DWEH REFRIGERATOR AND PANTRY MAKEOVER
Posted in DWEH, Kitchen Tips, Trending on August 2017
Posted in DWEH, Kitchen Tips, Trending
Mac & cheese, crackers, potato chips, cookies…If all you see in your refrigerator and pantry are boxed and canned foods, it might be time for a refrigerator and pantry makeover.
Lifestyle and entertaining expert Mindy Kobrin calls her food philosophy Don’t Worry, Eat Happy – and it all starts with making the most trafficked room in your home colorful, organized and bountiful. She teaches students and families across America how to shop smart, cook with joyful ease and celebrate food seasonally.
Her top refrigerator and pantry makeover tips:
- As a family, create a colorful seasonal produce chart to hang in the pantry or on the fridge. It’s a great reminder of what’s super delish at any given time of the year.
- Make sure your refrigerator has plenty of color. With the seasonal produce chart, you’ll know when it’s best to buy apples, Brussels sprouts, blueberries and peas. Also, keep this tip in mind: your refrigerator should resemble the perimeter of the supermarket, which is usually where all the fresh foods—fish, meat, fruits, vegetables—are located. *Recipes below for a Mood-Boosting Tropical Smoothie, Family Style Tuscan Chicken, Superfood Salad, Sassy & Spicy Fruit Salad and Homemade Granola.
- Less boxes more bulk. Forget the instant oatmeal, breakfast bars, crackers and chips and go for things you can buy or make in bulk like nuts, popcorn kernels, homemade granola, turkey jerky, dried apricots, chocolate chips and quinoa.
- Keep reusable produce bags or stainless steel containers within your pantry for easy grab and go options for the kids. To make sure you’re not going overboard with the nuts and dried fruits, keep some measuring scoops to rest assured you’re staying within a healthy calorie limit.
- Keep bulk products in glass containers so that everyone can see what’s available to nosh on. Remember, we often eat with our eyes. Affix color-coded labels to easily identify proteins, carbohydrates and low sugar snacks.
- Reconsider the oils you use to cook. Swap out vegetable oil and shortening and consider healthier options like safflower, coconut, grape seed, avocado oil and Extra Virgin olive oil.
- Know what canned and boxed foods are ok. Canned beans, whole wheat pasta, tuna fish – are all perfect pantry staples for easy lunch and dinner options.
- Thaw and eat in more ways than one. Frozen berries and edamame are true lifesavers! Grab a bunch of berries for a quick breakfast smoothie or thaw some edamame for a healthy afternoon snack.
- Consider growing your own greens. While this delectable bowl might sit outside of your pantry near a bright sunny window, growing your own leafy greens is both delicious and fun. You’ll always have a veggie in the house, and it’s so much cheaper than the salad in a bag you buy at your neighborhood grocer. If you’ve got the green thumb, take it a step further; plant your own herbs like rosemary, chives, flat leaf parsley and cilantro. Besides being able to season your food, herbs also offer a variety of health benefits.
- Save $$. Stock up on frozen fruits and organic veggies whenever you can. They are nutrient-rich and will keep your family fed well on a budget. Always keep frozen spinach on hand. It’s great to add in smoothies!
- Know your meats. Keep lean meats on hand like ground turkey, a great substitute for family-friendly meals like chili, tacos, burgers and Bolognese sauce.
MOOD BOOSTING TROPICAL FRUIT SMOOTHIE
- 1 cup diced pineapple
- 1/4 cup diced mango
- 1/4 cup diced papaya
- 1/4 cup peeled and diced kiwi
- 1/2 cup fresh orange juice, divided use
- 1/4 cup coconut milk, I prefer So Delicious
- 1/4 cup plain nonfat yogurt, optional
- 1/3 cup ice
- 1 Tbs sugar, or as needed
- 1/4 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 pineapple slices for garnish
- Toasted shredded unsweetened coconut for garnish, optional
- In a blender, combine pineapple, mango, papaya, kiwi, and 1/4 cup orange juice. Purée until smooth.
- With the machine running, add the remaining orange juice, coconut milk, yogurt, ice, sugar, and vanilla extract. Blend the fruit mixture until smooth and thick.
- Serve the smoothies at once in chilled tall glasses garnished with a pineapple slice and a sprinkled of toasted coconut. Makes 2.
- Toasted Coconut: In a dry sauté pan over medium-high heat, gently toss grated coconut for 2 minutes, or until golden brown. Immediately remove from hot pan and pour the toasted coconut into a cool bowl before serving.
FAMILY STYLE TUSCAN CHICKEN
Prepared in 25 minutes or less plus overnight refrigeration and 1 hour to bake.
- 8 skinless boneless chicken breasts
- 1 cup golden raisins
- 1/2 cup green olives
- 5 bay leaves
- 1 head of garlic, finely chopped
- 2 scallions thinly sliced
- 1/4 cup oregano finely chopped
- 1/4 cup fresh parsley finely chopped
- 1/4 cup fresh cilantro finely chopped
- 1/2cup red wine vinegar
- 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 1/4 cup capers and juice
- 1 cup light brown sugar
- 1 cup good white wine
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Combine chicken, garlic, oregano, salt and pepper, vinegar, olive oil, raisins, capers (and juice) and bay leaves into a Ziploc baggy.
- Place in refrigerator and marinate overnight.
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- Place chicken into shallow baking pans and spoon generous amounts of marinade on top of each piece of chicken.
- Sprinkle brown sugar and white wine around the chicken pieces.
- Bake for one hour basting every 10 minutes with pan juices. Remove cooked chicken onto serving platter and sprinkle fresh chopped herbs generously on top.
- Serve immediately with extra gravy sauce from pans. Serves 8.
- 2 cups kale, spinach, Rainbow Swiss chard or radicchio
- 2 cups Napa cabbage
- 2 cups Brussels sprouts, shredded
- 6 radishes, thinly sliced
- 1 red onion, thinly sliced
- 3 Tbs seeds or nuts of choice (I like toasted sunflower seeds)
- I small container grape tomatoes, halved
- 1 cup fresh blueberries, rinsed and patted dry
- Chop up Superfood greens such as kale, Napa cabbage, and Brussels sprouts.
- Gently toss greens together in a large bowl.
- Place the greens in a “date made” labeled Ziploc bags. Squeeze out excess air then seal.
- When ready to serve, add-on remaining ingredients. Use simple lemon vinaigrette.
SASSY AND SPICY FRUIT SALAD
- 6 cups diced fresh cantaloupes 1/4-inch pieces
- 6 cups diced fresh pineapple 1/4-inch pieces
- 6 cups peeled and seeded cucumbers 1/4-inch pieces, approximately 3 cucumbers
- 16 grape or cherry tomatoes, halved lengthwise
- 4 diced celery sticks, 1/4-inch pieces
- 2/3 cup red onion, thinly sliced
- 1 1/2 Tbs finely minced garlic
- 3 tsp finely minced red chile pepper or jalapeno, seeds removed
- 4 tsp grated lime zest
- 1/3 cup fresh lime juice, approximately 3 limes
- 2/3 cup fresh mint leaves for garnish
- Combine the cantaloupe, pineapple, cucumbers, tomatoes, celery and red onion in a large bowl.
- Gently fold in the prepared garlic, chile, lime zest and lime juice. Toss gently and cover with plastic wrap before refrigerating for a few hours.
- Remove from refrigerate and garnish salad with mint leaves before serving at room temperature. Serves 6.
WALNUT GINGER GRANOLA
- 4 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
- 1-1/2 cups raw walnuts, chopped (can substitute with fresh pecans or almonds)
- 1 tsp ground ginger powder
- 1/4 tsp Sea salt
- 1/4 cup Sunflower, Safflower or Canola oil
- 1/2 cup agave nectar or maple syrup
- 2 egg whites, whipped until light and frothy
- 1 cup crystallized ginger, finely chopped
- Preheat oven to 325°F.
- Combine oats, chopped nuts, ground ginger and Sea salt in a large bowl. Toss well with hands or silicone spatula until ingredients are mixed. Pour oil into the bowl. Pour agave nectar into the bowl. Mix well with spatula until ingredients are incorporated.
- Add whipped egg whites to bowl and toss mixture to coat.
- Spread granola onto a baking sheet. Bake until golden brown, approximately 30 minutes. Make sure to toss granola every 8-10 minutes during the baking process to evenly cook.
- Remove from oven and sprinkle crystallized ginger over the hot granola. Stir quickly then allow granola to cool completely for several hours.
- Store in clear airtight container for easy and protein-packed snack. (Add other seeds for tasty fun like Pumpkin seeds or Sunflower seeds-both packed with great health!)