Hawaiian Macaroni Salad and Degustabox

Thursday, 21 January 2016

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We had a big Senior Couples Missionary Training Meeting in Manchester on Monday.  These meetings are usually pot luck. (Yum!)  I thought it would be a great opportunity to use some ingredients from my latest Degustabox I received.  This month was a healthy box because in January most people are wanting to make up for all the indulgence of December by cutting back on the fat, sugar and calories!  As per usual this was a great box!

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 To those not in the know, if you sign up for it, once a month, every month . . . Degustabox will deliver to your home 9 to 14 new, special or innovative food products for you to try in the comfort of your own home via a subscription service. A monthly subscription costs £9.99 and there is a delivery fee of £3, for a total of £12.99, and what you receive can be tailored to the types of things that you like and would use. To me it's a bit like a foodie Christmas every month of the year! I really love them! This is what was in my latest box . . .

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Betavivo is a crispy oat heart cereal which is proven to lower your cholesterol and blood glucose. One daily serving of Betavivo provides the required 3g of beta-glucan from oats needed to reduce your blood cholesterol as well as helping to reduce the amount of blood glucose your body produces. Betavivo is recommended for you if: You need to lower your blood cholesterol You have impaired glucose tolerance (such as metabolic syndrome, pre-diabetes or type 2 diabetes) You wish to maintain normal blood cholesterol levels and a healthy heart

We enjoyed these cereals very much, and having been recently diagnosed as type 2 diabetic, this product  was right up my alley.

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Crabbies Light Gingerbeer 1 X £1.49

Crabbie’s Alcoholic Light Ginger Beer focuses on the unique attributes of our much loved Original Ginger Beer, whilst offering a lighter drink that you can enjoy for longer. Drink straight from the fridge or pair with a spirit of choice to create your own delicious home cocktail.

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Red Square Toffee Mini 1 X £1.99

 - Red Square Toffee is made with 7 times distilled and 100% pure Vodka made for sharing, mixing and making the drinks that bring people together.

We don't drink alcohol in our house because we are Latter Day Saints, but my friend who does really enjoyed both of these things!

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We like mango a lot. Fortunately, our Fabulous Taste Testers Team agree and gave the thumbs up to our new Mango & Pineapples bars. Made with all natural, honest ingredients, our bars contain no nasties or added sugar. They’re made with real fruit, slow release energy oats and they’re high in fibre too.


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KoKo 1 X £1.79

Keep healthy & trim with Koko Dairy Free milk alternative. Koko Dairy Free Original is a unique alternative to cow’s milk made with freshly pressed coconut milk. Its plant based fat is healthier than animal fat, containing 0% cholesterol, but just 27 calories per 100ml, so it’s even easier on the waist than skimmed milk. Coconuts are a fruit, not a nut, and are a staple part of the diet of many of the people who live in the Tropics. The milk pressed from the flesh of the coconut is naturally high in Medium Chain Fatty Acids (MCFAs) and the highest source of Lauric Acid of any food.

Koko Dairy Free Original tastes remarkably like semi skimmed cow’s milk on breakfast cereals or in cooking, and can be added to tea & coffee without curdling. Its light, fresh, taste makes it suitable for using in the most delicately flavoured of recipes. Use it just like you would cow’s milk. Koko Dairy Free is allergen free and contains no dairy, no gluten, no nuts, and no soya. Available from all major Supermarkets and Health stores from £1.39 for 1 Litre.

We both have been enjoying this on our cereal and in hot drinks.

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BARILLA Mediterranean Vegetables Pasta Sauce 1 X £2

 One of Degustabox's products of the month, Barilla's Mediterranean Vegetable sauce is a delicious combination of 100% authentic Italian Tomatoes, ripe courgettes, plump aubergines and sweet peppers, capturing the true flavour of the Mediterranean.  With no added preservatives, Barilla's Mediterranean Vegetables pasta sauce pairs perfectly with their whole wheat pasta.

I made a lasagne with this and it was fabulous!

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Nothing But is an exciting healthy snack that can be eaten as an alternative to traditional baked or fried goods. The fruits and vegetables are freeze dried which means almost all of the natural colour, flavour and goodness are retained throughout the process. Each packet is created to provide you with the equivalent of 80 grams of fresh vegetables or fruit and all varieties are under 80 calories!! Nothing But is available in 3 fruit and 3 vegetable varieties, all of which are suitable for vegetarians and vegans and are gluten free too. Finally, just remember there’s no added……anything!

All natural and low calories?  What's not to like.  Tasty snacks!

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NUVA 2 X £1.49

One of DB's Discoveries.

Nuva - natural spring water with a kiss of great tasting extracts and flavours. Nuva is the innovation of Gemma Pond and Christine Renier, who created the business through a desire to offer people better choices. Nuva is a new concept for water drinks in the UK created to bridge the gap between plain and flavoured water. Our philosophy is simple - provide a natural product for people who want better hydration, but without the sugar, sweeteners, preservatives and calories that often come with soft drinks.

Through a blend of natural spring water and a kiss of natural extracts and flavours, Nuva has created three incredible drinks - Cucumber & Mint, Ginger & Lemon and Melon & Jasmine - that taste great and come with no hidden ‘nasties’.

Cucumber & Garden Mint - A light and refreshing water that you’ll want to drink all day, every day. The immediate impact of the cucumber is beautifully balanced by a delicate hint of garden mint to create a wonderfully refreshing combination.

Ginger & Lemon - Think of this as your new morning espresso – the instant kick we sometimes cry out for in the morning. Ginger and lemon are a punchy duo that instantly perk up the senses.

Melon & Jasmine - Bursting with instant refreshment, this beautiful blend of Honeydew Melon with a hint of soft and floral Jasmine makes this water a sweet and delicious treat.

Available at selected stores and online: Boots, Wholefoods Market, Partridges, As Nature Intended, Revital, independent health foods stores and Amazon.co.uk

I have really enjoyed these waters.  They were refreshing without being sweet.  None of the flavours was overpowering, but subtle.  Like.  Like.

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Being Hip doesn’t necessarily mean being unhealthy! Hip Pops are a healthier snack when compared to similar fried or baked snack products, typically 50% less fat than standard potato crisps on average! In the house of Hip Pops, we only POP! There is a flavour for everyone with 6 of the most popular great tasting flavours, 4 of which are gluten free! This product is made with the finest ingredients, less than 11% fat, low in saturates, and it’s “Hip Popalicious”!

Hip Pops were identified as one of the top 20 exhibitors at Food Matters Live, Hip Pops are a scrumptious soya and potato snack which are made with only the finest ingredients. These moreish savoury snacks are available in 6 different flavours, from the classic Salt and Vinegar to the authentic Chilli.

There’s also the tangy Prawn Cocktail, flavourful Barbeque, seasoned Salt & Black Pepper and the much loved Cheese & Onion varieties, so all preferences are accounted for. The delectable golden discs have typically 50% less fat than standard potato crisps (on average), meaning they are verifiably the healthier option. What’s more, they have more fibre than any other leading popped snack, so they will keep you fuller for longer.

 A great substitution for higher fat deep fried crisp snacks.

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COMPETE® Energy Bites are delicious, low calorie chocolates infused with caffeine (1 bite = 1 large premium coffee). COMPETE® Energy Bites provide an instant boost to help improve your alertness, endurance and physical energy. Recommended to take five minutes before physical exercise, driving, partying or studying.

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 This was a Gift!

CHAI LATTE Skinny Blend

Drink Me Chai’s award winning Spiced Chai is the original flavour that was inspired by Amanda Hamilton’s travels to India. A blend of exotic spices, milk and sweetened tea the product is a just add water or milk for that taste of India in an Instant!

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BARILLA Whole Wheat Fusilli Pasta 1 X £1.50

Made in Italy with carefully selected durum wheat and unmatched passion for eating well, Barilla is Italy's No. 1. Try our Barilla Whole-Wheat Fusilli for a tasty and healthy meal. Just one serving of Barilla wholewheat pasta gives you 20% of your daily fibre needs, essential for body balance.

I've been trying to incorporate whole wheat pastas, whole grains and brown rice etc. into my diet lately because of my diabetes, and this is the product I chose to highlight this month with a recipe!

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This is a great whole wheat pasta with lovely consistency and no discernable flavour that might make it taste any different than regular pasta.  I have been using Barilla whole wheat spaghetti  and fusilli for the past few months now and I really like it!

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This is a deliciously creamy pasta salad.   I am not sure why it is called Hawaiian Macaroni Salad, perhaps it orginated in that lovely place.  In any case it was really tasty!

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There was a lovely crunch from the grated carrot and the celery.  I love a bit of crunch in my salads, and the spring onions added a spot of zest!

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The dressing was really creamy and delicious.  Because we were taking this to a pot luck lunch I chose to garnish it with some tasty croutons and bacon bits  . . . and I had sprinkled some sweet paprika on top for a bit of added colour.  It went down a real treat. Empty dish at the end.  I love it when that happens.

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*Hawaiian Style Macaroni Salad*
Serves 16 
This pasta salad is deliciously different.  Easy to make with delicious flavours.  Simple, but very popular!  I don't know why it is called Hawaiian, I only know it's delicious. 

1 pound macaroni noodles (I use whole wheat fusilli)
120ml of apple cider vinegar (1/2 cup)
450ml of whole or 2% milk (don't be tempted to use skim) (2 cups)
440g full fat mayonnaise (2 cups)
2 TBS soft light brown sugar
4 spring onions, trimmed and thinly sliced
1 carrot, peeled and grated
1 stalk of celery, finely chopped
1 tsp salt
1 1/2 to 2 tsp black pepper 

Cook the pasta according to the package directions.  Drain well and return to the saucepan.  Pour over the cider vinegar and toss together, until it is absorbed.  Let stand for 10 minutes.  Whisk together 220g of the mayonnaise (1 cup), 355ml of the milk (1 1/2 cups) the brown sugar and the salt and pepper.  Pour this over the pasta and stir to coat.   Allow to cool completely.  Once completely cold, fold in the remaining milk and mayonnaise, along with the grated carrot, chopped celery and sliced spring onion.  Taste and adjust seasoning as required.  Allow to chill for at least an hour (covered) before serving!

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This dish is just perfect for buffets, pot lucks or cover dish affairs.  Everyone always eats it right up.

Many thanks to Degustabox for sending me this box. I have to say I really look forward to getting my box each month. There are always lots of things in it to enjoy and new products to try out. I highly recommend. You can also tailor the boxes to your own likes and dislikes by filling in your own Taste Profile. I also have a code which is worth a £6.00 discount off your first box when registering. Simply use the code: BLDEG15

Do check out the Degustabox web page for more information and details.

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  1. You cracked me up..maybe it was the sweetness that made you call it that:)

    1. Maybe. ;-) It's good though I did not break into a hula dance! xo

  2. Hi Marie I don't think I dreamed this but did you have a post abut slow cooked meals with lots of links. I was really excited about the ideas but when I went back there was nothing there, not even in history!I was thinking about the turkey breast, etc.

    1. I did Andy, but deleted it because I didn't think anyone would enjoy, but now I think I will repost it. xo

  3. Oh please do! I glanced through and was looking forward to studying it later. I was thinking of trying the turkey breast. Take care, Pam.

    1. I did do Pam. It should be up now. xo

      PS - Sorry I called you Andy earlier!


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