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Sunsweet Gets Into the Baking Business

Friday, 5. April 2013 5:25

Purple Country Bread from the new line of baked goods from Sunsweet.

Purple Country Bread from the new line of baked goods from Sunsweet.

 

Sunsweet Growers, Inc., whom you know for its dried fruit, is getting into the baking business with its new line of breads, cookies and pastries — all made with dried plums (otherwise known by their less fashionable moniker: prunes).

The products tout the healthfulness of prunes, which are higher in antioxidants and fiber, and lower in sugar, than raisins and dried cranberries.

What sets the baked goods apart, too, is their color. They’re made with purple wheat and purple corn, giving them eye-catching swirls of vividness.

Recently, I had a chance to sample the products, which are available at Costco in Southern California, and which will make their way to Northern California Costco locations in the near future.

The Sunsweet Bakery products retail for about $4.99.

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Category:Bakeries, Fruit, General, New Products | Comments (2) | Author:

Que Syrah Syrah

Thursday, 14. March 2013 5:25

A glass of Syrah pairs with duck-Syrah ragu over Syrah-flour pasta.

A glass of Syrah pairs with duck-Syrah ragu over Syrah-flour pasta.

That’s what you’ll be humming, when you dig into this lusty pasta dish.

Because there’s wine, wine, everywhere in it.

There’s Syrah in the meaty duck ragu that tops it. There’s even Syrah flour in the pasta dough for the homemade fettuccini. And of course, a glass of — what else — Syrah to sip alongside it all.

I was inspired to cook “Venetian Duck Ragu” with “Syrah Fettuccini” when I received samples of the new WholeVine products from Santa Rosa.

Company founders Barbara Banke and Peggy Furth started their line of grapeseed flours, grape skin flours and grape seed oils — all gluten-free — as a way to make greater use of what vineyards provide. They’ve also added a line of four different gluten-free cookies ($6.99 for eight of them), as well as a line of eight different wheat crackers ($6.99 for 12), all made with their flours.

Syrah skin flour.

Syrah skin flour.

Moreover, they donate a portion of profits to charitable organizations that help children in need.

The varietal grape skin and seed flours ($6.50 per 1/2-pound bag) are made from Chardonnay, Cabernet, Sauvignon Blanc, Merlot, Pinot Noir, Riesling, Syrah and Zinfandel grapes grown in certified sustainable California coastal vineyards.

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Category:Fruit, General, New Products, Recipes (Savory), Wine | Comments (11) | Author:

Pretty in Pink for Valentine’s Day: Cranberry-Creme Fraiche Bundt Cake

Tuesday, 5. February 2013 5:25

Who wouldn't want to enjoy this beauty on Valentine's Day?

Just gaze at this vision in pink.

If ever there was a cake made for Valentine’s Day, “Cranberry-Creme Fraiche Bundt Cake” is it.

If you’re like me, you know to hoard a few extra bags of cranberries in your freezer even after the winter holidays. If not, you can easily buy them in the freezer section of most grocery stores.

They’re the key to making this girly frosting. And they provide a hidden filling of bright, sweet-tangy berries in the middle of this cake.

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Category:Fruit, General, Recipes (Sweet) | Comments (12) | Author:

Brown Butter Apple Tart with An Emphasis on BUTTER

Wednesday, 30. January 2013 5:25

The apples are a supporting player in this tart. It's the butter that's the star.

Pretty rounds of apples arrayed all over the top of this tart catch your eye first.

So much so, you’d think they’d be the star of this dessert.

But that’s not the case.

The real hero of this tart is butter.

Browned until it’s nutty and oh-so fragrant.

I’m almost afraid to tell you how much butter there is. I know my family members almost fell over when I told them as I served them slices.

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Category:Fruit, General, Recipes (Sweet) | Comments (8) | Author:

Get Your Mixing Bowls Ready: Apple Pumpkin Walnut Muffins

Wednesday, 23. January 2013 5:25

Moist apple pumpkin muffins crowned with a walnut half.

There are muffins these days that could double as dessert.

You know the ones I mean — the ones we all fall for because they’re covered in irresistible streusel or sugary glaze that we con ourselves into thinking are still perfect breakfast food.

These are not those kinds of muffins.

“Apple Pumpkin Walnut Muffins” are not overly sweet, especially because I was forced to cut the light brown sugar amount in half when I realized my box was nearly depleted and I was too lazy to run to the store. (Hey, what can I say?) But you can use the full 1/2 cup measure of brown sugar plus 1/2 cup granulated and they’d still be far from sugar bombs.

Pinata apples from Washington State.

The recipe is from “The Apple Lover’s Cookbook” (W.W. Norton & Company) by Amy Traverso. The book, of which I received a review copy, has become my go-to source for apple recipes, what with its range from savory apple uses (“Duck Panzanella with Apples and Thyme” to sweet ones (“Rustic Apple Brown Betty”).

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Category:Fruit, General, Recipes (Sweet) | Comments (11) | Author: