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Apple, Cheddar & Virginia Ham Flatbread

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Serves 2-4

10″ – 12″ round flatbread

dijon mustard

apple butter

grated aged white cheddar

country ham, thinly sliced, julienne

large apple, cored, very thinly sliced (peel on)

baby arugula

olive oil

sea salt & pepper

Pre-heat oven to 450°F

Mix dijon & apple butter, spread on flatbread

Top with cheddar, country ham & thinly sliced apples

Bake 7-10 mins, until cheese is melted & golden

Toss arugula with olive oil & s&p; mound on top of pizza

Note: can sub prosciutto or pancetta and smoked gouda

 

#clean&safe

September is…when the pools close? when kids are finally back to school everywhere? start of real football season? Yes, yes, yes. 

AND, it’s food safety month! What? Isn’t every month…and every day that?

How clean and safe is your food service establishment right now? Can you find one thing that could be cleaner? If someone claimed they got sick from your food, do you know and could you prove they didn’t?

By the most recent estimates of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, tainted food sickens 48 million Americans a year, sends nearly 128,000 of them to the hospital and leaves more than 3,000 dead. Read more.

Use this whole month to get habits, routines, results  assuring that your business is clean and safe.

National Food Safety Month was created in 1994 to heighten the awareness about the importance of food safety education. Each year a new theme and free training activities and posters are created for the restaurant and foodservice industry to help reinforce proper food safety practices and procedures. Meriwether Godsey has partnered with the NRA since that time to provide the best food safety training! 

Habits That Stop You From Eating Healthy

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Like most people, I struggle to maintain healthy habits, especially as we enter into the busy season of back to school & sports.  Of course, one can always find excuses as to why they aren’t maintaining their healthy habits.  However, there are some habits that always interfere with eating healthy, despite the season. Summer Tomato came up with a great list of Habits That Stop You From Eating Healthy:

Avoiding the Grocery Store:

Not Sleeping Enough

Not Keeping A Stocked Pantry

Buying out of Season Veggies

Ignoring your Dirty Kitchen

Over- Exercising

This article gives some great basic tips and reminds me it is quite simple to adjust my habits to keep my on track when it comes to healthy eating (& exercise). 

See You at the Super Bowl

VES Green

You don’t have to like football to know football season is upon us…covers of magazines, TV, people starting to wear their team apparel. So, instead of groaning (like we all do when holiday decorations start popping up in August…), let’s see how we can put it to use. 

Our teams don’t make touchdowns…they make WOW! Our teams don’t have linemen and running backs, they have utility stewards and cooks. Our district managers don’t stand on the sideline building human pyramids, they see details and offer an ear or a hand when one’s needed. And our fans don’t wear foam chef dudes on their heads, they wear smiles on their faces and say – “oh man, lunch was the BEST”. So, a little different but kind of the same?!? 

Every head coach and team owner wants players destined for the hall of fame at every position…and they draft with that dream in mind…but they also know they can win with players who care about the team, are willing to work hard, and look to improve their skills every day. Get your team to the Super Bowl (or Gold Certified — ok, Bronze will do) by having each person fit that description!

Fig & Goat Cheese Salad / Flatbread

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Serves 8

​¼ c apple cider vinegar

2 t dijon mustard

1 T honey

1 t sea salt

½ t freshly ground black pepper

1 c extra virgin olive oil 

2 qt mixed greens (with arugula),roughly chopped

1 c fresh or dried figs, quartered

¾ c goat cheese

¾ c​ candied pecans 

Dressing

1. Mix vinegar, dijon, honey, s&p; whisk in olive oil

2. Toss greens with ½ of vinaigrette, add more as desired

3. Top with figs, goat cheese & candied pecans

Note: For flatbread: spread with goat cheese, top with figs & chopped arugula, bake. Top with more arugula.

Making That Connection

connection

As we launch into another year of operations, I know many of us have had some time to think about our work styles and how we communicate with one another. I recently ran across this article by a woman who teaches at Duke and who helps people who are moving into executive roles…but that’s not what caught my eye. It was the fact that the article was about improving communication. Bottom line: no matter who we are (big wig executive in a large corporation or not) we can always get a little better at this!

Here are some highlights:

  • Read people: look for nonverbal cues, especially eye contact
  • Watch your “emotional thinking”: filtering out the positive and focusing only on the negative; black or white thinking where you don’t consider gray areas; over-generalizations where one event colors your thinking
  • Honor promises: do what you say you are going to do
  • Be open and value others
  •  …but…pick one thing to work on!

Summer Veggie Flatbread

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Serves 2-4

tomato, sliced or chopped

zucchini, squash &/or eggplant,

thinly sliced

vidalia onion, thinly sliced

s&p

olive oil cooking spray

naan bread

basil pesto

goat or mozzarella cheese

1. Preheat grill or broiler

2. Slice tomato & eggplant, lightly salt & drain on rack (15 mins), pat dry

3. Spray squash, eggplant & onions with cooking spray; season s&p

4. Grill or broil squashes & eggplant (2-4 mins), set aside

5. Spray both sides naan bread with cooking spray. Broil or grill 1-2 mins per side

6. Spread naan with pesto, top with grilled vegetables, tomatoes & cheese

7. Grill or broil 2-4 mins, until cheese melts

Note: sub Udi’s Gluten Free Pizza Crust

All About That WIG

WIGS (680x370) (1)

Let’s play multiple choice: Which of the following is a true statement?

a) We’ve just completed the first Period of our “new year.”

b) We’re preparing for our annual company meeting next week.

c) Every MG account is thinking about their WIGs (Wildly Important Goals) for next year.

d) All of the above. 

Hmm….pretty easy question. Right? 

Do you have 8 minutes? If you watch this 8 minute video, you will get the best reinforcement of why WIGs are so wildly important, and how to work them this next year in a way more effective than ever before. Really. 

And if you have another 3 minutes and 44 seconds…see how a hospital went from the bottom 3% to the top 99% in patient satisfaction…because they worked their WIGs. Check it out and get inspired for WIG work!

The Number One Reason You’re Not Losing Weight

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I recently came across this article on a popular fitness blog. I almost immediately dismissed the article as another piece telling the reader they are eating too may calories, not fasting enough, not burning enough calories, etc, etc. I was pleasantly surprised that this was not the case. It is not a topic that is often discussed when talking about weight loss, but “too much” dietary restriction is often the culprit when weight loss fails.

Metabolism 101 is that the body will go into starvation mode and store what food it does get when it’s not being fed. I see this often when working with college students who believe extreme calorie restriction is the answer to their weight problems. We all know calorie restriction can be a slippery slope, so what is the best approach? As the author states, eating enough calories to keep you satiated, but enough to create a calorie deficient that results in a 1 to 2 pound weight loss per week. It’s not a glamorous recommendation or a magic bullet, but one that is proven to work.

Long-Term Healthy Lifestyle Behaviors

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“Bikini season” is now in full force. I will admit giving into this phenomenon by purchasing a DVD that claims to have your body bikini ready in one week.  Full disclaimer, I do not buy into this marketing ploy, I just happen to be a fan of this fitness person’s exercise regimen   As I sweat through the vigorous workout and listen to her drone on about getting bikini ready, I do wonder how many people actually believe this work out will result in bikini worthy abs.  Realistically, working out for a week will not result in Olympic style abs, but that doesn’t mean you should give up exercise and healthy eating all together.  Establishing long-term healthy lifestyle behaviors will enable you to enjoy food and meet your health & wellness goals.

A few healthy eating tips courtesy of appforhealth:

  • Reduce overall calories to promote fat loss. Excess fat is quickly mobilized from the middle, so you’ll quickly see changes to your mid-section, if you lose just a few pounds.
  • Reduce or eliminate nutrient-poor carbohydrates (read: candy, soda, baked goods). Simple sugars cause rapid rises in blood sugar and have been linked to excess belly fat. To know the 46+ names food manufacturers use for sugars in their product, use this tool. 
  • Keep saturated fat to recommended levels (7-10% of total calories) Again, saturated fat has been shown to be linked to larger waistlines, so eat more poly and monounsaturated fats in place of foods rich in sat fats.
  • Avoid man-made trans fats, which are still in many foods. To tell if a processed food contains trans fats, look for partially-hydrogenated oil in the ingredient list.
  • Eat more whole grains, fruits and vegetables. Diets rich in these foods are consistently associated with smaller waistlines.
  • Enjoy nonfat or lowfat plain Greek yogurt.  Yogurt may help whittle your middle and the beneficial probiotics may help alter your gut bacteria to keep your GI tract healthy.