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Food and Beverage

A Full, Festive Menu for Holiday Celebrations

From the hors d’oeuvres to the main course and all the way through dessert, creating a full holiday menu doesn’t have to be hard.

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(Family Features) From the hors d’oeuvres to the main course and all the way through dessert, creating a full holiday menu doesn’t have to be hard.

The key to a successful feast is focusing on dishes that can please loved ones of all ages and palates, such as a festive salad before the turkey or ham main dish, which can be accompanied by complementary sides like au gratin potatoes. Finally, top off the celebration with a divine dessert featuring classic cranberry flavor.

To find more holiday recipe inspiration, visit Culinary.net.

Start Holiday Celebrations with a Salad

With a bed of tender, leafy green spinach and pops of red cranberries, a salad lends itself perfectly to the colors and flavors of the holiday season. Plus, as a lighter bite ahead of the big meal, it makes for a delicious introduction to festive dinner parties, family gatherings and get-togethers.

This Spinach Christmas Tree Salad offers a fresh, festive option that adds a seasonal presentation to the table while inviting guests to take a bite. Harvested at the peak of flavor, tender Fresh Express Baby Spinach has a mild and delicate taste that makes it an ideal addition to recipes throughout the holidays.

Find more ways to freshen up your holiday menu at FreshExpress.com.

Spinach Christmas Tree Salad

Servings: 6

  • 2 packages (5 ounces each) Fresh Express Baby Spinach
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries, divided
  • 1/3 cup pistachios, divided
  • 1/2 cup feta cheese, divided
  • 1 red pepper, cored, cut into thin strips
  • 1 large apple, thinly sliced, cut into star shapes

Dressing:

  • 1 cup whole berry cranberry sauce
  • 3 tablespoons cranberry juice
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon light brown sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  1. In large bowl, toss baby spinach with 1/4 cup dried cranberries, 1/6 cup pistachios and 1/4 cup feta cheese. Transfer to Christmas tree cake mold. Neatly arrange spinach leaves to create smooth surface.
  2. Arrange red pepper strips, trimming as needed, to create garland. Arrange remaining dried cranberries, remaining pistachios and remaining feta cheese as “ornaments” on top of spinach. Create tree topper with one apple star; place remaining apple stars around “tree.”
  3. To make dressing: In blender, process cranberry sauce, cranberry juice, balsamic vinegar, honey, olive oil, brown sugar and salt until smooth.

A Hearty Holiday Side Dish

From appetizers and snacks to the main course, sides and sweets, almost everyone has a favorite holiday dish. However, it’s the pairings and complementary dishes that make festive get-togethers special.

This Creamy Au Gratin Potatoes with Kale and Gruyere is an ideal example of a savory side that goes well with a variety of holiday meals, making it a perfect option for families seeking a versatile recipe to serve with dinner. Rosy-skinned and white-fleshed, Wisconsin Round Red potatoes have a firm, smooth and moist texture, making them well-suited for roasting in this hearty dish.

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Visit eatwisconsinpotatoes.com to discover more recipes fit for serving your loved ones.

Creamy Au Gratin Potatoes with Kale and Gruyere

Recipe courtesy of Wisconsin Potatoes

  • 1 1/2 cups heavy cream
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 cloves garlic, smashed
  • 3 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 3 cloves shallots, diced
  • 4 large kale leaves, finely chopped (discard stems)
  • 2 pounds red potatoes, sliced 1/8 inch
  • 2 ounces gruyere cheese, grated
  • 1 ounce Parmesan cheese, grated
  1. Heat oven to 325 F.
  2. In small saucepan over medium heat, combine cream, salt, black pepper, garlic and thyme; stir constantly, until cream starts to bubble, 4-6 minutes. When bubbling, remove from heat and stir until slightly cooled. Let cream sit.
  3. Heat large (12-inch) oven-safe skillet over medium-high heat. Add butter. When butter melts, add shallots and kale leaves. Saute until kale is tender and bright green, about 4 minutes. Turn off burner.
  4. Add sliced potatoes to skillet, fanning over top of kale.
  5. Use slotted spoon to remove garlic and thyme from heavy cream. Pour heavy cream over potatoes.
  6. Cover skillet tightly with foil and bake until potatoes are tender, 75-85 minutes.
  7. Remove skillet from oven and turn on broiler. Discard foil.
  8. Sprinkle gruyere and Parmesan cheeses over potatoes, tucking some cheese between potato slices.
  9. Return skillet to oven and broil until top is golden brown, 5-6 minutes.

Dish Up a Divine Holiday Dessert

Give your holiday gatherings a new twist this year with a creamy cranberry delight that’s a cause for celebration all on its own. Smooth, divine taste at the dessert table can be the memorable moment your family craves year after year.

This rich, festive Cranberry Cheesecake combines classic flavor with a homemade cranberry compote-infused layer above a crust sweetly made using C&H Light Brown Sugar and graham crackers. Top it all off with fresh and sugared cranberries, rosemary springs and whipped cream for a tempting treat that tastes as good as it looks.

To find more sweet eats to celebrate the holidays, visit chsugar.com.

Cranberry Cheesecake

Prep time: 45 minutes
Cook time: 1 hour, 15 minutes

Cranberry Compote:

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  • 2 cups fresh cranberries
  • 1 cup C&H Light Brown Sugar
  • 1/4 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
  • 1 teaspoon freshly grated orange zest

Crust:

  • 2 cups graham cracker crumbs
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 3 tablespoons C&H Light Brown Sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

Cheesecake:

  • 3 packages (8 ounces each) cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 2 cups C&H Organic Raw Cane Sugar
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 4 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup sour cream, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup cranberry compote
  • fresh cranberries
  • sugared cranberries
  • rosemary sprigs
  • whipped cream
  1. To make cranberry compote: In medium saucepan, bring cranberries, brown sugar, orange juice and orange zest to boil. Lower heat and simmer 10-15 minutes, or until most cranberries burst. Remove from heat. Cool completely at room temperature then transfer to bowl; refrigerate.
  2. To make crust: Preheat oven to 350 F. Butter 8-inch springform pan and line bottom with parchment paper. Set aside.
  3. In medium bowl, mix cracker crumbs, butter, brown sugar and salt. Press crumb mixture into bottom of prepared pan. Bake 15 minutes. Remove from oven and set aside. Reduce oven temperature to 325 F.
  4. To make cheesecake: In bowl of electric mixer fitted with paddle attachment, beat cream cheese at medium speed until smooth. Add cane sugar and beat 2-3 minutes. Scrape sides of bowl as needed. Add flour, vanilla and salt. Beat 1 minute until incorporated.
  5. Add one egg at a time, mixing until incorporated. Add sour cream and mix 1 minute. Scrape sides of bowl as needed. In medium bowl, mix half of cheesecake batter with 1/2 cup cranberry compote.
  6. Wrap springform pan with aluminum foil and place in large roasting pan. Pour cream cheese and cranberry mixture into prepared pan. Top with remaining cream cheese batter. Place roasting pan in oven and add hot water to 1-inch of springform pan. Bake 1 hour, 15 minutes, or until cake looks set in center. Remove from oven and rest 1 hour. Refrigerate in pan overnight.
  7. Decorate cake with fresh and sugared cranberries, rosemary springs and whipped cream.


SOURCE:
Fresh Express

Wisconsin Potatoes

C&H Sugar

 

Rebecca Jo is a mother of four and is a creative soul from Phoenix, Arizona, who also enjoys new adventures. Rebecca Jo has a passion for the outdoors and indulges in activities like camping, fishing, hunting and riding roller coasters.

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FDA CDC News

Food Safety Tips for Game Day

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/PRNewswire/ — Super Bowl Sunday is coming up and you may be planning a party with friends and family. These parties often involve finger foods, communal dishes, and treats that are left out for long periods of time—which can lead to foodborne illness (also known as food poisoning).  Don’t let foodborne illness ruin the fun. Check out these tips from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and learn how you can keep your food safe.

Food Safety Tips for Game Day

CLEAN

  • Wash your hands with warm water and soap for at least 20 seconds before and after handling food and after using the bathroom, changing diapers, and handling pets.
  • Wash your cutting boards, dishes, utensils, and counter tops with hot soapy water after preparing each food item.
  • Rinse fresh fruits and vegetables under running tap water, including those with skins and rinds that are not eaten. Scrub firm produce with a clean produce brush.

SEPERATE

  • Separate raw meat, poultry, seafood, and eggs from other foods in your shopping cart, grocery bags, and refrigerator.
  • Use one cutting board for fresh produce and a separate one for raw meat, poultry, and seafood.
  • Never place cooked food on a plate that previously held raw meat, poultry, seafood, or eggs unless the plate has been washed in hot, soapy water.
  • Don’t reuse marinades used on raw foods unless you bring them to a boil first.
  • If baking, make sure that no raw flour is on surfaces that contact other foods.

COOK

  • Use a food thermometer to ensure the safety of meat, poultry, seafood, and egg products. These foods must be cooked to a safe minimum internal temperature to destroy any harmful bacteria.
  • When cooking in a microwave oven, cover food, stir, and rotate for even cooking. If there is no turntable, rotate the dish by hand once or twice during cooking. Always allow standing time, which completes the cooking, before checking the internal temperature with a food thermometer.

CHILL

  • Refrigerate or freeze meat, poultry, eggs, seafood, and other perishables within 2 hours of cooking or purchasing. Refrigerate within 1 hour if the temperature outside is above 90° F.
  • Divide large amounts of leftovers into shallow containers for quicker cooling in the refrigerator.

SERVE

  • Keep cold foods chilled to 40 °F or below and hot foods heated to 140 °F or above.
  • If you’re planning a buffet and aren’t sure how quickly the food will be eaten, keep serving portions small. Prepare a number of small platters and dishes ahead of time and replace the serving dishes with the fresh ones throughout the party.
  • Don’t add new food to an already filled serving dish. Instead, replace nearly empty serving dishes with freshly filled ones.
  • Watch the clock with leftovers. Whether you’re sending “doggie bags” home with guests or are saving them for yourself, leftovers should be refrigerated as soon as guests arrive home and/or within 2 hours!

Learn more at:
http://www.fda.gov/Food/FoodborneIllnessContaminants/BuyStoreServeSafeFood/ucm328131.htm

SOURCE U.S. Food and Drug Administration

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Food and Beverage

SING A CHEESY NEW TUNE WITH THE RELEASE OF “BLOCK JAMS” FROM TILLAMOOK®

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Dairy Co-Op Drops Album of Cheddar-Inspired Tracks by TikTok Creators That You Never Knew You Needed

TILLAMOOK /PRNewswire/ — Big Game viewers are encouraged to turn up their snack games with Tillamook’s bold cheddar slices, shreds, and blocks, all while munching along to “Block Jams,” a compilation of cheddar tracks that will literally get eaters everywhere singing a cheesy new tune.

The creative campaign is the first-ever Big Game advertisement from the beloved dairy co-op, Tillamook County Creamery Association (TCCA). A modern (and more delicious) take on the classic CD infomercial, the spot was developed by TCCA in partnership with creative agency 72andSunny Los Angeles. “Block Jams” features three TikTok creators dropping bold and epic music tracks inspired by their favorite Tillamook Cheddar products:

“This campaign is about helping consumers to make the best possible choice for their game day spreads and hopefully we’re bringing a little joy through the power of music at the same time,” said Kate Boltin, Vice President, Brand Marketing, TCCA. “The ear-worm tracks on Block Jams, that we are so honored to have partnered on with these talented creators, not only underscore our uncompromising brand commitment to quality standards, but are meant to be fun reminders as shoppers peruse the grocery store aisles too.”

While some tune in for the game, food is *actually* the #1 reason most people gather on football’s favorite Sunday1. Knowing that food is the real MVP, TCCA is making bold moves to ensure that consumers Big Game snacks are a touchdown. TCCA’s delicious dairy products are made the right way – without shortcuts or compromises – from the brand’s uncompromising standards to carefully sourced ingredients and making products with care, Tillamook Cheddar makes every bite the grate-est bite ever. 

“Tillamook Cheddar is so good, it needed to be celebrated. Musically! So, we tapped the TikTok creator community to bring their fresh and unexpected takes on Tillamook Cheddar with songs of love and dairy devotion,” said 72andSunny.

Tillamook’s “Block Jams” is running across connected TV, digital video, social, audio, and out of home. Cheddar and music enthusiasts alike can tune in at tillamook.com/block-jams. The spot will be running in 22 local markets during Music’s Biggest Night on February 5 and the Big Game on February 12.

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Block Jams is not sold in stores, but Tillamook Cheddar is. Tillamook products are available at major retailers nationwide. Find products at a store near you at Tillamook.com

About Tillamook County Creamery Association Founded in 1909 as a farmer-owned cooperative, Tillamook County Creamery Association (TCCA) recently achieved the distinction as a Certified B Corporation® (B Corp™) and prides itself on its commitment to bringing to market the most consistent, best tasting, highest quality dairy products made in the most natural way possible. Guided by the belief that everyone deserves real food that makes them feel good every day, Tillamook® produces internationally recognized, award-winning cheese as well as exceptional ice cream, butter, cream cheese spreads, yogurt, and sour cream, made with unwavering values that never sacrifice or compromise quality for profit. TCCA is owned by a group of farming families, primarily based in Tillamook County, Oregon. TCCA operates production facilities in Tillamook and Boardman, Oregon and employs more than 900 people throughout the state. The Tillamook Creamery is the largest tourist attraction on the coast of Oregon and one of the most popular in the state, attracting more than one million visitors each year. For more information on TCCA and Tillamook, visit Tillamook.com

1 https://swnsdigital.com/us/2020/01/majority-of-people-enjoy-the-food-more-than-the-football-game-at-a-super-bowl-party/

SOURCE Tillamook County Creamery Association

https://stmdailynews.com/category/entertainment/

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Food and Beverage

Today is ‘NATIONAL HOT CHOCOLATE DAY!’

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Each year on January 31st, National Hot Chocolate Day warms up people across the country by celebrating the timeless cold-weather beverage.

January 31, 2023 is National Hot Chocolate Day

Hot chocolate, also known as hot cocoa or drinking chocolate, is a heated drink consisting of shaved chocolate, melted chocolate or cocoa powder, heated milk or water, and usually a sweetener like whipped cream or marshmallows. Hot chocolate made with melted chocolate is sometimes called drinking chocolate, characterized by less sweetness and a thicker consistency.

The first chocolate drink is believed to have been created by the Maya around 2,500–3,000 years ago, and a cocoa drink was an essential part of Aztec culture by 1400 AD, by which they referred to as xocōlātl.[2] The drink became popular in Europe after being introduced from Mexico in the New World and has undergone multiple changes since then. Until the 19th century, hot chocolate was used medicinally to treat ailments such as liver and stomach diseases.

Hot chocolate is consumed throughout the world and comes in multiple variations, including the spiced chocolate para mesa of Latin America, the very thick cioccolata calda served in Italy and chocolate a la taza served in Spain, and the thinner hot cocoa consumed in the United States. Prepared hot chocolate can be purchased from a range of establishments, including cafeteriasfast food restaurantscoffeehouses and teahouses. Powdered hot chocolate mixes, which can be added to boiling water or hot milk to make the drink at home, are sold at grocery stores and online. (wikipedia)

Links:

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National Day Calendar: https://nationaldaycalendar.com/national-hot-chocolate-day-january-31/

Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hot_chocolate

Visit our Food and Drink section: https://stmdailynews.com/category/food-and-beverage/

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