Thursday, June 30, 2016
June is a busy month, full of fun and memories! It marks graduation, the start of summer, weddings, vacation season. But did you know that June is also National Dairy Month? While we fire up our grills in preparation for the summer cooking season, June is the perfect time to incorporate a food group that tastes great and is great for us: dairy.
Many of us (my family included) eat butter and cheese as part of our weekly meal rotation. But we often forget to consider that many butters contain additives (such as growth hormones, preservatives, and dyes) that can be harmful to our bodies. What if I told you there was a way to sidestep those potentially dangerous chemicals, embrace all-natural great taste, and take your baking and cooking game to the next level in honor of National Dairy Month?
I recently discovered Finlandia Cheese [https://www.finlandiacheese.com/]—a brand that has been crafting some of the highest quality cheese and butter for over a century. We had a great experience putting Finlandia ingredients to the test this week! Here's how my samples arrived, all sealed up in a cool pack so they stayed nice and fresh!
We were going to make a yummy dessert, like pound cake or banana bread, but the end of a long week found us hungry for something more savory and substantial. The boys voted for grilled ham, turkey and cheese sandwiches! Finlandia Swiss Cheese (#finlandiacheese) slices are the perfect choice for this quick and easy snack/meal!
Construction was pretty basic, we added just a little bit of horseradish and mustard spread to the bread to give the sandwiches a little kick. Findlandia Salted Butter (#finlandiabutter) spread on the outside of the bread added a nice buttery taste and helped the bread toast up rather nicely!
The end result? I think you can tell my boys were super happy and full!
The easy meal prep and gooey, stringy deliciousness of the grilled cheese sammies inspired me to try some new recipes (I'll post pics later) and share a few secrets to help you create some of the best-tasting food you and your family have ever eaten!
SECRET #1: USE ONLY HIGH-QUALITY INGREDIENTS
Great dishes are a sum of their parts. I used to go for the cheapest brand of everything. I am learning that in order to create really great dishes, all parts should be delicious alone AND in your culinary creation. When I tried Finlandia for the first time, I was really surprised! Not only are their cheeses and butter all-natural and hormone-free, but they taste incredible. Seriously. You can taste the difference. Imported from Finland using milk produced by well-cared-for cows, Finlandia Butter is rich and creamy. It tastes so much better than any butter I've ever tasted. And you could eat Finlandia Cheese straight from the package—no crackers needed.
SECRET #2: CARE ABOUT THE SOURCE OF YOUR FOOD
Life moves fast, and most of us don't have time to research every single product we consume. Which is hard for me, because I like to research things. Even when it's not necessary. I have this thing about fact finding. However, when it comes to products like cheese and butter, which we eat almost everyday, it's important to be aware of what we're putting into our bodies. Finlandia Butter is made from pure, hormone-free milk, which comes from happy cows that live on family-owned farms in Finland—the greenest country on Earth. No hidden chemicals, no factory farms—just pure, creamy goodness. I love this!! It makes me want to meet the cows and farmers and thank them for caring about us!
SECRET #3: GET THE WHOLE FAMILY INVOLVED
Getting your family involved in the kitchen can help create lasting memories and start an important conversation around nutrition and health. We don't do that enough at my house. But now that my boys are getting older? I realize they need more practice so they can eat something besides cereal when they go off to college. Baking sheet cookies? Get out the cookie cutters and let your kids create the shapes. Cooking a grilled cheese? Let your significant other butter the bread. If you're in need of some culinary inspiration, check out the Finlandia Cheese Facebook page. Good stuff there! And if you need to know where to find Findlandia products, you can go here: https://www.finlandiacheese.com/product-locator/
Got any baking secrets of your own? I'd love to hear about them! Be sure to share your thoughts in the comments below.
**Disclosure: As always, this review is based on my own honest opinions. I did not receive compensation for this post, but did receive Finlandia products to help facilitate the review. Just keepin' it real, Y'all!***