Cheers to Easter!

After a couple of months of silence on this blog (more on that soon - I spent the first two months of this year wrapping up a master’s degree!) - my travel schedule is now packed with spring and summer segments.

What better way to pick the pace back up than with Easter celebrations? I teamed up with Kobrand Wine and Spirits and Omaha Steaks, which sponsored the segments and this post, to share ideas for pairing wines with a traditional Easter menu.

Here is a link to my recent segment on ABC15 in Phoenix; full details on the pairings are described below:

Easter is a celebration, so why not break out the bubbles? In my opinion, Champagne goes with pretty much anything, but the delicate bubbles and flavor of Taittinger Brut La Francaise pair nicely with saltiness of Easter ham and the creaminess of scalloped potatoes. Another nice pairing with ham is Louis Jadot Rosé, which has fruit and floral flavors that enhance the sweetness of the glaze on the ham.

The dark plum and blackberry flavors of Sequoia Grove Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon bring out the rich flavors of leg of lamb and other red meats, as well as potatoes roasted with butter and sage. For a versatile, food-friendly white wine, the buttery, smooth finish of St. Francis Chardonnay is also a nice match with the creaminess of whipped potatoes or rainbow glazed carrots.

All of these wines are paired up with the yummy array of options from Omaha Steaks, which has complete Easter dinners that are, for the most part, “heat and eat.” Choose from sweet, smoky, or savory country hams, along with savory sides and a mouth-watering selection of carrot cake, pineapple upside down cake, and other desserts. Order online to have them delivered to your door. Or, pick them up locally if you are lucky enough to have one of their stores nearby.

Happy Easter!

On-The-Air: Los Angeles

Being a Southern girl, I am always up for any occasion that calls for a party and a football game.

The big game coming up next Sunday is a great excuse to gather friends, even if some of them are more focused on the commercials than the game itself.

Amy Sewell.jpg

If you’re hosting people next Sunday, here are a few food and drink ideas I shared today at CBS Los Angeles. This segment and this post were sponsored by the featured companies:

Better With Bacon

Even though we put up our Christmas tree on October 14 - a new personal best for me - I do wait until after Halloween to start my Thanksgiving preparations and TV segments.

That TV tour kicked off in a delicious way last week with a recipe for Pecan Pie with Bacon from Farmland Foods, which sponsored the segment and this post.  In my opinion, this offers that perfect combination of salty and sweet that makes dessert so delicious. 

Surf on over to their site for the recipe!

Snacks for the Road (and the Sky)

Several years ago, I found a yummy recipe for roasted chickpeas in a magazine. 

They were delicious, inexpensive, and healthy - and I could season them however I wanted (pass the cayenne pepper, please!). But, they required a bit of a time commitment (drying out the garbanzo beans, and keeping a close eye on them in the oven) and they weren’t exactly portable for my frequent travels.

So, I was super-excited to come across Biena Snacks - which is sponsoring this post and my recent segment at CBS in Los Angeles. These crunchy little snacks, loaded with flavor and texture, satisfy my need for a combination of salt and just a little bit of fat. Think potato chips, but protein-packed chickpeas instead. The savory ones also make a great topping for soups and salads (just sayin’). Don't let the “all-natural, gluten-free, vegan” label scare you - they are THAT GOOD, and receive two thumbs-up from my decidedly non-vegan husband.

I showed a variety pack with Sour Cream & Onion, Habanero, and - my personal favorite - Rockin’ Ranch. While I am partial to the savory varieties, for those with a sweet tooth, Honey Roasted or Cinnamon Crunch might fit the bill. If you have an affinity for chocolate - they even have a variety that tastes like Girl Scouts Thin Mints Cookies

You can find them at a wide range of stores, but buying them online lets you pick from all of their varieties and save when customizing your own variety pack of favorite flavors.

On the sweet side, granola bars and granola “minis” from MadeGood snacks are another new favorite in my carryon bag. They come in tiny portions for when you want just a little something sweet, which also makes them perfect for kids. And - they are “school safe” (and airplane-friendly), since they are free of the eight most common allergans like peanuts and tree nuts. But again, don’t let that scare you away! With a chewy granola texture and yummy flavors like chocolate chip, apple cinnamon, and chocolate chip banana, there is something to suit just about every taste.

Happy snacking!

Afternoon Snack Attack

This article in yesterday's Wall Street Journal - "Is Getting 'Hangry' Actually a Thing?" - caught my attention.  Researchers may debate whether such a thing exists, but whether or not it is real, many of us reach for a snack at some point during the afternoon.

Whether it's finding after-school snacks for kids to something easy to keep in the office fridge or enjoy on-the-go, that snack needs to tide us over until dinner.  This morning, I did segment on "Sonoran Living" in Phoenix that featured these protein-packed snack ideas from Tyson Foods, which sponsored the segment and this post.

Tyson Fun Nuggets  

Tyson Any'tizers Snackers

Jimmy Dean Protein Packs

Hillshire Snacking Small Plates

Golden Island Jerky

Happy snacking!