Tag Archives: natural flavors

bouquet garni

11 Jan

333027318_4410ff1af9Bouquet garni in French means “garnished bouquet,” a bundle of herbs tied together with string, or added to a small sachet made of cheesecloth. The bouquet is then added to various dishes, notably soups, stews and sauces. It’s then removed right before serving.

Making your own bouquet is a fun and creative way to flavor your meals. There are endless combinations, but the most popular mix is parsley, thyme and bay leaves. Additional ingredients like citrus peels, peppercorns, tarragon, basil, rosemary, and even veggies like leeks, celery, carrots, onions make for a real pop in flavor!

Here’s a savory and wintry beef stew recipe, from food.com that uses a bouquet garni.

Inspiration for dinner tonight?

Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 1/2 lbs lean stewing beef, cut into 1 inch cubes
  • 1 medium yellow onion, peeled and finely chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic, peeled and minced
  • 1 cup beef broth
  • 1/2 cup dry red wine
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 4 slices orange rind, each about 2 inches or 1 teaspoon grated dried orange peel
  • 1 bouquet garni (thyme, parsley, rosemary, and bay leaf)
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper

Directions:

  • Brown beef in oil in a skillet or pressure cooker over medium-high heat.
  • Remove with a slotted spoon and set aside.
  • Reduce heat and add onion, garlic, and 2 T of the broth.
  • Cook, stirring, about 1 minute.
  • And remaining ingredients (except the beef).
  • Stir well to dissolve the tomato paste.
  • Add beef.
  • Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 45 minutes or so, until beef is tender.
  • Remove bouquet garni.
  • Serve!

Photo courtesy of salimfadhely

from slurpees to protein packs

4 Jan

5999371394_7faa983107Good news is on the horizon for 7-Eleven shoppers.

Shifting some of their focus away from sugar loaded sodas and slurpees, 7-Eleven announced that by 2015 they aim to have “20 percent of sales come from fresh foods, up from about 10 percent currently.”

Why are fresh food choices popping up all of a sudden? Joseph M. DePinto, the chief executive of 7-Eleven says, “We’re aspiring to be more of a food and beverage company, and that aligns with what the consumer now wants, which is more tasty, healthy, fresh food choices.” Another reason why fresh foods are desirable to 7-Eleven is due to the drop in cigarettes sales. To make up for those losses they are hoping that fresh food options will help sustain their profits.

An example of a fresh food product they are rolling out is their “bistro snack protein pack”, similar to the ones you find at Starbucks that include “cheddar cheese cubes, grapes, celery, baby carrots and hummus.” A much better choice when compared to their slurpees, packed with high fructose corn syrup, natural flavors, sodium benzoate, and lots of artificial food dyes.

As the food movement continues to gain momentum, we as consumers should uphold our voices and beliefs. As we vote with our dollars and forks, we will undoubtedly continue to see change unfold before our very eyes.

Photo courtesy of time_anchor