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How to Freeze Cooked & Smoked Ham

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If you’re like me, you’re probably on the lookout for ways to save on your groceries. One of the best ways to do this is to buy in bulk and ham is no exception to this tip. If you don’t have a large family, however, you’re going to need a way to keep it fresh once the ham has been cooked and freezing is the way to go! Proper freezing can be done in just a few easy steps that will insure juicy, flavorful ham everytime.

How to freeze cooked & smoked ham

Things you will need:

  • A sharp knife
  • Cutting board
  • Freezer bags (Gallon, Quart, Sandwich, etc.)
  • Permanent marker

The first step is to break down your ham into smaller pieces. Whether you slice or dice it, smaller pieces will allow the ham to freeze more uniformly, resulting in less ice crystals inside of the meat. This helps to keep your ham from getting tough and freezer burned.

The second step is to get your ham into freezer safe bags. Break up the meat according to how much you’ll use for a single meal. You’ll want to break it up because once you’ve thawed the meat for a meal, you won’t want to refreeze it. That would toughen the meat drastically and make it inedible.

The third step is to make sure you get all of the air out of the freezer bags before sealing them. Removing all the air helps to lessen the chances of getting bacteria in the meat and prevents freezer burn on the meat. If you don’t have a food vacumming machine the best way to do this is to stick the end of a straw into the bag and then seal it up. Suck on the other end of the straw to remove all the air from the bag, slip out the straw and seal it up quickly. It may taste a bit hammy, but it makes all the difference when you thaw your ham.

The next step is to label all of your bag with both the date of bagging and the use by date. According to the U.S. Department of Health and Food Safety, this should be no longer than two months from the origina bagging date. Any longer than that can result in eating meat that is not safe for consumption.

After you’ve finished all of these steps, all that’s left to do is stick your ham into the freezer and shut the door. Now you’ll have ready to use ham at your fingertips for the next two months. If you’d like, the hambone you have left over is perfect for making broths.

Tip: If you need to thaw the meat quickly, use room-temperature water to speed up the process rather than use your microwave.

Source: Modern Mom

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What Can I Use as an Egg Substitute When Baking Corn Bread?

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A lot of people like to say that baking is a science, but it does not always have to be completely exact. You do have to be a little careful when switching ingredients, but it is possible to make substitutes when following a cornbread recipe. It can be a little tricky to find a good egg substitute for cornbread, but there are a few key ingredients that will work. Whether you are trying to create a vegan recipe or you just forget to pick up eggs at the grocery store, there are many excellent substitutes available for eggs.

What to Look for in an Egg Substitute

When you are choosing your egg substitute, it is important to take into account the role of eggs in your recipe. Some recipes use eggs as a binding agent because the proteins and fats help to mix ingredients together. Another common use for eggs is creating fluffy baked goods because their proteins can trap air in dough. Egg yolks are rich in fat, which helps to transmit flavor, so they can be a generally tasty addition, and they are also used as a moistening ingredient in many recipes. Depending on what the purpose of egg is in your recipe, one type of substitute may be more effective than another. Corn bread generally uses eggs for binding, airiness, flavor, and moisture, so you need to look for substitutes that fulfill all these purposes.

Commercial Egg Substitutes

These are generally a great all purpose substitute for eggs, but keep in mind that some types may include some egg whites, making them unsuitable for those with an allergy or moral opposition to eggs. Keep in mind that the gelling ingredients in egg substitutes can slightly dry out or harden your cornbread. You can normally fix this by adding a tablespoon or two of melted butter to your recipe.

Flax Seed

Flax seed is a fantastic vegan egg alternative that mimics many of the binding properties of egg. For each egg that a cornbread recipe calls for, grind up two tablespoons of flax seed, dissolve it into three tablespoons of water, and let it sit until slightly thickened, about three minutes. However, flax seed does not help items to rise, so you might need about some extra leavener in your cornbread mixture. Generally, about ¼ teaspoon of baking powder is enough.

Pureed Fruits

An equal amount of pureed apple, pumpkin, banana, or avocado provides all the rich flavor and moisture of an egg. Though these make a nice moist texture, they do add the distinctive fruit flavor to the cornbread. Therefore, they usually work better in recipes for a very rich, sweet cornbread. Just like flaxseed, you will need to add some extra baking powder to make your cornbread fluffy enough when using this egg substitute.

Mayonnaise, Greek Yogurt, or Sour Cream

Though none of these options are vegan, they are still great egg substitutes. All of these items are loaded with yogurt and fat, and their flavor does not really change the flavor of your cornbread at all. Generally, about three tablespoons of one of these items work just as well as an egg, but you may need a pinch of extra baking powder for extra lift in your cornbread.

On another note, how about a different recipe for a yummy bread? This cheesy olive bread is guaranteed to please!

Source: Modern Mom

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How Long & What Temperature Do You Bake Frozen Lasagna?

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Frozen lasagna is a great go-to meal that can be easily heated in a pinch when you are otherwise too busy to cook a complicated meal for your family. Lasagna is a satisfying food, perfect for eating at either lunch or dinner. Prepared with ingredients at their optimum freshness and flavor before freezing, frozen lasagna is a convenient, fast meal that can be stored in its original packaging for up to 6 months. Freshly prepared lasagna at home, which is easy to make with simple ingredients, that is later frozen can be stored for the same amount of time, as long as it is properly wrapped and contained.

Baking Time

Store-bought frozen lasagna can be baked as-is, straight from the freezer, in a pre-heated oven. Package directions will indicate how long to bake the lasagna for, but as a general rule, it takes about 90 minutes to bake an average-sized frozen lasagna. For the first portion of the baking time, the lasagna will cook with its plastic covering still on with vents cut into it. For the second portion of the baking time, you will have to remove the plastic covering to ensure the cheese becomes caramelized.

Baking Temperature

Store-bought lasagna will have the proper temperature indicated on the packaging, but as a general rule, lasagna taken straight from the freezer to the oven will need to be baked between 375 degrees and 400 degrees.

Freshly prepared lasagna that is then frozen to be eaten later will need to be thawed first before baking. Although store-bought frozen lasagna is made to be taken straight from the freezer to the oven, fresh lasagna needs to be thawed before being cooked.

Portion Size

If you are able to split your lasagna into smaller portion sizes, this will reduce the time it takes to bake it. Smaller portioned lasagnas can be cooked in a glass casserole dish or microwave in a fraction of the time that it would take for a full-size lasagna pan.

Freezing Lasagna Portions

Uneaten lasagna that was previously frozen should be re-frozen in its original packaging, but alternatively, can be cut into individual portions and stored in freezer containers that are tightly closed with as much air removed from them as possible. Storing individual pieces in freezer bags is another good option and it is much easier to remove the air from them, keeping moisture out.

Need another great dish? Check out the video below!

Source: Modern Mom

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Meals That Pair With Corn on the Cob

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There is no better taste of summer than fresh corn on the cob. This yummy family favorite goes well with just about everything, adding a touch of crunchy sweetness to the plate. Read on for some delicious main dishes to serve with corn on the cob for complete, family-friendly meals.

Meals That Pair With Corn on the Cob

What could go better with fresh, crunchy summer produce than more fresh, crunchy summer produce? Sautee or steam your favorite seasonal veggies and serve them up alongside some corn on the cob. For a more unique vegetarian meal, make veggie burritos with bell peppers, onions, zucchini, and whatever else you like and serve with corn on the cob that was rubbed in spices or marinated in a zesty sauce.


Give your dinner taste of land and sea by serving grilled tilapia or trout with your corn on the cob. For an Italian dinner, coat the fish in seasoned breadcrumbs and brush the corn with olive oil and black pepper. For a slightly spicy dinner, marinate the fish in a red pepper marinade and sprinkle paprika on your grilled corn on the cob. Save yourself some time and dirty dishes by grilling both the corn and the fish for your dinner.


Chicken goes perfectly with corn on the cob because the chewy and crunchy textures play well off each other. Replace your kids’ favorite fast-food chicken sandwich with homemade grilled chicken sandwiches. Serve corn on the cob with salt and butter instead of fries on the side for a healthy twist on a restaurant meal. For a fancier meal, bake chicken breast and serve with corn on the cob and sauteed seasonal vegetables. Then, drizzle a lemon butter sauce over the whole plate for an explosion of summery flavor!


Whether you are hosting a neighborhood cookout or just firing up the barbecue for your family, grilling corn on the cob and cuts of beef together makes an awesome meal! Try burgers or marinated beef skewers for a crowd-pleasing dinner. Don’t forget the fresh veggies to use as toppings and sides! For a filling summer Sunday meal, grill up steaks and serve with corn on the cob and baked sweet potatoes. You will experience lots of delicious flavors and good-for-you nutrients.

Bacon Wrapped Corn on the Cob

You know what goes great with corn on the cob? Bacon! Yep. Try this amazing recipe.

Source: Modern Mom

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Grilled Veggie Tacos

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I love Cinco De Mayo so I always have tacos on the brain! But since these grilled veggie tacos are so healthy, you don’t need a holiday as an excuse to eat them! And let me tell you, even non-vegetarians LOVE these. You can also go a little crazy and mix up what veggies you include. Sweet potatoes would be really yummy and add some nice color…

Veggie Tacos

  • 3 large portobello mushroom caps, sliced (remove stems)
  • Asparagus (Enough for at least one per taco)
  • One cup chopped green beans (2 inches)
  • One large bell pepper (experiment with colors!) sliced
  • Jalapeños (optional kick)
  • 1 T olive oil
  • salt and pepper to tast
  • 1 large ripe avocado
  • Limes
  • 8 corn tortillas


  • Place the cut veggies (except the avocado) into a medium mixing bowl with the oil, salt and pepper.
  • Cook for 10-15 minutes in a skillet over medium heat until browned.
  • Heat the tortillas by putting a single tortilla in a hot pan for 10-20 seconds a side. Or, invest in one of my new favorite cooking tools, The Nuni Tortilla Toaster. You can heat/toast 6 tortillas in 60 seconds! Now everyone can eat tacos at the same time without the tortillas getting cold! LOVE. 
  • Assemble tacos by placing 2-3 slices of mushroom, 1 asparagus, 2-3 slices of bell pepper, 3-4 beans (or whatever other combo of veggies you use). 
  • Add two slices of avocado, squeeze a little lime juice and ENJOY!

Check out other taco recipes here! 

Source: Modern Mom

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Yummiest Spring Recipe Ever!

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We love any excuse to incorporate marshmallows into our dessert. Add chocolate and peanut butter, pretend to make it healthy with some shredded wheat, embellish it so it’s super cute and colorful and voila: everything is edible AND it’s a totally fun family craft project. Here’s the recipe!

You Will Need (for 8-10 nests):

¼ cup butter,

4 cups mini marshmallows,

1 ½ cups chocolate chips (we used Guittard’s milk chocolate),

5 cups shredded wheat, crushed,

¼-½ teaspoon ground cinnamon (according to your preference),

wax paper and a

baking sheet.


In a large pot, melt butter and marshmallows over medium-low heat, stirring regularly. When the marshmallows begin to melt, add chocolate chips and continue stirring until all marshmallows and chocolate are melted and well blended. Remove pot from heat, stir in shredded wheat and cinnamon until it is thoroughly coated with your sticky mixture. Let set for 5 to 10 minutes.


Set out a sheet of wax paper on a baking sheet or large plate. Grab handfuls of your shredded wheat mixture and shape into nests. These can vary in shape and size – a perfect project for the kids to take part in. Just plan to wash your hands afterwards. When done, place baking sheet in refrigerator to set while you prepare your eggs.

Sugar Mommas’ Tip

Butter up your hands a little bit before shaping and they won’t stick so much.

You Will Need (for eggs):

¼ cup butter, ¾ cup peanut butter (we used Laura Scudder’s Old-Fashioned Smooth), 4 ounces cream cheese, 2 cups confectioner’s sugar, 1 teaspoon vanilla extract, 1/8 teaspoon salt and wax paper


In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, mix all ingredients until smooth and creamy. Refrigerate for 30-60 minutes.


When ready, lay out a piece of wax paper on a baking sheet. Form egg shapes with your peanut butter mixture and lay out on wax paper. Enlist the kids to help. The eggs are much more interesting when they are not uniform and if everyone sneaks a few bites here and there, at least there’s protein in the snack!

You Will Need (for dip):

2 cups chocolate chips (we used 1 cup each of Guittard white and semi-sweet) and decorating Sugars and/or decoratifs.


Place one-half cup of chocolate in a medium size microwave safe bowl. Microwave for 30 seconds on 30% power. Remove carefully (bowl may be hot). Stir chocolate. Repeat process until chocolate is melted.


Take your prepared peanut butter “eggs” and drop them in the bowl, one or two at a time, turning them with a spoon until fully coated and then remove with your spoon and place back on wax paper to cool. Let set 5 minutes before decorating (you don’t want to wait too long or the decorating sugars won’t adhere as easily).


Sprinkle with your favorite Decorating Sugar or Decoratif. ? We like to use India Tree because their sugar crystals are big with bold colors. Check out their Spring line at


After your eggs are decorated, place the baking sheet in the refrigerator one hour (or longer) to set. Then arrange your eggs on various nests and embellish with jelly beans, Whopper eggs, or any other fun springtime treats.

Sugar Mommas’ Tip

Melt your chocolate in half cup increments so you don’t waste. Also, you don’t have to do all your eggs at once and may store your peanut butter mix overnight before completing your eggs.

Source: Modern Mom

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Keyword: Yummiest Spring Recipe Ever!

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Brooke Burke’s Favorite Summer Salad Recipes

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Serve up a crisp and crunchy summer side with these delicious salad recipes from Brooke Burke.

All three are crunchy, colorful and full of great protein – the perfect options for a healthy and tasty lunch that won’t weigh you down!

Endive, Cucumber and Tomato Salad

Wash and slice endive, cherry tomatoes and Israeli cucumbers. Toss together with my French Dijon shallot dressing and add salt and pepper to taste.


Garbanzo Bean Salad

Start with a can of garbanzo beans, chopped raw carrots, raw celery and raw string beans. Toss together with French Dijon shallot dressing and mix in slivered almonds.


Watermelon and Feta Cheese Salad

Toss watermelon, mint, feta cheese, avocado, arugula and balsamic dressing. Yum!



What’s your favorite light and fresh summer salad mix?


Source: Modern Mom

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Summer Sipper – Cantaloupe Cooler Recipe

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Happy summer! Last week Joy and I came up with a great drink we call the Summer Sipper!!

This one is quite refreshing served ice cold. It is simply a cantaloupe melon mixed with sweet fresh mint. Melon is very hydrating, full of vitamins C and A and rich in antioxidants. They are very low in calories about 60 or so calories a cup and made up mostly of water. Choose melons that feel a bit heavy for its size and check for bruises. Keep them uncut in a cool dry place until ready to use.

Get creative and try different fruits, whatever your family prefers!!! Our Papa’s favorite fruit was melon and any kind was fine with him. Watermelon, casaba or honeydew melons would be a wonderful choice for this recipe too, oh the colors……just so beautiful! He would bring them home from our family grocery store. They were so big and beautiful back then and we remember the amazing scent!! Every time they are on the counter I can smell that sweet scent and it takes me back to him….OMG, what we wouldn’t do for just one more day with our Grandparents!
Cantaloupe Cooler
1 cantaloupe, cube
organic simple syrup, to taste, recipe follows* (optional)
1 cup coconut water, add more if desired
1 lime, juiced
mint leaves, garnish
watermelon balls, garnish

Organic Simple Syrup:
2 cups spring water
2 cups organic sugar
Place the water and sugar in a medium heavy-bottomed saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium and simmer for 2 minutes until the sugar has dissolved and the syrup slightly thickens, stirring occasionally. Transfer to a bowl and let cool to room temperature. Pour into a squeeze bottle, or glass jar, and refrigerate for up to 1 month.

** you do not need to sweeten with a simple syrup. Your guests can add a sweetener they prefer like organic honey, agave or stevia

Source: Modern Mom

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Taking a Family Approach to Health and Weight Loss

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As a Mom if you put an emphasis on health it will motivate your children to eat better and be more active. Your involvement is crucial, and even better, get the entire family on board, engaged and focused on health. It changes the focus from losing weight to choosing the right foods and being active to stay healthy. When everyone in the family gets involved, it demonstrates that eating the right foods isn’t just “a diet for losing weight”, but that it’s a way of being strong, committed to health and that it’s good for the entire family!

This approach also teaches a positive life lesson and shows our children that it’s not about short-term changes or quick solutions. It’s about the family being committed to making lifelong behavior changes. What a terrific way to highlight the positive while moving toward the goal of having a happier and healthier family.

Why is this so important right now? Look at these top reasons why you might want to consider a healthy eating program for you and your family:

  • One in three Americans now have prediabetes. More than 84% don’t even know they have it.
  • More than 2 in 3 adults are considered to be overweight or obese.
  • About 1 in 6 children and youth ages 2 to 19 are considered obese.
  • Covid 15 weight gain is very real. Many youth and adults are turning to carb-heavy foods for comfort.

Look at these real-life examples to get inspired and start making changes in your family:

A Mom and her teenage daughter chose the Keto lifestyle and it united them behind a GOAL and allowed them to cook and eat together, coach together and celebrate their victories together. This journey ultimately brought them closer, (Dad jumped in too) and the family is forever changed.

Mom (Gloria) was looking to lose weight and get healthy. Her daughter (Sophia 19) had gained 40 pounds while away at college. Sophia’s doctor had given her a stern warning about her weight and gave her a diagnosis of prediabetes. The topic of “weight” and “prediabetes” was something she refused to talk about.

She was reluctant but agreed to give Keto a try after meeting me knowing I’d coach them. She knew I’d be there every step of the way to guide her, support her and be a buffer if needed. Both Mom and daughter jumped in and flourished! A grand total of 75 pounds is gone between the two of them. Sophia is no longer prediabetic with a clean bill of health (she has a happy doctor too).
The heartfelt part of the story is way beyond Keto. It started with a focus on their diet, then a goal to get healthy but it ended up very different than anyone anticipated. It opened their communication and what was formerly a “forbidden subject” was now an easy and fun topic to talk about. They are happy, healthy and still very committed to maintaining their newfound lifestyle.

Educate and Empower Your Kids

Or, take Avi with two younger children Mayan (7) and Eitan (6). She started talking to them about sugar when they were very young. She made it a priority because their Father has Type 2 diabetes and her Father died from complications of diabetes.

This is a very serious subject for her, and she was motivated to educate her children. She explained to them that their Dad is sick from a disease caused by “too much sugar” and that the body is not meant to have lots of sugar. They learned at a young age about healthy eating and that candy or sugary treats are only for special occasions. Avi is now in the process of reading all labels looking for hidden sugars and processed ingredients and continuously making changes to their food choices so the entire family has a healthy eating approach. Her journey continues beyond her household as she is reaching out to Mom’s to help educate them on healthy food choices for their kids.

Food Matters

Think about ways to make changes in your home that will benefit your whole family. What we feed our children throughout their growing years has a huge impact on their health. What we parents eat matters as well.

A great place to start is with real food, whole ingredients, fewer processed items, less/no sugar, lots of water, lots of veg, and regular mealtimes.

I hope you’ll join me on this journey to better eating and a healthy family lifestyle! Let’s chat in the comments.



Source: Modern Mom

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Turning COVID 15 Weight Gain Around & Get Your “ModernMom” Bod Back

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Just like the shut downs went from “15 days to slow the spread” to an ongoing shutdown with no end in sight, Covid-15 weight gain is very real and is now venturing into Covid-25 and Covid-30. First, the good news: The sooner you look to reverse weight that was gained quickly, the quicker it can be lost. So, in this article we’ll talk about simple stops to slow the spread of your waistline to get your ideal ModernMom Bod back.

So, how do you get reignited with your nutrition goals while “stuck” at home and doing everything else required of you? Here are seven steps to get you started:


The more we avoid the scale, the more we need it, so hop on. Write the number down without emotion because the scale will motivate you to start losing NOW.


All goals take time. Carve out 20-30 minutes each day to focus on planning healthy meals and staying active, inspired and focusing on your motivation.


All effective plans have measurable goals, actions to take and a timeline. So ask yourself: How much weight do you realistically want to lose? How long will it take? What is your plan to get you there? What is your WHY that will motivate you when you feel stuck and want to go back to overeating?


As a Keto Coach for women, I know that women who lose the most weight, the fastest, don’t do it alone. So, grab a friend or partner and keep each other inspired, motivated and accountable!


The kitchen is often the heart of our home. We build fond memories there of sharing meals together or preparing meals for loved ones. Yet, the pandemic led many to eat mindlessly. So, create a new favorite space in your home that is only for you. Your nest, your sacred space, your spot! Go there — instead of the kitchen — and have a cup of tea or your favorite beverage and unwind instead of stress eating. It works!


Creating a meal plan every week makes your life easier and you won’t end up settling for unhealthy foods or feeling famished because you don’t have the right food in the house. With proper planning your diet will keep your energy up, calm your life down and ease stress. If speedy weight loss is the goal, investigate either a Keto or low carb diet with healthy proteins, fiber, fats and minimal carbs. You will get your body back in no time with this approach.


Enjoy different, nutrient dense meals. You can have a great family time experimenting with different ingredients and recipes to come up with creative and delicious meals you will all love. (And you’ll stumble upon some that are laughably bad, too! Laugh together and try another meal tomorrow!)

Getting back to healthy living and a health weight has many benefits, including boosting your mood, reducing anxiety, strengthening your immune system, and — of course — boosting your confidence as a woman & mother!

Pandemic is the perfect time to take charge of your health and start a new daily routine to ensure you come out of quarantine healthier than you went in. With his approach you will find yourself creating a more positive and empowered lifestyle while you make “lemonade out of lemons” and take steps to create the body you want. In doing so, you will inspire others to do the same (including your family and friends). Isn’t that what we do?

Source: Modern Mom

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Keyword: Turning COVID 15 Weight Gain Around & Get Your “ModernMom” Bod Back