Archive for the ‘Food’ Category
Pillsbury Coupons 2011
Pillsbury is a very recognizable brand of baked goods and frozen items with an iconic spokesperson–the Dough Boy. Though best known for premixed dough and frozen food items, Pillsbury’s product line is huge and includes way more than just crescent rolls. Founded way back in 1872, Pillsbury is now wholly owned by General Mills. What started as a simple grain processing company is now one of the most beloved brands in America.
When you think “Pillsbury” you think of the dough-boy and various baked treats, or maybe of dinner rolls or special Thanksgiving desserts. Pillsbury offers everything from refrigerated cookie dough, easy bake dinner rolls, pie crusts,frozen breakfast food, refrigerated breads, and biscuit dough. Almost all Pillsbury goods are distributed directly under the Pillsbury brand, though same are branded for specific chain stores–specifically, Pillsbury is in
charge of popular frozen pizza brands Jeno’s and Totino’s.
Since you probably already buy a ton of Pillsbury goods, finding coupons to make them cheaper is a good way to save cash on your bill at the grocery store. Here’s how to find coupons and deals on your favorite Pillsbury products.
Online Pillsbury Coupons for Toaster Strudels and Crescents
Like most things, the first place to search for Pillsbury coupons is directly from their website, Pillsbury.com. When you join their membership club, you’ll get free coupons, recipes, a newsletter, and access to easy to find online printable coupons directly through Pillsbury.com. Not just Pillsbury branded products, either, but almost all General Mills products are covered by these coupons. Signing up with Pillsbury.com is free and doesn’t take more than a minute–as soon as you sign up, you’ll have access to $30 in coupons and special promotions. These promotions repeat monthly.
Another place to search for Pillsbury coupons are the popular third-party coupon gathering sites. Simply running a Google search for “Pillsbury coupons” should bring up dozens of coupon gathering sites where Internet users post coupons and deals they’ve found in one location. Sites like 8coupons.com and coupons.com have the occasional Pillsbury coupon, though they are not as common now thanks to the existence of the Pillsbury.com member newsletter.
Other Pillsbury Coupon Sources
Your local newspaper prints a coupon section that often has a few Pillsbury coupons. Check your Sunday edition for coupons good at most retail settings on Pillsbury brand and General Mills brand goods.
When you buy Pillsbury products, they often have coupons for other Pillsbury goods printed on the label or inside the packaging. These coupons aren’t huge–usually good for a quarter or two off another Pillsbury product, but every cent counts.
Pillsbury is a trusted name in food, and now that you can join their members-only newsletter and get exclusive coupons (and you can search third-party coupon websites) you can save money on the Pillsbury goods you’d buy anyway. Don’t pay full price for chocolate chip cookie dough or crescent rolls–check out Pillsbury.com and join the club to start saving money right away.
- Applebees Coupons
- Bed Bath and Beyond Coupons
- Best Buy Coupons
- Clairol Coupons
- Cheerios Coupons
- Charmin Coupons
- Chex Mix Coupons
What is a Safe Fast Diet?
A safe fast diet is just what it sounds like–a quick but careful way to drop pounds in weeks or even days as opposed to longer term diet plans.
The safe fast diet that everyone is talking about is called the calorie shifting diet.
The best part about the calorie shifting diet and other diets like it is that you aren’t being restricted to some extremely low amount of calories — in fact, you can eat just about the same number of calories as you do normally. Like the name implies, you’re “shifting” your caloric intake around. The idea is to increase your metabolic rate by manipulating what kinds of calories you’re eating.
People who hype calorie shifting diets say you can lose as much as ten pounds in just eleven days without starving yourself or taking diet pills.
The principle behind calorie shifting is that changing your caloric intake from day to day keeps your metabolism active, constantly adapting to new amounts of caloric intake. A constant change in your caloric intake keeps your metabolism “on its toes”, whereas eating the same amount of food every day makes your metabolism a constant and unchanging thing.
This is not some radical crash diet — a gradual weight change of less than ten pounds over the course of more than eleven days is not bad for your body, and will produce a subtle change in weight that your friends and loved ones will notice.
The diet is also very adaptable — if you want to lose a little more weight, you simply stay off the diet for three days and start the process again — in the three day off period, eat healthy and exercise every day, and you may found you’ve lost a slight amount of weight in the interim.
Fast diet plans are often seen as unsafe, and many of them are. Eating iceberg lettuce and smoking cigarettes for two weeks (the ballerina plan) or taking pills you buy off a college kid in Greenpoint (the Olsen twin plan) are at the low end of the safe (and legal) spectrum, while at the less extreme (and less likely to show you good weight loss) end, there is the calorie shifting plan. You’re not going to lose 20 pounds in a week, but if you’re looking to shrink that waist size, the calorie shifting plan may be the one for you.
We’ve written several other posts about specific diets. These include:
This is always a confusing one for me. I never know approximately how much to tip a food delivery person. I know that they are usually (but not always) just the delivery guy. They are not the chef or cook that prepared the food. Also, some restaurants charge a delivery fee on top of the cost of the meal. So you are already paying for the food to be delivered, right? But I guess that is the same as just going into a restaurant, paying for your meal, and still tipping the waitress for her service. Hourly wages for waitresses are abysmal so that is why they rely so much on tips. I can’t imagine delivery guys making more than waitresses do as far as hourly wages go. They are probably hoping for some nice tips to help pay for the gas. So that brings me back to my question. How much should you tip for food delivery? Is there an unspoken amount or percentage? Are there any other factors that might go into the tip? I did a little research and here is what I found out.
Restaurant Tipping Versus Delivery Tipping
In most cases, when you walk into a restaurant, you are going to be tipping around 30% of your total bill. This is for your waiter or waitress who hopefully takes care of you, makes you feel welcome, and makes sure you get what you ordered without any foreign objects in it. They should stop by the table several times to refill your drink, ask if you want that over-priced dessert, and make sure that everything is okay. You could be at the restaurant anywhere from thirty minutes to over an hour. That is a long time for someone to wait on you.
Now let’s take a look at delivery guys. They are either driving or, if just around the corner, walking an armload of food over to your place. They knock on your door, hand you the food, and leave. They are not coming into your home to set the food around the table, get your drinks, and serve it to you. So the time that they spend with you is pretty short and they definitely don’t stick around to make sure that the food is what you ordered. The bottom line to this is that they aren’t going to get the same percentage as in a restaurant. A fair amount to tip for a simple delivery is going to be around 15% to 20%. However, there are some other variables you might want to consider.
Distance and Time
You should also consider distance and the time it takes to get to your place. Some restaurants will drive a good distance for deliveries. If the delivery person has a long way to travel then you have to figure that it is going to take more gas and will take longer for the food to arrive. You should probably tip more than 15% for this service. And don’t complain if it takes a long time for the food to arrive.
On the other hand, if the restaurant is only a block away and it takes two hours to get your food, then you definitely have cause to complain. But don’t take it out on the delivery person. They were likely waiting for the cooks to prepare the food so it could be delivered.
Quality of Food Being Delivered
This is a big one to think about. There is a difference between ordering food from a quality restaurant and having it delivered versus ordering a pizza. Pizza was just made to be delivered. Those pies get slapped together and taken out the door faster than you can say “Little Caesars”. Tips for pizza delivery and other fast food should definitely be on the lower end of the tipping scale, maybe at around 12%.
Some Other Factors
There are some other factors involved when ordering food to be delivered. A busy time for deliveries is when the weather is bad. If it is storming or there is snow and ice all over the roads, no one wants to get out in those kinds of conditions. We want the delivery people to get out in those kinds of conditions. It doesn’t matter if they have to use a snow plow, we want our food. But, if your delivery driver has to get out in some seriously nasty weather just because you didn’t want to cook, you had better make it worth their while. Tip them big for that service. They may need it for a tow truck.
Another thing to consider is holidays. Some restaurants and fast food joints are open during the holidays and while we get to stay home and enjoy it, there are some poor souls who have to work during those times. If you order food to be delivered, you should also give the driver a good tip, even if it is just pizza. Hey, its’ the holidays.
Bubble and Squeak Recipe
Bubble and Squeak is an Irish recipe beloved all over the UK. Though dishes like Spotted Dick, Bubble and Squeak, and Colcanon are fast disappearing from UK tables, they are still popular both in England and Ireland and abroad, especially as “pub food” or among foodie populations.
Bubble and Squeak was traditionally made with leftover bits from a roasting pan. Old-school Bubble and Squeak was usually a “meatless” dish, though the juices and drippings from the roast were still very much all over the leftover roast veggies and other tasty bits, so it can’t be called truly “vegetarian.”
Since most people these days make Bubble and Squeak on its own, without the need for a roast, it can quite easily be made as a vegetarian meal, simply by removing any animal products from the below recipe or the recipe you have at home.
The name Bubble and Squeak comes from the sound the ingredients make in the pan as they cook. Traditionally, this meal was served around Samhain or Halloween, and the bubbly squeaky noises were said to be the sounds of the ghosts, goblins, and ghouls escaping into the air.
Here is how to make traditional Irish Bubble and Squeak, along with some ideas for how to “dress it up.”
1 sm. onion, finely chopped
2 c. shredded cabbage, boiled for 15 minutes
2 c. mashed potatoes
Ideally, these ingredients would be pre-cooked as part of a pot roast or pork roast–you don’t have to use leftovers. Just substitute fresh veggies in place of pre-roasted ones.
1. If you want to make a more traditional Bubble and Squeak, gather the drippings from roasted meat. Alternatively, you could render bacon and start with bacon fat. If you want to avoid meat drippings, you can also start with butter. Either way, heat your fat of choice in a large skillet.
2. Fry onion over low heat for 5 minutes until softened and slightly clear.
3. Add the cabbage and stir this mixture over low heat for another 2 minutes.
4. Fold in mashed potatoes until they are well blended with cabbage. Press this mixture lightly onto the surface of the skillet–the idea is to form a large “pancake.”
5. Cook this mixture for 5 more minutes until the underside has browned lightly. Turn the “pancake” over and brown on the second side for at least five minutes.
6. Serve with a little bit of ham, or the rendered bacon if you so desire. You can also serve Bubble and Squeak with a little bit of applesauce, or sour cream if you want to turn the recipe a bit more Polish or Russian style.
With summer right around the corner it is time to break out the grill and invite some friends over for a tasty BBQ. But while you eat hot dogs and burgers, your friends may not. So what do you do? You need to take some time out and plan for your event so you can properly cater to everyone. Provided below are some things to take into consideration when planning your BBQ as well as a few different recipes you can use.
Who is Coming?
This is the most important thing to keep in mind when creating a BBQ menu. The reason being, is that people are so different in what they like to eat or even what they are allowed to eat. For example, you may have someone watching their carb intake or maybe watching their sugar intake. You would maybe consider offering other condiments for the person watching their carb intake and maybe some healthy options as fruit and veggies for the person watching their sugar intake. Other people may have religious beliefs that prevent them from eating various meats or you may find that someone is allergic to something. A few things to keep in mind when making a list of things to eat:
It really will be difficult to satisfy everyone. So do not stress yourself out over it. You will need to make a list of people coming and just go through the criteria above and call around to see who may fit those needs.
BBQ Grocery List
Once you have determined who can eat what, then it is time to make a grocery list. The most important thing to remember here is the location of the BBQ. If you are having it in a park somewhere, it is important to buy lots of ice and if possible, get as few things that need to be refrigerated as possible. The last thing you want is to give your friends and family food poisoning. So if possible skip the potato salad and maybe do a pasta salad of some kind. Anything with mayonnaise should be avoided if possible.
As far as quantity of food, make sure you have enough food to satisfy your list and maybe a few others. It will not hurt to be overly prepared as some unexpected visitors may show up. Not to mention that the leftovers are great!
Beverages will vary. If possible, take the stress of yourself and have everyone bring their own favorite beverage and maybe something else to share. Sort of like a potluck. Not everyone likes the same kind of pop, beer, or juice so that may work out the best. If all else fails, water is the best thing to provide.
As you can see, it really is not that hard to plan for a BBQ menu. The most important thing is to make sure there is a little something for everyone and you are sure to have a great time. As we mentioned above, we have provided a couple recipes below for more picky eaters as well as a short list of things to maybe have on hand as well. Enjoy!
BBQ Must Haves
- Veggie Platter
- Veggie Burgers
- Cocktail Weenies
- ICE X 2
Here are two quick and simple BBQ recipes to get you started.
Grilled Veggie Portobello Mushroom Burger
- 6 large Portobello mushroom, stems removed
- 1 eggplant, sliced into 1/2 inch rounds
- 1 winter squash – sliced lengthwise into 1/4 inch slices
- 1 zucchini, cut into 1/4-inch slices
- 1 (16 fl oz) bottle balsamic vinaigrette
- 1 (4 ounce) package crumbled blue cheese
- 6 hamburger buns, split and lightly toasted
Place the mushrooms, eggplant, winter squash, and zucchini into a shallow bowl or baking dish. Drizzle with the balsamic vinaigrette, turning to coat evenly. Cover, and refrigerate at least 2 hours, or up to 24 hours, stirring occasionally.
Preheat grill to medium-high heat.
Drain vegetables and discard marinade. Place vegetables on preheated grill, and cook until lightly browned, turning once, or about 3 minutes on each side. (Note that cooking times vary between grills.) Sprinkle the mushrooms with blue cheese, and let the cheese melt slightly.
Open the 6 hamburger buns and divide the eggplant, squash, and zucchini among bottom halves. Place the Portobello mushrooms on top of the vegetables, cheese side up. Top with the remaining 6 hamburger bun halves. If necessary, use toothpicks to hold the buns in place. Serve immediately.
Chicken Berry Salad
- 1 (.75 ounce) packet honey mustard salad dressing mix
- 1/4 cup cider vinegar
- 1/2 cup vegetable oil
- 2 tablespoons orange juice
- 1 pound skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
- 8 cups mixed salad greens
- 1 cup sliced fresh strawberries
- 1/2 cup fresh blueberries
- 1/2 cup fresh raspberries
- 8 ounces sugar snap peas
- 1/2 cup toasted pecans
In a medium bowl, prepare the dressing according to package directions, using vinegar and oil, and substituting orange juice for the water; set aside.
Preheat the grill for high heat.
Lightly oil the grill grate. Grill the chicken 6 to 8 minutes on each side, or until juices run clear. Remove from heat, cool, and slice into strips.
In a large bowl, toss together the chicken, salad greens, strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, peas, and pecans. Pour in the prepared dressing, and toss to coat.
For more information about how to plan a menu for a BBQ, read:
You can find some pretty good coffees in a lot of offices and restaurants these days. Your options of flavors have definitely greatly improved from the days where you could only get a cup of black dry roast or instant coffee. With the growing market for gourmet coffees, there are a lot of distributors and providers. One of them is the company Coffee For Less.
Coffee For Less is one of the largest providers on the internet of coffees specifically for offices and restaurants. Coffee For Less is the website name for Coffee Serv Inc. They are based out of Philadelphia and are one of the largest coffee providers in Philadelphia, the Delaware Valley, and the surrounding areas. The company got its start as a family-owned business and has been in operation for the past 25 years. They carry a wide range of different brands of coffees and other products. You can order any of these products directly from their website or over the phone. Their website allows you to check the status of your order and they offer free shipping on orders of $25 or more.
Coffee For Less Coffees & Teas
Coffee For Less carries many well-known brands of coffees. You can get either ground coffee or, if you prefer to do your own grinding, you can get whole coffee beans. The website has many well-known brands such as Starbucks, Barrie House, Millstone, Green Mountain, Bucks County, Jamaican Blue Mountain, and New York. Some of these brands only come in one form or the other, either ground or whole bean. But there are a lot of flavors to choose from. There seems to be more available flavors in the ground coffees, however. This is probably better for offices and restaurants who don’t always have time to grind their own. You can get any of these coffees in any amount from a few ounces to a couple of pounds.
Besides bags of ground coffee or coffee beans, Coffee For Less has several flavors in the popular coffee pods and Keurig K-cups. These are ready-to-heat cups of coffee that are perfect for the office or anyone on the go.
Besides coffee, Coffee For Less has several types of tea that you can order. They offer some consumer favorites such as green tea, herbal tea, black tea, chamomile, and chai tea. Coffee For Less even carries several well-known brands of tea. Their site offers Tazo, Lipton, Bigelow, Tetley, Celestial Seasonings, and Ashby’s. If hot tea is not your thing, they also have the bottle tea Honest Tea.
Do They Offer Equipment
Coffee For Less not only carries coffee, they carry ways to brew it. You can find an assortment of quality coffee machines such as Aquabrew, Bunn, Newco, Nescafe, Grindmaster, Cuisinart, and Keurig. Also, with each brand, there are several different types of machines that you can get, depending on your needs.
A good coffee machine, no matter what brand, can’t do everything. When you want to specialize, you need an espresso machine and Coffee For Less has these, as well. Some of their available brands are Saeco, Briel, and Lavazza.
Coffee For Less Drinks
The Coffee For Less website is not limited to just coffees and teas. They do have other drinks that fit in with the dynamics of coffee consumers. For one thing, they also carry hot chocolate products. They have mixes and gourmet hot chocolate from some brands such as Carnation, Land of Lakes, and Swiss Miss.
Energy drinks are a popular alternative to coffee these days so it is natural that Cofee For Less would carry a few of these products. You can get a case of Red Bull energy drinks in either the regular flavor or the sugar-free label. Besides Red Bull, Coffee For Less also has Jump energy drink in several flavors.
Coffee For Less also carries other beverages such as bottled water, cold drinks like Gatorade, Vitamin Water, and lemonade. They can even provide water coolers which are suitable for offices.
Coffee For Less Products
There are other Coffee For Less products which naturally go along with coffee and should even be required in some cases. At the website, you can purchase many different coffee creamers, sugars, artificial sweeteners, and different flavors of coffee syrup. Plus, you can order paper and plastic products such as plates, utensils, cups, and bowls. If you are stocking for an office or restaurant, you will definitely need these products to compliment any coffees that you purchase.
Anyone who likes to tinker away in the kitchen wants to be a gourmet cook. You want to be able to craft together something special with wonderful flavors that set it apart from lesser dishes (i.e.: all the regular stuff). You want people to sit down at your table, take a bite, and exclaim “Wow! This dish is fabulous!” This should be the reaction to true gourmet food.
Gourmet food is a style of cooking that is found in any type of food, whether it is Italian, French, Modern American, Asian, or any other cuisine. But what makes a food a gourmet food? Does it require special training or culinary school? Can just anyone cook it? Gourmet food, by definition, is a high-quality food that is more sophisticated and takes greater preparation. But it is also a state of mind. There is no one ingredient that you can add to turn a simple dish into a gourmet one. There is certainly no one way to cook a standard meal so that it becomes gourmet. There are many methods, many styles, many recipes that you can use to make a simple food into a gourmet food.
What Factors Make A Food Gourmet?
Many people associate gourmet food with great taste. Yes, it should taste good. But I have a mother that makes a mean meatloaf and although it is delicious, it is not what I would call gourmet. So taste is not everything there are other factors that make a food gourmet. One of the things that makes a food a gourmet food is meticulous preparation. Often, a cook will have to carefully monitor a dish as it cooks in order to get it just right. Many gourmet foods are designed to be served under the right conditions so over-cooking or under-cooking can ruin a gourmet dish.
Quality and price of the food is also a big factor in what classifies food as gourmet. Certain foods have always been more costly than others. For example, when was the last time you saw lobster or ribeye on the cheapo’ section of a menu? Or even rack of lamb? That is because these foods are high in quality and more expensive. The general rule in the food business is, if you pay more for it, it must be more sophisticated.
You Put What In That?
But preparation and quality are not the only things that make a food a gourmet food. Ingredients play a big role. Again, it can be just a state of mind but generally, you are going to need more than a dash of salt and pepper to turn a simple dish into a gourmet dish. It all depends on what kind of cuisine you are preparing. Some of these ingredients you might not use more than once or twice a year and they can also be quite expensive. Sometimes, the ingredients might also be hard to find. I am always challenged when preparing any sort of Asian dish because our local grocery doesn’t have a big selection of Asian ingredients. You may have to do a little traveling to find the best ingredients. This kind of connects back to the section above about preparation. If you take the time to travel anywhere just to make a meal, it should be viewed as something special.
Gourmet Food As An Art
The business of gourmet food is more than just cooking a dish and slapping it down in a big mess on a plate. Many cooks and critics view gourmet food as an art. It is about creating something unique that is not seen at the dinner table every other night. It is about putting your soul into what you cook. Gourmet food at some of the finer restaurants is often presented on a plate with a bit of artistic flair. You might have just a swirl of chocolate drizzle on that cake or a piece of garnish added for a bit of color. When preparing gourmet food, it is often like creating a masterpiece work of art that appeals to our vision as well as our taste.
Texas de Brazil Coupons 2011
Despite the name, you don’t have to be in the Lone Star State to enjoy this churrascaria. What is a churrascaria? In plain terms–a restaurant serving huge portions of pretty much any meat product you can imagine. At Texas de Brazil, Passadores (basically waiters) pass by the tables with giant knives and various meats on skewers–beef, pork, filet mignon, lamb, chicken, duck, ham, fish, and various kinds of sausage are served.
At Texas de Brazil, the churrascaria tradition continues. With fourteen locations in America (and one in Aruba), you can take part in this meat-lover’s paradise in eight different states, including Texas and Virginia. The price is fairly steep for an American chain restaurant, at about a $50 flat rate for dinner. That’s why most people only visit their local Texas de Brazil franchise on special occasions.
Using coupons available online and in various other venues, you can save lots of money on your next Texas de Brazil meal. No longer do you have to save up for a month to bring your carnivorous family to the local Texas de Brazil. Here’s how to find coupons for delicious South American barbecue.
Online Coupons for Texas de Brazil
When you visit the Texas de Brazil website, you can join their eClub for free right from the homepage. When you join (by giving them your email address and a few other details) you get an instant coupon for 25% off your meal price, up to a party of 8. Signing up is free and takes just a minute, and your next dinner will only cost about $40 per person, depending on the size of your party. You will get this same coupon once a month for as long as you are a member. This is the most reliable way to save cash on your meals at Texas de Brazil.
Another way to save through the Texas de Brazil website is to buy gift certificates. The promotion changes from time to time, but usually Texas de Brazil will add $10 to a $50 gift certificate or $20 to a $100 gift certificate. You can buy as many of these gift certificates as you want, so if you eat at Texas de Brazil a few times a year, buying a couple of $100 gift cards is equivalent to getting one free dinner there a year.
Other Texas de Brazil Deals
It isn’t easy to find Texas de Brazil online coupons, but occasionally some of the third-party coupon sites will have franchise-specific deals available. Right now, for example, RetailMeNot has a 50% off coupon good at any Texas de Brazil location in Virginia. When you print or try to use a third-party coupon from a site like RetailMeNot, make sure and read the fine print. It is a good idea to call the location ahead of time and verify your coupon–dinner is fairly expensive at Texas de Brazil, so going in expecting 50% off and finding out your coupon is no good is a great way to spoil your meat extravaganza.
Texas de Brazil is the kind of restaurant where you don’t eat for two or three days before your visit–there’s really that much great food to be had. If you have vegetarians in your party, don’t worry. The salad bar at Texas de Brazil is one of the best in the world, including everything from soups and even non-meat entrees as well as a huge salad spread. Save money on your next trip to Texas de Brazil with any of the above coupon and deal ideas.
- Proctor and Gamble Coupons
- Bonefish Grill Coupons
- Wingstop Coupons
- Pillsbury Coupons
- Round Table Pizza Coupons
- Betty Crocker Coupons
- Fast Food Coupons
Chocolate is as much a part of Valentine’s Day as roses and hearts. It has always been associated with that important day of romance. It comes from the common belief that chocolate is an aphrodisiac. The delicious taste and the heart packaging conjures up feelings of sensuality and love. Women (and some men) have been the recipients of chocolate for Valentine’s Day for generations. They are the next best thing to flowers and for those that really want to make a double impression, you can give chocolates AND flowers. Who could resist that, right?
So if you are shopping around for a box of those dark delectables, you may wonder ‘where can I order chocolate gifts for Valentine’s Day’? Valentine’s Day is a big industry and there are many companies out there who specialize in that special day. There are a lot of sources where you can order chocolate gifts. Depending on exactly what you need, you may have to order early to ensure you get what you want. For some great places to get chocolates for that special someone, go look at some of the places listed below.
Valentine Chocolate Gifts Websitses
The best place to find chocolate gifts for Valentine’s Day (and to find the best prices) is going to be the Internet. There are dozens of valentine chocolate gifts websites where you can order the right chocolate gift that would be perfect for that special person in your life. You can find anything from the standard box of chocolates, items such as roses and hearts that are made from chocolate, and specialty chocolates. Shipping is usually fast and efficient and you can always choose how you want it shipped. Here are a couple of good sites you can check out.
Wolds Finest Chocolate – Worlds Finest Chocolate has been in the business for 50 years and their diverse selection of chocolate gifts for Valentine’s Day. They have everything from chocolate covered raisins, almonds, dark mint chocolate, and chocolate bars. The gifts range in price from $11.50 to $45.00.
Godiva – The grandmother of all chocolate treats. Godiva offers a wide assortment of truffles and treats in a number of different packages. You can get baskets, gift boxes, and packs all with different assortments of chocolate truffles. Prices for chocolate gifts range from $8.50 to $200, with the average being around $60. Godiva tends to be pricier than other internet sites but the taste is really decadent.
Sees Candies – Sees Candies has a number of different types of candies and treats. Besides brittles, nuts, and toffees, they also have a decent selection of chocolates. These are more of the traditional boxes of assorted chocolates. They do a have several styles such as soft centers, nuts, buttercream, milk chocolate, and chews. Their prices range from $15 to $20.
Vosges Haute Chocolate – For a really elegant choice of chocolate gifts, look no further than Vosges Haute Chocolate. They are definitely the high fashion of the chocolate world. Vosges has some cool gift sets that come in these rich, dark violet packages with bow accents. A standard chocolate gift set is around $40 but they have the ultimate gift set that includes a bottle of champagne for around $300.
Valentine Day Cany Stores
If you don’t want to wait for a delivery or you are afraid the food delivery will arrive while that special someone is lurking around, you can always try a local candy store. Valentine’s Day is usually big business for such stores, especially the ones that make their own chocolate treats. If you are lucky enough to have a candy store nearby that specializes in gourmet chocolate, then you should have a pretty good selection to choose from. If they don’t do their own packaging for gift sets, you can always buy a nice box somewhere and put a bow on it. Besides convenience, another good thing about a local candy store is they are the best place to find freshly-dipped chocolate strawberries. At most of these places you can order early and they can have the chocolate gift ready for you in time for Valentine’s Day.
Flower boutiques are extremely busy around Valentine’s Day. It is their busiest time of year. A lot of them use the marketing ploy of offering not just flowers but chocolate gifts as well. Selection may not be as diverse as a candy store or online chocolate site but you can get the added punch of flowers along with it. If there are several flower stores in your area, call around and find out if they have any chocolate gifts and get the best prices. The advantage of going through a flower boutique is that they can always deliver it for you.
Walk In And Get It
And finally, I should mention this last bit because sometimes people wait too long and forget to order ahead of time. By then it is too late to get anything custom or shipped to you for Valentine’s Day. If you wait too long to get a chocolate gift for that special day, you had better go get it yourself. If you don’t and your significant other is expecting a gift, you had better be prepared to suffer the consequences. To avoid this, walk into any gift shop or supermarket and pick up something chocolaty.
What are America’s fattest states?
America is facing an obesity problem — some even call it an epidemic.
Overwhelmingly, the obesity problem pops up in the Southern states. Annually, a group called The Trust for America’s Health conducts a study into percentages of obese and overweight people, comparing geographical areas of the country and identifying the fattest states and regions.
The news is grim this year — not a single state grew LESS obese, though there were shifts in the dubious lineup of “fattest states”.
Adult obesity percentage actually rose in 23 states — this means that an unbelievable two thirds of adults in America are seriously overweight or obese.
What are the reasons for America’s weight troubles?
For one, the economy. When times are hard, people are more likely to go for the dollar menu at the local fast food joint than spend time shopping and preparing what seem to be more expensive foods. Also, the foods that are better for us, like organic meats and vegetables, are naturally more expensive. How much easier is it to buy a pack of prefabricated hamburger patties than to invest in organic ground beef?
While the nasty economy is doing its share to harm the nation’s health and health care statistics, many states have actually improved their nutritional standards in school lunches and raised their expectations in terms of exercise in school gyms, so it is unclear why these changes aren’t working.
There is a certain element of the American population that is sedentary — when was the last time you saw a crowd of kids playing baseball in the park? Our dependence on computers and other convenience electronics may be contributing. I work from home — which means I don’t even have to walk more than twenty feet to work. If we don’t get our country back on track in terms of exercise and diet, the number of obese people will surely continue to grow.
Which states are the fattest? The top three are no surprise — Mississippi, Georgia, and Arkansas. These states have been in the bottom three for years, with just their exact position changing. Eleven of the twenty five worst states in terms of obesity are in the South including the three mentioned — the others are Texas, Louisiana, Alabama, Florida, South Carolina, North Carolina, Tennessee, and Oklahoma.
Rounding out the bottom twenty-five are DC, Delware, New Jersey, New Mexico, Arizona, Nevada, Kansas, Missouri, Illinois, Kentucky, West Virignia, Virginia, New York, and Michigan.
As for the “healthy” states — Utah, Montana, and Minnesota. Other states that come in with decent scores are Colorado (with an active population committed to exercise), Oregon, California, and Maryland.
In general, states in the western part of the country and in New England rank lowest in the rankings for fattest states, while states in the South and the so called “Rust Belt” tend to rank highest. Interesting correlations between “blue” and “red” states and obesity levels are already being made, as are plenty of other red herrings that the news media can toss to the masses.
What are some diet tips that actually work?
There are plenty of diet tips floating around the Internet, from drink recipes meant to ‘detox’ the body, to the names of the latest dietary supplement meant to “block the intake of fat”, or some similar nonsense.
Here are ten diet tips that actually work. Follow these tips and combine them with a low calorie diet and plenty of exercise to get the weight loss you want.
1. Drink Plenty of Water or Other Calorie-Free Drinks
Some people’s bodies confuse the feeling of thirst for the feeling of hunger, probably because we usually drink plenty of liquids while we eat. The next time you feel hunger at an odd time, try a tall glass of water or a calorie-free juice or diet beverage. You may find that the feeling of nagging hunger is replaced by the satiated feeling of lack of thirst.
2. Eat when You’re Hungry
Learn to look for the physical (and not mental) signs of hunger. The feeling of hunger is your body’s way of telling you that you need to replenish and refuel. If you eat when you’re hungry, you should end a meal feeling satisfied and not bloated or in any kind of pain. Eating when you’re not hungry is a tactic used to manipulate the way you feel mentally, not the way you feel physically.
3. Enjoy Your Favorite Foods
Avoiding you favorite foods sets up a bad system in which you relapse from your diet and stuff yourself. “Rebound” eating is the main reason that most people’s diets fail, and missing their favorite foods is the main reason why people relapse. There are ways to eat your favorite foods and still stay on your diet. Enjoy a single cookie instead of a whole bag, or a smaller serving of pasta than you would normally eat.
4. Avoid Night-time Snacks
We all know that night is the worst time to eat. You’re less likely to be active after a meal at night and therefore less likely to burn those night time snack calories.
5. Eat Lots of Small Meals
Rather than stuffing yourself at three specific times each day, break your food intake up into five or six smaller “snack like” meals. This makes your metabolism work all the time rather than just a few times a day. This tip has been used as a weight loss aid for as long as humans have been around. People who eat like this have an easier time controlling portions and feel hungry less often.
6. Spice up Your Food
If you find yourself eating small portions and hating it, add some spice to your food to make it more satisfying. Besides the flavor benefits, chiles and other spicy foods make you feel better and can even work as natural pain killers for those everyday aches and pains associated with a new workout regimen.
7. Protein at Every Meal
Proteins are more satisfying to our bodies and minds than carbs or fats, and protein should be a major part of your diet. Even if you prefer to eat little or no meat, you can sneak protein into each meal. Protein rich diets also mean that your body will burn calories faster and amp up your production of muscle mass.
8. Stock up on Healthy & Easy Food
Convenient food doesn’t have to be unhealthy. Stock up on fat free microwave popcorn, frozen veggies, bags of pre washed greens, canned beans, or cook a little brown rice and store it in easy to reheat containers. There’s nothing wrong with snacking, but there’s a lot wrong with snacking unhealthily.
9. Eat in Season
Eating fruits and veggies when they are in season means you’re eating them when they are their most flavorful and nutritious. Many people who say they “hate veggies” or “hate fresh fruit” say that because they had veggies and fruits out of season or boiled into a mush. Fresh fruit and veggies are one of the most refreshing and delicious foods you can eat, when they’re ripe and ready.
10. Be Physically Active
This one comes straight from the “obvious department.” Being physically active will increase your ability to lose weight and make you feel better and relieve stress. The key to being physically active is not to punish yourself for bad behavior or use exercise to reward good eating behavior. Do it because it is good for you and it feels good.
For more diet tips that actually work, check out 100 Weight-Loss Tips That Really Work at Amazon. We make a small commission (very small) if you buy a copy via our link.
This post is only one of many about dieting and weight loss. Some of the others include:
To many people food is an important aspect of their culture and heritage which is why so many of our readers are always looking for food tips and food advice. The purpose of our “Food Questions & Answers” section is to provide answers to all your food related questions and to share those bits of culture that so many of us tend to enjoy.
We’re always looking for feedback from our readers, if you have a question you would like answered please send us an email to questions [at] askdeb.com.
The articles listed below contain food advice you may find helpful. We’re always updating this section so please check back often.
Recent Food Related Blog Posts
The following are recent food related blog post we feel are relevant to our readers.
There has been a steady rise in product recalls in the past ten years. There were 467 product recalls in 2006, which is up from 128 in 2002 and as little as 38 in 1993.
If you have recently decided to switch to organic foods, you may want to consider the convenience of ordering over the internet. Many organic food stores online offer a great selection and some retailers help you find the best price too.
Brain foods consist mainly of fruits and vegetables containing nutrients that are good for brain function. The brain is a complex organ that has special nutritional needs.
Organic baby food must adhere to strict guidelines to be labeled as such. The USDA requires at least 95% of the ingredients in this kind of baby food to be made without antibiotics, hormones, pesticides, irradiation or bioengineering.
A gluten-free diet eliminates the protein gluten, a compound found in bread, pasta and other foods. Those with gluten sensitivity or celiac disease, the most severe form of gluten sensitivity, may experience weight gain.
Wheat, rye and barley all contain a protein called gluten. This protein can cause problems for some people, particular those with gluten intolerance. Some people are so vulnerable to this substance that it can make them very ill and damage the intestines.
Gluten free products are important to anyone with sensitivity to wheat or with the worst form of this disorder, celiac disease. These products are also becoming important for many others who are concerned about potential, less obvious negative effects of wheat consumption.
When it comes to food, healthy choices and eating right are important. To help you in your daily decisions, the U.S. Department of Agriculture created the Food Pyramid.
Maybe you want to know how to make beer because you have a fussy palette. Maybe you just want to try out a new hobby. Whatever the reason, making beer requires some planning and preparation.
With summer right around the corner it is time to break out the grill and invite some friends over for a tasty BBQ. But while you eat hot dogs and burgers, your friends may not. So what do you do?
There are many methods when it comes to cooking a turkey. You can roast it in the oven, fry it, or you can brine it. For those of you that do not know, brining is a process where two reactions take place.
Open up a recipe book, or turn on a television cooking show, and you’re likely to hear the words “extra virgin olive oil” more than a handful of times.
I’m something of an amateur chef. Whenever there’s a dinner party, a sports event, or just a friendly gathering, I’m the guy that everyone begs to bring one thing and one thing only — wine and guacamole.
Coffee is a delicious and often required way to wake up in the morning. There is nothing like the aroma, the taste, and the feel of that warm cup to get you going.
Coffee can be a decadent luxury that is highly addictive. Every coffee connoisseur knows this. There is nothing like the smell or the taste to wake you up and prepare you for the day.
Diabetes is a debilitating disease that if not treated properly can take control of your life. If you have diabetes then you will face limitations on what you can eat but that does not mean that you can’t enjoy the foods that you do eat.
This is always a confusing one for me. I never know approximately how much to tip a food delivery person. I know that they are usually (but not always) just the delivery guy.
Chocolate is as much a part of Valentine’s Day as roses and hearts. It has always been associated with that important day of romance. It comes from the common belief that chocolate is an aphrodisiac.
You can find some pretty good coffees in a lot of offices and restaurants these days. Your options of flavors have definitely greatly improved from the days where you could only get a cup of black dry roast or instant coffee.
There are a lot of diets and lifestyles out there on the market. You can try shakes, protein bars, low carbs, no carbs, veggies only, and teenie-tiny pre-packaged meals (just to name a few).
I love junk food. All those deliciously sticky sweets that are loaded with sugars and calories are so tempting. But let’s be honest. They are not the best of foods.
People spend much of their time trying to either lose weight or keep the weight off. The best solution is diet and exercise. But come on; no one likes being on a diet.
Everyone has their own idea of what makes the most perfect food. After all, everyone’s tastes are different.
There has been a big movement in the organic food industry in the recent years. It seems as more people ‘go green’ there has been a preference for organic food.
With the general populace becoming more environmentally and health conscious, a lot of consumers are opting for organic and naturally-grown food.
Anyone who likes to tinker away in the kitchen wants to be a gourmet cook. You want to be able to craft together something special with wonderful flavors that set it apart from lesser dishes (i.e.: all the regular stuff).
Food is big business. People spend more on food annually than any other expenses. This includes shopping at the grocery store to eating out. Let’s face it. People love to eat and they love to eat good food.
These basic food tips should help you understand the fundamentals of food preparation and provide answers to some of more commonly asked questions. We also recommend other cooking recipe resources including: how to How to Make Alfredo Sauce.
How many tablespoons are there in a cup?
To answer your question: there are 16 tablespoons in a cup. I’ve also listed this handy conversion chart for your convenience.
|1 Fluid Ounce||6||2||1||1/8||1/16|
What are the equivalencies between small, medium, large, and jumbo eggs?
Technically, eggs should be measured by weight as they vary even when sorted by size. When a recipe calls for an egg, it is assumed that you are using a large egg, which is about two ounces. The yolk of a 2-ounce egg is about 1 tablespoon plus a teaspoon; the white, about 2 tablespoons. Two large eggs give you a little under a half a cup, but it takes three medium eggs to fill a half a cup.
|Eggs, Hen, jumbo, whole||to make about 1 cup||use four eggs|
|Eggs, Hen, large, whole||to make about 1 cup||use five eggs|
|Eggs, Hen, medium, whole||to make about 1 cup||use six eggs|
|Eggs, Hen, small, whole||to make about 1 cup||use seven eggs|
I used Joy of Cooking (one of my favorite cookbooks) to research your question.
Is there really a cheese called Wensleydale? I heard it mentioned on a very funny bit by Monty Python, called “The Cheese Shop”.
Yes, Wensleydale is an English cheese produced in Cheshire. Traditionally blue, but today is usually a creamy white, crumbly cheese with a fine curd. Click here to view “The Cheese Shop“.
There are many methods when it comes to cooking a turkey. You can roast it in the oven, fry it, or you can brine it. For those of you that do not know, brining is a process where two reactions take place. The first one, osmosis, means that the salt contained from the piece of meat that you are brining sucks in water and salt that it is submerged in. Now to make it tender, the second process takes place which is the breaking down of proteins of the meat. This accomplishes two things as well. It will allow more of your brine to enter the turkey and it will make a more tender piece of meat.
And it is not just for turkeys, but you can brine any piece of meat. And you can prepare it however you wish as well be it grilling, smoking, baking, roasting, or frying it. The end result, or the goal, should be a much flavorful, tender piece of meat. Provided below is 2 recipe’s for brine. There is not much of a difference between the two other than size. One is for a whole bird and the other is for legs, breast, or parts. You are more than welcome to branch off of this and in fact it is encouraged. Add fresh herbs if you have it or you can even add juice, honey, or soy sauce. The possibilities are endless. Although one important thing to keep in mind is that you want a happy balance in flavors. Meaning, if you add soy sauce then it would be wise to subtract a little salt from the overall recipe as soy sauce is full of it. You would do the same thing for honey, subtract a little bit of sugar from the recipe so it is not to overly sweet. As you can tell from the recipe below, you have an equal balance to start out with between sugar and salt. Just play with flavors a bit and you are sure to find something that works for you.
Brine Turkey Recipes
We have provided two recipes and cooking time suggestions for your convenience, enjoy!
Big Brine Recipe
- 1 Cup Sugar
- 1 Cup Kosher Salt ( not table salt )
- 1 Gallon Cold Water
- 8 pounds of ice
You will need to find something to fit the turkey and brine in. A 5 gallon bucket would work well. You will also need to refrigerate it if possible and try to keep it below 40 degrees.
Small Brine Recipe
- 2 Tablespoons Sugar
- 2 Tablespoons Salt
- 4 Cups Water
Same as above, you will want to find a bowl that will fit the meat and brine mixture. Be sure to dissolve the dry ingredients well.
Brine Time Suggestions
These are some brine time suggestions that will vary in length based on whether the turkey or chicken is brined whole or in pieces.
- Whole Chicken (4-5lbs) 8-12hrs
- Chicken Parts 1 ½ hrs
- Chicken Breasts 1hr
- Whole Turkey 24-48hrs
- Turkey Breast 5-10hrs
- Cornish Game Hens 2hrs
- Shrimps 30mins
- Pork Chops 12-12hrs
- Pork Tenderloin 12-24hrs
There has been a steady rise in product recalls in the past ten years. There were 467 product recalls in 2006, which is up from 128 in 2002 and as little as 38 in 1993. While there are several theories to explain this pattern of recalls, the most commonly-held theories include the outsourcing of jobs to foreign nations without lesser safety standards than the U.S., heightened public awareness and the technical failures of science.
Because these product recalls tend to fall within a wide array of industries, it’s likely there are a number of different factors behind the recall of products. So let’s look at each of these factors.
1. Foreign Imports – Throughout the 1990′s and 2000′s, American industries and the corporations that run those industries have shifted jobs overseas. The reason behind the desire to outsource jobs to countries with lower labor costs. Cutting costs allow companies to remain competitive in the retail market. Unfortunately, the countries these new plants are based in might not have as stringent health standards as the United States, or may not employ the personnel to inspect outgoing products the way the Americans buying those products might wish.
China is the starkest example. China increases the number of products it exports every year, but it has lax government oversight of the new industries that are forming. This has led to the rash of lead poison related incidents in toys and other children’s products. For instance, according to the US Consumer Product Safety Commission, 36& of product recalls in 2007 had to do with children toys. 47% of the product recalls in the same year were done so because of the presence of lead in the product. These two statistics have a heavy correlation, given that many Chinese toys were found to use lead-based paint. When children put the lead-painted toys in their mouths, they get lead poisoning – which can cause serious health risks, including fatalities.
When you add to that 47% recalls due to lead the fact that 6% were due to choking, 6% were due to cuts or lacerations and 6% were due to strangulation or suffocation, you are starting to get into the 2/3rds range of all product recalls having to do with children’s products. While not all choking deaths, swallowing deaths and lacerations were caused by children’s toys or happened to children, these certainly were a large percentage of the lethal cases.
You must remember that pet food and baby food from China also required product recalls. The pet food was found to either be rancid or to contain ingredients that were lethal to pets, and one estimation was that one to three thousand animals died in one year in one Chinese pet food incident. Then there was the case of the baby food that had chunks of food one-inch wide – easily large enough to choke a baby.
Of course, American corporations have had to recall products before, but it’s hard for an observer not to comment on the increased number of recalls coming from China and other foreign sources. Experts have lobbied for closer government regulation either on the American or Chinese side of the import/export trade. This would require either a U.S. government regulatory organization, or the amending of trade deals with China to force that nation to better police its industries, in order to bring them in line with American safety standards.
2. Heightened Public Awareness – Once a few product recalls of toy products and pet food are made and these recalls are covered in the media, the public has heightened awareness of the problems they might face buying imported (or domestic) products. This will cause parents and pet owners to check the products they have at the house, leading some to spot inconsistencies or dangers with the products they own. Therefore, one wave of product recalls sends a ripple effect through those industries, as one set of recalls brings another set of recalls.
This is what happened with the lead-paint fiasco. Children died from lead poisoning, leading to a recall of certain imported toy products. Concerned parents and public officials began checking similar products important from abroad, only to learn that lead-paint was a common material in a lot of toy manufacturing. Therefore, heightened public awareness on the part of American parents, American officials and (let’s be reasonable) Chinese industry heads caused another wave of product recalls.
Once the product recalls became an international story, there were a myriad of people searching for the next faulty products. This is a good thing, so I don’t want you to take the next sentence the wrong way. Besides concerned parents and product safety advocates, you had public officials and media outlets searching for dangerous products, because this was a good way to get noticed in the public – raising one’s poll numbers or tv ratings, whatever it might be. So the public recall story became a media firestorm, which continued to raise awareness.
3. Technical Failures – At the same time, there were technical and design failures in new science and technology that caused a number of recalls, completely apart from the imported child and pet products from foreign countries. This is what happened in the recall of laptop batteries.
Whether through design flaws or similar faulty inspection – or a combination of the two – the 2000′s also saw a number of highly public recalls in electronics and electric products. Tied for the second highest industry for recalls in that 2007 report was 13% for electronics/electric products, while the second-highest reason for recall was “risk of fire” at 19%. The laptop recalls, which had to do with laptop batteries that tended to catch on fire a propos of nothing, were a major part of this trend. Just like with the children’s toys, more reports of risky electronics came in, leading to more recalls.
In this case, sometimes technology designers and engineers are going to get it wrong. When the safety inspectors fail to catch these flaws, a product recall is in order.
A case with an older technology that also had significant failures was the tire industry. Ford and Firestone blamed one another for the huge tire product recall of 2006, after faulty tires were shown to have caused several driving deaths. Japanese tire makers later were involved in the tire recalls.
Product Recalls Everywhere
Also, corporations are probably more sensitive to product recalls now than they were 15-20 years ago. American corporations probably know the financial and public relations costs of public recall better in the days of the mass media than they had to a generation ago. One industry memo suggests that corporations look at five factors – legal, financial, ethical, technical, political – when deciding whether to issue a product recall or not. The same report suggested that companies move quickly and aggressively when a study of these five factors indicate they should recall a product. So companies are probably quicker to pull the trigger these days than before, especially if they or their manufacturers have recall insurance.
There’s a motivation for companies to be more proactive, because of an increasingly embattled public that is tired of dangerous products in their lives. Not only are lawsuits more likely to be filed, but if too many cases of dangerous products hit the public consciousness, a movement towards more government regulations is likely to pick up steam. The last thing most companies want is more government oversight in their business. The last eight years have seen the federal government pull back on a lot of their regulation of consumer products from where it was a decade before, though I’ll let you decide whether less regulation had to do with the increase in products recalls over the same time.
I hope your report goes well.
When it comes to food, healthy choices and eating right are important. To help you in your daily decisions, the U.S. Department of Agriculture created the Food Pyramid. The pyramid is designed to show you what kinds of foods you need and how much. It shows you the nutrients your body needs along with suggested serving sizes, daily calorie intakes, and how much fats and sugars you can safely consume.
In 2005, due to the rising concern of overweight Americans, the USDA changed the Food Pyramid. They wanted Americans to eat healthier and be more aware of what kinds of foods were good for them. The USDA even released a special Food Pyramid for children.
The Goal Of The Food Pyramid
The main focus of the new Food Pyramid is weight control. Over the past decade, it has become apparent that Americans are having trouble with weight gain. Studies show that one out of five Americans are overweight. To help address this issue, the new Food Pyramid offers information on a balanced diet along with the correct proportions according to age, sex, and activity levels, and to put limits on certain foods.
What Are The Categories Of The Food Pyramid
The Food Pyramid is broken down into five different categories. They are: grains, fruits and vegetables, protein, dairy, and fats and oils. The Food Pyramid is displayed as a pyramid with different levels for each category. At the base and the largest group is grains. The next level up is fruits and vegetables. After that comes Protein and then dairy products. At the top of the pyramid and the smallest section is fats and oils. The size of the categories on the pyramid represents the amount of each type of food you need in relation to the other types. So according to the pyramid, a person needs more grains and protein than fats and oils.
An important base to any diet, grains provide carbohydrates which is a primary source of fuel for the body. This category includes foods like bread, cereal, pasta, and rice. According to the Food Pyramid, the grain category is divided into two groups:
- Whole grains: These are the entire kernels with bran and germ that contain fiber and vitamin B. They have not been processed and contain more of the original nutrients.
- Refined grains: These are grains in which the whole kernel of bran and germ have been removed.
Grains are essential to any low-fat diet and most people need around 6 to 11 servings of grains a day. Whole grain foods are better for you as they contain more fiber and minerals than refined grains.
Fruits And Vegetables
The second level on the pyramid, fruits and vegetables are necessary for nutrition. They are rich in minerals, vitamins A and C, folate, and potassium. Fruits and vegetables also contain anti-oxidants which are essential for a healthy immune system. The Food Pyramid suggests that men and women have at least two cups or servings of fruits and vegetables a day.
When it comes to vegetables, the Food Pyramid breaks them down into different groups: dark green leafy vegetables, orange vegetables, starchy vegetables, beans and peas, and other veggies.
Be careful of what kind of fruit drinks and juices you consume as not all arte healthy for you. Even juice drinks that say they are made with 100% real fruit may have additives such as sugar. Fruit sodas, fruit punch, and other ‘fruit-flavored’ drinks are not that healthy for you as the more you consume, the more sugar you take in which adds calories.
Every diet needs protein. Protein is the building blocks for muscle and tissue and provides necessary minerals such as iron and zinc that the body needs. Meat is the primary source of protein. This includes beef, pork, chicken, and fish. Of all the meats, fish is the healthiest as it has it doesn’t contain saturated fats. The USDA recommends that adults eat approximately 5 ½ to 6 ½ ounces of meat a day.
Meat is not the only source of protein, though. For vegetarians, who need protein in their diet just like everyone else, they can find ample supply in beans, nuts, peanut butter, and peas.
Besides meats, beans, and nuts, eggs are another good source of protein.
Dairy products are the best source of calcium in your diet. Calcium intake during childhood is crucial for the development of healthy dense bones. Calcium is also necessary for prevention of osteoporosis later in life. The USDA recommends that adult men and women consume 2 to 3 servings of dairy a day.
Food products in the dairy group include milk, cheeses, ice cream, and yogurt. Cottage cheese is a dairy product but only contains about half the amount of calcium as other products. This means you need to consume twice the amount of cottage cheese to make one full serving.
Many cheeses are high in fat so you should always choose low-fat dairy products such as cheese made from skim milk, non-fat milk, and non-fat yogurt.
Some people have a lactose intolerance that prevents them from consuming milk, cheeses, and other dairy products. If you are lactose intolerant, you can use low-lactose or non-lactose milk products, or a calcium-fortified soy product.
Fats and Oils
The smallest category on the Food Pyramid is fats and oils. This is because it should compromise the smallest portions in your diet. Fats and oils are not very nutritious so should be limited. This category includes such items as butter, margarine, candy, desserts, sodas, oils, and fatty salad dressings.
Despite the suggestion of small consumption, fats are still necessary in a diet. Fats are responsible for providing energy, transporting vitamins to parts of your body, insulating tissues and nerves, and are involved in the makeup of hormones.
For the best healthy choice, try to stick to nonsaturated fats and oils. These would be products such as canola oil, olive oil, olives, nuts and seeds, peanut butter, and fats made with olive and canola oils. Other products, like animal fats and butter, should be used sparingly. The Food Pyramid suggests that adults consume between 6 to 7 teaspoons of oil a day.
Everyone has their own idea of what makes the most perfect food. After all, everyone’s tastes are different. One person’s idea of the perfect food can be quite different from another’s. Finding the most perfect food depends on what you are looking for in food such as nutritional value, protein, or taste. There are so many different types of food that have different qualities which are essential to health. A body needs protein, vitamins A, B, and C, aminos, carbs, and other minerals in order to stay healthy.
So what is the most perfect food? Despite what some advertisers may claim, the simple truth is that there is no one perfect food. A healthy body needs a balanced diet comprised of an assortment of foods. If the body is given one type of food over a prolonged period, eventually it will begin to reject the nutrients from that one source. So you need several sources.
When you think of healthy foods, you tend to think of lushishly green vegetables. They are without a doubt some of the healthiest foods you can find. They include all the various vitamins and minerals plus they are low in calories and have no fats. The cornerstone of any healthy diet should revolve around vegetables as a staple.
Although they are all healthy, think ‘green’ when considering what vegetables to eat. Anything that is green is going to be better for you such as peas, lettuce, spinach, broccoli, and beans. I should mention that even though protein is usually found in meat, pinto beans are also a good source of protein and a good alternative for vegetarians out there.
Meats are undoubtedly the best source of protein. However, there is good meat and there is bad meat. The healthiest kind of meat you can eat is fish such as salmon, tuna, tilapia, and snapper. Cod is good as long as you don’t mind its strong ‘fishy’ taste. Fish contains all the right ‘fats’ and minerals that help fight off disease and won’t clog up your arteries with a lot of cholesterol. Besides fish, baked chicken without the skin is a good form of meat as long as it is white meat. The same goes for turkey.
Now, I love a good hamburger as much as the next person but I also know that red meat, while still contains protein, is the worst meat you can eat. It contains a lot of calories and fats that will contribute to high blood pressure, cholesterol, and add the inches to the waistline. Yes, I know its good but believe me, if you want to eat meat that has a good amount of protein without all that fat, stay away from red meat.
Fruits are very much like vegetables. They contain all the good things a body needs without all the bad stuff. You simply can’t go wrong with fruits and every balanced diet needs fruits in it. Now not every fruit is 100% healthy. Bananas, for instance, have a higher calorie count than most other fruits and too many can lead to constipation. The best kinds of fruit are the ‘juicy’ fruits. You can practically eat them all the time and remain healthy. Some of the better fruits to try out are strawberries, mangoes, kiwi, peaches, oranges, cantaloupe, watermelon, and apples. Make sure that you vary your fruits. Too much citrus may lead to an upset stomach while too many peaches could interfere with digestion.
Other Perfect Foods
There are other kinds of food which are close to being the perfect food. For grains, there is rice, oatmeal, wheat bran, and pasta (which is made from grain). For a long time it was claimed that milk was the perfect food. While it does contain sufficient amounts of protein and lactose, it is also deficient in many minerals such as iron and vitamin C. Some claim that coconut products such as coconut oil, coconut milk, coconut flesh, and water from inside the coconut are beneficial. There has even been some study into bee pollen, claiming the pollen contains sufficient nutrients for the human body to live on.
Mix It Up
So there really isn’t one type of food which is the most perfect. While some foods are better than others, it requires a mix of different foods from different groups to keep this complex system called the human body going. You might eat more vegetables or fruits than anything else but you will still need to supplement it with other sources.
There has been a big movement in the organic food industry in the recent years. It seems as more people ‘go green’ there has been a preference for organic food. These food products are starting to appear more on the grocery store shelves and there are some businesses devoted wholly to organic foods. But what are organic foods? Where can I buy organic foods? Are they better for you? Where are they grown and who grows them?
With the introduction of chemical and synthetic fertilizers back in the early 1940’s, they immediately sparked some concern among health and environmental activists that has continued to this day. Organic food is different from other modern food products due to the way that it is grown, raised, handled, and processed. Organic food is produced without the aid of chemical fertilizers, pesticides, growth hormones, ionizing radiation, and genetic modifiers. Organic foods are all about environmental conservation and the elimination of chemicals in our food. In the United States, the U.S. Department of Agriculture strictly regulates all food production that is labeled as ‘organic’.
Who Grows Organic Foods?
At one time, the only place to get organic foods was direct from the producing farmers. There was a select few small farmers that believed in growing produce using natural means. Large scale farming companies still used conventional methods with pesticides and chemical fertilizers. However, as the consumption of organic foods has grown over the years, the volume of organic food production has risen to meet industry demand. Larger farming companies are now in the organic business and have made the switch to natural methods. A recent study shows that there are approximately 13,000 certified organic growers in the United States and there are more being certified every year. As consumer demand for the product increases, you will be able to find organic products more easily.
Why Do Organic Foods Cost More?
Anyone who shops for organic foods knows that they cost more than conventional foods. Why? Since you are eliminating expensive chemical fertilizers and hormones, shouldn’t the product be cheaper? The answer is no. The price of organic foods is a more accurate reflection of how much it really costs to grow the food. Think of it like this: since you don’t have chemicals doing all the work, there is more labor and management involved. Prices for organic foods include costs of growing, harvesting, transportation and storage. Organically produced foods must also meet stricter government regulations than conventional foods in regards to these stages in production. So basically, in order to help the environment and protect the health of farm workers, the cost for labor and management for organic production is generally more expensive than conventional farming.
Some studies show that if all the indirect costs were added into conventional foods, they would be about the same price as organic foods. However, if the price of organics is a concern, it is possible to cut back on some of the costs by buying direct from farmers such as at farmers markets and other venues.
Is Organic Food Better Or Healthier?
There is some debate about whether organic food is healthier than conventional food. While organic food has definitely had better press than some conventional foods, there is still not a definite answer on if it is healthier or not. There are simply too many variables involved to do an accurate study. You have to consider crop variety, crop yield, post-harvest handling, type of soil, and climate conditions. All of these can have a significant influence on the quality of food. The traditional food growers will argue that all food is the same while the nutritionalists are likely to browbeat everyone they meet into buying only organic products.
A few negative things about organic foods (besides the cost) are that there are not organic growers everywhere nearby. That means that transportation is involved which, until they manufacture a reliable electric semi-truck, means fossil fuels. Another negative aspect is that organic foods do not last as long as conventional foods. They tend to wither and go bad at a much faster rate. However, there are frozen organics out there that still contain most of their original nutritional value.
In favor of organic foods, they are far less likely to contain trace pesticides and other chemicals which are sometimes found in conventional food. Also, a study in 2007 found that organic foods contain more antioxidants than conventional foods. But as far as taste, nutrition, and quality goes, that is all debatable. The bottom line is that even if organic foods are not necessarily healthier than conventional foods, there is no doubt that they are better on the environment and the health of workers within the industry.
If you have recently decided to switch to organic foods, you may want to consider the convenience of ordering over the internet. Many organic food stores online offer a great selection and some retailers help you find the best price too. In addition, buying online reduces your carbon footprint.
Benefits of Buying Organic Food Online
Obviously, it is infinitely easier to point and click your way to full grocery cart and check out online. This is especially true for those who do not have an organic grocery store nearby. Buying online also makes it easier to comparison shop whether you seek the best price or the best quality. You may be tempted to order from more than one vendor to complete your grocery list, but you should try keeping your purchases under one vendor to save environmental resources.
Purchasing groceries online can save you money if you have been buying your foods from the organic section of a traditional grocer. These stores charge more than the ones that specialize in organically grown and produced foods.
The Essence of Organic Shopping
The point of buying organic is not just to avoid pesticides and hormones in food. It is intended to be good for the environment too. Sustainability is more than just a scientific concern. It often translates into a moral imperative for many organic shoppers. You can feel good knowing that in many cases, shopping online reduces your carbon footprint.
To understand why, consider the cost of shipping items from a factory, to a warehouse and then to a store. Then consider the energy used in running the store, the bright display lights, the freezers. When food items are not sold, they often go straight to the trash. In addition, online retailers do not need cashiers, managers and security who would otherwise drive to work, putting out carbon emissions.
Internet retailers are selling to a much bigger population. The law of large numbers, a statistical rule, says that the larger a population, the more accurate predictions about that population will be. This means retailers selling to larger populations are better able to predict demand. They produce less overstock and less waste.
Foods arrive in containers made of polystyrene, a type of lightweight foam plastic. These containers are durable and can be repurposed or recycled. When you buy groceries every week, these containers may pile up. For this reason, it is a good idea to check with your local recycling center and be sure they will take and recycle these containers before you order refrigerated items online.
Unfortunately, there is no way to eliminate the packaging of merchandise in shopping online. The good news is that the energy in producing and recycling the packaging is much less than that needed to run traditional brick and mortar stores.
Where to Buy Organic Food Online
Organic foods are expensive, so you want to be sure you get what you pay for. It can be hard for someone just starting out to know what store to trust. You may be pleased to find out that you are probably already shopping at an excellent organic grocer. It is Amazon.com.
Besides selling myriad books, gifts and electronics, Amazon sells all kinds of food, including organic. This is perfect because you already know the website; it is incredibly easy to navigate and lets you choose the best price. On the down side, you may be ordering from several vendors through Amazon, extra packaging and transportation emissions. You can avoid this by looking at the name of the seller and choosing the same one as often as possible.
Greenshopper.com is another source for organic groceries that uses the ease of Amazon checkout. The selection may not be as good as some other retailers, but the company is environmentally friendly and donates to charity.
Diamond Organics is an online organic food retailer offering an enormous selection of locally grown and produced California foods. They ship overnight to any location in the continental United States and have just about any organic food you can imagine.
The Organic Mall
The Organic Mall is a good place to look around for harder to find organics along with everyday groceries. They even sell organic clothing, fabrics, cleaning supplies, pet food and medicine. The mall donates a percentage of the profits to the Cancer Society, Feed the Homeless, Greenpeace, Habitat for Humanity, the Humane Society, Missing Children and many others.
Organic Kingdom, in business since 2000, is a Utah company that ships groceries internationally. They carry 3900 organic food and related items. They sell organic groceries, supplements and beauty products. The company maintains a strict selection process ensuring they offer only the best organic items from local farms.
Think Before you Buy
When buying organic food online, it is important to reduce the environmental cost as much as possible. Even though it is usually more efficient and environmentally friendly to buy online, your situation may be different. First, consider if there is a store or local grower within walking distance. If so, get a cart and walk. If an organic store is only a short drive away, either option may be okay.
To minimize the impact of your shopping, be sure to choose sensible shipping options. For instance, if the post office comes to your house every day anyway, choose that option. If you are rural and only get UPS every day, use them. Think before you buy, and do the best that you can to foster a more sustainable world.
With the general populace becoming more environmentally and health conscious, a lot of consumers are opting for organic and naturally-grown food. Nutritional activists claim that organic foods are much healthier and much friendlier on the environment. There is a large assortment of different foods available that are organically grown. You can buy anything from vegetables, meats, and dairy products, all produced without the aid of chemicals or genetic hormones. But unless you happen to live on your own farm and produce your own food, you may ask yourself ‘where can I buy organic food’?
Shopping for organic food is not the same as shopping for conventional food. You don’t just walk into any number of stores located around the block and have your pick of shelf after shelf of organic products. It is a little more difficult than that. Organic food is not that common (although availability is improving). Depending on where you live, you may have to drive further than the nearest grocery store to purchase it. If you are interested in buying organic food and looking for a retailer or grower, here are some places you should check out.
Direct From The Farmer
Probably the best source for organic food is going to be direct from the farmer who grows it. This will be easier if you live in a more rural area or know of any local farmers within an easy drive. By purchasing straight from the farmer, you will be guaranteed that the food will be fresher than anything found in a grocery store. Also, if you go to where the farmer grows his produce in order to buy it, you can see their set-up and make sure that the food is truly organic. If you see several barrels or chemical pesticides sitting around, chances are some false advertising is involved. Another positive point about buying direct from the farmer is that the price may be cheaper than what you would pay in any grocery store.
Farmers Markets and Organic Markets
Besides buying direct from the farmer, the next best place to buy organic food is at a farmers market. There are farmers markets just about everywhere in the U.S., in both rural and urban areas. The produce is still fresh, usually picked within the last day or two, and shipped directly to the market. However, not all produce at a farmers market will be 100% organic. Some of it may have been grown using synthetics. Before you buy from a seller, ask them how they grew their produce. There may have been some chemicals involved. I should point out that not all food labeled as ‘organic’ are actually 100% organically grown. Government regulation states that a small percentage of synthetics can be used in production of organic foods.
There are also organic markets that have been around for the last ten years or so and have become more popular as environmental issues have grown. Organic markets are just like farmers markets except that all of the food there is organically grown. You should still read the labels to make sure you know what you are buying. Organic markets are still not as common as farmers markets but if you find one in your area, you should definitely go to it first.
Years ago, you could shop all through a grocery store and never once see a label for anything that was organically or naturally grown. As far as labels went, you were doing yourself a favor by not reading about all the ‘ingredients’ included in some food. But now there are more grocery store chains that are including organic foods on their shelves. You can find them in supermarkets such as Albertson’s, Brookshire’s, Kroger’s, and Wal-Mart. You may find organic food scattered through the store next to its conventional food counterparts or there might be a small section devoted only to organics. The organic foods are still nowhere near as abundant as the other conventional foods but as consumer demand grows, so will the shelf space.
Health Food Chains
There are several health food chains that have been around for years. They are generally found in urban areas where the demographic centers on a more health-conscious population. You are not liable to find one in the middle of nowhere stuck between a truck stop and Billy Bob’s Barbeque.
There are three major health food chains where you can find organic foods. They are Whole Foods Market, trader Joe’s, and Wild Oats Market. All of these stores specialize in food and products that are natural and free of chemical enhancements. Whole Food Markets even has a ‘Natural Meat Program’ where all of their meats are guaranteed to be free of animal byproducts, growth hormones, and antibiotics.
Some consumers may have a hard time finding organic food locally. If that is the case, try searching through the internet. There are many sites that deal in health and nutrition. These sites are likely to have either organic food products or links to other sites with such products. Once you find a site that sells organic food, you can order directly from them and they will ship the produce to you. A good site to check out is LocalHarvest.com. This site is a great source for listing where you can find organically-grown foods both locally and throughout the United States.
Find a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture)
A CSA (or Community Supported Agriculture) is not so common in some areas but if you have a local CSA farm, it is a great way to get the freshest organic food. CSA farms are partnerships between the producing farms and local consumers. After paying a membership fee, consumers get a share of locally grown foods, usually on a weekly basis and as long as the season lasts. Shares are either delivered to the consumer or are picked up at the CSA farm. This is a great way to support your local farmers and agriculture while at the same time getting guaranteed nutritious natural produce.
Organic baby food must adhere to strict guidelines to be labeled as such. The USDA requires at least 95% of the ingredients in this kind of baby food to be made without antibiotics, hormones, pesticides, irradiation or bioengineering. The other 5% of ingredients must be unavailable in organic form.
What does Organic Mean?
The ingredients in organic baby food come from organic farms that must adhere to particular soil and water conservation techniques and treat animals humanely. If you want purely organic ingredients, you must choose foods labeled “100% organic.”
Baby Food Health and Nutrition
Many say that certified organic foods are not necessarily more nutritious, but studies are insufficient to strengthen this assertion. Proponents of organic foods will argue that the absence of pesticides, hormones and bad karma logically make the food healthier. In addition, farming methods that create healthier soils may add nutrients to the food. Until some good studies come out on this topic, it will remain a matter of personal philosophy.
Natural versus Organic Baby Food
It is important to understand that foods can be “all natural” but not “organic.” All natural foods can still contain pesticide residues, Genetically Modified Organisms and other potentially harmful agents. Some foods carrying the label “natural” contain very unnatural ingredients that are derived from natural foods, such as high fructose corn syrup or modified food starch.
Storing Organic Baby Food
Some organic baby food makers jar the food with natural preservatives, making it convenient to store before use. Other manufacturers prefer to omit preservatives altogether, requiring you keep the food in the refrigerator. Frozen baby food cubes are becoming popular with parents because they are easy to order online and are kept in the freezer until ready to use. Whether you choose jarred, chilled or frozen, consider the environmental impact of keeping the foods cool on the grocers shelf and then at home before you make a decision.
Making Organic Baby Food
Some parents are starting to make their own organic baby food with the organic foods they already buy for the rest of the family. For older babies, the method is exceedingly easy. You simply take the left-over food, immediately after dinner, and place it in some ice cube trays and put them in the freezer. Take out the appropriate cubes at mealtime for baby and reheat in the microwave or on low heat in a saucepan.
What Babies Want
Younger babies need simpler foods, so it may be better to do a little special cooking for the little munchkins. Left over meats are fine to set aside for later as long as they do not contain excessive seasoning. You may wish to cook one piece of lightly or unseasoned meat at dinnertime and set it aside for the baby. Cut the meat into fine pieces or put through a meat grinder before freezing into cubes.
To make vegetables, blanch or boil them. Add a little water if needed and then put the food through the puree setting on your blender. Pour the pureed food into ice cube trays and freeze. Make baby food from fruit by halving it and placing it cut side down in a baking dish with one inch of filtered water. Bake the fruit at 400 degrees F and then put it through the blender before freezing. Grains should be rinsed first, and then cooked as usual.
The foods that babies enjoy most include carrots, broccoli, butternut or buttercup squash, strawberries, blueberries, apples, pears, peaches, bananas, salmon, tuna, chicken, eggs, rice, barley, couscous and quinoa. Sometimes, you may need to add just a touch of brown sugar to make the vegetables palatable for your baby.
The nice thing about making your own organic baby food is that you know the ingredients are 100% organic and that they are fresh. In addition, making your own can save you about 50% on the cost of baby food. When you cook baby food with the foods you buy anyway, it feels like you are getting the food for free.
Open up a recipe book, or turn on a television cooking show, and you’re likely to hear the words “extra virgin olive oil” more than a handful of times.
Olive oil is a universal cooking ingredient — used on its own for flavoring, or as a medium for cooking. Outside the kitchen, olive oil has as many uses as it does inside — it has been used to unstick zippers, polish furniture, and even as a shaving lubricant. This remarkable substance has been around since before 4000 BCE, and olive trees have been cultivated as far back as the 3rd millenium.
What is “extra virgin” olive oil? Why do cooks and recipes always call for this particular substance, and what does “extra virgin” mean?
Production of Olive Oil
To understand the “virgin” designation, you must understand the production of olive oil.
Olive oil is produced by grinding olives and extracting the oil, either by mechanical or chemical means. Green olives produce a generally bitter oil, and olives that are too ripeolives make an oil that is rancid, so for good “extra virgin olive oil”, special care is taken by the producer to make sure the olives are perfectly ripened before they are pressed.
First, te well ripened olives are ground into a paste using either traditional millstones or the more modern steel drum.
Believe it or not, some modern producers of olive oil do still use millstone pressing. If the olives are ground with mill stones, the olive paste is pressed under the stones for 30 minutes or so. A shorter grinding process makes a more raw paste that produces less oil and a rather tasteless oil at that — but a longer process may increase the oxidation of the paste (its exposure to oxygen) and reduce the flavor as well. After grinding, the olive paste is spread on a series of disks or plates, which are then stacked one on top of the other in a column, then placed into the olive press. After pressure is applied onto the column to separate the liquid from the paste, the liquid still has a large water content. Traditionally the oil was seperated from water using a simple gravity method — after all, everyone knows that oil and water don’t mix. To speed up this process, modern presses use a centrifuge. The centrifuge has one exit for the water part of the oil blend, and one specific exit point for the oil.
Olive oil should not contain significant traces of water — any amount of leftover water will accelerate the spoiling of the oil by microorganisms and bacteria. The separation in smaller oil mills is not always perfect, so it is common that a watery deposit can be found at the bottom of small batch oil bottles. This is just a fact of the small olive press.
In modern steel drum mills the grinding process takes about 20 minutes. After grinding, the olive paste is stirred for an additional 20-30 minutes in a container where the microscopic oil drops form themselves into even larger “blobs” of oil, naturally seperating it from any water present in the mix. Some presses use a secong centrifuge method as described above, to maintain purity of the oil and drive out any remaining water.
The oil produced by only physical means as described above is called “virgin oil”. The name “Extra virgin olive oil” is virgin olive oil that meets a certain criteria in the industry — specific amounts of high chemical content and other criteria, such as low acidity and very little organic defects. In a way, the name “extra virgin olive oil” is simply a way to describe the very best of the best of olive oil produced by a certain press.
An olive oil that is not “virgin” or “extra virgin” is oil that is filtered to eliminate unwanted solid material. Sometime, the remaining oil paste after pressing still contains oil that cannot be extracted by further pressing — to get to this oil, chemical solvents must be used. Any oil that comes from chemical solvents is not “virgin oil” but referred to as “pomace oil”.
There are other forms of olive oil as well — “lampante oil” is oil that is not suitable for eating, and is pretty much an archaic term. This oil was used for lighting lamps — hence the term “lampante”. You may also find a substance in stores called “olive-pomace oil” — this is extremely low grade olive pomace oil that is combined with a tiny bit of virgin oil to improve taste and quality. This is usually reserved for cooking purposes at some restaurants, and is not suitable for consumption on its own.
When Cooking With Olive Oil, There Are a Few Points to Remember
As with cooking with wine, you do not want to cook with an olive oil that you do not like the taste of. Before cooking with an olive oil, taste a bit of it, and appreciate the flavor. This flavor will be imparted onto the food you’re cooking — you wouldn’t want to degrade the flavor of your food with your cooking oil. An inferior oil will leave a bad heavy aftertaste. If you do the taste test and compare the “pure” to the “extra-virgin” and the you’ll understand the difference.
When cooking with olive oil, save your “extra-virgin” expensive oils for salads, dressings, and vinaigrettes. Extra virgin olive oil tastes great on cooked vegetables or brushed onto fish or meat just before serving. You can also drizzle it over slices of crusty bread or onto open-face sandwiches. Use it on a baked potato or add it to mashed potatoes instead of butter. The point is — don’t cook with your extremely expensive extra virgin olive oils — you will be wasting great tasting oil.
When sauteeing or frying, use either a combination olive oil (like a blend of olive oil and extra virgin olive oil) or a straight “olive oil”. Look at the label to determine which type of oil you’re buying. For deep frying, the olive oil grade known simply as “olive oil” is perfect, because it has a higher smoke point (410º F) than virgin or extra virgin oils.
Olive oil tastes great, has many uses around the home besides the kitchen, and has been used for millenia in almost every culture in the world. Understanding the differences between the varying grades of oils will help you choose what olive oil to buy on your next cooking excursion. Remember that “extra virgin olive oils” are the best olive oils in the world, but may not be the best choice for your recipe — depending on how and what you’re cooking. Bon apetit.
I love junk food. All those deliciously sticky sweets that are loaded with sugars and calories are so tempting. But let’s be honest. They are not the best of foods. If you want to keep the weight off and stay healthy while having plenty of energy, you have to follow a nutritious diet. I am not talking about diet as in a plan to lose weight. No, we are talking about maintaining a healthy lifestyle with what you eat. In order to be healthy you got to eat healthy. But what is healthy food?
Healthy food is full of nutrients such as vitamins and minerals that are essential to growth, repair, and prevention of diseases. Healthy foods contain things like vitamins A,B, and D, zinc, calcium, potassium, iron, fiber, and many complex minerals. The more nutrients you take in, the healthier you will be. If you don’t partake in a balanced diet, then your body will end up being deficient in one or more substances which can affect the way your body performs. If you want to stay healthy, then you need to read the steps below.
The Food Pyramid
A solid healthy diet is made up of the four basic food groups that form what doctors and nutritionists call ‘the food pyramid’. It is called a food pyramid because when all the groups are stacked on top of each other in order of amounts that should be eaten, they form a pyramid. The bottom of the pyramid is the group for grains and cereals which you should eat the most of. The next level up, which is smaller, is the group for fruits and vegetables. The next smallest group above that are meat and dairy products. And finally at the top of the pyramid is the group that you should eat the least of, fats, salts, and sweets.
Healthy Food Choices
When eating any meal, you need to make smart choices. No matter how good those chili cheese fries are, you really don’t need two heaping plates full. You need to eat a variety of foods in order to get all of the vitamins and minerals your body needs. That is why they call it a balanced diet. For the best choices in healthy food, you need to eat a lot of fruits and vegetables. Fresh fruits and berries contain lots of vitamins and will satisfy a craving for sweets. Whole vegetables also have lots of vitamins and minerals, so make sure you eat more green, orange and yellow veggies. In order for them to keep most of their nutritional value, steam the vegetables instead of baking. This also helps them to retain most of their original flavor and they wont be quite so mushy.
Forget about what some diet plans say about carbohydrates being bad for you. Your body actually needs some carbs. A good source for that is any pasta or baked goods that are made from whole grains. For protein, which is essential, choose lean meats over fatty meats and don’t forget that fish is the best source of protein. Fish contains omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids which is often deficient in most people’s diets. A proper weekly meal plan should include seafood two or three times per week. Stay away from fired meats such as chicken, fish, and country steak.
As for beverages, you should drink plenty of water, milk and 100% fruit and vegetable juices. Limit those sugary drinks and soda. They are nothing but empty calories that will settle on your waistline. Also, too many sugary drinks can be a factor in developing diabetes. If you get tired of plain water, there are lots of different flavored waters to choose from as well as sugar-free flavor packs such as Crystal Light.
Cracks in the ol’ diet armor tend to appear around dessert time. No matter how good they taste, most desserts are not good for you. But being healthy does not mean you have to torture yourself and cut out desserts completely. Moderation is the key. It is okay to have dessert but you don’t need it at every meal and don’t even think about going back for seconds. If you have a hard-to-control sweet tooth, there are some low fat sweets you can eat such as yogurt, low-fat ice cream, fruits, jell-o. I have even seen recipes for low-fat cheesecake. So there are some other options available to you.
Good Snacks Versus Bad Snacks
Snack time can be a difficult time when trying to stick to a healthy diet. It is easy and convenient to just grab a ready made snack such as chips, cookies, or a candy bar. Too much of the wrong kind of snack can lead to health problems such as weight gain, increased levels of cholesterol, low energy, and a lot more. Just because you crave a quick bite in the middle of the day is no excuse to eat a lot of junk food.
An important factor in healthy foods is your lifestyle and eating habits. There are many foods which are okay to eat as long as you don’t over-indulge. Moderation is the key. If you have trouble with this, then it is time to assess your lifestyle. Ask yourself these questions: Do I crave sweets? Are the portions on my plate big? Do I go back for seconds? Do I eat because I am bored or depressed? Do I eat a lot of junk food? If you answered yes to any of these questions, then you need to try to change your eating habits. It can be very difficult to do so try small changes first and work with your habits. You can’t expect to immediately change all of them at once. If you can manage to change them one at a time, then you will be well on the road to eating healthy foods.
I’m something of an amateur chef. Whenever there’s a dinner party, a sports event, or just a friendly gathering, I’m the guy that everyone begs to bring one thing and one thing only — wine and guacamole. I suppose that’s two things, but you get the idea. So, how do you make guacamole?
I dont like giving out my secrets, but for the faithful readers of AskDeb.com, here goes:
Ingredients For Making Guacamole
Depending on how much guacamole you’re making, the amount you need to buy will change. I suggest buying as much as you can stand, because this recipe will keep them coming back for more. Plus, you can always take some home or save for later — just remember, after the ingredients have been sliced, their shelf life is cut basically in half through oxidization. You could do away with this process using plastic knives instead of metal, but most people don’t have these just lying around.
There are the ingredients for making guacamole.
An avocado is “ripe” when it is sort of firm, but WILL give to pressure when applied. Don’t squeeze too hard or you’ve just bought yourself a smooshed avocado. It is not necessary to buy “organic” acovados, as their thick skin will keep any nasty pesticides out of the fruit. Just remember to wash them before you cut.
Organic Red Onions
Look for a brightly colored and good smelling ORGANIC onion. Onions, unlike avocados, are susceptible to pesticides used by farmers to kill off bugs and other nasties. You don’t want to serve guacamole full of pesticides, do you?
Serranos are best for guacamole for two reasons — spice content, and flavor. Your guacamole doesn’t need to be incredibly spicy — if you desire it to be so, add a touch of habanero or jalapeno, but don’t go overboard. Guacamole should be a mild dip, not a mouth burning experience. Also, serranos have a tangy flavor and a decorative color that is perfect for this perennial favorite dip.
Organic Cilantro Leaves,
Cilantro is a must for guacamole — it adds that unknown quality to your dip that guests will miss if it isn’t present. Again, organic cilantro is a must, as pesticides get all over the leafs of the plant. You buy cilantro in bunches, but don’t worry about buying too much — you may only need a little bit for the recipe, but it will keep in a proper bag in our refrigerator for weeks.
Limes and Lemons
No need to shop for organics — the skin of the citrus fruit protects it from pesticides. Look for quality citrus, I would suggest Meyer lemons or limes from a quality produce department. Make sure the citrus isn’t too spotty, gives a little when you squeeze, and doesn’t have too strong of a citrus smell. That could imply an older piece of fruit. Again, buy as many as you want, because citrus is a good ingredient to have around the house and they’ll keep a long time in our fridge.
Quality Sea Salt
You can find sea salt of many varieties at your local grocer. Don’t try to get by with a cheaper grain salt brand, as sea salt imparts a unique and tasty spice to your dip.
Quality Black Pepper
Quality black pepper doesn’t always mean it has to be expensive. Using a black pepper mill will add the type of flavoring you’re bound to enjoy.
Organic Ripe Tomato
As with other soft skinned fruits, tomatos are susceptible to pesticides, so purchase organic tomatoes that are a bit firm to the touch.
The more expensive the better. This is your “secret weapon”, though it is rather simple, and will give your guacamole dip that creamy quality you want.
Now that you have your ingredients together, prepare them for creating your dish.
Slice the avocado in half, pulling out the pit (but setting it aside for later). Remove the skin from the avocado — much easier after it is sliced — and toss it out. Mash the avocado into a pulp and set the pit in the center of the mashed fruit to keep it from browning.
Minced your red onion. Slice the serrano chiles and remove the stems and most of the seeds (you want some seeds in there for spice), making sure to mince this pepper as well.
Finely cop the cilantro leaves and set them aside with your other ingredients.
Roll your lemons and limes on a counter top to release the juice from the pulp before slicing and squeezing the juice from them. Once sliced, squeeze the quarters into a bowl and set aside.
Into the juice, put as much salt and pepper as you want, and stir in the sour cream.
Chop the tomato or tomatoes, being sure to remove the seeds and pulp, and set this aside as well.
For the creation of your dip, you’ll need your ingredients, a large mixing bowl, a spatula, and a serving dish.
Combine all ingredients. I start with the avocado, stir in the juice, salt, pepper, and sour cream mix, then add the onion, chiles, and cilantro. I mix it was well as I can, though some prefer a chunkier sauce. You can consider making two dips — one chunky, one thin. No matter what, always put the avocado pit in the center of the guacamole mix — it makes for a nice presentation, and will keep the dip from browning through the miracle of science.
How do how do you make guacamole? Besides just the recipe above, guacamole is eaten first with the eyes. Make the presentation as attractive as possible. Use a ceramin decorated bowl, or a theme-related dish to serve it in — if this is for a Super Bowl party, look for a bowl shaped like a football, etc. You can serve guacamole dip any way you want — I prefer making my own pita chips in the oven, sprinkling them with sea salt or an exotic spice, and placing the chips around the serving bowl. You could serve plain tortilla chips, warm tortillas (burrito style), or any kind of creative dip delivery device. Don’t forget a final pinch of seasoning. For fun — buy a tiny novelty Mexican flag and “plant” it in the dip.
You’ve now created the perfect guacamole dip that you and your friends and loved ones will be begging you to make again.
Food is big business. People spend more on food annually than any other expenses. This includes shopping at the grocery store to eating out. Let’s face it. People love to eat and they love to eat good food. If you have ever considered yourself an exceptional chef, capable of whipping up specialty items, you might consider going into the gourmet food business. But you may not have ever tried to start your own business. You might find yourself in unfamiliar territory and end up wondering how can I start a gourmet food business?
The gourmet food industry is very competitive. Whether you want to open a restaurant or want to package your own product to put on store shelves, you are going to have to work hard to succeed. The plus side is that a successful gourmet business can be very profitable. Eating out has become the number one past-time in the United States. Also, with more media coverage of the food industry (think Paula Deen, Rachel Ray, Emeril, Iron Chef), more and more people want to eat gourmet. If you want to learn how can I start a gourmet food business, then try the steps below.
Decide on What Type Of Gourmet Food
This is the big decision, especially if you like to cook a lot of different things. You need to decide what your product is going to be because that will determine how you go about setting it up. For instance, if you want to open a restaurant, you are going to need to rent a place, hire some help, figure out a menu, and a thousand other decisions. If you want to make a gourmet product to sell at supermarkets or restaurants, then you are going to need a marketing plan, packaging, shipping details, and a lot more. So the type of gourmet business will define how you get your business started.
There are many gourmet food businesses you can try out. You can open a restaurant, own a catering service, offer bartending services, become a wine maker or start a brewery, become a food sculptor, start your own line of specialty sauces, open up a gourmet bakery or deli, start an organic garden, become a personal chef, and create gourmet candies.
Deciding A Gourmet Food Busines Location
Once you have decided on the right gourmet food business for you, the next step is choosing the right location for the gourmet food business. The location is going to be defined by the type of business. In some cases, you can do everything right in your own home. Breweries, wineries, catering services, home bakery, organic gardens; all of these can probably be operated from you house and you can even get a tax break for it. Other types of gourmet businesses will need a separate location. Restaurants, of course, will need the proper space for both customers and kitchen. The same goes for if you want to open a bakery or deli. Space for these businesses can be smaller than a restaurant but you’ll still have to find the right spot.
Gourmet Food Business Equipment
Once you have decided where you are going to conduct your gourmet business, you are next going to need to purchase the right gourmet food business equipment. You may need to get some additional cooking ware, utensils, ingredients, and the like. If your business is catering, you are going to need containers to transport the food in plus a means of transportation. When you are just starting out, you can probably use your own vehicle but as your business grows, you may need a van. Restaurants, delis, and bakeries will need the proper kitchen equipment. Luckily, you can rent most commercial kitchen equipment which is much cheaper than buying it. If your gourmet business is selling packaged goods such as sauces, then you will need packaging containers, labels, boxes for shipping, and maybe even a storage area.
Make Sure You Have The Right Licenses
The food industry is heavily regulated by the U.S. government. Not just anyone can operate a food business. The government wants to make sure that your operation meets with federal health standards. You don’t want people getting sick because your business conditions are dirty and unsanitary. So you have to apply for the right licenses and permits before you can start selling your wares. Go to your local health department and find out what specific health codes you will have to follow for your business.
Get The Word Out
Now that you have everything set up for your new gourmet food business, you need to let people know about it. The way to do this is advertising. Start advertising before you actually open the doors to your business, that way people will be aware of it beforehand and ready to try it out when you open. Try advertising in local newspapers, radio ads, fliers, and even word of mouth. Give out discount coupons for the first 100 customers or include one free product with all orders. Remember, the competition in the industry is fierce so when starting out, you need to do everything possible to get people to try your product. If it is a quality product, then you will already have an edge over the competition.
A gluten-free diet eliminates the protein gluten, a compound found in bread, pasta and other foods. Those with gluten sensitivity or celiac disease, the most severe form of gluten sensitivity, may experience weight gain or weight loss as part of the digestive discomfort and other symptoms associated with gluten sensitivity. Because of this, some people try the diet to see if it helps them to control weight, thereby uncovering an overlooked sensitivity to gluten. Such forays into the diet have resulted in greater demand for gluten-free foods, even though only a tiny portion of the population has celiac disease.
Costs of the Gluten Free Diet
If you are thinking about trying a gluten-free diet, make sure you consider the cost. Gluten free foods are expensive and often difficult to procure. If you do not have a natural foods market nearby, you will need to order food online, adding the cost of shipping to the food. You can lessen the expense by cooking your own gluten-free foods, but this requires a great deal of preparation and care.
Because gluten-free grain flours have different properties, they often must be mixed together to create baked goods. One must also have a thickener like xanthum gum or tapioca starch. In addition, measuring these flours must be precise for recipes to turn out properly. Some bakers even use a kitchen scale and weigh the ingredients to ensure they are using the right amount. Because of the high cost and the careful preparation needed, a gluten free diet is not recommended unless you really need it.
Gluten sensitivity is an autoimmune disorder, causing an immune reaction in the small intestine. Over time, this damages the inner lining of the small intestine, curbing the body’s ability to absorb certain nutrients. For this reason, it is especially important to eliminate gluten from the diets of sensitive children. It is also important for children on gluten-free diets to be sure they get adequate protein to replace the lack of gluten protein in the diet.
The symptoms of gluten sensitivity manifest as frequent digestive imbalances. These can include frequent diarrhea or constipation, weight gain or weight loss or bloating. They may also cause symptoms like fatigue, headaches, bone and joint pain, tooth enamel defects or mouth ulcers. Some people experience a different form of sensitivity affecting the skin called dermatitis herpetiformis. This form of sensitivity results in itchy skin lesions.
Grains that Contain Gluten
Grains containing gluten include wheat, barley, rye, farina, graham flour, semolina, durham, bulgur, kamut, kasha, matzo meal, spelt and triticale. Instead of using flour made from these grains, those on a gluten-free diet can use flour made from rice, soy, corn, millet, sorghum, or teff. Other flours for gluten-free baking are made from the starch of potatoes, tapioca or arrowroot. To provide the proper consistency to dough, other ingredients including, xanthum gum, baking powder and baking soda are also needed.
Some grains do not contain gluten, but are processed on machinery that also processes other gluten-containing grains. For this reason, you should only consume these grains when labeled “gluten-free.” These grains include amaranth, buckwheat, quinoa and oats.
While baked goods obviously can contain gluten, other foods may have eluded your radar screen. Unless of course you have true gluten sensitivity, in which case your stomach will quickly let you know. Some of the more obscure gluten-containing foods include soups, gravies, sauces and salad dressings that are thickened with gluten-containing modified food starch. Beer is made from barley, so it also contains gluten. Other gluten surprises can come in the form of imitation seafood, processed deli meats and self-basting poultry.
Gluten in Medications
Medications and vitamins may use gluten as a binding agent. This is also true for many lip balms and lipsticks, toothpastes, postage stamps and even play dough. Cross contamination from these products can make someone with gluten sensitivity very sick.
Common Gluten Free Foods
Some foods are always okay on gluten-free diet. These include fresh meat, fish and poultry, fruits, vegetables, nuts, rice, potatoes, wine, distilled liquors, cider and spirits. Understand that if any gluten-free foods come coated with breadcrumbs, covered in sauce or marinated, they may not be safe. Baked beans are a good example of a gluten-free food that can be contaminated by gluten in the sauce.
Other foods are usually fine, but you must check the label. For instance, dairy does not contain gluten naturally, but reduced calorie or low-fat items sometimes contain modified food starch as a thickener and replacement for the removed fat. Any product labeled ‘gluten free’ is safe to eat. Be suspicious of labels that say “wheat free” since that does not necessarily mean a food is gluten free.
Once you have a good understanding of which foods to avoid and how to prepare gluten-free meals, it will be easier to maintain the diet.
Wheat, rye and barley all contain a protein called gluten. This protein can cause problems for some people, particular those with gluten intolerance. Some people are so vulnerable to this substance that it can make them very ill and damage the intestines. This severe form of gluten intolerance is called celiac disease.
Some people are switching to a gluten-free diet even without a physician’s diagnosis of gluten intolerance or celiac disease. Those with excessive weight gain, depression or difficulty concentrating may be drawn to the diet since these conditions are similar to a few celiac disease symptoms. When the symptoms go unexplained, many turn to gluten as the culprit. If you are trying to eliminate gluten from your diet, try some of these gluten-free recipes.
Gluten Free Breakfast
Pancakes are a staple of the American breakfast. This recipe can also be used for waffles without modification. This yields ten pancakes.
- 1 cup blended gluten-free flour
- 4 tablespoons dry buttermilk powder
- 1 packet saccharine
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon xanthum gum
- 2 eggs
- 3 tablespoons canola oil
- 2 cups water
Preparation Time: 20 minutes
Cooking Time: 15 Minutes
Sift together the rice and tapioca flours, potato starch, dry buttermilk powder, saccharine, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and xanthum gum. Add eggs, water, and oil and then blended well until few lumps remain.
Cook as with traditional pancakes, on a large well-oiled skillet or griddle at medium-high heat. Ladle batter onto griddle and cook until bubbles form on the surface of the pancakes. Flip pancakes and cook another minute or two until both sides are golden brown. Serve immediately.
Gluten Free Snack
Gluten-free does not mean boring. Here is an easy-to-prepare snack that can be shared with everyone. No one will even know it is gluten-free. If you choose a generic cereal brand, check the ingredients to be sure it is gluten free.
- 8 cups Rice Chex Cereal
- 1/2 cup roasted, salted soybeans or soy nuts
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- 1 tablespoon garlic powder
- 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
- 3-ounce bag popped fat-free butter-flavor microwave popcorn
- 1/3 cup grated Parmesan
Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: Approximately 30 minutes
Pre-heat oven to 300F. Combine cereal and soy nuts in a large bowl.
In another small bowl, combine oil, vinegar, garlic powder and Italian seasoning. Pour liquid ingredients over dry mixture, stirring to coat. Add popcorn and stir until well mixed. Spread mixture onto an ungreased large roasting pan.
Bake uncovered for 15 minutes. Remove from oven and stir in cheese until well mixed. Return to oven and bake another 10 to 15 minutes until mixture is toasted. Cool mixture on wax paper for about 10 minutes. Serve warm or cool.
Gluten Free Lunch
What would lunch be without a sandwich? Here is a gluten-free bread that is great for any lunch. Just be sure to check your meats, cheeses and condiments for gluten before adding them to your sandwich. If you avoid low-fat varieties or imitation meats, you should be okay. Also, watch out for modified food starch, high-fructose corn syrup, wheat and malt flavoring in any condiments you may add. This recipe yields one loaf.
- 1 egg
- 1/3 cup egg whites
- 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- 1/4 cup canola oil
- 1/4 cup honey
- 1 1/2 cups warm skim milk
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon xanthum gum
- 3 cups blended gluten-free flour
- 1 tablespoon active dry yeast
Preparation Time: 1 hour, 15 minutes
Cooking Time: 1 hour
Start with ingredients at room temperature. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
In a mixing bowl, combine the wet ingredients and mix well. Sift together dry ingredients, including active dry yeast. If you make your own gluten-free flour blend, be sure you sift the flours together with a whisk for several minutes. These flours are very fine and must be well blended before the next step of adding to the liquid ingredients.
Set mixer on low speed and gradually add dry ingredients until well blended. Beat approximately 10 minutes. Pour batter into a large 9 x 5” loaf pan. Let the dough rise for about one hour and then bake it for one hour, checking with a toothpick for doneness.
Let the loaf cool for 10 to 15 minutes after baking and then remove it from pan. Let cool completely before slicing.
Gluten Free Dinner
Dinner is a little easier on gluten-free foodies. Most dishes are already gluten-free. But if you want some tasty dinner rolls, you will need to do a little extra work. Here are some excellent cheese biscuits to go with baked chicken or pork chops and a salad. Makes four to six servings.
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 1/3 cup water
- 1/3 cup skim milk
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 cups blended gluten-free flour
- 2 teaspoons minced garlic
- 2/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan
- 2 beaten eggs
Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
Combine olive oil, water, skim milk, and salt in a large saucepan, over high heat. Bring the mixture to a boil and immediately remove from heat. Stir in flour and garlic with a whisk until smooth. Let rest 10 to 15 minutes.
Stir the cheese and egg into the flour mixture. The consistency will be chunky and lumpy. Roll into ¼-cup sized balls and place on ungreased baking sheet. Bake 15 to 20 minutes, until tops are lightly browned.
Gluten Free Dessert
Do not skip desert just because gluten gives you gas. Have some brownies! Here is a recipe sure to please. Makes approximately two dozen brownies.
- 1 cup butter
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 1 1/2 cups granulated white sugar
- 12 oz bittersweet chocolate, chopped
- 2 oz unsweetened chocolate, chopped
- 6 eggs
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 cup blended gluten-free flour
Preparation Time: 20 minutes
Cooking Time: 30 minutes
Preheat oven to 300 degrees F. Line a 9×13” pan with parchment paper.
Melt the butter over medium heat in a saucepan. Add the sugars and whisk together until the butter and sugars form a well-blended mass. Remove from heat and cool for 10 minutes. Add bittersweet and unsweetened chocolates to the mixture and whisk until smooth.
Add eggs, vanilla and salt, then whisk until the mixture is thick and shiny. Add flour and whisk just until lumps are smoothed. Pour mixture into prepared pan to a depth of ¾”.
Bake for 30-35 minutes so the edges appear glossy and firm. Remove and let cool to room temperature. Refrigerate until firm before serving.
Gluten free products are important to anyone with sensitivity to wheat or with the worst form of this disorder, celiac disease. These products are also becoming important for many others who are concerned about potential, less obvious negative effects of wheat consumption.
The best gluten free products come from many sources. Some are major brand names; others are small companies that specialize in gluten free products. In many cases, these products can only be found online, at your local organic grocer or at natural food stores. Here is a range of items like cookbooks, foods and baking ingredients for you to sample.
The biggest name in gluten free products is Betty Crocker. The company makes several baking mixes. Who could resist the ever-popular brownie? Betty Crocker’s Gluten Free Brownie Mix is not thick like many other gluten-free brownie mixes. The batter tastes just like regular brownies. The brownies come out cake-like, spongy and very soft. They even look like regular brownies, although they do not have the same fudgy texture when eaten. While not the super-chocolaty delight you might be craving, this sweet treat is sure to please. Eat them the same day you prepare them, since they go stale easily.
Gluten Free Mama’s Best Baking Recipes is a book that offers easy-to-prepare gluten-free recipes, even for the cooking challenged. It is perfect for the newbie who wants to gain early success cooking gluten free. Because gluten-free baking can be a challenge, this book offers simple recipes with few ingredients. You will find recipes for everyday foods like crackers, pizza crust and flour tortillas.
This cookbook also provides a tutorial on the basics of gluten-free baking such as tips on kitchen organization and the best utensils to have on hand. It will also provide guidance on using yeast and other newbie information. The author also offers spiritual guidance by including quotes from scripture throughout the book.
Making a proper pizza crust takes a lot of time and effort, even without the special preparation needed for gluten sensitivity. The solution is the Bella Monica Flatbread Company’s pizza. The company offers flavors like Spinach & Tomato, Mushroom & Herbs, and Margherita. These frozen pizzas come semi-cooked so you only need to reheat them.
Bella Monica does not skimp on the toppings and one frozen pizza should serve two adults. You can either grill or oven-heat the pizza. If you have never tried grilled pizza before, now is your chance. Grilling makes the crust crunchy on the bottom and gooey in the middle. Oven results are a little less satisfying, but overall these are great pizzas, whether you are sensitive to gluten or not.
Joan’s GF Great Bakes makes gluten free baking products. Their English muffins can be found in the frozen foods section. These products are not dry like other off-the-shelf English muffins. Instead, they are pre-cooked and taken from the oven just before baking is entirely complete.
To eat these muffins, thaw them out and then slice. Brown them in the toaster like any other English muffin. It is hard to tell the difference between these muffins and their gluten-containing counterparts. There is only a mild taste from the rice flour. They hold up well, even in a breakfast sandwich.
Another frozen product for the gluten-free family comes from Amy’s Kids Meals. Amy’s makes several gluten-free products, but some are not gluten-free, so it is important to read the label. The Baked Ziti meal for kids is gluten free, dairy free, organic and vegan; but if you do not tell your kids, they will never know.
The Baked Ziti meal is a microwave dish that only takes three minutes to prepare. The baked ziti comes sprinkled with cheese. It also includes some broccoli with tomato sauce and foccacia bread. It includes apple crisp for desert. If your kids have an issue with foods touching, this may not be the best bet because the foods are not all compartmentalized.
Cereal is another big issue with kids. They eat it every day, so it has to be tasty. The challenge is finding a gluten-free cereal that remains crispy in milk and still tastes good. The solution is EnviroKids by Nature’s Path. This company makes organic, gluten-free cereals like Gorilla Munch, the gluten-free version of Kix. While the individual puffs are a bit larger than Kix, the flavor is great and the texture pleasing. You kids should love it.
Other Gluten-Free Products
Other gluten-free manufacturers like Glutino, KinniKinnick and Ener-G offer a range of products you might enjoy. Glutino offers baked goods like cookies, bagels, breads, snacks and frozen dinners, with one of the best frozen pizzas available. KinniKinnick offers a wide range of baked goods and mixes. They have many baked treats that cannot be distinguished from their gluten-containing partners.
Ener-G is one of the best known kosher, wheat-free, gluten-free, dairy-free, peanut and tree-nut free manufacturers. The selection is huge, consisting of baked goods, milk and egg substitutes, baking ingredients and soups. Of special note is the Gluten-free Gourmet Blend flour, made of white rice flour, potato starch, tapioca starch, a common recipe for the flour used in gluten-free baking. Instead of buying four different flours and mixing yourself, you can get this handy mixture.
People spend much of their time trying to either lose weight or keep the weight off. The best solution is diet and exercise. But come on; no one likes being on a diet. Anyone who has ever been on one knows that they are not easy. Just the thought of all that tasteless food served in small portions is enough to make you want to run to the nearest steakhouse.
That is what people usually think about diet food. Yet who says that diet food has to be bland and taste like styrofoam? You don’t have to be restricted to just a stick of celery or a protein shake that wears off after an hour. There are other diet foods that you can eat that are both filling and healthy. So what are some good diet foods? You need to think about what your body needs and go from there. Basically, your body needs protein, carbs (the good kind), and some fats. Your body also needs fruits and vegetables for proper vitamins and nutrients.
Protein Diet Foods
Despite what some vegetarians claim, the best source of protein is meat. Now this doesn’t mean that you can go out and start stuffing down hamburgers. Too much red meat is not good for you. Sure, you can always choose lean beef which will cut down on some of the fats but we want the best meats for a proper diet, right? For a source of protein without all the fat, fish is the best kind of meat. Fish contains omega-3 fatty acids which is important for a healthy heart, it is full of vitamins, and is a good source for people with diabetes. There is a whole selection of fish to choose from such as tuna, salmon, snapper, trout, flounder, tilapia, and cod. As for other meats, you can eat chicken or turkey without the skin, eggs (egg whites are better), shellfish such as clams, crab, and shrimp, and even lean pork, veal, or lamb (in moderation).
Besides meats, other types of diet food that are a source of protein are milk, cottage cheese, yogurt, beans, nuts, natural peanut butter, sunflower seeds, tofu, and protein bars.
Carbs & Diet
There is not really a cast-in-stone definition of good carbs and bad carbs. Every diet plan is different so it can be hard choosing the right carbs to eat in order to stay in shape. Despite what some self-proclaimed ‘experts’ say, you do need carbs in your diet, particularly if you engage in strenuous exercise like athletes. For some good foods for low-carb diets, you can eat asparagus which is good for vitamin A, berries because they contain antioxidants and can help satisfy a sweet tooth, lettuce and other leafy green foods that make a good salad, tomatoes, zucchini, brown rice, whole grain wheat bread, oatmeal, bran cereals, kidney beans, black beans, pinto beans, and lima beans.
You definitely want to stay away from trans fats. There is nothing good about it. But believe it or not, there are some fats that are good for you. You have already mentioned that fish contains fatty amino acids but there are some other foods you can add to your diet that also includes the same things. For healthy fats, you can use fish oil supplements, peanuts, walnuts, almonds, extra-virgin olive oil, flax seed oil, and sunflower seeds.
Other Diet Foods
There are some items, of course, that don’t quite fit into any of the above categories but would still be appropriate in any number of diet plans. Fruits, for instance, are a staple to any good diet. They are full of vitamins and minerals, provide a healthy dose of fiber, and are low in calories. They can also be a substitute for sweets. You can eat fruit that is fresh, frozen, or dried and they are really good added to yogurt and cereal.
Beverages can sometimes be difficult to figure out. Water is a no-brainer, being the healthiest liquid on the planet, but if you want to add a little taste to it, you can try some no sugar flavor packs such as Crystal Light and Propel. Other good beverage choices are orange juice, V8 juice, green teas, and even a moderate amount of coffee (not the big Starbucks lattes and mochas with a lot of cream). At one time it was believed that a person needed at least a gallon of water a day to remain healthy. However, recent studies have debunked that theory. Sure, it is still good for you but as long as your body stays hydrated with some form of healthy liquid, a gallon is not necessary.
If you are going to have salads and want to add a little extra taste to them, make sure the salad dressing is either light or fat-free. Every style of salad dressing has a light version and they are easy to find in any grocery store. Just don’t drown the salad when you use it.
And finally we come to desserts, the bane of every diet. There are a few fortunate souls out there who do not crave sweets and we curse them everyday. For a healthy diet, you have to either choose low-calorie, fat-free desserts or eat the sinfully sweet stuff in careful moderation. There are a lot of low-calorie dessert recipes you can try or you can look for special low-cal items in the grocery store. Some possible low-calorie dessert choices that you can snack on are Popsicles, graham crackers, wafers, ginger snaps, hard candy, jell-o, and low-calorie diet candy bars. They even make a low-cal ice cream that tastes just like the fully-loaded stuff. Dieting still may not be easy but at least you have some options.
See also: Is the South Beach diet healthy?
There are a lot of diets and lifestyles out there on the market. You can try shakes, protein bars, low carbs, no carbs, veggies only, and teenie-tiny pre-packaged meals (just to name a few). One particular lifestyle that people are trying is the raw food diet.
It is very popular with naturalists who want to make sure their body is clean and free of all the unhealthy things that are sometimes found in foods such as grease, transfats, artificial ingredients, and other chemical enhancements. Advocates of the raw food diet claim that this diet choice lowers the risk of disease and leads to a fuller, healthier life. But what exactly is the raw food diet? What can you eat? Are there any side effects or disadvantages to it? If you want to find out if the raw food diet is for you then keep on reading.
The Raw Food Diet Lifestyle
The raw food diet is not a weight-loss diet. It is a lifestyle choice similar to vegetarianism and is made up of 75% fruits and vegetables. The raw food diet is a diet that promotes the consumption of unprocessed, uncooked, and often organically-grown plant foods such as fresh fruit, vegetables, sprouts, seeds, nuts, grains, beans, and seaweed. The basic principle behind the raw food diet, also sometimes called raw foodism, is that plant foods in their most natural state (i.e.: uncooked and unprocessed) are also the most wholesome for the body. The belief is that by heating food above 116 degrees Fahrenheit, nutrients are destroyed as well as certain enzymes in food that can assist in the digestion. Advocates of the raw food diet also believe that he more raw food you eat, the healthier you will be.
Following the raw food diet is not easy. You don’t just walk into a grocery store, buy a carrot, and start munching (although some raw foodists do this). The diet involves a lot of peeling, chopping, straining, blending, and dehydrating. When you think about it, that is a lot of time spent in the kitchen so advocates of this diet are serious about their health.
What Are Some Of The Advantages?
Followers of the raw food diet believe that by eating raw foods in their natural state, you can have more energy, clearer skin, have a leaner body, improve your digestion, cleanse any impurities from your body, and reduce the risk of heart disease, diabetes, and other chronic illnesses. By sticking to the raw food diet, you are cutting out all trans fats and saturated fats. The diet is also low in sodium but high in potassium, magnesium, and fiber. It is a good way to lose weight, even if it is not advertised as a weight loss program.
What Can You Eat?
So exactly what do followers of the raw food diet eat? All foods should be unprocessed and at least 75 % of it should not be heated over 116 degrees. Some of the staples of the diet include fresh fruits, vegetables, seeds, nuts, seaweed, beans, grains, dried fruit, legumes, freshly juiced fruits and veggies, purified water, unprocessed milk and cheese, honey, raw yogurt, and raw eggs. Although most raw foodists are vegans, there are some that eat raw meat such as fish and carpaccio.
There are many methods to food preparation. Some of them are simple such as fruits and salads. Others require food such as some seeds and nuts to soak overnight before they can be digested. There is also blending, dehydration, and mixing in a food processor.
Anything that is processed is out of the question. Followers of the raw food diet do not consume alcohol, refined sugars, or caffeine in any form. They do not believe in pasteurization, preservatives, or stimulants of any kind.
What Is The Controversy?
There is a tremendous amount of debate about just how healthy the raw food diet is. While advocates of the diet, who are mostly naturalists, claim that it is a much better way to eat, research and studies contradict this. The argument is that by eating raw food, you are at risk of some serious deficiencies. By cooking food, it tenderizes it, reduces water content, and makes the food more pliable of digestion and absorption. If you don’t cook it, then your diet will be deficient in calcium, vitamin B-12, vitamin D, iron, zinc, protein, and calories. Protein and calories are essential in muscle mass and energy. It is also dangerous for people with anemia because the diet does not help with production of red blood cells and it is not recommended for children and women who are pregnant. Also, long term use of the raw food diet can lower your plasma levels which help in the prevention of disease. In short, anyone who follows the raw food diet would do well to add to their diet with calcium and vitamin supplements or risk developing a serious deficiency.
See also: Is the South Beach diet healthy?
Diabetes is a debilitating disease that if not treated properly can take control of your life. If you have diabetes then you will face limitations on what you can eat but that does not mean that you can’t enjoy the foods that you do eat. A proper diet is essential to stay healthy. Diabetics will have to adhere to this special diet or risk having their disease worsen. For some people their previous diet may be the reason they contracted diabetes in the first place. They probably took in too many sugars and saturated fats, didn’t get enough exercise, and let their weight get out of control.
Good Diabetic Diet
One important factor in fighting diabetes is to lose weight. In most cases, a doctor will prescribe a proper diet for the diabetic patient to follow. The diet will be healthy, controlled, and include only the main four food groups. A good diabetic diet will reduce the intake of saturated fats and cholesterol, thus reducing the risk of heart disease which is greater in diabetic patients. But don’t despair. Diabetic diets today are not boring or bland and are much simpler to prepare than they use to be. There are many sources for recipes suitable for diabetics such as books and the internet.
Diabetes Diet Advice
So what are some good diabetic foods? Exactly what can diabetics eat that will not aggravate their disease? When the human body doesn’t produce any insulin, then you have to be very careful. Sugars and starches are what triggers insulin and causes it to spike. A proper diabetic diet should limit or altogether avoid these substances. Below are some groups of foods that are safe and healthy for diabetics along with diabetes diet advice.
Carbohydrates are tricky in a diet suitable for fighting diabetes. During the digestive process carbs are broken down into their simplest form which is sugar. Your glycaemic index measures how quickly the breakdown process takes place and so how fast your blood sugar will rise. A high glycaemic index will cause blood sugar level to raise quickly which is not good for patients of diabetes. Diabetics should avoid carbs with a high glycaemic index. Here are some carbs that are suitable. Diabetics can eat bran, oatmeal, apples, citrus fruits, berries, peaches, pears, avocadoes, beans, broccoli, cabbage, carrots, cucumber, lettuce, mushrooms, olives, peas, spinach, and tomatoes.
Some carb foods that should be avoided are breakfast cereals with lots of sugar, white bread, cake, biscuits, doughnuts, pancakes, white and brown rice, dates, prunes, watermelon, and potatoes.
Protein is important in any diet. It contains vitamins and amino acids which are the building blocks for muscle and bone. Diabetics should make sure to eat several sources of protein. Patients on a vegetarian diet plan don’t have to eat meat. They can get their protein from a variety of vegetables. Some suitable sources for protein are various vegetables like beans, lentils, and soybeans. You can also eat a variety of nuts like Brazil nuts, peanuts, and pine nuts. For meat, fish is always a good source of protein in any diet. Diabetics can also try lean cuts of beef, lamb, pork, and veal. Chicken and turkey is okay as long as the skin is removed and it is not fried.
It is important for diabetics to consume non-saturated fats in order to control their cholesterol level. There are some fats that diabetics can eat which are fine while others can be consumed but only in small portions. For fats that are safe to eat, diabetics can try oils such as vegetable oil, olive oil, sesame oil, soybean oil, and sunflower oil. Fish with high amounts of oil such as salmon, mackerel, tuna, and herring are good sources of fat. Soft margarine that is made with unsaturated fats is okay and diabetics can also eat a variety of nuts such as peanuts and almonds.
For fats that can be consumed but only sparingly, diabetics can drink whole milk (although skim milk is better), and can eat meats such as fatty beef and pork, chicken with the skin on, and roasted duck and turkey. They may also eat eggs, real butter, cream, cheese, full fat yogurt, and ice cream.
And of course, there are fats to be avoided. Anything that has been commercially fried such as chicken, pies, fish, French fries, tater tots, and country steak with gravy.
With restrictions on what to eat, diabetics who are on a prescribed diet should increase their fiber. It helps to lower blood cholesterol levels which in turn can aid in the fight against diabetes. Diabetics can increase their fiber intake by eating more fruit, bran, oats, peas, beans, and other vegetables.
The supermarket shelves have more foods and produce available these days that is suitable for diabetics. You can find many items that have low to no sugar added and products packaged exclusively for restricted diets. They are in almost every aisle from candy, drinks, dessert, and ready-made entrees. This makes shopping much easier than it used to be.
Coffee can be a decadent luxury that is highly addictive. Every coffee connoisseur knows this. There is nothing like the smell or the taste to wake you up and prepare you for the day. And the flavors. There are so many flavors to choose from. It’s not like fifty years ago when you basically had two choices in coffee; black and not so black. Now you have mochas, lattes, cappuccinos, freshly ground, decaf, and a bountiful assortment of flavors. You can get freshly brewed coffee at a lot of different places but the true coffee lover is going to grind and brew their own coffee.
Buying Gourmet Coffee Beans
Why grind it yourself? Because by grinding the beans it provides the freshest and the best taste. Also, if you buy your own coffee beans then you get a better choice of possible flavors. There are many coffee companies on the market that produce gourmet brands of coffee. These companies offer superior quality of beans with a better taste. They are also more expensive. Buying gourmet coffee beans is not cheap and can cost much more than pre-packaged ground coffee.
Wholesale Coffee Beans Websites
You can buy gourmet beans at any major supermarket chain but you will pay the full retail price for them. But don’t despair. You can buy coffee beans direct and at a cheaper price. There are some store chains, wholesale foods, and websites that offer coffee beans. So if you are asking yourself how do I get coffee beans direct at the best price, you can try some of the wholesale coffee beans websites listed below.
The bulk offspring to Wal-Mart, Sam’s Club members can save a little money by purchasing large quantities of just about any item. The merits of buying a 5 gallon bucket of salad dressing are debatable but you cannot deny that the unit price for such an item is cheaper than that of a small bottle. Sam’s Club carries a variety of coffee beans and you can buy them in large quantities. You can buy up to a 40 oz. bag of beans. You don’t even have to worry about all those beans going bad. Fresh coffee beans last longer than ground coffee. All you have to do is store them in a dry area and only use enough beans for each day. If there is not a Sam’s Club near you, you can go online to their website and order the bens that you need.
Amazon.com is not just a great place to buy music and books. You can also buy great coffee from them. They have very wide a selection of gourmet brands that come in a variety of sizes. You can buy the beans in quantities of 12 ounces, 16 ounces, and one pound, two pound, or even five pound bags. You can even get them in a package deal that will save you a few extra bucks. One of the best things about Amazon is their fast shipping and if you order enough quantity, the shipping is free.
Coffee Bean Direct
Coffee Bean Direct is a website devoted entirely to ordering coffee beans at some of the best prices on the internet. They offer free shipping on orders that are over 25 pounds. All of their coffees are sold in two sizes. You can get any bean in either a five pound or 25 pound bag. They do offer some beans in one pound bags but that selection is rotated out every month so you have to check to see what is available. Coffee bean Direct has a good variety of beans such as single-origin regular coffees, coffee blends, flavored coffees, and fair trade/organic coffees. Not only that, but you can choose the type of roast for your coffee beans. They have light roast, city roast, French roast, and Italian roast.
This website carries a variety of coffee beans that if you are interested in large bulk, they have some great prices. For instance, you can buy a 40 pound bag of Hawaiian Kona Fancy for $66. Normally that much runs around $120 retail. GourmetCoffee2You advertises coffee from around the world. They have selections such as Kona from Hawaii, Kopi Luwak from Sumatra, Jamaican Blue Mountain, Ethiopian Yirgacheffe, Costa Rican Tarrazu, and many others. These are definitely some exotics which are pricier than many other gourmet brands. However, if you are into those types of coffees, this site has some really good discounts.
This site is really more for coffee shop owners and the like but if you are really into buying bulk, you can get some great coffee from here. The site is for the California Coffee Growers and they have a really big selection of exotics, blends, organic coffees, and flavored coffees. They offer their customers many options such as customization, fast and free shipping, bulk discounts, and no minimum order.
Coffee is a delicious and often required way to wake up in the morning. There is nothing like the aroma, the taste, and the feel of that warm cup to get you going. You can get coffee just about anywhere and it comes in a wide variety of flavors and forms. There are a lot of coffee makers in the industry but one brand that has risen to popularity is Green Mountain Coffee.
Green Mountain Coffee is based in Vermont and is one of the leading producers of specialty coffees in the U.S. They are very eco-friendly and promote recycling and environmental awareness. They also have some really great coffees. Their products include their signature blends such as Mountain Blueberry, Caramel Vanilla Cream, Southern Pecan, Chocolate Raspberry Truffle, and many more. There are also some seasonal blends that are appropriate for enjoying throughout the different seasons. Overall, Green Mountain Coffee has some great choices. But the big question is this: how can I buy Green Mountain Coffee? Where is it available? For some of the best places to find Green Mountain Coffee, check it out below.
Buying Green Mountain Coffee Direct
If you’re interested in buying Green Mountain Coffee direct the obvious place look at first is their website. It is divided up for easy navigation and they have their own shopping cart so it is very convenient to shop and buy. They have all of their signature and seasonal blends listed. They also have several flavors in the popular K-cups for easy brewing along with grinders, brewers, cups, and other kitchen accessories. Green Mountain has also partnered with Newman’s Own to produce some organic coffees. Since this is a website, you can go on there and order at any time.
Buy It Online
You can also buy Green Mountain Coffee at other websites such as online grocers. Amazon.com offers a range of flavors and K-cups. You can even buy in bulk cheaper than you can get it at a coffee house. There are a few other online places that specialize in organics that might sell green Mountain brands, especially the K-cups.
Buy It At The Supermarket
Green Mountain Coffee is carried in many supermarket chains around the country. You can look for them in the coffee aisle or if the supermarket has an organic section, they might even have a couple of shelves there. The negative about buying in a supermarket is that shelf space is notoriously limited and you probably won’t find a wide variety of flavors. The bonus, however, is that most stores carry grinders. You can purchase the coffee beans and grind them right there.
Look For It In Coffee Shops And Other Spots
Green Mountain Coffee sells wholesale to other vendors so you might also find it being served in some coffee houses, particularly those that deal in specialty coffees. Some McDonalds restaurants have replaced their old coffee and has started to carry Green Mountain brands. You can always call around to the various shops around town and ask what brands they have. You will definitely pay more for a cup there than if you brewed it yourself but if you are on the go and in a hurry, convenience is worth the price.
Brain foods consist mainly of fruits and vegetables containing nutrients that are good for brain function. The brain is a complex organ that has special nutritional needs. The good news is that the same foods that are good for the brain are also good for the rest of your body.
Unlike the rest of the body, however, the brain needs excessive amounts of energy to run properly but has no local energy stores. Instead, the brain depends on the body to deliver a steady stream of glucose from the foods we eat. Only in situations of very severe deprivation will the brain use fat energy to function.
The brain needs energy to control myriad functions in the body. It works by transmitting electrical impulses from one neuron to the next, like a line of firefighters once did, passing the water bucket down the line. As they pass on signals, the nerve cells in the brain need certain nutrients and neurotransmitters to complete the exchange.
The three most important neurotransmitters are acetylcholine, dopamine and serotonin. You are probably familiar with the later two brain chemicals. Dopamine makes us feel excited, maintain focus and keep our balance. Low levels of this chemical is associated with schizophrenia. Serotonin helps to balance our moods, keep healthy sleep patterns and feel pleasure. Depression is often attributed to low levels of serotonin.
The lesser-known acetylcholine is responsible for boosting memory, controlling involuntary muscles, and behavioral inhibition. Because those with Alzheimer’s often have low levels of this chemical, they are more prone to forgetfulness and inappropriate behavior.
The brain cannot produce acetylcholine without the B-vitamin called choline. This vital nutrient is found in protein-rich foods like egg yolks, wheat germ, peanuts, meat (especially liver), fish and dairy. You can also find it in some vegetables like broccoli, cabbage and cauliflower. With proper amounts of choline in your diet, you can boost your memory, alertness and reaction time. It may even improve your athletic performance allowing you to run further faster.
Foods for Better Brain Function
The same foods that provide choline are often rich sources of dopamine as well. These include meat, milk products, fish, and nuts. Beans and soy products are also good sources of dopamine. Eating 3-4 ounces of protein each day should provide sufficient amounts to keep your brain running well.
Serotonin on the other hand, comes from carbohydrate-rich foods like pasta, cereal, bread and starchy vegetables. The carbohydrates in these foods help the body absorb tryptophan and convert it into serotonin. This is why you often feel calm and relaxed about 30 minutes after eating a spaghetti dinner. These carbohydrates also help produce the glucose need by the brain for optimal functioning.
Not just what you Eat…
How you manage your carbohydrates can also affects your brain. By eating small frequent meals, you provide a steady stream of energy to the brain. This prevents mood swings and reduces bodily stress, both of which can affect your thinking. Complex carbohydrates are preferable because they provide a slow and steady stream of energy. They come from whole grain foods, often high in fiber. Simple carbohydrates like sugar and white bread can boost brain performance temporarily, but the resulting “crash” or drop in energy will later result in moodiness and unclear thinking.
Other Helpful Nutrients
Other nutrients that help your brain include Omega 3 and 6 fatty acids, antioxidants, folate and happily, moderate alcohol consumption. Each of these nutrients works in a different way.
Omega 3 and 6 fatty acids are the “healthy fats” you may have heard about. They are good for your heart, your blood pressure and your brain. They are powerful nutrients that help protect brain tissues and promote healthy brain cell generation. Because the brain is more than 60% fatty cells, eating the enough fats is crucial. These fatty acids are found primarily in salmon, walnuts and flax seed. If you are not partial to salmon, you can try tuna, trout, herring, mackerel or anchovies.
Antioxidants help your brain by fighting free radicals. These damaging elements are the natural result of metabolism. Free radicals bounce around your system, striking health cells and turning them into more free radicals. Without antioxidants, the damage done by this process can lead to premature aging throughout the body and brain. You can find the maximum concentrations of these important nutrients in very dark chocolate, blueberries, strawberries and citrus fruits.
Like choline, folate is a B-vitamin, essential to proper brain function. This same nutrient helped form your spinal cord while you grew in your mother’s womb. Insufficient folate during fetal development can lead to spinal bifida, a condition where the spinal cord fails to develop completely. AS an adult, folate is important for reducing the risk of stroke and breaking down homocysteine, an amino acid that damages nerve cells.
Studies on those who drink one or two alcoholic beverages a day show that the practice increases blood flow to the brain resulting in a healthier heart and a brain less susceptible to cognitive decline. In the short run, alcohol will slow your thinking. In the end, it will keep you thinking clearly, assuming the absence of health conditions adversely affected by alcohol. For example, women with increased risk of breast cancer may worsen the risk if they consume alcohol. In most cases, the benefit should outweigh the risk.
You should understand that each of us has a unique chemical makeup in our brains. For this reason, some foods may affect your brain performance differently than expected. It is best to eat a well-rounded diet and pay attention to how certain foods make you feel about one half hour after eating them. You should also be certain to get enough sleep and nap during the day if you can.
Maybe you want to know how to make beer because you have a fussy palette. Maybe you just want to try out a new hobby. Whatever the reason, making beer requires some planning and preparation. It also requires some special equipment and a little patience.
Choosing a Home Brew Kit
There are kits available for new brewers that will make the job much easier. Starter kits can range from an economical $80 or so to around $450 dollars. The high-end starter kits include everything you need, except the ingredients and bottles to put the beer in. However, most starter kits will require that you also by a brewing kettle with at least a three gallon capacity.
Basic starter kits include a 6 gallon plastic food-grade bucket for fermenting. The buckets are not entirely airtight and you cannot see through the plastic to observe the fermentation process. You may want to try a more advanced kit, with a clear six-gallon carboy instead of the plastic bucket. The carboy lets you see the fermentation as it is happening, cutting down on guesswork.
Basic kits usually only allow for single-stage fermentation, where the beer is bottled after a very short aging period. By getting a more advanced kit, you can easily upgrade to two-stage brewing once you get the hang of things, by simply adding a second carboy. These kits include the additional hardware needed for the carboy as well.
While expensive, deluxe kits have many advantages. If you are a true beer lover and know that you will stick to the hobby, then this is the kit for you. Deluxe kits allow for two-stage fermentation. There is a primary six-gallon carboy and a secondary five-gallon carboy included. The second carboy allows you to age the beer for several months if you wish. With some beers, such as stronger ales or mead require two-stage fermentation for extended aging.
Deluxe kits will also give you a few extras that are fun to have. The test jar is larger, allowing for more accurate hydrometer readings. The carboys have two “Fermometers” so you can monitor the temperature more closely.
Making Your First Beer
Beer-making requires a recipe and each recipe will require things to be done a little differently. However there are some basic steps to all beer making. You can buy a recipe kit that has all the ingredients you need or you can buy the ingredients individually from a beer making supply store according to the recipe you have. First-time brewers are better off starting with an ingredient kit. Before we begin, it is important to discuss the importance of cleanliness, preparation and record keeping in brewing.
Keeping the equipment clean and sanitized should be your top priority. Fermenting involves the use of live yeast. These same conditions that encourage yeast growth also help dangerous bacteria to grow. For this reason, it is vital that you sanitize the equipment just before brewing. Use a solution of 1 Tablespoon bleach to 1 gallon water. Immerse all of your brewing equipment, anything that will contact the beer, in the solution. Rinse the equipment after soaking to prevent any affect on the flavor of the beer.
Have everything you will need, including ice, ready ahead of time. Keep a notebook handy so you can write down each step in the process, the ingredients you used and how much. This will help you make better beer next time.
How to Make Beer
The first step in brewing is to prepare the yeast. Liquid yeast is preferable for new brewers. It provides less risk of bacterial contamination, which is always a concern in brewing. Before adding the yeast to the wort (pitching), you should start the yeast. This means keeping it at 80F for two days before you begin the brew. The day before you brew, pitch the yeast to a wart starter of ¼ cup dry malt extract and 1 pint water that has been boiled and then cooled to 75F. You may also wish to add ¼ teaspoon of yeast nutrient. Allow the mixture to sit in a warm place until you are ready to brew.
In brewing, mix the ingredients and bring them to a boil. The boiled mixture is called wort. You will need a large stainless steel pot that can hold at least three gallons. Get the biggest pot you can afford and use only aluminum, stainless steel or ceramic-coated steel. Stir the wort with a food-grade plastic stirring paddle.
After boiling, you must cool the wort to a specific temperature to allow for fermentation. The thermometer must have a temperature range of 40F to 150F. You must cool the wort quickly to below 80F in order to prevent bacteria from growing. Most brewers will do this by setting the pot into an ice bath for about 20 minutes. After cooling, the wort is transferred to a fermenter where yeast is added. Fermentation takes place in a six-gallon bucket or carboy.
To ensure that the yeast can make proper use of oxygen in fermenting the beer, you should aerate the wort immediately after cooling. Do this most easily by shaking the container or by allowing the wort to splash about when you pour it into the fermenter. Aerating helps the yeast get the oxygen they need to grow and transform sugars into alcohol.
After fermenting, you will have raw beer. You can use a siphon, but a bottling bucket is often easier. By racking beer into the bottling bucket, you get a clearer beer. These buckets also have spigots that you can use instead of a siphon hose. The makes bottling much easier. Brewers should add a little sugar while bottling to help with carbonation.
Clean the equipment as soon as possible after brewing to avoid the yeast sediment and other ingredients solidifying and sticking to the equipment. Keep a large pot of bleach/water solution handy and throw the equipment into it as you finish each step in the process.
First time brewers may want to use bottled water instead of tap water. There can be many issues with tap water, like added chlorine or excessive minerals that will affect the taste of the beer. By using bottled water, you will be cutting down on the things that can go wrong with your first brew.
As you gain skill in brewing, you may want to try out recipes by buying individual ingredients. The taste of beer can be greatly affected by the types of year, malt and hops that you use.
How Do You Find the Best Pizza Places?
I recently moved to a new town and discovered what millions of people already know — it is damn hard to “discover” the best pizza places in a new town. That first day, after you’ve unloaded the moving truck, met the neighbors, and struggled to setup your wireless connection, nothing goes down like a couple bottles of your favorite beer and a good pizza.
Finding out where the best pizza in a given town is does not have to be the struggle it once was. Here’s three easy steps to finding the best pizza in any town in the country.
Step One: Selecting a Pizza Target
Before you go running willy-nilly for the phone book to look up the nearest chain pizza shop, stop and ask yourself if you really want to have another same-old same-old Pizza Hut experience. You’re in a new town — why not try out what the locals have to offer? I guarantee you there is better pizza than Domino’s to be had in any town, no matter the size.
To help you figure out who to call for a pie, decide if you want a particular style of pizza (deep dish, thin crust, etc) or if there is a particular flavor that you like. Eating a “white pizza” at three different pizza joints means eating three different “white pizzas”, but if it is a flavor you like, it is a safe flavor to try out in your new environment.
Wrapping your head around exactly what kind of pizza you want is your first step.
Step Two: Read Online Reviews
Used to be you had to spend a bit of time asking around at the bars and in your neighborhood to get a feel for how much people like a given restaurant in your area. Now that everyone (and I mean everyone) is on the Internet, you can access all kinds of restaurant review website to get a handle on how the people in your new town feel about certain eateries. Since pizza is so popular across all classes and ethnicities, you can bet there will be plenty of online reviews for the pizza places you’re considering.
Online reviews are trustworthy for the most part. Yes, it is true that some people only go online to review based on a negative experience (skewing the results in a generally negative direction) and yes some restaurant owners will “spam” a rival restaurant’s comments sections trying to ruin business, but for the most part online reviews are honest.
Check out sites like Yelp or the reviews posted to Google.
Step Three: Dig In
Quit worrying about your decision and order a pizza. Remember the place you ordered from and rate your pizza experience after you’re done eating. Didn’t like the crust? Try a different one next time. Didn’t like the price or the delivery time or something like that? Move on to the next pizza place next time. Remember — pizza is delicious and (yes) maybe even a little bit of fun, so what’s the risk in trying out a new pizzeria?
Subway Coupons, Promotions, and Discounts in 2011
Subway has over 22,000 franchises nationwide, so you can use your Subway coupons and coupon codes in just about any town in America. If you lay off too much of their non-fat sauces, Subway is a healthy way to eat fast. Once again, avoid the Creamy Italian dressing, which is my favorite.
Subway used to offer good, cheap sandwiches, but prices have risen over the past 10 to 15 years for Jared’s favorite fast-food chain. These days, a 12-inch sub, chips, and a fountain drink are going to cost you $8 to $9 at Subway. To get the price down to a more affordable level, you either have to cut down to a six-inch sub (healthier, anyway) or find you some good Subway coupons.
Since cutting down your caloric intake is your decision, let me talk about where to find printable coupons and promo codes for your next trip to Subway. Below are several options.
Coupon Cabin Subway Coupons and Discounts
I wanted to point out another coupon website or two today, so let’s take a look at the Coupon Cabin Subway coupons page. As I mentioned earlier, Subway offers a lot of its own coupons, so you’ll see a lot of replication on the CouponCabin and other coupon web addresses.
Coupons being offered at the moment include a free foot-long (Buy 1, Get 1 Free), a free cookie, and a discount for “Montpellier” alone. You’ll find a lot of repetition of the “buy one, get one free” deal, but that’s a good coupon to walk into the store with. Even if you don’t have a friend to share the expense with you, buy a second sandwich without a lot of dressing on it and save the sub for lunch tomorrow.
Dealcatcher Subway Coupons & Promotions
Dealcatcher has a number of variant coupon codes that might help. They link to a promotion for a free coffee on Monday (may have expired in many locations), along with a free $2 gift card for filling out a Subway survey (but only in California Subway Restaurants). Another option is the Subway free cookies or soup promotion. This means you get either an appetizer or a dessert item for free, with a coupon code you can activate online.
Retail Me Not Subway Discounts & Coupons
Okay, I said I was going to stay away from RetailMeNot, but they always have discounts you don’t find elsewhere, so I had to look. At the Retail Me Not Subway bargains page, you get a free 6-inch sub with the purchase of a 6-inch submarine sandwich and a medium drink. There’s also a not-very-successful coupon code to acquire scratch-and-win cards, the requisite free cookie printable coupon, and a free 21-ounce drink coupon code.
Subway.com Subway Monthly Coupons and Promotions 2011
Subway has its own monthly promotions and discounts, so you should check the Subway official website at least once a month to see what the latest promotion is. This month, all regular footlong are $5 footlongs, including the turkey breast footlong, the Chicken and Bacon Ranch footlong, and the Italian B.M.T. football on flatbread. There was a time when all Subway footlongs were under $5, but those days are long past, except for the rest of this calender month.
Subway FRESHBUZZ is an online club for regular Subway customers who want to hear automatically about the latest Subway features and promotions. You won’t need to give credit card information, though you need to input a valid and current email address to receive alerts. Also, you can opt to put in your mobile number, so you receive alerts to your cell phone.
This is an optional program, and I’m not suggesting you take that option. But the link is there, in case you want up-to-the-minute Subways promotional news.
- Printable Blimpie Coupons
- Free McDonalds Coupons
- Online Coupons for Arby’s
- 2011 Sonic Discounts Online
- Quizno’s Discounts and Coupons 2011
- Edible Arrangements Discounts and Coupons 2011
- Printable Melting Pot Coupons
What’s a healthy diet that works?
There are plenty of diets that different experts consider “healthy” — whether or not a diet works is mostly up to you.
Here’s a short list of “healthy diets” that people have success losing weight with.
Foods: certain fruits and vegetables; whole grains such as oats, barley, and bran; basmati rice; some pasta; quinoa; chick peas; plain yogurt; and skim milk
Foods: brown rice; soy-bean products; local fruits and vegetables; beans, seeds and nuts in moderation; fish in moderation.
Foods: pesticide-free fruits and vegetables; whole grains; free-range eggs, chicken and beef; hormone-free milk
Foods: sushi, fruits and vegetables, nuts, seared fish and meat
Foods: lean protein, feta cheese, almonds, bell peppers, blueberries, broccoli, grapes, olive oil, spinach, strawberries, tomatoes, whole grains and wine
Foods: cereal with skim milk, Jenny Craig-style chicken fettuccine, fruit, vegetables, Jenny Craig-style Pumpkin soup
Foods: Nutrisystem-style apple-cinnamon oatmeal, cream of broccoli soup, beef tacos, whipped sweet potatoes with cheese
South Beach Diet
Foods: Phase 1: vegetables, eggs, cheese, nuts, beef, fish; Phase 2: reintroduce bread, cereal and potatoes
Foods: Meals based ratio of carbohydrates (40%), fat (30%) and proteins (30%).
Foods: Depends which plan you use
If you want to lose a lot of weight and do it in a healthy way, the only diet that fits the bill completely is simple Caloric Reduction.
What is Caloric Reduction?
A study published in the Journal of Nutrition as well as the New York Times indicates that the Caloric Reduction diet increases the lifespan of test primates by about 1/8th.
This diet is based on a simple principle — that eating fewer calories while maintaining adequate nutrition and an active lifestyle will increase the quality and length of your life.
How do you go about eating healthy while reducing calories? Here’s a few tips.
Before worrying about how many calories you’re eating, make sure that the foods in your diet provide sufficient nutrition to avoid malnutrition once you begin to restrict them.
Avoid simple sugars and flours.
Sugars and flours generally are basically useless nutritionally, containing very little “good stuff” for their high calorie content. Besides high calories, these foods have a high glycemic index, meaning your body absorbs them quickly. This makes you hungry for more soon.
Eat both green leafy (salad) and other vegetables.
Vegetables — both the green leafy variety and many non-leaf vegetables — contain a super high amount of nutrients for their calorie cost. Vegetables are the major component of many calorie restricted but not nutrient deficient diets, meaning you can eat less calories but stay well nourished.
Carefully choose your proteins and fats
It is true that protein and fat are required macronutrients, but the form they take can have a seious impact on a person’s risk factors for diseases like high blood pressure, heart disease, stroke, and other serious life threatening illnesses.
Make sure your protein intake is good enough, but not overdone
Doctor’s recommendations for total protein intake are between 0.6 to 0.8 grams per kilogram of body weight. While this is probably a minimum for active humans, a minimum may be all you need to stay nourished while avoiding high calorie counts.
Eat complete and balanced proteins.
What is a complete protein? It is a gathering of all nine essential amino acids. A balanced protein contains all those amino acids in the proper ratios to power our human physiology. Many animal proteins are both complete and well-balanced, making small amounts of these proteins ideal for caloric reduction.
Non-animal proteins can become balanced by combining them in the right “food families”
The basic idea here is to combine certain beans with certain grains to produce a nourishing and balanced protein — and protein from rice can work together with protein content in veggies like broccoli or spinach. Be aware, that grains and rices have a high glycemic index much like white flour and offer very little in the way of food density. Long grain brown rice is best to avoid this high glycemic index problem.
Eat more monounsaturated fats and Omega-3 fats
Foods containing monounsaturated fats are olive oil, hazelnuts, almonds, avocados, and other delicious treats.. The majority of your fat intake should be from foods like these. You should also eat an amount of fat in the form of Omega-3 fatty acids, which are found in delicious and fatty fish like salmon as well as the supplement flax oil.
Papa Johns Coupons
When you have to order pizza from a chain, why not order from the chain that’s won the most national awards? Picked time and again as “best pizza” by organizations like the Restaurants & Institutions Consumers’ Choice awards, Papa Johns has always taken pride in the fact that they use better ingredients than their competition. It’s right there in their slogan: “Better ingredients, better pizza.”
There are more than 2,600 Papa Johns restaurants in America and another 1,000 or so in countries around the world. What started as a single pizza joint in Kentucky in the 80s has become the third-largest pizza delivery chain in the world. They may be only the third-largest, but they’re the fastest growing chain, and people who take pizza seriously tend to prefer Papa Johns more authentic flavor. Papa Johns is famous for using fresh ingredients and for giving every customer a garlic and oil dipping sauce as well as a real pepperoncini pepper with every pie.
Online Papa Johns Coupons 2011
Who orders pizza without a coupon these days? There’s no reason to pay full price for your next Papa Johns pizza experience. There are more places to find Papa Johns coupons than you can shake a breadstick at.
Start your search for online Papa Johns coupons at the company’s website. The best coupons and the latest deals are always displayed prominently on the front page. Special offers change regularly, but usually include things like “any large pizza for $10″ or “wings for $6″. Very rarely you’ll find a “buy one get one” type of offer, but most of the coupons and deals you find on the Papa Johns website are more like “percent off” or “dollars off” coupons.
If you don’t find what you want at the website, search your favorite third-party coupon hunting site. RetailMeNot has a Papa Johns page–there are three “active coupons” posted there right now, including one for two medium two-topping pizzas for under $15.
Other third-party coupon sites are pushing other deals. 8coupons.com is a great coupon gathering site because it uses your local address to find deals specific to your area. Search that site for Papa Johns deals at your local store.
Other Papa Johns Deals
If you sign up for Papa John’s email updates, you can have coupons and promo deals emailed directly to your inbox. You sign up for free at the website, and you’ll get monthly emails with store opening news, new promos, and occasionally a printable coupon.
For more Papa Johns interaction, follow their Facebook page. They’re constantly updating with new promos and deals, and even offering exclusive coupons for their Facebook fans.
The last place to dig around for Papa Johns coupons is your mailbox and newspaper. Since Papa Johns is a huge international chain of restaurants, they have a coupon policy intended to draw in business. They place these ads in your newspaper’s ad circular and in direct mail campaigns. These are traditional “pizza delivery coupons”, offering everything from free food to special large-order discounts.
Papa Johns is one of the most popular pizza joints in the country, and while it doesn’t always stack up against your local hole-in-the-wall pizzeria, it is considered the “best” chain pizza in the country by people who know best.
Medifast is a five-step meal replacement diet plan recommended by doctors and nutritionists for a wide range of health concerns. Because Medifast Meals are low in fat content and are created to meet low glycemic index requirements, they are not just safe for people with type 2 diabetes, they are often used by physicians to help treat diabetic patients. Medifast Meals come in gluten-free varieties and a few other special meal plans to meet patient’s weight loss and health needs. Special Medifast Meal plans exist for vegetarians, diabetics, Medifast Meals for teens, seniors, nursing mothers, even people suffering from gout and those losing weight in preparation for weight-loss surgery.
Medifast Food Reviews
Replacement meal programs can be difficult to follow because the food isn’t satisfying. If
you can’t stand the taste of the food or if the meal plans aren’t filling enough, you’re less likely to follow the diet plan.
Online Medifast food reviews are helpful if you’re trying to figure out whether or not to start the Medifast plan. I started researching Medifast when it came time to lose thirty pounds I’d gained “sympathetically” after my wife’s pregnancy. I actually gained more weight than my wife did, and she had a baby. I knew it was time to take some action, but I was suspicious of the quality of Medifast food.
What I found was that the Medifast food gets its share of cheers and jeers. As a person who tries to eat as little meat as possible, I was mostly interested in the quality of the vegetarian meals and entrees with little or no meat. Luckily, there are tons of people sharing their Medifast experience online on blogs and personal websites. The first blog that caught my eye was called Escape from Obesity. Though I’m far from obese, I was interested in seeing what someone working on long-term weight loss thought of the Medifast food.
The Medifast food reviews I found at this blog were honest and extremely detailed. I learned how this particular dieter would make small changes to the food to make them more edible without really throwing off the nutritional value, like adding torn spinach leaves to the powdered scrambled eggs. She also talked about how to properly prepare Medifast’s powdered foods: simply mixing them with water and letting them sit in the fridge for twenty minutes made a huge difference in the texture of the meals.
If you’re unsure about starting a meal replacement plan, look around for Medifast food reviews. You may be surprised at people’s honesty and the quality of the diet food available through Medifast.
Negative Medifast Reviews
I don’t want to make it sound like everyone loves Medifast food. I have run into my share of real stinkers, especially the oatmeal that Medifast offers. Negative Medifast reviews make up about 50% of the total food and diet plan reviews online. The key for me was to find what food I liked, what foods I hated, and tailor my Medifast orders to those conditions.
Negative Medifast reviews all sound very similar. Many people complain about the overly sugary taste of Medifast’s shakes. Since the shakes are a major part of many Medifast dieter’s plans, not enjoying the experience puts a big dent in your Medifast plans. I personally found the shakes far too sweet-tasting to drink, and found myself heading more towards the crunch bars in between meals or as meal replacements.
When you read negative Medifast reviews, remember that what’s nasty to one person may be palatable or even delicious to another. Even though I try to avoid meaty meals, I really love the Medifast version of Beef Vegetable Stew. What other reviewers found to be little more than “gravy with chunks” I liked as a hot soup for cold winter lunches. As long as I put the soup in a thermos and didn’t look at it too much, it reminded me of the beef broth I used to drink when I had a sore throat.
Medifast Reviews 2011
Since Medifast is constantly changing their meal plans and tweaking their food, it is important to read Medifast reviews 2011. Reading outdated reviews will get you nothing but an outdated idea of how the Medifast plan works. It’s easy to read updated reviews–just type “Medifast reviews 2011″ into Google and click away.
2011 Medifast reviews differ from older reviews of the plan in that there’s a ton of new Medifast food and slightly altered Medifast food to choose from. People love the new Medifast pancakes, a menu item that Medifast didn’t even carry until this past year. There are even chocolate chip pancakes on the Medifast plan.
2011 Medifast reviews also mention that the recipe for the popular Medifast 55 shakes has changed slightly. It may be time for this dieter to try these shakes again, since reviewers claim that the overly sweet recipe has been altered to be more palatable.
2011 Medifast reviews keep you up-to-date with the latest in Medifast food and Medifast diet support. Reading old information will give you the wrong idea about the Medifast plan and menu items.
My Medifast Results
The results I’ve seen from the Medifast plan are encouraging. I’m not going to go overboard and say that I’ve had Medifast results worth writing home about–the plan is difficult to get used to, especially in the first couple of weeks, and I’ve had trouble finding meals that I don’t get burned out on or just plain hate.
Medifast claims some outstanding results are possible if you follow the five-step plan and eat a proper diet based on their Medifast Meals. With food items ranging from 90 to 100 calories, Medifast says that dieters stand to lose about 2 pounds a week. This is a realistic goal for weight loss–where other diet plans claim ridiculous weight loss goals as high as 9 or 10 pounds a week, which is physically impossible, Medifast promises nothing. Losing 2 pounds of week is a healthy way to shed unwanted pounds.
My personal Medifast results fell right in line with this promise. I stumbled a lot in my first two weeks, probably due to the difference in my caloric intake and the little bit of gas that the Medifast eggs gave me, but as my body got used to the food and the reduced calories, I found myself losing first four pounds, then three pounds, then a stead two pounds a week up to this point. I’m on week eleven and I’ve lost 23 total pounds, just a few shy of my goal of 30 pounds of weight loss.
What Are Fat Replacement Products?
You’re probably more familiar with fat replacement products than you think. Any time you drink low-fat milk (1%, 2%, etc.) you are consuming a fat replacement product of some kind. In low-fat milk, fat replacement products are inserted to take the place of the fat that is removed. Without something to replace the fat that is taken out, the milk would have a strange consistency, mouth-feel, and taste.
Fat replacement products, also known as fat replacers, can take the place of carbohydrates, proteins, or fat based, not just fat. The only requirement is that they provide fewer than 9 calories per gram–the amount of calories that dietary fat provides.
Fat replacement products work by replacing some or all of the functions of fat in a food product without providing the same “energy” that fat would provide. Remember that a calorie is a measure of a food’s energy potential. The idea behind using a fat replacement product is to allow a food to taste, look, smell, and feel the same as it would without the highly caloric fat.
Fat Replacement Product Regulations
For something to be legally declared a “fat replacer,” it has to fulfill a few requirements.
1. Fat replacers should contribute little or no caloric energy to the food product it is added to.
2. Fat replacers must be non-toxic, easily digestible, and able to be excreted by the human body.
3. Fat replacers must not rob the body of precious fat soluble vitamins, as some fat replacement products tend to do.
Fat Replacement Product Dangers
The body needs to absorb vitamins, and many vitamins are fat-soluble. Basically, this means that they require fat to be absorbed by the human body. If you are using lots of fat replacement products, your body may not be able to absorb as many vitamins. People who eat lots of food products that contain high levels of fat replacement products tend to be vitamin-deficient. That’s why it is not a good idea to eat a large number of foods that are 0% fat. Consider drinking whole milk one or two days a week instead of skim milk seven days a week, for instance.
Fat Replacement Flavor
All fat replacers should contribute some from of flavor or taste to a food product. This isn’t a legal requirement, but one imposed by food producers. Think about it this way–you could add styrofoam to a food and take away much of its fat content, but the food wouldn’t taste very good. Fat replacement products should still be palatable.
Fat Replacement Stability
When food producers use the word “stable,” they are referring an ingredient’s ability to maintain a constant temperature and moisture level. Many failed fat replacement products didn’t work because they weren’t stable and could impact the appearance, texture, or taste of a food after even a brief period of storage. The word “stable” when used to describe fat replacement products also refers to their ability to withstand high or low temperatures for foods that are meant to be baked, microwaved, frozen, or refrigerated.
Peru Desserts – Peruvian Dessert Recipes
Desserts were introduced to Peru by Spanish Conquistadors in the 16th century. That isn’t to say that the native people of Peru never ate sweets or “after-dinner treats” . . . just that what we think of today as Peruvian desserts are heavily influenced by European sweet confections.
Here’s a list of awesome Peruvian desserts, along with a few short recipes.
Huevo Chimbo — a very rich dessert, something like an egg custard and something like traditional Spanish flan, usually served with local nuts and berries.
Encanelado — a light and fluffy egg-based cake loaded with cinnamon.
Bien me Sabe — originally made by nuns, this sweet treat’s recipe is too
complex for most of us to reproduce at home. A coconut-based cake with layers of cream and meringue.
Alfajores — a sweet custard pressed between two light pieces of pastry.
- 1 2/3 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
- 2 1/2 cups cornstarch
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
- 3/4 cup white sugar
- 3 egg yolks
- 1 teaspoon vanilla rum
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon lemon extract
- 2 teaspoons lemon zest
- 1 (11.5 ounce) jar dulce de leche
- 1/2 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line baking sheets with parchment. Whisk together flour, cornstarch, baking soda, and baking powder.
Beat butter and sugar with an electric mixer in a large bowl until light and fluffy. Add egg yolks one at a time. Beat in vanilla rum, vanilla extract, lemon extract, and lemon zest. Gently fold in the flour mixture with a spoon, making a crumbly dough. Press the dough into a ball. Wrap with plastic wrap and chill for 30 minutes.
Roll out the dough about 1/4 inch thick. Cut with a small round cookie cutter. Continue pressing the dough together, rolling it out, and cutting until you have used it all. Place cookies 1/2 inch apart on the prepared cookie sheets.
Bake in the preheated oven until set, 7 to 10 minutes. Remove the cookies immediately to cool on a wire rack.
Spread the underside of a cooled cookie with a teaspoon of dulce de leche, then sandwich together with another cookie until the caramel oozes out the sides. Roll the sides in the shredded coconut.
Tejas — these sweet treats are usually wrapped in decorative paper and given away at festivals.
- 2 cups dulce de leche
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 2 cups white chocolate chips, or chopped white chocolate
- 1 tablespoon vegetable shortening
- 12-15 pitted prunes, cut into halves
- 1 cup macademia nuts
Place the dulce de leche and butter in a very heavy pot. Heat on low.
Remove from heat, stir in vanilla, and let cool overnight in the refrigerator.
Use a melon baller to scoop small balls of the candy, then shape them with your hands into a cylinder. Press a couple of macademia nuts and half of a prune into the top of each. Place candies in the freezer while you prepare the chocolate.
Bring an inch of water to a boil in a saucepan. Place the white chocolate chips in a heat proof bowl that fits over the top of the saucepan without touching the water. Place the bowl over the water and turn off the heat.
Stir the chips until they are melted.
Dip the candies with the nuts and prune in the chocolate, and place in the refrigerator to harden. Keep melted chocolate warm by leaving the bowl over the pot of hot water.
Once chocolate has set, dip the candies a second time. Chill until firm.
How to Make Donuts
I know what you’re thinking–who has the time to make donuts when Krispy Kreme is right down the street? Look up the nutritional facts on commercially-produced donuts. Go ahead, we’ll wait.
Making donuts on your own at home is a great way to control the ingredients that go into the fried, fluffy treats that everyone loves. Maybe there’s a cop that lives in your neighborhood and you want to get on his good side? Whatever your reason for wanting to make donuts on your own, we’ve got you covered.
Vegetable oil, for frying
3 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup sugar
3 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
2 tablespoons shortening
3/4 cup milk
OPTIONAL: jimmies, chocolate sprinkles, or other traditional donut topping
This recipe makes about 24 donuts.
1. Heat two to three inches of oil in either a deep fryer or a very heavy kettle. You want the oil to reach about 375 F–check the temperature of the oil before you begin frying. If your oil is too hot, you’ll burn the donuts. Too cool, and they won’t cook properly all the way through.
2. Beat 1 1/2 cups of flour and all the remaining ingredients in a large mixing bowl at low speed. Be sure to scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl for the 30 seconds it should take to mix the ingredients, otherwise you’ll have lump, uncooked donuts. After the first 30 seconds on low speed, continue to beat the ingredients at medium speed, scraping the bowl only occasionally. Do this for 2 minutes. Afterwards, stir in the remaining flour by hand.
3. Cover a cutting board or sheet of parchment paper with lots of flour. Turn your donut dough around and around in the flour, rolling it gently around so that it is fully coated. Then, roll your dough out to a thickness of 3/8 inch–a half inch actually is just too thick, so measure precisely.
4. Cut the dough into donut shapes with a floured donut cutter. If you don’t have a donut cutter, you can use two ring-shaped cutters, one smaller (for the interior hole) and one larger for the donut itself. The key is to flour the device you use to cut so the dough doesn’t stick.
5. Here’s the tricky part–frying the donuts. You want to gently slide the donuts into your preheated oil using a wide spatula or (if you have good coordination) a long wooden dowel. You want to put the donut into the oil the way you’d put your foot into a hot bath . . . gently, and a little bit at a time. Once the donuts rise to the surface of the oil, they’re ready to be turned and cooked on the other side.
6. Fry your donuts until they are golden brown. It should take no more than a minute and a half on each side at the proper oil temperature.
7. Remove the donuts from the oil, making sure not to poke or break their surface. Let the donuts drain on paper towels or a baking rack.
8. You can serve them plain, dusted with confectioner’s sugar, cinnamon sugar, glazed with icing, or dipped in chocolate. You can also sprinkle them with jimmies, coconut, chopped nuts, or any topping you like, just be sure to do it while the donuts are still slightly moist.
2011 International House of Pancakes Coupons
IHOP, also known as International House of Pancakes, is a huge chain of restaurants focusing on breakfast food. There are more than 1,500 IHOP restaurants in the world, at least one in each of the 50 states, as well as restaurants in Canada, Mexico, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. 99% of IHOP restaurants are run by independent franchisees, indicating the company’s commitment to small business.
With the word “pancakes” right in the name, it’s obvious that IHOP focuses on breakfast foods, but not everything is pancakes, French toast and omelettes on the IHOP menu. There are plenty of lunch and dinner items, from diner-style hamburgers to more complex entrees and even steak.
What started as a single restaurant in 1958 has turned into a breakfast empire. Most IHOP locations are open 24 hours a day cooking eggs and bacon around the clock. IHOP is something of a specialty restaurant, and while the menu offers throwback diner food, the prices are very 2011. To save money on your next trip to IHOP, check out these coupon and promo offers.
2011 Online IHOP Coupons
IHOP is not shy about their coupon policy, stating emphatically on their website that most of their coupons come from “the glossy coupon inserts in the Sunday newspaper.” Companies like Valassis, SmartSource, and CoolSavings regularly print these glossy inserts and make them available to municipal newspapers. This doesn’t mean that finding coupons for IHOP is a matter of ruffling through your newspaper. There are other ways to find IHOP coupons online.
Companies who prepare these glossy inserts, like RedPlum, regularly make these coupons available to websites and online users as well. This is where third-party coupon websites find most of their deals, through coupon companies’ online offers. Check out 8coupons.com, a coupon hunting site that will take your location into account when you search for IHOP coupons. 8coupons.com will find promos and coupons for IHOP restaurants in your area automatically.
Printable IHOP Coupons
Popular third-party coupon gathering site RetailMeNOt.com has a page dedicated to IHOP that is currently hosting five “active coupons.” A coupon is considered “active” as long as it has at least a 50% success rate. Coupon deals range from simple “5% off” deals to special offers good at select stores. You can print these coupons out from your browser and bring them with you on your next trip to IHOP.
Other IHOP Deals
IHOP has a special club, called Pancake Revolution, that offers deals and coupons to members. You sign up online for free, with just a few personal details, and you’ll soon be enjoying free IHOP food. Immediately upon signing up, you’ll get a free meal at IHOP. One calendar year after you sign up, you’ll eat another free IHOP meal. Being a member of this club has a few other perks as well, such as coupons and promotional deals emailed right your inbox.
- American Eagle Coupons
- HEB Coupons
- Jiffy Lube Coupons
- Subway Coupons
- Sonic Coupons
- Quiznos Coupons
- Garnet Hill Coupons
HEB Grocery Coupons 2011
HEB is a grocery store chain with 315 stores operating all over Texas and in Northern Mexico. The store is a privately owned, Texas-based chain that also runs an upscale version called Central Market. While both stores carry organic and “fine” foods, you’ll find a wider selection of organic and natural foods at Central Market stores.
HEB gets its funny name from its founder, a man named Herbert E Butts. While his name might be funny, his business is dead serious. HEB came in at number 11 on the 2006 Forbes Magazine list of “America’s Largest Private Companies.” Last year, HEB was named “Retailer of the Year” by Progressive Grocer magazine, and the grocery store chain is the twenty-seventh largest retailer in the United States. HEB has a heart for charity, often sponsoring or assisting in local charity causes as well as donating a full five percent of their pre-tax profits to national and international charities.
If you spend as much time in the grocery store as we at AskDeb do, you know the bottom line can really add up. Here are some ideas for saving money at HEB with HEB coupons, deals, promos, and other tricks.
Online HEB Coupons
The best place to find HEB coupons online is HEB’s website. They post new coupons along with weekly ads right on the site for you to print and bring along with you. When you print coupons directly from HEB, there’s no worrying about whether or not they’ll honor the deal . . . if it comes directly from the company, you know it is a valid coupon.
Right now at HEB’s coupon site, the deals range from $5 off any perfume purchase to $10 off select brands of blood pressure monitors. These deals change weekly, so check out HEB’s coupon page before every shopping trip to stay up to date on their coupon offers.
Third-Party HEB Coupons
You may have a more difficult time using any coupons you print from third-party coupon hunting sites at HEB. They are fairly strict about their coupon policy, and some users report having to speak to a manager before certain coupons were honored.
Still, the venerable third-party coupon champ RetailMeNot.com has a page dedicated to printable HEB coupons and there are currently four deals listed as “active”, including special deals on specific products and even a generic “$5 off” deal that has about a 50% reported success rate.
HEB Coupon Policy
When using coupons at HEB, you should keep the store’s coupon policy in mind. The policy should be posted at every store, usually near the customer service desk. That policy is as follows:
- There are no valid HEB coupons for “free” items–you will never see a valid HEB coupon for any grocery item for free. This includes “buy one get one free” deals. The store simply doesn’t offer or honor them.
- Unless otherwise advertised, each HEB customer has a limit of $10 worth of coupon savings per visit. To get around this restriction, just split your grocery list in half and have two people do the shopping. That way you can save up to $20.
- For every item you buy, you can use one HEB store coupon and one manufacturer’s coupon. All HEB store coupons have a small “S” symbol in one of the bottom corners to denote that it is a valid store coupon.
If you follow some basic rules and find coupons online, you can save a ton of money on your next grocery trip to your neighborhood HEB or Central Market.
- American Eagle Coupons
- Jiffy Lube Coupons
- Guitar Center Coupons
- Subway Coupons
- Sonic Coupons
- Quiznos Coupons
- Garnet Hill Coupons
Sonic Coupons 2011
Sonic coupons should be easy to use, because this is the fast food retail chain that offers brown bag special nights and a constant flow of monthly promotions. I’ve had Sonic waitresses offer Sonic coupons for the slightest perceived delays and offenses, so you’re dealing with a company that uses discount promotions constantly.
There are actually a couple of options for getting Sonic coupons online: go to an Internet coupon code website or get savings directly from Sonic through their Sonic Cruisers Club and Sonic Cards programs. I’ll discuss each of these in brief.
Retain Me Not Sonic Coupons
You can get free Sonic coupons and coupon codes at one of the prominent Internet coupon sites, such as Retail Me Not’s Sonic page. The current bargains on this coupons site include a birthday discount coupon, a “buy one shake, get another shake” free coupon, free coffee, free teacher discounts, free shipping on gift cards, and free Route 44 drinks.
You’ll be able to print off these printable coupons and coupon codes, many of which are over 10 digits. At RetailMeNot, you can see how often other costumers were able to use these coupons successful. The range I’m seeing isn’t always high with SONIC promotions on this site, between 50% and 8%, probably because the large number of locally-owned SONICs and the matter of “participating retailers”.
If a fifty-percent success rate isn’t to your liking, you might take a look at the Sonic Cruisers Club, the official way to get Sonic discounts.
Sonic Cruisers Club – Rewards & Coupons
You can also join Sonic’s online costumer rewards club, the Sonic Cruisers Club. It takes about a minute to sign-up, which lets you log onto Sonic.com and see what the latest deals and promotions are. Let me give an example.
Right now, the latest deals offered includes $2.99 for a BLT and tots deal, a Red Velvet Cheesecake Sonic Blast, and a SuperSONIC Cheeseburger combo. You can earn more savings by using your Sonic Card.
Sonic Card Reload Rewards
The Sonic Card is exactly what it sounds like: a Sonic gift card. This is only for those customers who really love Sonic and know they’re going to be eating there often enough to make this work. If you fit that profile, you get extra discounts for using your Sonic card under their “Earn Free Food” option.
When you “reload” your Sonic Card at Sonic dot com, you’ll get special offers, such as the free regular Sonic burger, free regular SONIC Blast, or free breakfast burrito with a reload of $25 or more. For “My Sonic Card” reloads between $15 and $24.99, you get a coupon for a free medium Sonic drink, free medium tots, or free order of medium onion rings.
All you have to use is either the “one-time reload” or “automatic reload” pages at the Sonic website. You’ll need to wait between 24 and 48 hours for the rewards to appear on your card, but after that, you have free food, drinks, and desserts waiting for you at your local Sonic. Don’t worry about getting spammed by Sonic emails by signing up. You can set parameters to receive as many or as few offers as you want.
- Red Lobster Coupons
- Fast Food Coupons to Print
- Arbys Coupons
- Texas de Brazil Coupons
- Cheerios Coupons
- Olive Garden Coupons
- Boston Market Coupons
Quizno’s Coupons 2011
Everybody knows that Quizno’s sandwiches are better than Subway sandwiches, but Quizno’s can be a little pricey for a sandwich shop. Having Quizno’s coupons to take money off your final total here and there is important, when you’re budgeting your daily lunch menu.
Even a dollar here and there adds up over the course of a year, so finding Quiznos coupons and online coupon codes becomes essential. It’s not enough to clip coupons out of the Sunday newspaper, but if you have a ready supply of printable coupons every time you walk into a Quizno’s, these savings add up.
Retail Me Not Quiznos Coupons Online
Retail-Me-Not is arguably the most reliable online coupon website, and you’ll find a long list of Quizno’s Coupons on the RetailMeNot Quizno’s page. Below is a representative, if incomplete, list of Quizno’s deals you can find there at present.
- $1 Off a Sub
- $1 Off a Chopped Salad
- $2 Off a Regular or Large Sub
- $10 Off $35 Catering
- $5 Off $20 Catering
- Free Small Sub When you Buy Regular Chips and Fountain Drink
- Free Half Toasty When you Buy Regular Chips and Fountain Drink
- $3 off Subs
The success rates of using these coupons and promo codes are listed next to each coupon listed. Notice how the most reliable coupons are listed at the top of the page, so as you print off coupons from Retail-Me-Not, note that you’re more likely to have success using a coupon they higher up the page your selection is.
Quizno’s “Get Coupon” Page
You can also go to the Quiznos website and find the Quizno’s Get Coupon feature. Here, you can sign up for special deals and promotions with Quizno’s online operation. At present, you get any small prime rib sub for $2.99. That represents a significant savings over your everyday prices.
Once again, joining the Quizno’s coupon club is unobtrusive. If you feel you’re getting spammed by their advertisements (which I’m sure you won’t), you can set filters to rid yourself of any problems. The occasional email announcement of new sandwiche or other menu items and the latest promotion is a small price to pay for savings off your visits to the Quizno’s sub shops.
Kids Eat Free at Quiznos – Printable Coupons
Some people prefer not to sign up with these clubs, so if you’re still searching for Quizno’s savings, you might take a look at the Deals Plus Quiznos page. There’s a coupon here where kids 12 and under eat for free, receiving a sub, toasty torpedo, regular chopped salad, or “Choose 2″ meal for free.
You might try this at your local Quizno’s. The printable coupon in question says that no couple is necessary, though this is for a limited time. That time may have expired in your location, as only 7 of 22 visitors polled said the coupon had worked for them at their location. That’s around 30% success rate, so it’s not likely to be in effect for you. Ask before you have the sandwich made, if that could turn into a problem for you.
- Blimpie Coupons
- McDonalds Coupons
- Arbys Coupons
- Edible Arrangements Coupons
- Melting Pot Coupons
- Burlington Coat Factory Coupons
- Great Clips Coupons
Free Restaurant Coupons to Print
If you can use Google, you can find coupons for your favorite restaurant. Finding restaurant coupons to print right from your web browser takes just a few seconds, and in some cases you can save ten or fifteen bucks with a single coupon. Of course, not every restaurant has online coupons–you’re most likely to find a coupon for a restaurant that operates as a chain, though sometimes a single-owner restaurant offers online coupons or deals for people who visit their website.
There are so many websites devoted to coupons, coupon hunting, and promotional deals, it is a miracle that anyone pays full price for anything anymore. The Internet is the perfect venue for coupon hunting–people from all over the world can post their coupon and deal finds in one easy-to-search place, and millions of us do just that. Why hunt for coupons all onyour own? Find restaurant coupons to print from your web browser before your next night eating out.
Online Printable Restaurant Coupons 2011
Any time you’re looking for online coupons, going to the manufacturer’s website is the first step. Everyone has a website these days, and most of these websites contain a promo code, printable coupon, or promotional offer for their customers. Look for words like “Coupons” or “Special Offers”, usually prominently displayed on the main page of a website. If you don’t see something like this, look for an “e-club” or “online newsletter” where you enter your email address and the restaurant sends you a monthly email. These clubs almost always come with coupons and deals.
After you dig through a restaurant’s website, check Facebook and Twitter for social media pages. Big chain restaurants and local hot dog joints alike keep free social media profiles to stay in touch with their customers. You can usually find a coupon by following social media, with either exclusive printable coupons on a company’s social media profile or instructions for getting special deals that fans of their social media pages hear about first.
Third-Party Coupon Sites for Restaurant Coupons
Sites like CouponMom.com, 8coupons.com, wow-coupons.com and others are like giant versions of your grandmother’s old coupon drawer. If you dig long enough you’re bound to find a coupon you can use for a restaurant you love. They work by asking people to post coupons and deals they find, then everyone around the world can use these printable coupons without doing more than simply searching for the restaurant they want to go to.
Any coupon you find online especially at third-party sites should be verified before you try to use them. There’s nothing more embarrassing than trying to use an invalid coupon or having your coupon rejected by a restaurant’s management.
Other Restaurant Coupon Ideas
If you still can’t find a coupon for a restaurant you like visiting their website or a third-party site, you have to get creative. Buying the Entertainment Book gives you instant access to lots of entertainment coupons, including some restaurants. The 2011 edition of the Entertainment Book is on sale right now, and you never know what cool coupon deals you’ll get when you buy it.
Using the Internet to save money on restaurant night is easy and free. You should never spend money for an online coupon–they’re easy enough to find if you point your browser to the right place. Restaurant coupons to print out from your Internet browser are sitting there begging for you to find them.
- Round Table Pizza Coupons
- Betty Crocker Coupons
- Fast Food Coupons
- Coupons for Groceries, Printable
- Aveeno Coupons
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Cuisinart is the top small appliance brand in North America and carries a fine reputation that’s recognized by almost all American consumers. From its first decade of business starting in the 1970s, Cuisinart rose from being an unrecognized brand to the most popular kitchen appliance brand in North America. Millions of Americans and Canadians buy Cuisinart every year and its continued business success has real reasons.
Top Leading Brand in North America
When you buy a Cuisinart appliance, you can be rest assured you will have a top-of-the-line appliance for years to come. Best of all, Cuisinart style is unmatched in the kitchen industry. Many homeowners flock to the Cuisinart brand when they remodel, dreaming of bringing the stylish Cuisinart design standard to their own kitchen.
Cuisinart was founded in 1971 and from early on, Julia Child and James Beard endorsed the stylish and modern brand. These two American household stars recognized the following in the Cuisinart brand:
- Revolutionary kitchen products such as the food processor
- Modern clean style
- Reliable engineering that last years
- Interchangeable parts for repair
- Excellent customer warranties
- Unmatched customer satisfaction
- Responsive customer service for repair and replacement
Today, Cuisinart has an abundance of products designed to make your life easier and richer. All these products come with the same unsurpassed guaranteed consumer satisfaction that keeps Cuisinart customers coming back year after year.
Best Appliances for Your Home
No matter how much use you’ll get out of your Cuisinart appliance, you’ll get the same great product performance throughout the years. Cuisinart specializes in small kitchen appliances. While Cuisinart doesn’t manufacture large dishwashers or refrigerators, they create products that complement large appliances to make your life easier. Here are just a few of the most popular Cuisinart products:
- Microwave and Toaster Ovens
- Countertop cooking appliances
- Water filtration
- Pizza ovens
- Waffle makers
Most consumers are introduced to Cuisinart through the company’s trademark blender and food processor products. In fact, in some kitchens the blender is simply called the “Cuisinart.” The blender and food processor were the two products that placed Cuisinart at the top of the kitchen appliance industry in the 1970s. By the 1990s, the Cuisinart coffee brewer and coffee makers were the most popular on the market and complimented their blender market. Renowned for their appliance strength and simplicity, many consumers pay extra for the Cuisinart brand knowing it will last longer and have carefree operations.
Today Cuisinart style is recognized with stainless steel, sturdy plastics, strong appliance motors (when applicable) and slim-line design. One of the biggest retailers of Cuisinart is Bed, Bath and Beyond, which also endorses Cuisinart’s one-year warranty on almost all their products. Some smaller appliances even come with a lifelong warranty.
Cuisinart’s motto makes their product goal very clear: to make life easier for people who love great-tasting food with innovative design and reliable technology. Surprisingly enough, kitchen technology hasn’t changed all that much throughout the years. But kitchen quality has. Cuisinart combines the best of tried-and-tested technology with new reliable design that delivers quite the product.
About the Author: Mike Rocha is an engineer from Florida with a passion for food and the Cuisinart brand. As an engineer and hobbyist chef, he uses and stands by Cuisinart not just because of the name, but the ingenuity, quality and functionality that they represent. Being an electrical engineer who designs and develops medical imaging systems, Mike understands more than most what is necessary in creating these advanced appliances. Check out his website for reviews and special offers on appliances like Cuisinart 4-slice toasters and Cuisinart coffeemakers.
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You probably have at least a vague idea what a food processor is. The name is pretty self-explanatory, but if you are new to the kitchen you may not know all the things a food processor can do. Another question that often crops up is: what is the difference between a food processor and a blender? Well, here we will endeavor to answer your questions.
A Little History…
If you don’t own a food processor, you know what a pain it is to have to chop, mix and shred a lot of food (especially if you have a large family to cook for). So you can imagine what a nuisance it was for caterers and restaurant chefs to prepare foods in such a manner for the amount of people they serve before the invention of the food processor. Pierre Vurdun, a salesman for a French catering company, witnessed this firsthand and produced the first simple food processor – a bowl with a blade in it. By 1960, Robot-Coupe had evolved; a company that made food processors for caterers. In the late 60s, induction motors were introduced in food processors. But it wasn’t until the 70s that domestic food processors were made available. Carl Sontheimer introduced the Magimix 1800 to the United States in 1973 under the Cuisinart brand.
But What Does a Food Processor Do? – Food Processor Uses
Like many people, you’ve probably gone into your local home goods store and marveled at all the small appliances and kitchen gadgets. A lot of it simply looks cool, but you have no idea how you’d use half of it. A food processor, however, is an appliance that has so many uses that it is nearly indispensible once you get the hang of it. A food processor can:
- Chop and slice fruits and vegetables
- Grind meat, nuts, and seeds
- Grate or shred cheese and vegetables
- Mix and knead dough
So yes, you can do many of this stuff by hand but it is a terrible pain. The powerful motor that drives your average food processor really does all the work for you, and you don’t need any liquids present like you do with a blender. You’ll have no sore hands to worry about and no fear about cutting yourself with your knife while chopping. Modern food processors have safety features like automatic shut-off when the bowl is off the base and a feed tube that allows you to add food while processing without endangering your fingers.
Cuisinart was indeed the first brand of food processors domestically available in the United States and actually many people simply call food processors “cuisinarts.” While it is a misnomer, it gives you some idea about how important the brand is in the food processor industry. Though they’ve branched out into many different kitchen appliances, Cuisinart remains dedicated to their quality food processors. You’ll come across a lot of different brands if you’re in the market for a food processor, but don’t be fooled by imitators. Don’t waste your money on a cheap knock-off with a brand name you’ve never even heard of. Stick with a company you know and trust like Cuisinart.
About the Author: Mike Rocha is an engineer from Florida with a passion for food and the Cuisinart brand. As an engineer and hobbyist chef, he uses and stands by Cuisinart not just because of the name, but the ingenuity, quality and functionality that they represent. Being an electrical engineer who designs and develops medical imaging systems, Mike understands more than most what is necessary in creating these advanced appliances. Check out his website for reviews and special offers on an appliance such as a Cuisinart toaster or a Cuisinart coffeemaker.
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Braums Coupons 2011
What started as a small milk and dairy farm in Emporia, Kansas during the 1930s has become a name synonymous with delicious ice cream. Braums currently owns hundreds of acres of “the best farmland in America” where they raise their dairy cows to produce ice cream and other dairy products. Though Braums is only available in Kansas, Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, and Missouri, towns that do have a Braums franchise are full of people who go nuts for Braums milk and ice cream products.
Since Braums is a very regional restaurant, coupons can be hard to come by. With a little luck and a little elbow grease, you can save money on your Braums purchases, and there’s even a program that your kids can sign up for whereby the earn free treats for reading books. Here are some other ideas for how to save money on the ice cream and dairy you buy at Braums.
Online Braums Coupons
There’s lots of different ways to save on your Braums purchases. Third party bargain hunting sites like CampusFood.com
often have Braums coupons that you can simply print out and bring to the store with you for your next purchase. Another third-party coupon option is a site like RetailMeNot that depends partly on the input from other users to identify coupons and other deals available at local Braums Ice Cream and Dairy stores.
Braums’ “Book Buddy” program gives free ice cream to students who read books. Learn about the program here on the
Braums website. Basically, if your school is already on the list, your kid’s teacher signs a piece of paper saying that the student has read six books–for every six books the kid reads, he or she can get a coupon for a free treat from Braums, no purchase necessary.
Printable Braums Coupons
It can be difficult to find printable coupons for the Braums ice cream and dairy products you love. This is partly because Braums is a regional name (and not a national chain) and partly because of the business model Braums uses. Their prices on dairy and ice cream are already much lower than at the grocery store, so it seems Braums prefers to give customers overall discounts on menu items rather than specific coupons.
Having said that, if you have a good eye you can sometimes find printable Braums coupons online. The best way to do this is to search sites like 8coupons.com or ultimatecoupons.com for Braums deals. They do pop up from time to time–and most of the time, you’ll find coupon codes for purchases directly from the Braums website rather than a printable coupon for use in-store.
Braums milk and ice cream products just taste better than what you buy in the grocery store, and though their fans are more than a little miffed that you can no longer simply order milk right from the drive-thru, Braums will always have a loyal following of people who like quality milk products and don’t want to pay inflated grocery prices.
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