Cheese, Potatoes are Classic Comfort Foods

Fuzzy sweaters, warm blankets and steaming hot comfort food – something about cool weather awakens the craving for soul-warming dishes.

What if your craving for comfort food comes on a busy weeknight? Cut time, not corners. You need something with little preparation and delicious flavor. Here’s all it takes to make your next gourmet meal in no time:

  • Make potatoes the star of your next quick, gourmet meal. How about no peeling, no washing, and delicious flavor? Look for a special brand of multiple potato varieties bred to grow smaller, Tasteful Selections. These baby potatoes are the perfect size for quick cooking. Their thin skin does not required peeling, and they are pre-washed for your convenience. With the many varieties available, you are sure to find the perfect potato for your meal. For more ideas, visit and click on recipes.
  • Use prepared and fresh ingredients for your homemade meals. For example, you can create a stir-fry with frozen, grilled chicken breast and pre-cut vegetables from the salad bar. Serve with hot Tasteful Selections bite-sized potatoes mashed, buttered or topped with your favorite ingredients for a perfectly well-rounded meal.
  • When you cook, double your favorite recipes and

Chase Away Winter Chills with Meals From Your Pantry

There’s nothing quite like a hearty, homemade meal to help warm up those cold winter nights. And with a well-stocked pantry – or “Cantry” – delicious meals, like Turkey Green Bean Chili and Home-Style Chicken Pot Pie, are just a few cans away.

Because cans lock in foods’ freshness and nutrition, stocking up on staples like canned tomatoes, green beans, peas and canned chicken means that you have access to wholesome ingredients all winter long. Plus, the more cans you store in your Cantry, the fewer last minute trips you have to make to the supermarket.

So this season, when you’re searching for satisfying, heart-warming meals that you and your family can cozy up to, start by looking in your Cantry.

For more recipe inspiration and to learn how you can get cooking with cans this winter and year round, visit, and

Home-Style Chicken Pot Pie


Home-Style Chicken Pot Pie with onion, potato, peas, carrots, celery, cream of chicken soup, chunk

A Simple, Sunset Happy Hour

(Family Features) Happy Hour. A time of day renowned the world over for relaxing just before dinner with small bites and small pours. To create your own happy hour at home for family and friends, try a bite-sized menu like this one that pairs light, flavorful dishes with food-friendly wines, such as Mirassou Winery’s new red blend, Sunset Red. This Pinot Noir-based red blend features fresh, dark fruit flavors of black cherry and blackberry with notes of caramel and brown sugar. The wine’s deep red color reflects shades of a bright California sunset and provides a perfect sipping experience as the day winds down and your happy hour begins.

To explore more wine pairing options, visit

Sunset Sliders

  • 1 pound lean ground beef (preferably grass fed)
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped baby portabella mushrooms
  • 1/4 cup minced shallots or red onion
  • 1/4 cup Mirassou Sunset Red
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh rosemary
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • Freshly ground pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup shredded aged Gouda cheese
  • 8 brioche, ciabatta, or other small slider rolls
  • 8 thin Roma tomato slices
  • 4

Is In-Store Shopping Becoming Extinct?

We are all guilty of browsing an online store when we are supposed to be submitting an expense report or some other tedious work task. The truth is, online shopping is something that has touched each and every one of us in one way or another. Studies show that consumers will be pushed more towards the internet to full fill their shopping needs rather than fighting crowds in actual stores. Even Black Friday showed us how true this is. People took to social media and their favorite store websites and shopped before they even had their Thanksgiving dessert.

Speaking of dessert, did you know you could even buy your groceries online now? Yes, you can. With the recent rise in sites like Peapod, you can now take online shopping to a whole new level and get the ingredients for your Sunday family dinner without leaving the comfort of your home.

Even social media has joined the bandwagon of online shopping. If you’ve noticed Facebook and Pinterest have gained much visibility by incorporating a “buy” button for advertisers and users. Now we no longer have to leave the app to purchase our favorite product, so we can continue to scroll through everyone’s

Why Attend Culinary School?

Attending a culinary school is necessary if you are pursing a career in culinary arts.  Even if you are a “great cook”, it takes professional training in culinary arts to become an expert.  If you want to get a job in a good restaurant, you will need professional qualifications that come from attending a regular culinary school. Many people think that culinary school is very expensive.  Any education is costly and culinary programs are no exception. 

Many people think that culinary arts are a talent and cannot be taught.  Culinary arts are both an Art and a Science.  In culinary training you will learn about ingredients and how they are used in the foods that you cook.  The time you spend learning about ingredients and additives in your culinary program will help you to be a well-informed chef. 

Chef, caterer, pastry arts and restaurant cook are the most familiar four options in culinary school.  There are, however, hundreds of jobs in the food industry. Students may want to direct their Culinary Career in the direction of management as executive chef, or in sales as a director of catering.  There are also culinary programs in food and beverage management.   Many people who hold

Save Your Time & Money by Making Online Food Delivery at Affordable Prices

Just like everything else has evolved over the decades and the passing years, food has evolved pretty much too. It’s quite unbelievable to see the advancements when it comes to the things that we eat. There are so many exotic dishes available that our tummies can just never have enough of it.

Since there are so many varieties of food available everywhere, we want to keep on change our preferences. We want to try and eat every different thing that we possibly can but that’s a bit of a tedious task, isn’t it? We are always so engrossed in our work that we barely have time to get out and try a new food item or even that what we like because we all have rigid daily routines. It’s hard to take time out to get ourselves food that we really want and if that food is available in a store which is located far away from your location then you totally have to forget about it.

Online Food Orders and Delivery Are Gaining Popularity

Since getting food for yourself seems to be such a huge problem if you’re stuck up with work somewhere or in a situation where you can’t seem to

Hungry in the West End – Part 4 Food Pantries Feed All Comers

By Jody McPhillips and John Martin

Hungry in the West End addresses senior hunger in Providence’s West End community — an area of hard-core poverty burdened further by the recession. This series attempts to put a face on the problem of senior hunger in the West End and throughout America, and to give voice to those who are responding to the challenge of feeding the hungry. This is Part 4 of the series. Start here to begin with Part 1.


In the heart of the West End, in a quiet corner in the basement of Ebenezer Baptist Church there is food every Wednesday. It is one of the ways hungry seniors in the West End are getting by.

“The number of families has tripled, I think, in the last several years, and the church has sought to meet that need,” says Pastor Carl Balark. Patrons “may or may not be a part of the congregation. They just come in the neighborhood, they know food is available and they get the food.”

Balark is proud of his congregation but he especially praises deacons George Garedo and Ben McClary. On our visit to the Ebenezer pantry, they explained that, on average, about 65 West End families are

Five reasons why sugar is added to food

From a food science and technology perspective, sugar (sucrose) plays several roles when it comes to the functional properties in food. In the September issue of Comprehensive Reviews in Food Science and Food Safety published by the Institute of Food Technologists (IFT), authors from the University of Minnesota write about the functional properties of sugar and why they are often added to foods.

1. Taste: Sweetness improves the palatability of many foods. Adding sugar to foods with high nutrient quality may increase the chance they are consumed. In addition, sugar plays an important role in contributing to the flavor profile of foods by interacting with other ingredients to enhance or lessen certain flavors.

2. Color and Flavor: The Maillard reaction is a chemical reaction between amino acids and reducing sugars that gives browned foods their desirable flavor; and caramelization is fundamental to the formation of color in several food products and can’t happen without the addition of sugar. Caramelization happens when sugar is heated to a certain temperature and is used in a wide variety of products including sauces, candies, breads, jams, and dessert wine (Kroh, 1993). The Maillard reaction also provides desirable flavor formation in foods such as

A Culinary Classic

From the classics of yesterday to favorites on the table today, peanut butter is a delicious ingredient enjoyed in recipes generation after generation.

“Whether it features creamy or crunchy peanut butter, is a snack your grandmother made, a side dish your dad loved to cook at the holidays, or even a main entree you love serving your family on a busy weeknight, we want to honor your go-to, time-honored recipe,” said Leslie Wagner, executive director, Southern Peanut Growers (SPG).

To celebrate everyone’s timeless taste for this sticky staple, SPG is hosting its annual “PB My Way” national recipe contest calling for all-time favorite peanut butter recipes. Home bakers and cooks around the country are encouraged to share their favorite recipe inspired by this rich and versatile kitchen staple. Recipe submissions are due by April 15, 2015.

For more contest information, to submit your own recipe and to view other delicious peanut butter dishes, visit and the SPG Facebook page.

Peanut Butter Surprise Cookies

  • 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups old fashioned oats
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups unsalted butter,

A Complete Holiday Table

Nothing pleases the senses like a home filled with family, friends and the welcoming aroma of a holiday meal.

Whether you’re cooking up a full-menu feast from your own kitchen or you need a delicious idea or two to share at a potluck-style gathering — these dishes please the palate. With timeless flavors of turkey and butternut squash, or treats that charmingly display a symbol of the season, guests will surely be encouraged to dig in.

Roast Turkey with Sausage Stuffing


For more recipes, visit

  • 1 pound breakfast pork sausage
  • 1 1/2 cups hot water
  • 2 packages (6 ounces each) Stove Top Stuffing Mix for Turkey
  • 1 Butterball Frozen Whole Turkey (10 pounds), thawed
  1. Heat oven to 325°F.
  2. Brown sausage in skillet; drain, reserving 1/2 cup drippings. Add drippings to large bowl; stir in hot water. Add stuffing mixes and sausage; stir just until stuffing mixes are moistened.
  3. Stuff neck and body cavities lightly with stuffing. Truss turkey; place, breast-side up, on rack in large roasting pan sprayed with cooking spray. Spoon any remaining stuffing into

A Better Birthday Bash

No birthday party is complete without a birthday cake… or is it? Put a unique twist on your celebration by switching out the typical sheet cake for something a little more festive.

When it comes to choosing an alternative, nearly any dessert will do. The key to making it feel like a party-worthy treat is all in the presentation. Clever names and decor can make any everyday dessert extra special. For example, if your theme is zoo safari, serve desserts iced in animal pattern stripes and spots.

So set your theme and borrow one of these ideas to get your party planning creativity flowing:

Radical rice treats: Prepare everyone’s favorite crispy squares as usual, or mix in peanut butter, nuts or flavored chips for an extra touch of flavor. Frost the tops and sides of each bar and top with sprinkles or decorative icing for mini-cakes for everyone, or dip just one end in a colored frosting and stack in staggered piles for a pretty display.

Cake pops: A trendy alternative to traditional cake, these bite-sized pops are fun on a stick for guests of all ages. For a grown-up crowd, drizzle pops with a liqueur-infused glaze and let the good times roll.

Sweet single

A Fun Fiesta Feast for Cinco de Mayo

Cinco de Mayo is one flavorful fiesta and while it may land on a Monday this year, that doesn’t mean you can’t have some fun.

Inspired by delicious Mexican cuisine, this holiday is all about flavorful recipes and great times spent with friends. This year, make things simple and celebrate this festive day with these stress free tips:

  • Keep the menu simple with 4-Ingredient Salsa Verde Chicken Enchiladas, rice and refried beans.
  • Make your own tortilla chips. They are an easy, delicious side dish and you can wipe away oil splatters quickly with a tough cleaner, such as Formula 409, to make cleaning a breeze. Just cut soft tortillas into triangles, fry until crispy and sprinkle with salt, or even a squeeze of lime.
  • Create a focal point for all of your party decor with tissue paper flowers in bright springtime colors and a fiesta or party banner to set the stage. -Tip from NoBiggie
  • For less clean-up, take the party outdoors. Paper plates and inexpensive table covers will make clean-up quick. Pick red, green and white for a color scheme inspired by the flag of Mexico.
  • Try a taco bar. They are a fun way to serve your guests, and you can use your disposable

American Classic

No picnic or potluck is complete without potato salad. Whether it’s served warm, cold, creamy, cheesy or with a splash of vinegar, the dish is a true American cookout classic.

Potato salads are easy to make and even easier to pack full of flavor. Craft your own potato salad by cutting a delicious, Idaho® potato into cubes with the skins still on. Boil in water for about 8 to 15 minutes, then check for doneness by piercing a cube with a fork or skewer. If the fork goes through the potato with little resistance, drain the potatoes and return them to the pot. Add your favorite dressing and ingredients while the potatoes are still warm. Warm potatoes more easily absorb the delicious dressing.

These decadent dishes are best eaten the day after they’re made to give the flavors time to meld. When you’re ready to serve your potato salad, keep it cold by placing your serving dish in a larger bowl filled with ice.

Family meals are always better with delicious, flavorful potatoes. Always look for the “Grown in Idaho” seal to be sure you’re buying genuine Idaho potatoes. For more recipes for salads and other potato dishes, visit

Add Seafood to Your Family’s Diet

The easiest way to get the family together for a meal is with a delicious, homemade dish with tasty ingredients, such as protein-packed shrimp.

There are many scrumptious reasons for including shrimp into your family’s diet. In fact, the American Heart Association and other experts recommend eating seafood at least twice a week, and the FDA just announced this year that pregnant women should consume between 8-12 ounces of seafood a week. It’s easy to work towards this dietary goal by introducing Gulf shrimp into your diet. This versatile protein is easy to prepare; has a wonderfully salty and fresh flavor from the nutrient-rich environment in which it is caught; and is also widely available fresh and frozen at your local grocery.

Better-for-you benefits

Flavorful Gulf shrimp contains high-quality protein and a variety of essential nutrients, such as vitamins B-6 and B-12. Plus, it’s a natural source of vitamin D, low in saturated fat and offers healthy omega-3 fatty acids that have been shown to help reduce the risk of heart disease.

Simple substitutions

Add flair and flavor to your family’s meal routine (and keep the kids happy) with these easy meal ideas that incorporate Gulf shrimp:

  • Breakfast: Dice it up and add to omelets with

A Quick and Easy Weeknight Meal

Now that winter is behind us and schedules are beginning to fill up, the best kind of weeknight meal is a quick, easy and delicious one.

In about 15 minutes, Antipasto Bean Salad can be on the table, or ready for toting to the office potluck or a neighborhood picnic. Starring classic antipasto ingredients, this main dish pasta salad doesn’t require cooking, except for the pasta. While the pasta is boiling, there’s time to prep the other ingredients.

Start with high-quality prepared foods that can be purchased at the supermarket. No gourmet food shopping necessary, but the finished salad will be reminiscent of one from a specialty deli or food shop. Begin with a can of READ 3 or 4 Bean Salad. This combination of green, wax and kidney beans, with chickpeas making the fourth bean, is the base for the salad. The beans, along with jarred roasted peppers, canned artichoke hearts, mozzarella cheese and strips of salami, make a great-tasting Italian-inspired meal.

For the simple dressing, add olive oil, fresh garlic and herbs to some of the reserved liquid from the bean salad, then toss with the pasta and bean mixture. Serve it at room temperature or chilled – this dish is

A New Take on a Side Favorite

Whenever friends and family gather to celebrate warm weather days, potato salad is probably the most popular side dish served. However, the traditional salad made with mayonnaise and eggs that we all know and love is being passed by for lighter versions that include more vegetables, different protein sources and healthier dressings.

Simple sides

The best part is – these salads are easy to make. Cut your Idaho potatoes into 1-inch cubes with the skins still on. Boil in water for about 8-15 minutes, then check for doneness by piercing a cube with a fork or skewer. If it goes through with little resistance, drain the potatoes and return them to the pot. Add your favorite dressing and ingredients while the potatoes are still warm. Warm potatoes more easily absorb all the delicious dressing.

Fix ahead dishes

These decadent dishes are best eaten the day after they’re made. This gives the flavors a chance to intensify and come together. When you’re ready to serve, keep your cold salad the perfect temperature by placing your serving dish in a larger bowl filled with ice.

Treat your family to potato salads they’ve never tasted before. For more recipes for salads and other potato dishes, visit

A Healthy, Fruity and Protein Packed Salad

Blueberries are nature’s perfect little superfood, and now these little blue powerhouses are available in grocery stores throughout the winter months.

Fresh blueberries are natural cancer-fighters. In addition to a healthy dose of cancer-fighting antioxidants, fresh blueberries pack enough vitamins, fiber and phytochemicals to rank them high on the list of superfoods all by themselves. Heart-healthy, they’re also full of vitamin C and fiber, making them the ideal go-to fruit to pack great nutrition into every meal. Supplies of these amazing fruits are plentiful all winter long, courtesy of the growers and exporters of Chile, the southern hemisphere’s largest producer of fresh blueberries.

Recipe for resolutions
So, if your New Year’s resolution is to eat healthier, this recipe for Blueberry, Butternut Squash and Quinoa Salad will help you keep it. Not just one, but two of nature’s superfoods – fresh blueberries and quinoa – team up with butternut squash to create a salad that’s packed with protein, bursting with sweet and tangy flavor and colorful enough to brighten the drab grays of winter.

The protein in this healthful, low-calorie salad comes from quinoa, widely considered a grain but really a type of seed more closely related to spinach and chard. As a significant

A Fresh, Savory Side

Sometimes the most memorable, flavorful dishes are those that start with a few ingredients you already have on hand.

For home chefs and foodies alike, it is easy to create flavorful meals in a flash with a well-stocked pantry, including tried-and-true staples like extra virgin olive oil, red wine vinegar and an array of seasonings. With these kitchen essentials, you can create a delicious side dish to complement any entrée – from fish, beef to chicken – or even vegetarian options.  Stocking up at your local Safeway with these pantry essentials will ensure you’re ready for delicious meals with your friends and family.

Add new flavors to meals

Did you know that different types of olive oils should be used to complement specific types of recipes? The Pompeian Varietals Collection, a premium line of mono-varietal extra virgin olive oils celebrating the unique taste profiles of single olive varieties, allow you to find the perfect, complementary oil and flavor profile for all of your dishes, from delicate seafood to juicy red meats. Varieties include:

  • Arbequina: A mild-bodied extra virgin olive oil with a round taste of mature fruitiness and a delicate sweetness of almonds, ideal for fish and vegetables.
  • Koroneiki: A full-bodied extra virgin olive oil

A Celebration of Sides: Barbeque Bests

When you’re loading up the family for a big barbeque celebration, be sure to load up a variety of freshly-made salads and deliciously decadent brownies.

Whether pasta salads, potato salads or even those leafy greens, this side favorite is a perfect accompaniment to juicy grilled burgers, brats and steaks. Because this savory barbeque fare can bring out anyone’s sweet tooth, don’t forget to dish out the desserts. Adding your favorite nuts, fruit and candy toppings to a rich, gooey brownie can melt the hearts of guests as easily as the hot summer sun.

The best part about bringing a salad or brownie dessert – besides both being flavorful barbeque staples – most can be prepared the night before. This gives you more time to focus on the important things, like grilling your next culinary masterpiece and hanging out with your family.

For more tips on what to bring to your next barbeque, visit and

Brownie ‘n Berries Dessert Pizza

  • 1 box (1 lb. 2.4 oz.) Betty Crocker® Original Supreme Premium brownie mix
  • Water, vegetable oil and egg called for on

5 Tips for Easy Family Weeknight Meals

Most families aspire to spend more time together around the dinner table, but between work and after-school activities, it’s hard to find the time.

If you’re finding it tough to get your family to the table each night, here are a few simple tips:

  • Keep the meals simple by choosing recipes with one star ingredient and easy preparation – like a pork tenderloin. Fresh pork cuts can be easily sliced into medallions or cubes to cook faster, while still maintaining juicy, delicious flavor, so you can have a dinner that’s ready in less than 10 minutes.
  • While waiting for dinner to finish cooking, slice and chop any ingredients that can be stored to cut down on some of the prep work for the next night’s meal.
  • Get the whole family involved and assign each member a task, such as setting the table or assembling a crisp green salad.
  • To save on time, choose meats that have done some of the work for you, such as Smithfield’s Seasoned Pork line. Slow-marinated in a variety of delicious seasonings, they’re perfect for any night of the week, and will taste like you spent hours in the kitchen.
  • On weekends, take the extra time in the kitchen to double a

Grape Goodness

Crisp, juicy and sweet, grapes are a real crowd-pleaser. Even better, all three colors of grapes – red, green and black – are good for you.

Grapes are a natural source of beneficial antioxidants and other polyphenols. Current research suggests that grapes may help maintain a healthy heart, and may also help to defend your cells against a number of age-related illnesses. Scientists are also working to uncover more links between grapes and eye health, brain health, joint health, and more. At just 90 calories per 3/4 cup serving, grapes are a sensible, delicious snack with no fat or cholesterol.

People love to eat grapes fresh for a refreshing snack, but grapes also add sweet, juicy, crunch and color to salads, entrees and desserts. Here are six fun, flavorful ways to enjoy California grapes:

Layer –
California grapes are juicy, nutritious and beautiful in breakfast parfaits.

Grill – Oh yes! You can thread them on a skewer with other fruits, like pineapple and mango, vegetables, fish, meat and poultry. Grapes can handle the heat, not only from the coals, but also from a spicy marinade or rub.

Roast – Just like when you roast vegetables, grapes also caramelize, yielding a flavor that

Gather Around the Grill with Family, Friends

Nothing brings family and friends together like great food. Take time to gather everyone around the grill, share some fun and make memories this summer.

One person who knows a lot about feeding a crowd is TV personality and celebrity chef Aaron McCargo, Jr., a winner of The Next Food Network Star and host of the Food Network’s Big Daddy’s House. Growing up with five siblings and raising three children of his own has taught McCargo about the importance of gathering people together for mealtime.

“Making meals for family and friends is easy, especially when there’s a grill involved,” McCargo said, “and grilling season is the perfect time to catch up over ketchup.”

McCargo has teamed up with grilling staple, Heinz Ketchup, to develop tips and recipes for the ultimate cookout, including:

  • Grill summer fruit such as mango, watermelon and pineapple, with a little salt, pepper and oil. Once off the grill, drizzle with fresh citrus juices, such as lemon or blood orange with a little extra virgin olive oil as an untraditional alternative to fruit salad.
  • For an added kick to kebabs, hamburgers or hot dogs, add a fresh new twist on a classic favorite with Heinz Ketchup Blended with Real Jalapeno or Heinz

Fuel Up for Fitness

Sports nutrition isn’t just the domain of professional athletes — for a good workout and quick recovery, everyday athletes need the right diet, too.

“A good workout is draining and can lead to fatigue and sore muscles,” said Michele Macedonio, R.D., C.S.S.D., L.D. a veteran sports nutritionist and team dietitian for the Cincinnati Reds. “The right combination of foods helps restore energy and nutrients used during exercise, and prepares your body for the next workout.”

Dishes such as these from CanolaInfo provide complex carbohydrates, fiber and protein with nutrition-packed ingredients including whole grains, beans, nuts, fruits and plenty of vegetables.

Each delicious recipe contains less than 300 calories per serving and is prepared with heart-smart canola oil to supply healthy unsaturated fats, including monounsaturated and omega-3 fats. For more great recipes, visit

Know the Score

  • Make friends with fat: Fat is an important energy source for athletes, but it’s important to choose healthy fats. Canola oil, for example, provides a valuable source of unsaturated fats, including monounsaturated and omega-3 fats.
  • Pump up protein: Maximize muscle growth with a snack that contains carbohydrates plus 10 to 20 grams of protein consumed within 15 to 30 minutes after a workout, when muscle is most receptive to growing.
  • Don’t