are often saved to be eaten later. This is facilitated by being in a private environment, with food preserving facilities such as airtight containers and refrigeration close at hand. Some leftover food can be eaten cold from the refrigerator, while others may be reheated in a microwave or a conventional oven, or mixed with additional ingredients and recooked to make a new dish such as bubble and squeak.
Though leftover or partially eaten food (Ucchishta) is never offered to a Hindu deity, the goddess Matangi is prescribed to be offered this taboo oblation to gain her grace to achieve Supreme knowledge and supernatural powers.
The word "ort", meaning a small scrap of food left after a meal is completed, is not commonly heard in conversation, but is frequently encountered in crossword puzzles.

New dishes made from leftovers are quite common in world cuisine, and many were created in the days before refrigeration and reliable airtight containers existed. Besides capturing nutrition from otherwise inedible bones, stocks and broths make an excellent base for adding leftover morsels too small to be a meal themselves. Casseroles, paella, fried rice, and pizza can also be used for this purpose, and may even have been invented as a means of reusing leftovers.[citation needed] Among American university students, leftover pizza itself has acquired particular in-group significance, to the extent that the USDA's Food Safety and Inspection Service offers, as its first tip under "Food Safety Tips for College Students", a discussion of the risks of eating unrefrigerated pizza, which are considerable.
At some holiday meals, such as Christmas in Western countries and Thanksgiving in the USA, it is customary for the host to prepare much more food than can be eaten, specifically in order to send leftovers home with the guests. Cold turkey is archetypal in the United States as a Thanksgiving leftover, with turkey meat often reappearing in sandwiches, soups, and casseroles for several days after the feast.

Leftovers from a restaurant meal may either be left behind to be discarded by the restaurant, or taken away by the diner for later consumption. In order to take the food away, the diner may make a request for it to be packaged. The container used for such leftovers is commonly called a doggy bag or doggie bag. It is speculated that this derives from the euphemistic pretense that the food will be given to the diner's pet, rather than eaten by a person. However it may also be a corruption of the East Anglian term docky, meaning lunch. The term doggy bag is preferred[citation needed] over take away or take home bag as it was popularized in the 1970s etiquette columns of many newspapers. Doggy bags are most common in restaurants that offer a take-out food service as well as sit-down meals, and their prevalence as an accepted social custom varies widely by location. In some countries, especially in Europe, people would frown upon a diner asking for a doggy bag.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Holiday Favorites Made Healthy

Happy Thanksgiving everyone! Here's a few healthy ways to have our Thanksgiving Day dinner or leftovers from the Diabetic Living On Line web site. I posted a couple of the ideas and left the web link to the recipes and the web site. Enjoy everyone and Happy Thanksgiving!

Holiday Favorites Made Healthy

You don't have to pass up your favorite holiday foods! We've slimmed down everything from mashed potatoes and gravy to turkey and green bean casserole. Our festive, diabetes-friendly holiday recipes prove that classic entrees and side dishes don't have to be loaded with fat, calories, and carbs to be enjoyable. Now that's something to be thankful for!

Herb-Roasted Turkey and Vegetables

Set aside half of this herb-infused roast and vegetable combo to make a turkey and bean soup for a second meal.
MAKES: 4 servings


2 tablespoons snipped fresh parsley
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon snipped fresh rosemary
1 teaspoon snipped fresh thyme
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 2 3/4 - 3 1/4 pound turkey breast portion with bone, skin removed
Nonstick cooking spray
3 cups tiny red potatoes, quartered (about 1 pound)
2 cups baby carrots with tops trimmed and halved lengthwise (about 8 ounces)
2 cups white and/or red pearl onions trimmed and halved (about 8 ounces)
1 tablespoon olive oil


1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. In a small bowl, combine parsley, garlic, rosemary, thyme, salt, and pepper. Set aside 1 tablespoon of the herb mixture.
2. Place turkey breast portion, bone side down, on a roasting rack in a shallow roasting pan. Lightly coat with nonstick cooking spray. Sprinkle the remaining herb mixture evenly over turkey breast portion; rub in with your fingers. Roast, uncovered, for 20 minutes.
3. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, combine potatoes, carrots, and pearl onions; add the reserved 1 tablespoon herb mixture and the olive oil and toss until vegetables are coated. Arrange vegetables around turkey in roasting pan.
4. Reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees F. Roast for 1-1/4 to 1-1/2 hours more or until juices run clear, turkey is no longer pink (170 degrees F), and vegetables are tender, stirring vegetables once.
5. Transfer turkey to cutting board; tent with foil and let stand for 10 minutes before carving. Trim meat from bone. Reserve and store* 10 ounces of the turkey (about 2 cups) and 2 cups of the vegetables for the Turkey and Bean Soup. Serve the remaining turkey with the remaining vegetables. Makes 4 servings, plus enough reserved turkey and vegetables for Turkey and Bean Soup
* Place the reserved cooked turkey and vegetables in an airtight container. Cover and store in the refrigerator for up to 2 days or freeze for up to 3 months.

Nutrition Facts Per Serving:
Servings Per Recipe: 4
cal.(kcal): 231
Fat, total(g): 3
chol.(mg): 69
sat. fat(g): 1
carb.(g): 21
fiber(g): 3
pro.(g): 30
sodium(mg): 219

Three-Cheese Whipped Potatoes
Serve these sophisticated spuds instead of ordinary calorie-laden mashed potatoes. Loaded with ricotta, cottage, and Gorgonzola cheeses, no one else will know this decadent holiday side is diabetes friendly.

MAKES: 8 servings

1 1/2 pounds russet potatoes, scrubbed and cut into 1-1/2-inch chunks
1/3 cup part-skim ricotta cheese
1/3 cup low-fat cottage cheese
1/3 cup crumbled Gorgonzola cheese
1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary, crushed
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 - 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon salt
1. In a covered large saucepan, cook potatoes in enough boiling water to cover for 15 to 20 minutes or until tender; drain.
2. Meanwhile, place ricotta cheese and cottage cheese in a food processor or blender. Cover and process or blend until smooth. Transfer mixture to a large bowl; add Gorgonzola cheese, rosemary, garlic powder, pepper, and salt.
3. Immediately add hot cooked potatoes to the cheese mixture. Beat with an electric mixer on low speed for 30 seconds. Beat on high speed for 2 minutes more. Transfer potato mixture to a serving bowl. Serve immediately.

Nutrition Facts Per Serving:
Servings Per Recipe: 8
cal.(kcal): 107
Fat, total(g): 3
chol.(mg): 8
sat. fat(g): 2
Monosaturated fat(g): 1
carb.(g): 16
fiber(g): 2
sugar(g): 1

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Fried Red Snapper w/ Rice A Roni, Green Beans, and Whole Grain Bread

Dinner Tonight: Fried Red Snapper w/ Rice A Roni, Green Beans, and Whole Grain Bread

Another beautiful day outside again. They say 66 degrees for Thanksgiving Day then a lot cooler, high of 42 Saturday! Ah Ohio weather. Anyway for dinner I had a Red Snapper fillet left in the freezer. After it thawed I rinsed it with water and patted dry with a paper towel. Then I seasoned it with Sea Salt and Ground Black Pepper and then put a light coat of Progresso Italian Style Bread on both sides. I pan fried it Canola Oil, about 3 1/2 minutes per side, until golden brown on both sides! I could eat Fish and Seafood 7 days a week.

For side dishes tonight I had Rice A Roni, Green Beans and Whole Grain Bread. The Rice A Roni Chicken Flavor comes in a 1 serving microwavable cup. Just add the seasoning packet and add water. Microwave for 3 1/2 minutes, cool for 1 minute and stir and serve! The Green Beans was a single serving of Del Monte Cut Green Beans and also had Healthy Life Whole Grain Bread. For Dessert later a Jello Sugar Free Chocolate Pudding.

Rice A Roni Chicken

A family classic! Our Rice-A-Roni® Chicken flavor blends rice and vermicelli with chicken broth, onions, parsley, garlic and other natural flavors to create a delicious side dish that will delight your whole family. It’s the perfect complement to your favorite chicken recipes.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Newman's Own Chicken Florentine & Farfalle Complete Skillet Meal

Dinner Tonight: Newman's Own Chicken Florentine & Farfalle Complete Skillet Meal

Tried something new for dinner tonight, Newman's Own Chicken Florentine & Farfalle Complete Skillet Meal. I came across this at Meijer while wandering around the Frozen Food Section. they had 2 or different selections but I went the Newman's Own Chicken Florentine & Farfalle Complete Skillet Meal. It has 370 calories and 42 carbs, which isn't bad considering it's a complete meal. It comes frozen and contains "Freshly made Pasta and White Chicken Meat in a Parmesan and Romano Cheese Sauce."

You want an easy and delicious Chicken Floretine meal, you have to try this! The only problem is it's a 2 serving meal and if your just preparing for yourself it's tough not to eat both servings! I really enjoyed this. The Pasta, Chicken and Sauce are perfect together. The only things i added was a bit of Sea Salt and a sprinkle of Kraft Shredded parm Cheese. my parents came in later and they finished off the other serving and love it also! I also had a couple of slices of Healthy Life Whole Grain Bread. For dessert later a Jello Sugar free Dark Cherry Jello, at only 10 calories!

Newman's Own Chicken Florentine & Farfalle Complete Skillet Meal
 Complete Skillet Meals

Some made with freshly made pasta and Newman's Own® sauce
We couldn't resist the chance to provide yet another way to make a perfect meal. So this time, we're introducing our new Complete Skillet Meals! Available in 7 delicious flavors, these all-natural frozen meals are a cinch to prepare - just 10 minutes in the skillet and dinner is done! Find them in your grocer's frozen food aisle.

For food safety and quality follow these cooking instructions. Stovetop (Recommended): 1) Pour contents of bag into 12-inch nonstick skillet. 2) Cover and cook over high heat 4 minutes. Reduce heat to medium-high and continue cooking covered, stirring occasionally, until sauce is boiling and all ingredients are hot, about 6 minutes. Product should; be cooked to 165 degrees F. Toss and serve. Microwave: 1) Pour contents into 2-quart microwave-safe casserole. 2) Microwave covered at High 10 to 12 minutes. for high power microwave ovens (1000 to 1300 watts) or 13 to 20 minutes for low power microwave ovens (700 to 900 watts) or until sauce is boiling and all ingredients are hot, stir once halfway through. 3) Let stand covered 2 minutes. 4) Stir and serve. Product should be cooked to 165 degrees F. Microwave ovens vary; adjust times as needed. Casserole may be hot after microwaving. Do not microwave in bag. Keep frozen until ready to use. Do not refreeze. Refrigerate or discard leftovers.

All Natural Ingredients:
Ingredients: Sauce (Water, Seasoning [Parmesan & Romano Cheese Blend {Milk, Cheese Cultures, Salt, Enzymes}, Corn Starch, Maltodextrin, Sugar, Nonfat Dry Milk, Salt, Butter {Sweet Cream, Salt}, Eggs, Lactic Acid, Xanthan Gum, Onion†, Garlic†, Spice], White Wine, Olive Oil), Blanched Farfalle Pasta (Water, Durum Wheat Semolina), All Natural* Fully Cooked Garlic Chicken Breast Strips (Chicken Breast With Rib Meat, Water, Rice Starch, Sea Salt, Garlic, Onion, Pepper, And Celery), Spinach.
Contains: Wheat, Milk, Egg

Nutrition Facts:
Serving Size 1/2 package (340g)
Servings Per Container 2
Calories 370
Calories from Fat 90

Total Fat 10g (15% DV)
Saturated Fat 4.5g (21% DV)
Trans Fat 0g
Cholest. 65mg (21% DV)
Sodium 800mg (33% DV)
Total Carbohydrate 42g (14% DV)
Dietary Fiber 3g (11% DV)
Sugars 4g
Protein 27g

Monday, November 19, 2012

3 Bean Turkey Chili w/ Johnny Cakes!

Dinner Tonight: 3 Bean Turkey Chili w/ Johnny Cakes!

Comfort food Heaven for dinner tonight, 3 Bean Turkey Chili w/ Johnny Cakes! I took my last container of 3 Bean Turkey Chili out of the freezer and let it thaw. * Note to self MAKE MORE CHILI! * Then for dinner all I had to was put the Chili in a small sauce pan and heat it up. As it was being heated I added 4 good shakes of Frank's Red Hot Sauce.

As the Chili was heating I made some Johnny Cakes. It's been way too long since I made any of these. To prepare these all you'll need is: Pam w/ Olive Oil Non - Stick Spray, 1/4 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil, 1 3/4 cups Buttermilk, and 2 cups Martha White Self Rising Enriched White Corn Meal Mix. Just mix all your ingredients in a large bowl. Spray your Pam on a Flat Griddle or large Skillet and preheat on medium low, I use the Flat Griddle. When the Griddle is heated add your batter. You can make the Cakes any size you want from half - dollar size to regular pancake size cakes. After the bottom side turns golden brown flip over and let the other side get golden brown. To serve I placed mine on a plate and topped it with my 3 Bean Turkey Chili.  As I said before Comfort Food Heaven! The Chili is a perfect pairing with Cornbread no matter how you prepare it. At the bottom of the post I left a little history on the "Johnny Cakes". There are various ways to fix Johnny Cakes, I make mine using Martha White Corn Meal Mix. For dessert much later a slice of Pillsbury Nut Quick Bread topped with a scoop of Breyer's Carb Smart Vanilla Ice Cream.

Johnnycakes – Pouring a batter similar to that of skillet-fried cornbread, but slightly thinner, into hot grease atop a griddle or a skillet produces a pancake-like bread called a johnnycake. This type of cornbread is prevalent in New England, particularly in Rhode Island, and also in the American Midwest and the American South. It is reminiscent of the term hoecake, used in the American South for fried cornbread pancakes, which may date back to stories about some people on the frontier making cornbread patties on the blade of a hoe.

Johnny Cakes (My way)


Pam w/ Olive Oil Non - Stick Spray
1/4 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
 1 3/4 cups Buttermilk
 2 cups Martha White Self Rising Enriched White Corn Meal Mix


 Just mix all your ingredients in a large bowl.
Spray your Pam on a Flat Griddle or large Skillet and preheat on medium low, I use the Flat Griddle.
 When the Griddle is heated add your batter. You can make the Cakes any size you want from half dollar size to regular pancake size cakes. After the bottom side turns golden brown flip over and let the other side get golden brown. Serve while warm and enjoy!

Five fabulous new ways to cook your Thanksgiving turkey

This seemed like a good time to pass this along all about different Turkey cooking methods. I left the link at the bottom of the post so you can read the entire article, it's a good one!

Five fabulous new ways to cook your Thanksgiving turkey
10:36 am November 19, 2012, by John Kessler

All those fancy cooks at the New York Times are proposing exciting  ways to cook your Thanksgiving turkey. Why shove your bird into the oven on a roasting pan, they ask, when you know that’s just a one-way ticket to the ho hums?

According to the New York Times, you should STEAM your turkey.

But if that’s too much work, then you should BRAISE the bird or — better yet — SPATCHCOCK the sucker.

We will not be outdone by those commonplace techniques here at the AJC. If you really want to impress guests far beyond any way they might be momentarily wowed by a New York Times turkey, may we propose one of these five exciting new preparation methods:....

Turkey Pan Gravy

Thanks to Mary for passing this along to me. She said the original recipe contained a half an Onion (Diced). She omitted the Onion when she made it. Enjoy, Happy Thanksgiving all!

Turkey Pan Gravy

MAKES: 12 servings


Nonstick cooking spray
Reduced-sodium chicken broth
1 tablespoon snipped fresh rosemary or 1 teaspoon dried rosemary, crushed
1 tablespoon snipped fresh sage or 1 teaspoon dried sage, crushed
1 tablespoon snipped fresh thyme or 1 teaspoon dried thyme, crushed
1 bay leaf
1 teaspoon whole black peppercorns
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper


1. Lightly coat an unheated large nonstick skillet with nonstick cooking spray. Preheat over medium heat.
2. Strain liquid from turkey roasting pan through a fine-mesh sieve into a 4-cup heatproof glass measure; discard solids. Skim off and discard all of the fat from the liquid. Add enough canned chicken broth to remaining liquid to measure 3 cups total liquid.
3. Add broth mixture, rosemary, sage, thyme, bay leaf, and black peppercorns to skillet. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Simmer, uncovered, for 7 minutes. Strain broth mixture, discarding solids; return broth mixture to skillet.
4. In a small bowl, combine 1/2 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth, the flour, salt, and ground black pepper, whisking until smooth. Add to broth in skillet. Cook and stir over medium heat until thickened and bubbly. Cook and stir for 1 minute more. Makes about 3 cups gravy (twelve 1/4-cup servings).

One of America's Favorites - Cornbread

Cornbread baked in an iron skillet

Cornbread is a generic name for any number of quick breads containing cornmeal and leavened by baking powder.

Native Americans were using ground corn (maize) for food thousands of years before European explorers arrived in the New World. European settlers, especially those who resided in the southern English colonies, learned the original recipes and processes for corn dishes from the Cherokee, Chickasaw, Choctaw, and Creek, and soon they devised recipes for using cornmeal in breads similar to those made of grains available in Europe. Cornbread has been called a "cornerstone" of Southern United States cuisine. Cornmeal is produced by grinding dry raw corn grains. A coarser meal (compare flour) made from corn is grits. Grits are produced by soaking raw corn grains in hot water containing calcium hydroxide (the alkaline salt), which loosens the grain hulls (bran) and increases the nutritional value of the product (by increasing available niacin and available amino acids). These are separated by washing and flotation in water, and the now softened slightly swelled grains are called hominy. Hominy, posole in Spanish, also is ground into masa harina for tamales and tortillas). This ancient Native American technology has been named nixtamalization. Besides cornbread, Native Americans used corn to make numerous other dishes from the familiar hominy grits to alcoholic beverages (such as Andean chicha). Cornbread was popular during the American Civil War because it was very cheap and could be made in many different forms—high-rising, fluffy loaves or simply fried (as unleavened pone, corn fritters, hoecakes, etc.)

To a far greater degree than anyone realizes, several of the most important food dishes that the Southeastern Indians live on today is the "soul food" eaten by both black and white Southerners. Hominy, for example, is still eaten ... Sofkee live on as grits ... cornbread [is] used by Southern cooks ... Indian fritters ... variously known as "hoe cake", ... or "Johnny cake". ... Indian boiled cornbread is present in Southern cuisine as "corn meal dumplings", ... and as "hush puppies", ... Southerners cook their beans and field peas by boiling them, as did the Indians ... like the Indians they cure their meat and smoke it over hickory coals.
—- Charles Hudson, The Southeastern Indians.

Home baked cornbread made with blue cornmeal

Types of cornbread

Cornbread is a popular item in soul food enjoyed by many people for its texture and aroma. Cornbread can be baked, fried or, rarely, steamed. Steamed cornbread is mushy, chewier and more like cornmeal pudding than what most consider to be traditional cornbread. Cornbread can also be baked into corn cakes.

* Baked cornbread - Cornbread is a common bread in United States cuisine, particularly associated with the South and Southwest, as well as being a traditional staple for populations where wheat flour was more expensive. In some parts of the South it is crumbled into a glass of cold milk or buttermilk and eaten with a spoon, and it is also widely eaten with barbecue and chili con carne. In rural areas of the southern United States in the mid 20th century cornbread, accompanied by pinto beans (often called soup beans in this context) or honey, was a common lunch for poor children. It is still a common side dish, often served with homemade butter, chunks of onion or scallions. Cornbread crumbs are also used in some poultry stuffings; cornbread stuffing is particularly associated with Thanksgiving turkeys.
In the United States, Northern and Southern cornbread are different because they generally use different types of corn meal and varying degrees of sugar and eggs. A preference for sweetness and adding sugar or molasses can be found in both regions, but salty or savory tastes are sometimes more common in the South, and thus favor using buttermilk in the batter or such additions as cracklins. Cornbread is occasionally crumbled and served with cold milk similar to cold cereal. In Texas, the Mexican influence has spawned a hearty cornbread made with fresh or creamed corn kernels, jalapeño peppers and topped with shredded cheese.

* Skillet-fried or skillet-baked cornbread (often simply called skillet bread or hoecake depending on the container in which it is cooked) is a traditional staple in the rural United States, especially in the South. This involves heating bacon drippings, lard or other oil in a heavy, well-seasoned cast iron skillet in an oven, and then pouring a batter made from cornmeal, egg, and milk directly into the hot grease. The mixture is returned to the oven to bake into a large, crumbly and sometimes very moist cake with a crunchy crust. This bread tends to be dense and usually served as an accompaniment rather than as a bread served as a regular course. In addition to the skillet method, such cornbread also may be made in sticks, muffins, or loaves.
A slightly different variety, cooked in a simple baking dish, is associated with northern US cuisine; it tends to be sweeter and lighter than southern-style cornbread; the batter for northern-style cornbread is very similar to and sometimes interchangeable with that of a corn muffin. A typical contemporary northern U.S. cornbread recipe contains half wheat flour, half cornmeal, milk or buttermilk, eggs, leavening agent, salt, and usually sugar, resulting in a bread that is somewhat lighter and sweeter than the traditional southern version. In the border states and parts of the Upper South, a cross between the two traditions is known as "light cornbread."
Unlike fried variants of cornbread, baked cornbread is a quick bread that is dependent on an egg-based protein matrix for its structure (though the addition of wheat flour adds gluten to increase its cohesiveness). The baking process gelatinizes the starch in the cornmeal, but still often leaves some hard starch to give the finished product a distinctive sandiness not typical of breads made from other grains.

* Corn pone - Corn pone (sometimes referred to as "Indian pone") is a type of cornbread made from a thick, malleable cornmeal dough (which is usually egg-less and milk-less) and baked in a specific type of iron pan over an open fire (such as a frontiersman would use), using butter, margarine, or cooking oil. Corn pones have been a staple of Southern U.S. cuisine, and have been discussed by many American writers, including Mark Twain.
In the Appalachian Mountains, cornbread baked in a round iron skillet or in a cake pan of any shape is still referred to as a "pone" of cornbread (as opposed to "hoe cakes," the term for cornbread fried in pancake style), and when biscuit dough (i.e., "biscuits" in the American sense of the word) is occasionally baked in one large cake rather than as separate biscuits this is called a "biscuit pone."
The term "corn pone" is sometimes used derogatively to refer to one who possesses certain rural, unsophisticated peculiarities ("he's a corn pone"), or as an adjective to describe particular rural, folksy or "hick" characteristics (e.g., "corn pone" humor). This pejorative term often is directed at persons from rural areas of the southern and midwestern U.S. President John F. Kennedy's staffers, who despised Texan Vice-President Lyndon B. Johnson, used to refer to him behind his back as 'Uncle Cornpone' or 'Rufus Cornpone'.

* Hot water cornbread - Cooked on a rangetop, one frying method involves pouring a small amount of liquid batter made with boiling water and self-rising cornmeal (cornmeal with soda or some other chemical leavener added) into a skillet of hot oil, and allowing the crust to turn golden and crunchy while the center of the batter cooks into a crumbly, mushy bread. These small (3-4" diameter) fried breads are soft and very rich. Sometimes, to ensure the consistency of the bread, a small amount of wheat flour is added to the batter. This type of cornbread is often known as "hot water" or "scald meal" cornbread and is unique to the American South.

* Johnnycakes - Pouring a batter similar to that of skillet-fried cornbread, but slightly thinner, into hot grease atop a griddle or a skillet produces a pancake-like bread called a johnnycake. This type of cornbread is prevalent in New England, particularly in Rhode Island, and also in the American Midwest and the American South. It is reminiscent of the term hoecake, used in the American South for fried cornbread pancakes, which may date back to stories about some people on the frontier making cornbread patties on the blade of a hoe.

* Hushpuppies - A thicker buttermilk-based batter which is deep-fried rather than pan-fried, forms the hushpuppy, a common accompaniment to fried fish and other seafood in the South. Hushpuppy recipes vary from state to state, some including onion seasoning, chopped onions, beer, or jalapeños. Fried properly, the hushpuppy will be moist and yellow or white on the inside, while crunchy and light to medium-dark golden brown on the outside.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Bison Smoked Cheddar Burger w/ Baked Crinkle Fries

Dinner Tonight: Bison Smoked Cheddar Burger w/ Baked Crinkle Fries

 I'm having one of those Wild Idea 1/4 lb. Buffalo Burger . I seasoned it with McCormick Grinder Sea Salt and Black Peppercorn. I pan fried it in Extra Virgin Olive Oil about 3 1/2 minutes per side. It fried up perfectly! Great tasting and juicy Burger and as good as it looks in the picture it tasted even better. I topped it with a slice of Bordon’s Smoked Cheddar Cheese and served it on a Healthy Life Whole Grain Bun. I love these Buffalo Burgers!

For a side I had I baked some Alexia Crinkle Fries. Baked at 450 degrees for 20 minutes and I seasoned them with Sea Salt and Ground Black Pepper. For dessert later/snack later a 100 Calorie Mini Bag of Jolly Time Pop Corn.

Wild Idea Buffalo 4 – 1/4-Lb Buffalo Burgers
Prepare for a whole new level of burger. Conveniently pre-made into one-quarter pound patties that are ever so grillable. Dinner ready. Each pack is 1 pound with 4 – 1/4 Lb patties.

Jennie - O OVEN READY™ Whole Turkey

Well I got our Thanksgiving Turkey this morning at our local Walmart. For the second year in a row were going with the Jennie - O OVEN READY™ Whole Turkey. There's just going to be 4 of us so the Jennie - O OVEN READY™ Whole Turkey will be plenty, with some great leftovers! It comes frozen and in it's own cooking bag. You bake it according to it's weight, usually anywhere from 4 1/2 to 5 hours. I've left the product description and web site link at the bottom of the post. Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

Jennie - O OVEN READY™ Whole Turkey
Oven Ready™ turkey from Jennie-O Turkey Store is the only whole turkey that goes directly from your freezer to your oven with no thawing, easy clean up, and no worries. View the easy step-by-step cooking instructions.

Product Features:
Gluten Free
Comes sealed in our Fool-Proof® cooking bag
With Gravy Packet (contains gluten)

Nutritional Information
Serving Size 112 g Total Carbohydrates 1 g
Calories 140 Dietary Fiber 0 g
Calories From Fat 50 Sugars 0 g
Total Fat 6.0 g Protein 20 g
Saturated Fat 2.0 g Vitamin A 0%
Trans Fat .0 g Vitamin C 2%
Cholesterol 60 mg Iron 4%
Sodium 460 mg              Calcium 2%

Cooking Instructions:
Preheat oven to 375 °F.
Remove frozen turkey from white outer package.
Do not remove turkey from FOOL PROOF. cooking bag.
Place in a roasting pan with at least 2" high sides.
Note - Do not increase oven temperature, cooking bag may melt at higher temperatures.
Cut six 1/2 inch slits in top of FOOL PROOF. cooking bag.
Pull bag up and away from turkey, to release vacuum.
Place pan in oven, allowing room for bag to expand without touching the oven racks or walls.
Roast the turkey until a meat thermometer inserted into the center of the breast reaches 170°F.
Note - Meat temperature increases rapidly during last hour of cooking.
Let turkey rest 15 minutes, cut open top of oven bag.
Watch out for hot steam and juices.
Heat gravy as directed on pouch.

11-12 lbs 4-1/4 to 4-1/2 hours.
12-13 lbs 4-1/2 to 5 hours.
Find this product in the freezer section of your grocery store.

Nutrition tip of the week: Boosting your immune system

Came across this article on my favorite healthy drink , Green Tea! You can read the entire article by clicking the link at the bottom of the post. Enjoy and have a cup!

Nutrition tip of the week: Boosting your immune system. It is cold and flu season once again. Even the healthiest people get sick once in awhile.
By Anita Marlay
November 17. 2012 1:00PM
Nutrition tip of the week: Boosting your immune system
It is cold and flu season once again. Even the healthiest people get sick once in awhile.

Green tea has high levels of catechins, another powerful antioxidant that helps fight inflammation.
It is cold and flu season once again. Even the healthiest people get sick once in awhile. But, did you know that some common lifestyle habits might be detrimental to your ability to fight off infections, like colds and flu? Give yourself a tune-up to help boost your immunity.
Diet: Certain foods provide necessary nutrients that can help protect you from illness.
Yogurt. Probiotics in yogurt have been shown to help shorten the length of a cold by a couple days.
Mushrooms. Their beta glucan content helps enhance macrophage activity, which helps ward off infections.
Seafood. It is rich in omega 3s that help increase the activity of the white cells that take care of bacteria and also good source of selenium, a potent antioxidant.
Green Tea. Green tea has high levels of catechins, another powerful antioxidant that helps fight inflammation.
Almonds. They’re a good source of vitamin E, which can help prevent colds……