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THE NIBBLE BLOG: Products, Recipes & Trends In Specialty Foods
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TOP PICK OF THE WEEK: Katie’s Mustard Slaw

We love Katie’s Mustard Slaw so much, that we’re reprising our 2013 article in order to introduce it to every NIBBLE reader.

Prior to the beginning of Memorial Day, Independence Day, and Labor Day cookout events, we want everyone to experience it. At $4.99 a jar, you can even give it as party favors and stocking stuffers, down the road.

It’s longer name is Katie’s Home Style, Old-Fashioned, Pool-Room Mustard Slaw, but that’s a mouthful.

Speaking of mouthfuls, we eat it from the jar before we get to slather it on our favorite mustard-friendly foods.

We taste a lot of products, and this blend of mustard with bell peppers, cabbage, carrots, onions and vinegar, spices, jalapeños and a bit of salt and sugar is a winner (and very low-calorie to eat from the jar).

Katie’s mustard slaw a complex layering of flavors, with a beautiful texture and a spicy kick. It’s a riff on chow-chow*, a Nova Scotian and American pickle relish made from a combination of vegetables; and a relative of British piccalilli (which has a cauliflower base).

In Alabama and Tennessee, the condiment is called chow-chow, mustard slaw or pool room slaw. It has been made and sold by southern Tennessee Amish for some 100 years (source).

Get yours here. You’ll be very happy! (Scroll to the bottom of the page.)
 
 
HOW TO ENJOY KATIE’S MUSTARD SLAW

It’s a wonderfully versatile condiment, zingy and satisfying. Use it:

  • On hot dogs and burgers
  • On meat-based sandwiches: bologna, ham, roast beef, submarines, turkey
  • With roasted or barbecue chicken, beef or pork
  • With grilled or fried fish
  • With eggs, including mixed into deviled eggs
  • Mixed into coleslaw and other slaws
  • Mixed into potato salad or egg salad
  • Mixed into a vinaigrette
  • As a dip with chips, crudités, pretzels or tortilla chips (heavenly with soft pretzels), served straight or mixed with mayonnaise, plain yogurt or sour cream
  • With vegetables: greens, mashed potatoes, beans (such as pinto beans)
  • On toast or crackers
  • As a condiment with cheese, paté and charcuterie
  •  
    …and with countless other foods. Don’t hesitate to dip a spoon into the jar for a mini snack.

     

    Katie's Mustard Slaw
    [1] Katie’s Original Mustard Slaw (all photos © Katie’s).

    Katie's Jalapeno Mustard Slaw
    [2] Jalapeño Mustard Slaw.


    [3] Hot dogs are just the beginning.

     
     
    A DELIGHT FOR WEIGHT WATCHERS

    A tablespoon is just 10 calories, with zero calories from fat, 40mg sodium and 1 mg sugar. It’s a caloric bargain, waiting to add great flavor to your meals. All of the vegetables that Katie’s uses are bought fresh from a local farmers market.

    Now the challenge: How to get it. Distribution is limited.

    To order, head to KatiesSlaw.comand scroll to the bottom of the page.

    If you have to order a case, don’t worry: You’ll go through it quickly, and be happy to have jars for house gifts and stocking stuffers.

     
     
    ABOUT KATIE’S

    Katie is Katie Kilburn of Florence, Alabama. She began to make slaw and relish products for her family and the local high school football concession stand, using her mother-in-law’s recipe.

    With the help of the Shoals Commercial Culinary Center, fortuitously located in her hometown, she was able to tap into resources to make more slaw and relish for commercial sale.

    The business is now owned by Katie’s daughter Teresa and husband Derek.

    Anyone who tastes it will love it. Hand this review to your favorite retailer and ask that they bring in a few cases—and watch them fly off the shelves.

    ________________
    *According to Wikipedia, chow-chow is “regionally associated” with the Southern United States, Pennsylvania, New Mexico, the Appalachian Mountains and soul food. The recipes vary greatly; some are sweeter, others more savory. The name is said to derive from the French word for cabbage, chou (pronounced “shoe”). It was popular with the Acadians of Nova Scotia, descendants of the 17th-century French colonists, who emigrated to Louisiana.

      

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    SPRING RECIPE: Pasta Primavera Alfredo

    Cooking dinner every day during quarantine, we’ve found spring pasta and pizza recipes that are a delightful break between the standards.

    We’ve been making “Spring Pizza”” once a week. It has spring peas and tendrils, sugar snap peas and watercress.

    When we have them in the fridge, we add asparagus, too.

    Now for a tandem recipe from Delallo: Fettuccine Alfredo “primavera.”

    Although it isn’t part of the original Fettuccine Alfredo recipe, we add green peas and garnish with snipped chives or parsley to add a bit of color and flavor to the super-rich sauce.

    (Fettuccine Alfredo was created by a restaurateur to give his pregnant-and-not-hungry wife a bland dish that she could eat. Here’s the story)

    It uses arugula, asparagus, sugar snap peas and frozen peas and is simple to make. You don’t even have to make Alfredo sauce: Buy a jar instead.

    DeLallo also switched the fettuccine for gemelli (photo #2).
     
     
    ABOUT GEMELLI

    DeLallo chose gemelli, the Italian word for twins, for this twisted pasta short cut.

    However, gemelli are not twin tubular strands twisted together. Look closely: You’ll see that they are a single S-shaped strand twisted into a spiral.

    The shape allows sauces to better attach to the entwined pasta’s crannies—as opposed to sliding off flat fettuccine—increasing the flavor in each bite.

    There are approximately 350 pasta shapes in Italy and more than four times the different names for them (source).

    Each region had its own dialect; and while flat cuts like spaghetti and linguine were pretty universal, different regions developed some unique cuts as well.

    In the days before mass communication, few people knew what other regions were making.

    Gemelli are are related to fusilli as another complex helix. In this case, always with two blades, but the blades are curved until they almost enclose themselves to make tubes – somewhat like twisted casarecce.

    Gemelli pairs nicely with light tomato sauces, dairy-based sauces, oil-based sauces, and in pasta salads (source).

    Similar shapes are caserecce, rotini, strozzapreti and trofie.

    Ingredients For 4-6 Servings

  • 1 pound gemelli pasta
  • 1 jar Alfredo sauce
  • 8 ounces asparagus, trimmed and cut into 1/4 inch pieces
  • 8 ounces sugar snap peas, trimmed
  • 1 cup frozen peas, thawed (substitute the costlier fresh peas if you like)
  • 1 (12-ounce) jar or can artichoke hearts, halved
  • 2 cups arugula
  • 1 cup pine nuts, toasted (how to toast nutshow to toast nuts)
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  •  


    [1] Pasta Primavera Alfredo, made with gemelli pasta twists, below (photo © DeLallo).


    [2] Gemelli (“twins”) pasta: One strand twisted into an S-shape (photo © J. Irkaejc | iStock photoiStock photo).


    [3] Alfredo sauce ((photo © DeLallo).

     
    Preparation

    1. BRING a large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook the pasta according to package instructions. Drain. Meanwhile…

    2. HEAT the alfredo sauce in a medium saucepan over low heat until cooked through, about 10 minutes.

    3. PREPARE 2 bowls with ice baths. Bring a medium pot of salted water to a boil. Cook the asparagus in the boiling water for 2 minutes; then transfer to an ice bath using a slotted spoon. Add the sugar snap peas to the water and cook for 2 minutes; then transfer to the other ice bath using a slotted spoon.

    4 COMBINE the pasta, asparagus, sugar snap peas, artichokes and sauce in a large bowl. Toss well to combine and season with salt and pepper.

    5. DIVIDE the mixture among the plates and top with the lemon zest and pine nuts.

      

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    FOOD 101: The History Of Strawberries For National Strawberry Month

    Fresh Strawberries
    [1] Fresh strawberries (photo © InHarvest).

    Strawberry Lemonade
    [2] Strawberry lemonade (photo © La Cocina Color Lila).

    Strawberry Milkshake
    [3] Strawberry milkshake (photo © Friendship Dairies).


    [4] A flowering strawberry plant. The fruit grows from the flower (photo © John-Mark Smith | UnsplashUnsplash).


    [5] Strawberry plant (photo © Chris Yang | UnsplashUnsplash).

     

    May is National Strawberry Month. Is there anything more delightful than a sweet, low-calorie strawberry (4 calories per medium strawberry)?

    California and Florida are the principal U.S. strawberry-growing regions: Florida for winter berries, California for spring, summer and fall fruit.

    Florida strawberry growers began hand-harvesting the first fruit of the winter strawberry season in late November; and while there are imports, Florida is the major supplier of strawberries in the U.S. from November through early spring.

    Today, the strawberry is the leading small fruit crop in the U.S.

    But where did the strawberries come from?

    They’re originally from Europe, but wild strawberries grow in many locations, including the United States.

    The fruit dates back to the Roman Empire, and possibly to the Greeks before that. Fast forward a couple of millennia: The first American species of strawberry was cultivated about 1835.

    The strawberry got its name from the common practice of growing the berries under straw to protect them from frost.
     
     
    A RELATIVE OF THE ROSE

    The strawberry is a member of the rose order and family*, which is why the strawberry plant sometimes gives off a rose-like aroma.

    A greenish-white fruit (see photos #4 and #5) grows from the flower and eventually ripens into a deep red berry.

    Before modern refrigeration, the fruits were picked and consumed in short order; as fresh fruit, in pies, tarts and shortcake.

    The berries were preserved as jam, jelly, sauce, strawberry vinegar and strawberry tonic, a medicinal drink.

    And to enjoy them year-round, the fruits were dried on flat rocks for several days, to be used throughout the fall and winter in breads, cakes and puddings.

    Today, many different varieties of strawberries are cultivated. Each has a specific color, flavor and texture (firm flesh is needed to ship long distances, for example).

    The particular climate and soil dictate which variety of strawberry will grow best; and different varieties were bred to thrive in different soils.

    Some varieties grow early in the season, some later.

    Strawberries must be picked at the peak of ripeness for optimum flavor, as they do not continue to ripen after they’re picked.
     
     
    STRAWBERRY TRIVIA

    The strawberry is the only fruit to carry its seeds on the outside. There are 200 seeds on the average strawberry.

    Each of these seeds has the genetic potential to become a new variety of strawberry since no two seeds are the same. This is how plant breeders develop new varieties of strawberries.
     
     
    HOW TO BUY STRAWBERRIES

  • Select berries that are firm, fragrant, plump and bright-glossy red.
  • Their caps should be bright green and fresh looking.
  • Strawberries don’t ripen after harvest. Use strawberries as soon as possible after purchasing, ideally within two days.
  • Keep the berries cool. Store in the refrigerator until ready to use.
  • The perfect storage temperature for strawberries is 32°F to 36°F.
  • The best place to store the berries is in the crisper drawer of the refrigerator, in clamshell containers or open plastic bags or paper towels, to maintain high humidity.
  •  
     
    USING STRAWBERRIES

  • Berries taste best at room temperature, so remove them from the refrigerator an hour or two before serving.
  • To help berries retain flavor, texture and nutrients, avoid washing or removing their caps until ready for use.
  • Remove the green caps with a light twisting motion or with the point of a paring knife. It’s as easy as a twist of the wrist.
  • Let drain, then pat dry after washing.
  •  
     
    STRAWBERRY NUTRITION

    Strawberries are rich in antioxidants. Studies have found that the berries inhibited the development of oral, esophageal and colon cancers.

    Strawberries are nutritious.

  • Eight strawberries contain more vitamin C than one orange, and have 149% of your Daily Value for vitamin C.
  • Strawberries are low-calorie. A one-cup serving (about 8 to 10 medium-sized berries) contains 45 calories.
  • Strawberries are fat-free and salt free: no fat, no cholesterol, no sodium.
  • Strawberries are also rich in vitamins A and C, folic acid, selenium, calcium polyphenols such as ellagic, ferulic and coumaric acids, quercetin, anthocyanins and phytosterols. They contribute 29% of your Daily Value of manganese.
  • ________________

    *Order Rosales, Family Rosaceae, Genus Fragaria, Species F. × ananassa.
     
      

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    RECIPE: French Toast Sundae – Stuffed French Toast

    We prefer French toast to pancakes and waffles. The texture and the flavor of good bread, as opposed to the wheatiness of the latter.

    For Mother’s Day, we’re making this recipe from DeLallo: Raspberry Mascarpone Stuffed French Toast with Balsamic Glaze.

    That’s a mouthful, and so is the three-decker French toast napoleon or sundae.

    The triple-decker stuffed French toast is layered with creamy mascarpone and fresh berries, drizzled with a rich balsamic glaze.
     
     
    RECIPE: RASPBERRY MASCARPONE STUFFED FRENCH TOAST WITH BALSAMIC GLAZE

    Ingredients For 5-6 Servings
     
     
    For The Filling

  • 8 ounces mascarpone cheese, at room temperature
  • 1 pint raspberries, cleaned & crushed
  • 2 tablespoons wildflower honey
  • 2 tablespoons confectioner’s sugar
  •  
    For The Creamy Balsamic Glaze

  • 4 ounces mascarpone cheese
  • 3/4 cup half and half
  • 6 tablespoons confectioner’s sugar, plus more for dusting
  • 2 tablespoons DeLallo Balsamic Vinegar
  •  
    For The French Toast

  • 6 eggs, beaten
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 loaf Italian-style bread (we used brioche, our favorite for French Toast), unsliced, then sliced thickly for pockets (about 10-12 slices)
  • Butter, for cooking
  •  
    Preparation

    1. MAKE the filling. Combine the mascarpone, crushed raspberries, honey and sugar in a small mixing bowl. Set aside.

    2. MAKE the finishing glaze: Mix mascarpone, half and half, sugar and balsamic vinegar in a small bowl and set aside.

    3. MAKE the French Toast: Whisk together eggs, cream, vanilla and cinnamon in a separate bowl. Using a paring knife (we used a large serrated knife), cut a pocket into each thick slice of bread. Start on one side of bread and cut 3/4 of the way through. Evenly distribute the filling between slices, carefully filling bread pockets.

    4. MELT a spoonful of butter in a large skillet over medium heat, and coat the pan. Dip the filled slices of bread into the egg mixture and place them in the pan. Cook 2-3 minutes per side, until brown and crisp. Repeat this process with remaining slices.

    5. DUST with confectioner’s sugar, drizzled with the balsamic glaze, and serve immediately.
     
     
    > THE HISTORY OF FRENCH TOAST <

     


    [1] A French toast napoleon or sundae, a new way to serve stuffed French toast (photo © DeLallo).

    Vermont Creamery Mascarpone
    [2] Mascarpone and raspberries (photo © Good Eggs).


    [3] Confectioner’s sugar, also called 10x and powdered sugar (photo by Katherine Pollak, © The Nibble).

     

      

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    TIP OF THE DAY: Salad With Cheese


    [1] A slice of Humboldt Fog goat cheese and seeded crisps broken into “croutons.” An idea from Lazy Dog Restaurants (photo © Lazy Dog Restaurants).


    [2] Salad with shaved Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese (photo © Upland Restaurant | NYC).

     

    There are standalone salads, like Greek salad, that incorporate cheese.

    French homes and restaurants have often served the cheese course, served after dinner with salad.

    Or is that the after-dinner salad course with cheese?

    A plate of green salad is graced on top or the side of the plate with cheese.

    The salad plate is served with baguette slices, crisps, crackers crostini, or toasts on the side.

    Today, that slice of cheese has evolved to include options on top of the salad, such as:

  • Caramelized goat cheese rounds
  • Crumbled cheese
  • Diced cheese
  • Grated cheese
  • Grilled cheese slices, such as halloumi
  • Individual mini crottins
  • Mozzarella balls
  • Shaved cheese
  •  
    Popular cheeses for salads are:

  • Blue cheese, crumbled or sliced
  • Brie or Camembert, sliced in triangles
  • Cheddar or other semi-hard cheese, cubed, grated or sliced
  • Feta, crumbled, diced, sliced
  • Goat cheese, crumbled or sliced
  • Parmigiano-Reggiano/Parmesan, grated or shaved
  • Provolone, sliced
  • Ricotta salata, crumbled
  •  
    Of course, you can use any cheese that goes with your salad.

    Consider it an opportunity to have good cheeses more often.

     

     
      

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