May 2008

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In This Edition

Eat Right — Balance Is The Game
Healthy Summertime Foods for Kids
National Hamburger Month and National Salsa Month — Go together like…
Father’s Day a la Kids

Health & Nutrition

Valerie Waters’ Tip of the Month — Make Time for Exercise

Recipe of the MonthSunshine Cheeseburgers

Valerie Waters’ Video Vignettes — Six Weeks to Red Carpet Ready


The balance of mind and body starts with the balance of diet.

Eat Right — Balance Is The Game

Valerie Water“Exercising is a great fat buster, muscle toner and stress reducer — good news for all of us multitaskers out there — but it doesn’t have to take hours and hours at the gym!”, according to Valerie Waters’ Tip of the Month. She says, “My philosophy is get in, get out, get a life! Even simple steps like taking the stairs at work, going for a walk with the kids or some active playtime with them at the park can all make a real difference (for your kids as well as for you).”

Valerie’s Video Vignettes are available for downloading at LoveYourRaisins.com, too. You will find further remarks about her philosophy, and Six Steps to Red Carpet-Ready could become your favorite workout routine.

Whatever you do — take control! Balance your food intake with exercise and maintain a healthy lifestyle for yourself and your family. Plan regular activities that the whole family can do together. Enjoy an afternoon bike ride or walk with the kids. Make it a nature walk to add some educational flair or bring the dog along for extra fun. With summer approaching, take advantage of the nice weather and get outdoors with the kids. Pack a picnic and go to the park for the day.

Balance the number of calories in the foods and drinks you consume with the number of calories your body uses for energy — every day. Choose fiber-rich fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. Don’t forget that California Raisins are a fruit — make the perfect portable snack and add interest and nutrition to many meals.

First of all, consider the Recommended Daily Intake (RDI) of food for each member of the family. You will find a wealth of information about the RDI and number of calories recommended for all age groups at www.mypyramid.gov. The number of servings required each day boils down to:

Fruits and Vegetables 5 to 9 servings
Meats 4 to 6 ounces
Dairy products 3 to 4 servings
Grains 6 to 11 servings
Fat and Sweets In moderation.

Calories, then, are controlled by the size of the serving.

Fruits — One (1) serving of fresh fruit is usually 1/2 cup or a small apple or fruit that is about the size of a baseball. With dried fruits, the serving size is smaller because much of the water has been removed, so 1/4 cup California Raisins counts as one whole fruit serving.

Vegetables — The recommended serving size is a small rounded handful which will be about 1/2 cup of cooked or raw vegetable.

Meat, fish and poultry — 3 ounces of cooked meat, fish or poultry is a piece that is about the size of a deck of cards or the palm of your hand.

Peanut and other nut butters — 2 tablespoons makes a serving and is about the size of a large marshmallow.

Grains — Choose whole grains or minimally processed grain products at least one-half of the time. A whole grain slice of bread, 1 muffin or 1 biscuit or roll counts as a serving of grains. A couple of spoonfuls of cooked breakfast cereal, pasta or rice, a mound about the size of a tennis ball cut in half, or 1/2 cup, is one serving of grains while a serving of most prepared cereals is 1 cup. The Nutrition Label on the package is the best guide for serving sizes and calorie counts. Remember, choose whole grains.

Asian Pear, Spinach and Golden Raisin Salad with Pomegranate-Mustard Dressing and Herb Crusted Chicken BreastSalads are always a great way to get all of those vitamin- and mineral-rich fruits and vegetables. Asian Pear, Spinach and Golden Raisin Salad with Pomegranate-Mustard Dressing and Herb Crusted Chicken Breast or Asian Turkey Salad make exciting light meals that fill you up — not out.

California Raisin-Almond Chicken Curry (Murghi Kismis Salan)California Raisin-Almond Chicken Curry (Murghi Kismis Salan) over brown rice makes an exotic meal that is low in sodium and healthy. Easy Chicken Stir-Fry is a quick fix for supper. Serve it on a bed of whole-wheat couscous for a Mediterranean treat and add some of those whole grains for a healthy meal that’s low in calories and sodium.

Turkey Cutlet on Ciabatta with California Raisin and Red Onion MarmaladeAs we get closer to summer, it gets closer to sandwich time and turkey is hard to resist. This Turkey Cutlet on Ciabatta with California Raisin and Red Onion Marmalade combined with the Marinated Lentil Salad provides a protein and fiber boost that’s so good for you. Did we mention it’s also delicious?

Garlic-California Raisin Wilted Greens on Pappadum (Saag Pappadum)California Raisins right out of the box and trail mixes with California Raisins are great, and small in-between meal snacks are good for keeping your metabolism active. Garlic-California Raisin Wilted Greens on Pappadum (Saag Pappadum) is a high-fiber and low cholesterol take on pizza with an East Indian flare. Beef Picadillo Empanadas, at only 90 calories per serving, can be baked for an even healthier variation. Both of these fill those gaps between meals or make great appetizers for parties.

If you don’t mark May 11 as Eat What You Want Day while celebrating Mother’s Day, go ahead — pick a day, and indulge in your favorite food. It’s OK to splurge once in awhile, but moderation is the key. Check out the California Raisin recipes and variations in our Healthy Recipes Category for guilt-free Eat What You Want pleasures.

Healthy Summertime Foods for Kids

Summertime will be here before you know it, and that means school vacation is right around the corner. That would be a good time to monitor your children’s eating habits and make sure they’re learning about nutritious foods and snacks at the same time. California Raisins make a sweet and healthy snack, anytime of the day. The joy of this perfect dried fruit is that, added to almost everything, they add bold flavor and nutrients for the entire family.

Preparing easy, fun meals and snacks is a great way to get the entire family involved in some family time. South of the Border Bowl(s) make a quick and easy summertime lunch or dinner that’s good for you and the kids can help prepare.

Ham Rolls with Raisins (Rollitos de jamon con pasas)Get the kids involved in making lunch with Power-Lunch Pasta and Ham Rolls with Raisins (Rollitos de jamon con pasas). Add a burst of summer color by adding green to their plates with Neptune’s Raisin Salad or Ham and Celery Salad with Walnuts and Raisins. Both are low cholesterol, taste great and are very kid friendly!

Bumps-on-A-BagelFor easy in-between meal pickups, help the gang make Bumps-on-A-Bagel or Raisin Cereal Pops. Try Pumpkin Pie Popcorn Mix with Raisins or Sunshine Snack Mix for a handy treat that is quick to make and so tasty. Make ahead and store so they are ready to enjoy anytime. The kids will love these snacks, and so will you.

Raisin Cereal Pops Pumpkin Pie Popcorn Mix with Raisins Sunshine Snack Mix

National Hamburger Month and National Salsa Month — Go together like…

Sunshine CheeseburgersMay is National Hamburger Month and it is the perfect time to get the barbecue ready for some heavy-duty use this summer. Round up the gang, friends and family, and wow them with these “hamburger(s) from heaven” on a bun and our selection for Recipe of the Month — Sunshine Cheeseburgers

Malaysian Pickles (Archar)Coincidentally, May is Salsa Month, too, so you will want to try Burgers with Raisin Salsa. Speaking of salsas, they are so fresh and versatile that they kick up the flavor in an endless variety of foods. For dipping chips or adding pizzazz to a meal, Malaysian Pickles (Archar) and California Golden Raisin Tequila Salsa are just the tickets. Transform any entrée with the natural fruity sweetness of Citrus, Golden Raisin Pickled Onion Salsa or Tropical Fruit Salsa with California Raisins. Olive, J’cama and Orange Salsa is delicious served with pita bread or over grilled fish. Go ahead, add a burst of color and, more important, flavor to any dish.

Father’s Day a la Kids

It’s time to plan ahead for that special day for Dad, and what would be better than Father’s Day a la Kids! Think ahead and get the kids excited about the possibilities, and they won’t be able to wait until Sunday, June 15, to start Dad off with a Frothy Yogurt Shake.

Raisin Oatmeal Cookie MuffinsMom can help mix up Fluffy Polka Dot Pancakes or Pumpkin ‘n Raisin Waffles the night before to cook and serve piping hot the next morning. Raisin Oatmeal Cookie Muffins, prebaked the day before, will warm gently the next morning. Cinnamon Ring, made with biscuits from the refrigerator case, is a kid-friendly dish that is ready in a hurry.

Then, it’s time for presents and maybe a day at the ballgame or fishing with Dad. Take along a special lunch that everyone has a hand in making. Simple fillings that can be mixed together by even the littlest hands make Ham Pitawiches and Island Chicken Wraps, which are good grab-and-go foods that fill you up even after a long hike to a favorite fishing hole.

Savory Trail MixIf your idea of fun with Dad is just a long walk, a big batch of Savory Trail Mix will provide plenty of satisfying nibbles for Dad and all of the crew.

Couscous Salad with California RaisinsPeruvian Beef Wrap takes a bit more help from Mom, but it’s great for grilling in the park or tailgating at the baseball game. Accompany these with California Celebration Slaw, California Raisin, Rice and Carrot Salad, Couscous Salad with California Raisins or Italian Potato Salad and fill everyone to the brim.

Honey-Mustard Chicken and Pasta SaladOtherwise, Tempting Tuna Pita Pockets and Honey-Mustard Chicken and Pasta Salad are whole meal take-a-longs.

Golden Raisin, Lemon, Pistachio and Butterscotch CookiesFinally, Golden Raisin, Lemon, Pistachio and Butterscotch Cookies will top off any occasion that involves making memories on Dad’s special day with the kids.

California produces the world’s best and most nutritious and fun-filled fruit. Eat more California Raisins in 2008.

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