Displaying articles for: March 2012
If you’ve been buying eggs in preparation for Easter like me, you may be wondering what all the different terms used on egg cartons mean. This information should help unscramble any confusion!
Cage-Free Eggs are laid by hens who may roam in a barn or poultry house and have unlimited access to food and water.
Free-Range Eggs come from hens raised in an environment similar to cage-free eggs, but the hens have access to outdoor runs, too.
Omega-3 Enhanced Eggs are produced by hens fed a diet containing fish oil or flax seed. These eggs contain more omega-3s compared to regular eggs (from 100 to 600 mg per egg versus 30 mg). In addition to omega-3s, some egg companies may add other nutrients to hen feed to produce eggs that are higher in vitamin D, vitamin B12, vitamin E and lutein (a type of antioxidant that is thought to help prevent macular degeneration, a leading cause of age-related blindness).
Organic Eggs are laid by hens fed organic grain, which doesn’t contain conventional pesticides, fertilizers, growth hormones and antibiotics. You’ll love the low price on our O Organics Brown Eggs.
Brown Eggs are equally as nutritious as white shell eggs. Eggshell color depends only on the breed of the hen.
Egg Substitute is made from egg whites with beta carotene (a form of vitamin A) added for a yellow color. Egg substitute has about half the calories of shell eggs and since it’s made from egg whites and doesn’t contain yolk, it has no fat and no cholesterol.
Click here to learn the good news about egg nutrition. Whichever type of eggs you buy, how are you serving them for the holiday?
More baking this month! This time driven by some over-ripe bananas that I had no intention of throwing out. I decided to venture into one of my other cookbooks to try a recipe from Mark Bittman. He had a new twist, coconut, which I thought sounded delicious. And it was; talk about amazing! With some chocolate chips tossed in as well, this bread is to die for.
Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees and grease a large loaf pan.
Mix together in a large bowl:
1 ½ cups all purpose flour
½ cup whole wheat flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 ½ teaspoon baking powder
¾ cup sugar
In a separate bowl:
Cream 1 stick butter
Beat in 2 eggs
3 very ripe mashed bananas.
Add this to the dry ingredients and then gently stir in:
1 teaspoon vanilla
½ cup shredded coconut
½ cup chocolate chips (the chocolate may or may not be optional depending on your household).
Pour batter into the loaf pan and bake 45-60 minutes until browned and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Because of the bananas this bread stays moister than most so don’t overcook.
Cool, remove from pan, slice and serve!
Spring is here!! And with that comes my favorite holiday of the year, Easter!! Easter is two weeks earlier this year, April 8th, so now is the time to enjoy all of the really fun spring/Easter items that you can only see at this time of year. I would love to know your favorite part of Easter. Is it the spring bulb flowers, eating the chocolate bunnies, or the peeps? For me, I love all of the spring flowers that come in all of those beautiful colors ... blue, lime green, pink, lavender, and yellow. Your Safeway Floral Department also has pretty cute Easter home décor that will go perfect with your Easter celebration. For statuary, we have bunnies and chicks! Betty & Benjamin Bunny are these mischievous resin brother & sister bunnies that just can’t wait to enjoy the sunshine of spring.
The Chelsea chicks are these adorable little resin chicks that look in very cute in there trendy knit sweater!!
With all of these Easter decorations to choose from, let me know which decorations you bring home to add to your home decor. Happy Easter!
This delicious shrimp dish is a perfect way to kick off springtime! With spicy shrimp and sweet pineapple, your taste buds will surely appreciate this dish!
Blackened Shrimp Pineapple Salad Recipe
8 large shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 DEL MONTE GOLD® EXTRA SWEET PINEAPPLE cut in chunks
½ Del Monte® red pepper, cut in thin slices
¼ cup corn
1 tbsp. unsalted butter
2 tsp. blackening seasoning
2 cups romaine lettuce
Salt and pepper
Choice of dressing
Rub and coat shrimp with blackening seasoning. In a pan, heat butter and sauté shrimp. Cook about 7 minutes on each side. Remove from heat and set on a paper towel covered plate to cool. In a bowl, combine the remaining ingredients and top with shrimp.
March 20th marked the official first day of spring… and boy, oh boy, I have spring fever.
Want to bring spring into your home with the freshest colors of the season? Well, look no further. Light, bright, tablescape inspiration is in order. Winter has passed – and spring is joyful.
Here are some designer tips and tricks to recreate this look in your home –
1. Limit your color palette to three seasonal colors. For this tablescape design, I incorporated seasonal florals in light pink with glass and ivory containers and added a pop of green in the details.
2. One of my favorite design tricks is to repurpose elements in your home, pulled right out of the kitchen pantry. For this spring design, I combined new items in my collection, like the debi lilly design™ Waterlilly Candleholder with the original Illusion Collection glass vases. But this time, instead of creating a colorful floral arrangement, I filled the vase with moss and potted ivy, finished with a band of raffia.
3. Another way to instantly add color to your table is to add in the lovely layered details. I like to run festive wrapping paper under each place setting. This fun pattern brings in texture, color and detail to set the mood, no matter what the occasion this spring.
Your guests will instantly feel the energy this season exudes and you won’t believe how simple it is to pull together this inspired look.
Find our debililly design™ collection of floral arrangements, bouquets, contemporary scented candles, home décor and other gift items in the Floral department.
This is a great fruit platter to have out a party or to bring to the hostess!
Strawberry Fruit Salad
1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger
2 tablespoons honey
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon mild vinegar such as rice or cider vinegar
1 tablespoon almond oil or walnut oil
Kosher salt to taste
1/2 small cantaloupe, peeled and seeds removed
1 pint strawberries, washed and stemmed
1 navel orange, peeled with all white pith removed
4 kiwifruit, peeled and cut into thin rounds
Small head of radicchio for lining a platter
2 tablespoons toasted, sliced almonds
1. Combine ginger, honey, lemon juice, vinegar, oil, and salt in a small bowl. Set aside.
2. With cut side of cantaloupe down on a work surface, cut into very thin slices crosswise. Then cut slices in half crosswise. Halve strawberries lengthwise. Cut oranges into thin slices.
3. Put radicchio on a platter, flattening it out to make as even a surface as possible. Arrange fruit in concentric rings around the platter; first the cantaloupe on the outside, then half the strawberries inside that. Then arrange kiwi, remaining strawberries, and orange slices in the center.
4. Stir up dressing again and pour over fruit. Sprinkle with almonds.
We “celebrated” the retirement of a co-worker a few weeks ago – we were all very happy for her as she enters this new life stage but also a bit sad because she was a great friend and co-worker. We had a small send off party and wanted a cake that was fitting to celebrate the occasion. She & her husband are motorcycle enthusiasts so we thought something with a Harley would be appropriate as they now will have the time to share many adventures on their bike. My first stop for cakes is always Safeway – many choices in flavors, good quality, and they have some really creative designs to choose from. I was not disappointed on my visit - there, right in the “cake book”, was a Harley themed cake! We added the retirement candles and it was perfect!
According to MoreMatters, a national campaign encouraging people to eat more fruits and vegetables, just 6 percent of Americans eat their recommended veggies each day! A survey among moms may reveal one reason for this dire statistic: they reported that the main barrier to their family eating more veggies is the need for new preparation ideas.
If you’re stuck in the same old rut, check out these ways to add veggie variety to meals. And look for great deals on produce picks in our weekly ad – that’s on top of our everyday low prices!
Bake a Potato: Top with steamed broccoli and sprinkle of low-fat cheddar cheese. Or top with a spoonful of fat-free cottage cheese and a dash of chives.
Grill Corn on the Cob: Shuck corn and spray cob with cooking spray. Roll corn in a mix of seasonings like oregano, pepper, onion and chili powders and salt. Wrap individual cobs in foil and grill until tender.
Stir-Fry Green Beans: Heat wok over high heat and drizzle with peanut oil. Add a tablespoon of chopped garlic and one onion, thinly sliced. Add a pound of green beans and stir. If pan appears dry, add a sprinkle of water. Cover wok and cook about 5 minutes. Uncover wok, add a splash of oyster sauce and stir fry for a few more minutes; serve immediately.
Sauté Swiss Chard: Add a few handfuls of Swiss chard to a hot skillet and stir until it wilts. Drizzle with olive oil; add a sprinkle of currants and season with salt and pepper.
What’s your favorite way to enjoy veggies?
Hard to believe that spring is here already! For me, spring is also the beginning of “half marathon season” and knowing that helps me stay on track with my weekly runs post-holidays. March seems to be the official kick off with at least one local race to choose from each month – I love it! Oakland on Sunday will be the first of the year for me – scenic and well supported and we always seem to run into people we know there which make it even more fun. Does your exercise routine change in the spring?
Like many American families, ours is a hybrid of different ethnic backgrounds: Mexican, Irish, French and English. When my son Tim was little, we decided to celebrate our various family heritages by making special dinners on holidays throughout the year. St. Patrick’s Day belongs to me, and I always make colcannon, a traditional Irish side dish made of mashed potatoes and cabbage. It’s delicious served with beef or lamb stew.
2 ½ pounds Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces
6 cups green cabbage, thinly sliced
1 cup Lucerne® low-fat milk, heated
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into small pieces and softened
Salt and pepper to taste
Place potatoes in a large saucepan and cover them with water. Cover pan and simmer about 15 minutes, until potatoes are tender. While potatoes are cooking, steam cabbage for about 5 minutes, or until tender. Drain potatoes; place potatoes in a bowl and mash, stirring in milk and butter. Mix in cabbage and season with salt and pepper. Serve immediately.
Makes 8 servings. Per serving: Calories: 190; Fat: 5 g (Saturated Fat: 3 g); Protein: 4g; Carbohydrates: 33 g; Fiber: 4 g; Sodium: 370 mg.
Do you have a special St Patrick’s Day dish?
One of Max’s favorite cookies is the lemon bar and our family’s favorite recipe is from the Joy of Cooking because it uses a lot of lemon juice making for a very tart bar.
Here it is:
Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
Using a pastry blender or two knives, cut 12 tablespoons of butter into 1½ cups flour and ¼ cup powdered sugar until the mixture is the size of small peas.
Press the mixture into the bottom of a 13 x 9 pan and ¾ inch of the sides to avoid leaking during baking.
Bake until golden brown, 20-30 minutes, remove and cool slightly. Reduce oven temperature to 300 degrees.
Whisk together 6 large eggs and 3 cups sugar then stir in the grated zest of one lemon and 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons of fresh lemon juice.
Sift ½ cup flour over the top and stir until well blended.
Pour into crust and bake until set – 35-50 minutes depending on your oven.
Cool the pan completely on a rack before cutting into bars, then dust with powdered sugar.
I was very excited when just over a year ago Safeway launched the Open Nature brand and introduced several items in the meat department. The term Natural is used on many products these days, but once you start reading ingredients you realize they shouldn’t really be labeled as Natural. At Safeway, the Open Nature brand has an extremely strict set of guidelines making sure our items are in fact 100% Natural and raised without antibiotics, have no added hormones, fed an all vegetarian diet and contain no artificial preservatives.
Listed below are some of our current item offerings which offer a nice alternative for our customers which are looking for high quality yet affordable natural options for their families:
Fresh Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts
Fresh Beef (available in select stores)
And the list just keeps growing. We recently introduced several new items including two flavors of meatballs and two pork dinner sausages. Great for entertaining – it’s March Madness time and these will surely be a hit with your guests. Pair the meatballs with our Open Nature pasta for a quick and easy dinner. The sausage is delicious in our Open Nature buns. With Easter right around the corner make sure to pick up our Open Nature Leg of Lamb. All Open Nature meat items are available in your local Safeway’s meat department. Keep your eyes open for more new items coming soon to a store near you.
This is a great appetizer for a St. Patrick’s Day Feast!
Stuffed Red Potatoes
6 small red potatoes
1/2 cup chopped fresh shiitake mushrooms
2 teaspoons butter
1 tablespoon dry white wine
1 cup chopped cooked chicken breast
1/4 cup each marinated sun-dried tomatoes and shredded Swiss cheese
2 tablespoons chopped green onion
1/2 teaspoon each dried crushed thyme leaves and salt
1/4 teaspoon ground pepper
1. Boil potatoes until tender. Cut in half. If necessary, cut bottom so potato will stay upright. Scoop out fleshy part of potatoes; reserve 1/2 cup. Leave 1/4 to 1/2 inch along edges and on the bottom.
2. Sauté mushrooms in butter; stir in wine. Add chicken, reserved potatoes, sun-dried tomatoes, Swiss cheese, green onion, and seasonings; mix well.
3. Spoon chicken mixture into hollow of potatoes. Bake at 375ºF for 12 to 15 minutes or until thoroughly heated.
Recipe courtesy of www.potatoes.com
Erin go Bragh! Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day this March 17th with some unique cheese made only in Ireland. Cahill’s Porter is beautiful to the eye and the palate. Its striking and bold marbled appearance will liven up your party spread and spark some conversations. It is made of aged Irish Cheddar and Porter ale. The porter is poured over the white cheddar curds as the cheese blocks set, filling in all the nooks and crannies. The result is a chocolate brown and cream color cheese that is rich and savory. Made in the same family tradition for centuries, this cheese pairs wonderfully with grainy mustard, rye bread and dry cured meats. Now what St. Patrick’s Day would be complete without a good beer and some whiskey? Well we have one up on this with Kerrygold Aged Irish Cheddar with pure Irish Whisky and Kerrygold Dubliner with Irish Stout. Both cheeses are distinctly special. The whisky cheddar is rich, creamy and decadent and pairs well with crisp apples. The Dubliner with stout is mature in taste, crumbly in texture and tastes delicious with dried apricots or fig paste. Don’t miss your opportunity to try both cheeses as these are available for a limited time only.
It’s not your imagination: the sizes of the foods we eat have been steadily growing. Just 20 years ago, a small order of fast food fries was standard with a burger, adding about 210 calories. Now, fries are supersized, adding upwards of 610 calories. If you eat a 2,000 calorie diet, that’s more than a quarter of your total calories allotted for the entire day!
Keeping portion sizes in check is one of the most important tools you have to manage weight. Research shows that people unintentionally eat more calories when bigger portions are placed in front of them. And when you eat bigger portions, you take in more calories - sometimes many more than you’d expect - which, over time, can lead to weight gain. Here are a few tips to avoid common pitfalls and avoid oversized portions:
At home, plate out dinner at the stove, instead of putting food in serving dishes on the table. And skip extra helpings.
Learn visual cues that clue you into appropriate portion sizes. For example, 1 cup of cereal is the size of a baseball and a 3-ounce serving of meat is the size of a deck of cards.
Measure or weigh the amount of foods you typically eat, then compare it to the serving size listed on the package label. Chances are, you’re eating more than you think. Look for our SimpleNutrition “Calorie Smart” tags on items like cookies and chips to help you find treats with 100 calories or less per serving.
As the new USDA MyPlate recommends, enjoy your food - just eat less!
Weeknights are tough - we don’t get home until nearly 6pm and then it’s a mad dash to put dinner on the table and get the girls started on their homework before they go to bed around 8pm. I’ve come to rely on the Signature Café rotisserie chicken as a weeknight staple that I can pick up over the weekend and have on hand. Paired with a vegetable or two and a small side of pasta, it’s a family favorite. Whatever we don’t eat for dinner usually gets made into chicken salad for our lunches. What are your favorite “go to” weeknight dinners?
When March rolls around every year, I always think of March 17th and St. Patrick’s Day. I can’t think about St. Patrick’s Day without thoughts of great potato, cabbage and corned beef dishes popping into my brain. This St. Paddy's Day, put on your green apron, cook up some yummy corned beef and add these delicious stuffed cabbage rolls on the side for a great “green” St. Patrick’s Day feast!
Stuffed Cabbage with Couscous
Cabbage leaves are logical candidates for stuffing. Try other grains as well, like basmati rice.
½ cup raisins
1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 large onion, thinly sliced
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
4 cups instant couscous, cooked according to package directions
1 cup canned chickpeas, rinsed and drained
1/3 cup coarsely chopped toasted walnuts
1 teaspoon ground ginger
Freshly ground black pepper to taste
12 large cabbage leaves
2 cups defatted chicken stock
2 tablespoons chopped fresh mint or parsley
Soak raisins in warm water for 30 minutes. Heat butter and oil in a skillet and cook onion over medium heat, stirring, until lightly browned, 5 to 7 minutes. Add salt to taste and cinnamon; stir and cook a few minutes more. Put in a mixing bowl.
Add couscous, chickpeas, walnuts, ginger, and drained raisins to onion mixture. Season with salt and pepper; set aside and preheat oven to 350°F.
Drop cabbage leaves, 4 at a time, in a few quarts of boiling water and cook until just tender, about 3 to 4 minutes. Drain and pat dry. Lay cabbage leaves flat on a work surface and put 1/2 cup of filling into the center of each one. Roll halfway, fold in sides so that stuffing can't fall out, and continue to roll each filled leaf.
Put stuffed rolls, seam side down, in a shallow baking dish. Add chicken stock, cover tightly, and bake about 40 minutes. Cool about 10 minutes and sprinkle with mint.
National Nutrition Month kicked off yesterday and this year’s theme is “Get Your Plate in Shape.” If you want to eat healthier but aren’t sure how, check out MyPlate. I think of MyPlate as providing a blueprint for what and how much to eat throughout the day.
This month, make it a priority to get your plate in shape:
Fill half your plate with fruits and vegetables. Include fruits and vegetables at meals and snacks. Vary choices and try new fruit or veggie-based recipes. And don’t forget to check our weekly circular for fresh fruits and vegetables on sale. Another money saving tip: consider canned and frozen options. They’re as nutritious as fresh and the perfect pick when favorite fresh varieties are out of season.
Make at least half your grains whole grains. Eat more whole grains by substituting them for refined ones: try brown rice instead of white rice, or whole-wheat bread instead of white bread. Our green SimpleNutrition Made with Whole Grain tags can help you easily find these options.
Go lean with protein. Select lean cuts of beef, chicken and pork, trim excess fat and skin, and use prepare them using low-fat cooking methods. Vary your protein choices. Include seafood at least twice a week and beans, peas or soy foods as a main dish often.
Include fat-free or low-fat milk and milk products. Drink a glass of Lucerne® fat-free or low-fat milk with meals, eat Open Nature non-fat Greek yogurt for a snack, or add a sprinkle of low-fat cheese to veggies, casseroles or main dishes.
What changes can you make to get your plate in shape?
Did you know that last month we announced that our Safeway brand of canned tuna will be responsibly caught? Greenpeace acknowledged that the new specifications are “progressive, comprehensive, and visionary”, applauding Safeway for making this public commitment! Now you can have peace of mind knowing that you’re getting superior quality tuna from a source that is more sustainable and eco-friendly – that’s great news!