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Family Matters: Drink Up!


Transitioning Your Baby from a Bottle to a Sippy CupWhen your little one is about a year old, it’s time to transition from a bottle to a cup.

At this point, they have developed enough fine and gross motor skills to handle a cup and the sucking reflex has diminished significantly.

Some babies are ready for a cup much earlier than others, sometimes as early as six months old.

To start transitioning your baby from a bottle to a sippy cup, start by skipping a bottle-feeding every five to seven days.

Put whatever liquid your child is used to in his sippy cup — whether it’s breast milk or baby formula.

Put a little more liquid in baby’s cup and a little less in his bottle each time.

If your baby is old enough to show his preferences, let him get involved in selecting the cup; he’ll be more likely to use it.

Give your little one the liquids he likes best in the sippy cup and the ones he likes least in his bottle.

You can also go cold-turkey (my preferred method). Just hand your (developmentally ready) toddler a cup one day and go to town!

Transitioning can take anywhere from a day or two days to about a month, depending on the child and the consistency of the parents.



Shop the Sale: Baked Buffalo Chicken Bites


Baked Buffalo Chicken BitesI went to Irving for job training recently, and when we took a break for lunch, a small group of us decided to try a new restaurant recommended by one of the locals.

It sounded like it had an eclectic mix of lunch fare, ranging from salads to sandwiches to burgers to seafood and pasta dishes.

The ambiance was incredible. We sat at a wrought-iron bistro table next to a beautifully landscaped canal. The water was crystal clear, so clear that you could see giant goldfish swimming around. There were palm trees swaying in the breeze that day and tropical flowers somehow in bloom, showing off their pinks, reds and yellows.

It was a lovely setting.

I was intrigued by an item on the appetizer menu and ended up having it for my main meal. Their Buffalo Chicken Bites were deep-fried, but when I came home, I found this healthier version. It’s almost identical in taste. The food at this restaurant was delicious, too. Try it for an appetizer, meal or snack this week when Brookshire’s boneless chicken breasts are on sale.

Baked Buffalo Chicken Bites

Ingredients:

For the yogurt dip:
1 cup 2% Greek yogurt
2 Tbs cilantro, finely chopped
1/2 cup bleu cheese, crumbled
1/4 cup red onions, finely diced
salt and pepper

For the chicken bites:
3 cups cooked chicken, shredded or finely chopped
1/4 to 3/4 cup buffalo wing sauce
1 cup cheddar cheese, shredded
1 bunch green onions, white and pale green parts chopped
4 oz cream cheese, softened
1 cup panko breadcrumbs
salt and pepper
cooking spray

Directions:
Mix all of the dip ingredients together well. Stash in the fridge while you prepare the chicken.

Preheat oven to 350° F.

In a large bowl, combine chicken, wing sauce, cheese, green onions and cream cheese until well-combined.

Mix panko and a pinch of salt and pepper in a shallow dish.

Form chicken mixture into 2 1/2-inch balls (for dinner-sized) or 1 1/2-inch balls (for appetizer-sized).

Roll the chicken balls in the panko and place on a greased cookie sheet.

Before cooking, spray the tops of the balls with cooking spray.

Bake for 20 to 30 minutes, or until tops of bites are brown and crunchy.

Nutritional Information: Calories Per Serving: 393, Calories from Fat: 195, Fat: 22 g (12 g Saturated Fat), Cholesterol: 119 mg, Sodium: 1136 mg, Potassium: 311 mg, Carbohydrates: 13 g, Fiber: 2 g, Sugar: 1 g, Protein: 36 g

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



Mi Blog Hispano: Receta de Ceviche de Pulpo y Calamar


Receta de Ceviche de Pulpo y CalamarMe encantan los mariscos y he encontrado esta riquisima receta que hoy quiero compartir con ustedes para que la disfruten y compartan con su familia y amigos,  y puedan lucirse a lo grande en este tiempo de Cuaresma.

Receta de Ceviche de Pulpo y Calamar

Ingredientes:
1 Libra de pulpo congelado
1 Libra de Calamares
1/4 de Taza de Vinagre
1 Elote desgranado
1/2 Taza de Agua
2 Cucharadas de azucar
1 cebolla chica
1/2 Pimiento Verde
1/2 Pimiento anaranjado
1/2 Taza de jugo de Limon
1 Lechuga baby o romana
1 Cucharada de perejil picado
1 Cucharada de Cilantro Picado
1/2 Cucharadita de Jenjibre en Polvo
Sal y Pimienta al Gusto

Se pica el calamar en trozos medianos y cocina en suficiente agua hirviendo, durante 3 minutos. Se cuece el pulpo congelado en suficiente agua hirviendo, con el vinagre y un poco de sal, durante 15 minutos. Escurra el pulpo y deje enfriar. Corte en cubos medianos. Luego cocine los granos de elote en el agua con el azucar, por 10 minutos, escurra y mezcle con el pulpo y el calamar.

Rebane la cebolla y pimientos finamente en trozos largos y agrege a los calamares y pulpo. Coloqueles el jugo de limon, sal al gusto y un toque de pimiento. Deje reposar durante 20 minutos en la nevera.

Puede servirlo sobre hojas de lechuga y agregarle perejil, cilantro y gengibre en polvo.



Healthy Living: Kidney Health


Kidney HealthNext week (March 12) is International World Kidney Day, and healthy kidneys are important to keeping your body free of toxins and waste.

Every day, your two kidneys filter about 120 to 150 quarts of blood to produce about 1 to 2 quarts of urine, composed of wastes and extra fluid.

To keep them healthy, you have to be able to manage a healthy lifestyle and control diabetes, high blood pressure and heart disease.

The National Kidney Disease Education Program offers these tips to kidneys healthy:

  • Keep your blood pressure at the target set by your healthcare provider. For most people, the blood pressure target is less than 140/90 mm Hg. This can delay or prevent kidney failure.
  • If you have diabetes, control your blood glucose level.
  • Keep your cholesterol levels in the target range.
  • Take medicines the way your provider tells you to take them.
  • Cut back on salt. Aim for less than 2,300 milligrams of sodium each day.
  • Choose foods that are healthy for your heart: fresh fruits, fresh or frozen vegetables, whole-grains and low-fat dairy foods.
  • Limit your alcohol intake.
  • Be more physically active.
  • Lose weight if you are overweight.
  • If you smoke, take steps to quit. Cigarette smoking can make kidney damage worse.
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Posted in: Healthy Living


Product Talk: Talenti Gelato


Talenti GelatoI’ve told you before that I lived overseas for almost four years after I graduated from college.

While I lived in a small hamlet in Germany, I was able to travel extensively.

One of the places I loved the most was Italy. I think it’s genetic; my maiden name is “Brocato,” after all. My dad’s family is from Sicily; my mom’s family is scattered around Northern Italy. I’ve got all kinds of Italian heritage.

My ancestry really is neither here nor there; anyone can enjoy Italy (and should!). In fact, there’s a grotto restaurant on the Mediterranean Sea that I want to bring my boyfriend, Paul, to someday. He’s Irish. Again, that doesn’t matter.

One of the most magnificent things about Italy (aside from the ancient architecture, history, landscapes, art and culture) is the food. I could die happy if I could spend a year in Tuscany learning authentic Italian cooking. I could also probably die happy just eating there.

I will never forget my first visit to Florence. It was there, in the shadows of the Ponte Vecchio on a medieval arch bridge over the Arno River, that I experienced gelato for the first time. Gelato is a combination of ice cream and sherbet in a light, airy, rich and creamy frozen dessert. It was heavenly. I had an espresso flavor and marveled over the dichotomy of light and rich.

Brookshire’s has recaptured that moment for me, in the form of Talenti Gelato. Found in the frozen section (duh), the gelato conjures up that warm spring afternoon on the bridge in Florence. Talenti Gelato is made from scratch with only the finest ingredients imported from around the world, according to the company’s website. They start with fresh milk straight from the farm and fine, pure cane sugar – absolutely never high-fructose corn syrup. They hand-pour the sugar from large sacks, blend in the milk and add the finest ingredients sourced from all around the world to craft their 26 flavors of gelato and sorbetto, their website confirms.

My taste buds confirm this is true.

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Posted in: Product Talk


Dine In: Chicken Cordon Bleu Casserole


Chicken Cordon Bleu CasseroleWhen I was growing up, we always got to choose our birthday dinners. My mom would make us anything our little hearts desired.

I distinctly remember being the complicated kid. Maybe I just had refined tastes. Yep, that’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

On more than one occasion, I wanted chicken cordon bleu. I’m not even sure where I had it for the first time, but I know I loved it.

This casserole is a much easier version of the classic French dish. I introduced chicken cordon bleu to my boys this way one recent Friday night, and they loved it. They don’t even know there’s a much more complicated way to make it, but it’s the taste that counts, right? This dish captures the taste perfectly.

 

Chicken Cordon Bleu Casserole

Ingredients:
5-6 cups cooked chicken, shredded or diced (rotisserie-style is super easy to use)
1/2 lb deli ham, thinly sliced and roughly chopped
1/4 lb baby Swiss cheese, thinly sliced

For the sauce:
4 Tbs butter
4 Tbs flour
3 1/4 cups whole milk
2 Tbs lemon juice
1 Tbs Dijon mustard
1 1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp smoked paprika
1/4 tsp white pepper

For the topping:
6 Tbs butter
1 1/2 cup panko breadcrumbs
3/4 tsp seasoned salt
1 1/2 tsp dried parsley, crushed

Directions:
Preheat oven to 350° F. Butter a 9 x 13 baking dish. Set aside.

Put cooked, shredded or diced chicken on the bottom of the baking dish. Scatter the ham over the top of the chicken. Lay the Swiss cheese on top of the ham.

For the sauce:
Melt the butter in a large sauce pot over medium heat. When butter is melted, quickly stir in the flour to form a smooth roux. Do not brown! Once the roux is smooth and bubbly, slowly pour in the cold milk while stirring briskly to make a smooth sauce. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly until the sauce thickens. Stir in the lemon juice, Dijon mustard, salt, smoked paprika and white pepper. Bring sauce just back to a low boil and turn off heat. Pour sauce evenly over the casserole, being certain to get some of the sauce around the edges of the pan.

For the topping:
Melt the butter in the microwave in a medium-sized microwaveable bowl. Heat it for 30 seconds at a time and stop once it’s melted. Take the bowl out of the microwave and stir in the panko bread-crumbs, seasoning salt and crushed parsley. Sprinkle over the top of the casserole.

Bake casserole uncovered for 45 minutes until hot and bubbly throughout and topping has turned a light golden-brown. Remove from oven and let cool for 5-10 minutes prior to serving.

Nutritional Information: Calories Per Serving: 690, Calories from Fat: 342, Fat: 38 g (21.1 g Saturated Fat), Cholesterol: 192 mg, Sodium: 1847 mg, Potassium: 597 mg, Carbohydrates: 32 g, Fiber: 2 g, Sugar: 9 g, Protein: 54 g

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Posted in: Cooking, Dine In


Family Matters: Does it really matter?


Does it really matter?As I sit in the hospital room where my youngest brother lies battling terminal cancer, I am brought to tears. When I talk to people and they mention fighting among their siblings and families about things that are so small and petty, it pains me. I have such a great relationship with my three brothers. We have always been close and supported each other and our families. I consider this as one of my greatest blessings.

As my brother would say, “put on your big girl panties” – meaning, grow up and learn to just move on when something upsets you. In the picture of life, do those small things that irritate you really matter? We are not promised tomorrow. We must learn to live each day to the fullest and to not leave things unsaid or undone that you would regret. In every situation, just ask: does it really matter?

I promise that if you find yourself (or a family member) faced with a life-threating situation, it will change how you look at life and how you live. So, why wait? Look for the good in each situation and find just one positive when it appears all negative. If you just take a few minutes each day, you will find the glory you are surrounded by and the small blessings you miss daily because you don’t take time to see them.

We are all blessed beyond measure of what we deserve, and it is a shame that it goes unnoticed. Take a moment each day to get on your knees, close your eyes and listen…God speaks to us daily. If we take time to speak to Him, you will view each day and every situation differently. If you don’t think it is for you, try it anyway. I promise you that it will change your life and the lives of those around you. Does it really matter…yes, when prayer is concerned and loving those around you like it is your last day…it does.

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Posted in: Family Matters


Shop the Sale: Chuck Tender Pot Roast


Chuck Tender Pot RoastOne of the best ways I’ve found to get great value for my money is to buy a chuck roast. A two-pound roast serves about eight people, if you calculate a half pound per person.

Well, there are three people in my household so a two-pound roast goes a long way.

I like to start out doing just what the name implies: roasting it.

It’s delicious for a Sunday dinner and doesn’t take forever to cook.

After that, I like to repurpose the roast for sandwiches (sliced with bleu cheese on kaiser rolls), soft tacos (shredded and mixed with salsa or salsa verde) or for stir-fry (cubed and quick-cooked with veggies and served over rice).

See how economical it can be?

It’s delicious, too. Chuck roast is on sale at Brookshire’s this week, so get creative with your meals!

Chuck Tender Pot Roast
Serves 8

Ingredients:
2 lb chuck tender roast
1 cup yellow onions, chopped
8-10 cloves garlic, chopped
3 Tbs extra virgin olive oil
1 tsp rosemary
1 tsp basil
1 tsp pepper
2 tsp kosher salt

Directions:
Allow roast to sit and come to room temperature.

Add olive oil to skillet and heat to medium-high. Add onions and garlic; brown slightly. Salt and pepper both sides of the roast. Remove onions and garlic from the pan. Add roast and sear on each side.

Return onions and garlic to pan. Sprinkle on rosemary and basil.

Transfer all to an oven-safe pan. Roast at 325° F for about 20 minutes per pound. Cook until desired doneness is achieved.

Nutritional Information: Calories Per Serving: 207, Calories from Fat: 102, Fat: 11 g, Cholesterol: 65 mg, Sodium: 658 mg, Potassium: 38 mg, Carbohydrates: 3 g, Fiber: 1 g, Sugar: 1 g, Protein: 23 g

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



Healthy Living: Healthy Mushroom Soup


Healthy Mushroom SoupI was one of those weird kids who loved spinach and mushrooms.

My boys didn’t take to either vegetable readily, and even, as old as they are now, still struggle with both. I can get them to eat raw baby spinach, but mushrooms? Forgeddaboudit!

Mushrooms are meaty, but they are super low in calories. They are dense and filling, but they have zero fat or carbohydrates.

In addition to having protein, they can help fight disease as well, with antioxidants and beneficial dietary fibers such as chitin and beta-glucans. Mushrooms contain just as high an antioxidant capacity as carrots, tomatoes, green and red peppers, pumpkins, green beans and zucchini. They also contain vitamin D.

Studies have shown that Type 1 diabetics who consume high-fiber diets have lower blood glucose levels, and Type 2 diabetics may have improved blood sugar, lipids and insulin levels. The fiber, potassium and vitamin C content in mushrooms all contribute to cardiovascular health. Potassium and sodium work together in the body to help regulate blood pressure.

Try this soup for a low-cal, low-fat, filling meal. You can swap out the butter for the equivalent amount of coconut oil, if you’d like.

Healthy Mushroom Soup

Ingredients:
2 Tbs unsalted butter
1 cup carrots, peeled and diced
1 cup onions, sliced
1 cup sliced leeks, halved and sliced
3/4 cup celery, sliced
3 large garlic cloves, coarsely chopped
2 tsp fresh thyme leaves
2 lb assorted mushrooms, rinsed and thickly sliced
6 cups chicken stock
1 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp cracked black pepper

Directions:
Melt butter in a large stockpot over medium heat. Add carrots, onions, leeks, celery and garlic. Cook and stir until tender but not browned, approximately 10 minutes. Add thyme, mushrooms, chicken stock, salt and pepper. Heat until at a soft boil, then turn down to low heat. Cover and simmer on low heat for 30 minutes.

Remove from heat, ladle into bowls and serve.

Nutritional Information: Calories Per Serving: 106, Calories from Fat: 45, Fat: 5 g, Trans Fat: 0 g (3 g Saturated Fat), Cholesterol: 10 mg, Sodium: 1139 mg, Potassium: 654 mg, Carbohydrates: 13 g, Fiber: 3 g, Sugar: 6 g, Protein: 6 g

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

 



Product Talk: Frozen Meatballs


Frozen MeatballsThis year, for the first time in a long time, I was invited to a Super Bowl party. I’m not sure if the invites tapered off because (1.) I’m not a huge football fan, (2.) I’m known to fall asleep before 8pm or (3.) because I’m not a good cook and no one wants my potluck dish.

Okay, we can eliminate No. 3, but No. 1 and 2 are viable reasons.

However, I was invited this year (I didn’t fall asleep and I knew which two teams were playing), and I brought a delicious antipasto platter that was scarfed up immediately.

My friend, Mathilda, made a dish that took the basic cocktail meatball to a whole new level, though. These bite-sized appetizers were delicious.

I can’t wait to try them myself.

Cheesy Meatball Cups

Ingredients:
2 (8 oz) cans crescent rolls
flour, for dusting
5 oz queso fresco, crumbled
16 frozen meatballs
1/2 cup garlic spaghetti sauce
1 Tbs fresh parsley, finely chopped

Directions:
Preheat oven to 350° F.

Prepare two muffin tins (16 molds total) with nonstick cooking spray.

Extend dough on a lightly floured surface. Pull apart dough triangles and press each inside a muffin mold, covering the bottom of mold and pressing up the sides.

Sprinkle each dough cup with 1 teaspoon shredded cheese. Place a meatball on top of cheese, lightly pressing into the dough.

Bake for 10 minutes. Remove from oven and top with 1 teaspoon of sauce and 1 teaspoon shredded cheese. Place back in the oven and bake for 10 more minutes, or until dough is golden-brown and the cheese bubbles.

Serve with a sprinkle of fresh parsley.

Nutritional Information: Calories Per Serving: 170, Calories from Fat: 86, Fat: 10 g (4 g Saturated Fat), Cholesterol: 13 mg, Sodium: 465 mg, Potassium: 10 mg, Carbohydrates: 14 g, Fiber: 1 g, Sugar: 3 g, Protein: 6 g

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



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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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