The National Frozen Food Association celebrates March as National Frozen Food Month with the theme, "A Celebration of Taste."

"Frozen Food Age," a monthly trade magazine, says dollar sales of frozen entrees, dinners and breakfast foods totaled $5.6 billion during a recent one-year period. Frozen food items that are reduced in calories, sodium, fat, or cholesterol, or that offer other health benefits, comprised $1.5 billion of this total.To celebrate National Frozen Food Month, the National Frozen Food Association offers the recipes above.

Beef Goulash Vegetable Soup

1 pound lean ground beef

1 cup frozen chopped onions

1/2 cup chopped celery

6 cups beef broth or stock

One 10-ounce package or 21/2 cups frozen cut green beans

One 8-ounce can tomato sauce

11/2 to 2 teaspoons chili powder (optional)

1/2 to 1 tablespoon paprika

1/2 to 3/4 teaspoon ground pepper

11/2 cups egg noodles, uncooked

Plain yogurt (optional) Saute beef, onions and celery; drain excess fat. Add broth, green beans, tomato sauce, chili powder, paprika and pepper to the meat mixture. Bring to a boil; heat and simmer 20 minutes. Add noodles. Simmer, uncovered, about 8 minutes or just until noodles are tender. Garnish with yogurt. Makes 4 servings.

- From Frozen Vegetable Council, Burlingame, Calif.

Clam and Pesto Pizza

One 1-pound loaf frozen bread dough, thawed overnight in the refrigerator and warmed to room temperature 1 to 2 hours


1 tablespoon olive oil

1 clove garlic, minced

One 10-ounce or two 61/2-ounce cans chopped clams, well drained, or 2 pounds fresh medium clams, or 11/4 pounds mussels in the shell

1/4 cup Pesto Sauce (recipe follows)

3/4 cup shredded Monterey Jack or mozzarella cheese

2 tablespoons green onions, thinly sliced

2 tablespoons fresh parsley, minced

1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese Knead dough lightly to remove air bubbles. Roll out to a 15-inch circle. Place on a cornmeal-sprinkled pizza pan or baking sheet. Pinch edge of dough into rim. Combine olive oil and garlic. Brush part on dough; toss remainder with chopped clams or mussels. Bake dough in a 425-degree oven for 10 minutes or until lightly brown. Spread crust with pesto sauce; sprinkle with Monterey Jack or mozzarella cheese. Top with clams or mussels, then green onion and parsley. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Bake 3 to 5 minutes longer or until seafood is thoroughly heated. Makes one 15-inch pizza.

PESTO SAUCE: Combine 2 cups lightly packed fresh basil leaves, 1/4 cup parsley sprigs, 1/4 cup pine nuts (optional), 1 clove garlic and 1/8 teaspoon salt in the bowl of a food processor. Process until smooth. Refrigerate or freeze extra sauce. Makes 2/3 cup.

To steam fresh clams or mussels: Scrub clams or mussels with a brush; rinse well. Discard any that do not close when tapped. Debeard mussels. Place in a large, heavy saucepan and add 1/2 cup boiling water. Cover and steam over medium-high heat until shells open, about 4 minutes for clams, 2 minutes for mussels. Drain liquid, cool slightly and remove meat from shells. Chop. Refrigerate until needed.

To steam fresh clams or mussels in the microwave oven: Place half the clams or all the mussels in a single layer in a microwave-safe shallow dish. Cover with plastic wrap. Cook on high (100 percent power) for 11/2 minutes. Let stand covered 1 minute. Remove shells that have opened. Continue to cook on high for 30 second periods until all the shells have opened. Cool slightly, remove meat from shells and chop. Refrigerate until needed.

- From: National Fisheries Institute