share. The Brookshire's Blog

Shop the Sale: Split Chicken Halves


Sometimes you see something on sale and you know exactly what to do with it. Hot dogs? No problem. But split chicken halves? You hate to miss out on a bargain, but what do you do with them?

Not  a problem! Don’t let the form distract you from the product. Whether it’s a half a chicken or a chicken breast tender, it’s all CHICKEN!

A split chicken half is either a breast and wing, or a thigh and drumstick. It’s like you drew a line right down the middle of a whole chicken. Hey, that’s probably why they call them chicken halves!

The easiest way to cook a chicken half is to slip them in a baking pan, add a bit of chicken broth, sprinkle on some salt and pepper and let them bake. They’re kind of large, so they’ll most likely take 30 to 45 minutes at 375° F. But that gives you plenty of time to cook some pasta and make a salad….for an effortless dinner. And if you know you’re going to have a really busy day ahead, pull out Ole Betsy—your infallible slow cooker—and let her do the work while you’re busy all day.

To make eating easier for your family, pull the meat off the bones once it’s cooked. Shred or chop and it looks much more user-friendly.



Healthy Living: Low-Fat & Gluten-Free


If it’s not one thing, it’s another. Doesn’t it feel that way sometimes? If you use dairy products, you may be using low-fat varieties to help keep your weight in check. But guess what? Many low-fat ice cream, sour cream, cottage cheese and buttermilk products contain modified food starch—and modified food starch contains gluten.

What’s a person to do? In this case, the best bet is to buy the full-fat dairy products and watch your calories elsewhere. But take heart: gluten-free eaters often avoid many of the typical “junk” foods that are high in calories, so you’re already ahead of the game in this respect.



Product Talk: Rice


What’s this week’s four-letter word? RICE. Yes, rice. Talk about plain and simple, rice can do just about anything, and there are more varieties of rice than you can shake a stick at. Brown rice, white rice, wild rice, long grain, short grain….the list goes on and on.

For most of us, the first decision is white rice versus brown rice. Brown rice is whole-grain rice, and the white version had much of the extra nutrition removed—very similar to how bread has white and whole-grain brown types. White rice cooks a little faster, but brown rice is healthier and only take about 5minutes longer to cook.

Check the package of every rice variety for cooking proportions, but much of the time, it’s two or three to one; that is, two or three parts water to one part rice. Some use a bit more or less, so read the label the first time. Rice does best when the water is brought to a boil; rice added; returned to a simmer; cover and simmer until water has been absorbed.

Once cooked, refrigerate rice in a covered container. It also freezes well. Spread it on a baking sheet, in a single layer. Freeze and then transfer to a freezer bag where you can remove as much as you need at a time. This is almost instant rice!

Have you ever made fried rice? It’s nice and simple. Heat a tablespoon of oil in a skillet. Add a teaspoon of minced garlic and a cup each of shredded carrots, frozen peas and leftover chicken. Sauté 5 minutes. Stir in 2 cups of cooked rice and add soy sauce tot taste. Serve throughout and serve! (Don’t forget the chop sticks.)

Or how about green rice salad? Mix 1 ½ cups cooked rice, 1 cup thawed green peas, ¼ cup chopped parsley and about 1/3 cup Italian salad dressing. Mix and serve!

Rice has lots of carbohydrates, which makes it a good energy source. Brown rice has more complex carbohydrates, due to the whole-grained nature of it. Diabetics need to watch how much rice they eat, because of their concerns with carbohydrate balancing. People on a gluten-free diet can enjoy rice in place of pasta!



Dine In: Steak and Potatoes—with Flair!


What’s the favorite weekend dinner meal? It’s gotta be steak! And if you fix it on the grill, there’s no doubt that steak will be at the top of the list! So whether you broil it or grill it, a great dine-at-home meal often includes steak.

But what goes with steak? Of course it’s a baked potato, no question, but how about switching that up just a bit? How about making that a baked SWEET potato? If you’ve been to a steak house restaurant, you know that baked sweet potatoes, with butter, brown sugar and cinnamon taste just about like pumpkin pie—delightful! But did you know that unsweetened, they still taste amazing?

 To speed dinner along, you can make sweet potato fries—and you’ll dazzle everyone. Peel and cut sweet potatoes into French-fry-sized strips. Toss them in a large plastic bag (or a bowl) along with a tablespoon of olive oil. Spread in a single layer on a pan and bake at 375 for 20 to 30 minutes. It’s that easy! And besides the wonderful flavor, sweet potatoes are powerhouses of nutrition, with lots of fiber and Vitamins A and C (great for eyesight and immunity health). And even better: sweet potatoes are on sale at Brookshire’s this week!

Top it off with a salad and fresh fruit for dessert and you have an A-1 dinner, fit for a gourmet, at budget prices…and with great health benefits.



Family Matters: Parakeet Health


Sometimes toddlers like to eat the same food, day after day after day. Mothers wonder what’s wrong with them—because most folks like a little variety in their diet. 

It’s the same with birds, too.  If you have a parakeet, do you offer a variety of foods? It’s easy to fall into the pattern of the same foods, but your bird will thank you for switching things up a little. 

Many experts say that instead of a seed diet, parakeets do better with a diet of special bird pellets. It’s a lower fat diet that keeps birds more active and healthy. If your bird is currently eating a seed diet, you may want to talk to your vet or pet care provider about making a gradual switch to the pellet food plan. 

Pellets (or seeds) should make up about 60 to 70 percent of your parakeet’s diet. The rest can be a mixture of fruits and vegetables, including grated carrot, raw broccoli, apple slices and leafy greens. Vets recommend no fruit seeds, avocados, chocolate, alcohol or caffeine. Remove uneaten food every day and replace with fresh. Birds also need clean water, changed daily. 

You’ll know you have a healthy parakeet if you see alert, sociable activity, dry nostrils and bright eyes, and a body full of smooth, well-groomed feathers. 

(Material collected from the ASPCA Complete Guide to Pet Care)



Shop The Sale: It’s Soup Time!


Who doesn’t love a big bowl of chicken soup on a chilly fall evening? Chicken noodle, chicken and rice, chicken and vegetable, chicken tortilla, chicken and dumplings….there’s a soup for every day of the week. If you remember soup like grandma used to make, there’s one secret for making it happen without stress and fuss. The secret? Use a slow cooker!

They’re inexpensive appliances, and if you don’t have one in the back of your pantry, do run out and get one—it’ll be worth its weight in chicken soup!

On sale this week at Brookshire’s is Pilgrim’s Pride Whole Chicken—the key ingredient to great chicken soup. And with your slow cooker, making it is a snap!

Rinse the chicken, and check inside to be sure there aren’t any giblets (innards) in there. Place the chicken in your slow cooker. Throw in whatever vegetables seem nice and soup-worthy:  an onion, garlic, celery, a potato or two…..this isn’t for the final soup yet, but to create a really flavorful broth. If you like, season with salt, pepper, bay leaf and poultry seasoning.  Add water to fill the cooker about halfway and turn on the slow cooker and let it cook all day (or all night, depending on your schedule).

After 8 hours or so, pull out the cooked chicken and place on a cutting board to cool slightly. Strain the incredibly delicious-smelling broth. Skim off the fat for a healthier soup.

You can chill the broth to make soup later, or proceed: Put the broth in a kettle and add the vegetables you love to see in soup: a bag of frozen mixed veggies, maybe, or corn, green beans….it’s your call. Pull the chicken meat off the bones (it practically shreds by itself) and add. Adjust the seasonings: add salt, pepper or poultry seasoning to your personal tastes. Simmer until veggies are done. Add cooked rice, or uncooked noodles (or whatever other ingredients your recipe calls for), simmer a few more minutes, and your soup is ready to serve.

Wasn’t that easy? And it all started with whole chickens on sale!

Note: omit pasta for a great gluten-free meal!



Healthy Living: Hummus Dip


Have you ever tried hummus? It’s a really popular dish in middle-eastern countries, but it’s getting pretty well-known in the USA, too. Hummus is a bean dip, only instead of black beans or pintos, it uses chick peas. Mash up the chick peas and season them up and you have hummus!

Nutritionally, hummus is amazing. It’s vegetarian and even vegan (no animal products whatsoever) and is low in calories, fat, cholesterol and carbohydrates. Hummus can also be flavored with additions like peanut butter, chopped vegetables, soy sauce….you name it!

So the next time you have friends over for appetizers, bring out the hummus. You’ll look sophisticated and they’ll  love the tasty new treat!

Make-Your-Own Hummus Dip
Makes 2 cups

13-oz can chick peas (also called garbanzo beans), drained
3 Tbs olive oil
3 Tbs lemon juice
½ tsp crushed garlic or garlic powder

Combine all ingredients in a food processor. Serve with fresh vegetables or bite-sized pieces of pita bread for dipping.

Nutritional Information
Calories per 1/4 -cup serving: 101.  Fat: 6 grams  (1 gr. saturated fat), cholesterol: 0 mg., sodium: 135 mg., carbohydrates: 9 gr., fiber: 2 gr.

© 2009, Brookshire Grocery Co.  Nutrient counts are rounded to the nearest whole number.  All dietary and lifestyle changes should be supervised by a physician.



Healthy Living: Five Foods


I was looking through my folder of interesting articles and ran across an old one from Woman’s Day Magazine (July 2007, to be exact) called “The Five Most Underrated Foods.”  These are foods that don’t get the credit they deserve for being healthy.

So what are those 5 underrated foods?

 

  1. Strawberries: one cup has more vitamin C than an orange, plus fiber to help maintain blood sugar levels.
  2. Eggs: Eggs are great sources of choline (good for brain health) and protein, and the dietary cholesterol in eggs has been shown to not damage blood cholesterol levels significantly.
  3. Salmon: All fish are high in heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids but salmon has one of the highest levels.
  4. Avocados: They’re loaded with fat, but it’s the good-for-you monosaturated fat that can actually help reduce your bad cholesterol numbers.
  5. Kiwi: Two or three kiwi a day can help reduce blood clotting, which is a factor in heart attacks. Kiwi is also rich in fiber, which is important to protect against heart disease, diabetes and cancer.

I’m happy to say that I love all five of the five underrated foods. How about you?



Healthy Living: Eat Well!


If you’re new to diabetes, you may feel like your life is suddenly full of CAN’Ts: I can’t have this, I can’t do that….and it’s frustrating. Actually, though, your diabetes diagnosis can be a moment of empowerment. By changing your diet, you’ll be declaring your intent to become healthy—and what’s more awesome than that?

In many regards, a diabetic diet is really just a HEALTHY diet. You’ll be eating pure, natural, wholesome great foods—and that’s something everyone would be smart to consider! Instead of a chicken-fried steak smothered in cream gravy, enjoy a pan-grilled chicken breast, steamed broccoli and a salad—and know that you’re being a positive role model to EVERYONE, not just diabetics. This is a healthy diet that benefits everyone!

Diabetics need to take care to balance carbohydrates throughout the day—that’s crucial. But diabetics don’t need to eat special, exotic foods. If it’s wholesome and healthy, it’s probably okay for a diabetic diet. Bread and desserts are part of that diet as well! Talk with your doctor and your dietician and you’ll find that what you CAN eat is actually what we all SHOULD be eating every day.



Product Talk: School Supplies


Now that school is well underway, you and your children have most likely settled into a routine. It’s amazing how that routine flows pretty smoothly until a sudden disruption throws life into chaos. How often do you get the last-minute news that your child needs to turn in a special project the next day? Maybe it’s the science club volcano or the map of Peru….but regardless, when that call goes out for the super-duper project, it’s the parents who snap to attention and make it all happen. 

The next time you’re on special-project alert, stop by our stores and see what materials we have to help you and your child come out on top. And to get the jump on those last-minute assignments, you can stock up while you’re picking up groceries. A pair of scissors, some poster board, colored pencils and report folders….they’re all right here. Won’t your young student be surprised when you calmly pull out the supplies, instead of panicking? Hey, that’s what parents are for!

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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.

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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