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Cook’s Tip: Using Jarred Tomato Sauce


Confused when buying jarred tomato sauce? It starts in the store, put on your glasses and read the tiny words on the ingredient label.

Pick the one with the least ingredients, avoid the ones with sugar and corn syrup. Look for more tomato, less tomato paste. Stay away from the freckled dried herbs too. Just get plain and simple tomato sauce. Then stroll by the produce section and pick up some fresh garlic and basil.

Go home and get your sauce pan really hot and drizzle in a bit of olive oil, throw in the garlic and 20 seconds later, the moment the garlic is golden, add the tomato sauce. If you happen to have the rind of a Parmesan cheese, throw it in. If you have a chopped anchovy add it too, if you don’t, a splash of Asian fish sauce is a sneaky cook’s trick that adds “bass” to your sauce.

Let the sauce simmer while you boil your pasta water. If you care to, add a sprinkle of chopped capers and some red pepper flakes. Remove the Parmesan rind. Tear up your basil and fold it in. Taste your sauce…. it is yours now, give it a family name.

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Sign the Sugar Petition


Sugar is making America sick, and by 2050, one in three Americans will have diabetes.

This week, Congressman Tim Ryan called on the US Food and Drug Administration to enact a clearer way to label the sugar content in foods by changing the measurement to teaspoons instead of grams to make it easier for consumers to understand the true amount of sugar in a product.

Please sign the petition to change sugar measurements on food labels. 

Sign the Sugar Petition.

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Oven Grains, Greens and Cheese, Please


This is a great warm, comforting one-dish crowdpleaser. Cook it on a Saturday when you have family visiting, or a Tuesday just to make yourself happy. Make this into your very own family recipe! Use your favorite grain, or try a new one. The recipe suggests some greens and cheeses, but please do experiment with any you have on hand and love…

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Walnut Cinnamon Quinoa


Kids love delicate, heart-healthy grain quinoa, especially when it takes on the familiar flavors of honey and cinnamon. Soaking the quinoa in warm water with yogurt makes it irresistibly fluffy, but if you don’t have time, simply cook the quinoa according to package directions and top each serving with the walnuts, cinnamon and honey. This recipe comes to us from Kristi Arnold, The Veggie Converter.

Visit The Kids Cook Monday for the full recipe for Walnut Cinnamon Quinoa.

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