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Shop the Sale: Turkey Stuffed Bell Peppers


I don’t know about you, but I’m ready for the fall. 

Cooler, crisp weather. Football games. Leaves crinkling underfoot. Delicious aromas wafting through the house after a day spent outside hiking. 

This recipe reminds me exactly of that. 

I love using ground turkey in slow cooked dishes. It stays a bit more tender than ground beef and positively melts in your mouth after a day in the slow cooker. The fall-colored peppers are even on sale this week, so you can stock up and freeze extras for another day. 

Turkey Stuffed Bell Peppers (for the slow cooker)
Serves 4 

Ingredients:
4 hothouse grown bell peppers (red, gold or orange) tops removed and seeded
1/2 cup brown rice

20 oz lean ground turkey
1/2 cup black beans
1 cup flash frozen corn kernels
1 garlic clove, minced
1 Tbs cumin
28 oz canned tomatoes, divided and crushed 

Directions:
Remove tops from bell peppers, core and seed.  Cook rice according to package directions. Let cool slightly.  Combine turkey, beans, rice, corn, garlic and cumin. Mix with about 3/4 cup of the tomatoes. Stuff turkey mixture into peppers (you’ll probably have a bit extra). Place peppers in slow cooker. Top with rest of tomatoes. Cook on low for 6 to 7 hours. 

Nutritional Information: Calories: 614; Calories from fat: 189; Total Fat: 21 g; Cholesterol: 145 mg; Sodium: 172 mg; Total Carbohydrates: 57 g; Dietary Fiber: 11 g; Sugars: 12 g; Protein: 50 g. 



Healthy Living: Chicken Souvlaki with Tzatziki


I just returned from my annual beach vacation to Virginia.

Not born, but bred in the capital of the confederacy, I return to my home state every summer with my boys to meet my entire family at Sandbridge Beach, just south of Virginia Beach.

I have four siblings. They have spouses. They have children. It’s a week of carefully (and sometimes not –so-carefully) controlled chaos in our beach house. Chaotic, but completely glorious.

Needless to say, mealtimes can be one of the most trying times of the day. Each sibling – and my parents – take a night to cook dinner for the entire crew.  “What’s for dinner?” is often the most-asked question of the day. The meals are magnificent!

This year, my mom made chicken souvlaki with tzatziki. A Greek dish, souvlaki is simply a skewered and grilled meat. Mom used chicken in order to appeal to the large crowd. Tzatziki makes the dish, in my opinion. Made with Greek yogurt, the light, refreshing tzatziki sauce packs a powerful punch on the grilled chicken and elevates it from a meal to an experience. Sitting on the deck of the beach house, I was instantly transported across the ocean.

Everyone loved this dish. Greek  yogurt has substantially more protein than standard American yogurt. A 6-ounce serving of Greek yogurt, contains a full 15 grams of protein. Additional protein can help you to feel full and satisfied. A 6-ounce serving also provides 20 percent of your daily calcium needs.

Chicken Souvlaki with Tzatziki
Serves 4

Ingredients:
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 lemon, juice and zest
1 cup Greek yogurt
1/4 seedless cucumber, finely diced
1 tsp oregano
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1 lb chicken breast, cut into bite sized pieces

Directions:
Mix all of the ingredients except chicken, place them in a sealed container and let flavors blend for a few hours. Skewer the meat, and grill over medium-high heat until cooked, about 2-4 minutes per side.

Serve with sauce.

Nutritional Information: Calories 198; Calories from Fat 37; Total Fat 4g; Sodium 232mg; Total Carbohydrates 3g; Dietary Fiber 1g; Sugars 1g; Protein 36g



Shop the Sale: Pork and Apple Tagine


I’ve been breaking my former rule of ‘no fruit and meat together’ more and more frequently these days and let me just tell you, it’s quite liberating. Why did I resist the delicious combination of fruits and meats for so long?

I’ve been making up for lost time and this recipe, which combines two items on sale at Brookshire’s this week: Hormel Boneless Pork Tenderloin Roast and Royal Gala Apples.

As soon as I read this recipe, I knew I had to try it. It reminds me of fall and is perfect for back-to-school. Don’t be intimidated by the word “tagine,” either. A tagine is simply an earthenware vessel popular in Africa and used to cook stews such as this one. Don’t worry if you don’t have one. I don’t either. I simply used a large stock pot.

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

Pork and Apple Tagine
Serves 4

Source:  Recipe from Aussie Apples

Ingredients:
400 g Hormel Boneless Pork Tenderloin
1 Tbs plain flour
2 tsp olive oil
2 red onions, cut into 6 wedges
1 bunch baby (or Dutch) carrots, trimmed and scrubbed
3/4 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp ground coriander
1/2 tsp allspice
1 cinnamon stick
3 cloves
1 1/2 cups low salt vegetable stock
2  Granny Smith apples
2 Royal Gala apples

Directions:
Cut the pork fillet into strips. Place flour in a shallow dish. Season with salt and pepper. Dip the pork into the flour, so it’s lightly coated. Shake off any excess flour. Heat olive oil in a flameproof casserole dish, over a medium-high heat. Once heated, add the pork in small batches and cook for 2 – 3 minutes, until browned on all sides. Transfer browned pork to a plate and set aside.

Turn the heat down to medium – low. Add the onions and carrots to the pan and cook gently for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the pork and spices to the pan and cook for a further 30 seconds, until all the ingredients are coated with the spices. Add the stock and bring to the boil. Turn the heat down, place the lid on top and simmer gently for 15 minutes.

Cut the apples into quarters and remove the core (leave the skin on). Add apple to the pork and vegetables. Stir gently and then replace the lid. Continue cooking for another 15 minutes, until the pork is cooked through.

Remove the cloves and cinnamon stick. Serve the apple and pork tagine with a large green salad and couscous.

Nutritional Information: Calories 250; Calories from Fat: 54; Total Fat: 6.0 g; Cholesterol: 54 mg; Sodium: 571 mg; Total Carbohydrates: 33 g; Dietary Fiber: 7 g; Sugars: 21 g; Protein: 21 g



Dine-In: Meatloaf and Meaningful Conversation


Miniature Meat LoavesIf you’ve made plans for your family to stay home tonight and enjoy a little time together away from the rush of the real world, the family dinner table is a great place for meaningful, yet still relaxed, conversation.

But sometimes (with two teenage boys), I need help to get the conversation past “yes” or “no” answers! I don’t want to force anyone into a conversation, but I’ve learned that if I can indirectly get the talking flowing, then everything else seems to ease into place naturally.

Along with a yummy miniature meatloaf recipe for your Dine-In Friday night, here are a few questions and ideas to help your slow time flow even better:

Tell us one thing that happened today that made you feel silly (happy, loved, smart, etc.).

Tell us one thing that really happened to you today, and make up another thing that did not really happen. Let us guess which one is true.

Do you have a hero? Mine is…because…

One thing I want to learn to do that I can’t do now is…

What is the very first thing you can remember about your life?

If you could have picked your own name, what would it be? Why?

God made each of us with our own special gifts and talents. What do you think is one of your gifts or talents? Let each family member also share about the other family members.

People always talk about being “successful.” What do you want in life to feel like you are a success?

Would you rather be a professional athlete, president of your country, or a movie star? Why?

Do you have a best friend? What do you like about him or her?

Miniature Meat Loaves
Serves 6

Ingredients:
1 Tbs olive oil
1 cup chopped yellow onion
1 cup chopped green pepper
1 tsp salt
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
2 tbs Worcestershire sauce
1 tbs tomato paste
1 1/2 lbs ground beef
1/2 cup plain dry bread crumbs
2 large eggs, beaten
1/2 cup ketchup

Directions:
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Heat the olive oil in a medium sauté pan. Add the onions, green pepper, salt and pepper and cook over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally, for 8 to 10 minutes, until the onions are softened. Remove the pan from the heat, and add the Worcestershire sauce and tomato paste. Allow to cool slightly. In a large bowl, combine the ground beef, onion and green pepper mixture, bread crumbs, and eggs, and mix by hand until the ingredients are well distributed. Place foil liners into a 12-cup muffin pan and shape individual portions of meatloaf to fit each muffin cup. Spread about a tablespoon of ketchup on the top of each portion. Bake for 40 to 45 minutes, until the internal temperature is 155-160°. And the meatloaves are cooked through. Serve hot.

Nutritional Information: Calories Per Serving: 293, Total Fat: 11.2 g, Saturated Fat: 3.6 g, Sodium 776 mg, Carbohydrates 9.4 g, Protein: 37.4 g



Shop the Sale: White Beans and Ham


I was cleaning out my freezer recently and I found leftover ham. From Easter. 

I promptly defrosted it, diced up the leftovers and served it baked into macaroni and cheese. 

I also promised myself I wouldn’t cook ham only at Easter any more. It’s so versatile and there are always great ways to repurpose leftovers. 

I was excited this week to see that Double-G Brands Ham Portions are on sale at Brookshire’s. I have just the recipe waiting for the succulent and smoky ham! I also love using my slow cooker during the summer because it doesn’t heat up my entire kitchen.

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

White Beans and Ham for the Slow Cooker
Serves 8 

Ingredients:
1 (10 oz) bag dried Great Northern Beans
1 to 2 lbs Double-G Brands Ham Portions, Bone In
1 white onion, chopped
1 cup chopped carrots
2 stalks celery, chopped
1 tsp garlic salt
1 Tbs pepper
1 Tbs dried thyme
1 Tbs rosemary
1 tsp ground cumin
water 

Directions:
Wash beans carefully and place in slow cooker.

Remove ham from bone and dice. Place in slow cooker with beans.

Add ham bone, carrots, celery, onion and spices to the slow cooker and cover with water about an inch higher than ingredients. 

Cook on high heat 6 to 8 hour or low 8 to 10 hours.

Note: Monitor the water level when cooking as beans will absorb much of the liquid. 

Nutritional Information: Calories 195; Calories from Fat 24; Total Fat 3g; Cholesterol 27mg; Sodium 708mg; Total Carbohydrates 26g; Dietary Fiber 8g; Sugars 2g; Protein 18g



Product Talk: Turkey Roll Ups


Turkey lunchmeat always reminds me of school lunches. 

My mom would make the best turkey sandwiches for my Holly Hobbie metal lunchbox. I don’t really know if putting lunchmeat on white bread with mustard constitutes making a great sandwich, but I do know it was always one of my favorites. 

Turkey sandwiches remain my favorite to this day. I’ve discovered the quality of the turkey lunchmeat you buy definitely does make for a better sandwich. I love Brookshire’s Hickory Smoked turkey breast. The flavor of the tender lunch meat is enhanced by the hickory smoke. 

I don’t always take a turkey sandwich with me to work (and I don’t carry a Holly Hobbie lunch kit any more either) but I love to use turkey in these delicious roll-ups for dinners. Leftovers ARE great for lunches! 

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

Turkey Roll Ups 

Serves 4

Ingredients:
4 burrito-sized flour tortillas
1 lb Brookshire’s Hickory Smoked turkey breast
8 Tbs Food Club cream cheese, flavored with onions and chive
8 strips bacon, cooked crisp
1 large onion, sliced thin
1 Tbs olive oil

Directions:
Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add onion. Cook over medium heat until onion begins carmelizes, about 20 minutes. Remove from heat. 

Spread each tortilla with 2 tablespoons of cream cheese, top with one-fourth of the turkey breast, two strips of bacon and one-fourth of the carmelized onions. 

Roll up and enjoy! 

Nutritional Information: Calories 614; Calories from Fat 299; Total Fat 33g; Cholesterol 100mg; Sodium 2493mg; Total Carbohydrates ; 39g; Dietary Fiber 2g; Sugars 3g; Protein 35g



Shop the Sale: Chili Rubbed Pork Chops


I’m just going to be honest – my weight has been up and down over the years and I can’t blame it all on giving birth twice.

You see, I love food and I love cooking. What I forget sometimes is that food doesn’t have to be high in fat or calories to taste delicious.

When I saw the boneless pork chops on sale this week I was reminded of one of my favorite recipes from my ‘Healthy Foods’ files.

There’s so much flavor you won’t even miss the fat or extra calories.

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

Chili Rubbed Pork Chops with Lemon Green Beans

Ingredients:
1 1/2 Tbs chili powder
1 Tbs brown sugar
2 tsp cumin
1 tsp garlic powder
2 Tbs Worcestershire sauce
4 Hormel boneless pork chops
1 lb fresh green beans, trimmed
Juice of one lemon

Directions:
Preheat broiler or grill and coat pan or grill grate with non-stick cooking spray.

Combine chili powder, brown sugar, cumin and garlic powder. Add Worcestershire sauce and stir until a paste forms.

Rub paste onto both sides of pork chops. Place on prepared pan/grill and broil or grill until pork is no longer pink – about four minutes each side.

Steam string beans. Drain. Drizzle with fresh lemon juice.

Nutritional Information: Calories 271; Fat 8.5 g; Carbohydrate 15.1g; Fiber 5.3g; Cholesterol 78g; Protein 33.7g



Dine-In: Sausage-Stuffed, Bacon-Wrapped Pork Tenderloin


Fridays are the gateway to the weekend and, to me, the perfect time to celebrate a few days off with a festive meal. I love the feeling of Friday nights – the anticipation of soaking up the sun on Saturday, enjoying time with friends, resisting the hustle and bustle of the work day and being able to play epic games of Battleship or Clue with my two boys.

I also love weekends because they give me time to try new recipes and I don’t have to fight crowds at local eateries.

I originally saw something like this recipe posted on Facebook. It caught my attention because it had all my favorite words in it: “bacon,” “sausage” and “pork.” Go ahead, admit it – those words caught your attention too. Initially, I didn’t even READ the recipe my Facebook friend linked to and as it turns out, this recipe I’ve developed from those key words is vastly different than the version of pork paradise he posted.  His version, however, was cooked in a smoker. I don’t have a smoker at home, but the addition of a little liquid smoke in the stuffing plus slow-roasting the pork in the oven produced just as good of a result.

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

Sausage-Stuffed, Bacon-Wrapped Pork Tenderloin, or, Heaven On A Plate

Serves 10

Cooking time: One hour, 5 minutes
Prep Time: 20 minutes

Ingredients:
1 (5 lb) pork tenderloin, trimmed of fat
1 lb reduced-fat bulk pork sausage
1/2 large white onion, diced
3/4 lb center-cut bacon
2 cups panko bread crumbs
1 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
1 large egg, beaten
1 Tbs liquid smoke
2 Tbs fresh rosemary, chopped
Salt and pepper
Kitchen twine

Directions:
Preheat oven to 325 F.

In a cast iron skillet or skillet with an oven-proof handle, brown bulk sausage with onion until sausage is cooked through and onion is translucent.  Transfer from skillet into a large bowl. Mix with panko bread crumbs, Parmesan cheese, rosemary, salt and pepper. Add beaten egg and liquid smoke. Mixture should be slightly damp.

Cut a pocket three-quarters of the way through the pork tenderloin, lengthwise.  Pack sausage stuffing into the pocket.

Place stuffed tenderloin back into the skillet.

Bind with three pieces of kitchen twine.

Using almost the entire pound of bacon, criss cross slices in an alternating pattern, covering the top of the stuffed pork tenderloin, tucking ends underneath.

Cover.

Roast at 325 F for an hour, or until internal temperature of the pork reaches 145 F.

Remove cover, turn broiler to high and brown the bacon, about 5 minutes.

Remove from oven and let rest for 5 minutes. 

Nutritional Information:  Calories per Serving: 713, Fat: 30 g (10.6 g Saturated Fat), Cholesterol: 250 mg, Sodium: 600 mg, Carbohydrates: 16.2 g, Fiber: 1.1 g, Protein: 88.6 g.



Shop the Sale: Asian-Style Loin Back Ribs


It’s easy to tell the difference between beef and pork ribs. But it’s also important to know what kind of beef or pork ribs you’re eating in order to prepare correctly. It’s all about location, location, location. Today, I’m just talking about loin pork ribs because they are on sale this week at Brookshire’s. 

Loin back ribs come from the same part of the hog as pork chops. They are also called “baby back ribs” in the grocery store. Loin ribs are smaller in size than spare ribs and are less meaty and less fatty. They are also more tender than spareribs.  

This week, shop the sale to find a great deal on Hormel loin back ribs at your local Brookshire’s, and try our oven-prepared Asian-Style Ribs. Not all of us are master grillers, and this delicious recipe gives you a way to stay cool indoors and enjoy a new twist on tender pork ribs. 

I like to serve these ribs with Asian slaw and an egg and scallion fried rice. Easy and delicious! 

Enjoy! 

Asian-Style Loin Back Ribs 

Ingredients:
6 garlic cloves, chopped
3 Tbs peeled and coarsely chopped fresh ginger
3/4 cup purchased jalapeno pepper jelly
1/2 cup purchased hoisin sauce (on the Asian aisle)
1/2 cup soy sauce
1/2 cup chopped cilantro
1/4 cup rice vinegar
6 Tbs fresh lime juice
2 Tbs sesame oil
2 Tbs Chinese chili-garlic sauce (on the Asian aisle)
9 lbs Hormel meaty loin back ribs

Directions:
In a food processor, combine everything except ribs. Pulse until smooth. Set the racks in a large baking dish and slather with the marinade. Cover and refrigerate overnight. Bring to room temperature before continuing. 

When ready to cook, preheat the oven to 400°F, and cover three large rimmed baking sheets with foil. Remove the ribs from the marinade, reserving marinade. Cut each rack so that each piece has 4 to 5 ribs. Place ribs on baking sheets, meaty side down. Roast each sheet in batches for 30 minutes, turning over halfway through. Also, baste ribs with the reserved marinade at least three times throughout roasting, including once at the end. Remove from oven and preheat broiler of oven. 

Broil ribs 3 inches from the heat for 3 minutes. Let ribs rest for 10 minutes, before slicing and serving. 



Dine-In: Stir-Fry Friday


We eat a lot of Asian stir-fries in our home. They are easy to throw together with whatever meats and vegetables I have on hand, and I always have rice or noodles in the pantry to serve alongside. 

Hoisin Beef is one of my teenage boys’ favorite stir-fries, and I usually also stir-fry broccoli to add something healthy and green to our plates. I’ve also had this dish served with steamed and then stir-fried sweet potatoes. 

Made from a combination of fermented soy, garlic, vinegar, chilies and some sort of sweetener, hoisin sauce is dark and thick with a strong salty and slightly sweet flavor. I dilute it here with a bit of water, as it can overpower the dish otherwise.


You can make homemade Hoisin Sauce, but I haven’t found that it’s any better than what you can find on the Asian aisle at Brookshire’s. And using purchased hoisin sauce makes this dish even easier on a Friday night after a long work week. In about the time it takes you to cook your rice, dinner is on the table, and your weekend can begin!
  

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

Hoisin Beef

Ingredients:
1 cup white rice
3/4 cup purchased hoisin sauce
1/2 cup water
1 1/2 Tbs soy sauce
1 1/2 Tbs brown sugar
4 Tbs canola oil
3 Tbs chopped green onion
2 Tbs finely chopped garlic
1 lb flank steak, sliced thinly against the grain
1 red bell pepper, seeded and sliced
1 cup snow peas

Directions: 
Cook the rice according to the package directions. 

In a small bowl, combine hoisin sauce, ½ cup water, soy sauce and brown sugar. In a small pan, heat    1 1/2 tablespoons oil over medium-high heat. Add the green onion and garlic and sauté 20 seconds. Add hoisin mixture, and bring to a boil. Cook until sauce thickens a bit, about 1½ minutes. Set aside. 

Heat a wok or large skillet to high heat. Add 2 tablespoons oil and heat through. Add steak and stir-fry until cooked through, 2-3 minutes. Transfer to a plate. 

Reduce heat to medium-high, and wipe out inside of wok with a paper towel. Add remaining ½ tablespoon oil. Add bell pepper and cook, stirring for 3 minutes. Add snow peas and cook for 1 minute more. 

Increase heat to high, and add the sauce to the wok. Add the steak, and stir-fry until warmed through, about 1 minute. Serve immediately over hot cooked rice. 



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