Recipe: Italian Summer Salad

Organic Produce

Thanks very much for giving us your input on our Facebook Page as to what you would like to read more of on our blog. Everyone at Passanante’s Home Food Service was so delighted recipes were at the top of the list, and we are excited to share this simple and delicious Italian Summer Salad Recipe with you!

Step 1: Homemade Croutons

  • 3+ T. olive oil
  • 1 loaf french bread cubed (or can you can use sourdough, Italian or anything that looks good
  • 1 t. kosher salt

Heat olive oil in a large saute pan. Add bread. Cook on low heat for 10 minutes or until browned. Toss croutons during cooking for even browning, add more oil as needed.

Step 2: Fresh and Colorful Salad

  • 1 cucumber
  • 2 C. grape tomatoes, halved
  • 1 red bell pepper, seeded and cut to size of tomatoes
  • 1 yellow or orange bell pepper, seeded and cut to size of tomatoes
  • 1/2 red onion, thinly sliced
  • 15-20 basil leaves, julienne large
  • 1/4 C. capers, drained (optional)

Step 3: Homemade Vinaigrette Dressing

  • 1/2 C. extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 T. balsamic vinegar or white wine vinegar (both taste good)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced (you can also use a jar of minced garlic- it’s easier and lasts longer)
  • 1/2 t. dijon mustard
  • 1/2 t. kosher salt
  • 1/4 t. ground pepper
  • 1/2 packet splenda or 1/2 t. sugar

Mix all salad ingredients in large bowl. Add croutons. Toss with vinaigrette. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Let stand for 30 minutes before serving.

We hope you enjoy this tasty treat at much as we do! Passanante’s Home Food Service delivers all the fresh and organic produce you could ask for in addition to name brand groceries — which helps make any recipe quick and easy!

New Year’s Resolutions from Passanante’s

New Year's Resolutions

As we reflect on 2013 and look forward into 2014 we wanted to take this opportunity to sincerely thank everyone for another magical year at Passanante’s Home Food Service. We have the most incredible customers and staff and couldn’t be more grateful for the support, referrals and kind reviews — they mean so much to us!

To help kick off the new year we thought it’d be fun to offer up a hand full of new year’s resolution suggestions for all of you. We hope you have an incredible 2014 and are looking forward to delivering fresh, high-quality meats and organic produce to each of you and your families. It is an honor to call each of you customers! Happy New Year!

1. Save money by eating at home on weekdays and taking leftovers to work

It’s no secret that eating home can lead to serious savings, but it’s so hard to resist the temptation of grabbing a quick bite to eat when you’re just getting home after a long day of work. We all have our vices so try to find or create a recipe that satifies those cravings. Are you a mexican food junkie? Maybe it’s chinese food or even deep dish pizza. Take notes at your favorite places and make a project out of recreating your favorite meals…. you won’t be sorry.

2. Practice portion control and moderation

Just like mom says, everything is ok in moderation. In 2014 work on your willpower and save the left overs for a second meal rather than seconds at dinner. We all get in the mood for a really sinful meal every once and as long as you don’t eat the whole bucket of fried chicken indulging doesn’t have to lead to a stomach full of guilt.

3. Have at least 4 colors in each meal

We’ve talked about the value of “eating colorfully” in previous blogs and the new year is a great opportunity to get in the habit of eating a more balanced meal. It really couldn’t be easier to figure out to do if you’re doing it right — if you’ve got 4 of more colors on your plate at each meal you’re doing pretty good! Now.. eating french fried an putting food coloring in mashed potatoes doesn’t count as two colors. — we’re talking fruits and vegetables!

4. Host a pot luck and exchange family recipes

The best recipes are the ones that have been perfected over generations of additions, subtractions and substitutions. This year make an effort to host a great pot luck party and invite friends and neighbors to share their favorite family recipes with the group. If you’re feeling really adventurous you could even collect each of the recipes and make a small book as a party favor for your guests. Sharing family recipes is a really unique way to strengthen friendships and learn more about the people you care for.

5. Tell a friend about Passanante’s Home Food Service and share the love

Everyone knows the fastest way to someone’s heart is through their stomach… so why not spread the word about Passanante’s this year? All jokes aside, we genuinely appreciate every single referral and tasting party request and would love the opportunity to impress your friends this year. If you think our gourmet food delivery service could be a good fit for someone you know we’d love the opportunity to wow them!

Three Detoxifying Foods Your Liver Loves

Artichoke | Detox Food

Even with all of the tasty organic veggies and hormone-free meats you could want at your fingertips (that is, if you’re a Passanante’s customer :),) resisting the urge to indulge in the not-so-good-for-you foods and drinks during holidays, world-travels and weekends can sometimes be futile. But hey, we’re only humans so there’s no reason to beat yourself up after a little bit of fun!

At Passanante’s Home Food Service we believe in balance. It’s no secret that staying in and preparing organic vegetables and hormone-free meat meals at home is a healthier alternative to eating out, but sometimes you have to live a little — and that’s where detox foods come in.  As you embark on a new work week following St. Patrick’s Day weekend, you may feel a little more bloated, foggy, or sluggish than usual as your body tries to filter through the foods and drinks from your weekend celebrations. No problem! There are dozens of great detoxifying foods out there that you should try to incorporate into your diet to help get you feeling like your old self.

Check out these three detoxifying foods that your liver loves and help kickstart your cleansing process by working these into your meals this week.

1. Garlic – The allicin and selenium found in garlic are two natural compounds that aid in liver cleansing. Also, The sulphuric compounds found in garlic make this tasty ingredient a powerful antiviral, antiseptic and antibiotic which can help the body purge free radicals and improve liver function.

2. Artichoke – The cynarin found in artichokes is known to help prevent indigestion, assist the digestion process, increase bile production, and purify the liver and gallbladder. Additionally, artichokes work as a mild diuretic for the kidneys, which helps to remove toxins from the body once the liver has filtered them out of your system.

3. Organic Cabbage – Believed by the American Cancer Society to reduce the risk of cancer, organic cabbage is an incredibly powerful detoxifier. Packed full of vitamins A, B, C and E, cabbage has all of the necessary nutrients to help effectively cleanse the liver.

Politics in the Pantry

Produce Inspection

With the Presidential election behind us we just may begin to see some changes in food regulation laws as a result of the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) signed into law by President Barak Obama back in January 2011.

Impacting roughly 80% of consumer purchased foods not including meat and poultry, the FSMA is the most dramatic change to food regulation laws in the United States in more than 70 years. The premise of the FSMA is to emphasize prevention rather than punishment by implementing four sets of rules designed to reduce foodborne illnesses which impact some 50,000 Americans each year and result in an average of 3,000 deaths annually.

The goal of the  four regulations associated with the FSMA is to increase monitoring of imported foods, while taking aggressive measures to prevent produce contamination including but not limited to more frequent and thorough inspections of food packaging facilities.

In the summer of 2012, America experienced four major outbreaks linked to FDA-regulated foods. While the cost of increased regulation through the FSMA is steep, falling in the billions of dollars range, a 2010 Pew Trusts study estimates the total ‘costs’ of foodborne illnesses at $152 billion each year.

At Passanante’s Home Food Service we pride ourselves on the safety and quality of foods we provide to hundreds of families each month. We don’t need the federal government to tell us how important food safety is or to implement laws to protect you — we do it on our own and are conscious of it everyday. Passanante’s has always adhered to the strictest of policies and actively looks for opportunities to improve our methods.

We love being the company you can trust for safe organic produce and hormone-free meat delivery and look forward to continuing to impress each of you!

Happy eating! ❤

Zesty Romaine Crunch Salad

Zesty Romaine Crunch Salad

It’s been awhile since Passanante’s posted our Italian Summer Salad, so we figured it was time to post this fabulous recipe for Zesty Romaine Crunch Salad.  This recipe is great when served with Heavenly Tilapia and a simple pasta — definitely worth wipping up this weekend. Let us know what you think about it on our Facebook page and be sure to post your favorite recipes too!

The Crunchy Topping:

  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans
  • 1/2 package Ramen noodles uncooked and broken up
  • 1 Tbs. oil

Heat oil, cook nuts and noodles until crispy and light brown. Drain on paper towel.

The Salad:

  • 1 head of organic romaine lettuce torn into bite sized pieces
  • 1/2 bunch of organic broccoli crowns, chopped very fine
  • 1 bunch of organic green onions, chopped

Mix all in plastic container and place in refrigerator.

The Dressing:

  • 1/2 cup sugar heated with
  • 1/2 cup of red wine vinegar. Remove from stove and add…
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 2 tbs. soy sauce

Chill dressing. Mix crunchy topping, salad and dressing just before serving.