Food, Home & Garden
Pg 9 - The Sunshine Express
Trends turn to cozy and comfortable
for fall entertaining
(BPT) As the glorious days of summer slip into
crisp evenings, the changing colors trigger a tran-
sition in seasonal d¨¦cor.
¡°There¡¯s an exciting mix of texture and color in
fall fashion that¡¯s extending into home decorat-
ing,¡± says designer Julie Robbins. ¡°As for tabletop,
a big trend this season is blending patterns you
wouldn¡¯t ordinarily put on the same table. For
example, paring a very exotic or modern pattern,
like an animal print or an architectural design with
a mainstream vintage Americana pattern such as
Fiesta, or maybe mixing a polka dot pattern with
fine china. It¡¯s unexpected, but it really works.¡±
Robbins helps customers put a new spin on their
dinnerware as the lead designer at Replacements,
Ltd. touted as the world¡¯s largest retailer of old
and new china, crystal, silver and collectibles.
Robbins says shades of purple are trending this
fall, including various tones of berry and plums,
along with warm autumn oranges and sage. Popu-
lar textures lean toward natural materials such
as burlap, leather and knits. If you really want to
get your creative juices flowing, Robbins suggests
repurposing an old shawl into a table runner.
Get cozy with friends and family
As home decor changes with fall trends, so is
the way many entertain. Gatherings lean toward
relaxed, cozy evenings making memories with
friends and family; a respite before the upcoming
busy holiday season.
¡°My favorite autumn get-togethers are around the
fireplace with homemade chili and cornbread - a
very casual, blue jean kind of thing and that¡¯s
a big trend for fall entertaining,¡± Robbins says.
¡°People are paring back and looking for ways to
entertain that don¡¯t mean setting a table for 12.
This ranges from baby boomers looking to down-
size to millennials who want substance over flash.
It¡¯s earthy and simple.¡±
Robbins says fall root vegetables and apples com-
ing into season signal a time for cool weather
dishes and the tableware that goes with it, such as
soup bowls and mugs. Canap¨¦ plates and individu-
al dip bowls are perfect for tailgating and
outdoor finger food buffets around a bonfire or
fire pit, because these smaller pieces give guests
the freedom to mingle.
Reuse, repurpose, recycle
Another great tip, when moving your entertain-
ing out of the dining room: think about the space
you¡¯re going to use, then brainstorm innovative
ways to repurpose things from your table.
¡°I like to fill pitchers with flowers or fall foliage
to create gorgeous accents that can be used
outdoors or anywhere around the house,¡± says
Replacements¡¯ Product Marketing Manager, Keith
Winkler. ¡°It¡¯s easy to turn a serving tray into
a unique center piece by placing small mums,
pansies or other fall potted plants in a nice ar-
rangement on the tray. You can turn wine glasses
upside down and place candles on the base to
create unique holders. The possibilities are end-
Repurposing is more than fun and functional -
these new uses also make great conversation
starters. Robbins plans on posting fall entertain-
ing and decorating ideas on Replacements¡¯ Face-
book page throughout the autumn months.
Not All Tilapia Are Equal
how it¡¯s raised. In some countries like China, the
lack of regulation and oversight has raised con-
cerns about chemicals, hormones or antibiotics in
the fish. However, other countries, such as Mexico,
Honduras and Indonesia, have taken great care to
grow tilapia in unspoiled environments that enable
the fish to achieve their full nutritional potential.
The immaculate, deep freshwater lakes of Mexico,
Honduras and Indonesia provide ideal environ-
ments for tilapia to thrive and are choice locations
for the world¡¯s leading producer, Regal Springs.
The company not only delivers a high quality
product but invests in practices that protect and
improve natural resources for a sustainable indus-
try and healthy community. For instance, water
quality monitoring stations and labs are located
on-site for constant testing of conditions to en-
sure the absence of contaminants. Regal Springs
supplies fresh all-natural tilapia to retailers like
Kroger, HEB, Safeway and Walmart, and frozen
and fresh tilapia for Costco¡¯s Kirkland brand.
Selecting fresh or frozen tilapia from Mexico,
Honduras or Indonesia can make a world of differ-
ence in terms of nutritional value. Tilapia raised
in a pristine environment in large floating nets
have room to swim against currents and develop
muscle. Rising above algae, mud or waste, the
floating nets also allow for a controlled diet that
ensures fish free of mercury.
Producers that utilize primarily vegetarian feed -
such as soy beans and grains - supply tilapia that
are lean. In addition, an overall healthier aquacul-
ture environment means antibiotics and growth
hormones and chemicals are not necessary to
achieve a quality product.
One of the easiest ways to judge a fish¡¯s quality is
to find approval from the world¡¯s leading industry
authorities. The Aquaculture Stewardship Council
(ASC), Best Aquaculture Practices (BAP) and Brit-
ish Retail Council have some of the most stringent
quality and sustainability guidelines.
If the country of origin isn¡¯t labeled in the seafood
case, inquire at the counter or consult resources
like thehealthyfish.com to judge the producer¡¯s
and source country¡¯s quality standards. When you
know where your fish is coming from, tilapia is a
wonderful, healthy and versatile protein choice.
Choosing good from bad
(BPT) The right seafood can make for a nutritious
and satisfying meal, but it¡¯s not always easy to
decipher its labeling. Wild-caught, farm-raised,
all-natural and organic are just a few buzz words
shoppers notice at the seafood counter, but rely-
ing on a one-off label alone won¡¯t guarantee a
quality product, particularly in the case of tilapia.
Tilapia has surged in popularity in recent years.
When raised well, this mild and firm fish deliv-
ers a nutritional punch. High quality tilapia is
packed with protein, but low in calories, fat and
carbohydrates, plus it¡¯s gluten-free. It provides
essential vitamins and minerals like vitamin B12,
niacin, selenium, and magnesium, and its levels
of omega-3 fatty acids are comparable to Mahi-
Mahi and Yellowfin tuna.
The key to realizing the benefits of tilapia in a
balanced diet is to find a source committed to
quality. Tilapia is a farm-raised fish, and as with
any protein, it¡¯s important to know where and