• Summer Magazines

     Doc Adams Through this season, in this space, readers have been enticed, cajoled and nagged to eat local food, and lots of it.

    Not this week.

    Instead, we’ll talk about what once was, and why it’s changed. And why one of the favorite fish for many anglers is now more or less off the menu.

  • Summer Magazines

    crabs While the flavor is beloved, and many see a pile of steamed crabs, a nutcracker, a table full of friends and a cooler of beer as a vision of shore heaven, there is no denying they are, at first glace, not exactly the most appetizing creatures.

    An earlier column in this series referred to the red of a ripe strawberry as an invitation. Hardshell blue crabs offer no such invitation. Instead, they seem to make a pretty straightforward case to be left alone.

  • Summer Magazines

    The season starts now, but it doesn’t last

    A more mature writer, in a more serious publication, could probably resist a lead like “this is the dawning of the age of asparagus.” 

    Fat chance. 

    The flowers are blooming, the days are long, and those in shorts and flip-flops no longer seem pathological. 

  • Summer Magazines

    Cape May Salts are taking offOyster

    At low tide on an overcast spring morning, James Tweed is at the beach.

    It does not look inviting.

    His white rubber boots are covered with a silty mud, and a sweatshirt – hood up – protects him from a portion of the swarms of tiny insects that seem to live solely to bury themselves in hairlines and start biting.

    On this particular morning, he’s oyster wrangling.

  • Summer Magazines

     Scallop-boat

    Fishing is dangerous work.

    Not that there was any doubt of that, but recent events have made it crystal clear: the men on the boats heading into the open ocean place their lives on the line to bring home the catch, and to make a living in one of the county’s biggest industries.

    This week, the Coast Guard has convened a Board of Inquiry to find out what brought down the Lady Mary March 24, the deadliest fishing accident in New Jersey in years. Of the seven crewmembers out on a multi-day scalloping trip, only…

  • Summer Magazines

     spinach You can’t talk about spinach without talking about Popeye, says Ken Thompson, a farmer with a spread out in Tuckahoe.

    It’s a late weekend afternoon, and Thompson is not working on spinach; he’s weeding strawberries, giving the now flowering patch a fighting chance against the competition. In this case, it’s an enormous variety of grasses, stalks, thistles and ivies. Dandelions ready their parachute seeds on white heads, while another shade of green in the tangle explodes on contact, sending a burst of seeds forcefully into the air.

  • Summer Magazines

     Farm markets offer a direct connectionEverything you eat grew somewhere.

    In the meantime, it may have been canned, frozen, broiled, fried or processed beyond recognition, but somewhere, at some time, the last bite you’ve taken was alive, growing, in a field or a hothouse or a pen or a bay.

    It’s funny how easy that can be to forget.

  • Summer Magazines

     eggplant

    It’s as Italian as parmigiana, as French as ratatouille, and as Arab as baba ghanoush, without even getting started on moussaka, Szechuan-style eggplant and garlic sauce or a few dozen Indian dishes.

    In other words, eggplant tastes like home to a huge swath of humanity, under many names and many, many different kinds of spices.

  • Summer Magazines

    green beansWhen most folks think of organic farming, they tend to focus on the stuff added to a field that kills things, not what’s added to make things grow.

    The connection is clear and – for some – fairly visceral. Pesticides kill bugs, herbicides kill weeds and fungicides kill fungus, allowing the plants we like to eat to thrive. But many people question what happens when we eat the crops that have been treated with chemicals designed to kill, even if they are said to be harmless if used as directed.

    Others wonder what happens to the…

  • Summer Magazines

    No one ever said farming was easy: especially farmers.

    Each year is either drought or too rainy, too cold for one crop or too hot for another, and if everything cooperates, if the season is absolutely perfect, then there’s a glut and the prices drop.

    In Cape May County, the amount of land under cultivation has dwindled for years, and in many cases folks whose parents and grandparents or great grandparents were farmers have decided to find something else to do.




Easy holiday meals feature pretzel crackers

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When entertaining during the holiday season, time is of the essence. Between cleaning, shopping, decorating and mingling with friends and family, there's hardly enough time to cook let alone prepare an elaborate seven course meal.
However, the lack of time doesn't mean your food or your guests have to suffer. By combining classic dishes with unique ingredients, you can enhance the flavor of your recipes without having to spend the entire evening in the kitchen.
Instead of preparing an over-the-top feast, try opting for simple and satisfying fare with a subtle modern twist to wow your guests.
Often, it's just that extra ingredient that can really tie together your favorite appetizers, entrees and desserts.

Jessica Segarra, of The Novice Chef food blog, offers three simple tips to create stand out dishes using her favorite better-for-you pretzel crackers to rethink your holiday recipes.
• While it's easy to get caught up in the moment, don't let the holidays sidetrack your guests from eating healthy.
Instead, make wholesome, lighter options the life of the party by adding unexpected ingredients to otherwise bland dishes.
Serve protein packed, homemade sweet potato hummus with veggies and flat-baked Pretzel Crisps(R), the perfect combination of sweet and savory flavors for fall and winter entertaining. Not only will the hummus keep your guests satisfied, it can be made in advance and stored in the refrigerator until ready to serve.
• Sweet-and-savory never fails. Look for recipes that combine both elements to add a well-balance boost of flavor. This holds true for both desserts and entrees.
"Pretzels are my go-to ingredient for adding crunch and just the right amount of salty goodness to my sweeter dishes," says Segarra. "I've found Pretzel Crisps offer the most versatility when it comes to flavor and use. "They can be easily paired with my favorite holiday desserts, including beautifully layered trifles."
• Select dishes that can be prepared ahead of time. Entertaining is no fun if you're confined to the kitchen while your meal cooks. Choosing a baked entree like pork medallions or chicken breasts that can be prepped before your guests arrive can help to free you up to socialize.
Swap out bread crumbs for thin pretzel crackers and coat prior to your guests arrival.
Holiday gatherings are supposed to be fun for everyone, including the hosts. By adopting some simple time-saving secrets to make your food shine, both you and your food can be the life of the party.
Celebrate the holidays with Pretzel Crisps and these seasonally inspired recipes at your next gathering.

Everything Pretzel Crisps Crusted Pork Medallions with Sweet Maple Gravy

Makes 4 servings
Ingredients:
1 pound pork loin, sliced into 1 1/2-inch rounds
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
2 large eggs, whisked
3 cups Everything Pretzel Crisps, crushed
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
For the gravy:
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
3 tablespoons maple syrup
1 cup whole milk

Directions:
Preheat oven to 425 F. Line a baking dish with foil and spray with non-stick spray. Set aside. Place flour in a shallow bowl. Place eggs in a separate shallow bowl. Spread crushed Pretzel Crisps on a rimmed plate. Working with one pork medallion at a time, coat pork in flour, dip into eggs and then press into pretzels. Repeat process until all pork medallions have been coated. Melt butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add four to five pork medallions at a time, cooking until lightly browned, about 2 minutes on each side. Transfer browned pork medallions to prepared baking dish. Repeat process until all pork medallions have been browned. Place pork medallions in the oven and bake until cooked through, or until internal temperature reaches 140 F, about 8 minutes. Let chops rest for 5 minutes after baking. While pork is in the oven, melt butter over medium-high heat in the skillet used to cook the pork. Whisk in flour, scrapping the edges to include any of the browned pork bits in the pan. Stir continually with a wire whisk until the flour has thickened and started to brown, about 3 minutes. Pour in maple syrup and 1/2 cup of milk, continually whisking. After about 30 seconds, gravy should start to thicken again. Add remaining 1/2 cup of milk and whisk until combined. Remove gravy from heat and serve drizzled on top of pork medallions.

Dark Chocolate & Peppermint Pretzel Crisps Brownie Trifle

Ingredients:
1 box fudge brownie mix
1 - 4 ounce bag Dark Chocolate & Peppermint Pretzel Crisps
3 cups whole milk
2 packages (3.9 oz.) chocolate instant pudding
1 tub (11 oz.) whipped topping, divided
Crushed peppWhen entertaining during the holiday season, time is of the essence. Between cleaning, shopping, decorating and mingling with friends and family, there's hardly enough time to cook let alone prepare an elaborate seven course meal.
However, the lack of time doesn't mean your food or your guests have to suffer. By combining classic dishes with unique ingredients, you can enhance the flavor of your recipes without having to spend the entire evening in the kitchen.
Instead of preparing an over-the-top feast, try opting for simple and satisfying fare with a subtle modern twist to wow your guests.
Often, it's just that extra ingredient that can really tie together your favorite appetizers, entrees and desserts.
Jessica Segarra, of The Novice Chef food blog, offers three simple tips to create stand out dishes using her favorite better-for-you pretzel crackers to rethink your holiday recipes.
• While it's easy to get caught up in the moment, don't let the holidays sidetrack your guests from eating healthy.
Instead, make wholesome, lighter options the life of the party by adding unexpected ingredients to otherwise bland dishes.
Serve protein packed, homemade sweet potato hummus with veggies and flat-baked Pretzel Crisps(R), the perfect combination of sweet and savory flavors for fall and winter entertaining. Not only will the hummus keep your guests satisfied, it can be made in advance and stored in the refrigerator until ready to serve.
• Sweet-and-savory never fails. Look for recipes that combine both elements to add a well-balance boost of flavor. This holds true for both desserts and entrees.
"Pretzels are my go-to ingredient for adding crunch and just the right amount of salty goodness to my sweeter dishes," says Segarra. "I've found Pretzel Crisps offer the most versatility when it comes to flavor and use. "They can be easily paired with my favorite holiday desserts, including beautifully layered trifles."
• Select dishes that can be prepared ahead of time. Entertaining is no fun if you're confined to the kitchen while your meal cooks. Choosing a baked entree like pork medallions or chicken breasts that can be prepped before your guests arrive can help to free you up to socialize.
Swap out bread crumbs for thin pretzel crackers and coat prior to your guests arrival.
Holiday gatherings are supposed to be fun for everyone, including the hosts. By adopting some simple time-saving secrets to make your food shine, both you and your food can be the life of the party.
Celebrate the holidays with Pretzel Crisps and these seasonally inspired recipes at your next gathering.

Everything Pretzel Crisps Crusted Pork Medallions with Sweet Maple Gravy

Makes 4 servings
Ingredients:
1 pound pork loin, sliced into 1 1/2-inch rounds
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
2 large eggs, whisked
3 cups Everything Pretzel Crisps, crushed
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
For the gravy:
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
3 tablespoons maple syrup
1 cup whole milk

Directions:
Preheat oven to 425 F. Line a baking dish with foil and spray with non-stick spray. Set aside. Place flour in a shallow bowl. Place eggs in a separate shallow bowl. Spread crushed Pretzel Crisps on a rimmed plate. Working with one pork medallion at a time, coat pork in flour, dip into eggs and then press into pretzels. Repeat process until all pork medallions have been coated. Melt butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add four to five pork medallions at a time, cooking until lightly browned, about 2 minutes on each side. Transfer browned pork medallions to prepared baking dish. Repeat process until all pork medallions have been browned. Place pork medallions in the oven and bake until cooked through, or until internal temperature reaches 140 F, about 8 minutes. Let chops rest for 5 minutes after baking. While pork is in the oven, melt butter over medium-high heat in the skillet used to cook the pork. Whisk in flour, scrapping the edges to include any of the browned pork bits in the pan. Stir continually with a wire whisk until the flour has thickened and started to brown, about 3 minutes. Pour in maple syrup and 1/2 cup of milk, continually whisking. After about 30 seconds, gravy should start to thicken again. Add remaining 1/2 cup of milk and whisk until combined. Remove gravy from heat and serve drizzled on top of pork medallions.

Dark Chocolate & Peppermint Pretzel Crisps Brownie Trifle

Ingredients:
1 box fudge brownie mix
1 - 4 ounce bag Dark Chocolate & Peppermint Pretzel Crisps
3 cups whole milk
2 packages (3.9 oz.) chocolate instant pudding
1 tub (11 oz.) whipped topping, divided
Crushed peppermint, for garnish

Directions:
Heat oven to 350 F (325 F for dark or nonstick pan). Grease pan with butter or nonstick spray. In a medium bowl, mix brownies as directed for fudge brownies, using water, oil and eggs. Bake as directed. Cool completely, about 1 hour. Once brownies are cooled, cut into 1-inch cubes and set aside. Then in a medium bowl, beat milk and pudding mixes with whisk for 2 minutes, or until thickened. Stir in 1 cup whipped topping. Place 1/2 of brownie cubes in 2-qt. bowl. Top with a layer of Dark Chocolate & Peppermint Pretzel Crisps, followed by half of the pudding mixture and another layer of whipped topping. Repeat all layers. Sprinkle the top with crushed peppermint and one whole Pretzel Crisps. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
ermint, for garnish

Directions:
Heat oven to 350 F (325 F for dark or nonstick pan). Grease pan with butter or nonstick spray. In a medium bowl, mix brownies as directed for fudge brownies, using water, oil and eggs. Bake as directed. Cool completely, about 1 hour. Once brownies are cooled, cut into 1-inch cubes and set aside. Then in a medium bowl, beat milk and pudding mixes with whisk for 2 minutes, or until thickened. Stir in 1 cup whipped topping. Place 1/2 of brownie cubes in 2-qt. bowl. Top with a layer of Dark Chocolate & Peppermint Pretzel Crisps, followed by half of the pudding mixture and another layer of whipped topping. Repeat all layers. Sprinkle the top with crushed peppermint and one whole Pretzel Crisps. Refrigerate until ready to serve.


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