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Shop the Sale: Loaded Buffalo Chicken Baked Potato Casserole


Loaded Buffalo Chicken Baked Potato CasseroleYes, you read that recipe title correctly.

Buffalo chicken.

Loaded baked potato.

One recipe.

Heaven.

I already have an obsession with buffalo chicken. I cut myself off from writing about it for awhile. I was afraid I was beginning to look a little crazy about the stuff. However, finding this recipe revived my love for the tangy stuff.

This recipe serves seven, and it’s not as caloric as you might think. It’s also economical, as boneless, skinless chicken breasts are on sale this week at Brookshire’s.

Loaded Buffalo Chicken Baked Potato Casserole

Ingredients:
4 large potatoes (3 lb), cut into cubes
1/4 cup olive oil
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 Tbsp fresh ground pepper
2 Tbsp garlic powder
1 Tbsp paprika
1/3 cup hot sauce
2 lb boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1-inch cubes
1 1/2 cups (6 oz) 2% shredded cheddar cheese
5 strips bacon, cooked and crumbled
1/2 cup green onion, diced

Directions:
Preheat oven to 500° F. Spray a 9 x 13 baking dish with cooking spray and set aside.

In a large bowl, whisk together the oil, salt, pepper, garlic powder, paprika and hot sauce; add the potatoes and toss to coat. Using a slotted spoon, remove the potatoes (reserve leftover sauce) to the prepared 9 x 13 dish and bake for 40-50 minutes, until cooked through, crispy and browned, stirring every 10 to 15 minutes.

While the potatoes are cooking, add the diced chicken to the leftover sauce mix and toss to coat. Allow the chicken to marinate in the fridge while the potatoes bake.

Once the potatoes are fully cooked, remove from the oven and lower the temperature to 400° F.

Top the potatoes with the raw marinated chicken, then top the chicken with the topping, followed by the shredded cheese and crumbled bacon.

Return the casserole to the oven and bake for 20 minutes, or until the chicken is cooked through. Sprinkle green onions over casserole and serve hot.

Serves 7

Nutritional Information: Calories Per Serving: 454, Fat: 17 g, Carbohydrates: 40 g, Sugar: 1 g, Sodium: 879 mg, Fiber: 5 g, Protein: 35 g, Cholesterol: 29 mg.

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Healthy Living: Crunch Lovers’ Chicken Salad


Crunch Lovers' Chicken SaladSummer is the time for salads, and one of the things that I think makes them fun, as well as healthy and delicious, is when my salad is a rainbow of colors and a variety of textures.

This salad fills all those requirements and is healthy as well.

The recipe calls for red apples (I use Honey Crisp), but I’ve also made it with green Granny Smith apples as well. Either way, it’s delicious. 

While a little less healthy, my kids like when I marinate my chicken in root beer overnight before I grill it. You can also use the breast from rotisserie chicken, plain grilled chicken, poached chicken or chicken cooked any way you like it. I’ve also swapped the peanuts for almonds. 

Crunch Lovers’ Chicken Salad

Ingredients:
1 (12 oz) bag Dole Chopped Asian Blend salad mix
1 cup chicken breast, cooked and cubed
1 red apple, chopped
1 small cucumber, seeded and chopped
1 avocado, chopped
2 green onions, chopped
3 Tbsp salted peanuts, chopped
2 white corn tortillas, cut into 1/2-inch strips lengthwise then cut in half
extra virgin olive oil
juice of 1/2 lime
chili powder and salt

For the Chili-Lime Vinaigrette:
6 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 Tbsp honey
juice of 1 lime
1/2 tsp chili powder
salt and pepper

Directions:
Preheat oven to 350° F then add tortilla strips to a bowl. Mist or drizzle with extra virgin olive oil or nonstick spray. Drizzle with lime juice, and season generously with chili powder and salt. Toss to coat then spread out on a baking sheet and bake until crunchy, about 7-8 minutes. Set aside to cool.

For the Chili-Lime Vinaigrette, combine ingredients in a jar with a tight-fitting lid or in a bowl, then shake or whisk to combine.

Combine the rest of the ingredients with the vinaigrette then toss to coat. Add baked tortilla strips, then toss again and serve. 

Serves 2

Nutritional Information: Calories Per Serving: 959, Calories from Fat: 649, Fat: 72 g, Trans Fat: 0 g (11 g Saturated Fat), Cholesterol: 64 mg, Sodium: 119 mg, Potassium: 1202 mg, Carbohydrates: 59 g, Fiber: 13 g, Sugar: 28 g, Protein: 32 g. 

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Posted in: Healthy Living


Product Talk: Food Club All-Purpose Baking Mix


Strawberry ShortcakeSometimes I love to make things from scratch and sometimes I like taking shortcuts.

This is where Food Club All-Purpose Baking Mix comes in handy.

On school mornings, or any morning, really, it’s so much easier to open a box of baking mix and add milk or eggs for pancakes or waffles than it is to measure out ingredients when I’m bleary-eyed and haven’t had my coffee yet. Come to think of it, that could be downright disastrous.

Baking mix is so versatile it can be used for waffles, pancakes, biscuits, chicken and dumplings, shortcakes and much more.

I’m going to use it tonight for strawberry shortcake.

Strawberry Shortcake

Ingredients:
2 1/3 cups Food Club All-Purpose Baking mix
3 Tbsp sugar
½ cup milk
3 Tbsp butter, melted
2 cups whipped topping
3 cups strawberries, sliced

Directions:
Preheat oven to 450° F. Combine baking mix and sugar; add milk and butter. Stir with a fork to make a soft dough. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface; knead 20 strokes. Pat dough into ½-inch thick circle. Cut out six 3×3 inch biscuits. Place on lightly greased baking sheet. Bake 15 to 20 minutes or until light golden brown. Cool to room temperature. To serve, split each biscuit, top with 1/3 cup whipped topping and strawberries.

Nutritional Information: Calories 348, Calories from Fat 159, Total Fat 18 g, Saturated Fat 8 g, Cholesterol 33 mg, Sodium 643 mg, Potassium 225 mg, Total Carbohydrates 43 g, Dietary Fiber 2 g, Sugars 17 g, Protein 5 g

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Dine In: Peanut Butter Pound Cake


Peanut Butter Pound CakeThis is baking as I type, and I wish your computer screen had a scratch-and-sniff feature because I assure you, you’d want one for this cake!

Peanut butter is always delicious, and when paired with pound cake, it’s even better. The fun thing about pound cake is that it’s so versatile and this cake is no exception.

Tonight, I am having friends over and grilling dinner, which we’ll enjoy al fresco on my back porch. I planned for a lighter dinner, so we can indulge in a decadent dessert. After the cake bakes and cools, I’m going to slice it into thick pieces, and tonight I’ll put them on the grill to warm them up, then serve with ice cream.

Peanut Butter Pound Cake

Ingredients:
1 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
1 tsp vanilla extract
5 large eggs
3 cups all purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1 cup milk
10 oz swirled milk chocolate and peanut butter morsels
confectioners’ sugar, for dusting

Directions:
Preheat oven to 325° F. Spray a 12-cup Bundt pan and set aside.

Beat butter, sugars and peanut butter at medium speed until fluffy. Add vanilla. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.

In a separate bowl, combine flour, baking powder and salt. Gradually add to butter/sugar mixture, alternating with milk, beginning and ending with flour mixture. Stir in morsels. Spoon batter into prepared pan.

Bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes to 1 hour and 25 minutes, until done. If necessary, cover top of cake with aluminum foil to prevent excess browning.

Cool in pan for 10 minutes. Remove to a wire rack to cool completely. Garnish, if desired, with confectioners’ sugar.

Serves 16

Nutritional Information: Calories Per Serving: 435, Calories from Fat: 170, Fat: 19 g, Trans Fat: 0 g (9 g Saturated Fat), Cholesterol: 90 mg, Sodium: 224 mg, Potassium: 194 mg, Carbohydrates: 60 g, Fiber: 3 g, Sugar: 34 g, Protein: 10 g

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Posted in: Dine In


Family Matters: Pets


Chicken JerkyRecently, two of my friends hosted a wedding.

For their dogs.

No, really, they did.

Their new boxer puppies were wed in a backyard ceremony complete with a water fountain, doggie guests and a lavish buffet of puppy chow.

The bride wore a white bow tied around her neck, which clearly she wasn’t fond of, and the groom donned a sharp new black collar.

After the short ceremony, the couple began their new life together in a custom dog run, complete with a log cabin doghouse. I think they’ll live happily ever after.

What do you get the couple that has everything?

I decided to make homemade dog treats.

These chicken jerky treats aren’t just for dogs, though; you could eat them yourself if you were so inclined.

I packaged them in a Mason jar closed tightly, and although Mr. and Mrs. Boxer did not send thank-you notes, I’m assured they were well-received.

You can make these in a food dehydrator or right in your oven.

Chicken Jerky

Ingredients:
11/2 lb boneless, skinless chicken breast tenders, sliced into strips about 1/4 to 1/8-inch thick
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 Tbsp salt
dog-friendly seasonings, such as parsley, rosemary and sage

Directions:
Rinse off chicken breast strips and remove any fat. Slice the chicken with the grain. Next, coat the chicken slices with your dog-friendly seasonings.

Place the chicken breast strips in an even layer across the entire tray, leaving an equal amount of space between pieces and making sure that they do not touch each other. This is so air can flow between them while they are drying out, which helps dehydrate them.

Once the strips are all set out, place the trays in the food dehydrator, turn it on and set the temperature for 140° F. It will probably take between 3 and 12 hours for the chicken to fully dry, depending on how thick you cut your slices and the exact temperature of your food dehydrator. Check the strips once every hour after the first hour. To do that, simply open up the tray and take one slice out; cut it open with a sharp knife and examine the inside. You should see no moisture at all, and if it is properly dried, the chicken will have the same color throughout. If it is not finished, put it back in for another hour. Once it gets close, start checking once every half hour.

In an oven, bake the chicken strips at 200° F for approximately 2 hours.

Once your chicken jerky is done, store it in sealed containers; zip-locking bags work great for this. Write the date you made it on them. You can also store the finished product in the refrigerator for an even longer shelf life.

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Shop the Sale: Chocolate Coffee Rubbed Steak with Coconut


Chocolate Coffee Rubbed SteakI sometimes get frustrated because I’d like to try new ways to cook steaks, but I catch myself saying, “There’s only so many ways to cook a steak.”

Don’t get me wrong: there’s nothing better than a simple steak, and a great cut of meat lets the flavor shine through. Every once and awhile, though, I like to get creative.

My friend, Sophia, is from Spain and really needs her own cooking show. She’s vivacious and her food has flavor even bigger than her personality. When she told me about this recipe, I knew it would be larger-than-life.

New York strip steaks are on sale this week at Brookshire’s, so try this flavor-rubbed treat today.

Chocolate Coffee Rubbed Steak with Coconut

Ingredients:

2 New York strip steaks (about 1 lb)

For the rub:
1 tsp ground coffee
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp chili powder
1/2 tsp smoked paprika
1 tsp unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tsp coconut sugar
1/8 tsp cinnamon
pinch of pepper
2 Tbsp unsweetened coconut flakes, for garnish

Directions:
Combine the rub ingredients in a medium bowl and set aside.

Cut any large, visible chunks of fat off the steak, and coat it with the rub. Really get in there and make sure the steak is well-covered.

Cover the steak and let it sit for at least an hour in the refrigerator, preferably longer to really infuse the flavor in the meat.

Spray a grill pan (or a regular pan) with cooking spray and preheat on high heat. Also, preheat your oven to 400° F.

Cook the steak until it is nice and seared on each side, about 1-2 minutes per side.

Turn down the heat to medium and continue cooking until it has reached the desired level of doneness.

Once the steak is cooked, transfer to a plate and cover with tinfoil to rest for 5-7 minutes.

While the steak is resting, toast the coconut flakes on a small, parchment paper-lined baking tray. Watch closely as they only take 1 or 2 minutes to get nice and golden.

Serve the steak topped with the toasted coconut flakes.

Nutritional Information: Calories Per Serving: 489, Calories from Fat: 271, Fat: 30 g, Trans Fat: 0 g (13 g Saturated Fat), Cholesterol: 150 mg, Sodium: 408 mg, Potassium: 52 mg, Carbohydrates: 6 g, Fiber: 2 g, Sugar: 2 g, Protein: 51 g.

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Healthy Living: Watermelon Feta Bites


Watermelon Feta BitesI’m always looking for something different to serve as an appetizer, especially during the spring and summer. Dips and spreads are delicious. I’ve never been known to turn down a cheese-laden cracker, but sometimes you’re looking for something a little lighter and a little healthier.

My friend, Jenae, got married recently, and I helped throw a bridal shower for her and the wedding party, family and friends. While planning the menu, I came upon this recipe. I gave it a test run at a Girls’ Night In (ie, on my back porch), and it was proclaimed a hit. I also brought it to the shower, where it was the first dish completely devoured.
It’s light, refreshing and healthy!

Watermelon Feta Bites

Ingredients:
2 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 small seedless watermelon, cut into 1-inch cubes
1 small bunch basil
5 oz feta cheese, cut into 1″ x 1″ x 1/2″ squares

Directions:
Drizzle a serving dish with balsamic vinegar.
Skewer one cube of watermelon, one basil leaf, one feta slice and another watermelon cube onto a decorative toothpick. Repeat until all ingredients have been used. Place Watermelon Feta Bites on balsamic drizzled serving dish.

Serves 6

Nutritional Information: Calories Per Serving: 94, Calories from Fat: 47, Fat: 5 g, Trans Fat: 0 g (3 g Saturated Fat), Cholesterol: 21 mg, Sodium: 265 mg, Potassium: 136 mg, Carbohydrates: 9 g, Sugar: 7 g, Protein: 4 g.

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Product Talk: Sesame Oil


Rainbow Thai Chicken SaladSesame oil is exactly what it sounds like: an oil derived from sesame seeds.

Sesame oil, fragrant and pungent, is used as a cooking oil in South India and as a complimentary flavor in Chinese, Japanese, Middle Eastern, Korean and Southeast Asian cuisines. I would venture to guess that most Americans find the flavor too overpowering to use as a primary cooking oil, but it’s delicious as an added flavor in so many foods.

Some also use sesame oil as an alternative medicine. The antioxidants and polyunsaturated fats in sesame oil have been shown to help control blood pressure and relieve stress.

This recipe, which uses sesame oil in the dressing, might be the most visually appealing dish you’ve ever made. Along with a burst of flavor, it’s beautiful to look at, too.

Rainbow Thai Chicken Salad

Ingredients:

Thai Chicken Salad:
3 cups cooked chicken, shredded
2 cups purple cabbage, shredded
1 cup green cabbage, shredded
1 avocado, diced
1 mango, peeled, pitted and diced
1 (large) carrot, julienned or shredded
1 red pepper, cored and julienned (or diced)
1 cup fresh cilantro leaves, roughly chopped
1/2 cup green onions, chopped
1/4 cup cashews or peanuts, chopped

Peanut Dressing:
1/2 cup natural peanut butter
2-3 Tbsp hot water
2 Tbsp rice wine vinegar
2 Tbsp soy sauce
2 Tbsp honey
1/4 tsp sesame oil
juice of 1 lime
pinch of red pepper flakes

Directions

To Make The Salad:
Toss all salad ingredients together until combined. Drizzle with dressing or toss to combine, then serve immediately.

To Make The Dressing:
Whisk all ingredients together until combined. If the dressing is too thick, add hot water a teaspoon at a time until it reaches the consistency you desire.

Serves 4-6

Nutritional Information: Calories Per Serving: 415, Calories from Fat: 201, Fat: 22 g, Trans Fat: 0 g (5 g Saturated Fat), Cholesterol: 54 mg, Sodium: 369 mg, Potassium: 562 mg, Carbohydrates: 26 g, Fiber: 6 g, Sugar: 15 g, Protein: 30 g.

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Dine In: Spicy Mustard Shrimp


Spicy Mustard ShrimpI had big plans one recent Friday night. I was going to get home from work, put some shrimp on the barbie and relax on the back porch.

Well, you know what they say about best laid plans.

It rained.

No, more accurately, it monsooned. (Ok, I know that’s not a word).

I quickly Googled shrimp recipes I could cook inside and found this gem. The mustard sauce is a perfect pairing for the shrimp.

Spicy Mustard Shrimp

Ingredients:
2 tsp canola oil
1 lb large shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 Tbsp whole-grain Dijon mustard  
1 1/2 tsp hot pepper sauce (such as Tabasco)
2/3 cup green onions, (3-inch) diagonally cut  
1 cup mango (about 1 medium), peeled and diced
1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped  
4 lime wedges

Directions:
Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add shrimp to pan; sauté 1 minute. Add mustard and pepper sauce to pan; sauté 2 minutes, stirring frequently. Stir in onions; cook 1 minute. Remove from heat; stir in diced mango. Sprinkle with cilantro. Serve with lime wedges.

Nutritional Information: Calories Per Serving: 181, Fat: 4.5 g (1 g Saturated Fat, 2 g Monounsaturated Fat, 2 g Polyunsaturated Fat), Protein: 26 g, Carbohydrates: 10 g, Fiber: 2 g, Cholesterol: 172 mg, Iron: 3 mg, Sodium: 247 mg, Calcium: 82 mg.

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Posted in: Dine In


Family Matters: Pools


Kiddy PoolToddlers love them some pools! At least, my boys did. I could fill a plastic wading pool with two inches of water, and they’d be happy for hours. 

Fill it with toys: balls, sponges, cups and anything they can manipulate and play with. Foam squirt guns are great for older toddlers. Cups and action figures occupy kids of almost any age. Water wheels are super exciting and teach baby about physics. 

A few drops of food coloring in your pool won’t hurt anything but will let baby experience something new. 

Shaving cream, marbles and floating plastic fish are also super fun for your little one.



Copyright © 2010-2014, Brookshire’s. All rights reserved.
The products mentioned in “Share, the Brookshire’s Blog” are sold by Brookshire Grocery Company, DBA Brookshire’s . Some products may be mentioned as part of a relationship between its manufacturer and Brookshire’s.

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