Take a look at the Safeway Chef Assistant App, introduced last year to offer help for holiday dinners – recipes, meal planning, timers, and how-to videos for the Safeway 2 Hour Turkey recipe (my go to every year) and carving! This year it’s back with even more – great values, wine savings ideas, baking recipes & tools, and more.
But one of my favorite new features is a virtual cupcake decorator where you can frost, decorate, and share your creations! Some of you may remember the gingerbread man decorating game a few years back – Gabby loved that and she had fun sharing her virtual cookies with her Nana in Chicago. Now that the twins are older I know they’re going to love the cupcake decorator just as much – perfect way to entertain the girls while we’re waiting in line, or just decompress after a long day!
Turkey is turkey, right? Not if you shop at Safeway, it isn’t!
At Safeway, we have a variety of turkeys, including one that’s perfect for you and your family. Before you head off to pick out that perfect bird for your Thanksgiving meal, get to know a couple of our favorites that are available for you to choose from.
Safeway Select Frozen Turkey
If you’re looking for a turkey that will dazzle friends and family during the holidays, look no further than the Safeway Select Frozen Turkey. This premium turkey is USDA certified grade A, which means you can feel confident its quality is unsurpassed, guaranteeing that it will taste as great as it looks.
Frozen turkeys also allow you to shop, prepare and organize in advance, leaving more time for family. Plus, our Safeway Select turkeys are frozen at its peak of quality - locking in freshness, taste and important nutrients and minerals.
Open Nature All Natural Turkey
The Open Nature All Natural Turkey isn’t only delicious, but something you can feel good about feeding to your family. That’s because it’s 100% natural and free-range birds, which means it has no antibiotics, nitrites or hormones added. All that’s left is a delicious, natural turkey that guarantees you’ll be dishing up a Thanksgiving meal just as nature intended.
We also offer additional turkeys with delicious flavor and features: from smoked, stuffed, Butterball and more, they’re always tender and juicy.
No matter which turkey you prefer for your Thanksgiving celebration, you are sure to find the best value, quality and selection at Safeway.
Following a gluten free diet isn’t easy, and that’s especially true when it comes to baking at home. Gluten–the protein in wheat flour– is important in baked goods because it provides structure to products. In order to make gluten free baked goods, you need to compensate for the lack of gluten. Here are a few tips:
• Gluten free home baking requires patience and practice so don’t be discouraged if baked goods don’t turn out right the first time. Start with recipes that are easier to make, such as pancakes, waffles, cookies and muffins. Once you master these, you can try more challenging recipes for breads and cakes.
• A combination of gluten free flours and starches tend to work better than using single flours to replace wheat flour. Instead of spending the time sifting together your own combo recipe, take a shortcut and use a gluten free all-purpose baking flour in place of wheat flour in recipes.
• Improve the flavor of baked goods by adding one-third to one-half more herbs, spices and other flavorings than you normally would. Adding nuts, fruits like applesauce and bananas, or dried fruits can also boost flavor in recipes.
As you’re shopping for baking ingredients or other gluten free products, look for the SimpleNutrition “gluten free” tag throughout the aisles of our stores. Our tag helps you easily hone in on the gluten free ingredients you need to make your baked goods the best ever!
What are your tips for gluten free baking?
September is National Cholesterol Education Month, a good time to get your cholesterol checked and to make the lifestyle changes needed to help lower it, if needed.
Having a high blood cholesterol level is one of the major risk factors for heart disease and stroke. One of the main dietary culprits in raising blood cholesterol levels is saturated fat. Much of the saturated fat we eat is found naturally animal foods, like beef and pork, poultry skin, cream, butter, cheese, and whole and reduced fat (2%) milk. But other foods you may not suspect are often high in saturated fat as well. In fact, baked goods, desserts, fried foods and pizza rank among the top sources in the American diet.
Replace foods high in saturated fat with healthier fat alternatives: use liquid vegetable oils like canola or olive oil in place of butter, switch to fat-free milk instead of whole milk and remove the skin from chicken before eating. Another simple way? Look for the Simple Nutrition “Low Saturated Fat” tag in our stores to help you easily find good options. We have lots of other heart smart tips online, too.
If you have high cholesterol, what swaps do you make to limit the amount of saturated fat you eat?
Just in time for Oktoberfest celebrations, Open Nature Chicken Sausages are now better tasting than ever! Flavors include Italian, Sun-Dried Tomato & Provolone, Spinach & Feta, Smoked Andouille, and Roasted Bell Pepper & Garlic. All five flavors are all-natural, contain no nitrates or nitrites and taste great!
Now that you’ve met the Open Nature cast and crew, it’s time to embrace a little German culture and try out our Open Nature Andouille Sausage and Peppers with Double Take Amber Ale.
So put on your lederhosen and get cooking!
Open Nature Andouille Sausage And Peppers with Double Take Amber Ale
3 tablespoons olive oil
8 each Open Nature Andouille Sausage
3 red bell peppers, sliced
2 green bell peppers, sliced
2 large red onions, sliced
3 cloves garlic, chopped
1 Double Take Amber Ale
1/4 cup can tomato paste
2 tablespoons chopped fresh oregano
2 tablespoons hot sauce
Salt and pepper to taste
Heat olive oil in a large heavy skillet over medium high heat.
Add sausage and cook until nicely browned.
Remove the heated sausages from the pan and reserve covered with foli.
Place the red peppers, green peppers, onions and garlic in the pan.
Add tomato paste, oregano, hot sauce, salt and pepper, stir well
Add beer, bring to simmer and cook until ingredients are tender
Add sausages back to pan and heat through.
Serve with sausages with "sauce".
This recipe is sure to make you want to yodel with delight!
No one wants to labor in the kitchen on Labor Day—me included! Given that it’s the last day before summer unofficially ends, I plan to relax as much as possible and savor the last rays of summer sunshine. That means our dinner will be a super simple one: grilled flank steak, corn on the cob, green salad and angel food cake topped with strawberries and a dollop of whipped cream. Easy and delicious!
Did you know that flank steak is a lean cut of beef? A 3-ounce serving—about the size of a deck of cards—contains about 2.5 grams of saturated fat. That’s the same amount found in a 3-ounce serving of a skinless chicken thigh! Beef is also an excellent source of protein and a natural source of nine more essential nutrients, including iron, zinc and B vitamins.
If you avoid beef because of heart health concerns, it’s time to make room for beef on the grill next to that chicken! A study by researchers at The Pennsylvania State University found that substituting lean beef for white meat as part of a heart-healthy diet lowered LDL “bad” cholesterol by 10 percent, and improved other heart disease risk factors across the board. As always, you’ll find great steaks at a great price in our stores. Look for our Ranchers ReserveÒ beef—the most premium, tender beef available anywhere.
Here’s my favorite marinade recipe, good for a 1½ to 2 pound flank steak:
1/3 cup olive oil
1/3 cup soy sauce
¼ cup honey
3 Tablespoons red wine vinegar
2 Tablespoons minced garlic
1 Tablespoon minced ginger
Salt and pepper to taste
Whisk together ingredients in a small bowl. Place steak and marinade in a food-safe plastic bag; turn steak to coat. Seal bag and marinate in refrigerator at least 6 hours and as long as overnight, turning occasionally. When ready to grill, remove steak from bag and discard marinade.
In a rush? Marinate the steak in one of our great Safeway or Safeway SELECT marinades instead.
For more great grilling tips and recipe ideas, check out our Get Out & Grill website.
What’s on your menu for Labor Day?
Good weather, check. A clean grill, check. Open Nature sausage, check. A successful and relaxing Labor Day with family and friends, guaranteed.
With Labor Day quickly approaching, we are all reaching for our wire brushes to clean those grills. Since it became a national holiday in 1894, Labor Day has been a day to enjoy great food with family and friends. And if you’re the one in charge of the grill, the pressure is on to deliver a savory meal that leaves everyone satisfied.
A simple way to garner everyone’s attention is to grill up some Eating Right Chicken Breasts over some fiery charcoal. These are loaded with nutritional protein that is sure to give everyone a little extra energy for some Labor Day activities. Butcher’s Cut Ground Beef Patties are a classic Labor Day option to slap on the grill, offering bold taste and a full belly. Whatever you choose to grill or BBQ make sure you consult the Safeway Chef Assistant App. If you are intimidated by the grill or are new to the arena you can still have a successful Labor Day with the help of this app. It gives tips, recipes, and even tells you when your meat is done cooking so you can create the perfect meal.
This month’s meat blog written by: Michael Bueno, Intern and student at UC Davis
If someone asks you to name your favorite snack, do you say cookies? Chips? Ice cream? If so, it might be time to rethink your snacks.
It’s fine to enjoy these foods—I do! But I think of them as treats, not snacks, to eat in small amounts no more than once a day.
However, for many people, treat foods are their snack of choice. According to MyPlate, about 35% of Americans’ calories come from empty-calorie foods, including foods like cookies and chips. These foods lack nutrients and provide your body with little besides calories. They shouldn’t take up too much space in your diet.
Instead, eat snacks that are nutrition-packed. Fruits and veggies top my snack list, especially because it’s tough to get enough when limited to meals. As always, you’ll find low prices on the season’s bounty in our produce department. Look for our SimpleNutrition tags that point out the unique nutrition benefits of different fruits and veggies.
We’ve been on a turkey sandwich kick lately and my latest twist has been to use Open Nature Pesto sauce (in the refrigerated pasta section) as the sandwich spread instead of mustard or mayo. Open Nature pesto has an amazing flavor, it’s mild, without any bite or bitterness that sometimes comes with pesto and you can see whole pine nuts in the sauce. It elevates the sandwich to an entirely new level – add your favorite cheese (we like Havarti or Colby Jack), substitute a ciabatta roll for your bread if you really want to go all out and you’ve got a café quality sandwich!
Have I mentioned how much I love our exclusive vase collections? Let me count the ways…
Whether you want to fill a vase up with fresh flowers, or design a themed seasonal centerpiece, these vases come in every size for all of your elegant entertaining needs.
The Artisan Bud Vases are my go to for mixing in layers of petite floral arrangements on your tables. A single bunch of cut flowers goes a long way in a collection of these vases, and really adds an interesting, stylist touch to your design.
For a more modern look, I love the Cube Collection vases. In two sizes, these vases help create low-profile centerpieces – perfect for arranging in a linear row down the length of your table for dinner parties.
The gorgeous Illusion Collection vases are high quality, hand-blown glass vases with a beautiful bubble in the base to create the illusion of light reflection. Filled with cut flowers, fresh fruit or a pillar candle, they are perfect on their own or combined in a trio of sizes for a more statement design.
A favorite party planning trick: take a modern approach to serving tasty treats, by placing cookies in a trio of Illusion Vases. This creates a fun, edible centerpiece for all to enjoy.
Find the debi lilly design™ collection in the floral department. Visit www.safeway.com/debililly for more inspiration.
This recipe is so light and fluffy it’s perfect for any summer day! It would make for a great dessert at an outdoor party- guests will be sure to love it! You can find this recipe online at www.safeway.com or in the August issue of Fresh Ideas Magazine in your local Safeway store.
Easy Red Lion Nectarine Mousse
Red Lion nectarines are juicy, tree-ripened nectarines that make for a succulent summer dessert when whipped into a cool mousse. Flavored with cinnamon and vanilla, this dessert is sure to please.
Prep Time: 15 Minutes. Ready In: 15 Minutes. Serves 6.
1 pound Red Lion nectarines
3/4 cup heavy whipping cream
2 tablespoons O Organics®granulated sugar
1/4 teaspoon Safeway vanilla
1/8 teaspoon Safeway cinnamon
Thin nectarine slices for garnish (optional)
6 cinnamon sticks (optional)
1. Cut 1 pound nectarines from pits into a blender or food processor. Whirl until mixture is a smooth purée, scraping container sides as needed. If desired, to remove bits of peel, rub purée through a fine strainer into a bowl.
2. In another bowl, whip cream until it holds soft peaks. Add sugar and vanilla and continue to whip until distinct peaks form. Fold in nectarine purée and cinnamon. Spoon into wine or martini glasses. Garnish, if you like, with nectarine slices and cinnamon sticks.
Recipe courtesy of www.safeway.com.
Most cities and towns across the country have already sweated through many “dog days of summer,” well ahead of their traditional August appearance. Staying hydrated is critical to good health, but particularly so when it’s hot and humid outside.
Even mild dehydration can negatively affect your well-being. Two recent studies found that mild dehydration was associated with headaches, moodiness, greater fatigue and increased tension and anxiety. Imagine how you’d feel if you were more than mildly dehydrated! Click here for a simple way to gauge your hydration status and to learn more about your daily fluid needs. And help keep your cool with these hydration tips:
How do you keep your cool when temperatures rise?
Hot Diggity Dog!!! It's National Hot Dog Day! Every July 23rd, the hot dog is honored with lots of hoopla and fun facts about the wonderful wiener which has managed to capture America's hearts for well over a century and continues to gain popularity.
Although not an official holiday, National Hot Dog Day nevertheless recognizes one of the country's most popular street foods. And why not? This year the day will be especially observed to cheer lunch time crowds headed back to work on Monday, July 23, 2012. So don’t forget to celebrate with lunch and / or dinner! You can feel good about feeding your family Open Nature Uncured Beef Franks available only at Safeway. These Franks have no nitrates or nitrites, no antibiotics, are 100% all natural, and they taste delicious!
The origin of the hot dog: Historians
say the "little sausages" first appeared
in America when 19th century German
immigrants began selling them from
push carts in NYC. The nickname
‘dachshund dogs’ later evolved
into the beloved hot dog.
My family and I are lucky to live in beautiful Washington State, and have easy access to many short and spectacular family-friendly hikes. No matter where you live, getting out in the great outdoors is a fantastic way to spend time with your kids and get some exercise, too! Since all that moving can make you hungry, here are some options for packing a nutritious and portable picnic to enjoy on the mountaintop, on a hillside, in the field or woods, or wherever you like to romp:
Remember the mantra “Leave No Trace”: pack out what you pack in, garbage, peels and all, to keep our parks and trails clean! Where are some of your favorite places to walk or hike and picnic?
Responsible Choice Seafood: Healthy for You and Healthy for the Oceans
Seafood is not only delicious, but also one of the healthiest protein sources available, packed full of goodness that promotes heart health and also children’s growth and development. Now at Safeway, you can select seafood that is not only healthy for you and your family, but healthy for the oceans too.
We have been working on improving the sustainability of our seafood offerings to help ensure the availability of healthy seafood for generations to come. Our ultimate goal is to have all of our fresh and frozen seafood come from responsible sources or be in a credible improvement project by 2015.
Today, much of our seafood is caught or farmed in responsible ways and we are happy to highlight some of our best options via our new ‘Responsible Choice’ labels – look out for them in your local Safeway seafood counter! In the meantime, here are some crowd-pleasing options to get you started:
Since nothing says summer like ice cream, you may be standing in the frozen foods aisle wondering which to choose: frozen yogurt or ice cream? Slow-churned or fat-free? Strawberry or cookie dough? One of the best ways to spot the better-for-you choices is to use our SimpleNutrition tag as a guide–you’ll see it on products that meet our strict requirements. Along with our tags, this “scoop” on America’s favorite frozen treat may help you decide the best lick:
Ice Cream: Its creamy texture and taste also come at a nutritional price: premium ice cream usually contains more fat and therefore, more calories than frozen yogurt. But more nutrition-friendly options are available. Many manufacturers, for example, are using new churning technologies to make products with less fat and calories using the same ingredients found in their regular ice creams. Light ice cream is a good option–it has at least 50% less fat and 1/3 fewer calories compared to regular varieties. Low-fat ice cream is a good choice too, with 3 grams or less of fat per serving; fat-free ice cream has less than 0.5 gram. Be aware that candy, cookies and other mix-ins add calories, so opt for plain or fruit flavors most often. Although mouth feel and flavor may be different, options for those with special dietary needs include “no sugar added” or “sugar free” ice creams, and for vegans, soy or non-dairy ice creams.
Frozen Yogurt: Compared to ice cream, frozen yogurt usually has less fat (since it’s made with milk, not cream) but it sometimes contains more sugar. Look for fat-free and low-fat varieties in plain or fruit flavors and skip the ones with high-calorie mix-ins. Another important fact about frozen yogurt: yogurt and frozen yogurt are not the same. Most frozen yogurts pale in comparison to their refrigerated counterparts in terms of nutrition–frozen yogurt typically contains more calories and fat, less calcium, and little of the digestive-friendly live and active cultures. Happily, there are some exceptions to that rule, such as Open Nature Frozen Greek Yogurt. It contains live and active cultures and has more protein than most regular frozen yogurts. Honey is my favorite flavor–with blueberry a close second!
What’s your favorite frozen treat?
July is National Blueberry Month! Blueberries have been enjoyed for centuries, and rightfully so. These plump little berries were even used for medicinal reasons by Native Americans! Nowadays they serve a different purpose- mostly just to be enjoyed!
When you select a basket of blueberries, make sure they are firm and plump, and don’t have any perspiration because that can lead to decay. They should be a vivid purple-blue to blue-black color (stay away from any green ones because that means they were picked too early). Once you bring them home, blot any moisture away and put them on a plate covered with plastic. They can last like that in the refrigerator up to 10 days! Remember not to wash them until you’re ready to eat them.
Banana Blueberry Maple Crepes
**recipe from safeway.com**
3 medium bananas, peeled and sliced
1 1/2 cups fresh blueberries or O Organics Frozen Wild Blueberries, partially thawed
3 tablespoons O Organics Sweet Cream Butter
1/2 cup sliced almonds
1 cup O Organics 100% Pure Maple Syrup
2 (6 ounce) containers O Organics Nonfat Maple Blended Yogurt
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Set aside a few banana slices and about 1/2 cup fresh or thawed blueberries for garnish.
2. In a large frying pan, melt butter over medium-high heat. Add almonds and stir until slightly darker, 1 to 2 minutes. Remove pan from heat and with a slotted spoon, lift out almonds, draining melted butter into pan, and transfer to a small bowl.
3. Add maple syrup to browned butter in pan. Bring to a rolling boil over high heat, about 2 minutes. Remove from heat. Add remaining bananas and blueberries to syrup and mix gently.
4. Lay crepes on a counter in a single layer with speckled sides up. With a slotted spoon, lift fruit from syrup, drain, and divide fruit evenly among crepes, spooning onto a quarter-section of each. Fold each crepe in half over filling, then fold again to make a triangle. Using a wide spatula, set filled crepes in a single layer on a baking sheet with filling sides up.
5. Bake until crepes are warm, 5 to 7 minutes. Meanwhile, bring the syrup to a boil.
6. With wide spatula, put 3 filled crepes on each plate. Moisten crepes with a little hot syrup. Spoon about 2 tablespoons yogurt onto each portion. Sprinkle crepes with toasted almonds and reserved fruit. Add remaining yogurt and syrup to taste.
Nothing says summer to me like hot dogs and corn cooked on the grill. And now there’s a better quality option with Open Nature. Made with all-natural ingredients from beef raised without antibiotics, these dogs do not have any nitrates, nitrites or artificial preservatives. And they taste amazing too! Give them a try and let me know what you think!
Smoothies rock as a quick breakfast or pick-me-up snack. They’re not only refreshing on a summer day (or any day), they’re loaded with good nutrition, too. And kids love making them–my son has even created a smoothie that he calls the “Tim Special”! I’m not at liberty to share that secret recipe, but here are three of my favorite smoothie combos. Don’t be scared off by the color of the Green Smoothie –I promise it doesn’t taste like spinach. The directions for making these smoothies are the same: simply place ingredients in a blender and give them a whirl!
½ cup strawberries*
½ cup sliced peaches*
½ cup O Organics Blended Lowfat Strawberry Yogurt
½ cup Open Nature Mango Nectar
Makes 1 serving.
*Add some ice cubes during blending if you use fresh fruit instead of frozen.
Per serving: Calories: 220; Fat: 1 g (Saturated Fat: 0.5 g); Protein: 4 g; Carbohydrates: 49 g; Fiber: 3 g; Sodium: 55 mg.
¼ cup Open Nature Lowfat Vanilla Yogurt
½ cup Safeway 100% Apple Juice
½ cup chopped O Organics Baby Spinach
½ medium apple, diced
1 to 2 teaspoons maple syrup or honey
Sprinkle of cinnamon
½ cup ice
Make sure the greens are thoroughly blended before serving. Makes 1 serving.
Per serving: Calories: 230; Fat: 2 g (Saturated Fat: 1 g); Protein: 5 g; Carbohydrates: 50 g; Fiber: 3 g; Sodium: 90 mg.
Blueberry Smoothie Pops
This smoothie recipe is delicious frozen as popsicles, but equally as good as a drink. If you serve it as a beverage, add some ice cubes during blending.
Do you have a favorite smoothie recipe to share?
As the only coffee drinker in my home I was thrilled when a Keurig machine showed up under the Christmas tree. I’d been using the camping method for years – a teakettle to boil the water and a filter lined funnel apparatus to make my coffee - but only on weekends because it took way too long during the week. Now in less than 2 minutes I have a great cup of coffee ready to go. I love the variety of flavors & brands available so I can mix it up every once in a while – even tea and cocoa! It just became more affordable too with the Safeway Select coffee pods – great coffee and so convenient!
This is another great summer recipe. If you happen to grow your own tomatoes, then this is definitely the recipe for you, because the only way to make this even tastier is fresh from the garden tomatoes! Look for tomatoes with maximum red coloring that are plump with smooth skins, and heavy for their size. They should be free of bruises, blemishes, deep cracks, or leathery dark patches. If tomatoes are soft and yielding to the touch, they are fully ripe, so only buy them if you can use them immediately.
Grilled Vine-Ripe Tomatoes with Fresh Herbs
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 teaspoons finely chopped O Organics(TM) Rosemary
4 teaspoons finely chopped O Organics(TM) Thyme
4 teaspoons finely chopped O Organics(TM) Oregano leaves
1/4 cup O Organics(TM) Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1. Prepare a gas or charcoal grill for direct, high heat (you can hold your hand 1 to 2 inches above cooking grate only 2 to 3 seconds; visit Safeway.com for complete instructions).
2. Meanwhile, cut tomatoes in half crosswise and set on a platter; liberally season with salt, pepper and herbs. Drizzle with olive oil.
3. Place tomatoes cut side up on cooking grate; cover gas grill. Cook without turning until hot in center, 5 to 6 minutes. Transfer with a wide spatula to a clean platter.
I don’t think this recipe could be more perfect for a warm, summer day. It will make for a really great dessert, or maybe even a very special breakfast treat. When you’re at the store picking out the apricots steer clear of any fruit that is hard and tinged with green because it won't develop its full flavor. Fully ripe fruit is soft to the touch, full of juice, and should be eaten as soon as possible. Enjoy this yummy, fruity treat!
Grilled Apricots with Toasted Almond Topping
- 1/2 cup sliced almonds
- 2 tablespoons O Organics(TM) Unsalted Sweet Cream Butter, at room temperature
- 1 tablespoon O Organics(TM) Granulated Sugar, plus
- 1/4 cup O Organics(TM) Granulated Sugar
- 1 O Organics(TM) large egg, beaten
- 6 firm-ripe apricots, halved and pitted
- 1 pint of your favorite Lucerne(R) Ice Cream (optional)
1. Prepare a gas or charcoal grill for direct, medium-high heat (you can hold your hand 1 to 2 inches above the cooking grate only 3 to 4 seconds; visit Safeway.com for complete instructions).
2. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spread almonds in a single layer on a baking sheet and bake until lightly browned, 5 to 7 minutes. Pour onto a counter and let cool.
3. In a medium bowl, mix butter with 1 tablespoon sugar until smooth, then add almonds, remaining 1/4 cup sugar, and salt, and stir to combine. Drizzle in 1 tablespoon of the beaten egg and stir to moisten mixture. Discard remaining egg.
4. Arrange 6 of the apricot halves with cut sides up on a sheet of foil placed on a baking sheet. Arrange remaining apricots on a second sheet of foil on a baking sheet. Spoon a generous tbsp. of almond mixture into each half.
5. Transfer apricots (still on foil) to grill. Cover and cook until apricots are slightly softened and almond mixture is puffed and brown, 6 to 8 minutes. With a wide spatula, transfer apricots to a platter. Serve warm, with ice cream, if you like.
*recipe courtesy of safeway.com*
The arrival of warm weather = my favorite time of the year - vacations, the great outdoors and grilling season! I thought I’d share some simple tips for the most successful and easy grilling experiences to enjoy all season on a variety of food choices.
First off, pick your ‘meat’. For you big spenders, filet mignon, T-bone or New York strips are optimal. Skirt or Flank steaks and sirloins are great options too. Chicken is great on the grill – I prefer boneless and skinless breasts, whole (similar sizes) or cut up and skewered with some vegetables (onions, mushrooms, bell peppers, tomatoes, etc). When making kabobs, be sure the pieces are equal in size so they cook evenly.
Now, prepare your meat. Marinades, rubs and sauces are the 3 easiest and tastiest ways to flavor your meat. Be careful not to marinade your meat too long as it can toughen your meat or make it too mushy. Safeway offers some of the best options in rubs and sauces by Rancher’s Reserve and can be found in your meat department. My personal favorite is the Classic Steak Rub; just coat your meat with olive oil, generously apply the rub to all sides, and grill your meat. It’s great on Beef as well as Chicken! For a super finishing touch to your grilled meat, the Smoked Chile & Espresso Steak Sauce will certainly add pizzazz to your meal. Made with California chili peppers, espresso beans and spices, it surely adds some kick. Check out the wide variety of grilling and meat enhancements at a Safeway Meat Department near you!
Find more grilling tips and recipes on site.
One of my favorite salads is panzanella, a Tuscan bread salad that was traditionally a poor man’s dish. Panzanella is a great way to use up stale bread, but if you don’t have any on hand, let your loaf sit out for a day to get stale. Stale bread better absorbs juices from the tomatoes and the dressing–if you use fresh bread, your salad will be mushy.
4 cups stale French or Italian bread (whole-grain, if possible)
4 cups tomatoes
1 yellow bell pepper
1 cucumber, seeded
½ red onion
1 cup fresh basil leaves
½ cup O Organics Olive Oil
3 Tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon dried basil
½ teaspoon minced garlic
Salt and pepper to taste
Cut bread, tomatoes, pepper, cucumber and onion into similar size pieces and place in large salad bowl. Tear basil leaves into small pieces and add to salad. In a separate bowl, whisk together ingredients for dressing. Pour dressing over salad, cover and let it marinate for at least an hour and up to 8 hours at room temperature (do not refrigerate) and serve.
Makes 10 servings. Per serving: Calories: 170; Fat: 12g (Saturated Fat: 1.5g); Protein: 3g; Carbohydrates: 14g; Fiber: 3g; Sodium: 105mg.
I’m bringing this salad to my friend Kristen’s Memorial Day get-together. What are your Memorial Day plans?
I discovered a new snack, well, new for me that is, as it’s been around a while – Signature Café 6 Layer Dip. I decided to give it a try after reading the Tasters Choice review in the San Francisco Chronicle earlier in the year – it beat out the other brands by a long shot. The panelists; chefs, food writer, cookbook author, & a recipe developer thought it “had 'the best flavor' of the bunch, with a 'nice blend of heat,' 'good spices,' and a 'strong chili bean flavor.'" The Signature Café 6 Layer Dip has layers of refried beans, guacamole, garden salsa, creamy salsa, sour cream, and shredded cheddar cheese – goes great with tortilla or corn chips.
Grilling is not just for beef or chicken. Seafood is excellent, healthy and delicious on the grill. And not just shrimp; you can grill scallops, trout, mahi mahi, tilapia, salmon, swordfish, halibut, tuna and on and on, but for now, let’s discuss shrimp because in my opinion, shopping for shrimp can be a bit overwhelming. With so many options at the shelf, let’s look at size first; below is a chart of the various sizes. Extra large (and above) raw shrimp are the ideal choice for grilling, however, smaller shrimp can be placed on skewers for the same great eating experience.
Another consideration is whether to buy raw or cooked shrimp. Buy raw if you plan to grill or use as an ingredient, to avoid overcooking. Cooked shrimp is perfect served immediately as an appetizer or in salads, or cold with cocktail sauce. At Safeway, look for Waterfront Bistro seafood options, for the best quality and selection.
Below are simple tips for grilling shrimp:
- Once your grill is heated, place larger shrimp or skewered smaller shrimp directly on grill, leaving room between each shrimp or skewer.
- Brush the shrimp with olive oil and sprinkle with salt, pepper, and garlic.
- Grill for 3 to 4 minutes or until the shrimp have turned pink, turning the shrimp and/or skewers once halfway through cooking time.
- Remove from the heat & serve
Find more grilling tips and recipes on site.
In case you didn’t already know, we women are special–and that’s true nutritionally-speaking, too! Depending on a woman’s stage of life, her needs for certain nutrients vary. Here are three that deserve special mention.
Iron: Women are especially prone to low iron levels during child-bearing years. Heme iron, the type found in beef, chicken and fish, is better absorbed than iron from plant foods. If you don’t eat much meat, be sure to include iron-rich plant foods –such as beans, spinach and iron-fortified cereals and breads–in your diet. To boost iron absorption, pair those plant foods with sources of vitamin C: top cereal with strawberries, add oranges to spinach salad or simmer beans with diced red pepper.
Folate: Folate (or folic acid) is a B vitamin particularly important for women who may get pregnant. Not getting enough folate increases risk for neural tube defects in babies. Folate is found naturally in foods like spinach, oranges, and beans and lentils. Many grain products, such as bread, cereal, rice and pasta are fortified with folic acid.
Calcium: Calcium is critical for building and maintaining strong bones. Low-fat and fat-free milk, yogurt and cheese are excellent sources of calcium, as are calcium-fortified orange juice and cereal. Look for our SimpleNutrition “Good Source of Calcium” tags to help you scout out options.
You can use the Percent Daily Value (% DV) amounts that are listed on packaged foods to help guide you towards foods that are good sources of these nutrients. A “good source” contains at least 10% DV per serving; an “excellent source” provides at least 20% DV. Your goal is to get 100% of the Daily Value for these (and all) vitamins and minerals throughout the day. It’s important to note that the Daily Value for iron, folate and calcium is based on the needs of those in the 19-50 age range, so if you require more (or less), you need to factor that in.
Are you meeting your needs for these nutrients?
I try to make small, everyday efforts to help take care of the earth: I recycle, take shorter showers to save water and (usually) remember to bring my reusable shopping bags for groceries. Last year for Earth Day, I wrote about easy ways I’ve found to go green in the kitchen. This year, I have three easy ways to eat green:
Shop in season. Although most fresh produce is available nearly year-round, buying fruits and veggies in season is generally when you’ll get the best prices. Along with those low prices, look for our SimpleNutrition tags that highlight the various vitamins, minerals and antioxidants found in fruits and veggies.
Eat it all. Don’t toss the edible peels or stalks on fruits and veggies – eat them! If you peel the skin off veggies and fruits you throw away important vitamins and minerals. You also forgo some fiber. For example, a medium baked potato with the skin on has 5 grams of fiber, but a skinless potato has just 2.5 grams. Eat edible stalks of veggies like broccoli, too: dice them and add to soups and casseroles. As always, thoroughly wash fresh fruits and veggies with clean, running water (but not soap) just before cooking and eating.
Love your leftovers. I have to admit, I’m not a huge fan of leftovers. I get bored eating the same dish night after night. So I make double-duty dinners instead: they’re purposefully made to turn leftovers into completely different meals!
What are your tips for eating green this Earth Day?
Nine finalists have been selected for the Lucerne Art of Dairy Art Contest. These student finalists represent high schools from all over the country. They’ve designed and painted life-size cow sculptures and your vote will help decide who wins the grand prize - $20,000 for their school, and $5,000 each for the student and designated teacher! Cast your vote at your local participating store via mobile phone, online at ArtofDairy.com, or on the Safeway Facebook page.
April is National Soyfoods Month– a perfect time to taste-test the wide array of soy foods available in our stores, if you’re not already a fan!
Soy is a complete source of protein, but with less fat, saturated fat and more fiber than animal foods. Research suggests that soy protein may help lower blood cholesterol levels. Eating soyfoods is also linked to a reduced risk of some cancers.
You’ll find a wide variety of soyfoods available in our stores, from soy milk and yogurt to tofu, soy burgers and hot dogs, edamame, tempeh, soy breakfast sausages and soy snack bars. Try some of these “soy” delicious options this month! You’ll not only love their great taste, but the great prices we offer on them everyday, too:
What are your favorite ways to use soy?