Thursday, February 23, 2012

February finds...

February has been a busy month for me.  In addition to the normal days, it's packed w/ Groundhogs day, Valentine's Day, Mardi Gras, an extra day this month and Fiber One! 

As a voluntary brand Ambassador for Allrecipes I often have assignments to complete for a select brand partner and provide feedback. I'm not compensated for my time, work, or ingredients and only receive the product for testing and feedback purposes.

At the mention of Fiber One, I can already imagine the wrinkling noses and the thoughts of  "Ewwww gross" crossing the minds of some of my readers, and I don't blame you b/c I did the same thing. 

When I first opened the box of cereal and saw it, many descriptions ran through my mind.  At best this cereal looks like food for the canine world, and at worst looks like droppings from the rodent world.

One of the Fiber One assignments was to make the Fiber one haystacks which are a friendly treat for those who are managing their weight.  I personally couldn't get over the look of this cereal so I did the next best thing and I pulvarised it to where it looked like flour.  I read through the reviews and in this case it's either a "you love it" or "you hate it" recipe. The "hate it" reviews mainly had issues w/ the texture and taste of the fiber one cereal, and I don't blame them. The look of the cereal is NOT appealing and the taste isn't much better. I melted my chocolate using a double boiler, and mixed in the PB. After pulvarising the cereal I mixed it into my melted chocolate, I then poured the chocolate mixture into a mini muffin lined w/ paper cups for a pretty good PB cup.

Now that the first assignment was out of the way, I then was required to create a Fiber One recipe.  I knew that anything I made, I would make w/ pulvarised Fiber One.  The first thought was to make a Fiber One Hazelnut Blueberry Muffin

I'm a great cook, but these were just NASTY.  I tried to replace a portion of the flour I would normally use w/ the fiber was a fail. Did I mention that I'm NOT reimbursed, even for my ingredients?

I really wanted to get the assignment finished and so I brain stormed and came up w/ a recipe that I called Arancini balls and meat sauce

My experience using Fiber One will NOT be a repeat. I still have plenty of the cereal left - I think I'll pulvarise the rest of it and make Christmas Ornaments b/c I'm not going to eat the rest of it.  The biggest problem many of my fellow brand ambassadors had, was that the cereal contains aspartame which from studies is not healthy.  My Fiber One assignments completed, I moved forward with other cooking endeavours.

I made Alaskan Cod and Shrimp with a fresh tomato sauce and tho it was quick to prepare it was lacking on flavour.  I'm thinking next time I make it I'll try making the sauce w/ a cabernet sauvignon, and then a bit of rosemary for added depth.

One of my most recent favourite finds was Easy Tuscan Chicken

This was incredibly delicious!!! I'm heavy into using my slow cooker, and given my chicken breasts were frozen, I had to slightly modify this recipe to make it work for me.  I seasoned the chicken breasts w/ a little bit of granulated garlic and Italian seasoning and I put them in my crockpot along w/ 1/4 cup water on high for about 3 hours and then turned it to low for another 2 hours. I made the sauce as instructed w/ the exception I added in the tomatoes along w/ the other ingredients.  This is me being a food snob, but make sure you use a good quality white wine -rule of thumb, if you wouldn't drink it don't cook w/ it!  I used Barefoot Pinot Grigio. This sauce in all it's simplicity amazingly delicious, packed w/ flavour and I plan on making it again!
I often look for "faceless" recipes that need pictures and reviews. I tried a new recipe for Penne a la vodka.
I didn't see the need for farfalle (bowtie) pasta, so I used penne instead.  I wasn't too crazy about this recipe, and I believe the problem at hand w/ this recipe can be attributed to the following issue.  This recipe is relying too much on the Italian Sausage for flavouring.  This is a decent recipe but not spectacular. I won't be repeating it again.
Once again back to crockpot cooking.  I decided to make meatloaf and figured that since my day was going to be busy that I would try meatloaf in the crockpot.  It turned out very good! I'm going to work on the flavouring b/c while it was moist, and not dry it didn't have that much flavour.

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I am a voluntary Allrecipes Allstar Brand Ambassador and I do not receive compensation for my work with Any product received is only used for experience-based reviews on The Daily Gourmet. The reviews, content and opinions expressed in this blog are the sole opinions of Sarah.

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