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Endangered Species Chocolate Welcomes New Director of Operations

Brent Robinson

Brent Robinson

Endangered Species Chocolate has announced that Brent Robinson has joined the company as its new Director of Operations.  Robinson will oversee all operations activities including production, sanitation and warehouse. He will be an integral part of the continued expansion of the company.

Robinson has worked in the food industry since graduating from Ball State University in 2002. He has extensive background in both quality and production and most recently served as an Operations Supervisor for Mead Johnson Nutrition in Zeeland, Mich.  He has received certifications from Barry Callebaut and AIB International, along with extensive training in LEAN manufacturing.  ESC feels confident that Robinson’s background will support the company’s growing product demand by increasing and improving operating efficiency.

“We are excited to add Robinson to our team,” says Curt Vander Meer, CEO of Endangered Species Chocolate.  “We feel confident that Robinson’s multi-layered experience in manufacturing will strongly support our company’s rapid growth strategy and launch of several new products in the upcoming year.”

Robinson is joining the company at a time when it’s experiencing continued growth in the natural food industry.  To keep up with this growth, the company is looking to extend its operations system with additional equipment and employees in the upcoming year. All these factors reflect the growing appeal of Endangered Species Chocolate.

“We’ve experienced more growth this year than we originally anticipated,” says Vander Meer. “We’re encouraged that this growth not only reflects that consumers love our product but also support our company’s core mission and 10 percent GiveBack.”

Gourmet Popcorn from 479° Hits the Shelves at Kroger Stores Nationwide

 479° today announced that its delectable, low-calorie popcorn will soon be available in more than 1,200 Kroger stores nationwide, including Kroger-owned banners such as Fred Meyer, QFC, King Soopers, and Ralphs. Starting in November 2013, store shelves will be stocked with big, beautiful snack bags containing the mouthwatering flavors 479° is known for, making the Kroger family of stores the first major retailer in the grocery channel to bring 479° to market.

To celebrate the partnership, Kroger will be the first to carry 479°’s newest flavor: Toasted Seaweed + Sesame. This on-trend snack features 479°’s signature light and fluffy organic heirloom popcorn, tossed with nutty sesame and flakes of lightly toasted seaweed.

In addition to Toasted Seaweed + Sesame, Kroger stores will offer the rest of 479°’s new product line: Sea Salt, White Cheddar + Black Truffle, Creamery Butter, and Sea Salt Caramel. All 479° products are made with organic heirloom popcorn, are gluten-free, non-GMO, and low in calories.

479° is dedicated to mindful business practices, quality products, and hand-picked ingredients. The company is committed to producing a sustainable product everyone can feel good about eating, while Kroger is innovating their chip aisle with snacks that taste better, and are better for you.

“We chose to partner with Kroger because their values align with ours,” says Jean Arnold, Founder of 479°. “It’s a perfect match. I’m so excited to bring our snacks to people around the country in partnership with Kroger.”

Saffron Road Introduces First-of-its-Kind All Natural Lamb Broth

Saffron Road, the packaged food brand of American Halal Co., is launching a premium all-natural, Halal-certified, gluten free lamb broth nationally at Whole Foods Market stores this month. Saffron Road’s Classic Culinary Lamb Broth celebrates the chef’s tradition of using culinary ingredients and kettle cooking – in particular, by incorporating pasture raised 100 percent vegetarian-fed lamb with hearty vegetables and rich, flavorful herbs, providing three grams of protein per serving. Saffron Road currently has three other broths in distribution, but the new lamb broth would not exist without the support and guidance of Whole Foods Market. The first-of-its-kind lamb broth will join the three other Saffron Road broths: Artisan Roasted Chicken Broth, Traditional Low Sodium Chicken Broth, and Classic Culinary Vegetable Broth.

Whether used with vegetables, in making homemade stews, soups and sauces, or to liven up leftovers, these culinary inspired broths enable consumers to add rich flavor to their own recipes. In addition to being a delicious time-saver, studies by the Weston Price Foundation show that Saffron Road’s broths can promote good digestion, strengthen joints and increase respiratory health.

“Saffron Road just set another unprecedented milestone – we are the first Halal lamb broth to be sold in the high-end Tetra package, which we believe is healthier than the mainstream soup can containers or stock cubes,” says Adnan Durrani, CEO of Saffron Road. “With the guidance of the Global Grocery Team at Whole Foods Market, we took that innovation up a notch further in culinary excellence; all of our broths also use a very delicate brew of pure Halal antibiotic-free gelatin and naturally vitamin-infused herbs and roasted vegetables, bringing an unmatched robust flavor and quality to our broths that home chefs can really celebrate. Our consumers have been eagerly requesting a Saffron Road Lamb Broth, so we are thrilled to be able to meet this need.”

“The popularity of our broths has been growing over time, as they have won awards and grown in consumer acceptance. Being able to partner with Whole Foods Market on such a unique and delicious item has been a great partnership – and just in time for the busy holiday cooking season,” added Jack Acree, Executive Vice President of Saffron Road.

The new lamb broth is currently available exclusively at select Whole Foods Markets.

Market Street to Host Entertaining Made Easy Expo

Market Street guests will get help making the holiday season stress-free at this weekend’s “Entertaining Made Easy” expo. The Saturday-Sunday (Nov. 9-10) event will run from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. both days at all 11 Market Street locations.

During the expo, guests will have the opportunity to taste a variety of holiday dishes at sampling stations set up throughout the store, as well as collect ideas for party trays, gift baskets and holiday meal menus. Additionally, floral and dish departments will exhibit ways to make the holidays more festive.

“Whether you’re entertaining others or celebrating with loved ones, our Market Street teams want to help guests prepare and enjoy the holidays by creating a one-stop shopping experience,” said Wes Jackson, chief merchandising officer for United Supermarkets, LLC, owner of Market Street. “We are excited to show guests how easy holiday planning can be.”

At the expo, guests can expect samplings of products such as:

  • Praline sweet potatoes,
  • Cornbread stuffing,
  • Herb giblet gravy,
  • Cranberry relish,
  • Cheese balls,
  • Sausage balls,
  • Hot glazed cocktail sandwiches,
  • Sourdough bread,
  • Charred onion dip,
  • Hot artichoke and sundried tomato spread,
  • Caramelized crème brulee,
  • Fruit cake loaf,
  • Sea salt and pepper smoked salmon and cream cheese snacks,
  • Pulled pork sliders.

For more information visit www.marketstreetunited.com.

Denali Flavors to Unveil Two New Ice Creams

West Michigan-based Denali Flavors, developers of the legendary Moose Tracks ice cream, will unveil two brand new flavors at the International Dairy Show, held at McCormick Place in Chicago on November 3-6.

Hazelnut Moose Tracks is a rich combination of hazelnut-flavored ice cream, hazelnut-filled mini chocolate cups and loads of world renowned Moose Tracks Fudge. Salty Caramel Caribou features salty toffee-flavored ice cream, with salty caramel-filled mini milk chocolate cups and luscious Denali Salty Caramel Fudge.

Both new flavors will be available for sampling by Dairy Show attendees at booth number 1931.

“Hazelnut Moose Tracks and Salty Caramel Caribou have come to life as a result of some distinct trends we’re seeing not so much in ice cream, but in the dessert category itself,” said Neal Glaeser, President of Denali Flavors. “Moose Tracks Fudge has always been a balance of sweet and salty, and now we’re seeing that trend emerge more widely in cupcakes and snacks. We also see hazelnut growing in popularity, perhaps as a result of the growing specialty coffee beverage trend.”

“We’ll have a prime audience of ice cream industry folks gathered at the International Dairy Show next month so it’s the perfect opportunity to gather some valuable feedback on these new flavors we’re excited to introduce,” added Glaeser,

The Original Moose Tracks ice cream flavor was introduced in the mid-80′s by husband and wife entrepreneurs Wally and June Blume. Since that time it has gone on to become one of the top-selling flavors of premium ice cream in the country. Denali Flavors subsequently developed more than 30 flavors including Bear Claw®, Bear Foot®, Mother Lode®, and Caramel Caribou Moose Tracks.

Celebrate the Holidays with Healthy Habits

There’s no need to forego favorite family recipes, even if following a diet. With the right ingredient substitutions, like House Foods Tofu, beloved holiday meals will make the transition flawlessly. House Foods Tofu is highly versatile, easy to cook with, and is ideal for many genres of food. High in protein and nutrient-packed, it’s a health conscious food choice to replace meats, mayonnaise, or cream cheese. Instead of the classically fattening macaroni and cheese side, replace it with House Foods Tofu Mac’n’Cheese. With only 7 grams of fat and 12 grams of protein, it’s an easy swap that the whole family will enjoy!

Tofu Mac ‘n’ Cheese

Ingredients

House Foods Tofu Mac 'n'Cheese½ package of House Foods Premium Tofu Firm or Organic Firm, strained
1 box elbow macaroni
3 tablespoons of onions
½ cup Greek yogurt
½ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon mustard
1 teaspoon butter
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
dash paprika
pepper to taste

 

Directions

1. Cook and strain macaroni noodles and set aside.
2. Sauté onions in pan until golden brown.
3. Combine all ingredients in blender and puree until smooth.
4. Mix cheese sauce and macaroni noodles in a large pot over low heat until all noodles are coated with sauce and heated thoroughly. Serve warm.

 

Note:
Optional: Serve with parmesan cheese for extra flavor.

Serves 8.

Want something uncommon for the family table? Try the Soba Noodle Salad with Tofu, a vibrant and healthy vegan recipe with Asian flavors that complement tofu. House Foods Tofu is perfect to incorporate into a diet to feel satisfied and reap the benefits of soy.

Soba Noodle Salad with Tofu

House Foods Soba Noodle Salad with TofuIngredients

1 House Foods Premium Tofu or Organic Tofu, Extra Firm, patted dry and cut into ½ inch strips
8 oz. soba noodles, uncooked
1 medium cucumber, cut into 1/8-inch-thick julienne strips
1 medium bell peppers, julienned
Dressing:
1/3 cup sushi rice vinegar
¼ cup lime juice
2 ½ tbsp. sesame oil
2 tbsp. soy sauce
3 tsp. sugar
2 tbsp. ginger, minced
2 tbsp. scallions, minced
2 tbsp. roasted sesame seeds

 

Directions

1. Cook noodles in a large pot following package directions
2. Drain noodles and rinse well under cold water. Set aside and refrigerate.
3. Spray oil on a non-stick pan and grill tofu. Set aside and refrigerate.
4. Whisk all ingredients for dressing.
5. Toss together noodles, cucumber, and red bell pepper.
6. Add tofu strips and mix well.

Serves 6.

 

Auctions of Hostess Brands’ Assets Nationwide Begin

Rabin Worldwide Inc, a San Francisco industrial auction company, in conjunction with Capital Recovery Group, a Connecticut industrial auction and appraisal firm, will conduct multiple auctions for the remaining assets of former Hostess factories on behalf of Hackman Capital Partners. After Hostess Brands ceased operations in November 2012, many of its brands and factories, such as Twinkies and Wonder Bread, were immediately sold to competitive producers. Hostess Brands later won court approval to sell the rest of its assets at auction and Hackman Capital Partners purchased the remaining real estate, bakery equipment, and fleet assets located in 34 states.

In addition to seven complete Hostess factories that produced Twinkies, Cupcakes, and Wonder Bread, the auction will include more than 3000 trucks and trailers at over 90 additional locations. Many of these trucks were responsible for delivering Twinkies and other treats from the regional distribution centers to local convenience stores. A series of factory auctions will be held both online and live over the next 3 months beginning October 30 in Los Angeles. The remaining auctions will be held in St. Louis, Cincinnati, Oakland and Philadelphia.

“The amount of interest in these auctions is unprecedented,” said Richard Reese, President of Rabin Worldwide. “The nostalgia for Hostess Brands has attracted a lot of attention to the sales, and we hope it will strengthen bidding. Many of us Boomers who had brown bag lunches at school had our sandwiches made on Wonder Bread and our favorite Hostess treat for dessert,” Reese reminisced.

Rabin Worldwide and the Capital Recovery Group specialize in multiple location liquidations throughout North America. Similar auctions include Braniff Airlines, Montgomery Ward, and the Railway Express Agency. Complete listings and auction schedules can be found online at rabin.com.

Yummy Yammy Reinvents the Salsa Market with Sweet Potato Salsas

Vermont-based Yummy Yammy introduces the world’s first sweet potato salsa, redefining the concept of salsa by replacing the typical tomato base with flame-roasted sweet potatoes! Founder and Yambassador, Lisa Johnson spent years perfecting the recipes for her line of 100 percent sweet potato-based salsas after brainstorming ways to incorporate more sweet potatoes into her family’s diet.

“Flame-roasted and U.S.-grown sweet potato provides a scrumptious, naturally sweet and highly nutritious base for my fun, new salsas,” Johnson says. “Most importantly, customers repeatedly rate the delicious flavor as the most important feature of the salsas, even though they also happen to be powerful and natural nutritional boosts!”

Roasting brings out the natural sweetness, rich mouth feel and phenomenal nutrition of yams in a way that commercial microwaving and steaming just can’t match. Additional ingredients like balsamic vinegar, wholesome beans and non-GMO corn enhance the flavors further.

Each jar of salsa has only 250 calories, and the salsas come in three flavors: Mexican Sweet Potato Salsa (in Mild, Medium and Hot) with Black Beans, Corn and Chipotle, Moroccan Sweet Potato Salsa with Curry, Lentil & Kale and Tuscan Sweet Potato Salsa with Roasted Red Pepper, White Bean & Basil.

 

 

Yummy Yammy’s artisanal crafted Sweet Potato Salsas are naturally fat-free, sugar-free, gluten-free, vegetarian, vegan, full of powerful antioxidants (50 percent RDA of Vitamin A per serving), 250 calories or less in each jar, and the list goes on. Plus, these salsas were created by someone who knows and cares where her ingredients come from. Johnson’s extensive 25-year farm to plate background includes organic farming, work in restaurants, 12 years managing and aggressively expanding natural food coops, and a decade of non-profit farm fresh initiatives designed to bring everyone closer to farmers and their wholesome produce.

Yummy Yammy’s Delicious Salsas are available at www.YummyYammy.com through Amazon for $9.99 per jar. 

Maine Lobster Chef of the Year Named

Chef Chris Long of Natalie’s, Camden Harbour Inn, Camden, Maine, was named the winner in this year’s Maine Lobster Chef of the Year competition, and Gourmet News has his recipe!

Lobster Chef of the Year, 2013 Chris Long of Natalies in Camden, Maine

Photos by Ted Axelrod

Long was one of four Maine finalists selected to prepare lobster dishes in front of a live audience and judges. The judges’ voting resulted in a near-tie, with the audience vote ultimately determining Long as the winner. Long’s winning dish was a butter poached Maine lobster with grilled local mushrooms, corn, parsnip ragout and thyme butter. Click here for the recipe.

Other competitors included Jon Gaboric, also of Natalie’s, Shanna O’Hea of Academe at The Kennebunk Inn and Brandon Blethen of Robert’s Maine Grill in Kittery.

Long’s winning dish is currently on the menu at Natalie’s Restaurant. Also featured will be Gaboric’s submission: butter poached lobster with a corn and miso puree, shaved radish salad, geoduck dressing, crispy quinoa and yuzu foam.

“This was a great opportunity for Chef Long to shine,” said Raymond Brunyanszki, owner of the Camden Harbour Inn and Natalie’s. “He’s truly gifted in his ability to craft unique dishes using Maine’s finest ingredients – a talent we’re proud to have in the kitchen at Natalie’s.” Brunyanszki added, “Lobster is Maine’s most famous food, we’ve always loved Maine lobster in our kitchen. One of our most popular offerings is our lobster tasting menu, four courses of lobster dishes, each highlighting the sweet, fresh flavor of the meat. This menu is available year-round.”

Natalie's Restaurant in Camden, MaineLong joined Natalie’s after working as Executive Chef at Spread Restaurant in Portland. Previous experience includes working as a leader in the kitchen at Charlie Trotter’s in Chicago and as an apprentice to Master Chef Hartmut Handke in the Bocuse d’Or World Cooking Contest in France. Long is a graduate of the Greenbriar Culinary Apprentice program in West Virginia. He has received gold and silver medals for competing in American Culinary Federation events.

Long took home a prize of $1,000 for winning the competition.

The competition was judged by Kathleen Fleury, Editor in Chief of Down East Magazine, Chef Abby Freethy of Northwoods Gourmet Girl in Greenville, and Emily Lane from Calendar Islands Maine Lobster Company.

The Maine Lobster Chef of the Year competition is presented annually by the Maine Lobster Promotion Council.

Maine Lobster Chef of the Year Shares Recipe

Here’s Chef Chris Long’s recipe that earned him the title of Maine Lobster Chef of the Year:

1 lobster

2 ounces wild mushrooms

1 cup corn

1/2 cup chopped parsnips

1 cup corn stock

1 shallot, minced

1 pound butter

2 ounces thyme

1 lemon

Optional:

parsnip chips

micro arugula

basil flowers

Lobster Chef of the Year, 2013 Chris Long of Natalies in Camden, MaineBoil lobster in salted water, 7 minutes for claws and 3 minutes for tail, and shock in ice water. Take lobster out of shell and place claws and tail in 10 ounces of butter.

Chop thyme and fold in 4 ounces of butter and set aside.

Saute shallot in 2 ounces butter, add corn stock and reduce by half. Add corn, chopped parsnips and knuckle meat and the juice from half the lemon. Season with salt and pepper.

Grill mushrooms and set in lobster butter. Gently warm up butter to heat up lobsters. Place ragout in middle of the plate. Take lobster and mushrooms out of butter and season with salt and pepper and lemon juice.

Lobster Chef of the Year, 2013 Chris Long of Natalies in Camden, MaineLobster Chef of the Year, 2013 Chris Long of Natalies in Camden, MainePlace lobster and mushrooms over ragout. Spoon thyme butter around lobster and ragout. Garnish with parsnip chips, micro arugula and basil flowers.

 

Photos by Ted Axelrod.

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