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Good lower-calorie sausages

The aptly named Dearborn Sausage Company (based out of our very own city of Dearborn) recently developed five new, fully cooked lo-cal chicken sausages. An Italian Style Smoked Chicken Sausage comes in hot and mild and the company is now offering Smoked Chicken Kielbasa, Smoked Chicken Bratwurst, and Smoked Jalapeno Chicken Sausage. Calories range from 90 for the Bratwurst to 110 for the Smoked Jalapeno Sausage. Available at stores that carry the brand. Cost runs from about $4 to $5 for a package.

One good vinegar

The Mizkan company has come out with a cleaning vinegar that’s eco-friendly and 20 percent stronger than traditional vinegars. The cleaning vinegar is made from food-grade vinegar, making it safe to use around the kitchen and on fruits and vegetables. Available in 24-ounce spray bottles for around $3, as well as a 64-ounce jug for about the same price or a 128-ounce jug for about $4. Available at Wal-Mart Supercenters. Go to FourMonksClean.com for details.

One good breakfast drink

Maple syrup isn’t just for pancakes anymore. This adults-only rye-and-syrup libation would make for a pleasant change-up to the Bloody Mary this Mother’s Day.

Compiled by Steve Pardo

Maple and Rye Cocktail

You can multiply this recipe times your number of guests and put the whiskey, amaro, syrup and bitters into a pitcher. Refrigerate up to several hours. Shake cocktails one serving at a time using a scant 1/2 cup of the mix per drink.

Ice cubes

1/4 cup rye whiskey, such as Templeton Rye

2 tablespoons amaro liqueur, such as Amaro Averna or Amaro Lucano

1 tablespoon pure maple syrup

4 to 6 dashes Angostura bitters

1 thin piece grapefruit peel (yellow part only, no white pith)

Fill a cocktail shaker full of ice. Pour rye, amaro, maple syrup and bitters over the ice. Cover tightly and shake vigorously for 30 seconds.

Strain into a stemmed cocktail glass. Add the grapefruit peel to the glass. Serve immediately.

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