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Great Grapes

06/01/2015 03:33AM ● Published by Family Features

(Family Features) Widely recognized as portable and tasty, grapes are an easy way to enjoy an extra serving of fruit. But not only are grapes a super snack, they’re a terrific fresh ingredient to enhance any meal.

Yes, with a burst of juicy flavor, fresh grapes can make good-for-you foods taste even better. Vibrant color, crunch and a light touch of sweetness make them an unexpected but appealing addition to countless dishes.

These recipes show how grapes balance the distinct flavor of Brussels sprouts; complement smoky mozzarella; provide a palate-pleasing texture to tofu kabobs and complement the global flavors of a Thai salad.

In addition to great taste and versatility, grapes are also healthy. They are a natural source of antioxidants and other polyphenols, which contribute to a healthy heart.

Sweet Summery Snack
Frozen grapes are the perfect cool down when the weather gets hot. Just rinse, pat dry and place in the freezer for about 2 hours.

A Handful of Health

  • One serving of grapes is 3/4 cup and has just 90 calories, no fat, no cholesterol and virtually no sodium.
  • Grapes are a natural source of antioxidants and other polyphenols, which help make grapes a heart-healthy food.
  • They are an excellent source of vitamin K, which is critical for healthy blood clotting, and may play a role in bone health.
  • Grapes contribute to heart health by promoting the relaxation of blood vessels to help maintain healthy blood flow and function.

For more recipes featuring delicious and nutritious grapes, visit www.grapesfromcalifornia.com.

Tofu Grape Kabobs

Ingredients

  • 2–3 tablespoons minced jalapeno
  • 2 tablespoons reduced-sodium soy sauce
  • 2 teaspoons brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon grated ginger
  • 1 pound firm tofu, cut into 12 chunks
  • 2 cups green California grapes
  • 2 cups steamed brown rice
  • 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro

Preparation

  1. Heat grill to high.
  2. In small bowl, mix jalapeno, soy sauce, sugar and ginger, and toss. Add tofu and mix.
  3. Thread tofu and grapes onto 4 skewers. Grill 2–4 minutes or until heated through.
  4. Divide rice among 4 bowls, top with skewers and sprinkle with cilantro.

Grape and Smoked Mozzarella Flatbread

Ingredients

  • 2 large wholegrain flatbreads or naan (about 8 ounces)
  • 1 1/4 cups grated smoked mozzarella
  • 3 cups arugula
  • 1 cup sliced red, green and black California grapes
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 small clove garlic, minced
  • Salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper

Preparation

  1. Heat broiler to high.
  2. Place flatbreads on baking sheet and broil until crisp and lightly browned, about 2 minutes. Turn and cover with mozzarella. Broil until melted, about 2–3 minutes.
  3. While mozzarella is melting, toss together arugula, grapes, olive oil, garlic, salt and pepper. Place on top of flatbreads and cut into wedges.

Sweet and Savory Garlic Ginger Brussels Sprouts and Grapes

Ingredients

  • 1 pound Brussels sprouts
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup halved red California grapes
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons fresh ginger, grated
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 2 teaspoons honey
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 1/4 cup walnuts, coarsely chopped

Preparation

  1. Cut off woody stem on each Brussels sprout and remove any tough or bruised outer leaves. Slice sprouts very thinly to make mound of feathery ribbons.
  2. Heat olive oil in large skillet over medium-high heat. Add sprouts, grapes, salt and pepper to skillet and saute 3–4 minutes. Reduce heat to medium and add garlic, ginger, mustard, honey and vinegar to pan. Continue to saute approximately 1–2 minutes, until sprouts are tender and bright green in color.
  3. Turn off heat and add walnuts to pan. Gently mix to combine.

Shrimp Thai Salad

Ingredients

  • 3 cups shredded savoy cabbage
  • 2 cups bean sprouts, rinsed
  • 1 1/2 cups green California grapes, halved
  • 1 large cucumber
  • 1/4 cup lime juice
  • 3 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 3 tablespoons minced shallots
  • 1 tablespoon safflower oil
  • 1 red Thai chili, thinly sliced
  • 1 1/2 cups cooked medium shrimp
  • 3 tablespoons coarsely chopped cilantro
  • 3 tablespoons Thai basil, torn

Preparation

  1. Combine cabbage, bean sprouts and grapes in large bowl. With vegetable peeler, peel cucumber into long thin strips and put on top.
  2. In small bowl, combine lime juice, vinegar, sugar, shallots, oil and chili. Pour over vegetables and mix well.
  3. Divide among 4 serving plates, top with shrimp and sprinkle with cilantro and basil.

Sponsored by California Table Grape Commission

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