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Pahoa resident in finals of cranberry recipe contest

MEDIA RELEASE

A Pahoa resident is in the final four of Ocean Spray’s 2009 Ultimate Cranberry Recipe Contest. 

Kara Adanalian, formerly of Fresno, Calif., made the finals of the home cook category with her recipe “Sweet-nSavory Haricot Verts” and is off to New York for a TV appearance.

A winner from each category – foodservice professionals and home cooks – will receive $25,000 cash and a year supply of Ocean Spray products. 

Contest judge and Food Network Star Tyler Florence, host of “Tyler’s Ultimate,” will announce the winners Oct. 6 following a live cook-off in New York City.

The contest attracted more than 2,000 new cranberry culinary creations in the professional and home cook divisions. Innovative cranberry concepts included everything from panini sandwiches and panna cotta desserts to chutneys, salads, hearty stews and flavorful main dishes.

Many of the cranberry items in this year’s entries were accentuated with a mix of slightly more exotic influences, inspiring ingredients such as Fleur de sel and smoked salt, black rice, chipotle and ancho chile powders. 

As seen in a number of the finalist recipes, dishes also reflected a trend toward Asian-inspired flavors. hoisin sauce, fish sauce, Chinese five-spice powder, star anise, lemongrass and sesame oil were common choices.

“Most people think about cranberries during the holidays but they are versatile and can be used year-round,” Florence said. “Cranberries can add a new dimension to almost any dish or drink, so I’m looking forward to seeing how they are showcased at the cook-off.”

The Finalists

Finalist recipes in the consumer category include Sweet-n-Savory Haricot Verts from Kara Adanalian of Pahoa and Fresno, Calif.; Savory Blue Cranberry Shortbread with Caramelized Onion Cranberry Jam from Laureen Pittman of Riverside, Calif.; Cranberry Bacon Brunch Scones with Cranberry Pecan Cream Cheese from Patrice Hurd of Bemidji, Minn.; Cranberry Monte Cristo Strata of Janice Elder, from Charlotte, N.C.

The foodservice finalist recipes included a Tropical Summer Sling from Lewis Thompson of DNC/MFS Food Group at Richmond International Airport in Richmond, Va.; Trail Mix Tortoni from Bryan Buffington of Lanier Village Estates in Gainesville, Ga.; Asian Shrimp and Scallops with Ginger Cranberry Syrup from Katsuto Sandifer of Homestead Resort in Warm Springs, Va.; and Cranberry Wontons with Cranberry Jalapeno Jelly Dipping Sauce from Chris Wright of Saz’s in Waukesha, Wis.

Finalists receive a trip for two to New York City to compete Oct. 5 in a live cook-off. In addition to Chef Tyler Florence, the esteemed judging panel includes Executive Chef Chris Gatto of UNO Chicago Grill® and Woman’s Day Food Director Jackie Plant.

Ocean Spray is an agricultural cooperative owned by more than 600 cranberry growers in Massachusetts, Wisconsin, New Jersey, Oregon, Washington, British Columbia, and other parts of Canada as well as more than 50 Florida grapefruit growers. 

Ocean Spray was formed more than 75 years ago by three cranberry growers from Massachusetts and New Jersey. Florida grapefruit growers joined the Cooperative in 1976. Ocean Spray is North America’s leading producer of canned and bottled juices and juice drinks, and has been the best-selling brand name in the canned and bottled juice category since 1981. 

Ocean Spray posted fiscal 2008 sales of $1.9 billion.

Johnson & Wales University and Tadware & Company, Inc. tested the recipes based on creativity, use of product, taste, overall appearance and ease of preparation to decide the top four finalists from each category. 

The finalist recipes are featured on www.oceanspray.com and www.oceansprayfoodservice.com.

Here’s Adanalian’s Sweet-n-Savory Haricot Verts recipe:

INGREDIENTS:

1/4 cup sherry

1/4 cup Ocean Spray® Cranberry Juice Cocktail

freshly ground black pepper to taste

1/2 cup blanched almonds, toasted**

10 ounces fresh or frozen green beans

1 small onion, sliced

2 tablespoons water

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 cloves garlic, sliced

2 tablespoons butter

1 teaspoon cumin seed*

1 teaspoon curry powder

4 ounces Ocean Spray® Craisins® Original Dried Cranberries

DIRECTIONS:

If using fresh green beans, cook in salted boiling water for 3 to 4 minutes or until just tender. Drain; rinse in cold water.

Combine onion, water and salt in large skillet. Cook over medium-high heat until water evaporates. Add beans, garlic, butter, cumin and curry powder; stir to coat beans. Stir in dried cranberries, sherry, juice cocktail and pepper. Reduce heat to medium-low; cook for 5 to 10 minutes or until liquid evaporates and mixture is heated through. Sprinkle with almonds.

Makes 2 servings.

*If desired, lightly toast cumin seed in small skillet and pound with mortar and pestle to bring out flavor.

**To toast almonds, cook in small nonstick skillet over medium heat, stirring constantly, for 5 to 6 minutes or until golden brown and fragrant. Toasted salted Marcona almonds can be substituted.

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