Hibiscus Flowers in Syrup:
Two ways that I have used the flowers are in champagne and on top of a steak salad. On the salad the flavor of the flower went nicely with the meat and the balsamic vinegar-based dressing.
The jar comes with eleven flowers that open beautifully when added to liquid. This product of Australia comes with a recipe guide on the lid of the jar and can be purchased at Granny Muffin Wines at the Texas Art Depot in Palestine.
Place cut side down on a baking sheet and roast in a 400 degree oven for 45 minutes. Remove from the oven, cool slightly for about 10 minutes and scrape into long strands with a fork. Toss with herbs or other ingredients.
The squash has a mild flavor that is buttery and light. Twirl into a mound and top with grilled shrimp or chicken for a satisfying meal. Now available in the produce section at Wal-Mart.
Tangerine Beef from Soju:
A reader raved that the beef is always cooked to perfection with a crispy crust and a sweet and spicy sauce. Squeeze a bit more tangerine juice over the top and this dish is one you will crave often and order frequently.
Quail Saltimbocca from ZaZa's:
This dish features two quail breasts stuffed with ricotta cheese, prosciutto and spinach and served with creamy polenta and green beans. One reader raved it was her, “hands-down favorite and absolute perfection”.
New Spices from McCormick:
Dinner guests loved chicken thighs rubbed and grilled with McCormick Grill Mates Molasses Bacon. It offers a sweet, smoky blend of molasses, bacon and onion. It is also good rubbed on pork chops before grilling or pork loin before roasting.
Two other McCormick spice blends are from their Perfect Pinch line of products. Salt Free Southwest Sweet 'n Smoky and Salt Free Fiesta Citrus are packed with flavor and not salt. I like using salt free blends because I can control the sodium content and know that I'm getting plenty of spice flavor.
The Southwest Sweet 'n Smoky is a blend of blend of brown sugar, smoked paprika, chipotle chile pepper and tomato. Try it on chicken, fish or pork.
For a more zesty south-of-the-border flavor try the Salt Free Fiesta Citrus which contains brown sugar, garlic, cumin, chile pepper, lime and lemon.