Sunday, September 21, 2014

Moms really are the best cooks

I just ran across “Mothers are the Best Cooks,” a collection of recipes by St. Jude’s Mother’s Day Out and Preschool Families, Staff and Friends. That’s my church, St. Jude Thaddeus Catholic Community in Beaumont. I love a good spiral that’s full of good stuff from people you know. Now’s the season for orange food and this one from the book features sweet potatoes in a savory way with another favorite of mine, corn. For information on  the book, call St. Jude Mothers Day Out at (409) 866-4722, ext. 238.

Basil Pecan Sweet Potato Bake
Susan Wilkerson
3 15-ounce cans sweet corn, drained
1 half cup Half & Half
2 tablespoons butter, softened
2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
1 fourth teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 fourth teaspoon ground nutmeg
Salt and pepper to taste
1 half cup chopped pecans
In medium mixing bowl, combine all ingredients, except pecans. Blend with mixer or food processor, transfer to prepared 9- by 9-inch baking dish. Smooth the surface. Top with chopped d pecans. Cover and bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes. Remove cover and bake another 10 minutes.

Whataburger lets you take the sauce home
Breaking news from Whataburger and H-E-B , two Texas favorites. The stores are selling bottles of sauces for you to dress up your veggies, burgers and fries they way you might if you were under the orange, pointy roof. Here’s what I’m trying on eggs, baked potatoes and romaine lettuce:

Peppercorn Ranch
• This one-of-a-kind ranch makes everything better. Loaded with cracked peppercorns, it adds a rich flavor to sandwiches, salads and much more.

Creamy Pepper Sauce
• A unique blend of peppers and spices, this sauce was made famous on Whataburger’s Patty Melt and goes great on just about everything.

Jalapeño Ranch
• This spicy, kicked-up ranch was made famous on Whataburger’s Monterey Melt. Great as a dip or dressing, the tasty blend of spices and jalapeños goes great with chicken, beef and pork.

Honey Mustard
• This sauce is a delicious combination of sweetness and tanginess, perfect for dipping chicken strips or adding flavor to salads.
There are other Whataburger condiments in the stores, but that doesn’t keep people away from their favorites in restaurants.

Take a powder every morning
Instead of your aromatic, hot brew, you could have a teaspoon of coffee powder to wake you up. Navitas Naturals has launched an organic green coffee powder that it mixes into smoothies and desserts to offer a mild flavor and an energizing antioxidant-rich superfood from raw, unroasted Arabica beans.
They’re handpicked in Peru to arrive at your table. I blended some into banana-matcha smoothies every day for a week and felt great. Did you know this product existed? I did not, but I trust Navitas Naturals to travel the world and keep me healthy. Here’s some caffeine and dietary fiber from an unexpected source. Add it to flours and other beverages, especially those with chocolate. Makers say that due to its effect on metabolism, it is often used as apart of a balanced weight management program.

This powder is certified organic, non-GMO, raw, kosher and gluten-free. Unlike other green coffee in the marketplace, Navitas Green Coffee Powder is free of fillers, binders and excipients. Offered in a multiple serving 4-ounce resealable pouch for a SRP of $14.99, Navitas Naturals Green Coffee Powder and other Navitas products are available at

Hemp snack
How is your hemp snack like mother’s milk? In this case, goodies from Nutiva, the world’s leading brand of Coconut, Chia, Hemp & Red Palm organic superfoods, this reference means more than these bites are healthy, sweet and comforting. Billed as an anytime treat, Nutiva’s new O’Coconut products are made  from lightly sweetened organic, fair trade coconut and have only 60 calories each.
I like the crunchy staying power of O’Coconut Classic and O’Coconut Hemp & Chia with l nutty flavor and the nutritional benefits of Omega-3s. Carry some with you on your hike or errand trip. I love them, and here’s what the makers say about their makeup: 
“Coconut oil is about 50 percent lauric acid, a nourishing medium-chain fatty acid found in mother's milk. Each O’Coconut snack boasts a 1.5 teaspoon serving of coconut oil.  All Nutiva coconut products are made from fresh coconuts and are certified organic and verified non-GMO.”

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