THE NIBBLE BLOG: Products, Recipes & Trends In Specialty Foods
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Archive for July, 2009

PRODUCT: Glutenfreeda Gluten Free Burritos

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A gluten free burrito bonanza. Photo by Hannah Kaminsky | THE NIBBLE.

People cutting out wheat don’t need to be deprived of their burritos. Glutenfreeda has introduced four frozen burrito flavors:

  • Breakfast Burrito
  • Chicken & Cheese
  • Vegetarian Bean & Cheese
  • Vegetarian & Dairy Free (vegan)

The burritos are easily microwaved. Breakfast Burrito, with well-seasoned ground beef and potatoes, is the most flavorful and our favorite, followed by Vegetarian Bean & Cheese. Chicken & Cheese and Vegetarian & Dairy Free needed spicing up with some condiments—but there’s always a ton of salsa around THE NIBBLE offices.

Glutenfreedas Burritos are made from all natural and organic ingredients and, of course, contain no trans fats, no hydrogenated oils and no GMOs. The four-ounce burritos have a MSRP of $2.99 to $3.29. See retailer locations.

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PRODUCT: Probiotic Iced Tea From Red Mango

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A glass of probiotic tea a day may keep the
doctor away. For that matter, so may a Red
Mango frozen yogurt!

What could be better than a refreshing glass of antioxidant iced tea? One that’s been fortified with probiotics! The Red Mango frozen yogurt chain has added probiotic-fortified iced teas to its menu of probiotic frozen yogurt. Probiotics, which are beneficial bacteria that live in the human gastrointestinal tract, are believed to benefit the immune system and help regulate digestion. A recent study conducted by Danisco shows that they may also reduce the incidence of cold and flu-like symptoms in children by 50%.

The all-natural teas, available in Lemonade Green Tea, Vanilla Black Tea and Wildberry Hibiscus Tea (herbal), use a new patented strain of probiotic called GanedenBC30, which will also be used in the frozen yogurts by September. This patented strain has been shown in clinical tests to have superior stability, which allows it to survive the journey into the digestive system, where it can be beneficial.

WHAT WE HADN’T THOUGHT ABOUT UNTIL TODAY: While many foods are labeled “probiotic,” and quite a few yogurts are probiotic or otherwise carry the “Live Active Cultures” seal from the National Yogurt Association, these terms only refer to the amount of live bacteria present in the manufactured yogurt. Many of these strains do not survive the journey through hostile environments to the stomach (temperature, acid, moisture levels). The genius of GanedenBC30 is that it is introduced to the body in spore form; when the spore gets to the intestines and deems that everything is A-OK, the beneficial bacteria inside are freed to multiply and do their thing.

Here are the four things to look for in an effective probiotic, according to Ganaden:

1. Survivability. The probiotic needs to survive the harsh acids of your stomach in order to arrive in your intestines.
2. Safety. An effective probiotic will have published clinical studies on its specific bacterial strain. Often, probiotic manufacturers claim safety studies conducted on strains different from their own.
3. Colonization. Even though a probiotic is able to survive your stomach acids and is safe, it still needs to be able to colonize, or multiply, to have a positive effect on your digestive health. Choose a probiotic that is able to colonize your intestinal tract with beneficial bacteria.
4. Quantity. Look for probiotic-fortified foods or supplements that contain at least one billion or more probiotic cells per serving.

The probiotic teas have five billion cells per serving and are made to order. The probiotics are mixed into the tea right before it is served, to ensure efficacy. They have fewer than 50 calories per 8-ounce serving and are sweetened with cane sugar. They are priced at $2.75 for a 16-ounce cup, and $3.25 for a 24-ounce cup. Our favorite was the Vanilla Black Tea—it had the most tea flavor. Wildberry Hibiscus was our second fave. We love hibiscus, and this tea is brewed with real hibiscus flowers. But the racy red flavor and acidity of real hibiscus is overpowered by the (admittedly more mainstream) wildberry flavor. Lemonade Green Tea needed double the amount of lemon flavor. These teas are brewed fresh and therefore not subject to a uniform quality control. We’ll have to try it again to see if Lemonade Green Tea was brewed with too little tea, or if the flavor itself needs some added oomph.

If you don’t live near a Red Mango, you can purchase GanadenBC30 in capsule form via Sustenex, which is carried by many drugstores and vitamin shops. A two-month supply is $19.95, and there’s a free offer at GetSustenex.com.

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Tip of the Day: Goat Cheese “Caprese”

Mozzarella, tomato and basil, the classic “Caprese salad” (named after the Italian island of Capri) is a popular first course. For a change, substitute goat cheese. Its creaminess pairs beautifully with the sweet acidity of tomatoes. For a beautiful dish, slice circles from a log of goat cheese and plate with sliced heirloom tomatoes and fresh basil leaves; drizzle with fine olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Variations include serving the sliced goat cheese with a “salad” of red and yellow tomato wedges (or sliced cherry tomatoes) in a red wine vinaigrette. Or, you can stack the cheese, basil and sliced tomatoes in a “napoleon.” When tomatoes aren’t in season, substitute roasted red peppers.

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CONTEST: Heinz Ketchup Wholesome Memories

Do you have happy ketchup memories….great cookouts, playing vampire with ketchup “blood,” the first time you made dinner for your parents? Share your memories, and maybe you’ll be one of the 57 who win a Growing Wholesome Memories Kit, with a digital camera to capture new family memories. The kit includes actress Josie Bissett’s book, Making Memories, Heinz Ketchup, kitchenware, recipes, HeinzSeeds, garden tools and more. Estimated value: $250. Entries are due by 8/31/09.

Visit the Heinz website for contest rules and to enter your memory. For each memory received, Heinz will make a donation to the National Gardening Association, a nonprofit organization that works to sustain the connection between people, plants and the environment through gardening.

  • Check out THE NIBBLE’s reviews of 42 different ketchups. Some are so wonderful, we recommend them as gifts.
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If you’ve got the memories, you could
take home the prize.

Heinz Ketchup Trivia:

  • Once advertised as the “slowest ketchup in the West,” Heinz Ketchup exits the glass bottle at 0.028 miles per hour.
  • The secret to releasing the ketchup more quickly from the glass bottle: Apply a firm tap to the “57” on the neck of the bottle.
  • The company no longer makes green ketchup—only red.

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TIP OF THE DAY: Spicing Up Store-Bought

If you buy store-made salads—tuna, chicken, egg, potato and macaroni salad, cole slaw and others— there’s generally room for improvement. Add diced onion for flavor and celery for crunch…lemon or lime zest or a squeeze of lemon or lime for spark…fresh tarragon, chives, basil or parsley for fresh herb flavor…dried celery seed or toasted sesame seed for nuance…or a tablespoon of mustard, wasabi, vinegar or capers for spice or tang. Select two or three seasonings to layer flavor.

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