Tag Archives: Food & Wine Magazine

Simple Valentine’s Day Dinners for Two | Favorite Recipes

RoseGoing out on Valentine’s Day sounds romantic — wine service, beautifully composed courses, flowers on white tablecloths. But in execution, it’s often less than perfect. Expensive. Crowded. Babysitters are booked, servers are stressed, and if you didn’t plan ahead, you may not get a reservation at your favorite place before 9 pm.

This year, make it a simple romantic dinner for two with one of these easy main course ideas.  Pair one of these with a simple salad (such as Boston bibb with radishes and buttermilk dressing, citrus, celery and fennel, or Lidia’s radicchio, goat cheese and raisin salad), a bottle of sparkling wine and a purchased pastry dessert.

Now that’s romantic.

MN0612H_asian-marinated-pork-chops_s4x3_lg

Asian Marinated Pork Chops
These beautiful chops have as much going for them as a delightful first date. Marinated with brown sugar, rice vinegar, ginger, Sriracha, sesame oil, garlic and orange, these chops are rich and flavorful, but inexpensive enough to allow for a box of artisan chocolates for dessert.

Flank steak

Grilled Flank Steak with Watercress, Blue Cheese and Tomato

This simple flank steak becomes more tender with a lengthy marinade, at least eight hours (but overnight is fine too). The ingredients in the marinade, including rosemary, garlic, balsamic vinegar and red wine, are usually on hand.

Recipe writer EmilyC writes on Food52, “When you cut your steak into bite-sized pieces, a little juice spills out and creates a delicious, impromptu salad dressing. Plan to buy extra steak and salad ingredients when you make this dish — leftovers make a fabulous steak sandwich on toasted ciabatta.”

Mussels, Clams and Shrimp Saffron Risotto

Photo by Noel Barnhurst

Seafood is a classic for a romantic dinner. This lovely recipe from Epicurious resembles paella, with lovely mussels, clams and shrimp. Even a simple risotto with just shrimp would be a lovely weeknight dinner, made with whatever wine you’re pouring (ideally a dry white).

Posters rave about the olive relish, and though it’s technically a one-pot dish, recipe testers recommend cooking the seafood separately from the rice to make sure everything comes out right.

food52_01-24-12-0809

Photo by James Ransom

Melissa Clark’s Really Easy Duck Confit

Duck is a bit of a splurge, but it’s worth it for a special occasion. This recipe from Food52 takes the French bistro classic, duck confit, and simplifies it for an easy weeknight meal.

“This is not the confit they teach in cooking school, or the kind served at restaurants,” writes the editor who adapted the recipe from Clark’s “In the Kitchen with a Good Appetite.” “It’s the kind you can make any time — all you need are a few good duck legs, a skillet and some very basic spices. And it’s just as good.”

So find a plan for the kids and take the time to enjoy your own special Valentine’s meal at home.  We hope you enjoy these simple yet special recipes.  All the best for a Happy Valentine’s Day!

About gThankYou, LLC

Turkey Gift Certificates and Turkey Or Ham Gift Certificates by gThankYou! are two of America’s favorite employee gifts and can be redeemed for any Brand (Turkey or Turkey Or Ham), at virtually any Grocery Store in the U.S.

gThankYou, LLC provides company leaders with a variety of easy, meaningful and affordable ways to recognize and reward employees, holiday time or anytime.  gThankYou! Certificates of Gratitude and our free Enclosure Cards are personalizable including incorporating your company logo. And, nearly all orders ship same day.

gThankYou, LLC (www.gthankyou.com) is based in Madison, Wisconsin.  Contact:  Rick KileyChief ThankYou! Officer, gThankYou, LLC at info@gthankyou.com or 888-484-1658.
Follow the Company Blog –  “Celebrating Work”.
Join the Conversation @gThankYou 
Watch our gThankYou! YouTube Video – “Learn More About Us”.

“G” logo and “Certificates of Gratitude” are trademarks and “gThankYou” is a registered trademark of gThankYou, LLC.

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What to Serve at Your Holiday Party: Turkey or Ham?

A perfectly browned turkey or a glazed holiday ham, sliced into layers like the petals of a flower. Either makes for a crowd-pleasing main course, ample enough to feed a crowd, with leftovers to spare.

But when you’re hosting a holiday gathering (that isn’t Thanksgiving — turkey has the clear edge there), which do you choose for your centerpiece? What makes better appetizers for a cocktail party?

If your gathering is less than two weeks after Thanksgiving, everyone might be happier with ham. A spiral-sliced, smoked bone-in or boneless ham comes already cooked, so all you have to do is warm it up, glaze it and serve.

Hosting a cocktail party? For appetizers, ham is a little more decadent than turkey.

For example, I served ham and cheese puff pastry squares (recipe by Ina Garten on the Food Network) for my New Year’s Eve party in 2010. They were finger food, easy to make and fantastic with sparkling wine.

Ham and rice croquettes are a tiny bit more fussy because they require frying, but reviewers of this Gourmet recipe raved about them. “Superb! One of the easiest apps to please a wine-swilling crowd,” wrote one; another said, “My guests really loved them.”

For a Spanish flare, try Spanish-style garlic shrimp with ham and bell peppers, which is a “great tapas or appetizer with crusty bread.”

If you have picky eaters or anyone who keeps kosher on the guest list, go with turkey. Turkey offers white meat for the dieters and dark for everyone else, and most flexitarians make an exception for fowl.

If you choose, you can even roast a smaller bird (though the leftovers are so good, that’s a hard argument to make).

Credit Elinor Carucci for Bon Appétit

For appetizer portions, Jennie-O is a font of great entertaining ideas based around turkey, like pesto turkey pinwheels and smoked Gouda and turkey dip.

These turkey pockets are made super easy by the addition of premade dough.

For something different in the weeks following Thanksgiving, try something more exotic on your turkey. Asian flavors are awesome with the neutral flavors of turkey breast meat — check out the cinnamon-orange scented turkey from Rick Rodgers at Bon Appétit (the “dry brine” salt includes star anise, Szechuan peppercorns, clove, coriander and fennel).

Joanne Chang’s recipe for a turkey glazed with soy, sesame, honey and ginger, found in Food & Wine, will banish memories of Thanksgiving from your holiday gathering. Also intriguing is a recipe for a teriyaki glaze on the turkey and shallot gravy to finish.

Credit Con Poulos for Food & Wine

Whatever you do, be sure to save some leftovers for yourself! Enjoy.

About gThankYou, LLC

Turkey Gift Certificates and Turkey Or Ham Gift Certificates by gThankYou! are two of America’s favorite employee gifts and can be redeemed for any Brand (Turkey or Turkey Or Ham), at virtually any Grocery Store in the U.S.

gThankYou, LLC provides company leaders with a variety of easy, meaningful and affordable ways to recognize and reward employees, holiday time or anytime.  gThankYou! Certificates of Gratitude and our free Enclosure Cards are personalizable including incorporating your company logo. And, nearly all orders ship same day.

gThankYou, LLC (www.gthankyou.com) is based in Madison, Wisconsin.  Contact:  Rick KileyChief ThankYou! Officer, gThankYou, LLC at info@gthankyou.com or 888-484-1658.
Follow the Company Blog –  “Celebrating Work”.
Join the Conversation @gThankYou 
Watch our gThankYou! YouTube Video – “Learn More About Us”.

“G” logo and “Certificates of Gratitude” are trademarks and “gThankYou” is a registered trademark of gThankYou, LLC.

5 Back-to-School Lunches You’ll Love Too

When I was a kid, my packed lunch was often the same every day: a container of yogurt, frozen; a turkey sandwich on wheat bread (with lettuce and tomato in a separate baggie); raw, kid-sized veggies (baby carrots, celery sticks) and something sweet, maybe a mini candy bar if it was Halloween or Easter time.

But creativity in kids’ lunches doesn’t have to take a backseat when the school year (and track practice and band practice and school play rehearsals) resume in full force. Were betting even the adults in the family will enjoy these recipes.

Here are five great ideas for fun school lunches to kick- off 2012-13!

gThankYou! Turkey Wrap

Thanks to the “Taste and Tell Blog”

1. Got some leftover turkey? Try a cucumber ranch turkey wrap (inspired by Every Day with Rachel Ray) with cream cheese and fresh veggies. It’s quick and portable, and you can vary it a dozen ways using leftover ham or chicken, avocado, tomato, a mild blue cheese, grapes and/or fresh greens. If your kid is adventurous (or you want a more adult version), try adding sundried tomato pesto, marinated artichokes and roasted red peppers.

2. As summer comes to a close, make the most of all those beautiful tomatoes with a simple watermelon gazpacho (adapted from Food and Wine Magazine). Skip the salsa topping and it couldn’t be simpler — chop and blend together sweet seedless melon, fresh tomatoes (the more colorful the better!), cucumber, a touch of sherry vinegar and a drizzle of olive oil. On the side, make your own “Lunchable”; pack it with salami, cheddar cheese and crackers for extra protein and carbs.

3.  While we’re talking tomatoes, don’t miss the chance to make sweet roasted cherry tomato sauce for an easy lunchtime pasta that’s wonderful at room temperature. It’s like Kraft Mac and Cheese studied abroad in Italy. Check out recipes from Susie Middleton, author of The Fresh and Green Table and the blog Six Burner Sue, or adapt this one from Epicurious. Let your child choose a pasta shape, like cute ear-shaped orecchiette or twisty gemelli.

gThankYou! Sub Sandwich

Thanks to The Food Network
and Tyler Florence

4. Chefs send their kids to school, too. At the Food Network, celebrity chef Tyler Florence makes a BLT with pesto and fresh mozzarella, stuffed into an old tennis ball tube with a popcorn ball and a bottle of water. In addition to tasting great, the baguette keeps its shape during morning classes. With a green salad or a cup of tomato soup, these sandwiches are great for a family dinner, too. Check out Florence’s recipe here.

gThankYou! Chickpea & Hummus bento box

Thanks to James Wojick
at Real Simple

5. Take a tip from your favorite Med cafe and make a lunch out of hummus, fresh bell peppers, a chickpea-cucumber salad and whole wheat pita pockets, cut into bunny shapes for fun. Make hummus yourself (recipe at Forkful of News) or find it pre-packed — many grocery delis make their own. Add mild sheep’s milk feta, like Hidden Springs, and a couple of kalamata olives for salty contrast.

For more ideas, browse this gallery at Real Simple, peruse grab-and-go breakfasts at Cooking Light and check out Real Food for Healthy Kids (Harper Collins, 2008) for 200 kid-friendly recipes.

P.S. Need a sweet new lunchbox for your half-pint? Check out this post on Mommyish or browse Pinterest for a variety of ideas.

About gThankYou, LLC

Turkey Or Ham Gift Certificates by gThankYou! are one of America’s favorite employee gifts and can be redeemed for any Brand whole Turkey or half or whole Ham, at virtually any Grocery Store in the U.S.

gThankYou, LLC provides company leaders with a variety of easy, meaningful and affordable ways to recognize and reward employees, holiday time or anytime.  gThankYou! Certificates of Gratitude and free Enclosure Cards are personalizable including incorporating your company logo, and ship same day.

gThankYou, LLC (www.gthankyou.com) is based in Madison, Wisconsin.  Contact:  Rick Kiley, Chief ThankYou! Officer, gThankYou, LLC at info@gthankyou.com or 888-484-1658.
Follow the Company Blog –  “Celebrating Work”.
Watch our gThankYou! YouTube Video – “Learn More About Us”.

“G” logo and “Certificates of Gratitude” are trademarks and “gThankYou” is a registered trademark of gThankYou, LLC.

Summer Grilling: Five Tips for Perfect Turkey Burgers

Turkey burgers get a bad rap, either for being a too-healthy or for the (legitimate) reason that they’re often dry and less flavorful than their beefy counterparts.gThankYou! – Turkey Burgers

But with a hot grill and an open mind, there are ways to combat both of these problems. Turkey burgers don’t have to be boring just because they’re better for you.

Five Tips for Perfect Turkey Burgers!

1. Go to the dark side. Turkey, like chicken, has white and dark meat sections. The breast is only slightly better for you, (says New York Times writer Anahad O’Connor), while the dark meat (thighs and legs) will make for a more flavorful burger. So leave the “extra lean” Jennie-O for when you’re counting calories and get regular ground turkey; it still has 30 percent less fat than beef.

2. Carbo-load. Whether it’s fresh bread crumbs, flaky panko or even leftover rice and canned beans, turkey burgers benefit from a little filler. You don’t want too high a ratio, unless you’d rather make meatloaf, but bread acts as a binder and helps hang on to extra moisture, which will make the burgers juicier.

3. Spice it up. Turkey loves Southwestern spices, like serrano chiles, garlic and cumin. Take a riff on a steam bun with an Asian turkey burger (care of Serious Eats) made with cilantro, soy sauce, ginger, sesame oil and spicy Sriracha mayonnaise. Or make a detour through Oaxaca with coriander, cinnamon, ancho chili and chipotle salsa (thanks to Lynn Rossetto Kasper and “The Splendid Table’s How to Eat Supper”). And what’s better than a burger stuffed with cheese…?

4. Flip it. You may have heard conflicting evidence on this, but it’s actually OK to flip a burger more than once, and it may even lead to a faster cooking time. Keep an eye on your flame (medium-high is good), and estimate about 10 minutes for a juicy burger. Give the burgers a few minutes to rest while you throw your buns on to toast.

gThankYou! - Turkey Burger with Toppings

5. Mix up your toppings. Step off, ketchup. Try smoked gouda cheese and a horseradish-mustard-honey spread. Try tomato-mango chutney made with cilantro and lime. Combine tomato, jam, olives and feta for a sweet-salty topping, or take a North African twist with a yogurt-based dressing with lemon juice, cumin and cayenne.

About gThankYou, LLC

Turkey Or Ham Gift Certificates by gThankYou! are one of America’s favorite employee gifts and can be redeemed for any Brand whole Turkey or half or whole Ham, at virtually any Grocery Store in the U.S.

gThankYou, LLC provides company leaders with a variety of easy, meaningful and affordable ways to recognize and reward employees, holiday time or anytime.  gThankYou! Certificates of Gratitude and free Enclosure Cards are personalizable including incorporating your company logo, and ship same day.

gThankYou, LLC (www.gthankyou.com) is based in Madison, Wisconsin.  Contact:  Rick Kiley, Chief ThankYou! Officer, gThankYou, LLC at info@gthankyou.com or 888-484-1658.
Follow the Company Blog –  “Celebrating Work”.
Watch our gThankYou! YouTube Video – “Learn More About Us”.

“G” logo and “Certificates of Gratitude” are trademarks and “gThankYou” is a registered trademark of gThankYou, LLC.

5 Delicious Ways to Use Leftover Ham

Let’s Eat Leftovers – It’s Easy & Delicious!
Ham is amazing. It can be a main dish on its own, a side dish, or an ingredient in a larger recipe. It is equally welcome at breakfast, lunch, or dinner. It can add a touch of salty, smoky goodness to fancy French cuisine or simple, down home favorites.

Here are 5 Easy and Delicious Leftover favorites everyone will enjoy:

1.  Pot Pie
Nothing says comfort food like a flaky, warm pot pie. For an updated version of the old standby, try this pot pie, stuffed with chicken, ham, and fennel from Bon Appétit!

2.  Spicy ScramblegThankYou! - Spicy Scramble
Ham makes breakfast better! Fry up some leftover ham, sweet potatoes and eggs for a fabulous dish to spice up your day.

3.  Frittata
Hosting agThankYou! - Ham Frittata brunch or need an easy dinner?  Serve this “green eggs and ham” frittata, filled with leftover ham, nutty gruyere cheese and fresh spinach shared by Food & Wine Chef, Melissa Rubel Jacobson.

4.  Hearty Soup
Serve this hearty Food Network Magazine Corn and Ham Chowder with some warm crusty bread and you have a perfect dinner. Be sure to use fresh corn – it will make a huge difference in your chowder!

5.  Not Your Usual Dinner Casserole
Rachel Ray marries ham and cauliflower a creamy, cheesy and savory casserole that’s as easy to make as it is delicious!

About gThankYou, LLC

Turkey Or Ham Gift Certificates by gThankYou! are one of America’s favorite employee gifts and can be redeemed for any Brand whole Turkey or half or whole Ham, at virtually any Grocery Store in the U.S.  

gThankYou, LLC provides company leaders with a variety of easy, meaningful and affordable ways to recognize and reward employees, holiday time or anytime.  gThankYou! Certificates of Gratitude and free Enclosure Cards are personalizable including incorporating your company logo, and ship same day.

gThankYou, LLC (www.gthankyou.com) is based in Madison, Wisconsin.  Contact:  Rick Kiley, Chief ThankYou! Officer, gThankYou, LLC at info@gthankyou.com or 888-484-1658.
Follow the Company Blog –  “Celebrating Work”.
Watch our gThankYou! YouTube Video – “Learn More About Us”.

“G” logo and “Certificates of Gratitude” are trademarks and “gThankYou” is a registered trademark of gThankYou, LLC.

5 Holiday Ham Glazes to Delight Your Taste Buds

 Helping your holiday ham taste its best.

Sometimes foods with distinct flavors need counterpoints to bring out the best taste combinations. Whether it’s strong coffee in barbecue sauce, a pinch of hot pepper in Mexican cocoa, or a splash of balsamic vinegar on a bowl of freshly sliced strawberries, these culinary marriages will delight your taste buds!

Such is the case with ham. . . salty, smoky, and succulent it pairs wonderfully with sour fruit (pineapple, orange, cranberries, currants, rhubarb), sweet elements (brown sugar, maple syrup, honey, even cola!) and spices (cloves, mustard, allspice, ginger, cinnamon).

Your guests will enjoy ham with a new twist, using one of these tasty glazes. Not only will it give your ham a delicious flavor, the glaze keeps it moist and juicy while it bakes.  Which one will you try first?

gThankYou! - Pinapple Honey Adobo Ham

Pineapple Honey Adobo from The Nibble

  1. Honey gives glazes a sweet base.  Try these interesting varieties such as
    Honey Balsamic Fig or Pineapple Honey Adobo (right) from The Nibble.
  2. Rhubarb and ginger combine to give this Bon Appétit Baked Ham with Mustard-Red Currant Glaze and Rhubarb Chutney some kick!  If rhubarb is difficult to find, try mango for an interesting twist.
  3. The perfect blend of sweet and spicy – and so easy to make!  This great recipe for Pomegranate Jalapeno Glazed Ham comes from chef Akasha Richmond of restaurant Akasha in L.A., care of Food & Wine Magazine.
  4. A gThankYou! favorite from Minnesota’s own Lucia Watson; Cider-Soaked and Brown Sugar Glazed ham from her cookbook, Savoring the Seasons of the Northern Heartland.
  5. Hard to beat, Emeril Lagasse’s
    Sugarcane Baked Ham with Spiced Apples and Pears.  (Thanks to FoodNetwork.com.)  This glaze gets its sweet notes from molasses, corn syrup and sugar cane!

    gThankYou! - Emeril Lagasse Sugarcane Baked Ham

    Emeril Lagasse Sugarcane Baked Ham

Enjoy!  Let us know your favorite ham glaze we forgot to include.

About gThankYou, LLC

Turkey Or Ham Gift Certificates by gThankYou! are one of America’s favorite employee gifts and can be redeemed for any Brand whole Turkey or half or whole Ham, at virtually any Grocery Store in the U.S.  

gThankYou, LLC provides company leaders with a variety of easy, meaningful and affordable ways to recognize and reward employees, holiday time or anytime.  gThankYou! Certificates of Gratitude and free Enclosure Cards are personalizable including incorporating your company logo, and ship same day.

gThankYou, LLC (www.gthankyou.com) is based in Madison, Wisconsin.  Contact:  Rick Kiley, Chief ThankYou! Officer, gThankYou, LLC at info@gthankyou.com or 888-484-1658.
Follow the Company Blog –  “Celebrating Work”.
Watch our gThankYou! YouTube Video – “Learn More About Us”.

“G” logo and “Certificates of Gratitude” are trademarks and “gThankYou” is a registered trademark of gThankYou, LLC.