Stuffed Meat Loaf


Meat Loaf Again….Honestly, I was never really a big fan of meat loaf. We had it quite often when I was growing up as it’s relatively easy to make and serves as an economical meal. Traditional meat loaf is basically hamburgers, formed into a loaf verses a patty and then slathered in a sweet sauce otherwise known as, Ketchup! Over time, recipes have evolved for this All-American comfort food by adding some innovative cooking techniques such as grilling and smoking it. Some recipes call for wrapping it in bacon which adds loads of flavor and extra calories. My new sentimental favorite way to prepare it is by stuffing it! We need to flavor the meat, so for this recipe we are using the No Moosteak Grill n’ Rub Seasoning Blend. It’s great for burgers, and even better for meat loaf! The sautéed mushroom stuffing gives it that comfort feel and adds an elegant touch to the dish. The Lemon Thyme Finishing Salt really enhances that next layer of flavor, while the soft bread keeps it moist.

Stuffed Meat Loaf

• 1 ½ lbs. ground beef
• 2 eggs, beaten
• 2 T. whipping cream or milk
• ¼ C. tomato sauce
• 2 T. Zesty Moose No Moosteak Grill n’ Rub Seasoning Blend
• ½ lb. (8 oz.) Mushrooms, sliced
• 1 C. white onion
• 2 T. unsalted butter
• 2 C. soft fresh bread cut into cubes
• 2 T. fresh parsley
• 1 tsp. Zesty Moose Lemon Thyme Finishing Salt



Mix Together
In a large bowl, beat together the eggs, cream or milk, tomato sauce and the No Moosteak Grill n’ Rub.

Finished Mix
Add beef and mix well.

Fill Bottom of Pan

Pat half of the meat mixture into a greased 9-in. x 3-in. loaf pan; set aside.

Mushroom and Onions
For stuffing, saute` the mushrooms and onion in butter over medium heat for 3 min.

Add Bread

Add the bread pieces, parsley and the Lemon Thyme Finishing Salt.

Reduced Down

Saute` until the bread crumbs are lightly brown.

Half Stuffed


Spoon the stuffing over the bottom layer of meat;


cover with remaining meat mixture and gently press down. Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour, drain fat as needed.

Out of the Oven

Serves 6

Prep Time: 30 Min.
Cook Time: 1 Hr.
Total Time: 1 Hr. 30 Min.


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Food and Flavor Forecast 2015

Fancy Food

My recent trip to the Winter Fancy Food Show in San Francisco showcased over 1,400 exhibitors  from across the US and 35 Countries and regions specializing in some of the most amazing and exotic foods and trends for 2015. Snack foods and bars have gone to new levels which include seaweed to unexpected ways to elevate veggies. Exotic teas and drinks are gaining in popularity. Bitter, fermented foods and drinks are on the rise. Smoked and grilled foods remain popular. Incorporating ingredients into foods that offer health benefits is a huge plus. Consumers are paying even closer attention to food labels. According to Mintel, ¾ of American Adults consider themselves foodies. One of the trends for this year has consumers wanting an adventurous culinary experience in addition to simplicity.

I had the opportunity to get a firsthand look at some of this year’s top food and flavor trends.

Flavor and Food Trends for 2015

  1. Spicier Complex New Regional Style Foods

Consumers are acquiring a more sophisticated palate for spicier and more complex flavors such as Asian and new regional style foods that include exotic dishes from other regions like Thai Japanese, Filipino and Vietnamese.

  1. New Flavors and Ingredients Offering Health Benefits

Seaweed showed up in a multitude of snack foods such as chips, hummus and popcorn. Seaweed also has its health benefits and is chocked full of thyroid-supporting iodine and vitamin B-12. Food Artisans have managed to turn vegetable haters into lovers by making them the star ingredient in a convenient and healthy snack food. For starters we have Broccoli Chips with White Cheddar, Brussel Bytes; how clever is that? If you are really adventurous; give the Arugula Cabbage Veggie Crunch a try!

  1. New Twists on Sweet and Salty Snack Foods

Companies are getting innovative when it comes to snack food and health bars. Consumers are embracing the unusual combinations of ingredients and flavors in their favorite snacks and bars. Savory flavors like Roasted Jalapeno, Sweet chili and even honey-smoked barbeque top the list. Sweeter combinations include Orange Honey or Cherry Pistachio. How about Sundried Tomato with Basil or Olive with Walnuts for a new twist on flavor!

  1. Bitter Foods and Beverages

Consumers are looking for bold flavor food experiences. Craft Beers, Dark Chocolate, Coffee and Arugula have maintained their popularity. Consumers want to try even stronger and more intense flavors with darker coffees and chocolates, hoppy beers, cocktails with bitters and vegetables such as kale and collard greens.

  1. Sodium and Sugar Reduction Solutions

Public health debates continue about added processed sugars and high levels of sodium being put into our foods. Consumers are on the lookout for ways in which to reduce sodium and replace processed sugar with alternative sweeteners. Diabetes and obesity are on the rise, and the attention towards food labels continues to grow. The FDA has recently issued a recommendation for companies to display information about added sugars on food labels. This will be a top priority for consumers and food manufacturers. Sweeteners that are gaining in popularity are, Stevia, Maguey Syrup, Honey, Agave and Maple Syrup. The newest introduction to the all-natural sweetener trend is the use of Monk Fruit.

  1. Turmeric: The Exotic Superfood

Turmeric is a culinary spice native to Southeast India. It is a plant of the Ginger Family. Turmeric has a peppery, warm and bitter flavor and a mild fragrance slightly reminiscent of orange and ginger. It is best known as one of the main ingredients used to make curry. Because of its deep yellow-orange color, Turmeric was traditionally called, “Indian Saffron.” Turmeric, the bright yellow of the spice rainbow has long been used as an Anti-Inflammatory Agent to treat a variety of conditions.

  1. Food Packaging Trends

Consumer’s expectations demand sustainable earth-friendly products with a transparency about what they are consuming, where the product is made and clarity about what they, the company stand for. Labels will move from clean to clear with simpler claims and packaging. Biodegradable and reusable are likely to expand. Food manufacturers will undergo a similar transformation as companies are taking it upon themselves to align with the shifting expectations of the consumer along with the FDA Label Overhaul.


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Chili Lime Shrimp Enchiladas with Parmesan Jalapeno Cream Sauce

Plated Enchiladas

Dining out is a rarity for us but one of our local favorite places for Mexican Fare has a fabulous seafood enchilada dish on their menu, and of course I had to pick apart the dish and re-create it at home. I did get a little tip or two from our waitress. So, after two attempts at it….Here It Is! For this dish I am using two of our most popular products that really add to that depth of flavor I was looking for. The Chili Lime Finishing Salt adds a nice finish to the perfectly roasted shrimp. In my opinion, this is the absolute best method for cooking shrimp. The jalapeno cream sauce by itself was a little bland for my taste, but our Parmesan Pepper Pesto Blend really added a richness that finished out the entire dish. If you are looking for a quick go to dinner this would not be my choice as the recipe does take a bit of time. If you follow my prepping method below and prepare the sauce the day before this can easily be a real time saver here. I like to make this on the weekends when I am not pressed for time and you can easily freeze half of it for later. I will say the extra time is worthy of the effort as this dish will not disappoint! ~Enjoy!


• 1 lb. medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
• 2 T. olive oil
• 2 cloves garlic, minced
• 1 small onion, diced
• 2 C. green cabbage, shredded
• 4 C. spinach leaves
• 2 C. Monterey Jack cheese, shredded
• 1 ¼ tsp. TZM Chili Lime Finishing Salt
• 20 (6 inch) corn tortillas

Sauce Ingredients

Preparing the Parmesan Jalapeno Cream Sauce:

• 2 T. unsalted butter
• 2 T. flour
• 1 ½ C. chicken broth
• ¾ C. sour cream
• 2 jalapenos, seeded and minced
• ¼ C. cilantro, chopped
• 2 tsp. TZM Parmesan Pepper Pesto Blend


Preparing the Shrimp and Filling:

Shrimp Prep

Peel and devein the shrimp.  Place shrimp in a bowl and drizzle with half of the olive oil. Season with ½ tsp. of the TZM Chili Lime Finishing Salt and gently toss to combine. Pre-heat the oven to 400 degrees.

Shrimp B4 Cooking

Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil, and spray using non-stick cooking spray. Arrange the shrimp on the sheet. Place the shrimp in the oven

Shrimp After Cooking

and roast until pink, firm and cooked through, about 6-8 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool

Shredded Shrimp

before dicing into bite size pieces.

Saute Onions & Garlic

In a large skillet, heat the remaining olive oil, add the garlic and onion and cook until the onions become translucent, about 5 minutes.

Add Spinach

Add the cabbage and spinach and

Cook Down Spinach

cook down. Once the spinach has cooked down, season with remaining TZM Chili Lime Finishing Salt.

Add Shrimp

Add the shrimp and gently toss to combine.

Complete Mixture

Set aside.

For the sauce:

Rue Ingredients

In a heavy duty saucepan, melt the butter and whisk in the flour to form a paste.

Melted Down

Slowly add the chicken broth and stir constantly until well blended, about 2 minutes.

Add Seasonings to Rue

Stir in sour cream; add the jalapenos and the TZM Parmesan Pepper Pesto Blend.

Finished Rue

Simmer until the sauce has thickened, about 2 minutes.

Add Cilantro to Rue

Remove from heat and add in the cilantro.

For the Tortillas:

Fry tortilla

Pre-heat a non-stick skillet over medium heat. Spray pan with an olive oil cooking spray. Place one tortilla into the skillet; then using a spatula, lift and turn and spray the second side with the cooking spray. Use the spatula to press down on each side until you have a nice light brown color. Each tortilla will take approximately 10 seconds.

To assemble:

Add Mixture to Tortilla

Lay tortilla on a flat surface and spoon the shrimp mixture down the center,

Add Cheese

sprinkle with cheese. Resist overfilling; I use about 3 teaspoons. Roll the tortilla and place seam side down onto a sprayed baking dish. Fill remaining tortillas with the shrimp mixture.

Pour Sauce on Top

Pour the cream sauce over the top. Place in a 375 degree oven, cover and bake for 20 minutes.

Plated Enchiladas

Yields: 20 Enchiladas

Total Time: 1 Hr. 45 Min.
Cook Time: 2o Min.

Prep Time: I like to prep this dish in the order using the method steps above. The sauce can be made the day before, refrigerated and then warmed up again prior to pouring over the top.
Ingredient Prep – 30 Min.
Shrimp & Filling – 15 Min.
Sauce – 10 Min.
Fry Tortillas and Assemble – 30 Min.

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Understanding Processed Foods and Why Eliminating Them Matters

-By Diana Tap – May 28, 2014

What Is Processed Foods:
Processed foods can vary slightly, but it usually refers to foods that are packaged in boxes, cans, bags or packages. These foods need to be processed extensively to be edible and are done so by adding additional ingredients that are usually unpronounceable. These additions then change the food from its original natural state.
You can determine whether a food is processed by looking at the ingredient list. The longer the ingredient list, the more processed a food is likely to be. The more processing steps involved the more nutrients and vitamins are then lost. Processed foods are usually found in the center aisles of the grocery store and are more likely to contain ingredients that are unrecognizable such as preservatives, food dyes and chemicals. These are not real food ingredients that you would cook with at home.
Processing also refers to the structural change in some foods like crackers. These usually have Trans fats added to increase their shelf life. Trans fats are created when vegetable oils are overheated and the molecular structure of the fat changes. Trans fats are linked to serious diseases like heart and cancer and should be avoided. In other words, processing usually means removing nutrients, swapping good nutrients for bad, increasing calorie content and removing other valuable things like fibre.

Processed Food Facts:
Did you know that 90% of the food in grocery stores is processed? 70% of the average American’s diet is made up of processed foods. In 2007, I made the decision to eliminate the majority of processed foods from our diet and that percentage was 70% of what we were consuming.
Processing affects the taste and properties of the food. Food manufacturers will then add cheap or artificial ingredients such as sugars, salt, fats or additives to restore the lost flavor properties and improve the texture for appearance and to extend the shelf life of the food.
Did you know that 100 years ago, the leading cause of death in my grandparents generation was infectious diseases. They ate a lot more whole foods, with higher nutritional value. Obesity wasn’t a problem.

Why Foods Are Processed:
Convenience is the main drive for processed foods. Food travels long distances and it sits in supermarket shelves for long periods of time and so preservation and safety concerns regarding some foods are an issue. Processing is used to kill harmful bacteria and other microorganisms in order to extend the shelf life.

The Trouble With Fat-Free:
• Fat-Free foods must have less than 0.5 grams of fat per serving
• Low-Fat foods must have 3 grams of fat or less per serving
• Reduced Fat foods must have at least 25% less fat than regular versions of those foods.
• Light foods must have either 1/3 fewer calories or 50% less fat
Fat-Free also lacks in taste and flavor and to make up for that, food makers will add other ingredients like sugar, flour, thickeners and salt and this adds calories. The foods are usually not appealing and less satisfying and you end up consuming more of them.

Ingredients and Foods To Avoid Whenever Possible
• Canned foods that are high in sodium or fat.
• Flavored chips, crackers and snacks.
• Frozen dinners
• Sugary cereals
• Processed meats – Look for meat labeled, Minimally Processed.
• Most condiments including bottled sauces, dressings, marinades, pre-flavored packaged products and boxed foods.
• All soda/pop – regular contains sugar and diet contains Aspartame
• Any products that specifically list these ingredients on the label: MSG, Corn Syrup Solids, Yellow 5&6, Blue#1, Red40, artificial colors and sweeteners.

Take A Reasonable and Practical Approach (Baby Steps Here Or You Will Get Discouraged)!
It’s important to understand that you are not going to eliminate everything, but you can significantly reduce it! You have to take a practical approach and eliminate what you can, and then look for healthier alternative products. Incorporate the use of fresh ingredients, like fruits and vegetables. Cook more at home and look for healthy recipes that contain minimal ingredients. Plan ahead and prepare meals in advance. Eliminate Fast Food!! If this is the only thing you end up eliminating altogether, trust me when I say you will notice a huge difference in the way you feel and your body will thank you!

If you have any questions or you just need a little encouragement along the way….I’ll be there for you!
I’ve been through this myself and the most difficult step is going to be the first one. It does get easier and you will feel better and have more energy. Send me an email at and let me know your progress. I’d love to hear from you!

Source: WebMD

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CONTEST! Guess The Product – Win That Product Giveaway!

The New Addition to our Culinary Line is almost ready for launch!
We’re hosting a Product Giveaway and you will need to head on over to our Facebook Page to Participate!

Terms and Conditions:

1. Contest Clues For Guess The New Product… Will Be Posted On Our Facebook Page.
“Like” And Participate.
2. Post your guess on our Facebook Wall or via Email To:
3. Sharing clues and /or interacting with other people is highly encouraged.
4. You can work in teams to come up with the answer or participate individually.
5. Keep Track Of The Clues Posted.
6. Use The Clues And Correctly Guess The New Product…Win The Product!

Here’s How It Works……

Starting Thursday, May 15, 2014 we will post a clue on our Facebook page. The clue describes something about the new product line. We will randomly add new clues and continue to post them on our Facebook page. You will need to keep track of each clue. Each clue will be a little more specific about what the New Product May Be. You will need to use the clues and then tell us what you believe the product is. Be specific. The contest will end on Thursday, May 22, 2014 at 11:59PM MDT. All correct answers submitted either by email and/or posted will be chosen at random and we will pick 4 winners!


No Purchase Necessary
Giveaway winners will be contacted via email and will be shared with your name and last initial on our Facebook Page! If you are chosen as a Winner you will need to respond and provide an email address within 48 hours or you will be disqualified and a new winner will be chosen. We will not share any other information with anyone except to facilitate shipment of your prize and will be shipped directly. Giveaway is open to US residents only. We are not liable for errors stemming from lost/delayed e-mail, posting or typographical errors, technical failures, etc. Void where prohibited by law. This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with, Facebook and by participating you release Facebook of any liability associated with this giveaway. This giveaway is being held by Envision Products, Inc. d/b/a The Zesty Moose. We may be reached at

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Asian Chicken

Asian Chicken Plated

This easy at-home version of one of my favorite Asian dishes will satisfy any appetite and goes way beyond the takeout container. This full flavored marinade uses basic on-hand ingredients which is a real time-saver here. One of our newest additions to our Signature Seasoning Collection is the Hair Raisin’ Asian Blend. Although the name may indicate “Hot” the flavor profile is light and savory and a lot of spicy! The term Hair Raisin’ is a trait associated with the behavior of the animal in that like a dog, when moose are agitated, the hairs on their backs stand up straight! We like to have fun with our product names. We want you to have fun cooking…So take a culinary trip around Asia right from your very own kitchen!

 Asian Chicken Ingredients

Asian Chicken


Asian Chicken Marinade

In a bowl, combine the soy sauce, lemon juice, honey, garlic and Hair Raisin’ Asian Seasoning. Mix well.

Marinade in the bag

Place chicken into a large food storage bag. Pour marinade over chicken and seal bag, turning to coat. Place in the refrigerator and marinate for 4 hours or preferably overnight. Preheat the grill to 350-400 degrees.

Chicken on the Grill

Grill the chicken for 7 minutes on the first side. Turnover and grill for 5 minutes on the second side. For larger portions, you will need to turn and grill for an additional 2-3 minutes.

Asian Chicken Plated


Yields: -2-4

Total Time: 25 Min.

Prep Time: 10 Min.

Cook Time: 15 Min.

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Pictsweet Frozen Vegetables


When you spend some time getting to know the story behind the Pictsweet Company you will appreciate the commitment and hard work forged by this family owned and family run business for 4 generations. J.O. “Tank” Tankersley was the man behind the vision of taking power from hydroelectric dams and significantly reducing the cost of operating “quick freeze” commercial freezers. His innovation to apply this to crops of vegetables would expand the frozen vegetable industry.

And so a family legacy was born. It’s a legacy that evolved out of hard work, perseverance and dedication to growing the best vegetables, picking them at just the right time and using the best practices to get them to people at their peak of flavor. This family tradition of hard work and commitment continues, and it has made Pictsweet one of the best growers and distributors of frozen vegetables in the United States. Since 1945, they have been serving your family the same vegetables they serve to theirs.

Pictsweets All Natural Vegetables include over 80 delicious varieties ranging from regional specialties like cut Okra to America’s all-time favorites like Green Peas. Their website has some tasty recipes to choose from for making soups & salads, appetizers, baked goods, entrées, and side dishes. Here is a link to their website:

I buy fresh vegetables whenever possible but during those Months when I am unable to get them fresh, I will use Pictsweet’s Deluxe and Natural varieties. They also offer Steam’ables, which are microwavable and convenient for busy families; as well as their New Deluxe Sides. Now you can serve up indulgent dishes that look and taste like gourmet without a lot of time or effort. With Deluxe Sides, you just heat and serve right in their own handy package. I have not personally tried the Steam’ables or Deluxe Sides.

Pictsweet ….From The Farm and To The Table…There’s no better reason to indulge in a tantalizing treat that just happens to be good for you!


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