Monthly Archives: February 2012

Salma Hayek Teams Up with The Breakfast Project To Upgrade America’s AM Routine

Salma Hayek and Ellie Krieger Help Kick Off New Campaign to Show How Every Good Day Starts With Milk

The Breakfast Project Aims to Make Over America’s Mornings, Help Upgrade the A.M. Routine in This Country.

Breakfast is famously known as the most important meal of the day, yet it’s a meal that’s likely to be skipped.  One in five Americans, or about 60 million people, do not eat or drink anything in the morning, according to a new analysis by The NPD Group; and millions more opt for nutrient-poor choices on the run. The Breakfast Project is attempting to tackle this problem and change the way Americans view their morning meal.

Award-winning actress Salma Hayek and celebrity TV chef Ellie Krieger are teaming up with the National Milk Mustache “got milk?®” Campaign to launch The Breakfast Project to help more Americans enjoy breakfast at home and be sure to set the table with milk. The goal is to makeover America’s mornings so families can have a more nourishing and delicious start – which can have a powerful impact on the rest of their day, and even their lives.

“My days are always super busy, always very hectic, and I have to juggle so many things at the same time, but I wouldn’t dream of skipping breakfast,” said Hayek, who unveiled her new milk mustache print ads and TV commercials today to kick off The Breakfast Project.  “I recognize how valuable it is to begin the day with a healthy breakfast that includes milk.  It’s a special time that I can share with my family, and I feel good that my daughter is getting the best start possible to her day.”

Hayek will be the face of the multifaceted and bilingual campaign, where she will appear in two TV spots, directed by award-winning Hollywood cinematographer Wally Pfister, that will begin airing nationally on February 27.

  • One commercial titled “Come Drink Your Milk,” reflects the tradition of passing on the healthy habits of drinking milk every morning to your children.
  • For the commercial “Midnight Run,” Hayek takes a comic turn demonstrating the extreme lengths she would go to make sure her family has milk in the morning.

In addition, Hayek will appear in three print advertisements that will run beyond 2012. This is the first time that the campaign will use one celebrity to do TV commercials in English and Spanish.

Hayek is helping launch The Breakfast Project today to celebrate breakfast at home. Visitors to TheBreakfastProject.com will join a growing community of Americans gaining (and sharing) insights and inspiration to help makeover their mornings. Along with a behind-the-scenes look at the making of Hayek’s new ads and her personal tips on tackling the morning chaos, The Breakfast Project will share unique breakfast recipes, insights from other real moms and a Breakfast Learning Lab that delves into the country’s a.m. habits and the research that supports the benefits of breakfast.

“I make sure that my family has a nutritious breakfast every day,” Hayek said.  “We often keep it simple with cereal and milk at breakfast, or sometimes we have some fun and make smoothies with milk and fruit.  As long as my daughter has that glass of milk, I know that she’s getting calcium, protein and other nutrients to help her be strong, focused and ready for the day.  Plus, I make sure she sees me make healthy choices in the morning, too.  I’m trying to be a positive breakfast role model.”

CLICK HERE

DOWNFALLS OF BREAKFAST SKIPPING 
“Breakfast sets the tone for your day, so if you don’t start off right with a healthy, filling breakfast, then you may be more likely to make poorer choices the rest of the day,” said Krieger, who is registered dietitian, mom and former milk mustache celebrity. “Skipping breakfast also makes it tough for you to get all the nutrients you need, which is a problem for adults, but it’s especially worrisome for kids.  Their growing bodies and developing brains need a healthy breakfast every day.”

The frequency of breakfast skipping has increased over time, particularly among children and teens who tend to skip breakfast more than any other meal.   The highest incidence (14 percent) of skipping is among 13- to 17-year-olds, according to NPD data.  If breakfast is skipped, or the morning meal does not include milk, then it’s difficult to make up for this nutrient deficit during the rest of the day.

Skipping breakfast, or missing out on milk with your morning meal, makes it nearly impossible to achieve adequate intakes of key nutrients, studies have repeatedly shown.  In one of the largest ongoing investigations of children’s eating habits2, researchers found that 10-year-old children who did not eat breakfast failed to meet two-thirds of the recommendations for multiple nutrients, including calcium, vitamin D, vitamin A, magnesium, iron and phosphorus. Children, adolescents and adults who regularly eat breakfast consistently have higher intakes of calcium, vitamin A, potassium, riboflavin, vitamin B-12 and phosphorus – all nutrients found in milk. If milk is missed in the morning, it is rare for people to compensate for this shortage at other meals.

“Even though mornings can sometimes be chaotic, this is a special time of day and moms can feel good that they’re bonding with their family and helping their kids get off to a right start by eating a healthy breakfast that includes milk,” said Krieger.

Moms say they serve their family milk at breakfast because it’s healthy and encourages good eating habits, according to research conducted by Monitor.3  They also feel like they’re being a good parent by encouraging milk at breakfast, and their main motivation to eat more breakfasts at home is to spend time with their family.

Not only does breakfast at home give families a chance to bond, it’s also cost effective and helps recharge your brain and your body so you’ll be more efficient and successful in just about everything you do.  For kids, studies show that breakfast helps them concentrate in the classroom, and it’s even been linked to better school attendance, fewer tardies and decreased discipline problems.4   Adults need breakfast to have sufficient energy to tackle the day’s to-do list, and to focus on demands at the office or at home.

Additionally, studies show that eating breakfast is an important strategy for achieving and maintaining a healthy weight.  People who skip breakfast actually end up eating more calories throughout the day and tend to weigh more than breakfast eaters do.  A new analysis of published research by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Nutrition Evidence Library5 concludes that children and teens who do not eat breakfast are at increased risk of overweight and obesity.

MILK MAKES THE MEAL
“Lowfat or fat free milk will help make any breakfast you choose more nutritious,” Krieger said.  “It’s certainly the most naturally nutritious drink you could pour in your glass in the morning, but it also pairs up well with a whole-grain cereal for a quick and easy breakfast.  And what’s so great about this combination is that is provides calcium, vitamin D, potassium and fiber – the four nutrients most likely to be lacking in the American diet.”

An additional bonus is that milk is a good source of protein (even more than an egg), which helps to keep you full and satisfied so you’ll stay on track with your healthy eating plan.  Studies show that adding some protein to your morning meal can help control hunger and limit overeating later.6

Beyond cereal and milk, Krieger also recommends making a fast smoothie in the blender with milk and fruit, or heating up some milk in the microwave for a homemade latte. “Adding milk to your morning meal is affordable, delicious and nutritious,” Krieger said.  “And if you start your day without it, you’re creating such a nutrient void that you may never fill it with your other meals.”

JOIN THE BREAKFAST PROJECT
Visitors to TheBreakfastProject.com (or in Spanish ProyectoDesayuno.com) start at the project’s Facebook page, where they can join a growing community, share their breakfast stories, find out how to get a free gallon of milk to help make sure more Americans have milk at their breakfast tables, or continue through to The Breakfast Project digital hub.

This content hub includes a Breakfast Learning Lab that provides a deeper dive into how (and why) to get into a healthy breakfast at home routine – even amidst the typical morning chaos.  It also provides a real-time look at America’s mornings, showcasing an ongoing snapshot of our country’s collective a.m. routines. Visitors can also explore recipes and tips from celebrities and top registered dietitians like Ellie Krieger, behind-the-scenes video of Salma Hayek’s ad shoots, and videos from other moms revealing their morning routines.

About the National Milk Mustache “got milk?”® Campaign
The Milk Processor Education Program (MilkPEP), Washington, D.C., is funded by the nation’s milk processors, who are committed to increasing fluid milk consumption. The MilkPEP Board runs the National Milk Mustache “got milk?”® Campaign, a multi-faceted campaign designed to educate consumers about the health benefits of milk. For more information, go to www.TheBreakfastProject.com or Facebook.com/MilkMustache. Deutsch, A Lowe and Partners Company, is the creative agency for the National Milk Mustache “got milk?®” Campaign.

Will America Get Over its Nudity Hang-up?

As recently as January, the U.S. Supreme Court was debating whether TV networks should be fined for showing a bare body part – in this case, a woman’s butt — on an episode of ABC’s “NYPD Blue.”

A lawyer arguing for the networks noted enforcement could lead to complaints about the Summer Olympics in Beijing: During the opening ceremonies a statute of a bare-breasted, bare-bottomed woman was plainly visible.

A decision isn’t expected until June, but no matter the result, the very fact this is a matter before the highest court in the land troubles historian Mike Foster.

America remains surprisingly prudish, or at least hypocritical, about nudity, says Foster, co-author with his wife, Barbara, of the biography, A Dangerous Woman: The Life, Loves, and Scandals of Adah Isaccs Menken (www.TheGreatBare.com).

“Officially, we’re uptight about nudity,” he says, “but happy to watch it in the media. Advertisers use nudity to make a buck, publishers to sell product, and protesters take it off to make a point.

“Lindsay Lohan’s nude spread for Playboy earned her a million dollars and was pirated on the Internet. Helen Mirren, at 64, posed topless for a puff promoting ‘Love Ranch.’ PETA women, who strip in public for attention to animal rights — ‘go naked instead of wearing fur’ — have been joined by their men.

The “ultimate fantasy commercial” for this year’s Super Bowl featured a beautiful Colombian model looking stark naked. It was done with paint and 100 million viewers feasted their eyes on a nude illusion.

Foster says our nude hypocrisy stems from the Victorian era, when actress Adah Menken was dubbed “The Great Bare” by writer/admirer Mark Twain. The Civil War-era bombshell singer and actress became famous as The Naked Lady for her starring role in “Mazeppa,” a drama in which she rode a stallion up a four-story stage mountain, apparently in the buff. She actually wore a flesh-colored body stocking, but the audience gasped — yet another nude illusion. 

It’s mystifying that in Western Europe, the birthplace of many American traditions and values, billboards, TV shows and commercials featuring nudity are commonplace. Nude sunbathers enjoy their nations’ beaches — and don’t go home with awkward tan lines.

One hopeful sign that America’s easing up: At actress Betty White’s televised 90th birthday tribute, Tina Fey claimed the older actress told her: “Never let anyone tell you that you are not good enough to pose nude.”

Yes, our favorite “Golden Girl” did it, decades ago. Yet another “dangerous woman” ahead of her time?

About Michael & Barbara Foster

Michael Foster is a historian, novelist and biographer, acclaimed by the New York Times. He earned his Master of Fine Arts from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop. “A Dangerous Woman” is his fifth book. Barbara Foster is an associate professor of women’s studies at City University of New York.

Last Minute Oscar Night Recipes

Looking for a fun way to get in the Oscar spirit this Sunday?  David Venable, host of QVC’s popular cooking and dining show, In The Kitchen With David, offers themed recipes that are sure to win a nod of approval from your guests.  Channel your inner southern pride with The Help inspired Down Home Southern Fried Chicken or experience Midnight in Paris with a savory French Onion Soup Meat Loaf with Mashed Potato Topping.  Not so hungry?  Test out David’s delicious Loaded Frozen Piña Colada in honor of The Descendents.  No matter who you’re rooting for, David Venable’s recipes will make sure your Oscar celebration is a hit!

Down Home Southern Fried Chicken

With the exception of the hollandaise sauce, the entire dish can be prepared a day ahead.  As long as you add the butter very, very slowly, the ingredients won’t separate, nor will the eggs scramble.  Instead, the sauce will be smooth and creamy. 

French Onion Soup Meat Loaf with Mashed Potato Topping

This is the perfect comfort food recipe that will give your guests that “at home” feeling.  The French onion soup really gives it a little something extra while remaining a classic.  

Baked Brie with Raspberry Jam, Almonds, and Cranberries

You don’t need to walk the red carpet to dine like a star.  Filled with raspberry jam, almonds, and cranberries, this elegant, yet easy to prepare appetizer will make you famous at your Oscar party.  Any greased or parchment paper lined baking sheet can be used.  To make this appetizer look even more impressive, use the leftover scraps of puff pastry to decorate the brie and cutt out shapes like leaves, flowers, or letters, brush them with the egg wash, and delicately place them on top before baking.   

Loaded Frozen Piña Colada

You don’t need to be on a tropical island to enjoy a fruity drink.  Cut different types of fruit up and add to your drink for instant colorful fun that your guests will enjoy.

BAKED BRIE WITH RASPBERRY JAM, ALMONDS AND CRANBERRIES

Ingredients:

1 (10-inch x 10-inch) piece frozen puff pastry, defrosted

1 (8-oz) wheel Brie cheese, rind in-tact

2 Tbsp seedless raspberry jam

1/4 cup sliced almonds, toasted

1/4 cup dried cranberries, softened in hot water, drained, and patted dry

1 egg yolk

1 tsp water

Crackers (optional, for serving)

Sliced baguette (optional, for serving)

Sliced apples (optional, for serving)

Grapes (optional, for serving)

 Directions:

Preheat the oven to 375°F. Combine the egg yolk and water in a small bowl, then set aside.

Slice the Brie in half (like a bagel) so you have two circles. Place the puff pastry on a greased- or parchment-paper-lined cookie sheet. Spoon out 1 Tbsp of the raspberry jam and drop it in the middle of the puff pastry. Spread the jam into a circle approximately the size of the Brie.

Place one half of the Brie, rind-side-down, on the jam. Spread 1 Tbsp of jam over the Brie then sprinkle the almonds and cranberries on top. Place the second half of the Brie, rind-side-up on top, and spread with the remaining raspberry jam. Brush the edges of the puff pastry with the egg wash then fold up the edges to cover the cheese. Trim any excess pastry and press to seal.

Flip the covered Brie over and brush the other side with the remaining egg wash. Bake for 25 minutes, or until golden brown. Remove from the oven and let stand for 15 to 20 minutes before serving. Serve with crackers, baguette, apples, or grapes.


CHICKEN OSCAR

 Ingredients:

 For the Dish:

4 (5-oz or 6-oz) boneless, skinless chicken breasts

1/3 cup flour

2 tsp kosher salt

1/4 tsp ground black pepper

1/2 cup vegetable oil

5 oz jumbo lump crabmeat

16 spears of asparagus, trimmed and cut into bite-sized pieces

1 red onion, diced

2 plum tomatoes, seeded and diced

Salt and pepper, to taste

 

Hollandaise Sauce:

3 egg yolks

2 Tbsp lemon juice

1/4 tsp kosher salt

1 tsp Dijon mustard

Pinch of cayenne pepper

1/2 cup butter

Directions:

To prepare the asparagus, bring 3 cups of water to a boil in a medium saucepan. Add the asparagus and boil until tender, about 3 minutes. Drain and set aside.

To prepare the chicken, first mix the flour, salt, and pepper on a medium-sized plate and set aside. Lay the breasts in-between two sheets of plastic wrap and pound the chicken to 1/2-inch thickness. Dredge the chicken in the flour mixture and coat completely; pat off any excess. Heat the oil in a medium, nonstick frying pan over medium-high heat. Sauté the chicken breasts on both sides until browned and firm, about 3 minutes per side.

Remove the chicken (and keep warm until ready to serve), then add the onion to skillet and sauté until softened, about 4 minutes. Increase the heat to high and add the tomatoes. Sauté until most of the moisture has evaporated, then season with salt and pepper. Decrease the heat to low and add the crab meat; toss gently, just until hot.

To prepare the hollandaise, put the egg yolks, lemon juice, salt, mustard, and cayenne in a blender; set aside. Heat the butter in a small pan until bubbly; be careful not to burn. Cover the blender, pulse well to combine, and continue pulsing while very slowly pouring the melted butter into the blender. Stop pulsing when the mixture has thickened.

To serve, set one chicken breast on each plate and arrange four asparagus spears on top. Spoon the crab mixture over the asparagus and drizzle with hollandaise.

Down Home Southern Fried Chicken (The Help)

Ingredients:

1-3/4 lbs. chicken, cut up into 6 parts

Flour Mixture:

6 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp. dried thyme
1 tsp. marjoram
2 tsp. onion powder
2 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper
2 Tbsp. salt
1 Tbsp. black pepper

Buttermilk Brine:

1-qt. buttermilk
2 Tbsp. hot sauce
1 Tbsp. salt
1 Tbsp. pepper

Directions:

Add the ingredients for the buttermilk brine to the 21-cup Lock & Lock container and mix. Incorporate the chicken pieces into the brine and refrigerate for at least 3 hours, or overnight.

Just before using, pour the chicken into a colander and allow the excess buttermilk to drain.

Fill a very large pot 4 — 6 inches deep with oil and preheat to 350°F.

Combine the dry ingredients for the flour mixture in the 14.38-cup Lock & Lock container. One-by-one, add the chicken pieces and thoroughly coat with flour on all sides. Shake the excess flour off each piece of chicken and drop the chicken into the hot oil, piece-by-piece.

Note: the oil-temperature will drop as you add the chicken. Thus, turn the burner to high to maintain a temperature of 350°F as the chicken cooks. Make sure each piece cooks for 12 — 18 minutes until golden brown and a meat thermometer reads at least 160°F at the bone.

Remove the chicken and place on a rack to drain and season immediately with salt. Allow to cool for a few minutes, then serve.

 

French Onion Soup Meat Loaf with Mashed Potato Topping (Midnight in Paris)

Ingredients:

2 lbs. ground beef
2 eggs
1/2 – 3/4 cup chopped onions
2 slices of bread, crumbled
1 clove garlic, chopped
2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
1/2 package dry onion soup mix
Salt and pepper to taste

Topping Ingredients:

2-1/2 cups hot mashed potatoes
1 cup grated Gruyere cheese

Directions:

Mix all the ingredients except the potatoes and cheese. Shape into a loaf. Bake for 1-1/2 hours at 350ºF. During the last 20 minutes, spread potatoes over the meat loaf and top with grated Gruyere cheese.

Loaded Frozen Piña Colada (The Descendents)

Ingredients:

1 cup coconut milk
1 cup pineapple juice
1/4 cup heavy cream
Splash of maraschino cherry syrup
1/2 cup rum
1/4 cup coconut rum
1/4 cup white sugar
7 cups of ice
Orange slices, to garnish
Pineapple wedges, to garnish
Maraschino cherries with stems, to garnish

Directions:

In a blender or frozen drink maker, add the coconut milk, pineapple juice, heavy cream, maraschino cherry syrup, both rums, sugar, and ice. Blend well until drink becomes smooth yet slushy in consistency. Pour mixture into goblet or daiquiri glasses. Garnish the rims of each glass with an orange slice and wedge of pineapple. Place a maraschino cherry on top of the finished piña colada, and serve.

LA Gets a Broadway-style Tribute to Benefit Animal Rescue Efforts

“Doin’ It For Love” to Play Los Angeles
Hollywood and Broadway award-winners Kaye Ballard (“Carnival,” “Pirates of Penzance,” “Gypsy,” “Nunsense,” Stephen Sondheim’s “Follies,” “Freaky Friday,” “The Doris Day Show,” “The Muppet Show”), Liliane Montevecchi (Tony Award recipient for Liliane La Fleur in “Nine,” also starring in “King Creole” with Elvis Presley, “Wall Street,” and “How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days”), and Lee Roy Reams (“42nd Street,” “Show Boat,” “Hello, Dolly!,” “Oklahoma!,” “Beauty and the Beast,” “The Producers,” and “Sweet Charity”) are to star in “Doin’ It For Love,” a Broadway-style tribute to the standards and the stories behind the music.

Celebrating the finale of its Southwest Tour in Los Angeles on March 9 and 10, “Doin’ It For Love” features a 10-piece orchestra conducted onstage by David Geist, the show’s music director.  Hilary Knight, the internationally renowned artist and illustrator, designed the commemorative poster art and collectables for the show.  The profits from “Doin’ It For Love” will go to People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) Investigation and Rescue Fund.

“PETA is thrilled to benefit from this incredible show that will offer Los Angeles-area audiences a chance to experience the timeless acts and performances from some of the most beloved entertainers in show business, all while benefitting a great cause,” said Ingrid Newkirk, president and co-founder of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals.  “The Investigation and Rescue Fund is one of the most important parts of our work to stop animal suffering and abuse.  Our brave undercover investigators are able to expose – and ultimately stop – the cruelty that animal abusers try so desperately to hide. The Investigation and Rescue Fund also makes it possible to provide immediate veterinary treatment, transport, and humane shelter to animals in emergencies.”

“Doin’ It For Love” completes its Southwest Tour at the historic Wilshire Ebell Theatre, located at 4401 W. 8th Street in Los Angeles, on Friday, March 9 and Saturday, March 10.  Doors open at 6:30 p.m. and shows begin at 7:30 p.m.  Tickets range in price between $35 and $500, plus applicable service fees, and can be purchased through Ticketmaster by telephone at (800) 745-3000, or online at http://www.ticketmaster.com.



The Days of Wine and Roses: A Sentimental Pause

After posting yesterday’s blog I suddenly got the urge to look up one of my favorite old movies starring Jack Lemon and Lee Remmick.  It’s not hard to appreciate the poetry on the page and on screen.  Painful and beautiful, these are the brief and fleeting moments that give ‘pause’ power over sentiment, bear truth rather than indulge in fantasy and leave us with exquisite lasting beauty.

“Gather ye rosebuds while ye may…”

Days of Wine and Lip Gloss

 There’s a moment when you feel simply drunk with beauty and literally there is now a new product that uniquely combines aspects of health & beauty (food & wine all in one) without the hangover.

I thought they were kidding.  But no.  

DeVine Lip Shimmers has figured out a way to have you licking your lips and loving it all day long by including all of the benefits of wine — grapeseed oil, resveratrol and red wine antioxidants to produce a moisturizing lip shimmer that not only has anti-aging property but manages to live up to the additional just what the dermatologist ordered label of gluten free, 100% natural ingrediants, cruelty free and containing no pesticides, parabens, or other unkind chemicals.  Plus it is made in the USA.

Oh yeah, and they taste like wine and named appropriately in shades of  Rosé (a soft pink), Bordeaux (a rich plum), and Merlot (a deep red).

So Gloss up and Kiss up to The Days of Wine and Roses and Luscious Lips and YOU!

Check it out: www.devineshimmers.com

I couldn’t help but add this sentiment for a truly delicious ending…

 

Great Ballet Performances: Anthony Dowell — Swan Lake

There are certain ballet performances that are so unmistakably beautiful that they beg to be experienced.  Accidentally stumbling upon this youtube video I couldn’t help but celebrate the truly classical line without (oh so thankfully) the circus tricks that are ever more required in the modern dance age —  just gorgeous lines, breath and passionate acting.   Truly a study (in arabesque) in how effortless technique is translated onto the opera house stage.  — I sigh…