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Dine-In: Filet Bourguignonne with Mashed Potatoes


You know how ‘they’ say never to try a new recipe on guests or for an important occasion? Well I never listen.

My fly-by-the-seat-of-my-pants method had never really failed me. Until I got cocky. “Sure, I’m a decent cook. What does it matter if I’m trying this recipe for the first time when I have eight dinner guests arriving in 45 minutes?”

After all, how hard could it be to grill potatoes?

Unless, ahem, you were supposed to parboil the potatoes first. But someone (not naming names) didn’t read the recipe carefully first.

Let me tell you, raw potatoes just aren’t that tasty.

I learned my lesson. Now I at least carefully study each recipe if I’m going to make it for guests or a special dinner.

Valentine’s Day is about a month away and you probably want to make something special for your sweetie. Luckily, there are several weeks to get ready for that meal you’re sure to prepare. Friday nights are the perfect times to try out new recipes – makes the end of the week feel special and ensures no flub ups on the Big Night.

This recipe is faster than the traditional version – perfect for making on a Friday night (or Thursday night if it happens to be Valentine’s Day).

Filet Bourguignonne with Mashed Potatoes
Serves 4 

Ingredients:
1 lb baking potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces
1 cup frozen pearl onions
1 lb beef tenderloin, cut into 2-inch pieces
1/2 tsp kosher salt, divided
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper, divided
5 tsp butter, divided
1 bacon slice, finely chopped
1 (8 oz) pkg mushrooms, quartered
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
1/2 tsp chopped fresh thyme
1/2 tsp sugar
2 tsp no-salt-added tomato paste
1/2 cup earthy red wine
1 cup fat-free, lower-sodium beef broth
2 Tbs water
2 tsp all-purpose flour
3 Tbs 2% reduced-fat milk
Fresh thyme sprigs (optional)

Directions:
Place potatoes in a saucepan over high heat; cover with cool water. Bring to a boil; cook 10 minutes or until very tender. Drain. Return potatoes to pan; keep warm.

While potatoes cook, place onions in a microwave-safe bowl; cover with a paper towel. Microwave at high 4 minutes. Finely chop 1 (2-inch) cube of tenderloin, and set aside. Pat dry the remaining beef cubes with a paper towel; sprinkle evenly with 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.

Heat a 12-inch cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat. Melt 1 tablespoon butter in pan; swirl to coat. Add seasoned beef cubes; sauté 3 minutes, turning to brown on all sides. Remove beef from pan. Add finely chopped beef and bacon to pan; sauté 3 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add mushrooms; sauté 5 minutes or until mushrooms brown, stirring occasionally. Add garlic, chopped thyme, and sugar; sauté for 1 minute, stirring constantly. Add tomato paste; cook 1 minute, stirring constantly. Add wine, and bring to a boil, scraping pan to loosen browned bits. Cook 2 minutes or until liquid is reduced by half.

Add onions and broth; bring to a boil. Cook for 1 minute. Combine 2 tablespoons water and flour in a bowl, stirring with a whisk until smooth. Add flour mixture to pan; cook for 1 minute, stirring constantly. Return browned beef cubes to pan; cook 2 minutes or until thoroughly heated and cooked to medium-rare or desired degree of doneness.

Add the remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt, remaining 1/4 teaspoon pepper, remaining 2 teaspoons butter, and milk to potatoes in saucepan; mash with a potato masher until desired consistency. Serve beef and sauce over potatoes; garnish with thyme sprigs, if desired.

Nutritional Information: Calories: 382, Fat: 13 g, Protein: 31 g, Carbohydrates: 28 g, Fiber: 3 g, Cholesterol: 91 mg, Sodium: 505 mg, Calcium: 65 mg.

View this recipe to print or add items to My Shopping List.



Family Matters: Elementary school


Adding to the list of “I Will Never” is ‘I will never get my elementary school aged child a cell phone’.

Really, what does an elementary school aged child need with a phone? They can’t bring them to school. They’re only going to call me, Dad, 911 or the one other elementary school aged child who has a cell phone.  Right.

That one went down in a blaze of glory at Christmas this year.

My older son, who just turned 11 and is in the fifth grade, didn’t even specifically ASK for a phone for Christmas. What he asked for was an iTouch, which does everything an iPhone does, without the telephone capabilities. He wanted it for games, apps and music. Well, an iTouch starts at about $200 and you still have to add it to a data plan. I didn’t really see the point, knowing that his dad and I had agreed he could get a phone the summer before sixth grade anyway. Why buy the iTouch now and a phone six months from now? Especially when said iPhone 4 was FREE with a contract.

So he got the phone and was beyond thrilled. I really thought his eyes were going to roll back in his head in electronic ecstasy.

But he’s in fifth grade.  He’s 11 years old. We had to talk about rules.

1. Mom and Dad have the pass-lock code, the iTunes log in and password and access to anything, anywhere on your phone, at any time. If we say “hand it over,” we’d better be able to look at anything we want to look at. Immediately.

2. Having a phone is a privilege, not a right. It goes right back into the box in Mom’s locked office drawer if you abuse this privilege.

3.  Never answer a call from a number you do not know. No one accept Mom, Dad and the few family members we entered into your contacts needs to be calling you.

4. Do not give out your phone number to anyone. We can revisit this next year, when social norms shift a bit, but for now, it’s private.

5. Ditto No. 3, but with text messages. And especially do not click on a link on any text that you receive from a strange number.

6. When Mom or Dad calls or texts: answer. Answer immediately. We’re having some issues with this one. He claims he keeps letting the charge run out (I know this is somewhat true). Keep the phone charged and answer it.

7. Do not buy anything off of iTunes without permission. True story, I had a friend whose son racked up almost $300 of iTunes charges before she checked her email to see the iTunes receipts. Oh. Horror. If you want to buy a song, or an app, we’ll negotiate what that app will “cost.”

8. Do not even download a free app without Mom or Dad knowing what it is.

9. Share with your little brother every once and awhile.

10. And if we play against each other in Chess, let Mom win. Just once.



Shop the Sale: Hoisin Pork


I think I may have mentioned recently that I have an affinity for a certain local Chinese-food restaurant.

Luckily for the establishment and unluckily for my waistline, it’s very close to my house. I’ve been going so often for a bowl of Hot and Sour Soup that, by now, everyone knows my name (cue music to popular ’80s sitcom).

Being a regular has its perks.

I went in on Christmas Eve (Hush! Yes, I said Christmas Eve – don’t judge until you’ve tried their soup!) and the proprietor beckoned me over to the edge of the shiny silver counter. He practically shoved a covered plate into my hands.

“Try this,” he said.

Without any further urging, I took the offering to my table along with the soup and eggroll.

I uncovered one of the most delicious pieces of pork I’d ever tasted.

“Not on menu. Special,” he told me.

Yes it was.

I can’t wait to make it at home.

As my fortune cookie predicted (wink), boneless pork tenderloin is on sale this week at Brookshire’s. Try this today!

Hoisin Pork
Serves 4

Ingredients:
1/4 cup hoisin sauce
2 Tbs sliced green onions
2 Tbs low-sodium soy sauce
1 Tbs rice wine vinegar
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 (1 lb) pork tenderloin, trimmed
Cooking spray
1 Tbs sesame seeds

Directions:
Combine first 5 ingredients in a large zip-top plastic bag; add pork to bag. Seal and marinate in refrigerator 2 hours, turning bag once.

Preheat oven to 425° F.

Remove pork from bag, reserving marinade. Place pork on the rack of a broiler pan or roasting pan coated with cooking spray; place rack in oven. Bake at 425° F for 15 minutes. Sprinkle pork with sesame seeds; bake an additional 5 minutes or until a thermometer registers 160° F (slightly pink). Place pork on a cutting board; let stand 10 minutes. Cut into (1/2-inch-thick) slices.

Pour reserved marinade into a small saucepan; bring to a boil. Cook until reduced to 1/3 cup (about 2 minutes); serve with pork.

Nutritional Information: Calories: 194, Fat: 6 g, Protein: 25 g, Carbohydrate: 9 g, Fiber: 1 g, Cholesterol: 68 mg, Iron: 2 mg, Sodium: 574 mg, Calcium: 37 mg



Product Talk: Parsnips


Parsnip Fries with RosemaryParsnips might be one of those vegetables you overlook in the store or you’re not quite sure how to prepare it. So you slide by it in the produce section, trying not to make eye contact.

But parsnips, a root vegetable, shouldn’t be passed over. They’re related to the carrot, but much paler in color and have a sweeter taste, especially when you cook them (I’m not a fan of the raw parsnip myself).

They can be boiled, roasted or used in stews, soups and casseroles.

In some cases, the parsnip is boiled and the solid portions are removed from the soup or stew, leaving behind a more subtle flavor than the whole root, and starch to thicken the dish.


Find these in season in your local Brookshire’s right now!

Parsnip Fries with Rosemary
Serves 6

Ingredients:
2 1/2 lbs parsnips or carrots, peeled, cut into about three 1/2 inch strips
1 Tbs finely chopped fresh rosemary, plus 5 sprigs rosemary
1 large garlic clove, minced
3 Tbs olive oil
Kosher salt, freshly ground pepper
1/2 tsp (or more) ground cumin

Directions:
Preheat oven to 450° F. Mix parsnips, chopped rosemary, garlic, and oil on a large rimmed baking sheet. Season with salt and pepper and toss to coat. Spread out in a single layer. Scatter rosemary sprigs over.

Roast for 10 minutes; turn parsnips and roast until parsnips are tender and browned in spots, 10-15 minutes longer. Crumble leaves from rosemary sprigs over; discard stems and toss to coat. Sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon cumin. Season to taste with salt, pepper, and more cumin, if desired.

Nutritional information: Calories: 180, Calories from Fat: 55, Fat: 11 g, Cholesterol: 0 mg,Carbohydrates: 20 g,Dietary Fiber: 6 g, Sugars: 10 g, Protein:  2 g, Sodium: 140 mg

View this recipe to print or add items to My Shopping List.



Family Matters: Presence


I only see my family, if I’m lucky, twice a year.  This year, I was lucky.

You see, they live in Virginia and I live in Texas. That is too far apart to visit often when everyone works full time, has families and has kids who are busy in activities and sports.

Every year, the whole family converges on the beach together for a week. That’s almost a given.

But this year, my parents came to Texas for Christmas. They left the rest of the family behind (sorry Andy, Juli, Beau, Jim, Lesley, Jameson, Rylan, Greycen, Beth, Becky, Anthony, Ben and Claire!) and flew to our town in the wee hours of Christmas morning. I’m pretty sure they probably passed Santa and his reindeer somewhere near the Mississippi River. They landed, beating the EF-3 tornado that touched down in East Texas Christmas morning. They rented a car and drove to our house, beating the torrential rain and snow storm that covered the land on Christmas day. They came, to visit, and just to be with us: me and my boys. Too often, we think about the holidays in terms of “presents.” This year, I received what I longed for most, the “presence” of the four people I love most – my parents and my children. In the chaos of Christmas gift wrap, scattered toys, new pajamas, video games to play and the buzz of electronics–in a quiet moment, there was pure happiness. Pure presence.

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Posted in: Family Matters


Shop the Sale: Beef Kabobs


PHEW! Made it through the holiday season.

Yes, it was a time of great joy, great celebration and great reflection on the real reason we celebrate the birth of Christ, but it was also exhausting.

I might not speak for you, Dear Reader, but I know that for me and most of my friends, the holiday season was fairly draining.

I’m so blessed to have close friends, a precious family, the world’s most amazing children and I have so many things to be thankful for and look forward to in this new year.

But I’m tired.  The halls were decked then undecked. Cookies made and gobbled up. Feasts prepared then cleaned up. You know the routine. So now it’s time to simplify for awhile.

This easy recipe marinates overnight and then grills quickly. Plus, Boneless Top Sirloin Steak is on sale at Brookshire’s this week.

Enjoy!

Beef Kabobs
Serves 8

Ingredients:

Marinade:
1/2 cup soy sauce
1/4 cup water
3 Tbs thinly sliced green onions
2 Tbs lemon juice
2 Tbs honey
1 Tbs sesame seeds
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp minced garlic

Skewers:
1 (3 lb) lean boneless beef top round or sirloin steak, cut in about twelve 1/2 inch thick pieces (about 30)
Fresh or canned pineapple chunks
2 large green peppers (seeded and each cut in sixteen 1-1/2 inch chunks)
2 large red peppers (same as above)
16 small mushrooms
4 onions, cut in chunks
8 (12 inch) metal skewers

Directions:
Mix all marinade ingredients in a large bowl. Add beef; cover and marinate in refrigerator overnight or up to 8 hours, stirring several times. Drain beef; reserve marinade for basting.

Alternately thread pineapple, beef, and vegetables on each skewer. Grill or broil 4 inches from heat source, turning and brushing with reserved marinade until vegetables are tender and beef is cooked to desired doneness, about 8 minutes for medium.

Nutritional Information: Calories: 500, Calories from Fat: 105, Total Fat: 12 g, Cholesterol: 151 mg, Sodium: 1020 mg, Total Carbohydrates: 43 g, Dietary Fiber: 6 g, Sugars: 30 g, Protein: 56 g



Healthy Living Tuesday: New Year, New You


It’s no secret that the most popular New Year’s resolution is to lose weight.

I know I’ve made the resolution time and time again, this year being no exception.

But this year, in addition to losing weight (because I need to, the scale, not my own vanity, says so) I’m going to focus on being more healthy in general. I don’t think I’m going to watch the numbers as closely as I used to.

Instead, I’m going to focus on being more active and on making food substitutions that are healthier and better for me.

I’m going to drink more water. I’ve gotten really bad about this and it’s something so simple, easy and free to do. Every system in your body performs optimally when you’re well hydrated. For an adult, that’s about 64 ounces of water a day.

I’m going to eat more vegetables and fruits. Both are full of fiber – and help fill you up and keep you satisfied longer than simple carbohydrates or sugars.

And I’m going to try to take a walk around the block every day at lunchtime. It’s not that far. I’m under no delusion that “counts” as my exercise for the day. But I sit at a desk all day long and getting moving will not only clear my head, but it’ll get my blood flowing as well and stave off the afternoon sleepies.

What are you doing in the new year for a healthier, happier you?

 

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Posted in: Healthy Living


Dine-In: Pizza Soup


Pizza SoupRecently, I polled my friends on Facebook and asked them what they liked best to eat on a Friday night. The vast majority of them wrote “anything I don’t have to cook,” or something similar.  But the vast majority of them ALSO wrote, “But it’s too expensive and crowded to eat out right now.”

That’s the entire point of this blog. Sure, we love to eat out and bolster the local economy, but with the holidays just having passed and a lot of, ahem, financial resources allocated that way, and just having spent weeks battling traffic around the malls and thoroughfares, sometimes it’s very best option to dine in on a Friday night.

The overwhelming favorite Friday night food, per my very scientific Facebook poll, was pizza.

I love to make homemade pizza, but I also love to have dinner quick and effortless on a Friday night. Enter the slow cooker and a soup designed to capture the essence of pizza without all the kneading.  All the flavors of pizza blend together all day long and when you walk into the house after a full day’s work, the savory aroma assaults your senses. AND IT’S SO EASY but tastes like you’ve been slaving over the stove all day long.

Pizza Soup
Serves 8

Ingredients:
32 oz beef stock or broth
2 cans (14.5 oz) Great Northern beans, drained
1 can (14.5 oz) Italian-style diced tomatoes
1 can (14.5 oz) fire roasted tomatoes
8 oz pepperoni
8 oz small shell pasta (macaroni or any other small pasta works as well)
4 oz freshly grated Parmesan cheese, for serving
Optional: sliced black olives, onions, green peppers or any other ‘pizza’ topping that would hold up in a slow cooker.

Directions:
Place all ingredients except pasta and cheese in the slow cooker. Cook on low for 8 hours or high for 4-6. During the last 20 minutes of cooking, add the pasta and cook on high. Serve with Parmesan cheese.

Nutritional Information: Calories: 611, Calories from Fat: 139,Total Fat: 15 g, Cholesterol: 50 mg, Sodium: 1053 mg, Total Carbohydrates: 85 g, Dietary Fiber: 21 g, Sugars: 5 g, Protein: 34 g

View this recipe to print or add items to My Shopping List.

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Posted in: Cooking, Dine In


Family Matters: Kids in the Kitchen


My favorite people in the world to cook with are children.

I love their imaginations, creativity, willingness to take a risk, and ability to laugh when things don’t turn out exactly as planned!

Think of your kitchen as a playground.

It’s a wonderful place to explore, create, learn and enjoy time together with your children.

You may not have thought about cooking with your kids as a place to teach more than how to get food on the table, but it’s really a beautiful setting for many lessons:

  • Learning to be patient
  • Maintaining a sense of humor
  • How to handle failure
  • Working as a team
  • Following through on a task
  • Mastering health and cleanliness skills
  • Reading and following instructions
  • Developing math, science and reading skills
  • Enjoying a sense of accomplishment
  • Using your imagination
  • Developing healthy eating habits

The first and most important “rule” of learning to cook is to have fun!  Having fun should be the foundation of every kitchen activity you begin with your children. If it’s not fun or if they fear failure, then they’ll never discover the joy and pleasure of food. It will seem like just another chore, and they might miss out on what could be a wonderful passion in their lives.

Two of the many things I appreciate about my mother are that she gave me a lot of freedom in the kitchen and never, ever told me I was making too big of a mess or that what I created was a disaster. Believe me, I was (and am) messy and made many disasters (think baked iceberg salad), but she continually encouraged me and built my confidence. This is a wonderful gift you can give your own children, and here’s a secret I’ve learned: If I let my kids plan and cook the menu, they are much more likely to eat it! This even works with green beans!

I’ve written a few practical suggestions for your child to remember to keep your time in the kitchen running smoothly:

Ask Permission!
Remember to ask your parents’ permission before you begin to cook. Hey, why not let them be your helper in the kitchen? You will learn things together, and the best part is this: At the end, you will have something yummy to enjoy together as a family.

Be Prepared!
Cook like the pros do. Read through the recipe you want to make and look up any words or techniques you don’t know. And gather together everything you need — both ingredients and tools — before you start cooking. You don’t want to be halfway through the recipe and realize you’re missing something! 

Be Clean!
Cleaning is a big part of cooking. Your food needs to be prepared safely and, if you clean as you go along, when you’re ready to sit down and enjoy what you’ve cooked, you won’t have mountains of dishes to worry about. 

Have Fun!
Most of all, remember to enjoy your time in the kitchen and learn to do things your way. Experiment and make changes that work for you.



Shop the Sale: Bacon Wrapped Shrimp


I hope you had a holly, jolly Christmas! I know I’m still swooning from the after-effects of too much sugar, a lot of presents and a great holiday had by all.

So now it’s time to think about New Year’s Eve.

I know! I know!!! STOP THE MADNESS.

This quick and simple recipe, using the peeled and deveined shrimp on sale at Brookshire’s this week, will elevate your New Year’s Eve party from humdrum to VA-VOOM and have everyone partying like it’s 1999! And you’ll reap the benefits in the new year of money saved.

Bacon Wrapped Shrimp
Serves 12 as an appetizer portion

Ingredients:
18-24 peeled and deveined pre-cooked shrimp
9-12 slices of Brookshire’s bacon (cut in half)

Marinade:
1 Tbs sugar
1 Tbs olive oil
1 Tbs white vinegar
1 1/2 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp curry
1/2 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp pepper
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper

Toothpicks or wooden skewers 

Directions:
Soak toothpicks or wood skewers in warm water for around 30 minutes.

Stir together all of the ingredients for the marinade in a small to medium sized bowl.

Rinse shrimp, remove tails and pat dry.

Add shrimp to marinade, toss to coat and allow to marinate at least 1 hour at room temperature. In a large skillet, cook bacon around 2 minutes until edges start to curl. Do not cook the bacon entirely; it still has to wrap around shrimp. Perhaps 1 minute total. Drain and set aside until shrimp is done marinating.

Wrap bacon around shrimp and skewer or secure with toothpick.

Grill or broil until shrimp is done and bacon is crisp. This takes around 10 to 15 minutes on both my grill and broiler, but you will need to judge this for yourself. Be careful to not overcook.

Nutritional Information: Calories: 162, Calories from Fat: 87, Cholesterol: 107 mg, Sodium: 632 mg,Total Carbohydrates: 2 g, Sugars: 1 g, Protein: 16 g



Copyright © 2010-2017, 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.

Product Talk

Each Monday we feature a new or interesting product.

Healthy Living

Tips on maintaining a healthy lifestyle, every Tuesday.

Shop the Sale

On Wednesdays, get a tip or idea on using an item in the circular.

Family Matters

Ideas for the whole family come to you every Thursday.

Dine In

Stop fighting the crowds, save money and dine in, every Friday.

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