Category Archives: Cook – Recipes from Friends

Tuesday’s Tool: The Tortilla Press

 

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Cinco de Mayo is almost here! It’s time to start planning a delicious Mexican-inspired meal that will impress your family and friends.

HIC’s Tortilla Press is specially designed for creating 6.25-inch homemade tortillas and other artisan flat breads of the perfect thickness every time.  Made from heavyweight aluminum for durability, the sturdy handle provides for effortless leverage when making     tortillas.

If you’ve never made your own tortillas, you don’t know how easy it is to do. (Five simple steps!)

  1. Prepare your dough recipe or use ready-made dough.
  2. For best results, line both sides of the press with plastic wrap, wax paper, or parchment paper to prevent dough from sticking to the press.
  3. Roll a small amount of dough into a ball and place it in the center of the press. Flatten the dough slightly by hand then close the press.
  4. Fold the handle over the press and apply a firm pressure to create griddle-ready rounds.
  5. Gently remove the plastic wrap from the flattened dough and cook according to recipe.

The press is handy for making a variety of flatbreads, including Caribbean roti, focaccia, moo shoo pancakes, mini pie or tart shells, and more.

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You can purchase the HIC Tortilla Press here.

Stainless Steel Straws

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Here in the U.S. it is estimated that we use nearly 500 million plastic strays each day. That is enough plastic straws to wrap around the earth almost 9 times every year!

Plastic straws and stirrers are listed as one of the top 10 marine plastic debris, contaminating our water and our marine life as well as so much more as it is carried up the food chain.

Change the tide of pollution and look for ways to cut back on plastic pollution this Earth Day. Using stainless steel reusable straws are one of the many ways you can make an impact.

HIC’s 18/8 Stainless Steel Drinking Straws add a splash of style to everyday beverages, smoothies, shakes, party drinks and cocktails. More economical and environmentally friendly than using traditional disposable straws, these straws are ideal for use at home or on the go.

They have a polished finish for a great look and are angled to make drinking from them easier. The reusable straws won’t rust, corrode, break, stain, absorb or transfer food flavors or odors.

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The set includes four 18/8 stainless steel straws and a nylon-bristle cleaning brush, perfectly sized to fit inside the straws.

Wash in warm, soapy water and scrub the interior with the cleaning brush, then rinse well. They are also dishwasher safe.

You can purchase them here.

A Decade of Giving to C-CAP Chicago

Careers Through Culinary Arts Program Chicago

Robert Laub, president, HIC, Harold Import Co. Nicola Copeland, C-CAP Chicago, Program Coordinator David Blackmon, Culinary Arts Program Director

The 10th annual Culinary Futures Chicago Dinner Reception and Silent Auction to support the Chicago Careers Through Culinary Arts Program (C-CAP), was once again a huge success.

Held March 11, 2018, the C-CAP Chicago students enthusiastically showcased their culinary talents by serving up delicious recipes to the more than 200 industry professionals in attendance. The event raised more than $64,000!

Specifically, the annual Chicago Culinary Futures Benefit brings together industry professionals and friends in Chicago for the International Home + Housewares Show to benefit C-CAP Chicago students. All proceeds from this special event will benefit C-CAP Chicago. Careers Through Culinary Arts Program is a national non-profit organization that works with public schools to prepare at-risk students for college and careers in the restaurant and hospitality industry.
Through the years, with HIC’s help and support, C-CAP Chicago students were awarded more than $500,000 in scholarships. Learn more.
A huge “Thank You” goes out to all the evening’s sponsors, which included, Allstate; Conimar Group, LLC; HIC, Harold Import Co.; Primula; R.S.V.P. International, Inc.; Southern Wine & Spirits of Illinois; Tito’s Handmade Vodka, and US Foods, with HFN serving as the official media sponsor.

“C-CAP Chicago is so grateful for the ongoing support of the entire team at Harold Import Company and the Housewares Industry,” expressed Nicola Copeland, C-CAP Chicago, Program Coordinator. “With your help, we have supported the dreams of more than 30 students to attend college. This year, we’ll get the opportunity to support 13 more so they may achieve their goals.”

 

C-CAP/Denzel Thornton Memorial Scholarship

In addition to the C-CAP Chicago Scholarship Winners, HIC presented the C-CAP/Denzel Thornton Memorial Scholarship. This scholarship, which was created in remembrance of Thornton, an alum who was tragically killed outside his workplace, honors his spirit and determination.
“Those who knew Denzel, knew that he loved his C-CAP family, and was determined to give back to the community that supported him,” explains Robert Laub, president of HIC, Harold Import Co. “We are honored to present both Jefferson Martinez-Rodriguez and Aliyah Taylor with this award, which honors all that Denzel embodied.”

Careers Through Culinary Arts Program Chicago

Jefferson Martinez-Rodriguez (center), co-recipient of Denzel Thornton Memorial Scholarship is on hand to receive his award and celebrate with the C-CAP Chicago family.

“Being awarded with the Denzel Thornton Memorial Scholarship from Harold Import Company makes these dreams closer than ever,” explains Jefferson Martinez-Rodriguez. “Thus, I will give the next generations a taste of my passion for my career that will hopefully influence a chain reaction.”

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Aliyah Taylor, David Blackmon- Program Coordinator of CTE Culinary Arts & Hospitality Management Programs, and Richard Grausman, C-CAP Founder. (from left)

Adds Aliyah Taylor, “The Denzel Thornton Memorial Alumni Scholarship from Harold Import Company will empower me by helping my academic and creative longevity in my community. The control over my education is all I ask for, and I believe with this scholarship I will get exactly that. My ability to obtain my education without financial struggle is exactly what I need to be able give back all that has been given to me.”

 

Not only does HIC help raise money at this popular industry event, HIC’s support for these students continues throughout the year. A portion of the proceeds from the HIC Essentials line of kitchen gadgets are donated to Careers through Culinary Arts Program (C-CAP).

For more information on C-CAP, visit www.ccapinc.org, or C-CAP Chicago.
For more information about HIC, Harold Import Co.’s participation in the Chicago event and the Denzel Thornton Memorial Alumni Scholarship, email media@haroldimport.com

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Make a Style Statement with HIC’s Copper Barware

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Add the subtle and warm glow of copper to the bar with HIC’s eye-catching collection of bar tools. In line with bar and kitchen décor trends, the copper bar tools are the perfect choice for every home bar enthusiast as well as the professional.

Following contemporary style trends, copper elevates our barware collection with style and taste. With the HIC Copper Barware, you’ll enjoy the benefits of copper, which is known to enhance the drinking experience. The copper-plated 18/8 stainless steel barware insulates the beverage to maintain drink temperature.

From Margaritas to Moscow Mules, the HIC Copper Barware is poised to add a creative style to a perfectly prepared drink.

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The complete collection includes a Copper Cocktail Shaker, Double Jigger, Hip Flask, and on-trend hammered copper Moscow Mule Drinking Mug. For more information, visit HIC, Harold Import Co.
 

Tuesday’s Tool: The World’s Greatest Dual-Action Potato Masher and Ricer

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Rich, creamy and smooth!

Thanksgiving is almost here, and that means mashed potatoes are on the menu. The World’s Greatest Dual-Action Potato Masher and Ricer from HIC, Harold Import Co. is specially designed with a spring-loaded action to mash and rice potatoes ensuring lumps are eliminated in a single action! More efficient than using a typical masher with open-wire design, the Dual-Action Potato Masher and Ricer breaks food down with the wires and extrudes it through the holes in the built-in ricer disc to eliminate lumps for a smoother, creamier texture.

MasherInUseA versatile addition to your holiday cooking tools collection, the Potato Masher Ricer is great for mashing softer cooked foods, like potatoes, yams, pumpkin, squash, rutabagas, turnips, parsnips, carrots, apples, bananas, and more.

Made from 18/8 stainless steel, The World’s Greatest Dual-Action Potato Masher Ricer is sturdy, durable, and will never rust or transfer flavors or odors between uses.

Easy to use and clean. Rinse immediately before starches harden. Dishwasher safe for a thorough cleaning.

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Coeur à La Crème: Getting to the Heart of Things this Valentine’s Day

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Simple to make, and delightful to eat, the Coeur à la Crème is a classic French dessert made with a few simple ingredients and topped with fresh fruit, making it a great way to celebrate Valentine’s Day – or any day – with a loved one.

The French call it coeur à la crème (or heart of cream). It is a rich and creamy dessert that is believed to get its start in the French countryside way back in the Middle Ages. Most likely born out of efficiency, and the desire to use all ingredients on hand, the dairymaids discovered that when the whey drained from the milk during traditional cheesemaking, the remaining curds could be mixed with leftover cream to create a delightfully light and fresh cheese that was made even more tasty when topped with the sweetness of the fresh fruits of the season.

The dessert is relatively inexpensive to make, featuring only a few ingredients, and just a bit of preparation time.   Using only cottage cheese, cream cheese, and heavy cream, which are then mixed and placed in a mold lined with cheesecloth so it can drain, the creamy treat is ready to eat in a few hours — although some Coeur à la Crème makers like to prepare this two days ahead of time to allow for the proper draining, and melding of the flavors of the dairy used.

Essential to the process is the draining of the liquids from the cheeses. The dairymaids of old used a strainer or colander to do the trick, but today, it is traditional to prepare it in a heart-shaped Coeur à la Crème mold. Made of porcelain and perforated at the bottom to allow the ‘whey’ to drain, and the curds to remain, the Coeur à la Crème mold is lined with cheesecloth or kitchen paper, and set above a pan or bowl in the refrigerator for a few hours, before it is ready to enjoy.

Molds vary in sizes, but the individual 4” (15 oz.) molds are a great way to serve up a romantic treat for two on Valentine’s Day, or even for individual servings at a dinner party.

This fresh cheese creation is delightful when created in the classic heart-shaped mold, and served as a complement to afternoon tea, alongside a cup of coffee for dessert, or a glass of wine for a romantic, and creamy, way to top off a Valentine’s Day meal with your loved one.

Quick and easy to create, here is an old-fashioned Coeur à la Crème recipe that will delight anyone this Valentine’s Day.

Old-Fashioned Coeur à la Crème

  • 1, 8 oz. container of whipped cream cheese
  • 1, 8 oz. container of cottage cheese, farmer cheese, or ricotta
  • 1 cup of heavy cream
  • 1 container of fresh berries, washed
  • or, 1 package of frozen berries, thawed.

1. Blend the cream cheese with cottage cheese, and slowly add the heavy cream. This can be done by hand or in a food processor.

2. Line the Coeur à la Crème mold with cheesecloth or kitchen paper and pour in the blended cheese.

3. Place the mold over a bowl (to catch the draining whey), the slip it into the refrigerator, and chill for at least four hours.

4. Once firm and draining is complete, unmold the cheese by carefully turning it top-side-down on the serving platter.

When ready to eat, it is traditionally served with fresh berries or jam, but can also be topped with a chocolate sauce. Or, you can sweeten things up a bit by mixing a bit of sugar, vanilla and a fruit liqueur to create a fruit sauce that will accompany fresh berries. If desired, the Coeur a la Crème can even be served as an appetizer, and topped with savory seasonings or herbs.

However you serve it, the Coeur à la Crème is a perfect treat for Valentine’s Day, yet can be enjoyed all year round.

To learn more about HIC, Harold Import Co/’s Coeur à la Crème, available in an individual 4″ (15 oz.) size, or 7.25″ (24. oz) size, visit here.

To purchase, visit here.

 

Tuesday’s Tool: Fante’s Mamma Maria’s Mezzaluna

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Fante’s Mamma Maria’s Mezzaluna Rocking Chopper quickly transforms ingredients with a speed and efficiency that’s unmatched by knives to save time during food preparation.

Made in Italy, the beautifully curved blade, with its half-moon profile, makes quick work of chopping and mincing foods. Featuring a 9-1/2” stainless steel blade with beechwood handles, this versatile addition to cutlery and chef knives helps prepare quick healthy meals. Use it for mincing and chopping garlic, herbs, fruits and vegetables, leafy greens, even block chocolate, and more. It doubles nicely as a pizza cutter, too. Its ergonomic design is comfortable and easy to use.

To learn more about the Mezzaluna, visit us here. To purchase, visit our Where to Buy page, or here.

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