January 10, 2012
General wisdom dictates that the only sure way to not break a New Year’s resolution is to never have made it at all. One recent study showed that fewer than one quarter of all resolvers were successful in reaching their goal. We did some digging and found two big reasons resolvers are less than successful. First, they focus on the negative impact of their bad habit, rather than the benefits of making the positive change. Second, they attack their resolutions without a specific strategy, and no clear way to measure their progress!
So, as part of our new “Sizzle Into Shape” promotion, which will launch Monday, 1/16/12, we would offer some advice on successfully achieving your health resolutions in 2012!
Be specific about what you want to achieve. Decide on a specific number of pounds you want to lose, give yourself a date to stop smoking by, or determine a number of workouts each week, for example. Write this down so you won’t subconsciously adjust it.
Give it a time frame. Set a realistic expectation for reaching your goal and write it on the calendar…in ink. And add it to your smart phone and set some reminders.
Create some intermediate steps to your goal. Decide how fast you will lose the first five pounds, when you will go from one workout to two, or how many cigarettes you will cut out each day. Write them down and add them to your calendar.
Write out a strategy that will help you achieve it. Make it as specific as possible. You may not follow it, but the mental exercise of finding a way will help you get started.
Find someone to be accountable to and get started! Choose someone that is close enough to ask you on a regular basis about how your resolution is going. If possible, help them too by holding them accountable for their own.
Last, but not least, Chef’s Requested is proud to be able to help in your journey to a new you. Our Health Wise Request line of products are tailored to be the right mix of calories, fats, sodium and proteins.
100 Calorie Steak
Filet of Beef Roasts (Original, Mesquite, Teriyaki, Garlic Peppercorn flavors)
Premium Pork Chops
Premium Diced Pork
Premium Pork Loin
These products were developed with you in mind. We know that nobody likes “diet” food and took great pains to develop a line of real food, fit for you. Complete information about portion size, calories and other nutritional data can be found on the label. Look for them in your favorite Chef’s Requested retailer.
P.S. Be ready to share your New Year’s health goals, and your progress as we launch “Sizzle Into Shape” next week! There will be some great fun and prizes for those who do!
December 29, 2011
As in most cultures, our holidays, here in the US typically have a food element at their core, and New Years is no different. When it comes to the New Years menu, it is all about luck. We thought we would share some New Years foods, and celebration ideas with you to help you get your New Year off to the right start.
Many of the traditional New Year’s foods are eaten for “luck”, or good fortune in the New Year. Round foods are especially popular, since the circle is a symbol of continuity. To some it also represents the shape of a coin, signifying monetary gain in the new year. We can’t help but notice that all of our , bacon wrapped filets are round. Pork is considered lucky, and our new line of Health Wise Request products includes delicious cubed pork cutlets. Whatever your choice of entrees be sure to couple them with black eyed peas, and cooked greens (again representing money) for even more good fortune in the coming year!
In researching for this article we have come across several great themed menu ideas. One simple idea is a finger food menu, where each guest brings their favorite finger foods. You might have some Chef’s Requested filets ground by your butcher for Robert Downey’s favorite, Filet Mignon Meatballs. (recipe on our Facebook page) Or have a menu based on a who’s who of 2011. You name menu items for people who were big in the news. (for example, mini wedding cupcakes named for Kim Kardashian)
One popular style for New Year’s dinners is a progressive dinner, where each course is eaten at a different location. Start off with soup and salad (like the delicious steak salad recipe on our site: http://chefsrequested.com/index.php/recipes/for-extra-lean-beef ) then move on to a main course and finally a desert. We have also learned that some prefer to turn the fine art of dining into a sport with a cookoff. Each of the guests is a judge with a prize going to the winning chef. (may we suggest a selection of fine Chef’s Requested products?)
Other New Year’s Traditions
Auld Lang Syne has been sung on New Year’s Eve for over 200 years, and is often called the most sung song that nobody knows the lyrics to! Whether you are standing in Times Square, or watching it televised, the dropping of the New Year’s ball is one tradition that many American’s will take part in. It has been dropped every year since 1907! The Chinese love fireworks and they have become a common part of America’s New Years celebrations as well. Last but not least, you can thank the Babylonians for our most notorious New Year custom, they were the first to break New Year’s Resolutions!
So, have a happy New Year, and don’t forget to keep someone special close by for that lucky kiss on the stroke of midnight!
December 22, 2011
Here at Chef’s Requested we are all about giving you a taste of the good life. We believe that good food, like premium bacon-wrapped steaks, should not just belong to a special few. Neither should New York getaways, which is one reason we are offering our Sizzle in the City Sweep-Steaks! We’ve been talking, and although we don’t think it’s fair that we can’t win, we have come up with some great ideas on how you could spend your $500 gift card in NYC! There is a lot of fun to be had. Remember, these are only suggestions of how your prize money COULD be spent and do not represent a recommendation or endorsement of any kind.
Start your trip with a little sight-seeing. For less than $200 a 72 hour key to the city is yours, via double decker bus tours! Several companies offer great tours that offer an all you care to see smorgasbord of New York sights and attractions. Some options include a ferry ride to the Statue of Liberty, several great museums and a trip to the observation deck at the top of the Empire State Building! Since this is just a suggestion, you will need to check all pricing and accommodations yourself. Choice of tour company and options is up to you.
Broadway could be yours for a night. Great shows like “The Book of Mormon” and “The Adams Family” are currently taking Broadway by storm. For around $150 a pair of tickets can be had for most shows. If you are more adventurous, many professional Off-Broadway companies sell tickets for a lot less! Take in several shows for the same price!
New York City has always been famous for its restaurants. The city is truly a melting pot, with cuisine from the four corners of the globe available 24 hours a day! Premium dining can be yours for $40 to $100 a plate.
Well, that’s what we would do, if we could enter. But we can’t. So, good luck, now, get out there and enter! And if you win, send us an I “heart” NY T-shirt! Remember, even if you don’t win the grand prize there are still pairs of movie tickets each week of the contest. So go buy a package of Chef’s Requested steaks at your favorite store and enter for a chance to win. We promise, win or lose, you won’t regret the steaks!
December 7, 2011
Thanks to America’s beef producers, there are beef choices to satisfy all tastes, schedules and budgets. Don’t let choosing the right cut become confusing. This helpful chart can serve as your guide to find the best cut for your needs, whether it’s a weeknight family dinner or a special celebration. Above all, matching the correct beef cut to the appropriate cooking method is the key to moist, tender and flavorful beef.
Most tender steaks come from the center (rib and loin sections) of the animal and are usually cooked by dry-heat methods. You can find tender steaks at different price points.
Premium steaks, such as strip (top loin), T-Bone, Porterhouse, ribeye, rib and tenderloin, usually have a higher price per pound, but you can also find tender steaks that are a good choice for family meals such as ranch (shoulder center), top sirloin, flat iron (shoulder top blade), chuck eye and round tip.
Less-tender steaks are from the more exercised fore- and hindquarters of the animal and benefit most from moist-heat cooking. These cuts include full-cut round, eye round and bottom round; chuck shoulder, chuck 7-Bone, chuck arm and chuck blade; flank and skirt. Some of these less tender cuts, including top round steak, may be cooked with dry heat after tenderizing in a marinade.
A roast is a cut of beef, thicker than two inches, that is suitable for cooking by dry heat on a rack in a shallow open pan in the oven or in a covered grill (indirect heat).
Premium oven roasts, including rib, ribeye, top loin and tenderloin are typically more costly, but ideal for holiday entertaining and other special occasions. Plan to order the type and size of roast you’d like ahead of time to ensure you get your first choice.
For everyday family meals, casual gatherings, and for the health-conscious, the round and bottom sirloin cuts are leaner and economical. Moderately priced roasts include tri-tip, round tip, rump, bottom round and eye round.
Consider a boneless roast for large parties or buffets as it will streamline carving and serving.
Pot roasts also come from the fore- and hindquarters of the carcass. These muscles are more heavily exercised and contain more connective tissue, making them less tender. Moist-heat cooking takes more time, but the results are worth waiting for. The beef becomes fork-tender and develops a savory depth of flavor unique to slow-cooked beef.
Pot roasts from the chuck have more fat, and thus more flavor, than those from the round, but many beef chuck and round cuts can be used interchangeably in pot roast recipes, requiring only slight adjustments in cooking times. Take advantage of this fact when the cut specified in a recipe is not available, when certain cuts are on special or to accommodate family preferences.
Beef brisket is a boneless cut from the breast section, the underside of the forequarter. Available as a fresh cut, it is best prepared by using braising or stewing techniques. Brisket is also processed into corned beef, a technique that brines the meat. Corned beef is also prepared using moist-heat cookery.
There are several cuts of brisket available, including whole brisket, point half/point cut brisket, flat half/flat cut and middle cut. The point half is sometimes also called thick cut. The flat half, often referred to as first cut is less fatty and is often the most popular for making braised beef brisket. All the cuts have a layer of fat that can be trimmed, but adds to the flavor and tenderness of the final cooked dish.
Your goal when stir-frying beef is to have uniform size pieces to ensure even cooking. You may save time by purchasing packages of pre-cut beef, but it may more economical to slice your own. Almost any tender beef cut, such as sirloin, top sirloin, tri-tip, ribeye, top loin or tenderloin may be trimmed and cut into the appropriate size strips for use in beef stir-fry recipes. Even some less tender cuts, such as flank, top round and round tip steaks, are suitable for stir-frying. Remember this cook’s tip, too: Place meat in freezer for thirty minutes and it will be easier to cut into thin slices.
Beef for Stew
One of the homiest comfort foods, beef stew practically cooks itself as it slowly simmers on the stove. Beef for stew is boneless, pre-cut cubes, typically from the chuck or round. The ideal size for uniform cooking is about a 3/4 to 1-1/2 inch cube.
If you prefer to cut your own cubes, any chuck or round cut -except top round – may be used. Trim the excess fat and cut into the appropriate size for your recipe.
Visit: beefitswhatsfordinner.com for additional cooking tips and recipes!
November 22, 2011
OKLAHOMA CITY – The holiday season is a time for introspection among many. Especially at Thanksgiving, where in many families, it is a tradition to go around the table at Thanksgiving dinner and share one thing that they are especially thankful for this year. But what if you don’t have a fancy bird, a decorated table or even family members nearby to celebrate the day? Where do you go? Who do you turn to? The Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma has been feeding hungry Oklahomans since 1980.
Six-hundred thousand Oklahomans will wake up today and wonder where their next meal will come from. Oklahoma ranks as the fifth hungriest state in the nation, but thanks to donors, volunteers and advocates, the Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma is “Fighting Hunger…Feeding Hope.”
Chef’s Requested Foods has been a proud sponsor and contributor to the Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma since the late 90′s with sponsorship of the annual Chef’s Feast by providing all the beef and pork products for the meals created by the chefs. As part of its commitment to the cause, in 2011 alone, the company has donated in excess of 8,000 pounds or more than 1,100 meals of food to this charitable organization.
“As we see the continued need, the extraordinary vision of the Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma management and the efficient delivery of food to the partner agencies and those in need, we have made the Regional Food Bank our focus for corporate giving, as well as my charity of choice,” said John Williams, president and CEO of Chef’s Requested Foods.
Chef’s Requested Foods is a member of Made in Oklahoma Coalition, a group of more than 30 Oklahoma food and agricultural manufacturers who partner together to support buying local products. Altogether, 13 of the MIO companies have donated more than 38 tractor trailers (36,000 pounds per truck) of food products to the Regional Food Bank.
Established in 1980, the Regional Food Bank is the largest private hunger-relief organization in the state of Oklahoma. In Fiscal Year 2011, the Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma distributed a record-breaking 46.2 million pounds of food and product through a network of more than 825 partner agencies and schools throughout 53 central and western Oklahoma counties. The Regional Food Bank provides enough food to feed more than 90,000 people each week – nearly half of which are children.
The Regional Food Bank’s administrative costs are below 4 percent, which means 96 cents of every dollar donated helps to directly provide food to Oklahomans in need. For more information about how to donate either goods or volunteer hours or for information on how to get help, please contact the Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma at 405.972.1111 or www.regionalfoodbank.org.
About Chef’s Requested
Chef’s Requested is a processor of ready to cook, value added packaged meat products. Bacon Wrapped Steaks and Filet Mignons are our specialty. Look for them at your local grocer. We also produce a wide variety of marinated meats and quick serve products for use in the food service industry. Our Vision is to be the Cook’s best friend!
About Made in Oklahoma Coalition (MIO)
The Made in Oklahoma Coalition promotes brand awareness and consumer loyalty for Oklahoma food and agricultural products through collective marketing for the purpose of increasing sales, maintaining business retention and expanding Oklahoma’s food and agricultural processing sector. MIO represents more than 30 Oklahoma food and agricultural manufacturers that employ over 20,000 Oklahomans statewide. The coalition is supported by both private and public funds. For more information, please visit www.miocoalition.com.
For more information, please contact Claudia Chambers-Beach, Senior Brand Manager at Chef’s Requested Foods at 405-516-1500 x 301 or email at: email@example.com
February 15, 2011
Dear Chef Ken,
Why on earth when I fry ANYTHING in Oil that has been dipped in flour, does the flour fall off and burn in the oil before the food is done? I end up having to pour the oil out and start again with the second batch. This seems to happen more with Olive Oil frying, which is why I prefer Peanut oil. I don’t start until my oil is smoking hot. This is especially a problem with eggplant & zucchini. Should I add cornmeal to my batter? Should I double dip or dip in milk, water or egg? ;(( Thanks for any advice! Shawna
No matter what you do, some of the batter/breading will fall off and burn in the bottom of the fryer, that is why in the restaurant we drain the fryer after each shift and strain the oil carefully before putting it back in the fryer. The oil has four enemies: heat, moisture, light, and food. You can’t eliminate all of them, but you can make it better for the oil if you understand this.
Heat – use only oil that can stand the heat. Olive oil has a smoke point of about 300 degrees, which is not hot enough for frying. So when you use olive oil you destroy it before it gets hot enough to fry. Peanut oil has a very high smoke point, about 400. That makes it a great oil for frying since that is done around 350. The best oils for frying are formulated to stand the heat. My advice, stay away from olive oil.
Moisture – try to make sure that the things you fry don’t have a lot of excess moisture on the surface such as frost from the freezer. You can’t eliminate moisture all together, just try to keep it off the surface of the food.
Light – keep your oils and fats in a dark place that is cool and dry.
Food – it’s the point of frying to put the food in the oil, right? The important thing is to keep as much waste out of the fryer as possible. The rule of thumb for breading or battering foods is “dry – wet – dry”. This means that you need to start by dredging the food item into “dry” (like flour or seasoned flour or a pre-dust), then put it into “wet (like buttermilk, or batter, or even water), then coat it with “dry” (like seasoned flour, or cornmeal, or breadcrumbs). If you want more coating, repeat the wet and dry. This process is called paner in the French tradition.
Hope this helps,
February 11, 2011
At Chef’s Requested Foods our mission is to be “The Cook’s Best Friend.” However, if you are not a cook but would love to make a delicious Chef’s Requested Filet Mignon for your loved one on Valentine’s Day here are some simple instructions that are virtually foolproof
1. Go to the grocery store and purchase these items:
* Package of Chef’s Requested Foods Filet Mignon
* Two baking potatoes and whatever toppings you prefer to have on said potatoes.
* Bagged salad and salad dressing if it is not included with the bagged salad.
* Some vegetable that you can steam in the bag.
* A loaf of French bread
2. When you are getting ready to cook the dinner give yourself approximately 45 minutes to make everything and have it on the table.
3. Take the loaf of French bread and cut it into slices. You can place this on a plate or in a basket and place it on the table.
4. Wash the two baking potatoes well and stab them with a fork a few times. You will then place them in the microwave to cook. Most microwaves have a baked potato button. If your microwave does not have the baked potato button I find that two medium size potatoes cook in about 8 to 10 minutes. You want them to be able to be squeezed slightly without feeling hard. You can over cook them so it is better to start with the lower time and then go in increments after that.
5. Take the Chef’s Requested Filet Mignon out of the package and place them both in a skillet. You will cook them for about 8 to 10 minutes each side on medium heat. You want them to look nice and brown on each side. I like to cover my pan with a lid or piece of foil while I am cooking them.
6. While the Chef’s Requested Filet Mignon is cooking and the baked potatoes are in the microwave take the salad out of the bag and place it in a bowl or on a plate and take it to the table. You may mix in the dressing if you chose one with a dressing or you may put the dressing bottle on the table for your loved one to add their desired amount of dressing.
7. When the baked potatoes are done cooking in the microwave take them out and put them on the plates. If you take a sharp knife and cut the potato lengthwise (but not all the way through) and then take the heel of your hand and hit the potato sharply you can then pinch the ends in towards the middle and the potato will fluff open like in a restaurant. You can also fluff the insides up a little with a fork.
8. Don’t forget to flip the steaks.
9. Place the frozen steamable vegetables in the microwave and cook for the time stated on the package.
10. Once the vegetables are cooked and the steak finished all you need to do is put everything on the plate together and serve the food.
If you are making a filet mignon dinner for a loved one PLEASE remember that cleaning up the kitchen afterwards is part of it. It takes the romance out of you cooking if you stick your loved one with a big mess. However, if you cook like I advised you there should be minimal cleanup.
December 21, 2010
Gather Everyone Around the Table!
From Bacon Wrapped Filet Mignon to Chopped Steaks we have every taste covered.
Chef’s Requested offers a variety of items. Bacon Wrapped Filet Mignon, which is an excellent choice for an elegant evening entree. Flat Iron Grill Steaks, which are tender, juicy steaks are trimmed and portioned to provide only 100 calories per steak. Bacon wrapped Chopped Beef Filets for the value minded consumer. These are only a few of our delicious options.