From The Nutritionist

Jennifer McQuillan, DTR
Author:
Jennifer McQuillan, DTR

Giving Thanks for Nature, Food & Loved Ones

With fall in full swing and Thanksgiving just around the corner, take some time to enjoy the season with friends and family. Delicious seasonal fruits and vegetables, a visit to the farm or orchard, Thanksgiving celebrations, and community outreach opportunities, bring nutrition, family and friends together all month long.

Throughout the year, my children and I visit our local farm; we pay close attention to what is being harvested. It’s amazing to see how interested they are as seeds grow into plentiful crops that they can pick, eat and use in baked goods. Our favorite time is around Thanksgiving; the aroma of warm apple cider donuts baking fills the air as we shop for our favorite fruits and veggies. It’s a wonderful reminder that all foods can fit!

Explore these ideas to maximize the season.

Visit Farms & Orchards
For many, November marks the end of local farmer’s market season, but farms and orchards offer activities as well as fruits and veggies to enjoy! Take advantage of apple picking and scoop up the last of the crazy- shaped gourds and pumpkins for baking. Then race your way out of the corn maze before the cold hits. Shop produce at indoor markets for favorites like sweet potatoes, kale, spaghetti squash, parsnips, pears, apples and cranberries. Many fall fruits and veggies are perfect to display as decoration and then delicious to eat as you wish. This colorful collection of produce provides fiber, flavor, and a variety of vitamins and minerals. It’s a perfect time to boost your intake of antioxidant-rich foods.

Explore Nature & Create
Take the crew on a nature scavenger hunt, visit Discover the Forest to find a park or forest near you. The treasures you find can bring color and life to your table without added cost. The kids can design centerpieces, place settings or wreaths for friends and family using acorns, pinecones, leaves and more! What a fun way to celebrate new traditions and stay active.

A Family Affair
Here are just a few ways to create memorable moments while nourishing your family:

  • Children can be involved in meal planning from start to finish by helping you create a shopping list, prepare and serve their own dishes.
  • Pumpkins are not just for decoration! Small, round pumpkins (typically found in the produce aisle this time of year) are perfect pie/baking pumpkins. They have a thicker, sweeter pulp. Remember to also keep the seeds- roast them for a crunchy, nutritious snack!
  • Create your own harvest trail mix – combine Pepperidge Farm® Cheddar Made with Whole Grain Goldfish®, some dark chocolate chips and dried cranberries.

Recipes – Traditional with a Twist
Have each family member pick a new recipe to try, or tweak a traditional favorite in preparation for Thanksgiving day. Why not puree parsnips in with your sweet potatoes? Try one or two recipes a week and vote on which makes the cut for the Thanksgiving feast.
A few of our favorite apps and sides:


Not much of a cook? Let Campbell do the work for you. Pour Campbell’s® Well Yes!® Butternut Squash Apple Bisque in the slow cooker and your first course is ready to go! Have little ones eager to help in the kitchen? Check out fantastic tips for cooking with kids.

Nourish Neighbors
At Campbell we are committed to outreach programs, such as Campbell Shared Communities. As we enjoy the gifts of fall, let’s keep giving back to our community in mind. Local food drives and soup kitchens are a great way for families and friends to come together and help those in need. Sign up to volunteer through church, school and sport group events that are posted in your community, or even start your own. What a rewarding way to help nourish our neighbors!

Warm Fall Wishes,
Jen

Jennifer McQuillan, DTR

Jennifer works as Associate Nutrition Analyst within the Regulatory Affairs and Nutrition team at Campbell Soup Company, where she has worked since 2012. She provides nutrition support and collaborates with sales and marketing partners within Foodservice business units. Her responsibilities include establishing product nutrition facts panels, calculating school meal contributions, and recipe analysis. Jennifer has experience in a variety of nutrition-related jobs, including hospital menu management implementation, product nutrition database development and customer service. She received her Bachelor of Science in Food and Nutrition from Saint Elizabeth in Morristown, NJ. Jennifer is a Registered Dietetic Technician.

References:

  1. http://www.discovertheforest.org/?m=1&_sm_au_=iVVq6tT10BdfMWnQ Discover the Forest
  2. http://www.eatright.org/resource/food/nutrition/healthy-eating/fall-produce-picks
  3. Cooking with Kids http://www.campbellskitchen.com/Articles/Cooking%20With%20Kids
  4. http://www.campbellcsr.com/shared/communities.html Shared Communities

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En Papillote Technique

1. Prepare the parchment paper
Get a large piece of parchment paper, approximately 2.5 times as large as a single portion of food. Cut the paper into a heart shape, lightly brushing one side with oil. This creates a slight barrier to water, preventing the paper from becoming soaked too quickly. Another option, though not as attractive, is to use tin foil instead of parchment paper.

2. Select the ingredients
This is a very quick-cooking approach, so it works best with tender proteins such as fish and shellfish. The accompanying ingredients, like julienned vegetables (matchstick size), must be small enough to cook at the same rate as the fish. In some cases the vegetables can be blanched, or quickly cooked in boiling water, to ensure proper doneness. Fresh herbs will go a long way in providing flavor.

3. Assemble the packet
Lay the oiled, heart-shaped paper on a baking tray, oiled side up. Season your vegetables with salt, pepper, extra virgin olive oil, and half of the herbs. Toss them around for an even coat. Place enough for one portion on half of the paper. Bunch them up to create a bed for your fish, leaving about two inches between the food and the edge of the paper. Place the seasoned fish on the vegetables and sprinkle the remaining herbs. Add a splash of the liquid on top of the fish, just enough to add moisture.

4. Seal the packet
To seal, fold the heart over to enclose the fish and vegetables (so it resembles a teardrop). Starting at the top of the heart, fold about 1/4" of the edge toward the center. Fold over again to create a seal. Continue along the length of the parchment, folding each section twice. When you get to the point of the heart, twist and fold to finish the seal.

5. Bake your dinner
Bake the packet in a 425°F oven for 10-14 minutes, depending on the size of the fish. The packet will puff and brown while in the oven and as the steam builds. When cooked, remove from the oven and carefully place the packet on a plate. With a knife or scissors cut an "X" on the top and fold back the edges for a dramatic presentation and a delicious, healthy meal.

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Spicy Flounder and Clams with Summer Vegetables

Prep Time: Less than 20 minutes
Cooking Time: 10-14 minutes
Yield: 2 servings

Ingredients:

  • 1/3 cup carrots, finely cut julienne
  • 1/3 cup sugar snap peas, cross cut thinly
  • 1/3 cup zucchini, yellow, finely cut julienne
  • 6 each cherry tomatoes, cut in half
  • 1 Tbsp. shallot, minced
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tsp. parsley, fresh, minced
  • Dash salt
  • Dash black pepper
  • 6 oz. fillet, flounder (2 fillets, 3oz. each)
  • 2 Tbsp. Low Sodium Spicy Hot V8® 100% Vegetable juice
  • 3/4 lb. clams, in the shell

Instructions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 425°F.
  2. Combine the carrots, sugar snap peas, zucchini, cherry tomatoes, shallot, garlic, extra virgin olive oil, half of the parsley, salt and pepper in a bowl. Toss well to combine.
  3. Lightly oil two large heart shaped pieces of parchment paper.
  4. With the parchment paper on a sheet tray, place half of the vegetable mixture in the center of one half of each heart leaving about a 2" border.
  5. Lightly season each fillet with salt and pepper. Fold or roll the fillet to create a uniform thickness and place on top of the vegetables.
  6. Top the fish with the remaining herbs and the Low Sodium Spicy Hot V8® 100% Vegetable juice.
  7. Place half of the clams around each portion of vegetables and fish.
  8. Fold the heart over to enclose the fish and vegetables so that it resembles a teardrop.
  9. Starting at the top of the heart, fold about 1/4" of the edge towards the center. Fold over again to create a seal.
  10. Continue with this method along the length of the parchment packet folding each section twice to make an attractive edge.
  11. When you get to the point of the heart twist and fold to finish the seal.
  12. Bake the packets for 10-14 minutes (depending on the thickness of the fish).
  13. Remove from the oven and serve by cutting an "X" in the top and folding back the edges.

Nutrition Information (per serving):

Calories 180, Total Fat 9g, Saturated Fat 1g, Monounsaturated Fat 5g, Polyunsaturated Fat 1g, Cholesterol 50mg, Sodium 450mg, Carbohydrate 10g, Fiber 2g, Sugar 4g, Protein 16g.