THE NIBBLE BLOG: Products, Recipes & Trends In Specialty Foods


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TIP OF THE DAY: Flavored Cream Cheese


If you don’t have time to make scallion
cream cheese, do the next best thing: Snip
chives into a small dish so that guests can
sprinkle them on top of the cream cheese. It takes two minutes to wash and snip the
chives.

 

When we serve flavored cream cheeses at brunch, the scallion cream cheese is the first to disappear. But commercial brands are gummy and specialty store fresh-made is pricey.

Here’s our trick:

  • Buy plain cream cheese, preferably organic.
  • Using electric beaters on slow, blend 8 ounces of cream cheese with 2 tablespoons of sour cream (you can add more for a more fluid spread).
  • Add 2 tablespoons of chopped scallions, or more to taste. That’s it!
  •  
    We also love olive cream cheese:

  • Purée roasted peppers and, instead of the sour cream, blend 2 tablespoons or more of purée to taste.
  • Add chopped green olives stuffed with pimento.
  •  
    Strawberries, bananas, guava, papaya, mango and pineapple (canned) are great blend-ins for sweet spreads.

    Find more of our favorite dips and spreads in the Salsas, Dips & Spreads Section of THE NIBBLE online magazine.

     

      

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    Zippier Grilled Cheese Sandwich Recipes For National Grilled Cheese Day

    Today is a holiday you can really sink your teeth into: National Grilled Cheese Day!

    In fact, April is also National Grilled Cheese Month—a much tastier concept than Taxes Are Due Month.

    Grilled cheese sandwiches are one of our favorite comfort foods—for lunch, light supper or snacks.

    You can cut them in quarters for smaller portions with soup or salad; and can cut them into bite-size squares held together with toothpicks for casual hors d’oeuvres.

    Ask at your cheese counter for tastier alternatives to American cheese, and try them out to find your favorites.

    We love smoked mozzarella and Jarlsberg, a Swiss-type cheese from Norway; and we find that making our sandwiches in a panini press in the best method.

    Otherwise, a frying pan will do just fine.

    Assemble the sandwiches and butter the outsides with softened butter. Fry, and when the bottom slices are golden brown (2 to 3 minutes), flip them over, press down with lightly with a spatula and cook for another 2 to 3 minutes.

    We like tomatoes on our grilled cheese sandwiches: We first sprinkle them with oregano or marinate them briefly in a vinaigrette for added flavor.

    But don’t stop there.

    We have a dozen gourmet grilled cheese recipes for you, along with tips on making the perfect grilled cheese sandwiches.

    Read the full article and pick your favorite recipes.

    We’ve been making two a day for lunch at THE NIBBLE offices, and the voting is intense.

    (HINT: If you love blue cheese, the two blue cheese recipes are a slam dunk…except for the sweet mascarpone and dulce de leche recipe. Testing and voting is HARD WORK!)

    Get the gang together and make all 12 sandwiches, for one heck of a grilled cheese-a-thon.

     


    [1] Gouda cheese and asparagus (photo © Veldhuyzen Cheese).


    [2] Or, have your grilled cheese plain and simple (photo © My Toque).

     

      

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    THIS WEEKEND IN NYC: Coffee & Tea Festival

    Tavalon Tea
    Part of the Tea Of The Month Club offering from TavalonTea.com, an exhibitor at the show.
      If you have a passion for coffee or tea, hopefully you’ll be in New York City this weekend. Then, you can attend the 3rd Annual Coffee & Tea Festival NYC. You can even save $5.00 (half the ticket price) when you buy tickets online (enter code FESTIVAL or NIBBLE). Some of the area’s finest NYC coffee, tea and confectionery companies will be showcasing and sampling their wares to enthusiasts who like the finer things (and yes, you can buy what you like). The 30,000-square-foot exhibit space will be loaded with:
    – Coffee and tea sampling
    – Lectures / Classes
    – Shopping
    – Contests
    – Demonstrations
    – Art
    – Java/Tea Lounge with music &
    entertainment
    If some in your crew don’t like coffee and tea, the area is a shopping mecca, on both the Sixth Avenue (large chains) and Seventh Avenue (boutique) sides. Come join us: THE NIBBLE staff will be there!
    11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday, April 12
    11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday, April 13

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    TIP OF THE DAY: Water Glass Garnishes

    Take a tip from stylish restaurants and add slices of lemon, lime or cucumber (or a plump strawberry) to the rim of water glasses.

    After you’ve cut the slices, make an additional cut from the center to the edge, and use that notch to affix the fruit to the rim.
    Guests can remove and float the pieces in their water for added flavor.

    If you keep a water pitcher at the table, citrus or cucumber slices and strawberries provide flavor and look elegant inside, too.

    Read about more glamorous garnishes for every food on your table in THE NIBBLE online magazine.

      Lemon Rosemary Water
    Cocktail? No! It’s a healthy, calorie-free glass of water, dressed up with glamorous garnishes (photo Kelly Cline | IST).
     

      

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    PRODUCT REVIEW: The World’s Best White Chocolate

    Pierre Marcolini White Chocoalte Bar
    Looking like the Marilyn Monroe pinup of white chocolate, Pierre Marcolini’s white chocolate bar truly is eye candy.
      If you don’t already love white chocolate, our review of the best white chocolate bars in the world will make a believer out of you. You’ll also learn why you may not have enjoyed the white chocolate you’ve had in the past, and how to select the best bars. With Mother’s Day fast approaching, if you’re stuck for a gift or an activity, order one of each bar and have a white chocolate tasting party (read our instructions). Read the full review, and check out the Chocolate Section of THE NIBBLE online magazine for many more of the world’s best chocolates.
     

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