Fab Freeze

BlueberryLavenderPoundCake

Frozen fruit is fantastic because it’s ready to use when you are. Plus, it’s frozen at the peak of flavor for maximum deliciousness. Although great in smoothies, we also like to add frozen fruit to make something even more magical, like this elegant springtime cake.

Wild Blueberry and Lavender Pound Cake

Ingredients
2 cups sugar, plus about 1½ tbsp. for dusting pan
1 cup butter, softened
4 eggs
1 tbsp. Blueberry Vinegar (see separate recipe) or apple cider vinegar
2 tsp. Spicely Organic Lavender
3 cups plus 1 tbsp. flour, divided
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
2 cups frozen blueberries
Blueberry Port Sauce (recipe follows, optional)
Whipped cream and grated lime zest (optional)

Directions
Prep: 20 minutes, Cook: 1 hour, 10 minutes, Serves: 12 to 16

  1. Preheat oven to 325°F and spray a bundt pan with nonstick cooking spray; dust with about 1½ tbsp. sugar.
  2. Cream remaining sugar and butter in the large bowl of an electric mixer on medium speed for about 5 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Mix in vinegar and lavender. Mix in 3 cups flour, baking soda and salt. Mix berries in a small bowl with remaining flour and gently fold into batter.
  3. Pour into prepared pan, smoothing top with spatula. Bake for about 1 hour and 10 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, tenting loosely with foil if top browns too quickly. Let cool for 15 minutes before inverting onto a baking rack and removing pan.
  4. Cool completely before serving with Blueberry Port Sauce: Combine 3 cups frozen blueberries, 3/4 cup each: sugar and port (substitute grape or cherry juice, if you like) and 3 tbsp. each: cornstarch and butter in a small saucepan. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring constantly, for about 4 minutes or until sauce begins to boil and thicken. Serve warm over slices of cake with whipped cream and lime zest, if you like.

Nutritional Information:
(110 g, based on 14): 360 calories, 5 g protein, 15 g total fat (9 g sat., 0 g trans), 52 g carbohydrate, 1 g fiber, 31 g sugar, 105 mg cholesterol, 290 mg sodium, 8 points

Beer Pairing: Blue Moon – The citrus and spice flavors of this Belgian-style White pair well with blueberry cobblers and this cake.

Whiskey Wonder

WhiskeyPork

As you’re gearing up for St. Patrick’s Day, we have a few tasty ideas for you, like this mouthwatering use for an Irish whiskey.

Whiskey Pork with Apples

3 lbs. boneless Raley’s Fresh Pork tenderloin
1 lb. Raley’s Thick Cut Bacon
3/4 cup Bushmills or Jameson Irish Whiskey
1/2 cup chicken stock
2 tbsp. honey
1 tbsp. spicy brown mustard
2 medium green apples, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
2 shallots, thinly sliced
Freshly ground sea salt and pepper to taste
Chopped fresh rosemary (optional)

Directions
Prep: 20 minutes, Cook: about 45 minutes, Serves: 8

  1. Wrap pork tenderloin in bacon, securing ends with toothpicks. Cook in a very large skillet over medium-high heat for 10 minutes or until nicely browned on all sides. Remove from skillet and drain excess grease.
  2. Add remaining ingredients except rosemary to skillet and bring to a boil. Place pork back in skillet and tent with foil. Cook over medium-low heat for 30 minutes more or until pork reaches 145°F internally, turning once or twice. Remove pork and keep warm; cook sauce until excess liquid has cooked off and it’s slightly thickened.
  3. Remove toothpicks from pork and slice 1/2-inch thick. Transfer to a platter and sprinkle with rosemary, if you like. Serve with sauce.

Nutritional Information:
534 calories, 39 g protein, 30 g total fat (10 g sat., 0 g trans), 13 g carbohydrate, 1 g fiber, 10 g sugar, 128 mg cholesterol, 595 mg sodium, 13 points

Pineapple Party

Pineapple

It’s primetime for pineapple and we’ve got two delicious ideas to perk up any day.

Warm Roasted Elderflower Pineapple with Goat CheeseElderflowerPineappleGoatCheese
Prep: 15 minutes, Bake: 30 to 35 minutes, Serves: 8

  1. Toss 1 cup small pieces fresh pineapple, 1/4 cup St-Germain liqueur and 1 tbsp. butter on a small baking sheet. Roast at 375°F for 30 to 35 minutes or until lightly browned, stirring occasionally.
  2. Spoon over a 5-oz. log of goat cheese (in our Deli) and sprinkle with 2 tbsp. toasted chopped walnuts and fresh thyme leaves. Serve with crisped baguette slices.

Pepper Pineapple Salmon
Taking its cue from harissa paste, this dish perfectly complements the sweet topping. Grilled chicken or pork chops also work great in this recipe.

Prep: 20 minutes, Cook: 6 to 8 minutes, Serves: 4PepperPineappleSalmon

1 large red bell pepper
1½-inch thick slices fresh pineapple
2½-inch thick slices red onion
1 tbsp. red wine vinegar
1 tsp. sugar
1/4 tsp. salt
1 clove garlic, minced
2 tbsp. butter, melted
2 tbsp. pineapple juice
1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper
1/2 tsp. ground coriander
1/2 tsp. garlic salt
4 salmon fillets (about 1½ lbs. total)
Hot, cooked couscous (optional)

  1. Grill pepper, pineapple and onion until nicely charred. Remove stem and seeds from pepper and cut into quarters; setting aside 1 quarter.
  2. Remove skin and core from pineapple and chop coarsely. Coarsely chop larger amount of bell pepper and onion and place in a small bowl with vinegar, sugar, salt and garlic. Cover and chill until ready to serve (may be prepared 1 day ahead).
  3. Chop reserved pepper until it’s almost a paste. Place in a small bowl and stir in butter, juice and seasonings.
  4. Cook salmon on a well-oiled grill for 3 to 4 minutes on each side or until it’s cooked to your liking. Transfer to 4 plates and immediately top with equal amounts of butter and pineapple mixture. Serve over couscous if you like, topped with pineapple relish.

Raley’s at 80: A Classic Sweet from the ’40s

RITZApplePie

Raley’s is celebrating its 80th birthday this year – you know who else is? Ritz crackers. This classic recipe from the Kraft archives helped those rationing in World War II to still indulge in a sweet treat.

RITZ® Mock Apple Pie
Courtesy of Kraft.

Pastry for 2-crust 9-inch pie
36 RITZ Crackers, coarsely broken (about 1¾ cups crumbs)
2 cups sugar
2 tsp. cream of tartar
1¾ cups water
Grated peel of 1 lemon
2 tbsp. lemon juice
2 tbsp. butter or margarine
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon

Prep: 45 minutes, Cook: 1 hour, 20 minutes, Serves: 10

  1. Preheat oven to 425°F. Roll out half of the pastry and place in 9-inch pie plate. Place cracker crumbs in crust; set aside.
  2. Mix sugar and cream of tartar in a medium saucepan. Gradually stir in water until well blended. Bring to a boil on high heat. Reduce heat to low; simmer for 15 minutes.
  3. Add lemon peel and juice; let cool. Pour syrup over cracker crumbs. Dot with butter; sprinkle with cinnamon.
  4. Roll out remaining pastry; place over pie. Trim; seal and flute edges. Slit top crust to allow steam to escape. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes or until crust is crisp and golden. Cool completely.

Nutrition per serving: 330 calories, 2 g protein, 11 g total fat (3 g sat., 0 g trans), 58 g carbohydrate, 1 g fiber, 42 g sugar, 50 mg cholesterol, 240 mg sodium, 6 points

Raley’s at 80: Pie High

SweetBeefPotPie

As we look back (did we mention it’s our 80th birthday?), we’re also looking forward, so it’s the perfect time for a pair of hearty pot pie recipes.

Classic Pot Pie: Homestyle Chicken and Vegetable Pot Pie
Packed with chicken and vegetables, this recipe makes two pot pies. Bake both to feed a crowd or freeze one for a quick dinner another time!

Prep: 10 minutes, Cook: 45 minutes, Serves: 12

2 tbsp. butter
4 medium carrots, peeled and sliced
4 stalks celery, sliced
3 cups quartered fresh mushrooms
1 cup frozen pearl onions
1 cup corn
1 cup peas
2 (12-oz.) jars chicken gravy
1/2 cup white wine or chicken broth
2 tsp. herbes de Provence or dried thyme
1/4 tsp. pepper
2 lbs. Raley’s boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cooked and shredded
1 (15-oz.) package rolled pie crusts 

1. Preheat oven to 400°F.

2. Melt butter in a large skillet. Add carrots and cook, stirring frequently, for 5 minutes. Add celery and mushrooms; cook for 5 minutes more. Stir in remaining ingredients except crusts and cook over medium heat until hot and bubbly.

3. Pour into 2 deep dish pie plates or 9-inch baking dishes. (At this point, one pie may be wrapped tightly and frozen to bake later.) Drape pastry over the top of each dish and cut several slits in the top. Bake for 30 minutes or until crust is golden brown.

Nutrition per serving: 255 calories, 22 g protein, 10 g fat, 18 g carbohydrate, 3 g fiber, 50 mg cholesterol, 525 mg sodium

Contemporary Pot Pie: Sweet Beef Pot Pie with Plantain Pastry
Prep: 30 minutes, Cook: 2 hours, 45 minutes, Serves: 6 to 8

Filling:
2 tbsp. olive oil
2 lbs. trimmed Raley’s Black Angus Beef chuck, cubed
1 large onion, coarsely chopped
1 red bell pepper, stemmed, seeded  and diced
4 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup flour
1¼ cups ginger beer
2  tbsp. soy sauce
1 to 2 tbsp. Sriracha sauce

Crust:
1/4 cup butter, cubed
1 cup flour
1/2  cup mashed very ripe plantain*
3/4  tsp. sea salt
4 tbsp. ice water

1. Preheat oven to 400°F. Heat oil in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Add beef and cook until well browned on all sides. Add vegetables and cook for 5 minutes more.

2. Sprinkle with flour and stir to coat. Add ginger beer, soy sauce and Sriracha sauce. Bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer for 2 hours or until beef is tender. Transfer to a deep dish pie plate.

3. Meanwhile, mix all crust ingredients with a fork until mixture resembles course crumbs. Stir in ice water. Place on a lightly floured surface and knead, adding more flour as needed to form a soft dough. Let stand for 10 minutes, then roll out 1/8-inch thick. Cut into circles using a 2-inch cutter. Lay over filling, overlapping slightly. (Or place uncut dough over filling.)

4. Bake for 30 minutes, until crust is golden brown.

Nutrition per serving: 380 calories, 27 g protein, 16 g total fat (7 g sat.), 30 g carbohydrate, 2 g fiber, 9 g sugar, 87 mg cholesterol, 618 mg sodium, 10 points

*Very ripe plantains will feel soft and have black peels.

Raley’s at 80: Raise Your Glass

SaltyChien

Not only were our stores born in the ’30s, so were these three classic cocktails that we’ve updated for the 21st-century.

Salty Dog
Our spin on this classic, the Salty Chien, gets a lovely lavender lift from herbes de Provence-infused sea salt.

Wet the rim of a highball glass (or a low glass); roll edge of glass in Raley’s Herbes de Provence Sea Salt. Add 3 oz. Pellegrino Pompelmo or your favorite grapefruit soda, 1 oz. Hendrick’s gin and ice. Makes 1 drink.

Bellini
A traditional Bellini sparkles with pureed white peaches and Prosecco, but we like to shake it up with our Bella Bellini, which calls for tropical guava nectar.

Mix together 3½ oz. chilled sparkling wine, Champagne or Prosecco and 2 oz. chiled guava nectar. Pour into a chilled champagne glass and serve.

Bloody Mary
We added a little local flair by focusing on extra spice and garlic in our spin, the Gilroy Maria.

Combine 2 cups tomato juice or V-8, 1 cup superpremium lemon or citron vodka, 4 tsp. minced garlic (adjust garlic to your personal taste!), 3 tsp. lemon juice, 2 tsp. balsamic vinegar, 2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce and 2 dashes Chipotle Tabasco Sauce in a large pitcher. Pour into 4 tall ice-filled glasses and garnish each with a celery stick.

Orange Bowl

CitrusOranges

The very first Raley’s Supermarket was opened 80 years ago in 1935. What else happened in 1935? Amelia Earhart flied solo across the Pacific Ocean, Babe Ruth hit his final homerun of his career (714th), Elvis Presley was born and the first canned beer was sold. Did you know that the first Orange Bowl was played in 1935? The Orange Bowl may be played in Florida, but we think California is the land of citrus.

Winter is the peak season for growing oranges and other citrus fruits. Chances are, you have a citrus tree growing in your very own backyard. Navels and Valencias are classic favorites but we love the seasonal flavors of Moros and Cara Caras. Let’s go over the juicy details of California’s favorite fruit.

Navel Oranges
Navels are a classic favorite and are available from November through May. They are sweet, juicy and great for eating and juicing.

Valencia Oranges
Valencia oranges are smaller than Navels and are known as summer oranges because they are available from February through October. They are deliciously sweet and juicy. Perfect for juicing!

Moro Oranges
Seasonal oranges like Moro oranges are available from January through April. Moro oranges, or blood oranges, have a bright red interior that sets it apart from other oranges. Anthocyanin, what gives Moros their red color, is a powerful antioxidant that neutralizes the effects of free radicals. We love Moro oranges for their ruby color and exceptional taste!

Cara Cara Oranges
Cara Caras are of the navel variety but with a pink interior. These oranges are rich in Vitamins A, C fiber and lycopene. They are sweet, zingy and available from January through April.

What’s the difference between oranges, tangerines and mandarins?
It’s a common misconception that oranges, tangerines and mandarins are the same fruit. All are citrus fruits, but are very different in size, flavor and varieties. Tangerines are smaller than oranges and have a looser peel. They are often sold with stems and leaves attached. Mandarins, like Gold Nugget Mandarins, are considered to be exceptionally flavorful and delicious. Their rough skin makes it easier to peel.

Skinny Academy Awards Party

Expert Patty Mastracco shows Paul Robbins of Fox 40 News how to keep your Academy Awards party healthy! Find these recipes and more in our Recipe Center on raleys.com

Screen Shot 2015-02-20 at 9.32.08 AM

Get Bowled Over

BeefRamenKimchi

Happy Year of the Sheep! Yup, it’s New Year again – Lunar New Year, that is! Pick up the latest issue of Something Extra magazine for 8 mouthwatering soups from Erin Quon to celebrate the New Year. Something Extra program members get 2 FREE copies. Not signed up yet? Head here.

Here’s a taste of what you’ll find!

Beef Ramen with Kimchee
If you can’t find kimchee in our Produce Dept., you can always make your own from our quick kimchee recipe.

Prep: 30 minutes, Cook: 1 hour, 30 minutes, Serves: 6  

4 lbs. beef bones (ask our butchers!)
5 quarts water
1 lb. Raley’s Black Angus Beef chuck roast
4 cloves garlic, smashed
3 yellow onions, halved
3 (3-inch) pieces ginger, peeled and halved
4 star anise
1/4 cup fish sauce (in our Asian foods section)
3 tbsp. brown sugar
3 tbsp. soy sauce
1 tsp. sesame oil
1 lb. dried rice noodles, soaked and drained (or cooked and drained egg noodles)
1/4 lb. Raley’s Black Angus Beef sirloin steak, thinly sliced

Toppers (optional):
4 green onions, thinly sliced
4 limes, each cut in 4 wedges
3 serrano chilies, thinly sliced
1/2 lb. bean sprouts
1/2 bunch cilantro, roughly chopped
2 cups kimchee (in our Produce Dept.)

  1. Preheat oven to 375˚F. Place bones on a baking sheet and roast for 1 hour
    or until golden.
  2. Meanwhile, bring water to a boil in a large stockpot. Add roast, garlic, onion and ginger and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 1 hour. Skim surface of stock and discard foam.
  3. When bones are golden brown, transfer to simmering broth. Repeat skim after 10 minutes. Simmer for 45 minutes or until roast is tender. Remove meat and set aside.
  4. Add star anise, fish sauce and brown sugar; simmer for another 30 minutes.
  5. Strain broth into another large stockpot, removing solids and bring back to a boil. Add soy sauce and sesame oil. Shred reserved beef and add to pot; cook for 10 minutes.
  6. To serve, place noodles and steak into bowls. Ladle boiling broth onto noodles and garnish with desired toppers, if you like.

Nutrition per serving: 477 calories, 20 g protein, 11 g total fat (4 g sat.), 72 g carbohydrate, 0 g fiber, 7 g sugar, 70 mg cholesterol, 1471 mg sodium, 12 points

*This recipe calls for raw meat. Avoid cross-contamination by washing your hands after handling raw meats. Use separate utensils and cutting boards for raw meat and veggies. Make sure your raw meat reaches 145°F before eating.

Turnip Power

Beets have had their moment in the spotlight, and sweet potatoes, too. We think it’s time to celebrate another unsung root veggie, the terrific turnip.

This veggie has been eaten since prehistoric times, and is utilized all over the world, from Japan to Brazil. What makes it so appealing? A little peppery, a little sweet, and hearty enough to fill out soups and stews. Think of a milder radish with a hint of cabbage.

The turnip’s root (the bulbous part that you’ll peel and cook with) is also high in vitamin C. It’s top, or turnip greens, are a good source of vitamins A, C and K, plus folate, calcium and lutein. You may have seen turnip greens utilized extensively in Southern cooking. Turnip greens are typically more bitter than the more common collard greens.

When you’re choosing a turnip, look for a firm one with unblemished skin. And make sure you slice off the root end before cooking.

Here’s one more fun fact: The distinctive purple on a turnip comes from where the root has been exposed to sunlight. Otherwise, it is a creamy white.

Ready to turn up the turnip? Here are 10 to try: