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Product Talk: Brookshire’s Sour Cream-Blueberry Coffee Cake

Brookshire’s Sour Cream-Blueberry Coffee CakeGrowing up, we’d always go blueberry picking at least once a summer. We’d come home with purple-stained tongues and our bellies full, our buckets full of enough berries to last the summer.

When my boys were small and we lived near a blueberry farm, we went blueberry picking pretty frequently, too. Some things don’t change. I ate as many as I picked and came home with a purple tongue and enough berries to get us through the winter months.

Brookshire’s Sour Cream is a wonderful ingredient to pair with blueberries.

You can serve fresh blueberries with a dollop of sour cream and a sprinkle of brown sugar, or you can bake it into a pie or coffee cake.

The rich, smooth, creamy sour cream provides a nice balance for the sweet, slightly tart blueberries, and the fresh taste of them both celebrates summer.

Brookshire’s Sour Cream-Blueberry Coffee Cake

3/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 1/2 cups sugar
4 large eggs
1 tsp pure vanilla
3 cups all purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 cup Brookshire’s Sour Cream

1/4 cup brown sugar, packed
1 Tbs all purpose flour
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
2 cups fresh or frozen blueberries (If using frozen, do not thaw.)

1 cup confectioners’ sugar
2 to 3 Tbs 2-percent milk
1 Tbs lemon zest

Preheat oven to 350° F. Prepare a 10-inch tube pan with nonstick cooking spray and flour. Shake out excess flour.

In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar until light, golden-yellow and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in vanilla. Stir together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Add to creamed mixture, alternating with sour cream and beating after each addition.

Spread about 1/3 of the batter into the pan. Combine brown sugar, flour and cinnamon; sprinkle 1/2 over batter. Top with 1/2 of the berries. Repeat layers. Top with remaining batter.

Bake approximately 1 hour or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes in the pan, and then remove to a wire rack to cool completely. Combine glaze ingredients; drizzle over warm coffee cake.

Serves 10 to 12

Nutritional Information: Calories Per Serving: 448, Fat: 17 g (10 g Saturated Fat), Cholesterol: 114 mg, Sodium: 328 mg, Carbohydrates: 68 g, Fiber: 1 g, Protein: 6 g.

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Product Talk: Texas Meat Packers Seasoned Beef for Fajitas

Texas Meat Packers Seasoned Beef for FajitasYesterday morning, I got the text I love from Paul.

“Hey, I’ll take care of dinner tonight.”

Now in all fairness, he does that quite frequently, but it was especially wonderful yesterday as I was trying to shake a two-day migraine and wrangle soccer games, regular weekend tasks and the flurry of things to keep up with at the end of the school year.

I love it when Paul cooks because, very often, he makes something I’ve never had before.

Last night was no exception.

He brought Texas Meat Packers Seasoned Beef for Fajitas. I’d never seen this product before, but it’s not the last time I will buy it, I assure you.

The Texas Meat Packers website describes this melt-in-your mouth beef as, “Texas Style Fajitas brings a slow-cooked smoky edge of hardwood mesquite flavoring to a TexMex Classic! Our approach accentuates flavors and aromas of old-world peppers and spices, and that sneaky lingering heat you get from Hatch green chilies.”

The fajita beef was fork-tender and delicious grilled. Texas Meat Packers also makes chicken fajitas and will offer pork soon.

We didn’t make fajitas with it, but here’s what we did do!

Texas Meat Packers Seasoned Steaks

2 pkgs Texas Meat Packers Seasoned Beef for Fajitas
1 cup sharp cheddar cheese, grated

Pico de Gallo:
1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
4 green onions (white and green parts), diced
1 jalapeño, diced
Juice from 2 large limes
Salt and pepper, to taste

Prepare pico de gallo, and place in refrigerator to let flavors blend.

Prepare grill to medium-high heat. Grill steaks, about 3 minutes per side, until cooked to desired doneness. Remove from grill; top with pico de gallo and cheddar cheese. Place under broiler on high heat until cheese is melted. Serve immediately.

Serves 6

Nutritional Information: Calories Per Serving: 401, Calories from Fat: 194, Fat: 22 g (10 g Saturated Fat), Cholesterol: 109 mg, Sodium: 236 mg, Carbohydrates: 3.4 g, Fiber: 1 g, Sugar: 2 g, Protein: 46 g.

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Product Talk: Canada Dry Ginger Ale

Canada Dry Ginger AleThe entire first trimester of my second pregnancy, you’d never see me without a glass of Canada Dry Ginger Ale. I had to sip it from a glass (don’t even TRY to give it to me in a plastic cup). It had to have a straw, and it had to have three ice cubes. Not four, not two, not crushed ice. Three ice cubes. Three.

Pregnancy neuroses aside, Canada Dry Ginger Ale has been an enduring favorite.

It was always what my mom brought to my bedside to sip on during my sickly days as a child.

It sees me through many a baby shower, bridal shower or brunch where some sort of fabulous, fizzy punch drink is required.

It’s also great to settle the stomach of a couple of guys who get overheated or eat too fast.

Canada Dry Ginger Ale is made with 100 percent real ginger. It was first made in Canada over 100 years ago. It became popular in the United States during Prohibition, and its popularity has been going strong ever since.

Gold Coast Punch

1/2 cup lemon juice
1 cup pineapple juice
2 cans orange juice, frozen concentrate
2 quarts Canada Dry Ginger Ale
1/4 cup maraschino cherries

Combine lemon juice, pineapple juice and concentrated orange juice. Mix well. Pour over ice in punch bowl. Fill the bowl with ice-cold Canada Dry Ginger Ale. Garnish with maraschino cherries.

Serves 25

Nutritional Information: Calories Per Serving: 44, Calories from Fat: 1, Fat: 0 g (0 g Saturated Fat), Cholesterol: 0 mg, Sodium: 7 mg, Carbohydrates: 11 g, Fiber: 0 g, Sugar: 10 g, Protein: 0 g.

Recipe from

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Product Talk: Food Club Pimentos

Food Club PimentosI think it’s safe to say that pimento cheese is a Southern thing. Not that they don’t eat it north of the Mason-Dixon line, but I’d venture a guess that Southerners have elevated the making of this cheese to an art form.

I’d never tried pimento cheese until I moved to Texas, which isn’t to say I’m not Southern. I fight a never-ending battle against Texans who label me as a Yankee. I’m from the capital of the Confederacy, y’all; let’s be clear.

What is a pimento anyway?

A pimento is a variety of the red, sweet chile pepper. Spanish in origin, it’s actually a fruit that is usually pickled.

You can buy it in a jar in Brookshire’s.

You might see pimentos used to stuff green olives, and you’ll definitely see them in pimento cheese.

Pimento cheese is really a composite of a few different cheeses with seasonings and these little peppers.

I’m making some for an upcoming salad supper (yes, it’s a salad, as it combines more than two small pieces of food served together) and serving it on garlic toast, but it’s also amazing as the filling in a grilled cheese sandwich.

Pimento Cheese

3/4 cup mayonnaise
4 oz cream cheese, softened
1 (4 oz) jar diced pimento, drained
1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp onion, finely grated
1/4 tsp ground red pepper
1 tsp Louisiana Hot Sauce
1 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp pepper
8 oz extra-sharp cheddar cheese, finely shredded
8 oz Monterey-Jack cheese, shredded

Combine all ingredients in the bowl of an electric mixer or food processor until thoroughly incorporated.


Store in refrigerator for up to 1 week.

Serves 12

Nutritional Information: Calories Per Serving: 170, Calories from Fat: 131, Fat: 15 g, (7 g Saturated Fat), Cholesterol: 34 mg, Sodium: 421 mg, Carbohydrates: 5 g, Fiber: 0 g, Sugar: 2 g, Protein: 6 g.

Product Talk: Grub Rub

Gordon’s Grub RubToday, we are smoking pork ribs, and there’s only one thing Paul wants to put on them: Grub Rub.

Gordon’s Grub Rub is a seasoning, tenderizer and marinade all in one delicious blend of spices. Seriously, you can use it for anything.

Gordon’s Grub Rub is an old family secret, and according to their website, their claim to fame is that their rub doesn’t RUB off of meats and veggies, excuse the bad pun. The website says that as soon as the rub becomes damp, it clings to the meat, a claim we’ve definitely found to be accurate. Because it clings so much better, it not only flavors and tenderizes the meat, but it forms a beautiful crust as the meat is cooking.

Made in Katy, Texas, Grub Rub is sold on the spice aisle of your local Brookshire’s in a 13-ounce shaker. It contains 3 calories for 1/3 teaspoon, 87 milligrams of sodium and zero fat. They don’t really give away the blend in the ingredients listing, though, or on the website. The label simply reads “sugar, salt, pepper, spices, garlic, onion and tenderizers.”

Grub Rub is gluten-free, has no preservatives, and has no MSG.

As they say (it’s true!), “there’s no need to add anything else.”

Product Talk: Brookshire’s Pharmacy App

Brookshire’s Pharmacy AppThis might not be something you can buy at Brookshire’s, but it’s definitely something you need from Brookshire’s.

Stop what you’re doing right now (reading this!), reach for your smartphone, and download the Brookshire’s RX Pharmacy app. It’s a game-changer.

Good for use at Brookshire’s, Super 1 Foods and FRESH by Brookshire’s, this app lets you manage your prescriptions from the tap of your screen.

The first time I used it, I had three prescriptions to refill.

I used the barcode scanner on my smartphone to read the label on my prescription, tapped “refill” and moved on to the next prescription! It was that easy.

The automated phone line is great, too, but this shaved minutes off the phone call.

The app also gives you access to Medline Plus health tips, a store locator for your nearest pharmacy, a quick link to the grocery app and, of course, a place to manage all your prescriptions.

By the time you’d have read this, your app should have downloaded and you’re ready to go. Now you can spend that extra time shopping the beautiful produce department or your other favorite aisles at Brookshire’s.

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Product Talk: Hunt’s Meal Starters

Hunt’s Meal Starters“I have a Product Talk product for you to write about,” Paul told me recently.

Of course, I wanted to know what it was.

Of course, if I was going to write about it, we had to try it.

“It’s kind of tricky to find on the shelves,” he said.

(It was.)

Once we found it, it was definitely worth the search.

Hunt’s Meal Starters are shelved with the canned tomato products. There is Hunt’s Mild Chili Starter, Hunt’s Green Spices for Medium Chili, Hunt’s Chipotle Spices for Hot Chili, and Hunt’s Seasoned Tomato Sauce for Meatloaf.

We picked up the can of the meatloaf starter.

The tomato sauce (Hunt’s premium, of course) is seasoned with all the herbs and spices you’ll need to get a slow-baked meatloaf flavor out of a dish that comes together in 30 minutes. (We made individual loaves and topped them with the sauce.) The sauce gives the meat a slow-cooked flavor, which is a combination of smoky, tangy and savory. It would also be a delicious addition to mix into the meat mixture for your loaf as well as pouring some on top.

I especially loved how it made putting together a meal so quick and simple.

We’ll be trying the other varieties as well.

Product Talk: Green Onions

Green OnionsRaw onions were not my jam.

However, there have been certain events recently that have changed my mind.

I’ve been buying green onions because Paul loves them. Me? Not so much.

Until I got a wild hair and sprinkled them on my baked potato one night.

What had I been missing all my life?

Green onions are long and stalky. You can use the green parts and the white parts. Heck, you can eat them all the way down to the roots if you wish. Green onions are more mild than larger bulb onions. Available year-round, green onions should be chosen for their bright green, firm stalks and fresh scent.

Store them upright in the refrigerator and use them within several days.

I’ve been using them on baked potatoes, in salads, in soups, in my deviled eggs for Easter, in the brine for my Easter ham, sprinkled on tacos and even on my bagel thins on top of a schmear of whipped cream cheese.

The really cool thing about green onions is also a really cool activity to do with your kids. After you’ve chopped off the green parts of the onion, place the white bulbous base, with root pieces still attached, in a glass of shallow water and put it on a windowsill. The green parts will start to rapidly return, and you can get another use or two of the onions without losing flavor. Plus, it’s just fun to watch.

Product Talk: Sirloin Strip Steaks

Sirloin Strip SteaksYesterday afternoon, we went to Brookshire’s to pick out something for dinner.

We didn’t have anything particular in mind (except that I wanted mashed potatoes as a side dish), but we tend to lean toward red meat. Specifically, we tend to be ribeye folks.

Yesterday, salivating over the meat case in Brookshire’s, we saw some lovely sirloin strips.

A sirloin strip, also called the Kansas City Strip steak, is a cut of steak from the short loin around the back midsection of the cow. This particular muscle does little work, producing a tender cut of meat, although not quite as tender as a ribeye or tenderloin.

As far as fat content goes, it’s somewhere in between the aforementioned two cuts.

There is no bone in this cut of steak, just some slight marbling and enough fat to add flavor to the meat. As always, you want to bring it to room temperature before grilling or cooking. Season with salt, pepper and, our favorite, David Wade’s Worcestershire Powder.

For a less expensive price, it was a delicious steak, juicy, tender and full of flavor.

Product Talk: Gevalia Coffee

Gevalia CoffeeI remember when Gevalia coffees were only sold by mail-order. The commercial would come on television with an elegant couple sipping coffee in an elegant location, and you’d have to order from the 1-800 number that flashed across the screen because of course you wanted to be elegant, too.

I love that you can now buy it in Brookshire’s instead. (I feel elegant when I shop at Brookshire’s!)

The distinctive yellow package stands out on the coffee aisle, giving way to rich, smooth blends of coffee inside.

Gevalia, a Swedish brand, has been making coffee for over 150 years. Today, the coffee is available in 30 roast and ground coffees, iced coffees and Keurig® K-Cup® pods.

This morning, I sipped Costa Rica Regular Ground, a medium coffee (the medium varieties supposedly have the most caffeine), and even though I was at my kitchen table in my leggings and T-shirt, I still felt elegant.

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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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