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Shop the Sale: Crispy Drumsticks


Crispy DrumsticksLet’s talk about drums.

First: the instrument.

My older son is in seventh grade and could take band for the first time. He’d been talking about playing the trumpet for YEARS, just like his dad, but when it came down to the week where the kids were trying out all the instruments, he wanted to take a proverbial whack at percussion.

Ouch.

I imagined pounding headaches and a constant vibration in the house.

Sure enough, he tried percussion.

He hated it.

“It’s LOUD, Mom,” he said.

Yes. Yes, it is.

He tried the trumpet, the tuba and the trombone, too.

He wants trumpet. We’re hoping he gets trumpet as that’s what his dad plays, and that’s what we have on hand. We shall see next week!

In the meantime, let’s talk about drums.

Drumsticks, that is.

Drumsticks are a part of the chicken that is juicy and flavorful. They are not loud, and they do not cause headaches. You don’t have to beat them to extract flavor.

Try this recipe while drumsticks and thighs are on sale this week at Brookshire’s. The meat is juicy and tender, and the coating is crispy and savory.

Crispy Drumsticks

Ingredients:
3 cups cornflake cereal, crushed
1/3 cup parmesan cheese, grated
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 to 1/2 tsp ground red pepper
1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
3/4 cup fat-free buttermilk
8 chicken drumsticks (about 2 lb), skinned
vegetable cooking spray

Directions:
Combine first 5 ingredients in a large zip-top plastic freezer bag; seal and shake well to combine.

Pour buttermilk into a shallow bowl. Dip 2 drumsticks in buttermilk, and place in bag. Seal and shake well, coating drumsticks completely.

Place drumsticks on an aluminum foil-lined baking sheet coated with cooking spray. Repeat procedure with remaining drumsticks.

Sprinkle remaining cornflake mixture evenly over drumsticks on baking sheet. Lightly coat with cooking spray.

Bake at 425° F for 25 to 30 minutes, or until drumsticks are well-browned and done. Serve immediately.

Nutritional Information: Calories: 324, Fat: 8 g (3 g Saturated Fat, 2 g Monounsaturated Fat, 2 g Polyunsaturated Fat), Protein: 41 g, Carbohydrates: 21 g, Fiber: 1 g, Cholesterol: 137 mg, Iron: 56 mg, Sodium: 790 mg, Calcium: 150 mg.

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



Product Talk: Butterball Everyday Turkey Bacon


Butterball Turkey BaconWe can put away the bacon in my house.

Seriously, between two growing boys (and me!) we love some bacon.

Generally, I choose a center-cut variety of regular bacon, but we’ve also gotten hooked on Butterball Everyday Turkey Bacon.

One slice contains 25 calories and 2 grams of fat. While it provides 2 grams of protein as well, there are also only 80 mg of sodium, which is lower than regular bacon on all counts. That’s about 65 percent less fat and 40 percent less sodium than pork bacon.

The other thing I love about turkey bacon is that it’s easier for me to cook – and clean up! Whereas pork bacon splatters, turkey bacon is cooked through, crispy and without a mess on a paper towel in the microwave. My stove doesn’t get dirty, and it’s quick and easy. The paper towel absorbs some of what little fat is in turkey bacon.

Our favorite way to eat turkey bacon is on a BLT with avocado! I’ve been packing this for school lunches, but I pack all the ingredients separately. (I use baby spinach in place of lettuce.) I let them assemble the sandwich when it’s time to eat. That way nothing gets soggy.



Dine In: Goulash


GoulashI decided today that it is fall.

I can’t wear boots yet. The calendar hasn’t said it’s officially autumn yet, but it feels like fall. Football is on, soccer season has started, school is in full-swing and one of my friends in Colorado posted a picture of it snowing today. I’d say it’s close enough.

I want to make a big pot of something yummy and soothing this weekend, true comfort food. I adore soups and stews, and I leave them simmering on the stove for hours. They smell delicious, and they certainly let me suspend the belief that it’s fall inside, if not outside.

I couldn’t decide what to make, so of course, I polled my Facebook friends. My friend, Dianna, suggested this:

Goulash

Ingredients:
1 lb lean ground beef
1 small onion, diced
1 or 2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 red or green bell pepper, diced (optional)
1 (15 oz) can small dice tomatoes
1 (15 oz) can tomato sauce
2 cups dry macaroni, cooked according to package directions
salt and pepper, to taste
cheese for topping, if desired

Directions:
Bring a large pot of water to a boil and cook the macaroni. While pasta cooks, brown the ground beef that has been seasoned with salt and pepper. Drain beef well and remove meat to a bowl. In 1 tablespoon oil, cook the onion and bell pepper (if using), until softened. Add the canned tomatoes and tomato sauce. Add the ground beef back to skillet. Cover and cook about 15 minutes. Remove lid and add cooked macaroni. Season with salt and pepper, if needed. Toss well and add cheese, if desired.

Nutritional Information: Calories Per Serving: 437, Calories from Fat: 71, Fat: 8 g, Trans Fat: 0 g (3 g Saturated Fat), Cholesterol: 101 mg, Sodium: 862 mg, Potassium: 985 mg, Carbohydrates: 47 g, Fiber: 6 g, Sugar: 11 g, Protein: 43 g.

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Shop the Sale: Parmesan Honey Pork Roast


Parmesan Honey RoastI love parmesan.

I love honey.

They were NOT two flavors that immediately came to mind when thinking about a coating for a pork loin roast.

However, after I thought about it, the combination of the nutty cheese and the earthy honey is quintessentially Mediterranean. It’s also not nearly as sweet as you might think. The honey caramelizes beautifully, and the spices lend a deep, savory flavor.

You can do this dish in a slow cooker, which is another one of my loves.

Pork loin roast is on sale this week at Brookshire’s, so try this for an easy weeknight meal.

Parmesan Honey Pork Roast

Ingredients:
1 (3-4 lb) boneless pork loin roast
2/3 cup parmesan cheese, grated
1/2 cup honey
3 Tbs soy sauce
1 Tbs dried basil
1 Tbs dried oregano
2 Tbs garlic, chopped
2 Tbs olive oil
1/2 tsp salt
2 Tbs cornstarch
1/4 cup chicken broth
1 tsp sugar, optional

Directions:
Place roast in slow cooker.

In a bowl, combine cheese, honey, soy sauce, basil, oregano, garlic, oil and salt.

Pour mixture over the top of roast.

Cover and cook on low for 5-6 hours or until thermometer reads 160° F.

Remove meat and place on platter.

Strain juices in slow cooker and put into a small saucepan.

Mix cornstarch and chicken broth together.

Add into strained juices and stir over medium heat until thickened.

Add in a teaspoon of sugar if sauce needs to be a bit sweeter, optional.

Slice roast and serve with glaze.

Serves 6-8

Nutritional Information: Calories Per Serving: 452, Calories from Fat: 109, Fat: 12 g, Trans Fat: 1 g (3 g Saturated Fat), Cholesterol: 166 mg, Sodium: 712 mg, Potassium: 1011 mg, Carbohydrates: 24 g, Sugar: 20 g, Protein: 60 g.

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



Dine In: Breakfast Egg Rolls


Breakfast Egg RollsWhy are breakfast egg rolls making an appearance on a Friday blog, you may wonder? Because I made them over the weekend and froze a bunch for a quick and easy school-morning breakfast, that’s why!

The egg rolls can be baked or fried. I baked mine at 425° F until the wrappers were golden-brown. I let them cool completely before freezing them.

The sausage gravy was the proverbial icing on the cake for my older son. My younger son wanted to dip them in queso. That worked, too. Next time, I think I’ll add some diced onion and green bell pepper and sauté it with the sausage. Maybe a jalapeño and a little bit of hot sauce for a spicier version, too. I’ll also try it with sausage INSIDE the egg roll.

Obviously, you can easily adjust the amount on this recipe by making more filling and using more wrappers.

To reheat, microwave for about a minute on high.

Breakfast Egg Rolls

Ingredients:
3/4 lb reduced fat ground sausage
4 Tbs flour
4 cups milk
3 cups shredded hash browns
3-4 eggs
2 Tbs water
1 cup sharp cheddar cheese
salt and pepper
oil for frying

Directions:
Brown sausage in a skillet. Remove 1/2 cup to a mixing bowl. Add flour to the skillet and brown a little in the sausage fat. Slowly add milk and stir several times while it thickens. Add salt and pepper to taste. Keep warm while making egg rolls.

Mix eggs with the water and scramble the eggs. Cook eggs in a small frying pan just until set. Add to sausage. (Don’t cook all the way through; they will finish cooking when you make the egg rolls.)

Add the potatoes and cheese to the bowl with the sausage. Add 1/2 cup of the sausage gravy mixture. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Stir to blend together.

To make egg rolls, take an egg roll wrapper and put about 1/3 cup of the potato sausage mixture just below the center. Fold over one half to make a triangle. You should have about a 1/2 inch of the bottom part of the wrapper still exposed. With your finger, brush a little water along that edge to help seal the egg rolls. Fold in 2 sides forming the egg roll shape. Then, roll up egg roll.

To fry the egg rolls, heat oil to 325º F. Drop egg rolls into hot oil. Fry for 3-4 minutes or until golden-brown. Drain on a paper towel.
Serve with a bowl of sausage gravy.

Nutritional Information: Calories Per Serving: 567, Calories from Fat: 292, Fat: 32 g, Trans Fat: 0 g (12 g Saturated Fat), Cholesterol: 178 mg, Sodium: 836 mg, Potassium: 606 mg, Carbohydrates: 41 g, Fiber: 3 g, Sugar: 9 g, Protein: 27 g.

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

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Product Talk: Self-Rising Cornmeal


Self Rising Corn MealI’d heard of self-rising flour before, but I’d never heard of self-rising cornmeal until I saw it in Brookshire’s the other day. I was shopping for regular cornmeal when I noticed the self-rising variety. It fit my recipe, so I decided to give it a try.

Self-rising corn meal has a leavening agent, usually baking soda and salt, and is often enriched with B vitamins. It does not contain flour. It’s perfect for cornbread or casseroles that contain cornbread mix, basically saving you a step.  

You can’t use it in place of regular cornmeal in recipes without reducing the leavening and salt in whatever recipe you’re using, but you can use this where recipes call for cornmeal, salt and some leavening agent. You just might have to experiment a little with the proportions. 

Self-rising cornmeal has the same sweet tasty and gritty texture as regular cornmeal. Make it a staple in your pantry today.



Dine In: Spinach and Artichoke Dip Pasta


PastaWhen we had our children 17 months apart, we didn’t go out much. Go figure.

Every Friday night, the boys’ dad would bring home take-out. I’d get a break from cooking, and he’d get a break from helping me clean up. That was pretty much heaven to the parents of two babies, both of whom had jobs other than the sweet children.

When the kids got a bit older, we’d venture out every now and then, every once in a GREAT while, mind you. Taking two kids under three years old out to dinner isn’t always fun. Plus, they often can’t eat what’s on the menu, so you either have to pack them food or find something to order they’ll like.

One Friday night, we were at a fairly well-known national restaurant, and we ordered spinach and artichoke dip for an appetizer. Our older son, not known for his proclivity for green veggies, kept reaching for it. We finally gave him a taste and he ended up eating most of the rest of it, with a spoon.

I found this recipe for a pasta that mimicked the dish he loved that night, and it’s been a family favorite ever since. 

Spinach and Artichoke Dip Pasta

Ingredients:
8 oz penne pasta
2 Tbsp butter
1 onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, chopped
3 Tbsp flour
2 cups milk
4 oz cream cheese, room temperature
1/4 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano (parmesan), grated
1/2 cup mozzarella, shredded
1 (14 oz) can artichoke hearts, coarsely chopped
8 oz spinach, coarsely chopped
salt and pepper, to taste

Directions:
Start cooking pasta as directed on the package. Melt the butter in a pan over medium heat. Add the onion and cook until tender, about 5-7 minutes. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about a minute. Sprinkle in the flour and cook for a few minutes while stirring. Add the milk and cook while stirring until it thickens up, about 1-2 minutes. Add the cheese and cook while stirring until they melt, about 1-2 minutes.  Add the artichokes and spinach, and cook while stirring until the spinach wilts, about 1-2 minutes.

Season with salt and pepper to taste; remove from heat.

Nutritional Information: Calories Per Serving: 497, Fat: 20 g, Trans Fat: 0 g (11 g Saturated Fat, Cholesterol: 97 mg, Sodium: 488 mg, Carbohydrates: 59 g, Fiber: 7.4 g, Sugar: 10 g, Protein: 24 g.

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

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Shop the Sale: Hot Chicken Salad Casserole


Hot Chicken Salad CasseroleYou know you’re in the South when the words “chicken salad” and “casserole” appear in the title of the same recipe.

Goodness knows we love our chicken salad and our casseroles, and both are great on a chilly winter night.

There’s a restaurant in my hometown that I’ll go to when meeting girlfriends for lunch. They always have the best selection of warm salads, cold salads and hot soups (oh yes, and pimento cheese, but that’s probably another post). I can totally envision this hot chicken salad casserole fitting right in on their salad bar!

Chicken breasts are on sale this week, so try this one night soon.

Hot Chicken Salad Casserole

Ingredients:
1 cup mayonnaise
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1/2 tsp lemon pepper seasoning
pinch of dried thyme and rosemary, crushed
4 cups diced cooked chicken
4 eggs, boiled and chopped
1/2 cup minced celery
1/3 cup finely minced onion
1 green onion, sliced
1/2 cup sliced almonds
topping (below)

Directions:
Preheat oven to 350°F. Butter a 13 x 9 baking dish. In a bowl, combine the mayonnaise and soup; blend well. Stir in the cheddar cheese, lemon pepper, thyme and rosemary. Add the chicken, eggs, celery, onion, green onion and almonds; mix. Taste and adjust seasonings, adding salt only as needed, then transfer to prepared baking dish. Add the topping. Bake 20 minutes until hot and bubbly.

Topping: Vary the casserole toppings by using additional shredded cheese on top, alone or with one of these toppings: 1 cup of Panko bread crumbs, dry bread crumbs, a sleeve of crushed saltines or Ritz crackers mixed with 1 to 4 tablespoons of unsalted butter, melted or simply slice cold butter thinly and scatter over the top; or add 1-1/2 cups of crushed plain or kettle style potato chips to the top.

Serves 8

Nutritional Information: Calories Per Serving: 389, Calories from Fat: 220, Fat: 24 g, Trans Fat: 0 g (7 g Saturated Fat), Cholesterol: 162 mg, Sodium: 686 mg, Carbohydrates: 13 g, Fiber: 1 g, Sugar: 3 g, Protein: 29 g



Product Talk: Philadelphia Cooking Crème


If you know me at all, you know I firmly believe cream cheese is a food group. I have a Pinterest board dedicated to all things cream cheese. I have a Philadelphia brand cream cheese cookbook at home, and I plan to someday write the definitive cream cheese cookbook.

So, imagine my delight when the Philadelphia brand (makers of all things cream cheese) came out with Cooking Crème. A more “pourable” version of cream cheese, Cooking Crème is perfect for sauces and soups. It comes in several flavors, leaving very little work for you to do when creating a delicious meal at home. Choose from Italian Herb, Savory Garlic, Creamy Pesto, Savory Lemon and Herb, or Santa Fe Blend.

Also, imagine my delight when I met a man who feels the same way about cream cheese that I do, earning him scads of points in my book. He also gets bonus points for being an adventurous eater and being more than willing to eat anything I whip up. This recipe was born on a night of “let’s see what’s in the fridge and pantry” and will become a regular meal in the rotation!

Italian Herb Cream Pasta

Ingredients:
12 oz linguine
1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 yellow squash, diced
1 red bell pepper, diced
1/2 white onion, diced
3 cups fresh spinach
1 can (15 oz) diced tomatoes, undrained
1 tub (10 oz) Philadelphia Cooking Crème in Italian Herb

Directions:
Boil water in a large pot. Add pasta; cook until al dente.
While pasta is cooking, heat olive oil over medium-high heat. Sauté onion until translucent. Add garlic, squash and bell pepper. Sauté until the vegetables begin to soften. Add can of tomatoes and reduce liquid by half. Add spinach and cook until wilted. Add Cooking Crème and heat through. Drain pasta. Toss with sauce and serve immediately.

Nutritional Information: Calories Per Serving: 446, Calories from Fat: 143, Fat: 16 g, Trans Fat: 0 g (7 g Saturated Fat), Cholesterol: 95 mg, Sodium: 583 mg, Carbohydrates: 62 g, Fiber: 3 g, Sugar: 9 g, Protein: 17 g



Dine In: Thai Noodles with Peanut Sauce


I recently polled my friends on Facebook to see what constituted their favorite dine-in meals, and I promised them I’d include their recipes and ideas if they answered my query.

So here’s my first recipe, from my friend Melinda, who said she and her husband have Date Night on Friday nights at home.

“We like to listen to jazz, and I like to recreate a meal we had on our first date,” Melinda wrote. “We went to a Thai restaurant, which I had picked because it sounded exotic. I didn’t know the first thing about Thai food but I wanted to impress (my now-husband), so I suggested Thai. He went right along with it, sounding all worldly, but when it came time to order we both had to admit we knew nothing about Thai food. Good thing our waiter was used to morons and guided us through it. Now, we make it at home as a favorite dish and a bonding experience.”

Thai Noodles with Peanut Sauce

Ingredients

12 oz linguine
4 Tbs sesame oil
1/2 cup green onion, chopped
1 cup finely shredded carrot
2 cups frozen stir-fry vegetables
3 Tbs minced fresh garlic
1/2 Tbs ground ginger or 1 Tbs fresh ginger, minced
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup creamy peanut butter
1/4 cup soy sauce
3 Tbs rice vinegar
1/2 Tbs chili-garlic sauce

Directions:

Cook pasta in a large pot of salted water according to package directions. Drain and return to pot. Add 2 tablespoons sesame oil and toss to coat. Set aside.

Heat the remaining 2 tablespoons sesame oil in heavy pot over medium-high heat. Add green onions, carrots, stir-fry vegetables, garlic and ginger. Sauté until vegetables soften, about 4 minutes.

Add honey, peanut butter, soy sauce, vinegar and chili-garlic sauce and mix well. Simmer sauce 2 minutes.

Pour sauce over pasta and toss well. Transfer to platter and serve warm. Garnish with additional green onions, if desired.

Serves: 8

Nutritional Information:Calories Per Serving: 318, Calories from Fat 104, Fat: 12 g, Cholesterol: 0 mg, Sugars: 12 g, Sodium: 555 mg, Carbohydrates: 46 g, Fiber: 3 g, Sugars: 12 g, Protein: 9 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.

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