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Nutritious Meals for Busy School Nights

When school is back in session, the real test for parents is not in the classroom, but in the kitchen. Between breakfast, lunch, and dinner – not to mention snacks – meal planning seems endless and daunting. With convenient options like canned ingredients on-hand, parents can have the makings of a wholesome homemade meal right at their fingertips. Canned foods not only help cut down on prep time in the kitchen, but also deliver nutritional benefits. In fact, kids and adults who use six or more canned foods per week are more likely to have diets higher in 17 essential nutrients, according to a study published in “Nutrients.” Plus, cans provide year-round access to seasonal fruits and vegetabl

Food Factor: Fresh Corn Salad

If you’re looking for a fresh and low-fat summertime potluck food that features locally grown produce, this fresh corn salad is quick to make and is a crowd-pleaser. If you grow your own basil, you may find yourself tired of pesto. With a recommended amount of 6 Tablespoons in this recipe, your basil won’t go to waste! Try it and let us know what you think on The Food Factor Facebook page or on Twitter. Fresh Corn Salad 5 ears fresh corn, shucked, silks removed 10-15 cherry tomatoes cut in half or quartered 1/2 medium red onion, chopped 6 tablespoons olive oil 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar 1 teaspoon sugar 1 teaspoon kosher salt 1/2 teaspoon black pepper 6 tablespoons finely chopped fres

MS Department of Marine Resources Offering Food Safety Workshops

BILOXI, Miss. – The Mississippi Department of Marine Resources Seafood Technology Bureau will be conducting two food safety workshops at the Bolton State Building in Biloxi. The first workshop is Basic Seafood Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP) to be held August 15-17th. The purpose of this course is to educate seafood dealers, processors, and employees about hazards which can be introduced in seafood and the preventive measures that are used to control these hazards. The workshop is free for Mississippi residents and $125 for out-of-state residents. The second workshop, Basic Sanitation Control Procedures, will be held on September 5th. This workshop is designed to provide i

Mississippi's First Hotel Indigo Opens in Hattiesburg

HATTIESBURG, Miss. – IHG (InterContinental Hotels Group) is proud to announce the opening of its newest location, The Hotel Indigo®-Hattiesburg. The first and only Hotel Indigo in Mississippi opened July 26, 2018. The Hotel Indigo-Hattiesburg hotel is located at South 31st Avenue and Chevy Chase Drive and is within walking distance to the University of Southern Mississippi and The Avenues. The five-story boutique hotel features 100 rooms and business conveniences such as a 24/7 business center with wireless internet and printing available. Other amenities include an on-site fitness center offering a variety of equipment pieces. Pets are also welcome. “All of the team is really excited to be

Best of Jackson: Family-friendly Restaurants

Sometimes, going out to eat with kids can be a hassle, but there are several places in the capital city that make things a little easier. Check out some of the best places in Jackson to take the whole family on Sipp Jackson's newest blog post.

Char Restaurant Debuts New Patio with Yappy Hour on August 18th

JACKSON, Miss. - The new patio at Char in Highland Village launches on Saturday, August 18th, from 3 to 7 p.m. for an event benefiting our four-legged friends through Rescue Revolution of Mississippi. Char is teaming up with Hollywood Feed for their patio opening to raise money for the animal rescue organization. The restaurant will be donating $1 per Tito’s Handmade Vodka drink sold, which will be matched by Tito’s. For more information, please visit charrestaurant.com. Rescue Revolution will host a raffle at the event to help raise money for their non-profit. There will be adoptable dogs in a tent adjacent to the patio for guests to meet, and Hollywood Feed will offer dog goodie bags. Patr

Drop By Shaggy's For the Food and the View

It’s 3:30 p.m. on a Saturday afternoon, well past the lunch rush and hours before dinner. Yet, finding a prime table Shaggy’s in Biloxi is similar to vying for the corner table at a fine dining establishment. You know you’ll have a bit of a wait, but you don’t care. Yes, the food and view overlooking the scenic beach are that good. A large crowd of locals and tourists who enjoy good food and the theater of eating it sitting near a second-floor window or, even better, on the back deck with the wind rolling in from the water, filled Shaggy’s to near capacity during a time when most restaurants are experiencing a post-lunch lull. Alternatively clutching my paper napkin blowing in the wind and s

Turn to Lioco Wine Co. for Your Everyday Wines

If you are a regular follower of our wine musings, you have surely taken notice of a trend among California winemakers to craft table wines with less ripe fruit, tannin, and alcohol levels that are more in tune with pre-1980 California wines and modern European wines. Like you, perhaps, we occasionally enjoy some of the bold and critically-acclaimed wines that emanated from California in the late 1990s. However, for everyday wine we tend to appreciate a more balanced approach to winemaking. So, we were pleased to taste the wines of Lioco Wine Co. with representative Sarah Harshaw. The producer uses grapes from Sonoma County, Santa Cruz Mountains, and Mendocino County. Lioco was founded in 20

How to Blanch Vegetables Before Freezing

If you have a lot of fresh produce you want to preserve, freezing is the fastest and easiest method. Before you throw those veggies in a freezer bag, check to see if they should be blanched. Blanching refers to placing vegetables in boiling water for a short time then quickly cooling them in ice water. So, why blanch vegetables before freezing? Blanching is more about quality than food safety. Blanching stops the enzyme actions, which cause loss of flavor, color and texture. It also helps soften some vegetables, such as broccoli and asparagus, and makes them easier to pack. Here’s a quick chart to help you know how long to blanch your vegetables.

Making the Most of Local Produce

Fresh, local produce is in its prime, making now the perfect time to take part in the farm-to-table movement. Whether you join a community supported agriculture (CSA) group or shop at your local farmer's market, it’s easy to taste the elevated flavor profile of freshly-picked fruits and veggies. Make the most of the season with these tips for storing, cooking and savoring fresh produce. Plan, Prioritize, Prepare Plan what produce you will purchase ahead of time. Many farmer's markets and CSAs distribute eNewsletters or flyers that highlight what’s available. You can also search for seasonality charts in your region to get an idea of what items are at their peak, and plan accordingly. Once yo

Dinner In a Bank Vault? It's Possible at The Vault in Magee

It’s Saturday night, time to let someone else do the cooking. How does dining in an actual bank vault sound? Yes, that room –the one with the heavy steel door and armed guards. Unbelievably, you can enjoy a meal in the room where millions of dollars were once stored. Or, reserve the bank president's glass corner office for a memorable meal. Both of these culinary feats can be accomplished at The Vault Eatery and Drinkery, located in a former Trustmark bank building in Magee. Located in the heart of the city's picturesque downtown district a few blocks from highway 49, transforming the bank building into a restaurant was the brain child of Nona and Jean-Philippe Cook. The Cooks saw the growin

Tyler Florence: Food Network Star and Wine Maker

Tyler Florence faced a conga line of admirers, patiently signing autographs, making small talk and shaking a non-stop parade of sweaty hands. The affable Food Network showman had just finished a two-hour dinner demonstration for a throng of guests at his host’s restaurant, Cooper’s Hawk in Naples, Florida. He was exhausted, having left his California home at 5 a.m. Two earlier flights were canceled by fog, but the cooking show veteran was determined to make good on a promise. “In my entire career, I’ve never missed one,” he said proudly. Florence, still kicking like the Energizer Bunny, is indefatigable. Not only has he been on television since 1996 – surpassed in time only by Bobby Flay – b

Food Factor: Pico De Gallo

Summertime means homegrown tomatoes or tasty tomatoes picked up at the local farmers market. One of my favorite ways to use these seasonal treats is a fresh summer salsa that’s delicious on top of grilled fish or chicken, a healthy addition to a baked potato, or the perfect match for tortilla chips and taco salad. I personally love tortilla chips with lime! Cilantro is one key ingredient in pico de gallo, and also one of the most controversial. My friends seem to either love it or hate it. Its strong flavor goes a long way, so be sure to follow a recipe and even cut back on this herb, then taste your creation. You can always add more, but once you get too much it’s difficult to overcome the

Zea Rotisserie & Bar Coming Soon to Renaissance at Colony Park

NEW ORLEANS, La. -- Zea Rotisserie & Bar, part of Taste Buds Management, will soon open its location in Ridgeland, a suburb of Jackson, Mississippi, in The Renaissance at the Colony Park. With an anticipated opening of fall 2019, the restaurant will feature an expanded bar area, communal seating, and outdoor dining options, as well as an exposed kitchen. “We are excited to open in Ridgeland next year,” said Chief Operating Officer, Paul Hutson. “We believe Zea will be a tremendous complement to the mix of restaurants in the area. Our authentic open flame rotisserie and unique twist on comfort food, along with our new contemporary craft bar, will be a fantastic choice for dining and entertain

Amerigo is a Classic That Gets Better With Age

Decades before celebrity chefs like Giada De Laurentis and Mario Batali brought fine Italian dining into our living rooms courtesy of television’s Food Network, Amerigo taught Jacksonians how to enjoy refined Italian fare at its Ridgeland restaurant. In the constant revolving door of new restaurants that have come and gone, Amerigo has maintained a strong presence in the Jackson area restaurant scene since 1987, and it shows no signs of stopping the production of made-from-scratch pastas, sauces, pizzas, and other Italian dishes that became instant hits when it opened on Old Canton Road near County Line Road and Lake Harbour Drive. Amerigo has done so well in Ridgeland that another location

Winemaking is a Family Affair

When you have a winemaking business that's 12 generations deep, you understand the importance of family. Robert Mondavi, Charles Krug, and other iconic patriarchs in Napa Valley wine can attest to the heartbreak of a family’s internecine war. Pierre Sparr, a proud descendant of a centuries-old Alsace wine family, winces as he talks about the breakup of a winery that bears his family's name. Although once the company’s winemaker, he left following a dispute over the future of the business shortly after his father’s death. Today Pierre Sparr is owned by Wilson Daniels. His cousins are still involved in that business, while the descendant Pierre joined his son in 2008 in making wine under the D

Food Factor: Grilled Corn on the Cob

Sweet corn is a popular crop in Mississippi, and different varieties grow throughout the warm months. It’s an affordable, fresh, and locally grown treat. Whether you like to cook it in the microwave or cream it like your grandma taught you, corn is one of those foods that sings summertime! Grilling corn is a fun way to change up your traditional corn on the cob but beware! If you don’t soak those husks, you may have a little more excitement on the grill than you bargained for. Even when you do soak the corn for the recommended time, stay close to the grill for potential flare-ups. And yes, we know this from experience. Our friends at Iowa State University Extension have a web page dedicated

Gordon Ramsay Stops in Greenville in New Episode of "24 Hours to Hell and Back"

Gordon Ramsay recently expanded his portfolio with a new, unscripted series on Fox called Gordon Ramsay's 24 Hours to Hell & Back, with eight episodes full of restaurant renovations and makeovers. During each episode, Ramsay makes his way across the country in his mobile kitchen, named Hell on Wheels, making stops at restaurants that are just "one bad review away from shutting their doors," according to a statement from Fox. The catch is that Ramsay only has 24 hours to do it. Ramsay is combining the timed competition element of shows like Iron Chef and Chopped with the already high stress environment of working in a restaurant kitchen. Given that Ramsay is known for his tough love tactics w

Online Master's in Hospitality Management Opens Doors for Workers

OXFORD, Miss. – The University of Mississippi is rolling out a new online Master of Science degree in hospitality management to help meet the needs of a growing industry. The program is designed for people working in the industry in management roles to develop more effective operational and analytical skills, talents needed for top-level jobs in a global hospitality marketplace. "There was no program like this in the state for working people in the hospitality industry to advance their careers," said Jim Taylor, UM associate professor of nutrition and hospitality management. "We have established an incredibly strong graduate program here in Oxford, but offering this program 100 percent onlin

Make Your Own Taco Seasoning

Don’t you hate reaching into the cabinet for that little packet of taco seasoning only to find you forgot to buy any? Save yourself an extra trip to the store and mix up your own taco seasoning! Most seasoning mixes are a combination of salt, herbs, and spices. You can adjust your mix to your flavor preferences. If you like it hot, add cayenne pepper or red pepper flakes. If you’re watching your sodium, cut back on the salt. Do you love complex flavors? Try adding powdered oregano to your mix. Making your own seasoning mixes also helps give you peace of mind if you or someone in your family is allergic to gluten or MSG, which can sometimes turn up in spice mixes. Here is the recipe we used,
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