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Family Matters: Going All-natural


Hyland’s Baby Teething Tablets I’m always very aware and very cautious about what I’m putting into my kids’ bodies, and this was especially true when they were babies.

I was first introduced to Hyland’s products when my first son started teething, and he needed relief. Let’s be honest: I needed relief, too.

I turned to an experienced mom whose parenting philosophies were pretty much in line with my own for advice, and she recommended Hyland’s Baby Teething Tablets.

Hyland’s makes homeopathic remedies for babies and kids. Homeopathic is really just a fancy word for “natural.”

According to the Hyland’s website, the product line was started by pharmacist George Hyland in 1903, driven by the notion that the body can call upon its own natural defenses to heal and restore balance.

Homeopathic medicine has been around for a long time, and it’s great to put to use for children and babies because there are no harmful side effects or drawbacks to trying these methods.

Hyland’s teething tablets reduced the pain of cutting teeth for my son and the stress of his discomfort for me. I loved that I could rest assured that what I was putting into his body was natural.

TIP: In addition to using a homeopathic remedy for teething, try dampening a very soft washcloth and putting it in the freezer for a little while. It will be cold enough to help soothe baby but not frozen so solid that it would irritate baby’s gums.



Family Matters: Going Green


Going GreenI was one of those moms who was determined that my child would only eat the healthiest of organic foods.

That went pretty well until he went on a hunger strike. That aside, for many months he did only eat the healthiest foods, and his introduction to solid foods started with avocado.

Avocado is a great first food. I started my older son at four months but then backed off until six months, as he still had a bit of a gag reflex and couldn’t handle solids very well. Four months is the earliest pediatricians recommend introducing solids, and six months is about average for American babies.

At six months after whetting his appetite with rice cereal, I mashed an avocado and let him try it. He loved it. His baby bird mouth opened time and time again, and I had to mash the second half of the fruit as he devoured the first portion quickly.

Avocado is mild. It’s easily mashed or cut into small pieces, and it’s easy for baby to eat.

Plus, it’s chock full of nutrients.

Avocados provide baby with monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats, which are the heart-healthy fats. Avocados also contribute almost 20 vitamins, minerals and beneficial plant compounds to baby’s diet. Baby can eat it plain, mashed or mixed in with cereal, bananas or other first foods.

TIP: Not all babies can tolerate baby wipes; they give some children a rash. It’s perfectly fine to use a damp washcloth or a wet paper towel as well!



SHOP THE SALE: Slow Cooker Carne Asada


Slow Cooker Carne AsadaThere’s frequently nothing better than having a big pan of tender, delicious meat sitting around.

At least, that’s what my friend, Rosa, and her mother, Mama Rosa, believe.

Whenever you go to their house, there is something good cooking, something that smells delicious and makes you gravitate immediately to the kitchen, like a tractor beam is pulling you in and you can’t resist. Really, you can’t resist. As they say in Star Trek, “Resistance is futile.”

The two Rosas (mother has lived with daughter for the better part of 20 years), are a culinary juggernaut. They had a restaurant for a short time until Juan, Mama’s husband and Rosa’s father, died at an early age.

Ever since then, they’ve been cooking in their home.

They usually do this dish in the oven, but even Mama will tell you that it’s too hot to turn on the oven that long during the summer months.

The slow cooker works just as well, and you actually get a juicier product. In fact, I had to drain some of the juice (but best believe I saved it) last time I made enchiladas out of this delicious carne asada!

Chuck roast is on sale this week at Brookshire’s, so don’t fear if you’re making a huge amount. It freezes well, too.

Slow Cooker Carne Asada
Serves 10

Ingredients:
1 (10.5 oz) can beef broth
3 diced tomatoes
2 jalapeño peppers, chopped
1 sweet onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 lb chuck roast
2 Tbs ground cumin
2 Tbs chili powder
2 tsp salt
2 tsp freshly cracked black pepper

Directions:
In a small bowl, combine the cumin, chili powder, salt and black pepper.

Rub it onto chuck roast. Place in a slow cooker.

Place onions, garlic, tomatoes and jalapeños in slow cooker with the meat.

Pour broth over meat and vegetables.

Cook on low setting for 8 hours or overnight.

Shred meat with a fork. Serve in enchiladas, tacos and other dishes.

Nutritional Information: Calories Per Serving: 229, Calories from Fat: 75, Fat: 8 g (3 g Saturated Fat), Cholesterol: 92 mg, Sodium: 661 mg, Potassium: 482 mg, Carbohydrates: 6 g, Fiber: 2 g, Sugar: 2 g, Protein: 32 g

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



Healthy Living: Avocado Pasta


Avocado PastaAvocados remind me of summertime, and that’s always a good thing in the throes of winter.

They’re so fresh and bright as well as a good source of protein and heart-healthy fats that they’re a perfect pairing with pasta.

When you throw in some tomatoes (which are high in antioxidants) and basil (which has anti-inflammatory effects and is a great source of vitamin A), this is a good mid-winter meal to fight off colds and winter’s aches and pains.

The avocado makes a decadent coating for the pasta, and while this is a rich dish, you can eat it without qualms because it’s super-healthy as well.

Avocado Pasta

Ingredients:
12 oz whole-wheat spaghetti
2 ripe avocados, halved, seeded and peeled
1/2 cup fresh basil leaves
2 cloves garlic
2 Tbs freshly squeezed lemon juice
kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1/3 cup olive oil
1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
1/2 cup frozen corn kernels

Directions:
In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook pasta according to package instructions; drain well.

To make the avocado sauce, combine avocados, basil, garlic and lemon juice in the bowl of a food processor. Season with salt and pepper to taste. With the motor running, add olive oil in a slow stream until emulsified; set aside.

In a large bowl, combine pasta, avocado sauce, cherry tomatoes and corn. Serve immediately.

Serves 4

Nutritional Information: Calories Per Serving: 481, Calories from Fat: 334, Fat: 37 g, Trans Fat: 0 g (7 g Saturated Fat), Cholesterol: 0 mg, Sodium: 13 mg, Potassium: 682 mg, Carbohydrates: 37 g, Fiber: 12 g, Sugar: 3 g, Protein: 8 g.

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

 



Product Talk: Campbell’s Slow Cooker Sauces


Campbell's Slow Cooker SaucesI do my grocery shopping over the weekend, but I plan meals for the whole week. The weekly menu always includes at least one slow cooker meal, usually more than that.

My boys have their favorites: pork loin in a cheese sauce, chicken with a mushroom sauce and almost any soup I make, but I love to vary recipes and change things up on them, much to their chagrin.

However, when I discovered Campbell’s Slow Cooker Sauces on the aisle at Brookshire’s (they are near the marinades, not necessarily the soup), I knew I had to try them.

They can’t be any easier. Open the pouch. Pour over raw meat. Cook in the slow cooker. Done. That’s it.

They come in different flavors, like Shredded Beef Taco, Tavern Style Pot Roast, Sweet Korean BBQ, Moroccan Spiced Stew, Hawaiian Pork, Southern BBQ and Apple Bourbon Pulled Pork.

It really doesn’t get any easier, with a huge flavor impact.

Shredded Beef Panini with Cilantro Lime Spread

Ingredients:

Meat:
1 (12 oz) pouch Campbell’s® Shredded Beef Taco Slow Cooker Sauce
2 to 3 lb boneless beef chuck

Sandwiches:
2 cups warmed slow-cooked shredded beef
1/2 cup light mayonnaise
1 Tbs lime juice
1 Tbs fresh cilantro, chopped
8 slices Pepperidge Farm® Farmhouse™ Sourdough Bread
8 slices sharp cheddar cheese (thinly sliced)
8 tomato slices
8 slices bacon, cooked and drained
1 cup packed baby spinach or arugula

Directions:
Pour slow cooker sauce over beef in a 6-quart slow cooker; cook on low heat setting for at least 7 hours. Shred beef.

Heat a panini maker. Drain any excess liquid from the beef. Stir the mayonnaise, lime juice and cilantro in a small bowl.

Spread 1 tablespoon mayonnaise mixture on each bread slice. Layer 4 slices bread with 1 cheese slice, 1/2 cup beef, 2 tomato slices, 2 bacon slices and 1/4 cup spinach. Top with the remaining cheese and bread slices, mayonnaise-side down. Spray the sandwiches with vegetable cooking spray.

Add the sandwiches to the panini maker in batches, and cook for 5 minutes or until lightly browned and the cheese is melted.

Note: If you don’t have a panini maker, prepare and cook as if making a grilled cheese sandwich.

Nutritional Information: Calories Per Serving: 895, Calories from Fat: 383, Fat: 43 g, Trans Fat: 0 g (18 g Saturated Fat), Cholesterol: 178 mg, Sodium: 2163 mg, Potassium: 695 mg, Carbohydrates: 63 g, Fiber: 4 g, Sugar: 10 g, Protein: 62 g

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

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Posted in: Product Talk


Dine In: Slow Cooker Chicken Marsala


Slow Cooker Chicken Marsala‘Twas the night after Christmas when all through the house, not a creature was stirring, especially not Mom or Dad!

(Who were worn OUT from holiday celebrations!)

The day after Christmas SCREAMS for a slow-cooker dish that requires little effort or prior planning. This chicken marsala is just what Santa delivered.

It’s rich, decadent and befitting of the holiday season, but it pays homage to the inevitable exhaustion that seeps into your bones about 3PM on Christmas Day.

It calls for marsala wine, which would make it genuine, but hey, let’s be real: Use whatever leftover white wine you have from Christmas dinner. It still works.

This easy dish is a true present for the holiday season.

If you still have family and friends visiting, enjoy their presence with this present.

Slow Cooker Chicken Marsala
Serves 6

Ingredients:
1 Tbs olive oil
2 Tbs shallots, chopped
2 garlic cloves, chopped
2 Tbs all purpose flour
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (about 5 oz each)
8 oz baby bella mushrooms, sliced
3/4 cup marsala wine
2 tsp cornstarch
2 tsp chopped parsley, for garnish (optional)

Directions:
Coat slow cooker insert with nonstick cooking spray. Combine the olive oil, shallots and garlic in bottom of slow cooker.

In a shallow dish, stir together the flour, salt and black pepper. Pound the chicken to an even thickness, coat it with the flour mixture and add to the slow cooker. Scatter mushrooms over chicken and add the marsala.

Cover and cook on low heat setting for 4 hours or until the chicken is tender. To thicken the sauce, turn the slow cooker up to high heat setting. Combine the cornstarch with 2 teaspoons water and stir it into the chicken mixture. Cover and cook until the sauce has thickened 10 to 25 minutes. Stir in parsley. Season to taste with salt and pepper; serve.

Nutritional Information: Calories Per Serving: 235, Fat: 5 g, Carbohydrates: 9 g, Fiber: 0 g, Protein: 29 g.

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Posted in: Cooking, Dine In


Family Matters: Being Different Makes You Unique


FamilyRaising four girls is a challenge, but we have been blessed with extremely good children. Though they are not perfect, we are proud to call them ours. As the girls have grown, we have tried to instill in them that they are each unique in their own way. Some days I wonder how they were all born from the same mother…you know what I am talking about! They have unique personalities, different ways of handling situations, different thinking, different styles, etc.

In today’s culture, kids seem to “follow” others so they can “fit in” or “stand out” from the crowd. We have always taught our girls that being different is not a bad thing. It makes you unique from others, and you normally stand out because of it. Of course, if you stand out, you need to make sure you are setting a good example for those watching. Your daily actions can ultimately change someone’s life.

For our girls, that different and unique person they work daily to portray to others is Christ-centered, compassionate, humble, responsible, kind, grateful, bold in their beliefs, and full of patience and hope. We teach them to have a servant’s heart, find the good in every situation, persevere in all they do and that through it all they will reflect their passion for the Lord.

Lesson for us all: be content with your life and give thanks daily for every situation because it is those things that make us who we are. Pray daily (multiple times if you have kids), and live a life full of faithfulness – always trust you are in His hands. We are each different and unique. He planned it just that way. Strive daily to portray what you believe. Live your life so that others look at you and want whatever it is that makes you the special and unique person they see.

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Posted in: Family Matters


Mi Blog Hispano: Cuidando El Corazón


Alimentación SaludableCuando hablamos de cuidar el corazón, para muchos, lo primero que se nos viene a la mente es pensar en asuntos sentimentales; y a pesar de que mantener el corazón feliz y contento, es muy importante, nutrirlo adecuadamente es vital para tener  una vida saludable.

Las enfermedades del corazón son una de las principales causas de muerte del ser humano, así que una de las cosas en donde más tenemos que concentrarnos,  es en  cuidarlo  y para esto es necesario aprender a cómo vivir de una forma adecuada donde cuidemos nuestro corazón.

Una de las cosas más importantes para cuidar el corazón es mantener una alimentación sana, ya que los problemas cardiovasculares se generan debido a una placa de grasa que se adhiere gradualmente a las paredes internas de las arterias, lo cual va obstruyendo el fluido de la sangre, disminuyendo el aporte de nutrientes a todas las células del organismo.

La salud cardiovascular se logra consumiendo alimentos adecuados y teniendo un estilo de vida equilibrado, haciendo ejercicios y evitando el estrés. A continuación voy a compartir con ustedes cuales son los mejores nutrientes para tener un corazón saludable.

  • Fitoestrógenos: se encuentran en ciertas plantas y ayudan a disolver los coágulos de sangre, disminuyen los niveles de colesterol malo (LDL), triglicéridos y la presión arterial. Brindan al organismo efectos similares a los que proporciona el estrógeno. Los encontramos en: Alfalfa, Espinacas, semillas de Linaza, Soya, semillas de Sésamo, Pistacho, semillas de Girasol, Cebada, Arroz Integral, Lentejas, Habas, Garbanzos, Guisantes, Dátiles secos, Orejones, Ciruelas Pasas, Melocotón, Granadas, Ajo, Cacahuate, Sandia, Fresas,  Arándanos, Frambuesas, Calabazas, Brócoli, Col, Hinojo, Cebollas, Tomillo, Regaliz, Verbena, Vino Tinto, Café, Té, Cerveza y el Aceite de Oliva.
  • Fitoesteroles: son grasas que se encuentran en semillas, nueces y germinados; pueden diluir grasas malignas y evitar que se adhieran a las paredes de las arterias. Los encontramos en: la Lechuga, Acelga, Espinaca, Brócoli, Pepinos, Zanahoria, Zapallo, Choclo, semillas de Calabazas, Soya, Lácteos, Yogures, Margarinas y Arroz Integral.
  • Carotenoides: son antioxidantes y le dan ese color vibrante a las frutas y verduras. Su función es reparar el daño celular y retrasar el envejecimiento. Los encontramos en: Zanahoria, Repollo crespo, Berro, Espinaca, Pimiento rojo, Acelga, Albaricoque, Tomate y Lechugas.
  • Polifenoles: protegen específicamente los vasos sanguíneos, reducen la presión arterial y reducen los niveles de colesterol dañino (LDL). Los encontramos en: Té, Vino Tinto, Judías, Guisantes, Lentejas, Remolacha, Berenjena, Uva, Fresas, Frambuesas, Granadas, Arándanos, Tomate,   Cebolla, Ajos, Pimientos, Cereales, Frutos secos y Semillas, Chocolate, Cacao, Yerbamate, Cerveza y Aceite de Oliva.
  • Ácidos Grasos Omega 3 y 6: contribuyen a reforzar el sistema inmune, reduce los coágulos sanguíneos y protegen contra infartos. Los encontramos en: Pescado, Mariscos, Tofu, Almendras, Nueces, Linaza.
  • Vitaminas del Complejo B: como el Ácido Fólico (B12), o la Niacina (B3). Evitan el endurecimiento de las arterias y elevan el colesterol bueno. Los encontramos en:  Cereales, Granos Integrales, Harina Blanca, Carnes, Pescados, alimentos ricos en Proteínas como los Frutos Secos, Lentejas, Queso, Champiñones, Coco, Levadura de Cerveza, Salvado de Trigo, Germen de Trigo, Harina y Pan de Trigo, Arroz Integral y Huevos.
  • Vitaminas C y E: son poderosísimos antioxidantes que protegen a las células de los radicales libres y mejoran la calidad de los glóbulos rojos. Se encuentran en: Frutas y Jugos Cítricos, Pimentón Verde, Tomates, Brócoli, Papa, Jugo de Camote, Cantalupo, Mango, Papaya, Pimentones Rojos y Piña.
  • Magnesio, Calcio y Potasio: ayudan a mantener la presión arterial en los niveles óptimos y a la adecuada contracción del musculo cardiaco.
  • Otros tips beneficiosos: Evita cocinar con mantequilla y mantecas animales y cámbialas por aceites ligeros y transparentes. No consumas sodio en exceso, retira el salero de la mesa y sazona tus platillos con hierbas de olor y especias. Selecciona carnes sin grasa y sin piel y trata de elevar el consumo de pescados saludables como el Salmón y las sardinas a tres veces por semana. Consume tus alimentos lo más frescos y naturales posible, ya que estas cuentan con una gran cantidad de antioxidantes. Elige métodos de coacción saludables, como hervir, hornear, cocinar al vapor o a la parrilla en lugar de freír.


Shop the Sale: Steak Bites


Steak BitesSirloin steak is one of the most classic and delicious meats to enjoy. A top sirloin, taken from the upper portion of the cut, is tender, lean and lends itself well to being grilled.

There’s nothing better than a good grilled steak, but I also love to try meat in various ways, especially when it’s on sale, like this week at Brookshire’s.

Steak bites are a good alternative. You don’t mess with the integrity of the meat, but you get a different kind of meal out of a good cut of steak!

This would be delicious served with rice or over a baked potato with a huge green salad. This is based on a Pioneer Woman recipe; I just added the garlic because everything tastes better with garlic.

Steak Bites
Serves 4

Ingredients:
1 lb top sirloin steak
1 tsp each sea salt and fresh ground black pepper
4 Tbs butter
2 cloves garlic, minced

Directions:
Trim off the excess fat from the meat, and then cut cubes about 1 inch in size.

Sprinkle with sea salt and freshly ground pepper.

Heat a skillet (preferably cast iron) over medium-high to high heat. As the pan heats, add about 2 tablespoons butter to the skillet. Allow the butter to melt and then get very brown before you add the meat. Add the garlic.

Place some of the meat in the pan in a single layer. It should sizzle loudly when it hits the pan. If it doesn’t, the pan isn’t hot enough. Don’t stir or disrupt the meat for 30 to 45 seconds. You want it to sizzle and brown on one side. Scoop as many steak bites as you can with your spatula and flip them over. Repeat until all the meat is turned. Cook for an additional 30 to 45 seconds, just long enough to sear the outside of the meat but NOT cook the inside.

Remove the meat to a clean plate. Add a little more butter to the pan and repeat the cooking process with the next batch just as before. Lastly, when all the meat is nicely browned and removed to the plate, pour all that browned/blackened butter all over the meat.

Nutritional Information: Calories Per Serving: 315, Calories from Fat: 167, Fat: 19 g (10 g Saturated Fat), Cholesterol: 132 mg, Sodium: 625 mg, Potassium: 466 mg, Carbohydrates: 1 g, Protein: 35 g

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

 

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Posted in: Shop the Sale


Healthy Living: No-Bean Turkey and Sweet Potato Chili


There doesn’t have to beNo-Bean Turkey and Sweet Potato Chili any debate on whether or not this chili should have beans because you don’t even miss them with all the other delicious and healthy flavors blended in.

This is the time of year when we tend to get worn down, exposed to germs and, horror of horrors during the holiday season, we get sick!

This chili is packed with vitamins and antioxidants to help you ward off colds and other illnesses, and to help you stay healthy during the holidays. As a plus, this chili won’t force a trip to the closet to find the stretchy pants!

Turkey is a lean and flavorful alternative to ground beef in this recipe. Turkey contains less fat than ground beef, and at 54 calories an ounce, it packs eight grams of protein and a lot of potassium.

Sweet potatoes are often called nature’s “perfect” food. At 114 calories per cup, sweet potatoes provide 337 percent of the daily recommended allowance for vitamin A, a good supply of potassium and 15 percent of the USRDA for vitamin B-6.

No-Bean Turkey and Sweet Potato Chili

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Serves: 5

Ingredients:
20 oz lean ground turkey
kosher salt, to taste
1/2 cup onions, chopped
3 garlic cloves, crushed
1 (10 oz) can Rotel Mild Tomatoes with Green Chilies
1 (8 oz) can tomato sauce
3/4 cup water
1/2 tsp cumin
1/4 tsp chili powder
1/4 tsp paprika
1 bay leaf
1 medium sweet potato, peeled and diced into 1/2-inch cubes
fresh cilantro, for garnish

Directions:
In a large skillet, brown turkey over medium-high heat, breaking it up as it cooks into smaller pieces; season with salt and cumin.

When meat is browned and cooked through, add onion and garlic; cook 3 minutes over medium heat. Add Rotel, sweet potatoes, tomato sauce, water, cumin, chili powder, paprika, salt and bay leaf. Cover and simmer over medium-low heat for 25 minutes, or until potatoes are soft and cooked through. Add 1/4 cup water, if needed. Remove bay leaf and serve.

Calories Per Serving: 215, Fat: 8 g (3 g Saturated Fat), Cholesterol: 81 mg, Sodium: 557 mg, Carbohydrates: 12 g, Fiber: 2 g, Protein: 24 g.

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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.

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Tips on maintaining a healthy lifestyle, every Tuesday.

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

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