THE NIBBLE BLOG: Products, Recipes & Trends In Specialty Foods
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Archive for July 25, 2013

PRODUCT: Ghiradelli Chocolate Bars

Some people are purists; but when we enjoy a chocolate bar, we have a better time when it’s combined with another flavor. Ghirardelli has an armload of options in dark, milk and white chocolate: plump melt-in-your-mouth squares variously filled with caramel, mint, orange, raspberry and other favorites.

The company recently added two new flavors to the line: Mint Cookie and Toffee Crunch.

As a lover of all things mint, our favorite has got to be Mint Cookie. Milk chocolate with crunchy mint cookie filling, this chocolate bar is a major improvement on the iconic Girl Scout Thin Mint Cookie, with so much more (and better) chocolate.

You can reward yourself with a small piece or two each day: The bars are scored for portion control. If you don’t trust yourself to break off just a piece, several of the flavors are available in bags of pre-wrapped squares.

The 3.45-ounce bars have a suggested retail price of $2.79, and are available at retailers nationwide. If you buy them at Ghirardelli’s online store, you get five bars for the price of four.

 

Some of Ghirardelli’s extensive line of filled chocolate bars. Photo by Elivra Kalviste | THE NIBBLE.

 

FIND MORE OF OUR FAVORITE CHOCOLATE BARS & BON BONS.

  

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TIP OF THE DAY: Avocado Boat

An avocado boat, Southwestern style. Photo
courtesy Avocado Central.

 

If your principal enjoyment of avocado is in the form of guacamole, allow us to suggest an avocado “boat”—a stuffed avocado half.

When our grandmother held her weekly card parties with “the ladies,” their choice of luncheon was Avocado Boat With Crab Salad. Not surprisingly, that fancy recipe became a favorite first course when, in our first apartment, we staged dinner parties. Today it seems retro, but still delicious.

You can stuff anything into an avocado half, starting with scrambled eggs or tofu at breakfast, your favorite salad (egg, shrimp, tuna) at lunch, or anything as a first course at dinner (we’ve long since replaced the crab salad with ceviche, a contemporary take, as well as barley/quinoa/rice salad).

 
Here’s an easy vegetarian stuffed avocado for a first course, a light lunch or brunch. Try it, then create your own signature avocado boat recipe.

Large avocados are recommended for this recipe (a large avocado averages about eight ounces). If using smaller or larger fruits, adjust the other ingredients accordingly.

SOUTHWESTERN SALAD IN AN AVOCADO BOAT

Ingredients For 4 Servings

  • 2/3 cup black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1/2 cup corn, drained if canned
  • 1/2 cup shredded carrots, lightly packed
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves
  • 1/2 cup chunky salsa
  • 2 green onions, thinly sliced
  • 10 drops hot sauce
  • 2 ripe Hass avocados, halved and seeded
  • Garnish: radish or alfalfa sprouts or halved olives
  •  
    Preparation

    1. COMBINE beans, corn, carrots, cilantro, salsa, green onion and red pepper sauce in a bowl.

    2. SPOON into avocado boats. Garnish and serve.

    TIP: Cut a thin lengthwise slice off of the bottom of the avocado halves to make them stable on the plates.

    Find more avocado recipes at AvocadoCentral.com.

      

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    FOOD FUN: Bacon Cake Recipe

    For family fun or to bring to a party, how about a bacon cake?

    While some people can put bacon fat into the batter and/or the frosting, we prefer a standard yellow cake, cream cheese frosting and a topping of candied bacon.

    A sheet or loaf cake format is easier than a layer cake—and puts you closer to the bacon (a higher bacon:cake ratio).

    BACON CAKE RECIPE

    Ingredients

  • Yellow cake
  • Cream cheese frosting (recipe)
  • Candied bacon (recipe below)
  •  

    Make a bacon cake! Photo courtesy Boar’s Head.

  • Optional: 1 cup corn kernels (can be use raw or cooked fresh corn)
  •  
    Preparation

    1. BAKE your favorite yellow cake mix or recipe. Add optional corn kernels to batter.

    2. MAKE cream cheese frosting.

    3. MAKE candied maple bacon (recipe below).

    CANDIED BACON RECIPE

    Ingredients

  • 1 pound bacon
  • 1 cup honey or maple syrup
  •  
    Preparation

    1. PREHEAT oven to 400°F. Arrange bacon slices in single layer on foil-lined 15x10x1-inch baking pan. Bake in oven 15 minutes or until bacon edges begin to curl.

    2. REMOVE pan from oven. Carefully drain drippings and set aside for other use.

    3. MICROWAVE honey/maple syrup for 30 seconds, stirring after 15 seconds. Use a pastry brush to coat bacon. Bake 10 minutes longer or until bacon is browned and crisp.

    4. COOL bacon on wire rack. Break into bite-size pieces. If you have more candied bacon than you need to top the cake, well, that’s not really a problem, is it? Snack away!

      

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