How to Host a Healthy 4th of July BBQ

Barbecue season is in full swing and it can be easy to give in to all of the temptations from heavy toppings and high calorie drinks to chips on the side and ice cream for dessert! So how can you host a healthy 4th of July BBQ?

Simply Grilled Chicken Breast

Simply Grilled Chicken Breast

1. Simple Seasoning

BBQs start out with the best intentions. Its basically just meat, vegetables and high heat. Cookout foods tend to lose their nutritious edge when they are smothered in sauce or oil based marinades. Grilling is a great way to add flavor to your meats without a lot of heavy seasoning or sauces – especially if you have wood chips or charcoal. Rub steaks, poultry, fish or veggies with a little olive oil. Season evenly with salt and pepper and grill to desired doneness. Allow meats to rest before serving.

Organic Beef Craft Burger By Rastelli

Organic Beef Craft Burger By Rastelli

2. Great Ingredients

Game and Organic Meats are a great way to avoid some of the summer BBQ pitfalls. Both game and organic meats are incredibly lean and both offer additional benefits. Game meats have a lot of robust natural flavor without the need for heavy seasoning. Organic meats are free from antibiotics, steroids and added hormones.

 

Choose a Salad Based Side

Choose a Salad Based Side

3. Smart Sides

Since the meat should be the star of your BBQ, side dishes are often an afterthought. Instead of making chips and dip your main food group this summer, look to make fresh salads featuring local ingredients. Using fresh, seasonal ingredients means you get more flavor without additives. Our faves are corn salsa, watermelon with feta and golden beets with goat cheese.

Rastelli Foods Receives Plant of the Year Nomination

National Provisioner Editor in Chief, Andy Hanacek visits the Rastelli Foods Plant

National Provisioner Editor in Chief, Andy Hanacek visits the Rastelli Foods Plant

Rastelli Foods Group spent last week cleaning up after severe thunderstorms and reported tornadoes ripped through the Southern New Jersey area. With power outages and a limited staff, the Rastelli team managed to keep on schedule and maintain the integrity of their products, most of which are cut, processed and housed in the newly expanded plant. With power returning on Thursday afternoon, Rastelli employees worked over time to make sure that customers had everything they needed for the days ahead.

The silver lining to a particularly tough week came Friday when The National Provisioner announced Rastelli Foods as a 2015 Nominee for Plant of the Year. Rastelli joins nine other nominees for the first annual poll and hopes to garner votes from clients, vendor partners, family and friends. “We started as a word-of-mouth, family company and we still value the support of our customers and friends to this day. It is pretty stiff competition and we aren’t the biggest company on the list, but we operate on a large scale,” said Ray Rastelli, president of Rastelli Foods Group.

Ray Rastelli hopes that the company’s dedication to food safety and product innovation will win the honor. Rastelli Foods is a technology driven FDA, USDA, HACCP and FoodChek certified facility that includes ozonated water systems, compartmentalized protein chambers, advanced foodborne illness testing and constant QA supervision. The plant also houses sales, marketing and R&D teams made up of chefs, culinarians and foodies.

“We strive to match technological advances with innovation in the Test Kitchen. We have a rounded approach to our plant and our products that equates food safety with quality and taste,” added Carl Zerr, Director of International Food Safety ; Quality Assurance and Regulatory Affairs for Rastelli Foods Group.

Most likely it is that approach that led to the company’s nomination. Voting for 2015 Plant of the Year is open until July 31, 2015.