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Give a new take to old standards

July 09, 2003

NEW YORK (AP) - The August 2003 issue of Real Simple magazine offers these easy upgrades for common pantry-shelf items:

  • Tomatoes: standard sandwich staple. For a fresh take, sprinkle slices with sugar to enhance the tomato's natural sweetness, and serve them as a snack or side dish.

  • Frozen yogurt: standard low-cal alternative to ice cream. For a fresh take, add a pinch of lemon, lime, orange or grapefruit zest to a bowl of frozen or regular yogurt for an unexpected (and fat-free) flavor boost.

  • Iced tea: standard low-key thirst quencher. For a fresh take, spruce up 2 cups of lemon or green tea by adding 2 cups white grape juice. Chill and serve over ice and apple wedges. Makes 2 servings.

  • Basil: standard spaghetti seasoning. For a fresh take, substitute basil for lettuce in your standard turkey-and-Swiss on whole wheat, and go from brown bag to cordon bleu in an instant.

  • Raspberries: standard cereal topper. For a fresh take, drizzle a tablespoon of balsamic vinegar over 1/2 cup of raspberries for a sophisticated, sweetly tart dessert.

  • Plastic straw: standard for sipping milk shakes. Try coring strawberries. Pluck the strawberry's leaves and the stem, then tunnel from the top of the berry through the bottom. Gives you more edible fruit and less work.
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