share. The Brookshire's Blog

Product Talk: Brookshire’s Flowers

Brookshire's FlowersJust because it’s four days after Valentine’s Day doesn’t mean that you should think “too late” on this post. Yes, flowers for your sweetheart on Feb. 14 are nice, but flowers on a RANDOM day the rest of the year are even better; at least to me.

Brookshire’s floral department never ceases to amaze me. I stopped in on the last day of school last year for gigantic bouquets of brilliant sunflowers for my boys’ teachers. I had a horrible migraine last week and I was the lucky recipient of a mixed bouquet of magenta blooms that are still fresh and vibrant over a week later. I’ve purchased green plants for offices and cheery arrangements of daisies, tulips, lilies and roses. I even gave someone a pepper plant as a gift once from the Brookshire’s floral department.

So just remember, it doesn’t have to be Valentine’s Day to give the gift of flowers. Just saying!

Product Talk: Going Gluten Free

Gluten-Free Ginger Rice CrunchA lot of people these days are finding they are intolerant to gluten. Others are just avoiding it because they feel better without it.

Gluten is a protein composite found in foods processed from wheat and related grain species, including barley and rye. Gluten gives elasticity to dough, helping it rise and keep its shape and often gives the final product a chewy texture.

People with Celiac’s disease cannot process gluten and it causes all kinds of distress for their systems.

Luckily, the number of gluten-free products available at Brookshire’s these days is phenomenal.

This is a quick and easy snack recipe to make with a gluten-free product you can find on any grocery store shelf.

Gluten-Free Ginger Rice Crunch
Serves: 24

1/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup butter or margarine
1/4 cup honey
1 1/2 tsp ground ginger or cardamom
6 cups Rice Chex cereal (gluten-free)
1 cup dried banana chips
1 cup unblanched whole almonds
1 cup flaked coconut
1/2 cup sweetened dried cranberries or dried pineapple

Heat oven to 250° F. Spray large roasting pan with cooking spray. In 1-quart saucepan, heat brown sugar, butter, honey and ginger to boiling. Remove from heat; cool slightly.

Into roasting pan, mix cereal, banana chips, almonds and coconut. Stir in brown sugar mixture until evenly coated.

Bake 50 minutes, stirring every 15 minutes. Spread on waxed paper or foil; cool about 15 minutes. Place in serving bowl; stir in cranberries. Store in airtight container.

Nutritional Information: Calories: 140, Calories from Fat: 70, Total Fat: 7 g, Cholesterol: 5 mg, Sodium: 85 mg, Total Carbohydrate: 18 g; Dietary Fiber: 1 g, Sugars: 10 g, Protein: 2g

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

Product Talk: Eggnog

My favorite night of the entire year is Christmas Eve.

To me, it’s better than Christmas morning – the anticipation of the birth of Christ and the festivities of the next day practically charge the air with electricity. I love leaving evening church services and coming home to a big meal – it’s traditionally lasagna in my house – and wrangling the kids to sleep at a reasonable hour.

Then, of course, it’s time to wait for Jolly Old St. Nick to bound down the chimney.

While you’re waiting, you can indulge in a treat we really only see once a year — eggnog.

Eggnog is a sweetened dairy-based beverage traditionally made with milk and/or cream, sugar, and whipped eggs (which gives it a frothy texture). Brandy, rum, whisky, bourbon, Kahlúa, vodka, or a combination of liquors are often added. The finished serving is often garnished with a sprinkling of ground cinnamon or nutmeg.

Here’s one eggnog recipe my family has enjoyed at Christmas Eve gatherings. Purchase pre-made eggnog from the dairy case at Brookshire’s to get you started.

Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night.

Golden Blizzard Eggnog
Serves 2

1 1/2 cups eggnog
2 shots Goldschlager cinnamon schnapps
2 shots Arrow peppermint schnapps

Add the shots of Goldschlager and Arrow to a mason jar, then fill with eggnog. Shake and pour into 2 cups.

Nutritional Information: Calories Per Serving: 505,Calories from Fat: 128, Cholesterol: 112 mg, Sodium: 103 mg, Total Carbohydrates: 42 g, Sugars: 33 g, Protein: 7 g

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

Product Talk: Candy Cane Christmas

Peppermint RoundsCandy canes and Christmas go hand in hand. The red and white striped delights are everywhere during the holiday season — in chocolate bark, marshmallows, milkshakes, coffee and most anywhere else you can imagine a sprinkling of crushed Christmas candy canes!

One of my favorite Christmas cookies has a peppermint flavor, both in the cookie and the delicious icing. I first had this cookie decades ago at a neighborhood Christmas cookie exchange, and it was like no other cookie I had eaten before. I was delighted to get the recipe and to be able to share it with you!

The addition of oats might sound a bit heavy with peppermint, but it gives the cookie a bit of depth and texture you don’t find in a regular sugar cookie. And the “drizzle” icing is foolproof for people who, like me, always have trouble making decorated Christmas cookies look like you see in all the food magazines. A drizzle works every time!

Enjoy and Merry Christmas!

Peppermint Rounds
Makes 36


1 cup unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1 large egg
1 tsp vanilla
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup regular oats
1/3 cup hard peppermint candy, crushed

4 cups sifted powdered sugar
Dash of salt
1/4-1/2 cup half-and-half
1 tsp peppermint extract
Red food coloring

Beat butter at medium speed until creamy; gradually add sugar, beating well. Add egg and vanilla, beating well. Combine flour and salt; add to butter mixture. Stir in oats and candy. Cover and chill 1 hour. Divide dough in half. Roll each portion to 1/8-inch thick on surface dusted with powdered sugar. Cut with 2-inch cookie cutter; place on greased, foil-lined baking sheet. Bake at 350° F for 8 minutes; remove to wire racks to cool.

For the icing combine powdered sugar and salt. Add half-and-half to desired consistency. Add extract. Remove 1/4 cup icing and stir in 1 to 2 drops of food coloring for pink color.

Spread cookies with white icing. Before icing sets, drizzle lines of pink icing across the top of each cookie.

Nutritional Information: Calories Per Serving: 165, Total Fat: 6 g, Sodium: 81 mg, Carbohydrates: 27 g, Protein: 2 g

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

Product Talk: Brookshire’s Bacon

Jalapeño Popper Chicken I’ve tried a lot of bacon in my day (Who hasn’t? Just admit it!) and hands down, Brookshire’s brand original sliced,  hickory smoked is my favorite.

It crisps nicely when cooked, either in the microwave or on the stovetop, it’s not too salty, it’s full of hickory flavor and it doesn’t tend to burn.

I could probably write 97,351 blog posts using bacon, but this is one I made last week and my family has already asked for it again.

It combines the flavor of a jalapeño popper with chicken and, of course, bacon. The traditional jalapeño “popper” is a deep-fried, breaded jalapeño stuffed with cream cheese. This take on it makes a mouthwatering meal that would be great for a family dinner or  a special occasion.

Jalapeño Popper Chicken
Serves 4

4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, pounded to about 1/3-inch
4 oz cream cheese
4 oz cheddar cheese
2 jalapeño peppers, diced
1 Tbs hot sauce
12 strips Brookshire’s Original Sliced, Hickory Smoked Bacon

Pound chicken breasts until they are about 1/3-inch thick.  Soften cream cheese. Add cheddar, jalapeño and hot sauce. Mix well.

Place about 2 tablespoons of cream cheese mixture on one end of chicken. Roll chicken around filling. Wrap chicken with three slices of bacon, secure with a toothpick.

Bake at 400° F for 25 to 30 minutes (I had to finish mine under the broiler to “crisp” the bacon).

Nutritional Information: Calories Per Serving: 614, Calories from Fat: 366 g, Total Fat: 41 g,Saturated Fat: 20 g, Cholesterol: 213 mg, Sodium: 1069 mg, Total Carbohydrates: 2 g, Sugars: 1 g, Protein: 58 g

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

Ask Leigh

Question:  My mother used to make a delicious pot roast with Coca-Cola. She also made a wonderful chocolate cake with it. Can you use any soft drink or does it have to be a regular Coca-Cola?

Answer:  My favorite cake in the world might be a chocolate sheet cake made with Coca-Cola…I am betting that’s the same chocolate cake you mention here! I’ve never had a roast using a carbonated soda in the marinade, but you made me very curious! I found several delicious-sounding roast recipes – and yes, they all called for a regular cola.

I played around in the kitchen to see what would happen if I used a diet soda. It didn’t work. But I remembered that a couple of summers ago I marinated some flank steak in Dr. Pepper (didn’t have anything else!) before grilling, and everyone loved it. I thought I’d share my recipe with you – and these would work great with regular Coca-Cola too. Enjoy! 

Dr. Pepper-Marinated Flank Steak Nachos
Serves 8

1 lb flank steak
24 oz Dr. Pepper
2 tsp kosher salt
4 Tbs brown sugar
1 tsp black pepper
1 (9-oz) bag of your favorite, sturdy large-sized corn chip
2 cups refried beans
2 tsp ground cumin
2 1/2 cups Mexican-blend shredded cheese

Optional toppings: Sour Cream, sliced pickled jalapenos, favorite salsa

Combine flank steak and Dr. Pepper in a non-reactive container and refrigerate at least 6 hours in refrigerator.

When it’s time to make the nachos, heat your gas or charcoal grill to high heat. Combine salt, brown sugar and pepper in small bowl. Remove steak from Dr. Pepper and rub spices into meat. Grill steak 3-4 minutes on each side until medium-rare. Do not overcook. Let steak rest 5 minutes before slicing.

To make the nachos, preheat oven to 350. Place corn chips on cookie sheet, in one layer. Combine black beans with cumin. Spread small amount of black beans over each chip. Sprinkle cheese over chips. Slice flank steak against the grain into ½-inch wide strips. Cut again into bite-sized pieces. Distribute meat over nachos.

Bake 5 minutes until cheese is bubbly. Remove and serve with toppings.

Nutritional Information: Calories Per Serving: 528, Total Fat: 26.4 g, Sodium 1223 mg, Carbohydrates 43.3 g, Protein: 30.1 g

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Posted in: Entertaining

Product Talk: Miniature Candy Bars

You can’t walk past an end cap in your local Brookshire’s right now without pumping into a boo-tiful display of Halloween candy. Sweet Tarts, lollipops, gummy bears. You name it; you can buy it in bulk right now.

Personally, I go straight for the chocolate and I love the miniature-sized candy bars are the best. Luckily for me, I have one son who loves chocolate, and one who doesn’t, so I have carte blanche to raid his Halloween pumpkin and pillage all the bite-sized Butterfingers and Snickers.

This recipe is a fun way to use leftover Halloween candy. It’s also great for a holiday party or just a wonderful way to use those bulk bags of mini candy bars.

Snickers Puffs (or Milky Way Puffs)

1 (8 oz) can Pillsbury crescent dinner rolls
2 Tbs butter or margarine, melted
4 (snack size) Milky Way or Snickers candy bars

1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar
2 tsp cocoa
2 or 3 tsp milk
Colored sprinkles

Preheat oven to 375°F.

Separate dough into 8 triangles. Cut each candy bar in half crosswise. Place one candy piece on shortest side of each triangle. Roll up. Start at shortest side and roll to opposite side. Pinch edges of dough to seal. Dip one side in melted butter. Place rolls point side down in ungreased muffin cups. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from pan. Cool slightly.

In small bowl, combine all glaze ingredients until smooth. Drizzle over warm rolls. Garnish with sprinkles.

Nutritional Information: Calories 208; Calories from Fat 78; Total Fat 9 g; Saturated Fat 5 g; Cholesterol 11mg; Sodium 212 mg; Total Carbohydrates 30 g; Dietary Fiber 1 g; Sugars 14 g; Protein 4 g

Family Matters: Pumpkin Butterscotch Fudge Bars

Fall has always been my favorite time of year. It has nothing to do with the fact that I was born in October. (No, really, it doesn’t, I promise) And fall is rapidly becoming my boys’ favorite time of year, too.

First of all, there’s the weather. When it got chilly last weekend, the first thing my older son asked for when he woke up was hot cocoa. Who doesn’t love a steaming mug of chocolaty goodness on a crisp fall morning?  With the cooler weather comes camping, one of our favorite family activities. There is nothing better than spending the day hiking, crunching along in the colorful leaves, then cooking over an open flame, making melty, delicious s ‘mores and going to sleep under the stars – after the ghost stories, of course.

Fall is also soccer season. My younger son plays and is pretty darn good, if I do say so myself. Saturdays at the soccer field, cheering him on, are a fun way to spend a family day too.

Fall means corn mazes, pumpkin patches, haunted houses and hayrides. Last weekend we visited four haunted houses at a local amusement park and crept through them, alternately laughing hysterically and clutching each other in anticipation of what was going to pop out from behind the next corner. We go to a nearby corn maze every year, too, and luckily for me my boys have a better sense of direction than I do, because they can sniff our way out much more quickly than I can. We pick up our pumpkins at the same place, searching the extensive field for just the right gourd to take home for our jack o’ lantern.

Fall also means baking. Lots of baking. Pumpkin bread, cinnamon rolls, spice loaf, peanut butter cookies and these pumpkin butterscotch fudge bars that combine all the delicious flavors of my favorite season.

Pumpkin Butterscotch Fudge Bars
Makes 4 dozen


Cookie Base:
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup Quaker® Oats (quick or old fashioned, uncooked)
3/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1/2 cup flaked coconut
3/4 tsp pumpkin pie spice
1/2 tsp baking soda
12 Tbs (1-1/2 sticks) butter or margarine, melted

2 Tbs stick butter or margarine
2/3 cup evaporated milk
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup 100% Pure Pumpkin
1-1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
1/4 tsp salt
2 cups (4 oz.) miniature marshmallows
1-2/3 cups (11-oz. pkg.) butterscotch chips
3/4 cup chopped walnuts, divided
1 tsp vanilla

Heat oven to 350°F. Line 15 x 10-inch jelly-roll pan with foil.

For cookie base, combine flour, oats, brown sugar, nuts, coconut, pumpkin pie spice and baking soda in medium bowl; mix well. Stir in butter; mix well. Press into jelly-roll pan.

Bake 13 to 15 minutes or until lightly brown. Cool in pan on wire rack.

For fudge, combine butter, evaporated milk, sugar, pumpkin, pumpkin pie spice and salt in medium, heavy saucepan. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly, over medium heat. Boil, stirring constantly, 8 to 10 minutes. Remove from heat. Stir in marshmallows, chips, 1/2 cup nuts and vanilla extract. Stir vigorously for 1 minute or until marshmallows are melted. Pour over cookie base; sprinkle with remaining nuts. Refrigerate until firm. Cut into bars.

Nutritional Information: (per bar):Calories 128;  Calories from Fat 56; Total Fat 6 g; Cholesterol 9 mg; Sodium 84 mg; Total Carbohydrates 17 g; Dietary Fiber 1 g; Sugars 12 g; Protein 2 g

Recipe Courtesy of Quaker Oats


Dine-In: Buffalo Chicken Dip

Buffalo Chicken DipMy mom used to serve what she called a ‘munch lunch’ on weekends. I think basically this meant that she was trying to clear out any leftovers she had in the fridge from the week, and we could take it and do with it what we wanted for lunch. Sometimes it was “real” food like leftover meatloaf we could make into a sandwich, but sometimes it was cheese, crackers, some leftover tuna salad or other bits and pieces of former meals we could “munch” on for lunch.

Sometimes my boys and I purvey this idea into a fun Friday night dinner. Somehow it just feels festive to snack in front of a good movie on a Friday night.

This Buffalo Chicken dip is a family favorite. You can serve it on crackers, pitas or with celery or carrot sticks. We’ve also been known to dip chicken wings in this Buffalo Dip!

Buffalo Chicken Dip
Serves 10 – 12

1 1/2 lbs boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 12-oz bottle Frank’s Hot Wing Sauce
8 oz reduced-fat cream cheese, softened
8 oz lite ranch dressing
1/2 cup chopped celery
4 oz shredded sharp cheddar cheese

Preheat oven to 375° F.  Poach the chicken breasts in boiling water until cooked through. Drain, let cool and then pull meat apart with a fork. In a 9-inch casserole dish, spread out the chicken and pour the wing sauce over. Mix well and spread out, covering the entire bottom of the dish. In a medium sized saucepot, combine the cream cheese and ranch dressing.  Whisk while heating until smooth. You don’t want any cream cheese clumps! Pour the cream cheese mixture over the chicken and spread out. Sprinkle the celery on top. Bake for fifteen minutes.

After fifteen minutes, sprinkle the cheddar cheese on top and continue baking for another ten to fifteen minutes or until the cheese has melted and is bubbling. Remove from oven and let sit for ten minutes. Stir well and serve with chips, celery sticks and buffalo chicken wings.

Nutritional Information: Calories 306; Calories from Fat 184; Total Fat 21g;  Cholesterol 98mg; Sodium 1076mg; Total Carbohydrates 5g; Sugars 3g; Protein 25 g

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

Family Matters: New Year…New You

As we celebrate the New Year, let us all take a few minutes to reflect on the past year and look ahead at what we want to accomplish this year.

Whether you focus on marriage, family, friends, work, or life in general, there are things we can do (without much effort) that would make a difference in all of areas of our lives.

Think about compassion, patience, generosity, respect, kindness, self-control, integrity, gratitude, faithfulness and, most importantly, love.

When is the last time you showed compassion, had patience, expressed generosity, practiced respect, acted out of kindness, used self-control and upheld integrity?  What about showing gratitude, faithfulness and expressing love to others?

Everyone likes to receive these types of things, but we ourselves often fall short of extending them to others on a daily basis.  There are no greater attributes we can teach our children or accomplish as a family than having a passion to make the world around us a better place to live.  We are all extended mercy and grace daily, and we receive blessings we never acknowledge.

My prayer, for you and your family, is that you to find joy, hope and the courage to be different and to make a difference, in the lives of others this year. Count your blessings daily and give thanks for the time you have to share with your family.

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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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