Category Archives: Taste

Natural flavors

Reading labels has become second nature to many of us.  So much so that I have to remind myself to make sure I have my reading glasses with me before setting out to shop. The phrase “natural flavors” pops up on ingredient listings now and then so I set out to find out just what… Continue Reading

A year’s worth of survival meals for $300?

Last week, I shared some thoughts on using couponing strategies for “prepping” – storing food, water and supplies to prepare for an unexpected emergency. One of my readers sent an interesting follow-up question: “Dear Jill, Have you seen the recipe for a survival soup for preparing for disasters? I’ve seen this recipe online on quite… Continue Reading

Superfast dinner tonight

This combination of honey and sesame oil makes a simple chicken dinner special. Honey and Sesame-Glazed Chicken Breasts with Green Beans 6 tablespoons unsalted chicken stock 1/3 cup honey 2 tablespoons dark sesame oil, divided 1 1/2 tablespoons whole-grain mustard 4 (6-ounce) skinless, boneless chicken breast halves 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt, divided 1/2 teaspoon ground… Continue Reading

Satisfy your sweet tooth

Satisfy your sweet tooth

MAGIC PEACH COBBLER Servings: makes 10 servings Preparation time: 15 minutes Cooking time: about 1 hour INGREDIENTS Filling: 1 1/2 cups water 1/2 cup sugar 1/3 cup light corn syrup 5 cups frozen sliced peaches, thawed Topping: 1 1/2 cups sugar 1 cup self-rising flour 1/2 teaspoon baking powder 1 cup 2 percent milk, mixed… Continue Reading

Add a little shrimp to your dinner

Add a little shrimp to your dinner

TARRAGON SHRIMP WITH EASY RISOTTO Servings: makes 4 servings Preparation time: 15 minutes; refrigeration time: 15 to 30 minutes Cooking time: about 22 minutes for rice and 3 minutes for shrimp; standing time: 1 minute INGREDIENTS 1 pound large shrimp, cleaned and deveined, tails on 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice 1 tablespoon olive oil 3… Continue Reading

Column: Creamy soup without the cream

We all love creamy soups but not all the calories that come with them. This bit of kitchen wizardry comes straight out of Cooking Light and involves no slight of hand; how to get a creamy soup without using the cream. The secret is using an emulsion. Long have we used these when making salad… Continue Reading

Readers share stock-up savings tips

Last week, I shared the story of a reader who needed help explaining why stocking up on multiple items is a good idea, as her husband wasn’t convinced that it would save them money. My readers have been sharing their own thoughts on stocking up and saving: “Dear Jill, I read with interest the letter… Continue Reading

Column: How to: Stock a pantry

Having a few staples in your pantry and a few easy last minute recipes can make all the difference in how easy or hard it is to come up with menu ideas and quick, healthy meals. And it is easy — I swear. • Always have foundation ingredients — things like canned beans, broths and… Continue Reading

Divine dessert: Balsamic roasted cherries

Divine dessert: Balsamic roasted cherries

End a meal with this divine dessert from Le Creuset. BALSAMIC ROASTED CHERRIES Heat oven to 450 degrees. Whisk together 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar, 1 tablespoon sugar, 1/2 teaspoon cornstarch and 1/2 tablespoon canola oil. Toss with 2 cups pitted dark cherries (lightly drained). Spread in a single layer in a roasting pan. Roast 20… Continue Reading

A spicy, meaty appetizer to prepare for a busy weekend

A spicy, meaty appetizer to prepare for a busy weekend

MEATBALL JALAPENO POPPERS Servings: makes 26 appetizers Preparation time: 15 minutes Cooking time: 25 to 30 minutes INGREDIENTS 13 medium fresh jalapeno peppers 1 (8-ounce) package reduced-fat cream cheese, softened 13 frozen, fully cooked meatballs (such as Casa Di Bertacchi or another brand), thawed and halved 13 slices uncooked bacon, halved Heat oven to 375… Continue Reading

A mid-winter break

February seems to be one of those months that just screams for a break from the ordinary. A short month where one can catch up and see to packing away the holidays and enjoy the sentiment of Valentine’s Day with those we love. Take a moment to catch up on a healthy diet and add… Continue Reading

On budget, tasty meal

On budget, tasty meal

BARBECUE PULLED CHICKEN Barbecue pulled chicken is certainly budget- and flavor-friendly. In a 4-quart or larger slow cooker, combine 1 (14.5-ounce) can drained no-salt-added diced tomatoes, 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar, 2 tablespoons honey, 1 tablespoon smoked paprika, 1 tablespoon soy sauce, 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard and 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper; mix well. Add… Continue Reading

This is how I do it FAB ladies

At the last FAB meeting of 2015 the group was brainstorming ideas for the upcoming FAB conference in April. (If you have never attended a FAB — For, About, By — Women’s Conference I invite you and your friends to come and enjoy an afternoon of motivational speaking, ideas, trends, topics of concern for working… Continue Reading

Serve up a beef kebab tonight

Serve up a beef kebab tonight

BEEF, PEPPER AND MUSHROOM KEBABS Servings: makes 4 servings Preparation time: 15 minutes Cooking time: less than 15 minutes INGREDIENTS 1 pound boneless beef top sirloin steak, cut 1-inch thick 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice 1 tablespoon olive oil 1 tablespoon water 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard 1 teaspoon honey 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano leaves 1/4… Continue Reading

For your Valentine

Valentine’s Day is filled with confessions of affection and a few heart-felt admissions of how much better one’s life is with those special people in your life. With that thinking, I’ve been debating making some special treats to send the kids. I’m liking really great chocolate chip cookies made special with dried sweet cherries. Who… Continue Reading

Saving money on children’s birthday parties

“Dear Jill, Awhile back you wrote about the costs of raising children, particularly sports and extra-curricular activities. I would be interested in your thoughts on saving money on children’s birthday parties. My daughter, who is nine, has been invited to some pricey parties with her friends from school. They’ve gone horseback riding, gone to a… Continue Reading

Column: Why didn’t these new products succeed?

I enjoy trying new products, especially when I get a great deal with a coupon or a sale. However, not every new product in the marketplace is a necessary addition to shoppers’ lives or lifestyles. Over the years, I’ve seen some unusual products come and go, some of which seemed doomed from the start. Here… Continue Reading

Column: Comfort food at sunrise

This is one of those moments — why didn’t I think of this sooner? Make your casserole the night before, in fact it is better if you do, and the next morning you can pop it into the oven while you shower and set the table. The basic ratio of a breakfast casserole is one… Continue Reading

A vegetable with flare

A vegetable with flare

GREEN BEANS WITH OLIVES, SUN-DRIED TOMATOES AND WALNUTS Servings: makes 4 servings Preparation time: less than 15 minutes Cooking time: 5 minutes for walnuts; less than 10 minutes for green beans INGREDIENTS 1/2 cup coarsely chopped walnuts 1 tablespoon olive oil (or oil from sun-dried tomatoes) 3/4 pound fresh thin green beans, ends trimmed 1/4… Continue Reading

Big changes for big food

In the past five years America’s top 25 food and drink companies have lost $18 billion in market share. A direct link to the fact that consumers are calling for more transparency in how everyday foods are made and just what the ingredient lists mean. And nothing gets big businesses’ attention  quicker than losses on… Continue Reading

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