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Family Matters: Kraft Recipe Makers


I sit here writing this on about four hours of sleep. My sixth-grader caused me some major worry last night and I couldn’t get settled. Plus, my fourth-grader was leaving for camp this morning, and I knew we had to be up and at ‘em early. It’s raining and my full-time job has been hectic, as it is most days.

But, I know you, reading this, have NEVER been tired, worried, harried and bummed out all at the same time.

(SHE SAYS, LAUGHING SARCASTICALLY.)

Ha-ha, right? We’ve all been there- Some days more than others.

That’s where Kraft Recipe Makers come in. When you’re at the end of your rope (and even when you’re not), you can feel good about putting a nutritious, delicious meal on the table for your family with little effort and maximum comfort.

It’s quite simple; I can even do this math.

Take the Kraft Recipe Maker, add a few other ingredients and you have dinner. Voila! “Kraft Recipe Makers give you a jumpstart to a variety of fresh, home-cooked meals,”  according tothe Kraft website. “Each provides a recipe developed by our chefs, along with 2 carefully selected sauces that work together to provide layers of flavor. Just add your own fresh ingredients and follow the four-step recipe for a delicious dish your family will love.”

For the skillet, choose from sweet and sour chicken, chicken bruschetta pasta, beefy burritos, and sweet and sour meatballs, plus many more.

For the oven, choose from Asian fish tacos, Verde chicken enchiladas, Florentine stuffed chicken breasts and more.

Don’t forget the slow cooker, a personal favorite of mine. Try hickory barbecue beef, beef stroganoff, Tuscan stuffed flank steak and more.

Found on the shelf at your local Brookshire’s, Kraft Recipe Makers make dinner a breeze.



Family Matters: Balance


I don’t know about you, but there are times I really struggle with balance in my life. Right now is one of those times.

The beginning of the school year is always hectic. There are new class routines for my two boys, getting back into the habit of doing homework and studying math facts, spelling and vocabulary and starting activities again. Luke plays soccer. This year Curt wanted to try karate. In the meantime, I’m short-staffed at work and have been very involved in planning and executing an awesome event that takes place this weekend – Girl Power.

In short, all balance in my life has gone right out the window.

I have to actually remind myself to stop, slow down and not get (too) stressed out.  Because when I’m stressed, my kids are stressed, and that’s not good for anyone.

Here’s a few of the things I’ve found has helped my family achieve balance during the hectic, chaotic times:

1. I use the crock pot several times a week. With karate at 6 p.m. and soccer at 6 p.m. and not leaving work until after 5 p.m., if I hold on to any hope of getting dinner on the table at a reasonable hour, it’ll be something I’d prepared in the crock pot. Plus my house smells so good when we walk in that I’m convinced the added bonus is aromatherapy.
2. When I can’t use the crock pot, I’ve decided that tomato soup and a grilled cheese sandwich are a perfectly acceptable dinner.
3. I read the Brookshire’s circular and the Shop the Sale blogs and make my grocery list so not only am I saving money, but saving time by only shopping once during the week.
4. I turn off the car radio during my late afternoon commute and either ride in silence, which helps me unwind, or plug my iPhone into the car’s radio auxiliary and only listen to music – no talking. (Recent favorites: Amos Lee, Mumford & Sons, Iron and Wine, the soundtrack to The Hunger Games, The Decemberists and The Civil Wars).
5. Family Reading Time! The boys are required to read AT LEAST 20 minutes a night, so we turn off all electronics and all spend time with our books. We usually all end up curling up on the couch together and it’s quiet, it’s cuddly and we can all escape into our books together. (It’s also a good way to wind down before bedtime).
6. Remembering not to sweat the small stuff. Easier said than done. But in all actuality, washing the bed sheets can wait until the weekend and not every piece of mail has to be attended to immediately.
7. Oh, and did I mention tomato soup? 



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



Dine-In: Oven-roasted beef stew


This time of year just calls out for a nice big pot of soup or stew, something to warm you and the whole house while it cooks. This recipe gets a deep color (and a rich flavor that’s more sweet-savory than spicy) from a big dose of sweet paprika and roasted red peppers.

This takes a little work upfront, prepping and sautéing the vegetables and spices. But then it roasts slowly in the oven, with little attention needed, so it’s a perfect dish to try out on a lazy weekend afternoon.

HUNGARIAN BEEF STEW

Serves 6

Ingredients:
1 (3 1/2- to 4-pound) boneless beef chuck-eye roast
Kosher Salt
1/3 cup sweet paprika
1(12-ounce) jar                 roasted red peppers, drained and rinsed (about 1 cup)
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 tablespoon white vinegar
2 tablespoon olive oil
4 large onions, diced small (about 6 cups or 2 lbs.)
4 large carrots, peeled and cut into 1-inch-thick rounds (about 2 cups or .5 lb.)
1 bay leaf
1 cup beef broth
1/4 cup sour cream, optional
Fresh Ground black pepper
Cooked egg noodles

Directions:
Adjust oven rack to lower-middle position and heat oven to 325 degrees. Sprinkle meat evenly with 1 teaspoon kosher salt and let stand 15 minutes. Process paprika, roasted peppers, tomato paste, and 1 tablespoon vinegar in food processor until smooth, 1 to 2 minutes, scraping down sides as needed.

Combine oil, onions, and 1 teaspoon salt in large Dutch oven; cover and set over medium heat. Cook, stirring occasionally, until onions soften but have not yet begun to brown, 8 to 10 minutes.

Stir in paprika mixture; cook, stirring occasionally, until onions stick to bottom of pan, about 2 minutes.

Add beef, carrots, and bay leaf; stir until beef is well coated. Using rubber spatula, scrape down sides of pot.

Cover pot and transfer to oven. Cook until meat is almost tender and surface of liquid is 1/2 inch below top of meat, 2 to 2 1/2 hours, stirring every 30 minutes. Remove pot from oven and if needed add enough beef broth so that surface of liquid is ¼ inch from top of meat (beef should not be fully submerged). Return covered pot to oven and continue to cook until fork slips easily in and out of beef, about 30 minutes longer.

Skim fat off surface and add sour cream, if using. Remove bay leaf, adjust seasonings with salt and pepper, and serve.



Shop the Sale: Naturally low-fat chicken breasts


If you overindulged both diet-wise and budget-wise over the holidays, it’s time to get back on track. So we are helping out with some terrific buy-one, get-one-for-1-cent deals this week at your neighborhood store.

And that includes some staples that will help both your wallet and your waistline, like Pilgrim boneless skinless chicken breasts. Buy a package, get another for a penny. And because the skin – by far the fattiest, most calorie-laden part of poultry – has already been removed, you start out with a lean, protein-dense main ingredient.

Need some inspiration? Search for some on our recipe database, on our newly redesigned website.  You’ll find hundreds of easy, delicious recipes to jumpstart your menu planning, like this chicken and brown rice pilaf , ready in just 20 minutes!

Or, here’s a simple baked chicken recipe that gets lots of flavor, but not too much fat, from Parmesan cheese and garlic. Pair with rice pilaf, a green vegetable, and fruit for dessert, and you won’t break the budget OR your diet.

Parmesan-lemon chicken

Serves four

Ingredients:
Four boneless, skinless chicken breasts
2 tablespoons butter
4 cloves garlic, minced or pushed through a garlic press
Juice of three lemons
6 tablespoons parmesan cheese, shredded or grated, divided
1 tablespoon dried parsley
1/2 teaspoon chili flakes, optional
Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

In saucepan over low heat, melt butter. Add minced garlic and saute until soft, two-three minutes. Remove from heat and let cool for five minutes. Add lemon juice, four tablespoons parmesan, parsley, chili flakes if using, and a dash of salt and pepper. If mixture is too thick, thin with a little water or chicken broth.

Spray a baking dish with nonstick cooking spray. Place chicken breasts in pan and pour butter-lemon-parmesan mixture over them. Bake for about 20-25 minutes; remove from oven and sprinkle with remaining two tablespoons of parmesan cheese. Bake for another 5-10 minutes, or until a meat thermometer inserted into the thickest part of breast registers 165 to 170 degrees.



Product Talk: Home-style tamales


For some families, getting together to make tamales for Christmas is as much of a tradition as stringing lights, putting up a tree and making cookies. Tamales are so labor-intensive, you just about need a whole set of cousins, sisters, grandchildren or friends to make the time fly and those corn-husk wrappers fill up quickly.

But if your family hasn’t found time this year for a tamale-making party – or if you’ve never developed the tradition but have always relied on buying someone else’s tamales – we have you covered. We have recently introduced some wonderful home-style tamales in our stores with delis, sold by the half-dozen so you can get enough for all your holiday get-togethers.

These are good-sized, meaty tamales, with a moist, traditional shell of masa around a flavorful filling, and all wrapped up in the classic corn husk. We have three varieties: Traditional shredded pork, shredded chicken, and a more modern, vegetarian-friendly variety, spinach and Monterrey jack cheese. They are made with lean, flavorful meat, so they are moist, but not greasy.

The tamales are already steamed and sold warm from our steam table or warmers that you will find in our deli area. You can eat them right away, or warm up at home, in your own steamer or even in the microwave.

The tamales also star in our holiday tamale dinner, new this year. It includes two dozen tamales, two pounds of charro beans, and two pounds of Spanish rice. This dinner will feed up to 8 diners, for an everyday price of just $29.99. This meal deal will be available through Christmas at selected stores, as supplies last.  Or, you can just pick up tamales on their own. Either way, this may be the year that you decide your annual tamale party doesn’t have to be about making tamales – just eating them.

 



Dine-In: Wild-rice dressing


If you’re like most of us, you end up enjoying not just one turkey-and-dressing feast during the Thanksgiving-to-New-Year’s stretch. You have two or three or four, when you add in dinner at both sides of the family, the church supper, the office potluck and other festivities. 

So if you’re looking for something to make the next holiday meal a little different from the others, here’s a new take on traditional dressing. It has some of the familiar flavors, such as sage and thyme, but instead of dried bread or cornbread, this uses a combination of white and wild rice, and includes dried fruit as a complement to the onion and celery. 

This dressing goes well with turkey, but it also makes an excellent side dish for roast pork or even a mild baked fish. 

Wild Rice-Cranberry Stuffing

Makes about 8 cups 

Ingredients:
1/4 cup butter, divided
2 cups red onion, diced
1 cup celery, diced
5 cups chicken stock
1 1/4 cup wild rice
1 1/4 cups long grain white rice
1 1/2 cups dried cranberries
1 cup golden raisins
1 tsp. thyme
1 tsp. sage, dried
1 cup toasted pecans, chopped coarsely
Salt
Pepper 

Directions:

Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. Butter a 13 x 9 casserole or baking dish, and set aside. 

In skillet, melt 2 tablespoons butter. Add onion and celery and sauté until soft, about 4 to 5 minutes. Set aside.  In a large pan, bring stock to boil. Add wild rice and return to a boil. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer 30 minutes.

Stir in white rice, cover and simmer until liquid is almost absorbed, about 15 minutes. 

Stir in cranberries, thyme, sage, onions, celery and remaining two tablespoons of butter. Cover and simmer about 3 minutes. Stir in pecans. Salt and pepper to taste. 

Transfer stuffing to prepared baking dish and cover with lid or aluminum foil. Bake 35 to 45 minutes, or until heated through.



Tex-Mex cheese steak nachos


Ingredients:
1 Tbs vegetable oil
1 cup chopped poblano pepper
1 cup chopped white onion
6 oz sirloin, flank steak or rib eye, sliced into strips and then cut into bites
1 jar Leigh Oliver’s White Queso, any flavor
Salt and pepper
1 can refried beans or refried black beans
6 oz tortilla chips 

Garnish: sour cream, chopped tomato, guacamole, chopped onion, jalapeño

Directions:
Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add peppers and onions
and sauté for about 4 minutes, until tender. Remove peppers and onions from
skillet and set aside. Sprinkle sirloin with salt and pepper. Add to skillet and cook
over medium-high heat until brown, but still medium-rare, about 4 minutes.
Remove from heat. Heat refried beans in microwave until warmed throughout,
about 2 minutes, stirring once. 

Arrange chips on serving platter and top each with a dollop of refried beans and a slice of sirloin. Drizzle with Leigh Oliver’s White Queso and garnish as desired. Serve immediately.



America’s Dessert with a Cherry on top


No dessert could be simpler than the
ice cream sundae–a scoop of ice cream,
a sweet topping, and the ubiquitous whipped cream and cherry at the top.

However, icons are never really that simple,
and, perhaps more than any other dish,
the sundae is an American icon. 

Like people, nations are what they eat. More than any other native dish, the ice cream sundae is an essential reminder of the American genius for invention, passion for indulgence, and reputation for wackiness…it’s as messy and irresistible as democracy itself.     

Source: icecreamsundae.com



Dine-In: Curry Chicken and Mango


Serves: 4

Prep Time: 20 minutes, plus marinating  Cook Time: 10 minutes 

Marinade

Ingredients:

3 garlic cloves, minced

1/2 cup sliced green onion

2 Tbs chopped cilantro

2 Tbs curry powder

1 Tbs less sodium soy sauce

1 Tbs Food Club Light Brown Sugar

1 Tbs Food Club Extra Virgin Olive Oil

1 tsp Food Club Ground Black Pepper

1/2 tsp Food Club Salt

 

Ingredients: 

1 lb boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut into 1-inch cubes

2 medium mangos, peeled, cut into 1-inch cubes

1 red bell pepper, cut into 1-inch cubes

Directions: 

In a large bowl combine marinade ingredients; mix well. Add cubed chicken and mangos to bowl with marinade. Toss chicken and mangos until evenly coated. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour. 

Thread chicken, mangos and bell pepper onto skewers. If using wooden skewers, soak skewers for at least an hour before using. 

Heat grill to medium heat. Put skewers on grill and cook for 2 to 4 minutes, flip and cook for an additional 4 to 6 minutes. Remove chicken and mangos from skewers and serve over warm rice. 

Nutritional Information: Calories per Serving: 324, Fat: 8 g (2 g Saturated Fat), Cholesterol: 96 mg, Sodium: 527 mg, Carbohydrates: 26 g, Fiber: 4 g, Protein: 37 g. 

© 2011, Brookshire Grocery Co.  Nutrient counts are rounded to the nearest whole number.  All dietary and lifestyle changes should be supervised by a physician.



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Copyright © 2010-2014, Brookshire’s. All rights reserved.
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.

Healthy Living

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.

Family Matters

Ideas for the whole family come to you every Thursday.

Dine In

Stop fighting the crowds, save money and dine in, every Friday.

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