7 Tips for Setting A Thanksgiving Table

Tomorrow is Thanksgiving and if you’re hosting you are probably busy with preparations! Your turkey is thawing, your vegetables are chopped, the house is clean….now it’s time to set the table! Read these tips before you start putting out your napkins and flatware…

  1. Iron your tablecloths and napkins the day before.
  2. Wash and set aside all of your flatware and glassware the night before. Make sure to dry everything so there aren’t any spots or watermarks.
  3. Consider using place cards. It makes things easier and it makes your dinner table much more personalized. Your guests will be happy that you’ve chosen a special place for them at your meal.
  4. Add some seasonal touches by putting centerpieces on your tables. Consider flowers, candles, pumpkins or faux leaves to give your table a festive look.
  5. Keep in mind that bread plates go on the left and drinks go on the right of each place setting.
  6. Wow your guests with a festive napkin fold! Try one of these ideas
  7. Make sure to have the guests water glasses filled before they sit down. Have a full water pitcher on hand in the fridge so you can easily refill.

Summer Recipe Contest – Winner #3

Congratulations, Michele Coffey!

Grilled Honey Lime Cilantro Chicken with Homemade Mango Salsa

Ingredients for Chicken:
2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts
¼ cup lime juice
½ cup honey
2 Tablespoons Soy Sauce
1 Tablespoon olive oil
2 garlic cloves, minced
½ cup cilantro, finely chopped
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon pepper

Ingredients for Mango Salsa:
a bag of frozen mangoes diced
1 small red onion diced
1 fresh lime
1 tbsp olive oil
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro

Put chicken in a ziplock bag. In a small bowl combine lime juice, honey, soy sauce, olive oil, garlic, cilantro, salt and pepper. Pour the sauce over the chicken and seal the bag and let marinade for 3 hours or overnight.

Preheat your grill to medium high heat. Grill each side of the chicken for about 3-4 minutes or until cooked throughout and no longer pink.

Meanwhile, to make the mango salsa,  mix all the ingredients together and top with fresh squeezed lime juice. Top each chicken breast with a generous scoop of salsa and serve with a side of rice or a side salad!

 

Summer Recipe Contest – Winner #2

Congratulations, Lisa Brock!

Strawberry Trifle

Cake:
1 box butter cake mix
1/2 cup butter
3 large eggs
1 cup milk

Pudding:
2 (3.4 oz) boxes vanilla pudding
4 cups milk
16 oz container sour cream
2 (8 oz) containers whipped topping

2 lbs of fresh strawberries
Mix cake mix, butter, eggs, and 1 cup milk and bake according to package directions in 13x9 inch pan. Cool completely for at least 1 hour.

Mix pudding, 4 cups milk, sour cream, and whipped topping. Reserve 1-1/2 cups whipped topping for top of trifle.

Remove tops from strawberries and slice strawberries into thin slices.

Using 3-1/2 quart trifle bowl. Tear cake into medium pieces. Begin layering cake, strawberries, and then pudding into the trifle bowl. Continue the layers, filling the bowl. Top entire dessert with the reserved layer of whipped topping. Slice a few strawberries for garnish. Refrigerate overnight (best results) or at least 4 hours before serving.

Summer Recipe Contest – Winner #1

Congratulations, Vijitha Regatti!

Spicy Garlic Barbecued Chicken

Ingredients:
2 tbsp vegetable oil
1 cup tomato paste
6 garlic cloves – finely chopped
1 tbsp red chili powder
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
2 tbsp soy sauce
2 tsp salt
1 cup of chopped fresh cilantro
2 finely chopped small jalapeños
3 lbs of chicken thighs – bone in
2 cups water

BBQ Sauce preparation:
Heat oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add tomato paste, garlic, cilantro, chili powder, & chopped jalapeños. Cook for about 5 min and then add black peppers, soy sauce, salt, and 2 cups of water. Stir occasionally until reduced by half, 10-20 min. Marinate chicken thighs with sauce 30 min before grilling.

Chicken preparation: Prepare grill on medium heat. Season chicken with homemade barbecue sauce and grill, turning occasionally for 15-20 min. Continue grilling, turning and basting with barbecue sauce, until chicken is cooked.

7 Tips For Packing Lunch for the Beach

We’re in the dog days of summer and that means we’re smack dab in the middle of beach season. Planning a trip this weekend? Try these tips for packing the best foods to enjoy while you’re sitting in the sand.

  1. Bring low maintenance fruits. Don’t bring anything that needs to be peeled as it leaves a mess and might leave you with sticky hands.
  2. If you’re packing a sandwich, think about making it a wrap. Wraps are easier to eat with one hand and can easily be kept in foil to avoid a mess.
  3. Bring a separate bag for your trash to avoid having wrappers blow away on the beach.
  4. Use ice packs instead of ice in your cooler to avoid a soggy mess at lunch time.
  5. Bring plenty of wet wipes for your hands to avoid getting sand on your finger foods.
  6. Prefer not to eat with your hands? Pack something in a plastic container that you can eat with a fork (think salads or burrito bowls – yum!)
  7. Make sure to have plenty of water to stay hydrated while you soak up the sun!