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Hot Trends: Strawberries Recipes, Reviews & Guides
Strawberry FAQS By Aimee Plesa Who can resist the call of a sweet, juicy strawberry? Their bright color lights up the eyes of the young and old alike while their flavor perks up the drabbest of menus. Strawberries are not only festive looking and delicious, they are also a healthy part of a balanced diet.
Nutritional Facts • A one-cup serving of strawberries provides: • 45 Calories with 1g Protein and no Fat • 93% of your day's supply of Vitamin C • 16% of your day's supply of Fiber • 20% of your day's supply of Folic Acid • 4% of your day's supply of Iron 2% of your day's supply of Calcium Strawberries are naturally fat free and low in calories
Did You Know??? • It is believed that the strawberry was originally named the “strewn berry” because its berries were strewn about the plant’s greenery. • Technically speaking, strawberries are not berries at all. Botanists classify berries as having their seeds on the inside of the fruit. • The average strawberry is adorned with 200 seeds. • It takes a berry on average three days to go through its color • cycle, from green to white then red. • California produces over 80% of the American strawberry crop. • A mixture of strawberry juice and honey can help alleviate the inflammation caused by sunburn.
HOW TO MAKE CHOCOLATE COVERED STRAWBERRIES Ingredients • 1 pound fresh strawberries • 1 bag chocolate coating, your choice of flavor Directions • Rinse berries and dry thoroughly. • Melt chocolate coating in the microwave, stopping every 30 seconds to stir until coating is nearly melted. Remove from microwave and stir until smooth. Using the stem, dip berries into chocolate, one at a time, and allow excess to drip back into bowl. Place on waxed paper and allow to set up before eating or serving.
Growing Strawberries In The Home Landscape By: Criss Wittmann & Dave Wittmann Strawberries are a delicious and versatile addition to any kitchen. Growing them at home can be a challenge, but, well worth the effort. Types According to The Ohio State University Extension agency, there are two main types of strawberry plants that are viable in Ohio-June Bearing and Day Neutral. There is also a third type of strawberry plant that is known as Ever Bearing. There are advantages and disadvantages to all three: • June Bearing: Berries are large and produce in late spring. The plants only produce fruit once per year. The first year, all flower blossoms must be plucked to allow plant to become well established. The “mother plant” sends out runners that root and form a mat. • Day Neutral: Berries are small but sweet. Pluck the first set of blossoms, then allow the fruit to set and you should have fruit all summer. • Ever Bearing: A bit of a misnomer as they only produce berries twice per year, once in the spring and once in the fall. During the first year, pull all blossoms from the plants until the end of June. After that, blossoms and fruit should develop for a full harvest. All three types have a productive life span of three to four years. After that, plants should be replaced. Twenty-five to thirty plants should provide a nice crop for a family of four. Planting and Spacing June Bearing and Ever Bearing plants: Rows should be about three to four feet apart with plants spaced one to two feet apart within the row. • Day Neutral plants: Rows should be about three feet apart with plants twelve to eighteen inches apart within the rows. •
When choosing a site for your strawberry bed, choose a site that gets at least 6 hours of sun per day. Full sun is preferable. Choose a site that has not had grass, tomatoes or peppers planted there recently. These plants harbor insects and disease which can be deadly to your strawberry plants. When planting strawberries, make sure that the hole is deep enough to plant the roots vertically. Take care to not cut or damage the roots as the strawberry root is delicate and damage could kill the plant. Cover the roots and no more than half of the crown (main stem) of the plant with soil and organic matter. General planting tip for fruits and vegetables: When planting fruits and vegetables, water the bottom of the hole before placing the plant. This allows the roots easier access to the water and minimizes stress on the plant.
Feeding and Watering Large amounts of organic matter, such as manure and humus, should provide sufficient nutrients for your strawberries. Nitrogen and lime fertilizers can be used if desired. Strawberries prefer slightly acidic conditions. The Ohio State University Extension Agency recommends pH levels of 5.8 to 6.5. Soil testing can be obtained by contacting the local office of The Ohio State Extension Agency, or you can invest in a home testing kit and/or a soil meter. Kits and meters both start at about $10 and are available at most nurseries and home improvement stores. General feeding tip: Plant food should not be applied until newly transplanted plants have had ten to fourteen days to establish themselves. Renovation After the last harvest of the year, plants should be renovated. This can be done by raising your lawn mower to the highest setting and mowing the leaves of the plants. Then, cultivate between rows, thinning plant rows to a width of about twelve inches. Next thin plants leaving four to six inches between plants. This will ensure a strong, healthy plant the next spring. General Care Strawberries do not compete well and should be kept weed free. Due to the shallow and delicate root system, hand weeding and mulching are preferred. If you do use tools, take care not to damage the root systems. Strawberries are very susceptible to frost damage. Straw, newspaper or insulating containers should be placed on plants in the fall prior to temperatures dropping below 20 degrees F. Insulation should be removed in early spring. Keep these materials handy and re-cover when frost is expected. Strawberries can also be grown in containers following the same general rules for growing in beds. Container plants will need to be moved into a garage or a basement for winter. References used for this article: Gardening-Guides.com; The Ohio State University Extension Agency FactSheet HYG-1224-98 Where to Buy: 1. North Dayton Garden Center. 1309 Brandt Pike, Dayton 2. Knollwood Garden Center. 3766 Dayton Xenia Road, Beavercreek 3. Siebenthaler’s. 6000 Far Hills Avenue, Centerville. 2074 Beaver Valley Road, 4. Beavercreek 5. Stockslager’s. 14037 Eaton Pike, New Lebanon 6. Bern’s Garden Center. 825 Greentree Road, Middletown. 3776 Indian Ripple Road, 7. Beavercreek 8. Grandma’s Gardens. 8107 Ohio 48, Waynesville 9. Beyond the Greenhouse. 490 North Main Street, Springboro 10. Meijer, Walmart, Lowe’s and Home Depot locations throughout the greater Dayton area. 11. 12.
Topsy Turvy Strawberries By Heather Bryant I lived in an apartment last season when I found this wonder of gardening for $10.00 at Wal-Mart. I was so excited because I could have fresh strawberries grown right outside my door without any garden space needed! I grabbed potting soil, strawberry seedlings (see varieties later in article) and some fertilizer and set to work (what Felknor Ventures the makers suggested). Opening the box I found the patented UV resistant plastic sleeve, a hanger (rust proof and swiveling) and a recipe/ instruction booklet. From family experience I knew that I needed to put a layer of potting soil in first so that there would be a base to set the first seedlings on. I opened the top and scooped in a few inches of soil in to reach the first starburst port openings then placed two seedlings (approximately 3-8 inch tall) in each. I alternated between the soil and seedlings until I reached the top, added fertilizer and replaced the top. Topsy Turvy says that you cannot over water so I did not balk at the gallon of water that it called for (due to the drainage system at the bottom). It is recommended that the planter has at least 6 hours of sun each day along with a good watering daily. Why grow strawberries this unique way you ask? Well besides not having to have a lot of area for them to grow, this way of growing actually pulls down the nutrients, there are no pesticides, digging or weeding and greatly reduces the chances of ground fungus, harmful bacteria and cut worm damage. On top of all those great reasons the sleeve acts like a greenhouse, thus warming the plant and enticing them to explode out and thrive. The upside down growing allows gravity to get the nutrients and water directly to the roots. Also when they spend less time fighting these issues they have more time to grow bigger, juicer berries. Growing season can be extended as well because the planter can be brought in when the weather turns cool. I also found that you can grow herbs in this planter after I researched other ways Topsy Turvy grows things. They offer several varieties of the hanging sleeves; the tomato I know differs because the plants hang from the bottom not the sides as they do with the strawberry one. This is also an organic way of growing because you control exactly what goes in from the start. For the strawberry plants I did research on what grows best here in Ohio. I read many sites that say that the Everbearing variety is best for many but I chose Red Chief since it has large fruit, bears mid season and have firm juicy berries. Since we live in the USDA Hardiness Zone 5&6 Red Chief, Guardian, Kent, Lateglow, Sure Crop, Tribute, Tristar and Earliglow varieties work
well for our hardiness zone according to OSU Extension. When you get your plants you will want to take off any leaves that look dry or dead as well so that they have the best start. With the watering recommendations followed, I was able to harvest many berries and my family enjoyed them greatly. Try a Topsy Turvy out, you will be amazed! Where to buy: • Walmart • Home Depot • Drug Mart • Ace Hardware • Do It Best Hardware • Topsy Turvy website • Amazon.com
How To Pick and Store Strawberries Information provided by Driscoll’s Berries How to pick berries: When selecting your strawberry, look for symmetrically shaped berries with a brilliant sheen and rich, even red color. Look for strawberries that are clean and dry with fresh, unwilted caps (called the calyx) and avoid strawberries with seedy tips or white shoulders. When choosing blueberries, look for berries that are dry, plump, round and free of dents and bruises. Blueberries should have a soft, hazy white coating, which is called “bloom.” Bloom is a completely natural part of the berries’ defense mechanism and helps protect them from the harsh rays of the sun. You should avoid blueberries that are shriveled or lack bloom. When choosing raspberries, look for plump, evenly colored berries that have a soft, hazy gloss and are free of dents and bruises. Raspberries have tiny hairs on them called “styles.” These are a completely natural part of the fruit’s defense mechanism and do not affect the taste or ripeness of the berries. When choosing blackberries, look for deep, evenly colored berries with a nice sheen. The berries should be plump and dry and should not have dents or bruises. Blackberries range in color from deep blue/purple to deep purple/black. They are often two-tone in color, which is perfectly natural and does not affect ripeness. Storing berries: It is important to treat your berries with care. Berries taste best when kept chilled. For long lasting berries, Driscoll’s recommends that you store your strawberries in their original container. Always refrigerate your berries immediately and don’t wash them until you are ready to use them. When you are ready to eat your berries. gently rinse berries under cool water. After washing, allow your berries to reach room temperature before serving – this will enhance their natural flavors. With good care, blueberries should keep for 5-7 days in your refrigerator. For best results, Driscoll’s recommends that you keep your blueberries dry in storage, and eat them as soon after purchase as possible. Raspberries and blackberries are highly perishable, and also extremely fragile. Under ideal conditions, raspberries and blackberries should keep for 1-2 days in your refrigerator. For more information about Driscoll’s Berries, please visit them on the web www.driscolls.com
For The Kids Finish drawing this strawberry then color it in.
Strawberry Caprese Pasta Salad Prep time: 20 minutes Makes: 4-6 servings Ingredients 8 ounces Driscoll’s Strawberries 8 ounces shell pasta, cooked, rinsed and cooled 8 ounces fresh mozzarella balls, drained 1/4 cup slivered fresh basil 1/4 cup slivered red onion 1/4 cup prepared balsamic vinaigrette Directions Rinse, hull and quarter strawberries. Combine strawberries, pasta, mozzarella, basil and onion in a large bowl. (Can be prepared to this point and refrigerated until ready to serve.) Drizzle with vinaigrette and mix gently until ingredients are well coated.
Strawberry Avocado Salsa Prep time: 15 minutes Makes 3-1/2 cups Ingredients 1 package (16 ounces) Driscoll’s Strawberries 1 can (8 ounces) pineapple tidbits or chunks 1 small avocado, pitted and diced
1/2 to 1 jalapeño pepper, seeded and minced 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar 1/2 teaspoon onion salt Directions Rinse and hull strawberries. Cut into 3/4inch cubes. Drain pineapple, reserving juice. Combine pineapple, 2 tablespoons pineapple juice, strawberries, avocado, jalapeño to taste, balsamic vinegar and onion salt. Let stand 10 minutes for flavors to blend. Serving suggestion Combine remaining pineapple juice with 2 tablespoons soy sauce and 1/2 teaspoon sesame oil. Use to marinate halibut steaks or chicken breasts for 20-30 minutes. Grill or broil until done. Serve with Strawberry Avocado Salsa.
Goat Cheese and Strawberry Bruschetta Prep Times: 5 minutes Total time: 10 minutes Makes: 8 servings 2 per serving Ingredients 1 package (16 ounces) Driscoll’s Strawberries 1 8 ounce French baguette 8 ounces creamy and mild goat cheese, at room temperature 2 tablespoon honey Directions Rinse and hull strawberries. Slice baguette into 16 thin diagonal slices. Toast slices in a 350°F. oven 6 minutes, turning once or until crisp. Stir goat cheese and honey in a small bowl until
Recipes and images used on this page provided by Driscoll’s Berries and used with permission
blended; spread 1 tablespoon onto each toasted bread slice. Slice each strawberry into several thin slices partway through keeping it attached at the stem. Top each bruschetta with a fanned strawberry. Variations For a little different flavor try stirring in 1/4 teaspoon cracked black pepper or ground chipotle chili pepper for that sweet and hot flavor or 1 teaspoon finely chopped crystallized ginger. Also available are herb flavored goat cheese that you might want to substitute for the plain goat cheese. For added flavor a tablespoon finely chopped toasted pecans can be stirred into cheese mixture or prepared chopped Major Grey chutney.
Strawberry Smoothie Ingredients 4 large Driscoll’s strawberries 1 tsp of sugar 1/2 cup of whole milk 1 cup of ice cubes Directions Blend strawberries with milk on low speed till well smooth, than add ice cubes and blend on high. Add sugar and blend on high speed for about 1 minute. The texture should be slushy and smooth.
Ingredients 1 package (16 ounces) Driscoll’s Strawberries, hulled, divided 2 cups half and half 7 egg yolks 1/2 cup sugar 1 teaspoon vanilla 1/4 cup light brown sugar, divided Directions Heat oven to 325°F. Place six 6-ounce ramekins in a roasting pan; set aside. Coarsely chop 4 strawberries and evenly divided in bottom of each ramekin. Bring half and half to a boil in a saucepot over medium heat. Whisk egg yolks, sugar and vanilla in a bowl 2 minutes or until golden yellow. Slowly whisk hot half & half into egg mixture. Divide among prepared ramekins. Pour enough hot water into roasting pan to reach halfway up sides of ramekins. Bake 35 minutes or until edges of custard are set and center jiggles when ramekin is tapped. Remove from hot water bath and cool to room temperature. Cover each one with plastic wrap and refrigerate 2 hours or overnight. Heat broiler. Press through a sieve 2 teaspoon light brown sugar evenly over the top of each custard. Arrange custards on a baking sheet and place 2 inches from source of heat. Broil until sugar melts and bubbles. Top each with a strawberry halved. Tip Lighten up the recipe by replacing half and half with milk .
Strawberry Crème Brulee Prep time: 15 minutes Bake time: 35 minutes Makes 6 servings Recipes and images used on this page provided by Driscoll’s Berries and used with permission
Easy Strawberry Mousse 1 small package of strawberry gelatin 1 cup fresh strawberries, crushed or finely chopped. • 1 cup Cool Whip Directions Prepare gelatin according to package directions. When gelatin is syrupy, beat with hand mixer. Fold in strawberries and cool whip. Spoon into serving dishes, such as wine glasses or dessert bowls, and chill. (Criss Wittmann) • •
Cool Strawberry Soup 1 cup apple juice 1 cup water divided 2/3 cup sugar ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon 3 cups fresh strawberries 16 ounces of strawberry yogurt Extra strawberries to top Directions In a heavy duty sauce pan, add the apple juice, 3/4 cup of water, sugar, cinnamon bringing this mixture to a boil over medium heat. Remove from heat, let cool while adding the strawberries and rest of water into a blender, blend until smooth then pour into a large bowl. Add the cooled mixture as well as the yogurt. Cover and refrigerate for several hours. Pour into bowls and garnish with strawberries and mint leaves, if desired. Serves 6-8. (Heather Bryant) • • • • • • •
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White Chocolate Strawberry Pie 5 squares of white baking chocolate, divided 2 tablespoons of milk 1 (3) ounce package cream cheese, softened 1/3 cup confectioners’ sugar 1 teaspoon grated orange peel 1 cup whipped cream, whipped 1 (9) inch graham cracker crust 3 cups fresh strawberries
Directions In a microwave, cook 4 squares of chocolate with milk and let cool. To start 20 seconds, stir then in 5 second intervals stirring after each until completely melted, this keeps both the milk and chocolate from burning. In a mixing bowl beat cream cheese and sugar until smooth then add orange peel and chocolate/milk mixture and beat again. Fold in the whipped cream and spread into the pie crust covering entirely with strawberries. Melt the last square of chocolate and drizzle over strawberries, place in fridge for at least 1 ½ hours so that it sets. This pie makes about 8 servings, cover with plastic wrap to store in fridge. (Heather Bryant) Strawberry Rhubarb Custard Pie ¼ cup of all purpose flour ¼ teaspoon of salt 2 cups of fresh or frozen chopped rhubarb (defrosted) • 2 cups of fresh or frozen strawberries (defrosted) • 1 ½ cups of granulated sugar • 1 teaspoon of orange peel • ¼ teaspoon ground mace • 1 tablespoon butter (unsalted) • 1 tablespoon of margarine • 2 tablespoons of corn starch • ¾ teaspoon of ground nutmeg • 2 prepared pastry crusts Directions Prepare crusts as directed then toss rhubarb and strawberries with flour, sugar, orange peel, mace, nutmeg and corn starch placing this into bottom crust. Top mixture with butter and margarine then either cut top crust into long slices to make lattice or just top with second crust. Pinch/crimp edges of crusts, slicing 3 vents in top if needed. Bake at 450 degrees for 10 minutes then reduce • • •
to 350 degrees for 40-45 minutes or until crust is golden and filling is bubbling, cool for an hour and will yield 6-8 servings. (Heather Bryant) Easy & Elegant Strawberries and Pudding • Two packages of French Vanilla Instant Pudding mix • One quart strawberries • four cups milk separated • whipped cream (optional) • Mint sprigs (optional) • 6 wine glasses or similar serving dishes Directions Prepare one box of pudding as directed on the package. Pour the pudding in equal amounts into the wine glasses and place in the refrigerator. Wash and quarter the strawberries and set aside. Prepare the second box of pudding as directed on the package. Layer strawberries into your wine glasses and then pour remaining pudding on top of strawberries. Place in fridge and allow to set. When you are ready to serve, top each dish with a bit of whipped cream and garnish with a sprig of mint. (Dave Wittmann) Strawberry Shortcake 2 cups Jiffy mix 2 tablespoons sugar 3 tablespoons melted butter 1/2 cup milk 4 cups fresh strawberries 1/3 cup sugar whipped topping Directions Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Combine the first 4 ingredients, mix until a soft dough forms. Dust counter with a little more Jiffy mix and turn out dough. Knead 20-25 times. Roll dough out to 1/2 • • • • • • •
inch thick. Using a 3 inch round cutter, cut out 6 cakes. Bake 8-10 minutes. While shortcakes are baking, wash berries and remove stems. Cut into slices and toss with sugar. Set aside. When ready to serve, split the shortcakes, top each half with berries and garnish with whipped topping or fresh whipped cream. Serve immediately after topping with berries or the cakes will become soggy. (Aimee Plesa) Lemon Berry Smoothie • (1) 8 ounce container blueberry yogurt • 1 1/2 cups milk • 1 cup ice cubes • 1 cup blueberries • 1 cup strawberries • 1 teaspoon powdered lemonade mix Directions Combine all ingredients and blend until smooth-about 1 minute. Pour into glass and serve immediately. Fresh or frozen berries both work well in this recipe. To lower caloric intake, use low fat yogurt and skim milk. (Aimee Plesa) Orange Liqueur Infused Strawberries 16 large fresh strawberries with leaves, rinsed and dried • 1/2 cup Grand Marnier • 6 ounces dark chocolate confectionery coating • 6 ounces white chocolate confectionery coating Directions Using a new syringe, inject 2 teaspoons of Grand Marnier into each strawberry and allow berries to rest in the refrigerator for half an hour. Place confectionery coatings in separate bowls and melt in the microwave in 30 second intervals, stirring well after each 30 seconds. When nearly melted, stir until completely smooth. Line a baking sheet •
with waxed paper. Dip half of the strawberries in dark and the other half in white coating. Place each berry on the waxed paper as they are dipped and refrigerate until time to serve. (Aimee Plesa) Strawberry Bread • 2 cups of sliced strawberries • 1 cup sugar • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour • 1 teaspoon baking powder • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon • 1/4 teaspoon salt • 2 large eggs • 1/4 cup melted margarine • 1/4 cup applesauce Directions Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour a 9x5x3″ loaf pan. Place the strawberries in a bowl and sprinkle with 1/2 cup of sugar. In a large bowl, blend together the remaining sugar, the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon. In a medium bowl, beat the eggs until foamy before beating in the margarine and the applesauce. Stir in the strawberries. Combine the two mixtures, blending until the dry ingredients are moistened. Scrape the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 45 to 55 minutes, until a cake tester inserted into the center comes out clean and the top is golden. Remove from the oven and cool the pan on a wire rack for 5-10 minutes before removing the loaf from the pan. (Dawn Vinson)
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Strawberry Pomegranate Sugar Cookies 3 1/2 cups flour 3/4 teaspoon baking powder 1/4 teaspoon salt 1 1/2 cup sugar 1 cup butter
1 egg, beaten 1 tablespoon milk 1/4 cup pomegranate juice Handful of strawberries Directions Puree the strawberries, strain the puree and set aside. Cream together the butter, sugar, and strawberry puree. Add the milk and egg. The dough will be runny but will stiffen up as you keep mix. Add pomegranate juice. In a separate bowl mix the dry ingredients and add to the batter a little at a time. After flour has all been added taste mixture, you can add more sugar if needed. Put dough in refrigerator for half hour. Roll out cookie dough and cut the cookies. Place on cookie sheet a couple inches apart. Bake at 350 for ten minutes. Transfer to counter to cool. After cookies have cooled completely add glaze to cookie. Allow to harden before storing. • • • •
Pomegranate Glaze • 3 tablespoons pomegranate juice • 1/4 cup sugar Directions Mix together to make a glaze. Refrigerate after making and then drizzle on cool cookies. (Dawn Vinson) Strawberry Pancakes Pancakes of your choice Sliced strawberries Strawberry glaze Whip cream Directions Clean and wash strawberries. Slice and mix with strawberry glaze. Make pancakes of your choice. While pancakes are warm spoon strawberry mixture into middle, roll the pancake, place seam side down and repeat. Once you have two or three pancakes. Top with strawberry syrup and whip cream. (Dawn Vinson) • • • •
Strawberry Friendship Bread 1 cup Amish Friendship Bread starter 3 eggs 1 cup oil 1/2 cup milk 1 cup sugar 1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder 1/2 teaspoon salt 1/2 teaspoon baking soda 2 cups flour 1 box strawberry jello 1-1/2 cups fresh strawberries, sliced or frozen strawberries, defrosted, drained and sliced Directions Preheat oven to 325° F. In a large mixing bowl, add ingredients as listed. Grease two large loaf pans. Dust the greased pans with granulated sugar. Pour the batter evenly into loaf or cake pans. Bake for one hour or until the bread loosens evenly from the sides and a toothpick inserted in the center of the bread comes out clean. (Dawn Vinson) • • • • • • • • • • •
Strawberry Spinach Salad • 2 bags of fresh spinach • 1 small red onion (optional) • 1 quart fresh strawberries, slices Dressing: • 1/2 cup sugar • 1 tablespoon poppy seeds • 2 tablespoons sesame seeds • 1 1/2 tablespoon onion • 1/4 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce • 1/4 teaspoon paprika • 1/2 cup salad oil • 1/4 cup cider vinegar Directions Mix dressing together and refrigerate. If you don’t want to use this dressing use a bottle of poppy seed dressing. Tear washed spinach into pieces. Toss with dressing. Add strawberries and onion. Toss lightly and serve. (Dawn Vinson)
Strawberry Pretzel Salad 2 cups crushed pretzels 3/4 cup melted butter 3 tablespoons sugar, plus 3/4 cup sugar • 1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese • 2 (8-ounce) container whipped topping • 2 (3-ounce) packages strawberry gelatin dessert mix • 2 cups boiling water • 2 (10-ounce) packages frozen strawberries • 1 (8-ounce) can crushed pineapple Directions Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. For the crust, mix the pretzels, butter, and 3 tablespoons of sugar. Press this mixture into a 9 by 13-inch pan and bake for 7 minutes. Set aside and allow to cool. In a mixing bowl, beat together the cream cheese and 3/4 cup of sugar. Fold in 1 container of whipped topping, and spread over the cooled crust. Refrigerate until well chilled. In a small bowl, dissolve the gelatin in the boiling water, and allow to cool slightly. Add the strawberries and pineapple, and pour over the cream cheese mixture. After salad has set spread with 1 container of whipped topping. Refrigerate until serving time. (Dawn Vinson) • • •
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Simple (but Delicious) Ways to Add the Goodness of Strawberries to Your Diet By Maranda Russell All berries are full of healthy vitamins and minerals, but strawberries in particular have some potent antioxidants (plus they taste great!). In case you didn’t know, strawberries are an excellent source of fiber, calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium and vitamin C. Additionally, strawberries are low calorie (only about 50 calories for a cup), and they have been proven to have cancer-fighting properties! So how is a busy person to fit this superfood into their diet? There are lots of delicious options, some of them aren’t the most healthy (Strawberry Cheesecake, Strawberry Shortcake, and Strawberry pie), but there are plenty of other options if you want a tasty snack that won’t add inches to your waistline. Better yet, the other ways are proven favorites with kids, so you won’t even have to force them to eat something healthy! Here are a few easy ways to add strawberries to your diet-most don’t even require cooking: *One of the simplest ways to eat strawberries is as a snack. Instead of eating chips or candy, break out a carton of strawberries! You can make them taste even better by dipping them in Hershey’s syrup or light whipped cream. These toppings add a little bit of fat and extra sugar, but as long as you don’t drown the strawberries, it is still a fairly healthy snack overall. *Throw a handful into your favorite cereal - hot or cold. Many people already know that strawberries are delicious with corn flakes or Cheerios, but did you know that they are just as great in hot cereals like Cream of Wheat and oatmeal? *Make it into a parfait! This is by far one of my favorite ways to eat strawberries. Get a carton of vanilla yogurt (or any other flavor you prefer), and throw some fruit in. Bananas, berries, grapes, citrus fruit and melon can all be added to the parfait depending on your personal taste and what you have available. To top it all off, throw a little bit of granola into the mix. *Don’t be afraid to mix greens with your fruit. One of my favorite salads of all is one made with assorted greens, carrots, onions, garlic, strawberries, raisins and dried cranberries. Throw a little Italian dressing on top and you have a meal! The sweetness of the fruits blends in well, and highlights the taste of the onions and garlic in particular. Of course, since the salad is yours, feel free to take out whatever you don’t like and throw some other stuff in!
Troy Strawberry Festival By Aimee Plesa Every June, the city of Troy, Ohio pays homage to the bright, delicious, juicy strawberry. What began as a way for civic clubs to raise money for their organizations has blossomed into one of the area’s largest two day attractions. The 2011 festival marks the 35th anniversary of this tasty tradition and takes place on June 3rd, 4th and 5th. This year’s events include the Queen’s Pageant, Junior Golf Tournament, Big Wheel and Bed Races, food, crafts and much more. A complete schedule of events can be found online. The festival offers free parking and shuttle service from the following locations • Exit 69, WACO Airfield and Museum and Sherwood Shopping Center • Exit 74, Meijer and Sherwood Shopping Center • Exit 82, Duke City Park Visitors who plan on using GPS navigation to get to this event should use this address: 154 Staunton Road Troy, OH 45373. For more information, follow the Troy Strawberry Festival online at their website, Facebook or Twitter accounts.
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Guide to Spices, Herbs and Flavorings By Aimee Plesa Whoever said "Variety is the spice of life", must have been a cook. With so many flavorings close at hand, it can be difficult to choose which is the right one for a particular recipe. Here is a guide to the most commonly used seasonings, spices and flavorings. Allspice-pungent and fragrant with a warm, sweet flavor. Taste reminds many people of a mix of cinnamon, cloves and nutmeg. Use in both sweet and savory recipes. Can be used as a substitute for cloves. Anise-smells and tastes like black licorice. Popular in baked goods and candy recipes. Barbeque Seasoning-zesty blend of spices that bring a smoky flavor to foods. Basil-imparts a sweet, herby taste. Widely used in Italian dishes and commonly paired with tomatoes. Bay Leaf-Pungent with a somewhat sharp, bitter taste. Used mainly in soups, stews and vegetable dishes. Cajun Seasoning-traditionally contains white, black and red peppers along with onion, salt and garlic. Popular in grilled meat dishes. Caraway-used in a lot of German cuisine such as rye bread, sauerkraut, sausage and cabbage based recipes. Has a very distinct sweet and tangy flavor. Cardamom-bears a strong sweet, pungent taste. Used in breads, to flavor coffee and in curry powders. Cayenne Pepper-nearly odorless but has a very hot flavor. Used in Mexican and Italian dishes. Celery Seed-warm, slightly bitter taste. Used when a celery flavor is desired without the "crunch". Chervil-flavor similar to parsley. Use with other herbs to enhance their flavors. Chili Powder-hot, peppery flavor and smell. Used in soups, stews and marinades. Chives-mild oniony flavor. Very popular in egg and potato recipes. Cilantro-flavor is a mix of parsley and citrus. Should be crushed before it is used. Popular in Asian and Mexican cuisine. Cinnamon-spicy-sweet flavor. Mainly used in breads, desserts and beverages. Cloves-strong pungent flavor that is sweet. Used in baked goods, desserts, beverages. Coriander-mild flavor similar to sage and lemon blended. Used in gin, sausage and curry. Cumin-pungent, spicy, slightly bitter. Used extensively in Indian and Mexican recipes.
Curry Powder-fragrant blend of up to 20 spices. Flavor varies from mild to hot. Very popular in Indian and Asian dishes. Dill Weed-used in pickling recipes and popular in German, Russian and Scandinavian dishes. Has a clean pungent flavor similar to caraway. Fennel-mild licorice-like flavor. Used in sausage making, poultry dishes and baked goods. Five Spice Powder-usually includes cinnamon, anise, fennel, black pepper and cloves. Popular in Chinese foods Garlic-distinct pungent flavor. Very popular in Asian and Italian cooking. Ginger-sweet-hot flavor with a tangy aroma. Both flavor and scent are distinct. Used in baking, beverages and Asian dishes. Herbes de Provence-hails from the south of France. Usually contains basil, fennel, lavender, marjoram, rosemary, sage and thyme. Popular in stuffings, cream sauces and soups. Horseradish-hot and pungent. Very distinct. Popular on roast beef and in condiments. Italian Seasoning-combination of basil, oregano, rosemary and thyme. Lemon Extract-provides a bright, bold citrus flavor. Popular in baking and candy making recipes. Lemon Pepper-blend of salt, black pepper and dried lemon peel. Popular in vegetable and chicken dishes. Marjoram-similar to oregano but sweeter and milder. Very popular in vegetable recipes and Mediterranean cuisine. Mint-strong sweet taste with a smooth, cool aftertaste. Popular in drinks, marinades and with lamb. Mustard Seed-hot spicy flavor. Enhances the flavor of meats. May be used in pickling recipes. Nutmeg-slightly sweet and spicy. Used extensively in baked goods, desserts and white sauces. Onion-pungent with a sharp bite. When cooked, the bite is replaced with a rich sweetness. Onions can be used in almost all recipes with the exception of sweets. Orange Extract-provide a fresh, sweet burst to baked goods and desserts. Also popular in sauces and marinades. Oregano-robust flavor. Very popular in pizza and pasta recipes. Paprika-pungent-can be either sweet or hot. Popular in vegetable, egg and chicken dishes. Parsley-mild and fresh tasting. Used in recipes and on the side as a garnish. Popular in soups, meats and vegetable recipes. Pepper-pungent and warm. White pepper is milder in flavor than black. Also available in pink and green varieties. Used in savory recipes. Poppy Seeds-slightly nutty aroma and taste. Very popular in European and Mediterranean baked goods. Rosemary-a bold, pinelike flavor. Enjoyed in fish and pork recipes and in herb breads. Saffron-spicy, pungent, bitter flavor. Used widely in Indian cuisine. A little goes a long way.
Sage-subtly musty-minty flavor. Used to season poultry, pork and stuffings. Sesame Seed-mild nut-like flavor. Popular in cookie doughs, yeast breads and pie crusts. Tarragon-aromatic, licorice-like flavor. Very popular in French recipes. Excellent with poultry, fish and grilled meats. Thyme-slightly minty, slightly lemony. Works well with chicken, vegetables and sauces. Turmeric-necessary ingredient of curry powder. Possesses a pungent, bitter flavor. Vanilla-sweet, woody, perfumey scent and flavor. Very popular in baking and dessert making.
Spice and Seasoning Trivia So, you think you know your spices and herbs? You might be surprised by what you learn about your favorite flavorings with this special trivia section. Tumeric gives both curry powder and mustard their deep yellow color • Annatto has been used in some cultures to treat headaches, cancer, diabetes, inflammation, jaundice and epilepsy • Ginger can be used to calm an upset stomach, curb morning sickness and stimulate the appetite • Cinnamon can also work to fend off nausea • Chili powder contains capsacin, which is used to reduce pain, most commonly in the form of skin creams. It also has blood thinning and anti-oxidant properties. • Large amounts of saffron can be bad for the kidneys and nervous system • Cayenne pepper is a good source of vitamin A, beta carotene and lutein • Coriander is a natural diuretic and aids in digestion • Curry powder is made up of a blend of tumeric, cardamom, coriander, cumin, fenugreek, cinnamon and cayenne • Lavender oil rubbed into the temples can help alleviate migraine headaches • Garlic and sesame seeds are two of the oldest food seasonings used in modern cooking • Vanilla beans are the fruit of the vanilla planifolia, an orchid • There are five types of peppercorns-black, green, red, pink and white-each has its own unique flavor and characteristics • If your recipe calls for lemon grass and you don’t have any, use a blend of 2/3 lemon zest to 1/3 ginger root • Horseradish is a member of the mustard family • Most wasabi sold in the United States does not contain any of the plant. It is a mixture of horseradish and other ingredients, such as mustard and starch • Clove oil can help ease a toothache • Basil, cilantro, garlic and onions can all help lower cholesterol • Coriander and cilantro come from the same plant • There are over 600 varieties of mint, including peppermint, spearmint, lemon mint and basil mint • One pound of poppy seeds contains close to one million individual seeds. •
Some Uncommon Kitchen Uses for Baking Soda By Maranda Russell Most people don’t realize that they have a treasure trove of magical elixirs hiding in their kitchen cabinets. With baking soda, a little bit of water and a few other typical kitchen supplies, you can achieve things you may have never imagined. Here are just a few of the little known wonders that baking soda could do in your kitchen! * Do you have stains on your Formica countertops or other plastic laminate surfaces? Did you know that one of the most powerful stain removers in this case is baking soda and lemon juice? Just leave a little lemon juice on the stain for about a half hour, then sprinkle some baking soda on top. Scrub a little, rinse and dry. Your counters should be sparkling clean once again! * If you have cuts in your kitchen countertops, you can make them seem to fade away by cleaning them out with a paste mixture of baking soda and water. * Cleaning your cutting boards with baking soda and vinegar will not only remove odors caused by garlic, onions and other foods, but will also keep them free from contamination. * Have a clogged drain? You can clean it out without using harmful chemicals by simply pouring one cup of baking soda down the drain, followed by a cup of hot vinegar (just heat the vinegar in your microwave). If necessary, rinse and repeat. * Hate those musty smells you get from your dishwasher after being away on vacation? Next time sprinkle some baking soda inside the dishwasher and leave the machine open just a crack while you are away. * Is your glassware looking dull? Make your good crystal really shine once again by soaking it in a mixture of baking soda and warm water. * Cleaning baby bottles with baking soda is a good alternative to cleaning with regular soap. This way you don’t have to worry about your baby accidentally ingesting some leftover soap residue. * Did you burn the bottom of your favorite pan? Remove the burn marks by bringing about two inches of water to a boil in the pan, then turn off the heat, add ½ cup baking soda and leave the pan to soak overnight. In the morning, you should be able to clean the pan off easily. Did you find any of the above tips helpful? If so, you might want to check out the book, ‘Baking Soda, Over 500 Fabulous, Fun and Frugal Uses You’ve Probably Never Thought of’ by Vicki Lansky. This book is full of wonderful tips for every area of your life, and I can guarantee that most of them you have probably never heard before! This book can be purchased locally at Barnes and Noble in Beavercreek or Miami Township, Books & Company in Beavercreek or Kettering, Borders in the Dayton Mall or possible at Half Price Books in Miami Township. It may also be found online at Amazon.com, EBay and Half.com.
KOLLEGE KITCHEN Fire It Up: The Most Wonderful Time of the Year By Brett Johnson Generally, the most wonderful time of the year is December. But do not be fooled by this because the most wonderful time of year, in reality, is May. Particularly the end of May. From the 27th to the 31st. Obviously we have our beloved Memorial Day weekend but we also have my favorite national holiday. You guessed itâ€Ś.my birthday. Generally when I was growing up, I was on club soccer teams and there was the inevitable Memorial Day tournament somewhere in East Bufu. This made it hard for me to enjoy my own birth-weekend (and yes, to reclaim my lost birthdays over the years, I have now stretched my birthday celebrations to be over the whole weekend). But now that I am older and not on a traveling club team anymore, this allows me to relax on my birth-weekend and enjoy it. Going along with the coming of May and the arrival of summer, a seasonal cooking form that invites amateurs and masters alike is heralded in. Grilling. There is no better way to enjoy a family get-together or cool evening out on the porch than by lighting up your grill and throwing a big hunk of dead animal over the heat. Grilling is one of the most exciting processes for me as a cook because there are so many things one can do with a few briquettes and some wood chips. It is at this point in the article that I need to make my disclaimer. I am not, in any way, a master at grilling, barbecuing, etc. and nor do I claim to be. Although my recipes are amazing, if I do say so myself, I am still learning a lot about this subject and each year I try my hand at something new. Enough with the nonsensical talking, onto some delicious recipes. This first one that I have is for ribs. I like to use pork loin or baby back ribs. Beef ribs are ok, but I think that they give a weird texture and I'm not too keen on the flavors. To prepare the pork ribs, you have to turn them over so they are bending up and peel off the film attached to the bottom of the bones. It should all come off in one piece. It is a little tough to muscle with but the end result is definitely worth it! Once the film is off, it is best to trim off any excess fat that could make it difficult to enjoy. Unless the fat is something you enjoy; And in that case, have yourself a ball with it. Once it's all prepped and ready, we can start the tasty part. Cut the racks in halves or thirds. The easiest way to do this next part is to use a disposable foil tray big enough to fit all the ribs in one even layer. Before you put the ribs in the tray, make a layer of ice cubes underneath the ribs and then put the ribs on top. The ice in the tray will steam the meat and do the actual cooking process. By the time the ribs hit the grill, they will have already been cooked and ready to eat. But the flavor will not be at its maximum potential if you go that route. Rewind a bit. Before the ribs hit the oven, douse them in zesty Italian dressing. It's an interesting choice of flavor but it'll fit the profile perfectly.
Once the oven is preheated to 250, bake the ribs for at least 6 hours. Clearly this a dish that needs some planning. After 6 hours in the oven, take them out and brush Sweet Baby Ray's barbecue sauce on both sides of the ribs. Now for some insight information. The key for ribs and getting them a little sticky is to have a high-sugar sauce to go on them. The sugar will caramelize and create the "burnt" parts. Burnt in this sense does not mean a literal burn; it means yummy goodness! There are other sauces that could be used but I haven't found one with the sugar content on SBR. Only grill the ribs for 10 or 15 minutes, flipping every once in a while. Watch them carefully because once they start to burn, it's a slippery slope and your yummy hunks of meat will turn into not so yummy hunks of charcoal. This is a recipe I have used to win head-to-head competitions between friends. It is a fool-proof way to impress family and friends when you have them over. Another aspect of BBQ that is a highly debated subject is the rub mixture. Some are sugar based, others are paprika or salt based. (Base meaning the main ingredient being used.) An interesting one that I have found is one off of Food Network.com. This one will be somewhat sweet and have a lot of subtle notes to it. I have not used it so I cannot vouch but I would recommend it based on its ingredient list. Note: This recipe will act as a test for your spice pantry list. A lot of these spices are basics and ones that every cook should have. If you do not have some or most of these, you'd better head to the grocery rather soon and stock up. There are some other topics that make BBQ such a unique cooking genre. A lot of "masters" would have their say as to which is the way to go on subjects like: gas vs charcoal, cedar vs maple smoke, etc. I have found that for the beginning cook who doesn't have the opportunity to own both a gas and charcoal grill for themselves, they must use whatever is available. I have a gas grill. My girlfriend's family owns a charcoal grill. Both do the job and do it well. The main difference is the flavor that is imparted on the food while cooking. Charcoal will give the meat a reddish hue and give a deep smoky flavor to it. Gas will not impart such flavors but it will cook it evenly and quickly. It is easier to control temperature and heat zones with a gas grill. Quick Note: To explain a heat zone, it is easiest just to tell you how I make mine. When I am cooking steaks and I have burners that go parallel to the grates (that is, front to back) I will only
either turn on the very front and very back burners or both the inside burners but not all at the same time. This all depends on how many burners your grill has. Of course, the idea is that not all burners are on. This will allow you to cook evenly by not having to keep a piece of meat over direct heat the entire time. Think of a chicken breast, for example. A chicken breast will have taper down in size. One side is noticeably thicker than the other. In this case, you will put the thicker side closer to the direct heat and let the smaller end cook off of indirect heat. When you flip, do not rotate. You will flip the breast over so that the thick part is still closer to the direct heat. As far as smoke and wood chips go, I have had difficulty in the past dealing with these. They involve soaking them in water and placing them on the half of the charcoal grill that doesn't have briquettes. It takes some unique setups. Now, some of my readers will think I'm stupid for not being able to do such a simple setup; the thing is, I haven't been able to cook enough with wood chips to get it down to a science. The easiest way to cook with wood and impart a smokey flavor is to buy untreated cedar or maple planks from the hardware store and soak them in water before cooking. (Anytime you will use a wooden convoy to cook your food, you should soak them in water so they do not catch fire while cooking.) To cook the food with the planks, just set the food on top of the wood while it cooks, the heat will heat up the wood which will cook the meat on top. Easy peasy. I could go into marinades and other things that are involved with this entire subject but I think I've bored you enough so far (You aren't supposed to agree with me!!!!). I will go into marinades in a different article. Alas, while I was writing this entire article for you, my dear readers, I forgot that I will not be able to do what I have been preaching of this year. I have to be out of town on that weekend for a family gathering. (Thanks Jill for graduating high school and raining on my parade!!!) So, this falls on you to fire up that grill of yours and throw a large hunk of dead animal on there in my honor. It is the least you could do for me. As a result, I would love to hear what you marinated, grilled, barbecued, sauteed and/or charred. Send me an email with your secret recipes and tips that you have found useful in your endeavors. And do not worry, I will not be sharing any of those secret rub mix recipes that I hope to receive. For any comments, questions, concerns and/or constructive criticism relating to this article or others, whether they be past, present or future, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Cheers!
Kollege Kitchen Soak It Up by Brett Johnson In another article I have written for this issue, I talked about grilling and [almost] everything that goes along with that. At the end, I talked about marinades and how they are their own article. Well, true to my word, here you go folks. The important thing to remember about marinades is, in fact, the entire point of a marinade. It is to "inject" the meat, or vegetables in some cases, with as much flavor as possible before you move on to the cooking process. Another thing about marinating is that there are no hard and fast rules to follow. It is about what you think will taste good with your food. However, there are guidelines that I adhere to when I am pouring ingredients into a plastic bag. Here are some things to keep in mind. The key point of this process is to impart flavor, so why would you use a flavorless carrier to try and impart flavor?!? It doesn't make sense. With that being said, water is out of the question. Use oil. Vegetable, Extra Virgin, Canola, White Truffle, Peppermint. I don't care what kind of oil you use, just do not use water. That is not to say that I will not put in a tablespoon or two of water just to help with the fluidity; but my main ingredient is not water. When putting the liquid in the plastic bag you are going to use to marinade, do not fill it with liquid. You don't need your meat to be swimming in flavor. As delicious as that may sound, at some point, too much just becomes a waste. I would say that for a T-Bone steak, 3 Tablespoons of oil is enough to do the job. Before I get into the herbs note that using fresh herbs will really intensify the flavors (which is a good thing) and have a lot more impact than dry herbs. The crucial thing about flavor at this point is flavor profile. I could spend all day telling you about the complements, substitutes, and general outline of flavor profiles but I will just cover some basics for right now: -When marinating chicken, using thyme and rosemary will work well. Chicken doesn't have a distinct flavor on its own so heavy herbs such as these will do well with this meat. -When marinating beef, use rosemary, coriander and oregano. Beef has a very distinct flavor and texture that needs earthy notes to complement it. -When marinating lamb (YUM!!!), I use a lot of Indian spices; black peppercorns, cumin, coriander, garam marsala, cinnamon, ginger and thyme. You certainly do not need all of these but they all will work well with one another. -When marinating pork, use a lot of thyme and rosemary. Pork is in between beef and chicken on the flavor scale. But when you use a lot of these herbs, it actually brings out the pork flavor and takes it to the front on the palate.
There are tons and tons and tons of pre-made herb mixes that you can use and there are sauces galore that you can baste the meat in. But I am a simple guy and really enjoy making my own flavors. The cool thing about marinades are that it is really up to your taste buds as to what
to put in the marinating bag. I have used beer, wine, rum, coffee, syrup, Worcestershire sauce, red wine vinegar, jam/jelly, mustard, ketchup, soy sauce, sugar, chocolate, yogurt, salsa, salad dressing, etc. Needless to say, I have used just about every pantry item I own to put in my marinade, some worked and some didn't. But it is up to you to try things out. Don't be afraid to put pineapple juice in your pork marinade or yogurt with your lamb or apple wine with your chicken. When it comes down to it, marinade exploration is all up to you and what you think tastes good (Of course the people you are forcing to eat this stuff might have an opinion.) Go out and try your own blends and see what you come up with. Most of it should be in your pantry anyways! For any comments, questions, concerns and/or constructive criticism relating to this article or others, whether they be past or future, please email me at email@example.com. Cheers!
QUICK TIP! Your favorite Italian dressing makes a fast, easy and delicious marinade.
Kollege Kitchen Stock Up by Brett Johnson I am writing today out of frustration and necessity. I am frustrated with myself for the fact that I have nothing in this apartment to eat. With that being said, I have a stocked pantry that could last me for three weeks. They say a good pantry will last someone two months. But I am a college student so I get a break form that requirement. Lately, I have been bored with my selections and am having to come up with new recipes to start using my items. I'm sure many of you have been in this situation beforeâ€Ś.standing in front of the fridge or cabinet staring into the abyss of mindless boring food that sits there. In order to free myself from torture, I had to come up with recipes to start using my pantry items until I could afford more groceries. This is all just a list of recipes and ways to mix items together. Ingredient list: canned pineapples, rice, pork. Yeah, you can see where this is going. It's a fairly simple recipe I first made for my girlfriend and we have loved it ever since. You cook the rice (whether instant or basmati) and while that is going, dice up some pork tenderloins and cook them in the pineapple juice. I add some other spices at this point such as blackening seasoning, cayenne and sriracha (the best chili sauce in the world and a must have in your kitchen!!) Your roommates or housemates will hate you at this point unless you have proper ventilation. We do not in our apartment so I pretty much napalmed our lungs. Oops. When the pork is done cooking, stir in the cooked rice and pineapples from the can. Fry them together for a bit and serve. It is delicious Hawaiian Fried Pork. Ingredient list: Rice and Campbell's soup. The soup can be any kind or flavor that you like or have. They just about all work well. The idea here is pretty simple. Pour heated Campbell's soup over cooked rice. I added in some Cilantro chutney that I had leftover from Indian food night a while back and it made for a tasty zing.
The next is an actually recipe that my Grandma gave me. She made it for Thanksgiving last year and I fell in love at first bite. By the way, I'm sorry to the rest of my family who did not get to try it. It was the best dessert appetizer I've ever had and I can tell you that not a single piece was eaten unappreciatively :) You will need: 3 cups flour 2 cups sugar 1 teaspoon baking soda 1 teaspoon cinnamon 1 teaspoon salt 20 oz frozen strawberries 1 cup oil 4 eggs Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour 2 loaf pans. Combine dry ingredients; mix well. Mix liquid ingredients together. Stir into dry ingredients with a spoon. Pour mixture into pans and bake for 1 hour, until toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. (That is just a term in baking where you stick a toothpick in the center of a baked good to see for doneness. If it comes out clean, it is fully cooked. If it comes out not-clean (I'm not sure what other term to use there), then it needs to continue cooking.) Ingredient list: Peanut butter, boxed pasta, sriracha, frozen shrimp, peanuts, craisins, red wine vinegar, orange juice, lime juice and oil. Combine the peanut butter, red wine vinegar, orange juice, lime juice and oil until it is a smooth consistency. Cook the pasta per the directions on the box. Cook the shrimp in a skillet. When that is nearing the end of cooking, pour the finished pasta into the skillet and pour the sauce over the mixture. Toss in some peanuts, craisins and a few drops of chili sauce. This makes for the best Thai-style peanut shrimp. Ingredient list: Chicken flavored ramen, leftover chicken breast or rotisserie chicken. I have a feeling that these last two are going to be too straight-forward. Make the ramen as directed and put in pieces of chicken to make it a little heartier. Other things you can do to spice this up are add Beau Monde seasoning (salt, onion, celery seed), add carrots, celery and onion to it (also known as mirepoix.) Another one that I have not tried but would be willing to try is to make a stir-fry out of the ramen and above ingredients and an egg. This sort of mixture is common at Mongolian grills and Stir-fry stands in college dining halls. Ingredient list: Flour tortilla or bagel, pasta sauce, cheese, pepperoni. I remember as a kid during the summers, I would make this but with bagels. I'm sure this recipe is nothing new to some of you and will be rather eye-opening to others of you. I almost don't know how to write this recipe out because it seems so common sense. Put the sauce on the tortilla or bagel, sprinkle cheese on top and top with pepperonis. I would either bake this or microwave it until the cheese is melted. It is a good way to make a quick snack or possibly even meal if you need it to be. For any comments, questions, concerns and/or constructive criticism relating to this article or others, whether they be past or future, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Cheers!
Five Ways To Save At The Grocery By Aimee Plesa With the ever increasing price of, well, just about everything, saving money is at the front and center of most everyone’s minds right now. Saving money at the grocery doesn’t necessarily mean you have to lose out on flavor or the items you love. It simply means using some savvy techniques to stretch your all important dollars. It can be time consuming and it may require you to think outside of the box, but the money saved is more than worth it! Here are five of my favorite tips for saving money at the grocery. •
Comparison Shop. Sometimes a trip to your favorite grocery store costs you money, even if it is just around the corner. What is familiar-or close-isn’t always wallet friendly. For example, I live in Springboro and the Springboro IGA is my closest grocery. IGA currently has Domino sugar on sale, five pounds for $2.49 while Kroger (my next closest store) has their store brand sugar on sale four pounds for $1.97. Is there a difference between the two brands? Not really. Granulated sugar is granulated sugar and the price works out to 49 cents a pound in both cases. However, if you are fortunate enough to have a coupon for the Domino brand, it will be cheaper to buy sugar at IGA. In this case, the closer store is indeed cheaper, but that is not always the case. Coupons, Coupons, Coupons. There is a reason why television shows such as “Extreme Couponing” and websites such as “The Coupon Game” are becoming so popular. A few short years ago, admitting you clipped and used coupons made you a “cheapskate”. Today, it means you are a savvy shopper. What changed? The prices we pay during checkout. Coupons are practically everywhere-there’s no reason not to use them. I have a 3 ring binder that I keep my collection of cashier annoyers in (those of you who regularly coupon know what I’m talking about!) and I take it with me whenever I go shopping. It contains my shopper cards, coupons, rebates and the coupon policies of the stores I shop at. Soon, it will also contain a notebook with the prices of my pantry staples in it and what the items cost at each store. Setting up such an elaborate system took me a couple of weeks, but it has certainly paid off. I walk out of the grocery saving at a bare minimum of 35% each time I shop. Some shoppers pay a mere 10% of their bill’s original total! Think Outside The Box. Or in this case, think outside the grocery store. During the summer months, it will probably be easier on your budget to buy locally grown fruits and veggies at your local farmer’s market. Even better, grow your own! Investing in a vacuum sealer or canning supplies can help you enjoy your bountiful harvest all year long. Another way to think outside the box is to shop at restaurant supply chains, such as GFS, for items you regularly use a lot of. Another thing to consider is bartering. If you’re handy with a set
(cont) of power tools and your neighbor bakes up a storm, offer to trade household repairs for birthday cakes. It’s a win-win situation for you both! Cook Your Own Meals. This one may seem obvious, but you would be surprised how many people snub their noses at cooking for the convenience of eating out or microwaving prepared meals. Not only is it cheaper, it is also healthier to make your own meal. You have complete control over what your family eats when you cook at home. If you have a hectic schedule, invest in a slow cooker. You can use it to make everything from entrees to desserts. I have three and they all get used religiously. Plan For Leftovers. Often, it is only a little more expensive to double a batch of your next dinner, double up and plan your menu around the leftovers. Leftover chili can be used to make scrumptious nachos. Fried chicken can be repurposed in many different ways-chicken salad sandwiches, pot pies, chicken and dumplings. Use your leftover roast and make hash. You are only limited by your imagination and your family’s taste buds.
DRUNKEN POT ROAST 4-5 pound roast bottle of dark beer 1/2 cup ketchup 1/4 cup steak sauce 1/4 cup brown sugar, packed 2 small white or yellow onions, sliced thinly • salt and pepper to taste Directions Place roast in crock. Whisk together remaining ingredients and pour over top of roast. Cover and cook on high for 4-5 hours or on low for 8-10. • • • • • •
Cook's Notes If you wish to serve your roast with gravy, pour jous into a small saucepan. Skim fat from liquid and bring too a boil. Combine 1/4 cup flour with 1/4 cup cold water. When mixture is smooth, stir into saucepan. Bring to a boil and cook until desired thickness.
HEAVENLY LEFTOVER HASH leftover drunken pot roast, cut into small dice • boiled potatoes, but into small dice • Olive oil • Salt and pepper, to taste Directions Heat oil in a skillet. When hot, but not smoking, add roast and potatoes and cook until potatoes are golden and meat is heated through. Season with salt and pepper as desired. •
EASY ROAST BEEF SANDWICHES • leftover drunken pot roast, shredded • Sandwich bun • Slice cheddar cheese • Horseradish sauce • Lettuce, tomato, onion to garnish as desired Directions Heat meat and place on bottom half of bun. Top with a slice of cheddar cheese and veggies as desired. Spread horseradish sauce on top half of bun and place on top of veggies.
Coupons 101101-How to Talk the Coupon Talk By Aimee Plesa Coupons are just one of a great many facets that make up a frugal lifestyle. If you are a newcomer to the world of couponing and rebates, understanding the terms of some offers can be confusing. Here are some of the most common terms you will encounter: • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •
Blinkies Coupon dispensers with blinking lights. These are placed throughout grocery and drug stores with the items the coupons are to be used for. BOGO or B1G1 Buy 1 get 1 free. Expect the lower priced item to be your free one. You may also see B2G1 or other number combinations. Cat or Catalina A coupon that prints out at the same time as your cash register receipt but from a separate machine. Cents Off A coupon for a specified amount of money, for example, save 50 cents off 1 Coupon Codes or Online Codes or Promotional Codes A code you enter while completing an online purchase that acts as a coupon. CRT A coupon that is printed on the back of your cash register tape. Double Coupon (sometimes Triple Coupon) The redeeming store will double the face value of the coupon, usually up to $1.00 off. ECB or Extra Care Bucks CVS rewards program. ESR or Easy Saver Rebates Walgreens rebate program. Face Value The amount of money a coupon is worth (35 cents, $1.50, etc). FAR Free after rebate Free Item Coupon A coupon redeemable for a specified item. IPC or Internet Printable Coupon A coupon that you can print from the internet. Some stores will not accept these. LTO Limited time offer MFR or Manufacturer coupon A coupon that is offered from the company who makes the product. MIR or Mail In Rebate A mail in offer where you send in a completed form, register tape and proof of purchase to receive a check for cash back. NED No expiration date OYNO On your next order. P&G or Proctor & Gamble Sunday coupon insert. Peelies Peel off coupons. These are found on the package of the item they are redeemable for. Some are cents off coupons while others may require an additional purchase to redeem. POP or Proof of Purchase Proof an item was purchased, located physically on the product. Qualifier The items needed to complete a rebate offer. RC or Rain Check A guarantee to a customer that a sold out item will be available at a later date for the sale price. RP or Red Plum Sunday coupon insert. SASE Self addressed stamped envelope. SS or Smart Source Sunday coupon insert. Stacking Using a store and a manufacturer's coupon on one item Store Coupon A coupon valid at a specific store. Tear Pad A pad of tear off rebate forms or coupons Valassis Sunday coupon insert. WSL While supplies last
What the Greek?!? By Heather Bryant I am a yogurt lover and have tried most of the brands and flavors available. Even with all of that yogurt eating experience, when I started noticing Greek yogurt I became intrigued. I started to research what the difference was between what we Americans call yogurt and then what the Greeks call yogurt. One of the major differences that I have found is that the Greek yogurt has twice as much protein. Another difference is that Greek yogurt has the whey (the clear liquid on top) removed making their yogurt more acidic while here in America the makers of yogurt adds sweeteners to cover this taste. Greek yogurt also takes longer to make because they do not use the same commercial ways of making yogurt that we do. Therefore, the finished product has a much tarter taste. There are also claims that eating Greek yogurt helps to speed up weight loss since this type of yogurt has extra protein. Protein takes longer to break down in your digestive system so you stay full longer, causing you to eat less. The best reason I personally have found to eat Greek yogurt is the fact that it contains less lactose than “regular” yogurt, which is a blessing for those with lactose intolerance issues. Some other great things that I found out about Greek yogurt is that is it typically gluten free*, safe for corn, nut and soy allergies* and some are even Kosher Certified. My search for Greek yogurt yielded seven varieties that I found between Kroger, Health Food Unlimited and other area grocery stores. The ones that I found and tried are Voskos, Chobani, Yoplait, Athenos, Oikos, Fage, and Dannon. There were as many differences in taste as there were in brands and flavors. The best I found by far was Chobani because there was real fruit in the bottom, was smooth rich and creamy almost like ice cream. Voskos uses an award winning recipe and has flavors like exotic fig, honey and vanilla bean. Oikos Greek is made by Stoneyfield and carries such flavors as chocolate and caramel. Fage, their best seller their plain, practically flew of off the grocer’s shelf! Athenos offers a rich, creamy texture. Yoplait offers a good variety of flavors, but the three different ones I tried I had a very tart taste that I found quite unpleasant. Dannon had the harshest taste of all the yogurts I sampled, no matter what flavor I tried. There are a few downsides to this entire Greek yogurt craze. Greek yogurt has a higher fat content and less calcium when compared to other yogurts. The other major sticking point is price, they are not cheap. My advice—eat Greek for the extra protein so you can enjoy the extra protein and opt for low/nonfat varieties so you can still indulge in a variety of flavors. Go Greek! *Yogurt by itself it a gluten free food and generally void of corn, nut and soy allergins. The addition of other ingredients, such as cookies, fruit, flavorings, etc can invalidate this claim. Always read ingredient lists to ensure the safeness of your food.
Going Gluten Free By Aimee Plesa If you have been diagnosed with Celiac Disease, you have most likely been told to completely eliminate wheat from your diet. The same may hold true for ADHD, autism, schizophrenia, chronic fatigue syndrome, migraines and infertility. The problem with wheat is that it contains gluten-a protein that is also found in many other grains. Even in patients who have not been diagnosed with Celiac, ingesting gluten can lead to gastro-intestinal disorders which can trigger anemia, malnutrition, weight loss, mood swings, lactose intolerance and a variety of other complaints. Avoiding gluten is difficult, but it is becoming easier as more food manufacturers create gluten free products. Be sure to purchase foods labeled "gluten free" or bear the gluten free logo. Being "wheat free" just isn't good enough. Many other grains contain gluten. Here is a list of safe grains and a list of those to avoid: SAFE • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •
Rice Potato Corn Buckwheat Unprocessed oats Quinoa Tapioca Yam Teff Amaranth Arrowroot flour Gelatin Xanthan gum Guar gum Sorghum
AVOID • • • • • • • • • • • • • •
Wheat Rye Barley Spelt Processed oats Bulgar Farina Semolina Malt Couscous Durum Kamut Einkorn Farro
Packaged processed foods can be particularly bothersome to check. Even if a product seems to be safe, there may still be hidden gluten or the product was manufactured on equipment that also manufactures items containing gluten. Avoiding the following terms will help weed out gluten from your diet: stabilizer, starch, flavoring, emulsifier, hydrolyzed and plant protein.
Many gluten free products are readily available at your local grocery store. Dayton area Meijer, Marsh, Kroger and WalMart stores all have a selection of gluten free foods. Specialty gluten free items may be harder to find and will require a trip to Whole Foods, Trader Joe's, Health Foods Unlimited or Jungle Jim's. Area restaurants serving gluten free items include O'Charley's, Olive Garden, Skyline Chili and Steak & Shake. Sinfully Gluten Free in Miamisburg also offers gluten free pizzas, sandwiches and confections. Tina’s Sweet Treats in Franklin also offers a tempting variety fresh baked goods, including cookies, cakes and breads.
Did You Know??? Many people mistakenly think that in order for a food to be gluten free, those words must explicitly be stated on a label or the product’s packaging. This simply is not true. The following items may not be labeled as such, but they are indeed gluten free! Raw Veggies • Artichokes • Arugula • Asparagus • Avocado • Beans • Beets • Broccoli • Brussels sprouts • Cauliflower • Cabbage • Carrots • Celery • Corn • Cucumber • Eggplant • Garlic • Green beans • Kale • Lettuce • Mushrooms • Okra • Onions • Parsley • Peas • Peppers • Potatoes • Pumpkin • Radish • Spinach • Squash
• • •
Sweet potatoes Turnips Watercress
Raw Fruits • Acai • Apples • Apricot • Bananas • Blackberries • Blueberries • Cantaloupe • Carobs • Cherry • Cranberries • Currants • Dates • Figs • Grapes • Guavas • Honeydew melons • Kiwis • Kumquat • Lemons • Limes • Mandarin • Mangoes • Oranges • Papaya • Passion fruits • Peaches
• • • • • • • • • •
Pears Pineapples Plantains Plums Persimmons Quince Raspberries Strawberries Tamarind Tangerines Watermelons
• • • •
Cheese (except for blue cheese) Eggs Milk Yogurt (plain, unflavored)
Mixes • 1-2-3 Gluten-Free • Authentic Foods • Barkat • • Cause You're Special Raw Meats • Chebe • Beef • Cravings Place • Buffalo • Deboles • Chicken • Don Pancho • Duck • Dr. Schar • Goat • Ener-G • Goose • Glutano • Lamb • Gluten-Free • Pork Pantry • Rabbit • Glutino • Turkey • La Tortilla • Quail Factory • Veal • Pamela's • Venison • Perky's Natural Foods Dairy • Butter (check • Rustic Crust • Yummy Earth additives)
Gluten Free Living By Heather Bryant When I became a nurse in 2003, we were not taught about gluten free diets and who they help. I have since been taught by many, including parents of children diagnosed with autism and attention deficit hyperactivity as well as those with celiac disease and food allergies what gluten can do. Recently I spoke to Simer at Health Foods Unlimited about gluten free products. I was amazed on just how far this diet has come since its early days and how much the foods have improved, not only in taste but also in texture. Having to be gluten free means that a person cannot tolerate gluten, which is a protein found in many grains. It can cause digestive issues that present as other disorders/diseases. The lining of the intestines become damaged when nutrients are not absorbed properly. This is the only medically approved diet for those with celiac disease and wheat allergies. It has also been shown to help behaviors in those with autism and ADHD. It can be found in foods such as wheat, kamut, spelt, barley, rye, malts and tricate. It is also known to be in flavorings, food stabilizers/thickening agents as well as dextrin in ice cream and ketchup. Going gluten free excludes most bread, pasta, gravies, custards, canned soups as well as many sauces and most convenience foods. There is a brewing controversy as to whether oats are safe or if they are cross contaminated with gluten in the milling process. During my research, I have found that gluten is in everyday non foods items, such as medications and the glue on envelopes. It may also be found in lip gloss and lip balm. The Codex Alimentarius is the standards for gluten free labeling across the world. No country has the same amount of gluten being safe and this codex does not apply to those foods that are naturally gluten free. Research has found that 0.002% to 0.02% (between 20 and 200 parts per million) to be safe amounts in food. The FDA (food and drug administration) has classified gluten as â€œgenerally safe to eatâ€? or GS foods and leaves the labeling of gluten free foods up to the manufactures to guarantee it. Saying this, it is best to either check books or online for content of gluten in foods that are in question. With all of the exclusions of a gluten free diet, what is safe to eat? I found that corn, potatoes, rice, and tapioca (from cassava) are all safe. Also, amaranth, arrowroot, millet, montina, lupin, quinoa, sorghum, taro, teff, chia seed, yam, soy bean, nut flour, pure buckwheat and graham are all naturally gluten free. Many of these items can be found on Health Foods Unlimited store shelves as well as in their freezer section. Gluten free foods abound, from cookies to pretzels, muffins to cereals, pasta and pizza even chicken and turkey nuggets as well as breads and yogurt! In this journey I will explore the many recipes as well as the different drinks that are gluten free. Please join with me and find out what is to come in future issues!
Kooking With Kaden By: Dawn Vinson Teaching a child to cook is one of the best ways to teach them how to eat healthier, measure ingredients, cut vegetables and how to time when you bake. Though most of this comes as the child gets older; children as young as two can help in the kitchen by pouring ingredients into bowls or by helping mix batter or cookie dough. As your child gets older, cooking with them is also a great way to teach about balancing a budget and shopping. The adventures Kaden and I have in the kitchen are becoming more complicated as he advances towards the ripe old age of six. He wants to work the microwave and learn how to “cook” that way. He also wants to help move food items in and out of the oven, which I am still leery of and won’t let him. At least now I trust him to be in the kitchen when I do it instead of the other room as it has been for a long time. Busy weekends and an almost endless stream of activities mean sandwiches are a staple in our house. To round out the meal, we just add some carrot sticks, chips or fruit and have a quick bite to eat before the next activity is upon us. Growing up, my brother, sister and I were involved with a lot of activities. One of my favorite childhood memories is of my dad making subs in our kitchen us as we rushed from one sport to another. Sometimes we used lunch meat while other times it was smoked sausage. It didn’t matter what we used, Dad’s subs always turned out delicious. Now that Kaden is into a variety of activities, I like to make subs with him. These are some of the best times Kaden and I share in the kitchen. We pick out what we want on our subs, add some pizza sauce and cheese. Our toppings are usually for Kaden bologna and ham and for mommy-everything plus onions and mushrooms. Once our sandwiches are baked, they are better than ordering subs from our local pizza parlor. I don’t know if it is because our sandwiches are homemade or the fact that I got to spend another adventure in the kitchen with Kaden, but I swear these are the yummiest sandwiches in Dayton! Recipe: • 1 four inch sub bun • pizza sauce to taste • 1 slice of American cheese • 1 slice of mozzarella • 1 slice of bologna • 1 slice of ham • Onions, mushrooms, banana peppers, etc to garnish Directions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Assemble sandwiches and bake for 10 minutes
Take the time to be adventurous with this recipe. Use meatballs instead of luncheon meat or smoked sausage. Use roast beef to make a baked Philly cheese steak. The more imagination you use with your child, the better. A good point to teaching your child to cook is that they will make healthier decisions if they know how to make something for themselves. Until next time, keep having adventures in the kitchen with your kids.
Cooking with a ‘Tween By Heather and Britton Bryant My son, Britton, is a tween and loves to help me in the kitchen. When his granny found Paula Deen’s “My First Cookbook”, she grabbed it up for us. Mrs. Deen helps kids and adults with understanding kitchen/cooking safety, manners and a glossary that covers many of any questions you may have while cooking. This cookbook even has pictures with every recipe to show what you’ll need, as well as having it written out. This combination is great because it allowed Britton to look once and know what he needed to grab, which meant less work for me! It also teaches the kids to clean up after themselves if they want to cook with mom/dad again and how to gently wash, rinse and drain each item used. Of course what your child/’tween is allowed to use in the kitchen is up to you and their level of maturity. This book is broken down into nine chapters, a glossary, a section on good manners, as well as guides showing how to properly measure ingredients and setting a table. I think my favorite aspect of this cookbook is the story of Stone Soup, Paula Deen style. This is one of the all time great stories that teaches the moral that when you share with others everyone benefits! We looked through this book many times and before coming up with the first recipe to try. After debating, we decided to start our cooking adventures with egg salad sandwiches since the weather is beginning to turn nice and warm. An easy, cool meal was just what we needed. Things you’ll need: • Medium heavy pot with lid • Paper towels • Medium bowl • Potato masher (or fork) • Dry measuring cup • Measuring spoons • Rubber spatula • 6 eggs • 1/3 cup mayo • 1/2 teaspoon salt • 1/8 teaspoon pepper • 1 tablespoon sweet pickle relish (or 2 tablespoons of tartar sauce) • Bread • Cheese (optional)
Process: Britton gently placed the eggs in the pot and covered them with water. I turned the heat on to medium high and we let the water come to a full rolling boil. When it was done, I turned off the heat and Britton covered the pot with the lid. Then we let the eggs and water cool for 50 minutes. This helps the eggs to finish cooking as well as cool down! After the eggs had completed cooking and cooling, I drained the eggs. We cracked and peeled them then Britton washed the peeled eggs, ensuring that all the shell was gone from each egg. We then let them drain on the paper towels. He then put them into the bowl-since we do not have a potato masher - he used the fork to break everything up, being careful not to let them become mush. He added the mayo, salt, pepper, and two tablespoons of Frisch’s tartar sauce (instead of pickle relish) and mixed well. The end result was put onto bread with a slice of cheese and enjoyed greatly by both of us. Recipe yields approximately 4 sandwiches.
Though I am not sure where my mother bought this book, I have found that you can purchase it from: • WalMart • Barnes and Noble • PaulaDeen.com • Amazon.com • EBay/Half.com
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Offering a delicious variety of candy making and baking ingredients and supplies for the home kitchen.
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HAPPY HOUR Beer, Wine, Cocktails, Appetizers
EDITORIAL: A Letter to the Republican Majority in Ohio's Government By Timothy J. Gabelman, Wine Editor In 2010, the Republican Party gained control of the Ohio General Assembly and the Governor's Mansion with the election of John Kasich over incumbent Governor Ted Strickland. It would seem that with Republican majorities in both houses and the executive office, that business must be good for, well, businesses in Ohio: isn't the Republican Party the party of business and economic growth? The last time that the Republican Party controlled both houses of the Ohio General Assembly and had elected a governor was during the reign of Governor Bob Taft (1999-2007) and winery owners and winemakers remember that as a time when the wine business was not good in Ohio. It, perhaps, did not help that Governor Taft's wife, Hope, was heavily engaged with the organization Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD). Under Gov. Taft, no wineries were invited to participate in the Ohio Proud events at the Governor's Mansion. We therefore call on the new elected representatives of the General Assembly and on Governor Kasich to remember that the Ohio wine industry, according to Ohio's Department of Agriculture, contributes more than a half-billion dollars to the state's economy annually and employs more than 4,000 Ohio citizens. In the past decade, more that 65% of the current wineries in the state were founded and in the two year period between 2008 and 2010, the number of wineries in the state grew from 128 to 143; proving that even in uncertain economic times, some businesses can thrive. Under Gov. Strickland, June was declared â€œOhio Wine Monthâ€? in 2009 and in 2010 to recognize the outstanding accomplishments and contribution of the agricultural business of winemaking and we urge Gov. Kasich to keep this tradition alive. We further urge the elected representatives to the General Assembly to review Ohio's laws on shipping wines from out-of-state to Ohio consumers. Under the current law, only wineries who produce less than 150,000 gallons of wine are allowed to ship to customers in Ohio, regardless of whether their product is sold in retail stores. We ask that the General Assembly move to strike limitations on wine production from the law, allowing Ohio consumers access to wine shipments regardless of the size of the winery. We also urge the General Assembly to continue to recognize the achievements of winery owners and winemakers for their performance at the Ohio Wine Competition and to provide acknowledgment to outstanding accomplishment in that competition. Ohioans should be proud of the wine industry that flourishes in every corner of this great state and should be called upon to recognize the accomplishments of that same industry. Ohioans, though, should also be given the right to choose what products they can purchase have shipped to their homes from out-of-state. We call on the General Assembly and the Governor to recognize those rights and work to make them a reality.
Ohio Wineries-Dayton and surrounding areas • Vinoklet Winery 11069 Colerain Ave. Cincinnati, Ohio 45252 • Valley Vineyards 2276 E US 22 & 3 Morrow, Ohio 45152 • The Winery at Versailles 6572 St Rt 47, Versailles, OH 54380 • Moyer Vineyards, Winery & Restaurant 3859 US Route 52 Manchester, Ohio 45144 • Brandeberry Winery 5118 W Jackson Rd, Enon, OH 45323 • Brothers Drake Meadery 26 E 5th Ave, Columbus, OH 43201 • Buckeye Winery 25 North 3rd St, Newark, OH 43055 • Camelot Cellars Winery 958 N. High St., Columbus, OH 43201 • Eldchrist Winery 8189 State Rd 736, Plain City, OH 43064 • Hidden Lakes Winery 650 Winchester Pike, Canal Winchester, Ohio 43110 • Shamrock Vineyard CR 25, Rengert Road Waldo, Ohio 43356 • Slate Run Vineyard 1900 Winchester-Southern Road Canal Winchester, Ohio 43110 • Soine Vineyards 3510 Clark Shaw Road, Powell OH 43065 • The Winery at Otter Creek 5291 Bennington Chapel Rd, Johnstown, OH 43031
How To Celebrate National Wine Day By Aimee Plesa May 25th is National Wine Day, go forth and celebrate! How does one celebrate National Wine Day, you ask? Simply pick your favorite item from the following list and enjoy. Please remember to drink responsibly-designate a driver or call a cab to make it home safely. •
Purchase that new varietal* you've been dying to try. Some local shops that carry a nice selection include Middletown Fine Wine & Spirits in Middletown, Meijer , Heather's Coffee & Cafe in Springboro, Bella Vino in Springboro, Franklin Party Supply in Franklin, Dorothy Lane Market, Arrow Wine in Oakwood and Ele Cake Company in West Carrollton. Host a wine tasting event for you and your friends, complete with appetizers to nibble on. Go out for dinner and enjoy a glass (or two) while you dine. Delicious eateries to visit include Milano's, Olive Garden, Stefano's Italian Cafe in Middletown, Heather's Coffee & Cafe in Springboro and Bullwinkle's Top Hat Bistro in Miamisburg. Use wine in your cooking. Be sure to visit the Devour Dayton blog for the following recipes that incorporate wine: • Three cheese fondue • Beef in red wine gravy • Roast beef with cranberry red wine sauce • Scallops with white wine sauce • Champagne truffles,
*Please see page 30 of our March/April issue for a guide to wine varietals.
Louis M. Martini 2008 Sonoma County Cabernet Sauvignon ($14.99, Kroger)
By the Glass by Timothy Gabelman
There are, perhaps, a handful of instances where a wine under $20 impresses the likes of wine critic Robert Parker of The Wine Advocate: Louis M. Martini Winery's Cabernet is one such wine, it having garnered a 90-point accolade by that super-critic in its 2007 vintage. The winery was founded in 1933 in St. Helena by Louis M. Martini after having survived Prohibition by producing wine for religious purposes and kits for home winemakers. After the repeal, the winery relied on the Old World training from French and Italian sources who educated the family in wine-making. In 1977, the third-generation Martini assumed the duties of winemaker and continues in this position to this day, even though the winery is no longer owned by the family. On first pouring the wine, one is struck by the lovely color of the wine: neither inky or too thin, it strikes a perfect balance of, dare one say?, prettiness. This wine exhibits plum, raspberry, cassis, chocolate, and dusty notes in the nose without the overwhelming oak notes that are par for the course with a red wine in this price range. On the palate, the wine offers huge gobs of dark fruit with soft tannins and just a hint of oak aging. All in all, a well made and delightfully elegant wine that could be served if one did were unsure if others at the table enjoy wine. For it to truly shine, trying decanting this wine or allowing it to breath for several hours before serving. Serve with roasted chicken, pork, or BBQ ribs.
Chateau St. Jean 2009 Sonoma County Chardonnay ($15.99, Kroger)
By the Glass by Timothy Gabelman
In 1999, Chateau St. Jean became the first Sonoma winery to receive the prestigious “Wine of the Year” award from Wine Spectator magazine's annual “Top 100 Wineries” for their 1996 Cinq Cépages Cabernet Sauvignon. This top accolade from one of the top trade magazines should come as no surprise to anyone who has tasted one of this winery's products: since its founding in 1973, Chateau St. Jean has dedicated itself to producing world-class vineyard-designated wines. Chateau St. Jean's current winemaker, Margo Van Staaveren, has more than 30 years of experience directing the wine making process from the vineyard to the bottle. She started at St. Jean in the winery's laboratory after completing her degree at the University of California at Davis where she specialized in fermentation science. She worked her way to Assistant Winemaker and married her husband who was the Winemaker at that time; after he left she was promoted to Associate Winemaker. She was then promoted to the position of Chateau St. Jean's Winemaker after the interim director left and that is where she has remained ever since, directly controlling the blending of the Reserve line of wines and overseeing the lower tier bottling. This is a winery that has staked its reputation on the production of single vineyard wines and a reserve line, but that does not mean that its bottom-tier wines should suffer for it. At $16 per bottle, no one can, in good faith, call this wine “value oriented” but for a special occasion or as a gift, this is a wine that should offer the same quality that its premium and ultra-premium cousins under the Chateau St. Jean label. However, simply because a wine should be wonderful and worth the price does not mean that it will be. For too long in the wine industry, iconic producers of reserve wines have delivered fantastic, expressive, transcendental wines with stratospheric price ranges while offering barely palatable swill in their value line. A producer that truly exemplifies this trend is the Napa Valley-based Robert Mondavi Winery. The Reserve Napa Cabernet Sauvignon ($100+) is a seminal wine that consistently ranks with the top wines of California and yet the winery continues to fail to impress with their Private Selection line available for under-$10 a bottle. It seems that once a winery or winemaker realizes that it is capable of producing an award-winning reserve line, all other wines are delegated to the junior winemaker with
a serious character flaw in inflicting bad wine on the unsuspecting consumer. Such is the case with the Chateau St. Jean Sonoma County Chardonnay; no one can deny that Ms. Van Staaveren is an excellent winemaker and no one can deny that Chateau St. Jean can delivery an awe-inspiring wine. This, however, is not that wine. The wine's color fails to impress at the very onset of the pour: it is watery and altogether too clear for an appellation-designate Chardonnay. It offers melon, figs, and a hint of turpentine in the nose with mouthfuls of grapefruit, mango, lemon grass, nutmeg, and vanilla with a thin, watery-mouth feel that neither the overuse of oak nor the over extraction of the grapes can cover. This wine was tasted twice on different occasions for this review and it was consistent in its mediocrity. My recommendation is to pass on this wine and spend a few more dollars to pick up a better bottle. Serve this wine with cream-based pasta, grilled chicken, soft cheeses, or fish dishes.
Cincinnati Wine Pairing Examiner, Timothy Gabelman
Wines of Summer By Timothy J. Gabelman I have a confession to make: I loathe summer. I admit it, I'm the rare breed that hates to sweat, hates the smell of pool chlorine, and hates sunlight. I'm a winter-kinda guy – I love the cold, crisp, cleanness of winter, the dark, and yes, even the snow – and can't stand how quickly the humidity ruins my pressed and starched shirts in mid-August. There is, however, one small consolation to be gained from the passage into summertime: the opportunity to pick up light, fruity, and chilled wines to make the dreary, sun-soaked days bearable. Summer Reds If you're going to cook heavy fare in the summer – BBQ, ribs, steaks, hamburgers – or add heavy, spicy flavors to lighter meats (e.g., chicken or shrimp), you'll need to serve a red wine. Please, though, step away from the heavy Zinfandels and Syrahs that were fine in December and start walking over to the French section at your local Kroger or wine store. Summer calls for wines of lighter body with pleasing acidity and a crispness on the palate and Beaujolais may be just right. Before you wine-geeks panic, please notice that I dropped the “noveau” from my recommendation. The Beaujolais appellation is a great place to pick up wines that lack the body of a Burgundy, but not the structure or the finesse. The Gamay grape, which is the grape varietal in Beaujolais, can be expressive and elegant without being heavy or stuffy. More importantly, Beaujolais wines can be chilled. Okay, I know I'm going to get letters now that I've recommended that you chill a red wine, but look, if you're going to wear flip-flops for the next four months in clear violation of any Rules of Fashion you shouldn't over-think the Rules of Wine. Beaujolais-cru wines can afford a light chills (let's say a half-hour in the fridge) and survive; whats-more, they shall thrive in such conditions, showing off their beautiful bright fruit notes and zippy finishes. And the most important factor in recommending Beaujolais wines for summer? The price! Georges Debeuf and Louis Jadot wines are widely available and sell for between $10 and $15 per bottle. If you really want to step out of your element this summer, though, head over to the Spanish section of you wine store and pick up a wine from Rioja (the Marquis de Riscal is both affordable and delightful). Rioja wines are made from the Tempranillo grape and are similar in flavor to the Pinot Noir grape, which, until recently, was thought to be a relative of Tempanillo. How-
This is the wine that you can casually sip while the grill is warming and then pair with the crushed pepper porterhouse. I also love using Rioja wines as a base in Sangria â€“ and nothing screams summer quite like a punch bowl of alcohol and fruit! White Wines Anyone who has ever attending a Chardonnay wine tasting with me will instantly know that when it comes to white wine, I'm a termite. I love big, oaky, buttery, rich Chardonnay wines that leave you picking splinters from your palate. Even I have to concede, though, that those wines hardly please in the dead of August. Thankfully, Australian and New Zealand wineries have begun a trend (which has caught on in the U.S.) in producing unoaked Chardonnays that are simply delicious! For one of the American versions, look for Toad Hollow Mendocino County Chardonnay â€“ fermented and aged for nine months in stainless steel â€“ this wine has never seen a wooden barrel! Toad Hollow Vineyards, known for quirky and cute labels, starting producing unoaked Chardonnay in 1993 in small batches (3,000 cases), but today, its unoaked wine is its flagship with 42,000 cases produced in the 2009 vintage. It undergoes malolactic fermentation and sur lee aging, contributing to a fuller, richer mouth-feel, especially in the late palate, but the wine's bright citrus fruit notes dance unencumbered by that heavy vanilla and oak spice notes. From New Zealand, look for Kim Crawford Unoaked Chardonnay (yep, it says so on the label!), a great wine from a world-class producer. It shines with grapefruit, melon, fig, and flinty notes that are delicious all alone or with seafood. Long before Kim Crawford became famous for Sauvignon Blanc, they were producing this wine, and all it takes is a sip to see why they continue to this day. Summer, though, should be about more than merely drinking the same grape from a new package. Summer is about excitement and new experiences! So our wine drinking should reflect that attitude. A wine that you may not have had is Muscato d'Asti. This sparkling white wine from the Northern Italian region of Asti is often considered a dessert wine because of its high sugar content and low alcohol. However, it can be sipped all by itself or with light appetizer fare: think summer fruits (melon, strawberry, raspberry), light cheeses, and even light pasta salads. I really enjoy Viognier in the summer as well, especially paired with dinner salads on those all too hot days where one cannot fathom standing in front of a stove or grill. Viognier is the grape
of Northern Rhone white wines and can even be blended into Syrah-based red Rhone wines (known as co-pigmentation), but it is also found in the U.S. by producers such as Toasted Head and Three Loose Screws. The Crusher Wilson's Vineyard Viognier (by Three Loose Screws Wine Company) is a great summer white wine. It opens with a flowery complexity redolent of honeysuckle and jasmine. On the palate it explodes with peach, pear, honey, cloves, and a fleshy, rich mouth-feel. This wine a blend of Viognier and Chenin Blanc which explains the healthy acidic core; and as a single-vineyard designated wine is well worth the $14.99 price (available at Meijer). Of course, Chenin Blanc, Sauvignon Blanc, and Riesling all make wonderful summer wines as well. Rosé Wines When sitting on the porch, watching the day fade to twilight, and listening to the cicadas sing in the not-too-far distance, nothing seems more apropos than sipping a chilled glass of pink wine. In my opinion, rosé wines are some of the most versatile, fun wines available and they can be served with all manner of menus and can even be used as a bridge between courses of white wine dishes to red wine fare or even with some great items all on their own. First, though, be warned! When we speak of rosé wines, most wine drinkers shun any label that bears the dreaded phrase “white zinfandel” (or “white merlot,” for that matter). Truly magnificent rosé wines exist and are dry, acidic, with bright crisp fruit notes, like strawberries, cherries, and raspberries; not sweet pink wines that we serve our grandmother at Christmas dinner! We may as well discuss, first what rosé wines are, in terms of their production and difference from white and red wines. All grape juice, whether from a red or white grape, is clear (or white). To make a red wine, the grape juice is allowed extended contact with the grape skins after the grapes have been crushed; the color from the skins (and other things) leech into the juice and form the basis of a red wine. In the case of a rosé wine, the juice is allowed contact with the skins for a shorter period, thus allowing them pigmentation, but not as strong as in the case of a red wine. Rosé wines can therefore be made from any red grape, from Grenache and Syrah in the case of the great rosé wines from the Rhone region of France to the Cabernet Franc rosé that won Valley Vineyards a gold medal at the Ohio Wine Competition in 2010.
The advantage to rosé wines lies in the fact that while they are not as tannic as red wines (owing to little contact with their skins) they are acidic, making them great to pair with foods! In the chemistry of food and wine pairing, acid is your friend; it refreshes the pallet and works to counter the effects of fat – whether inherent to the food or in terms of the use of fat (in the form of oil or butter) that we use with which to cook – and should be thought of as a benefit to serving rosé wines. Even more important, though, is their versatility! Rosé wines can be served with any number of great dishes, including replacing heavy red wines if you want something chilled or are just interested in something a bit lighter and they can replace white wines if you want something a little different from the Chardonnay that you always find yourself reaching for. I love serving rosé wines for summer lunches with salads, light fish and seafood dishes, with ham, turkey, or cold-cuts, or even with soft-rind cheeses. Rosé wines are amazing all by themselves, as an aperitif, as well. If you like contrasting sweet and bitter flavors, try a structured rosé with fresh fruit or with fruit-bases tortes. Want a different twist on a mimosa? Mix equal parts of a rosé wine with sparkling water and serve with a strawberry! The best part is that while a truly amazing white or red wine usually runs into the premium or ultra-premium category of pricing (think $25 or more), staggeringly amazing rosé wines can be had for half of that price! Yes, real men wear AND DRINK pink! Rosé wines have developed a bad reputation because of their association in the general public's mind with a certain winery's white zinfandel (it rhymes with derringer). However, as wine drinkers, we are already a daring and exciting group of individuals that our friends respect and admire. Therefore, it should come as no surprise that we are quite happy to turn our backs on convention and drink great wine regardless of its color. Will we face the ridicule of those less-knowledgeable than ourselves? Certainly, and we will simply sneer at them for being ignorant, pretentious snobs. Sometimes, we just want a refreshing beverage, without all of the fuss of snobbery, and when that moment calls, we know that we can always reach for a great rosé! And when we want an amazing glass of wine with any number of meals, we can feel safe in pairing with rosé wines, too. So, feel confident the next time you see a pink wine on your local store's shelf, pick it up, be a man!, and serve it proudly with your next summer meal. Just remember to practice your sneer in the mirror.
Ohio Winos Just a couple of guys sharing their love of wine with anyone who will listen www.youtube.com/OhioWinos
Bottoms Up by Aimee Plesa Redbridge Gluten Free Sorghum Beer The very thought of a gluten free beer smacks in the face of what beer is. Beer is typically made with barley and malt-both no-nos for those on a gluten free diet. Many more specialty beers are being brewed using wheat, which is the cardinal sin of gluten free living. As more and more people are being told that a gluten free diet may help cure their ills, what’s a beer lover to do? Well, find a gluten free beer, of course! I recently attended a beer tasting event at Heather’s Coffee and Café in Springboro and-staying true to form– hung out chatting with the staff long after the other guests had gone home for the night. The topic of specialty beers came up and it was mentioned that they had ordered a case of gluten free beer for a customer but she had never come back to make her purchase. Intrigued, I asked where the beer was and purchased a bottle of Redbridge Gluten Free Sorghum Beer. Instead of wheat and barley, Redbridge is brewed using a grain called sorghum. Sorghum beer has a long international history, but is a relative newcomer to the United States, garnering more interest as the benefits of a gluten free lifestyle have become more apparent. First introduced in 2006, Redbridge is brewed by AnheuserBusch and has taken the gold at the Great American Beer Fest in the gluten free category. Upon opening my bottle of Redbridge, I was struck by the grassy, somewhat floral scent topped with a hint of caramel sweetness this brew offers. I found the aroma of this beer somewhat surprising, but not at all unpleasant. This beer pours a clear, rich amber color with little head and no real lacing. It is however, big on bubbles. Upon tasting this beer, I first noticed how watery it felt in my mouth. It offered decent carbonation, but seemed a little lacking in contrast to the number of bubbles it put forth. The taste is reminiscent of green apples that fades to a quick burst of hops before it melds back to a longer lasting sour note. I had no idea what to expect from my first ever gluten free beer and I was somewhat surprised by what I tasted. In my opinion, this is a good all around beer but it certainly takes a little getting used to the apple notes it so generously offers. I would pair it with heavier flavored meats and wild game to lighten up the overall flavor of the meal and offer a fresh, almost fruity tang to the taste buds. Redbridge Gluten Free Sorghum Beer can be purchased locally at Heather’s Coffee and Café in Springboro. If you are an establishment and would like to add this brew to your lineup, it is available through Heidelberg Distributing in Dayton and Cincinnati or Dickerson Distributing in Monroe.
Cocktail Hour by Aimee Plesa Liqueurs 101-A Guide to Popular Flavors A liqueur is defined as a strongly flavored alcoholic beverage that is typically served in small quantities after dinner. Liqueurs are made using a process of steeping flavor giving ingredients in a strong alcoholic base. These flavor giving ingredients often include fruit, herbs and flowers. Liqueurs, or cordials as they are sometimes called, were once a popular after dinner drink for the well off. Here is a guide to the most popular liqueurs by brand name and they flavor they represent. • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •
Amaretto Almond Bailey's Irish Cream Whiskey and cream Benedictine Honey, citrus and herbs Chambord Black raspberry Crème de Cacao Chocolate Crème de Cassis Currant Crème de Menthe Mint Curacao Bitter orange Cointreau Sour and sweet oranges Drambuie Honey, herbs, spices and Scotch Frangelico Hazelnut Grand Marnier Orange Jagermeister Anise Limoncello Lemon Maraschino Cherry Midori Melon Kahlua Coffee Kamora Coffee Ouzo Anise Pama Pomegranate Pastis Anise Sambucca Anise Southern Comfort Peach and bourbon Triple Sec Bitter and sweet oranges
While liqueurs are a popular after dinner indulgence for adults, they can also be used in a variety of recipes, including cocktails, desserts, candies and sauces. Liqueurs can add a distinctive flavor to any dish they grace. They add a subtle sophistication that a normal flavoring or emulsion can’t quite compare to. If you wish to use a liqueur in your cooking, please remember to use a light touch. You can always add more liqueur if needed, but you can never remove what has already been added.
PAMA INFUSED DARK CHOCOLATE TRUFFLES 6 ounces dark chocolate 1/4 cup butter, cut into pieces 1/3 cup heavy cream 1 egg yolk, slightly beaten 1/3 cup PAMA pomegranate liqueur dark chocolate coating or tempered dark chocolate Directions In a saucepan, combine chocolate, butter and cream. Cook over low heat, stirring frequently, until chocolate is melted and mixture is smooth. Stir in yolk and cook for 2 minutes. Remove from heat and slowly stir in PAMA. When completely mixed, pour into a mixing bowl and refrigerate. Chill for 2-3 hours, stirring from time to time. When completely cooled, beat with an electric mixer until the mixture becomes fluffly and lightens in color. Return to refrigerator to firm. Using a melon baller, make balls from mixture and dip, one at a time, into melted dark chocolate coating or tempered dark chocolate. Gently place on waxed paper and allow to set up. Store in refrigerator for up to 2 weeks. (Bottom left photo) • • • • • •
CHAMBORD BLACK RASPBERRY BROWNIES from Chef DeDe Wilson (recipe and image used with permission) • 1 box Devil's food cake mix • 2 eggs, lightly beaten • 1/2 cup oil • 1/4 cup water • 1/4 cup Chambord liqueur • 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips • 1/4 cup confectioner's sugar (optional) Directions Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Line a 9X13 baking pan with nonstick foil. Combine cake mix, eggs, oil, water and Chambord liqueur. Fold in semi-sweet chocolate chips. Pour into prepared pan and smooth. Bake 35-40 minutes. Cool to room temperature before cutting. Dust with confectioner's sugar (optional) and slice brownies into 3" squares. Top with ice cream and 3-4 ounces of Chambord. (Bottom right photo)
Celebrations Holidays and Special Occasions
Cinco de Mayo in Dayton, Ohio By Aimee Plesa Cinco de May, the 5th of May, is a celebration of Mexican heritage and pride. It commemorates the Mexican army's defeat of the invading French at the Battle of Puebla on May 5, 1862. Mexican President, Benito Juarez, stopped making interest payments on monies owed to other countries. The French did not take this well and invaded, hoping to force payment. Instead, they returned to Europe the losers of a battle they should have easily won. Contrary to popular belief, Cinco de Mayo is NOT the Mexican Independence Day, which occurred on September 16, 1810. While celebrated heavily in America-and around the worldCinco de Mayo is virtually ignored in Mexico, although it is observed in the state of Puebla. The trend of celebrating the 5th of May is similar to the celebrations of St. Patrick's Day and Oktoberfest, it is an ethnic celebration largely celebrated by the population as a whole. If you wish to partake in the celebrations, the emphasis is placed on music, food and drink. For a fun and festive Cinco de Mayo meal, visit any of these Dayton area restaurants: • • • • • • • • • • • • • •
El Rancho Grande, 6601 Terhune Drive in Middletown El Rancho Grande, 7500 Poe Avenue in Dayton La Pinata, 435 South Breiel Blvd in Middletown Cazadores, 1350 East Second Street in Franklin Elsa's, 6318 Far Hills Avenue in Dayton Elsa’s, 3618 Linden Avenue in Dayton Chili's, 1110 Miamisburg Centerville Road in Dayton Tumbleweed, 2030 East Dorothy Lane in Kettering Taquiera Mixteca, 1609 East Third Street in Dayton Pepitos, 3618 Wilmington Pike in Kettering Pepitos, 2412 Catalpa Drive in Dayton El Meson, 903 East Dixie Drive in West Carrollton El Toro, 4421 West Franklin Street in Bellbrook El Dorado, 1362 Rombach Avenue in Wilmington
A Mother's Love Makes a Wine Lover By Timothy J. Gabelman The making of an oenophile is not a question of “nature versus nurture.” There is no evolutionary reason for someone to love wine, as a beverage, to the point of preferring it to any other option, so nature cannot take credit for why we love wine. Thus we have to assume that our love of wine comes from environmental factors: being raised in a family with wine lovers, for example. So, one would think that my family must have been the single greatest influence on what made me into the snobbish, pretentious wine geek that writes before you today. My mother was, perhaps, distantly related to the Rothschilds of Chateau Lafite, on her father's side? Or maybe my father was descended from Italian nobility that produced the first sangiovese vines of Tuscany? Oh, no, fair reader! In truth, my mother could not be farther from what one would expect as the woman who bore the fine-wine loving specimen of humanity that sits before his computer today: my mother – and I am loathe to even write such slander! – loves pink wine! Before you rush to defend my mother, as we all of us must do on this day of celebrating all things motherly, I do not intend for you to think that she loves the great rosé wines of Chateauneuf du Pape or other similar “Old World” style. No, gentle reader, my mother is never happier than when the pink wine from a winery who's name rhymes Derringer is in her glass... with an ice cube! Yes, though it makes me hang my head in shame, my mother is that sort of wine drinker! Growing up, my father worked for Seagram's: the purveyor of all things alcoholic without being wine; my mother was fond of one of their leading products, Captain Morgan's Original Spiced Rum with her ubiquitous Diet Coke. Indeed, I can recall no single meal in my childhood where a bottle of wine sat on the table. Wine, it seemed to me, was only for Sunday mornings at our local church service, and was primarily fermented from Concord grapes, making a wine that was vaguely reminiscent of Welch's Grape Jelly. It should then come as no surprise that when my mother did imbibe wine, much later, and usually one that I brought to the table, that she preferred those that were fruity and sickeningly sweet, in the White Zinfandel section of your local grocery store. Any wine, from late harvest Rieslings to unoaked Chardonnays was described, without fail, as “too dry,” often without much of a taste, but rather with a quick glance at the color. So we are left to wonder, by what herculean feat did I overcome the shackles of my humble upbringing to become the world-renowned critic of all things wine that writes for your edification on a bi-monthly basis? That task I do leave to my mother's influence. Though she may never have taught me to love
and respect wine, she did teach me to love and respect myself and to aim to do something that I love regardless of what the world may do to hold me down. My mother showed me the possibility of a life lived happily and a life filled with joy because it was not filled with bitter disappointment and resentment for wondering, â€œwhat if?â€? Even today, my mother never praises my accomplishments, but only asks me what I plan to do tomorrow to surpass what I am proud of having done today. For this, and for all that my mother has done for me, and for all the mothers of our world who show their children a world that could be, instead of the one that is, I raise my glass today in honor on this Mother's Day. From the Wine Geek Department of Devour Dayton, Happy Mother's Day!
Mother’s Day Brunch By Aimee Plesa Mother’s Day brunch is a tradition in many homes across the Dayton area. Some families will deliver a homemade breakfast to mom as she awakes from her slumber. Others opt to bypass the muss and fuss and take mom out to a special restaurant. Both options are perfectly acceptable and much welcomed by moms everywhere. Just make sure to show mom the proper respect by practicing good table manners and cleaning up after yourself no matter where you decide to dine. For the do-it-yourself types, this Pumpkin Custard French Toast from Chef Donna Desfor , will impress even the toughest food critic. I know, pumpkin is not a flavor normally associated with Spring cooking or Mother’s Day celebrations, but one bite of this amazing recipe and you won’t care if it is seasonal or not! PUMPKIN CUSTARD FRENCH TOAST • 1 cup whole milk • 1 cup heavy cream • 1 (14.5 ounce) can solid-pack pumpkin • 1/2 cup sugar • 2 eggs • 2 egg yolks • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger • 1/2 teaspoon ground allspice • 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves • 2 tablespoons Zaya Gran Reserve rum • 1 loaf day old French baguette or crusty Italian bread, sliced 1 inch thick Directions In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment combine the milk, cream, pumpkin, sugar, eggs and yolks, spices and Zaya rum. Whisk on low speed until mixture comes together. Whisk on medium speed until fully combined. Place the sliced bread into the pumpkin mixture and let soak for 3-5 minutes. Meanwhile, place a non-stick skillet over medium heat. Add 1 tablespoon of butter. Carefully remove the bread from the soaking mixture and place it on the warm skillet. Repeat with remaining bread. Cook about 2-3 minutes until the underside of the bread is golden and firm. Carefully flip the rbead over and continue cooking until the bread is cooked through, about 3 or 4 minutes more. Remove to a warm platter and continue with the rest of the bread, soaking and cooking until the bread is used up. Serve on a warmed plate or platter. Garnish with baked apples or a sprinkle of confectioner's sugar and cinnamon. Recipe and image used with permission. If you prefer to skip the cooking and resultant cleaning, taking mom out for brunch in the Miami Valley is as easy as 1-2-3. Choose from the following eateries and make Mother’s Day brunch a special treat: The Golden Nugget (Kettering), The Breakfast Club (Lebanon), Denny’s (downtown), Bravo (Centerville), Scrambler Marie’s (Miamisburg), Frisch’s (Franklin, Miamisburg, Middletown, Lebanon, Dayton, Englewood, Fairborn and Beavercreek), First Watch (Centerville and Kettering) or Waffle House (Dayton, Huber Heights, Moraine and Beavercreek).
Memorial Day Sangria Recipes By Timothy Gabelman Memorial Day represents the start of both the grilling season and the outdoor entertaining season: in my opinion, the best that summer has to offer, in one weekend. There is something primal and exotic about grilling – the nuanced flavors of smoke and spices – and the tangy complexity of beef and pork and caramelized vegetables. Of course, being surrounded by family, friends, and neighbors also make for a great experience, assuming you don't add too much lighter fluid to the grill and end up losing your eyebrows. As a certified wine geek, I find it difficult to imagine there can be a holiday that is not elevated by the presence of a great wine; however, Memorial Day weekend may just be that holiday. Most of us will be reaching for a cold beer when relaxing on the porch or by the pool as the temperatures soar. Wine, though, as a base for a chilled mixed drink like sangria is perfect in place of the mundane 12-ounce bottles that others may serve. Sangria, beloved by the college crowd as an inexpensive buzz, can actually be a tasty and refreshing treat for adults. The base of a Sangria is, of course, wine and one must first decide if white or red wine is the way to go! White Sangria White Sangria, made with white wine, is especially enjoyable on a hot day. Start with a dry, medium-bodied white wine, preferably unoaked, such as Cupcake Vineyards Central Coast Chardonnay (available at Kroger or Meijer) and pour into a punch bowl. Add sliced fruit such as nectarines, peaches, oranges, pineapple, or strawberries and a spoonful of sugar for every bottle of wine. You can fortify the mix at this point with the inclusion of vodka or triple sec. Cover the punchbowl with plastic wrap and chill it overnight. It can be served over ice or mixed with a carbonated beverage (such as Sprite). Red Sangria Traditionally, Sangria is made from lighter bodied red wines such as the Tempranillo wines of Rioja. If you're a stickler for tradition, try Marquis de Riscal Rioja (readily available at Meijer) and pour it into a punchbowl with a spoonful of sugar for every bottle of wine. Add sliced fruit, such as strawberries, blackberries, raspberries, oranges, and add two cinnamon sticks. Fortify with vodka or a light rum. Cover the punchbowl with plastic wrap and chill overnight. It can be served in highball glasses as is or over ice. Other red wines that could be used include Five Rivers California Pinot Noir (available at Kroger) or a Beaujolais wine such as Louis Jadot. As you celebrate this holiday, we at the Wine Geek Department, and all of Devour Dayton Magazine, remind you to drink responsibly – if for not other reason that no one wants the hint of charred human hair wafting from the grill!
Five Fabulous Burgers for Memorial Day Grilling By Aimee Plesa Aahhhh, Memorial Day, the unofficial start to summer and a chance for men to begin showing of their grilling prowess. If your taste buds are tired of the same old same old, spice up your routine with the five unique burgers. RANCH BURGERS • 2 pounds ground sirloin • 1 (1) ounce packet of dry ranch seasoning • 1 egg, lightly beaten • 1/2 cup finely crushed saltines Directions In a bowl, mix together all ingredients and shape into 8 patties. Grill-or fry-to desired doneness, approximately 5 minutes per side for well done. Garnish as desired. TERIYAKI BURGERS • 2 pounds of ground sirloin • 1 packet on onion soup mix • 2 tablespoons of ginger teriyaki marinade mix • salt and pepper to taste • 1 can pineapple rings, drained. Reserve 1/4 cup of the juice Directions In a bowl, mix together all ingredients except the pineapple rings and form into 8 patties. Grill-or fry-to desired doneness, approximately 5 minutes per side for well done. Top with pineapple slices and garnish as desired. ZESTY JALAPENO BURGERS • 2 pounds ground sirloin • 2 fresh jalapenos, blackened and chopped • 2 tablespoon finely chopped white onion • 1 egg, lightly beaten • 1/2 cup finely crushed saltines • salt and pepper to taste • 1/2 teaspoon garlic salt • 1/2 teaspoon hot sauce • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce • 2 tablespoons steak sauce • 8 slices pepperjack cheese Directions In a bowl, mix together all ingredients and form into 8 patties. Grill-or fry-to desired doneness, approximately 5 minutes per side for well done. Top with cheese and garnish as desired.
PESTO FETA BURGER • 2 pounds ground sirloin • 2 tablespoons pesto • 1 teaspoon minced garlic • 1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese • 2 teaspoons seasoned salt • 1/2 cup finely crushed saltines Directions In a bowl, mix together all ingredients and form into 8 patties. Grill-or fry-to desired doneness, approximately 5 minutes per side for well done. Garnish as desired. TEQUILA LIME BURGERS • 2 pounds ground sirloin • 1/2 cup finely crushed saltines • 1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce • 2 tablespoons Montreal steak seasoning • 2 tablespoons tequila • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice • 1 teaspoon lime zest Directions In a bowl, mix together all ingredients and form into 8 patties. Grill-or fry-to desired doneness, approximately 5 minutes per side for well done. Garnish as desired. Cook's Notes-all of my burger recipes call for ground sirloin-that is my personal preference. If you prefer another meat, by all means use what you prefer.
Father’s Day Gifts of Food By Aimee Plesa Hopefully by now you know that Father’s Day is celebrated on the third Sunday in June. If not, you do now! If your pops is a foodie, no ordinary gift will do. Don’t even think about getting your dad a tie or power tools if he prefers to spend his evenings cooking in the kitchen or firing up the grill. Here are some of my favorite man inspired food gifts. If your dad thinks everything should taste like bacon, and let’s face it-what man doesn’t, take a trip to J&D’s online and browse their selection of bacon inspired products. You can surprise your old man with bacon flavored salt, popcorn or bacon flavored mayonnaise aptly named “Baconnaise”. Product selections vary by location, but Kroger, Marsh and Meijer carry J&D products. You can also shop online on their website or on Amazon. If you want to share the real deal with dad, brunch at The Breakfast Club may be just what you’re looking for. For dads who enjoy beer, Guinness, Sam Adams and Coors all offer a great variety of beer themed gifts, including collectibles, glassware and apparel. If you wouold prefer to take dear old Dad our for a tall, cold one consider visiting the Dublin Pub, Heather’s Coffee and Café, Angie’s Firehouse Tavern, Chappy’s Tap Room and Grille, Boston’s Bistro and Pub or Fox and Hound Pub & Grille. Does your pop consider himself a grillmaster? I know a new grill is out of most of our budgets, but new grilling tools or sauces are an affordable gift for most everyone. Plus they are easy to find. A quick trip to your favorite home improvement store-Home Depot, Lowe’s– or the closest big box retailer-Meijer, Wal Mart- will yield the tools of the trade your dad will need for fun summer grilling. Head to your favorite grocery store and choose from a variety of sauces, marinades and rubs. Better yet-make your own special blends! Websites such as the Devour Dayton blog or allrecipes.com will offer a nice variety of recipes to choose from. If you prefer to take your father for barbecue, visit City BBQ in Centerville for a delicious gift. If your dad enjoys his daily cup of coffee, there are a variety of coffee related goodies you can surprise him with. Purchase a mug and fill it with a bag of his favorite blend. If he enjoys flavored brews, you can make a basket full of powdered or shelf stable liquid creamers and flavor syrups. Some great local coffee shops to visit include Boston Stoker located in Springboro, Centerville and Oakwood Dorothy Lane Markets, downtown Dayton and Englewood, Starbucks, Caribou Coffee, Saxby’s and The Fine Grind. Does pops have a sweet tooth? Surprise him with a gift from Binky’s Fudge, A Confections, Bombshell Bake Shop or any other of Dayton area confectionery shop and bakeries. Looking for something sweet but a little more personal? Visit Chocomize and make day a custom chocolate bar with ingredients such as black peppercorns, beef jerky and real gold flakes. The greater Dayton area is filled with all kinds of delicious food finds if you just take the time to look in all of the nooks and crannies of the city and beyond. You never know what delicious treat you may find!
Spring CelebrationsCelebrations-A Shopping Guide By Aimee Plesa For every reason you have for celebratory shopping, there is a store to tickle your fancy. If you want to breakaway from traditional Mother’s Day, Father’s Day or Graduation gifts, try visiting some of the area’s most delicious foodie finds. • • • • • • • • • • • •
Heather’s Coffee and Café in Springboro. Wine and beer. A Confections in Springboro. Candy and baked goods. Big Sky Bread Company in Kettering. Baked goods. Ele Cake Company in West Carrollton. Cakes. Tina’s Sweet Treats in Franklin. Gluten free baked goods. 83 Sweets in Kettering. Cupcakes. Binky’s Fudge in Dayton. Fudge. Thistle Confections in Dayton. Baked goods. Bombshell Bakeshop in Dayton. Vegan baked goods. Henke Winery in Cincinnati.Wine. Esther Price Candy in Dayton. Candy. Dorothy Lane Market in Springboro, Centerville and Oakwood. Specialty foods. • Jungle Jim’s in Fairfield. Specialty foods. • Cake Craft in Beavercreek. Cake and candy making supplies. • Cincinnati Cake and Candy Supplies in Cincinnati. Cake and candy making supplies. • Sugar Craft in Hamilton. Cake and candy making supplies. If the “object of your gifting” no longer lives in the area, you may want to consider making them a gift basket of their favorite area foods. Some foods to consider including are Mikesell’s potato chips, Esther Price chocolates, Frisch’s tartar sauce, Gold Star chili and cookies from Big Sky Bread.
THE GREAT OUTDOORS Gardening, Grilling, Farmers Markets
Spring Fever By Criss Wittmann Each year, my daughter Julie and I get together the day before Mothers Day. We are both in a “shop till you drop” mode and we start hitting the garden centers. Here are a few that we visit most frequently. •
Burkharts Garden Center, located at 1530 East Central Ave. in Miamisburg is always our first stop. This is a family owned and run business. According to Mrs. Burkhart, it is run by Katie, the cat.. Katie is always there to oversee operations. She does however, take some time out to pester Britney, the adorable little dog also in residence. Burkharts specializes in pansies and hard to find shrubs and conifers, both of which are grown in their own green houses. Also grown in the green houses are peppers, broccoli, brussel sprouts and many varieties of tomatoes. Burkharts is also a florist. Their business hours are 8:00 a,m, - 5:00 pm. Monday through Saturday. They are also open on Sundays. They can be reached by phone (937) 866-2151 or you can visit them on the web at www.burkhartsnursery.com Siebenthaler’s is located at at 6000 Far Hills Avenue and 2074 Beaver Valley Road. This company has been in business since 1870 and has an extensive landscape business They have a large selection of herbs, trees, shrubs, annuals and perennials. Their main nursery is located on Beaver Valley Rd. Siebenthaler’s hours are Monday through Saturday 9:00 A.M. To 6:00 P.M. And Sunday 11:00A.M. To 5:00 P.M. The store we normally visit is located on Far Hills Ave in Centerville. They can be reached by phone at (937) 434-1326 or on the web at www.siebenthaler.com When we visited Siebenthalers we were informed that their 15% off sale and open house will be on April 21st beginning at 9:00 A.M. Lowes Home Improvements is located in several locations throughout the Miami Valley, including Centerville, Beavercreek, Huber Heights, Middletown, Trotwood and Dayton Mall. While visiting their garden center, we were told that their seasonal help receives extensive training. Lowe's sells over 20 varieties of tomatoes. They also have a large variety of annuals and perennials. Their plants are bought wholesale from several growers and “shipped to each store by corporate”.
Other notable garden centers worth visiting are Allison’s on Oregonia Road in Lebanon Oh, Bern's on Green Tree Rd in Middletown, and Stockslagers at 14037 State Route 35 in New Lebanon.
Choosing & Preparing A Site For Your Vegetable Garden By Dave Wittmann Welcome back! This is the second in a series of articles in which we are discussing taking vegetables and herbs from the seed to the table. The first article, Starting Plants Indoors, was featured in the March/April issue of Devour Dayton. You can find that article HERE. Choosing a site for your garden is perhaps the most important decision you will make if you wish to be successful. Considerations include sun exposure, drainage, proximity to the house and kitchen, and visibility. For vegetables and most herbs, you will want a site that gets full sun. For gardens, full sun means six to eight hours per day. A south or southeast exposure tends to be best, depending upon proximity to trees and buildings. If this is your first garden, you may want to consider planting along the foundation of your home. This will keep the size smaller and more manageable. This will also keep the garden closer to the kitchen. “Out of sight, Out of mind” is an appropriate thought when choosing your site. If your garden is placed where you see it often, you are more likely to weed, water etc.. You will want the site to be well drained. Excess water promotes rot and disease. Another problem that comes with excessive moisture are mosquitoes. Who wants to spend time tending to a garden if they are going to end up covered in bug bites? While they won’t harm your garden, they can harm you. Another consideration is size. If this is your first garden, you may want to keep it small. If you have a smaller yard, you may want to create several very small beds, or even areas within existing beds. Two or three tomato plants should keep a family of four well supplied and will take up very little room. If you live in an apartment or condo, container gardening is a great option. A few large pots, a few bags of potting or top soil along with your choice of plants will create new decorations for your deck or patio and provide delicious food for your family. Don't get too ambitious. Keep it simple and you will keep it fun and rewarding. In the next installment, we will discuss preparing and planting your new garden. Until then, keep your exposure and your attitude sunny.
Preparing And Planting & Maintaining Your Garden By Dave Wittmann
This is the third installment in a series of articles in which we are discussing taking vegetables and herbs from the seed to the table. The first article, Starting Plants Indoors, was featured in the March/April issue of Devour Dayton. You can find that article HERE. The second installation, Choosing & Preparing A Site For Your Vegetable Garden, immediately preceded this article. Preparing and planting your new garden can be simple and fun. Once you have chosen your site, you will need to remove turf (if applicable), add organic material such as humus or manure, and till or spade the soil and organic material. When preparing your garden, make sure that the soil is not too wet. You will want the soil to “crumble” when worked with a tiller or shovel. Clay soils are best prepared in the fall and then re-tilled or spaded in the spring. Once you have prepared your garden, you are ready to plant. This is the simple and fun part. If you are using “starts” or young plants, follow the recommendations for spacing and dig your hole to the appropriate depth. Make sure that you will not be covering more than a quarter to a third of the main stem of the plant. When installing new plants, I prefer to “water the hole”. This allows the roots easier access to the water and minimizes trauma to the young plant. You will want to wait 10 to 14 days before using chemical fertilizer or plant food. If you plan to use cages or stakes for your plants, now is the time to install them. It will look silly for a couple of weeks, but, installing them now eliminates the risk of root damage when putting the stakes or cage legs into the ground. Putting your cages up now will allow the plant to grow into the cage. Once the plants are large enough, use your old panty hose, or your wife's if you don't wear them, to tie the plants to the cages and stakes. Panty hose are soft and stretch, minimizing damage to the plant and while still allowing for plant growth. Now that you have your garden planted, you will want to keep it maintained.. Just a few minutes a day will go a long way toward healthy, productive plants. You will want to keep your garden free of weeds and well watered. Weeds can be pulled by hand, tilled in with a hoe, or kept in check with mulch. Most vegetables and herbs will require one to one and a half inches of water per week. Keep an eye on rainfall amounts and the moisture content of your soil and water appropriately. Using a watering can, sprinkler, or adjustable nozzle on your hose is best. This will keep you from damaging the stems and leaves of the plant. In the final installment of this series, we will discuss harvesting your garden and preparing some simple and delicious dishes using your harvest. Until then, keep your shovel sharp and your attitude sunny.
DOWNTOWN Downtown Dayton, University of Dayton, Oakwood, Kettering, Moraine, West Carrollton, Santa Clara, Northridge, Riverside, Belmont
Dining in DowntownDowntown-The Dublin Pub By Aimee Plesa The Dublin Pub rests at the “end” of the historic Oregon District in downtown Dayton. It has made a name for itself locally for serving up great food and entertainment in an atmosphere where all are welcome. What was once a relative dead end is now a thriving hub of Irish inspired cuisine, culture and entertainment that is unmatched in the greater Dayton area. The Pub was founded on the Irish principle of “craic” which means fun, entertainment and enjoyable conversation. I visited the “Dub Pub” one Saturday afternoon in late January and found it to be everything I heard it was and more. My guest and I arrived around 4:30 to a mostly empty restaurant, but the closer to the 5 o’clock hour it got, the faster the place began to fill. Halfway through our meal, it had become standing room only. To me, this is a true testament to the reputation of the Pub’s staff and food as the weather was cold, windy and icy. Our server was a friendly young woman who proved to be reliable, efficient and knowledgeable of the menu. I suffer from several food allergies, so for some servers, my barrage of questions can be a nightmare. After some consideration, I chose to start my meal with the giant stuffed mushrooms and then move onto the Irish Dip and wedge fries. The food arrived hot, hearty and full of flavor. Some restaurants serve mushrooms that have the texture of rubber, but not the Dublin Pub. The mushrooms I had were fork tender and filled with a delicious blend of Parmesan and garlic. No tough, rubbery appetizers here. The Dublin Pub describes their Irish Dip as a: “top round cheese steak topped with peppers, onions and provolone cheese. Served with au jus for dipping” I am a huge fan of both cheese steak and French Dip sandwiches and am a bit snobbish when it comes to eating them. The sandwich I was served was piled high with tender meat, flavorful veggies and gooey cheese. The bread my sandwich was served on had a wonderful blend of crunchy and chewy. I can honestly say that my first trip to the Dublin Pub will certainly not be my last. I am hoping my next visit will be on a Tuesday so I can enjoy the entertainment of open mic. The Dublin Pub is located at 300 Wayne Ave Dayton, OH 45410. You can contact the staff at 937-224-7822 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Hours of operation are as follows: Mon -Thurs: 11am1am (kitchen closes 11pm), Fri: 11am-2:30am (late night menu available.), Sat: 11am-2:30am (late night menu available.) and Sun: 11am-midnight (kitchen closes at 10pm.).
Dining In DowntownDowntown-Bombshell Bake Shop By Aimee Plesa If you have any preconceived notions about what vegan food is-or should be-check them at the door. Now! Everything you think you may know about vegan food is about to be turned upside-down. I don’t follow a vegan diet. Heck, most days I don’t even follow a diet that even remotely resembles vegetarian. I am a proud omnivore but when I came across KT’s Kitchen on Etsy a couple years ago, I was immediately intrigued by a vegan cookie offered called the “Lemon Liz”. I place my order and could not wait to dig into my cookie bounty. A couple of days later, my package arrived and Liz proved to be even more delicious than I could have imagined. The cookies feature poppyseeds, lemon zest and a sweet yet tangy glaze. The combination is simply to die for! Each cookie weighs in at a minimum of 70 grams each (approximately 2 and a half ounces for us nonmath folk) and comes individually packaged to ensure freshness. I tried to limit my cookie intake, but the call of Lemon Liz was too strong for my willpower. My cookie disappeared in short order. KT’s Kitchen changed their name to Bombshell Bake Shop, but luckily for Dayton, the recipes stayed the same. Even better, the menu grew! Now, customers with a sweet tooth can indulge in cookies, cupcakes, “vinkies”, granola bars and more. Since all of the Bombshell’s items are made with no eggs, dairy, or other animal derived products, they are naturally cholesterol free, which makes them a healthier indulgence. Please note-I said “healthier” not healthy-the sweets from Bombshell are still sweets and do contain sugar. All items from Bombshell Bake Shop are made fresh to order and it may take up to 72 hours for orders to be completed. Trust me, it is well worth the wait. Free delivery is available in the Downtown, Kettering and Oakwood on orders of $25.00 or more. Deliveries outside of this area may be arranged on a case by case basis. There is no charge if you plan on picking your goodies up. Those living outside of the Dayton area or sending Bombshell’s baked goods as gifts will be charged a delivery fee based on distance. All orders ship USPS Priority Mail. You can find Bombshell’s fresh baked goodness at the following Dayton area locations: Healthy Alternative in Beavercreek, Sidebar Espresso Bar, The Ohio Coffee Company, Locolicious at the Studio Zumba, Press Coffee Bar and Common Ground in Fairhaven Church.
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WEST Englewood, Farmersville, Gratis, Eaton, West Alexandria, New Lebanon, Brookville
The Last Drop Café By Dawn Vinson
Living in a small town has its advantages and disadvantage. A big disadvantage is that there is usually no decent coffee place to get a cup of joe. If there is, it is at the gas station and that is taking a coffee crapshoot with your first cup of the day. I live for coffee, and therefore, I can be a bit of a coffee snob! Most mornings, the first thing I do after I get up is grab a cup of coffee. Heaven help you if I get caffeine deprived. Lucky for me (and my better half) that a new coffee café opened up in New Lebanon this past month, called The Last Drop Café. I tried out The Last Drop Café on their first day it of business. In fact, once I saw the opening sign, I made a date with my son, Kaden, for a breakfast on the way to school. This was a treat to him as donuts are reserved for a once a month treat before Sunday school. On this particular Monday we walked in before 9am and surprisingly there were very few donuts left. Kaden got a wheat cake donut and a juice and I got a cup of Highlander Grogg Coffee. What surprised me was that while we were there the last of the donuts sold out! 250 donuts sold just less than three hours. The reception from the townfolks of New Lebanon has been positive, to say the least. They are thrilled about having a new donut and coffee shop in town. The Last Drop offers a variety of coffees each morning. The every day coffees are Highlander Grogg, Breakfast Blend, Donut Blend and Wild Cherry. Coffees that are offered different days of the week include
Buckeye Mudd, Eyes Wide Open, Sinful Delight, Caramel Swirl, Cinnamon Swirl, Zero Dark Thirty, Irish Crème and Peanut Butter. Cappuccinos flavors are Swiss Mocha and French Vanilla. Other drinks available include hot chocolate, peanut butter hot chocolate, and several varieties of milk, water and orange juice. Donuts for The Last Drop Café are provided by American Classic Donuts on Linden Avenue in Dayton. Donut flavors include traditional glaze, cinnamon twists, cake donuts, crème filled and fruit filled, cinnamon rolls, and apple fritters. Different flavors are also offered throughout the week. There are several tables and chairs available for those who enjoy lingering over their breakfast. Most people come in and grab a cup of coffee and a donut and head out the door. Or you can be like the Caffeine Crew , as my friends and I are called, and sit up at the shop every morning and enjoy good coffee mixed with good conversation. Owner, Tim Steiner, has said that in the next few months to year he hopes to expand into iced coffees, espresso drinks, bagels and a lunch menu. The Last Drop Café is located at 391 West Main Street in new Lebanon. Hours of operation are Monday thru Friday 6am until 1pm and Saturday 8am until 2pm. Come on down and enjoy a cup of coffee and a donut and say hi to the Caffeine Crew!
KJ’s By Dawn Vinson The first time I stepped into KJ’s was back in March of 2010 and there was a lot of commotion going on. Apparently, they were having their grand re-opening celebration. KJ’s owner, Kevin Hall, decided it was time to make some changes in his friendly, hometown diner. What was once Kathy’s Kitchen was transforming into KJ’s. From talking with the waitresses, I found out that most of the previous staff was still there but the menu was a bit different. When you walk into KJ’s, it is much like walking into a diner you would find along the highway while traveling. The seating is good-they offer tables for two all the way up to eight. They also offer counter seats for those who wish to be seated that way. The food at KJ’s is excellent-I have not had a bad meal yet. The offer a great breakfast menu and according to the menu “Breakfast is such a big deal that it takes up 2 pages.” The menu consists of omelets, homemade biscuits and gravy, pancakes, waffles, and eggs with a various combinations of breakfast meats. One of the best breakfast items for me is the homemade cinnamon roll. These rolls are huge and dripping with a white icing. I like to savor mine with a cup of coffee. The downside is that if you don’t get there early, they run out, which is a good thing because it shows how delicious they are. KJ’s also offers two interesting breakfast sandwiches. The Breakfast Club consists of bacon, ham, and fried egg with mayo, lettuce and tomato. the second sandwich (my personal favorite) is The Courtney. The Courtney is a French toast sandwich with egg, cheese and your choice of bacon or sausage. I comes served with syrup in case you want to dip your sandwich. The lunch/dinner menu is a great combination of soups, salads, sandwiches, burgers, and dinners. One can get everything from a grilled cheese sandwich to the house special sandwich known as the B and B Club. The B and B Club is a piece of grilled chicken on a pretzel bun topped with two pieces of bacon, Swiss cheese, lettuce, and spicy honey mustard. All of KJ’s sandwiches are served with a pickle and homemade potato chips. The burgers are hand packed and cooked to perfection. The two signature hamburgers are the Spartan Burger and the “Big Red” Burger. The Spartan Burger has a kick to it with cooked onions and jalapenos all topped with queso cheese. The “Big Red” Burger is two beef patties with cheese, lettuce, pickles served with special sauce
on a double decker bun. Soups at KJ’s are made daily and consist of home-made chili, vegetable beef soup and the soup of the day. Salads feature homemade croutons. Be sure to order the ranch, thousand island or French dressings-they are all homemade as well. The dinners are a combination of good old fashioned home cooking with a touch of five star restaurant. Meals, such a Beef Hot Shot and Country Fried Streak, give you a sense of being at your mom’s house for dinner. While dinners such as Marinated Grilled Chicken Breast and Baked Tilapia give your senses a treat. Once you have filled your stomachs, I hope you will have saved room for KJ’s homemade pies. The crust of their pies is so flaky that it literally melts in your mouth. Pies vary day to day but my favorites are the peach, Dutch apple, triple berry, and strawberry. Their crème pies are quite good too,. Choices include chocolate, banana, coconut and peanut butter. They offer ice cream for the kids. During the summer months, KJ’s also has homemade ice cream. My son’s favorite is the peanut butter, which is quite rich in. Other flavors include strawberry, chocolate and vanilla. Each day, KJ’s runs a different daily special. Daily specials are as follows: • Mondays are cabbage roll day • Taco Tuesday • Italian Wednesday • Sloppy Joe Thursday • All you can eat beer battered fish on Friday • Cheese steak Saturday • Pan Fried Chicken on Sunday The daily specials can change to include chicken and dumplings, Salisbury steak and barbeque ribs.
Another feature of KJ’s is the food challenge open to anyone that dares to attempt eating it. This breakfast item, named the “Fat N Skinny”, is four pounds of decadence. If you are able to eat it in under 25 minutes, you have managed to eat for free and you get a t-shirt that reads “I ate the whole Fat –n-Skinny.” If you don’t eat it in under 25 minutes you pay but still get a t-shirt that says “ I tried to eat the Fat –n-Skinny.” Yes, you read right the oxymoron the Fat-n-Skinny is four pounds of breakfast. This monster sandwich has two full size Belgian waffles, one pound of sausage, four fried eggs, green peppers, onions, smothered with sausage gravy and served with a side of syrup. 54 mortals have tried this behemoth and only a handful has succeeded in taking down this monster sandwich. Are you up for the challenge? KJ’s is a great family place to get out and visit. It even makes a great date night out. It’s the perfect atmosphere to get to know someone without the huge wait, crowds and noise that you get at chain restaurants. The motto at KJ’s is “Where family, friends and fun….collide with food.” KJ’s is located at 35 West Center Street in Germantown. Their hours of operation are • Monday thru Thursday 7AM until 7PM • Friday and Saturday 7AM until 9 PM • Sunday 7AM until 3 PM You can contact the restaurant by calling (937)855-7150. You can also find them on Facebook.
SOUTH Trenton, Middletown, Franklin, Carlisle, Springboro, Waynesville, Lebanon
Campioni’s Pizzeria By Aimee Plesa Campinoi’s Pizzeria, located in Springboro, is part sports bar, part family eatery and 100% dedicated to the community. Located at 92 Edgebrook Drive, this restaurant specializes in pizza, sandwiches and fun. The menu at Campioni’s is fairly standard when compared to other sports bars or pizza places, but don’t let that fool you. At Campioni’s, it is the flavor of the food that puts them miles ahead of the competition. Their pizzas feature the best tasting sauce in Springboro and their cheesesteak sandwich is topped a unique celery based sauce that is unlike any other I have ever tried. I do not like celery, but I can’t get enough of this sauce! Salads are fresh and crisp and the chicken wings perfectly seasoned. The service at Campioni’s is also always top notch. The staff is friendly and efficient and ready to answer any questions you may have about the menu. If you plan on dining in, simply place your order at the counter, choose your seats and your order will be brought out to you. While you are waiting for your food to be brought out to you, you can relax and watch any number of sporting events on the restaurant’s tvs or blow off some steam in their gameroom. Once you have completed your meal, the staff will tidy up after you. The walls of Campioni’s are decorated with sports memorabilia from local athletes. You can view player jerseys, photos, news articles and more. It truly is a walk down memory lane for many of us locals. Campioni’s offers a large party room that is perfect for birthday or team parties, informal meetings or for fundraising events. There are only two minor drawbacks I have encountered at Campioni’s. Parking can get a little tight when the restaurant is busy, but there is ample parking at nearby businesses if you don’t mind crossing Edgebrook Drive or walking over from a neighboring lot. Weekends can also get a little noisy on the weekends, but that is to be expected when parties and sporting events abound. It is no worse at Campioni’s than any other sports bar on a weekend. If you are looking for a quieter dining experience, I recommend visiting early in the week and in the earlier hours of the day. Since opening their doors in Springboro, Campioni’s has brought a fun and delicious dining experience to the community. Their hours of operation are as follows: • Monday thru Thursday 11AM-10PM • Friday 11AM-12AM • Saturday 11AM-11PM • Sunday 12PM-10PM If you wish to use Campioni’s for a party or fundraiser, call early. The party room schedule fills up quickly!
www.A-Confections.com Homemade and to die for sweets and baked goods
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EAST Spring Valley, Bellbrook, Centerville, Beavercreek, Xenia, Yellow Springs, WPAFB, Huber Heights, Fairborn, Wright State University
Graeter’s Ice Cream By Heather Bryant I was out and about one day in Centerville when I came across a local ice cream place by the name of Graeter’s. This local creamery was started in 1870 in Cincinnati by Louis C. Graeter and his trusty French Pot. When he was growing up in the mid 1800’s, Louis started making his frozen treat in the back of a market. He found that slow churning in a French Pot (which resembles a silver dairy can) was the best recipe for his ice cream. The blend of custard, cream and egg thickens as a blade scrapes the sides and folds in the cream on itself. This prevents air from getting in and results in a denser, creamer ice cream. After his death in 1919 Louis’s wife, Regina, took over and began to make the company what it is today. The operation grew through the depression and wars making it 145 years strong. While only 3% of family owned businesses make it to the 4th generation, the 4th generation of Graeter’s is now at the helm of the ship and striving to carry on the name to the 5th. As tradition has it, two pots at a time! The Centerville store was bright and cheerful and the staff was friendly. To help add to the festive atmosphere, there was a birthday party taking place. I looked over the assortment of handmade chocolates and what they had to offer in their freezers before I ordered. I had to study the menu for a minute because there were so many tempting flavors to choose from. Nine different signature flavors and thirteen chip flavors make it a mouth-watering experience looking at the menu alone! Graeter’s also offers four sorbets that are available year round and various seasonal flavors as well. Strawberry chip is the flavor for April through June. If you wish, a full list is available at website for your drooling-I mean-viewing, pleasure. While trying to decide, I kept asking myself, “Do I go with my favorites or do I go out of the box and try something new”? Decisions, decisions… I opted for something tried and true-a simple dip of chocolate ice cream. When ordering, you can get your treat in a bowl, a cone or a waffle cone. The next question I was asked is if I wanted a sundae or just the dips. Hmmm, I went for just the dips however they have several sundae choices with the 1870 Tower and Banana Split being the grandest, all with whipped cream, pecans, and a cherry included. They also have malts, shakes, frappe coolers, phosphates (aka old fashioned soft drinks make with soda flavors) as well as bottled drinks. As I got to the cashier I was asked if I had my Sweet Rewards card. I asked what that was and was told that you use it to earn things like t -shirts and teddy bears or other things from their reward options. I added
to my wallet the rewards card with hopes to getting a t-shirt when I save up enough points! I checked out the Graeter’s website and was able to find allergy information as well as a Kosher certifications. They also offer a complete list of ingredients for each flavor as well as nutritional information. Since the ice cream is processed on equipment that also processes nuts and other potential allergens, this information is also displayed. I found all of this information to be very informative and helpful. The Kosher Certification comes from Rabbi Yacov Toron, the rabbinic administrator at VAAD Hoier of Cincinnati. Not all flavors qualify for Kosher certification due to some of the ingredients they contain. If you don’t have the time to enjoy your treat in -store, there are other ways to get your ice cream fix. You can always get your order to go and take it with you while you’re out and about. If you’re traveling, you can purchase the Irresistible Travel Pack, which includes 6 or 12 pints packed with dry ice in an insulated cooler. If you wish to serve Grater’s ice cream at a meeting or special event, you can purchase the “Sundae Service”, which includes your choice of prescooped ice cream flavors, toppings, whipped cream, pecans and cherries, and disposable cups, spoons, napkins and utensils. You can also shop online and have the delicious gift of Graeter’s ice cream delivered. There is an option for ordering 6 or 12 pints at a time and a special gift package named the “Ultimate Gift”. The Ultimate Gift includes 5 pints of either sorbet or ice cream, a reusable cooler, cups, spoons, napkins and a scooper. Grater’s ice cream is even available for purchase at the following grocery stores: • Kroger • Walgreen’s • Springboro IGA • Meijer • Cub Foods • Marsh • Dot’s • Dillman’s • Lofino’s • Whole Foods Something to consider, when you are enjoying an ice cream treat from Graeter’s, you are keeping company with celebrities such as Oprah (butter pecan is her favorite), several U.S. presidents and even foreign dignitaries!
City Barbeque By Heather Bryant
City Barbeque is just what a barbeque lover dreams of. The restaurant focuses on the cuts of meat it uses and meat preparation-everything is smoked on site daily for 20 hours. They also provide a scrumptious selection of sauces and melt in your mouth side dishes. City BBQ was founded in 1999 by an award winning barbeque team who came together and decided to combine their recipes and techniques. Since opening, they have steadily grown in popularity. The first restaurant opened in Upper Arlington-a suburb of Columbus and as of October 2010, the company is operating 18 locations. The Dayton area is lucky to have two locations-Centerville and Beavercreek. Centerville is the location I typically visit. When you walk into City BBQ, you will not find stuffy staff. These guys and gals are down to earth-very friendly, helpful and accommodating. Even the lead pit boss/president, Rick Malir, invites calls and emails both good and bad and strives to answer all of them. If you have questions regarding the menu- what is in the sauces or how the meat is fixed-they are happy to answer. The answers to these questions are also addressed on the City BBQ website. The website also contains information on how to safely reheat their products, nutritional and allergy information. City BBQ foods are MSG free. Sauces are come from a peanut and tree nut free manufacturer, however there could be cross contamination on the equipment from fish, wheat, soy, milk eggs, and shellfish. These known allergens are stored separately to prevent most cases of cross contamination. The décor is laid back and features pictures of various bbq pit bosses and any fundraising events held at that location, wooden tables, sayings written out on brown paper. My personal favorite reads “ All Smoke, No Mirrors!” Guests can watch as they slice and serve their foods. And if you would like to try a sample, all you have to do is ask. They have no problem obliging
such requests. City BBQ smokes their meats over hickory wood daily. Their selection of meat includes: beef brisket, ribs, sausage, pork, turkey and chicken. As you begin to dine, you may notice a pink center to your meat. This is called the “smoke ring” and it is desirable to find in barbecue. It is the mark of the 20 hour smoking process, not undercooked meat. One of the most unique aspects of City BBQ’s menu is that their meat and sauces represent all of the major barbeque areas of America. This allows diners to mix a southern meat with a Kansas City sauce, if desired. The flavor you choose to savor is all up to you. All locations offer a City Card where you can amass points for free food. You can also become a part of the VIP Club and get coupons, news and information when available. If you can’t take the time to dine in, you can order catering, Pig up and Go (aka pick up), and take home tubs of your favorite foods. At City BBQ it is possible for a family of four to eat for under $20.00! To make life a little simpler, you can call in your order or order online and even place an order to be shipped. City BBQ will freeze your food and have it delivered within 2 days! All are great ideas for Mother’s, Father’s or Grandparent’s Day gifts. Each time I have visited, I have tried something different and have no complaints about anything. They boast of fresh kettle brewed tea as well as lemonade from pure cane sugar, yum! My favorite is the brisket sandwich with green beans and potato salad. I added a bit of sauce and everything just melted in my mouth. For dessert, they make banana pudding and peach cobbler that are both excellent. They also sell a premade triple chocolate cake that can serve from 1-30 people. For all selections you can order enough for one (about a pint), to a crowd in quarts or pans of your favorites, watch out they will go fast. You can visit City BBQ in Centerville on East Franklin Street or Beavercreek on North Fairfield Road. Locations are open 10:30 AM-10:00 PM Monday through Saturday and 11:00 AM-9:00PM on Sunday. I strongly urge you to go and visit, I know you will not be sorry you did!
Health Foods Unlimited By Heather Bryant Health Foods Unlimited is a family owned and operated health food store located in Centerville. I stopped at this all natural grocery store in order to research gluten free foods and walked away so impressed I decided to write about my experiences. The store is located at 2250 Miamisburg Centerville Rd, Centerville, OH 45459. Their phone numbers are (937)433-5100 for local calls or 1-888-540-2799 for outside of the immediate area. I had been in the store before and felt somewhat overwhelmed. This time, I went in searching for a friendly face and ready to ask for help. I was greeted by Simir. Wow! He was knowledgeable about the products as well as what certain ingredients do to peoples bodies in order for them not to tolerate foods. As we walked around the store, talking about the many products on the shelves, I became quite impressed to find that many of the storeâ€™s employees were busy helping customers or stocking inventory. Vendors were also in the store taking stock of their goods and restocking as necessary. At any given time, you can find between 15 and 30 employees in the aisles or behind the help desk. Each goes through extensive training before hitting the floor. They must also participate in monthly training sessions. If situations warrant it, there may be even more! I spoke to Rhonda Miller, the general manager/co owner, and found that the business has been in the same location since 1978 and has tripled in size. Rhondaâ€™s late mother opened the store and Rhonda and her family carry on the family business. Healthy living started as a fad long ago and has been catching on more and more as people learn to take better care of their bodies and themselves. In some cases, following a restrictive diet (such as gluten free) is thrust upon an individual when they develop health problems such as an allergy or intolerance to a specific ingredient. Chain grocery stores are becoming more sensitive to the needs of people who must follow dietary regulations, but Health Foods Unlimited truly understands the needs of their customers. The store carries over 20,000 products, including dry goods, frozen foods, bakery items, organic coffee and produce. They also offer a variety of other items such as baby food, herbs, spices, bulk fruits and nuts. While perusing the shelves, I noticed that the pricing structure was higher than the regular grocery store. I asked why the prices are so different and was told that it was because each of their products
has something missing that is contained in regular foods. It was further explained that the removal of ingredients and finding a quality substitute can be an expensive process. Before I made my visit to Health Foods Unlimited, I looked them up on the internet at HealthFoodsUnlimited.com. Their website is a treasure trove of information. It discusses the products they carry-including a feature that allows users to look up products by name or UPC code, has a schedule of guest speakers, offers money saving coupons, and shares news articles that pertain to health and healthy living. Both the store and the website are colorful and packed full of information for the novice to the professional. Both are clearly labeled and easy to maneuver through. Help is just a cheerful face or phone call away. There may be other health food providers in the area ,but none compare to the size and selection of Health Foods Unlimited. Many times, the smaller stores may not have a product their customer needs so they will be referred to Health Foods Unlimited. As I was talking to Rhonda, a local honey vendor stopped by to check on stock. I found it refreshing to know that with their large selection of products, many vendors are so close to home. Another reason to visit Health Foods Unlimited is their organic coffee bar with stocked with delicious goodies. It was nice to be able to get my cup of joe and know that I would not feel quite so guilty later! I personally suffer from food sensitivities and know many people that have food allergies. Knowing that Health Foods Unlimited offers so many safe products to eat guarantees that this is one store I will be visiting many times again.
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