How to Make Perfect Cookies

Posted on June 19, 2016 By

final-2Baking has been my delight basically all my life. I started avidly baking when I was 8. It all started with simple things like helping my mom put ingredients in the bowl and then getting to lick the dough off of the spoon! I enjoyed watching the cookie dough through the oven window, gazing at it as it spread into a nice even circle and then rise when they were out of the oven cooling off. As I started getting older, I started making my mom’s recipes on my own. Then when I got to be about 12, I started exploring recipes on my own and creating my own signature cookies as I tweaked the recipe just to my liking. While I have always been a natural baker, other people have shared with me disaster stories. These people always experience a problem when attempting to bake. I am going to share with you some common flops that I hear about on a regular basis along with some tips on how to avoid them.

Cookies appear flat, thin, and runny:

I

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10 Easy Chicken Recipes the Family Will Love

Posted on June 18, 2016 By

downloadLooking for ways to put dinner on the table with a bit of creativity but without the hassle and hectic prep time? I learned years ago that just because I was responsible for making dinners in my household, it didn’t mean I was able or interested in prepping a time consuming hot meal five nights a week. If you have the same hectic lifestyle most families have today, these tips and recipes should help you feed your family, stay within budget, and actually enjoy what you cook!

All recipes here start with cooked chicken, and will feed four (with average appetites). Doesn’t matter if it’s white or dark meat. It doesn’t even matter how much chicken you use – you know your family’s appetites better than anyone!

I know – most of you are saying, “Cooked chicken? You just told me I didn’t have to spend a bunch of prep time making these meals!”

Right! What I do is either buy one of those precooked rotisserie chickens (I love the ones at Costco because they are only $4.99 and absolutely delicious!), or I buy a 3 –

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Tips On How To Use A Pizza Stone

Posted on June 17, 2016 By

0bc4bf73-e099-4661-ad8d-53807823c429Baking stones are great for cooking a variety of foods including pizza, but without proper care, it’s easy to break or damage them. If you’re trying to learn how to use a pizza stone, follow these tips for both use and maintenance of the stone.

Preheating the Stone

Depending on where you purchase your baking stone, you may not need to pre-heat it. However, it will not damage the stone and it is usually a good idea. The best way to do this properly is to put it into the oven when it is at room-temperature and then pre-heat it. Afterwards, remove the stone and place the pizza or other food you’re cooking on it. After you’ve done this, return the stone to the oven and bake according to the recipe.

If you’re worried about cracking the pizza stone, you can avoid this by making sure that it doesn’t change temperature rapidly. If you put a cold cooking stone in a hot oven, the high temperature change can cause it to crack. Similarly, if you remove it from the

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5 Tips for Cooking in a Storm

Posted on June 16, 2016 By

1. Flashlights, matches and batteries, oh, my! It doesn’t have to be a flashlight, but a light source of some type should be kept in the kitchen specifically for times like this. If you are using a flashlight, keep spare batteries nearby in case the ones being used begin to fade. Have matches handy to use on pilot lights or lanterns.

2. Know your kitchen appliances. If you experience a power outage then, unfortunately, an electric oven will not be of any use to you at this point. However, on a gas oven you may be able to relight the pilot with certain models. Assuming the pilot light sensor is not electrically activated but is mechanically activated, you should be able to relight the pilot. Your best bet, however, is going to be gas stove burners that can be lit with a match at any point during an outage.

3. Own a handheld can opener. The best appliance you can have on hand is a handheld can opener. While electronic can openers can be handy from time to time, during a power outage you will be able to rely on the manual type to allow access

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Top 5 Common Mistakes to Avoid When Grilling Vegetables

Posted on May 18, 2016 By

Grilling fruits and vegetables is relatively easy – they cook way quicker compared to meat plus you could easily tell when they’re ready from the grill just by looking at them. However, if you want the most out of your grilled vegetables in terms of flavor and nutrition, there are certain mistakes that a lot of people make that you should avoid.

Here are the top 5 most common mistakes when grilling fruits and vegetables:

1. Not preparing vegetables into workable pieces

One of the most common mistakes when grilling fruits and vegetables is not preparing them into workable pieces for the grill. Don’t just place them there whole – fresh produce need to be cut, peeled or sliced in preparation for grilling so that they can be cooked evenly. Unless you’re using a grill basket for your veggies, make sure they’re the right size for your grill grates – not too small to fall through the grates, but not too big that it would be hard to be cooked through.

2. Lack of preparation

Like meat needs to be thawed and seasoned in preparation for grilling, fruits and vegetables require the same

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The 5 Best Expert Techniques on How to Grill Vegetables

Posted on May 18, 2016 By

Fruits and vegetables are a lot less expensive compared to meat, so you can save money if you choose to cook fresh produce. Also, fresh produce are a healthier alternative to usual grilled meat dishes so it is ideal to take a break from cooking beef or pork from time to time. The best part of all is that fruits and vegetables cook a lot more quickly than meat and you can usually tell when they’re ready just by looking at them – perfect for grilling beginners!

Add color to your grilled dish recipes with these expert tips and techniques on how to grill fruits and vegetables:

1. Prepare fruits and vegetables for grilling

Whether you’re cooking meat or fresh produce, it is important that you have your food prepared into workable pieces for the grill. For example, you can cut tomatoes in half and bell peppers into quarters for a quicker cooking time and for the food to cook evenly. Some vegetables like asparagus and scallions can be cooked on the grill whole.

2. Pre-cook harder vegetables

Different types of produce require different cooking times. Softer vegetables cook quicker while harder ones

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How to Roast a Chicken on a Rotisserie

Posted on May 17, 2016 By

Nothing beats the taste of a freshly cooked chicken that has been slow roasted over hot coals.

A rotisserie is a style of cooking where meat is placed on a long skewer and rotated over a heat source such as a fire, coals or a BBQ. As the meat is in a state of constant rotation, it provides an even cooking environment. It also allows the chicken to cook in its own juices and allow basting of your choice to be applied throughout the cooking process.

Chicken is a form of poultry meat and is one of the most used meats in the world. There are multiple health benefits from eating chicken. Chicken is high in protein, low in total and saturated fat and has a good source of several B vitamins.

Below is a step by step guide on how to roast a chicken on a rotisserie

Step 1: Brining the Chicken

Brining chicken is a way to increase moisture and tenderness of the chicken. Soaking chicken in a salt water mix allows muscle fibers to loose some of their ability to contract during the cooking process with leads to a juicier

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Different Healthier Food Preparation Tips And Techniques

Posted on May 16, 2016 By

If you are to prepare as well as cook meals at home, you will certainly have better control over the nutritional content along with the overall healthfulness of the foods you ingest. This will also greatly help in saving money.

Health Food Prep Techniques

Consider using and preparing foods that contain no or little salt. Also, use low-fat, reduced, light or no-fat salad dressings on salads as marinades or perhaps dips. When it comes to poultry, you must use leaner light meat rather than fattier dark meat. Most importantly, be sure to remove the skin.

When it comes to seasonings, you must not use prepackaged seasoning mixes since they usually contain plenty of salt. Also, you have to use fresh herbs. Using a mortar and pestle, you have to grind herbs to achieve the fullest and freshest flavor.

Use citrus juice or perhaps vinegar as excellent flavor enhancers. But then, you have to add them at the last moment. They are indeed great on vegetables like greens. Also, citrus will work very well on fruits like melons. Food preparation experts highly emphasized that there are some fruits and vegetables like tomatoes, chili peppers, cranberries,

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Food Safety: 5 Tips for Safe Grilling and Delicious Barbecue

Posted on April 28, 2016 By

This is especially true when you’re new at grilling because you are always handling raw meat and still figuring out how to cook them thoroughly. But just by following a few simple tips, you can ensure safe grilling and at the same time, delicious and perfectly-cooked barbecue dishes.

Here are 5 easy tips to follow for food safety while working the grill:

1. Prepare your ingredients before grilling

It is the number one rule of any chef or griller to have all ingredients ready and in place before the cooking process begins. When preparing fruits and vegetables for the grill, make sure they are thoroughly washed even if you are going to cook them peeled. When it comes to meat, it is more ideal not to rinse them before cooking as bacteria can spread faster if the juices are splashed onto your counter or sink.

2. Thaw frozen meat the safe way

One important rule in grilling is to never barbecue frozen meat. Otherwise, you will end up with a steak that’s cooked on the outside but raw on the inside. Having said this, it is important to thaw your meat before it hits the grill. There are many ways to do this but experts

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How to Bake a Perfect Cake?

Posted on April 27, 2016 By

One day I was sitting at home, it was a Saturday afternoon when I felt like baking a cake. I have seen a friend of mine baking and learnt some basic tricks from her. But I had not practised those tricks. So it was the right time to experiment and see how much I had learnt. Since it was Saturday, I was expecting some guests around dinner time. I thought for dessert, a cake would be a good choice.

So I took out my notebook and went to the kitchen. I first figured out that if I had the basic ingredients with me. Like butter, eggs, flour, sugar, baking powder and vanilla extract.

Baking is like science, every method or ingredient reacts in a specific way. Even if you do everything properly but bake it at a wrong temperature, your cake won’t come out perfect. So the things you will have to keep in mind are very basic and easy to understand.

Do not use any ingredient if it’s not at the right temperature or if it’s not of the desired quantity. Your ingredients must be weighed on a measuring scale to ensure that you

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Six Healthy Party Snacks

Posted on April 26, 2016 By

Whether it is an impromptu get-together with friends or a formal cocktail party, whether you are hosting them or being hosted, parties are an important part of our lifestyle. They are like mini-vacations for celebration, fun and laughter with family and friends. While get-togethers and parties are a great way to unwind, especially after those tiresome work hours, we do tend to indulge in all kinds of unhealthy food items.

What you snack at these get together parties, matters more than you think.Healthy snacking is a great way to combat hunger in between meals. They tend to add too many calories for too few nutrients.And if you are someone who is trying to watch calories and lose weight then you are likely to dread either hosting or going to these parties.

However, you can change this misconception of people wherein snacking equals unhealthy by serving snacks made from fresh fruits, vegetables and dry fruits such as almonds at parties.

Almonds, in specific, make for an easy snack option.Here are a few healthier options for you to try or recommend for the next party so can nibble, guilt-free!

· Grilled fruit, vegetable or chicken skewers:

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How to Make Desserts Organic

Posted on April 25, 2016 By

Fresh fruit and veggies are organic sources of meals that you can enjoy without feeling guilty when you crave something light and refreshing as desserts. Depending upon age and gender, consuming 1 to 2.5 cups of fruits per day is highly recommended for us as stated by The U.S. Department of Agriculture. An adult male requires slightly higher portions of fruit and vegetables than a young girl does. In addition, The National Cancer Society advised that everyone should consume five parts of vegetable and three parts of fruit to stay away from cancer.

Probably there is not any better dessert for organic meal lovers than natural ice cream to charm their summer time. Variation of toppings could be limitless to pour on the ice cream including frozen fruit, chocolate flakes, nuts, dried fruits, and more to enhance your summer menu. If you do not wish to spend too much time in the kitchen to make your organic desserts, then all you need to have is a special ice cream maker.

A Frost Food machine has a cold plate as its main components. It is an efficient catering equipment which bars and restaurants should have to get

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All About Risotto

Posted on March 24, 2016 By

Delicious Risotto Tips and Info

There is no way of knowing how rice actually came to Italy. Most likely came in from Spain around the fourteenth century. It immediately became a very popular Italian staple in every household. The countryside around Milan has the perfect combination of water, land and humidity to cultivate this type of grain.

The most favored way Italians utilized rice is in the creation of risotto. There are four principle elements to risotto. The first, referring to special ingredients specific to the kind of risotto being made, is the soffritto, which is usually made with combination of vegetables, butter and oil. In my recipes it is simply chopped carrot. celery, green pepper and onions with, of course some garlic thrown in. This mixture is then sauteed with the rice in the butter and oil. The broth or stock is the next component. The broth can be chicken, vegetable, beef or fish, homemade or canned though homemade is the preference in creating a perfect dish. The third ingredient is where the flavor comes from. Saffron is the traditional spice used but you can use a combination of other herbs and spices along with

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5 Top Mistakes to Avoid When Grilling a Burger

Posted on March 23, 2016 By

Grilling a burger is fairly easy, but there are certain tips and tricks that everyone should follow in order to achieve this perfectly-grilled classic. In order to achieve this faster, it is important to learn the most common mistakes that grillers make when cooking a hamburger on the grill.

Avoid these common mistakes the next time you grill burgers and you will surely get a taste of your best one yet:

1. Over-seasoning the meat

While you are free to season and customize your ground meat with whatever spices you prefer, it is important to keep in mind that you’re cooking a burger and not a meatloaf. Classic burgers can taste great with salt and pepper alone – so skip the taco seasoning, the bread crumbs, sautéed onions and other unnecessary additions. Don’t use too much or too little of salt and pepper, though, and don’t forget to season the other side before flipping the patty.

2. Using too much condiments

The same goes when accessorizing your burger once it’s cooked. Using just 2 condiments and 3 toppings is ideal. For example, ketchup and melted cheese plus a slice of onion, a slice

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10 Food Myths You Probably Believe

Posted on March 22, 2016 By

1. Some foods are calorie-negative

By calorie-negative, we mean that your body actually consumes more calories than it receives when you eat them. So, in theory, these would make the ideal diet – you can keep eating and eating and you actually lose weight. It’s such an appealing idea that it’s no wonder that this myth is so prevalent. However, that’s all it is, though – a myth.

Several foods supposedly boast this wonder characteristic, but celery is often heralded as the “King of Negative Calories”. Unfortunately, it is simply not true. Don’t get us wrong, celery does have very few calories, it’s full of fiber and rich in water content, but it still provides you with more calories than you burn by eating it. Plus, you’ll find it very hard to live off celery alone.

2. Coffee dehydrates you

Coffee and other beverages containing caffeine are considered by many to be unhealthy because they lead to dehydration. But is this true? Studies say no. There is some logic behind the thinking. Caffeine acts as a diuretic, meaning that it makes you pee more often. When you do this, you are obviously losing

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Eating Veggies Can Be Fun

Posted on March 21, 2016 By

Add veggies to main dishes and casseroles

The easy way to do this is to add ½ cup to 1 cup of chopped frozen or steamed leafy veggies like spinach to the sauce of your meatloaf, spaghetti or lasagna. No one will notice because it will look like you just added a season like parsley.

Add veggies to smoothies

A great way to get that extra boost of energy you need is to turn your fruit smoothie into a high energy vitamin pack drink. Add ½ cup to 1 cup of any chopped frozen leafy vegetable, puree avocado or vegetable juice to your smoothie. You’ll be amazed how great it still tastes with the vegetables in it.

Add veggies to side dishes

Finely chopped or grated vegetables such as broccoli or cauliflower into your mac n’ cheese so you want feel guilty eating the favorite comfort dish. Sprinkle a mixture of grated broccoli and cauliflower on a combination of seasoned roasted or mashed sweet and regular potatoes. You want believe how tasty they’ll be and that you’re enjoying eating vegetables.

Add veggies to eggs or omelets

Mixed your favorite veggies such

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9 Amazingly Known Facts About Food

Posted on February 20, 2016 By

Honey Never Rots

Honey is one of the few foods that will never spoil. There are a couple of reasons for this. First, honey is a sugar, which means it contains very little moisture. Bacteria cannot grow and survive without a moisture content to live in. Also, honey has a very distinct pH balance between three and four and a half. This makes honey very acidic which will ultimately kill any microorganisms that might want to reside there. The only way honey can ever spoil is if water is added to it or if it is left exposed to moisture. Organisms will then grow, and the honey will go bad.

Apples and Cyanide

Some have wondered if apples contain cyanide. Actually, it is the apple seeds that have very small traces of the poison. Humans are not affected by this because the hard outer layer of the seed protects us from being exposed to the cyanide. Furthermore, if we did chew the seeds we have very little chance of getting sick. The amount of toxin in the seeds is not enough to cause harm, and our digestive system will detoxify whatever has been ingested.

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Tips on Storing Food in Your Fridge Correctly

Posted on February 18, 2016 By

If you have left home for the first time and set up in your very own home or apartment, you might be a little confused about how to store food correctly in your fridge and many of you might not even know that proper storage can actually help to reduce the risks of getting food poisoning. It is always wise to try and learn about food storage practices as a bad case of food poisoning can be extremely bad for your health and could even possibly cause death.

Fridge Storage

There are a number of different foods that need to be stored in a fridge in order to stop bacteria growing on them. These items will usually state that they should be ‘kept refrigerated’ and will have a use by date. Any foods that have been removed from their original packaging should be kept in sanitary bags that are sealed tight.

You should also keep your fridge at or below 5C, never store food in their open cans, and should never put food in the fridge until it has cooled down. Keeping your fridge clean is also very important for the practice of good hygiene.

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Eating Fresh Flowers – Wait, What? How?

Posted on February 17, 2016 By

You may have heard (or not) of the edible flower craze. This culinary technique, however, has been around since time immemorial. Modern and traditional culinaries will agree that the power of blooms is never limited to decorations. They add aroma and taste that only these flowers can produce.

So, step up your cooking game by using fresh flowers on your next gastronomic project.

On cupcake frosting

Bid farewell to the old and boring icing. With pretty blooms on top of your cupcakes, it will look like a piece of edible art. From among the edible flowers, violets and roses are the most common flowers used in cake or cupcake frosting. The violas can produce a sweetness that will compliment your confectionery recipes. Roses, on the other hand, provide different taste depending on color and environmental conditions. But, like the violets their sweet produce pairs perfectly with this delectable dessert.

Frozen petals on popsicles

Have you seen the lipstick that many go gaga about? Hailed as the most beautiful, this lipstick contains flowers on them. Frozen petals on popsicles look exactly the same with these lippies. A perfect match for popsicle recipe are the

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Food Garnishing Tips and Decoration Ideas

Posted on February 16, 2016 By

Do you throw dull, unorganized and every-day picnics. Why not throw the picnic or party that everyone would want to attend. Everyone who is anyone in your circle of friends will come and will be talking about the awesome party you put together for days, weeks or even years. Have you ever gone to a party and wondered, “how did she do that?” or thought, “they are so creative”.

You can be that person that everyone is talking about. You can be that creative host or hostess that would throw an interesting event.

Food garnishing tips and decoration ideas can be found in a variety of places. If you cannot think of ideas on your own, just Google it! You can find books at the department store, or you could copy an idea from a friend or associate when you attend one their parties or picnics.

Disney has been a major part of my niece’s life and she’s a huge fan. She has decorated watermelon slices into the shape of Mickey Ears with a Popsicle stick inserted as handles. She has made princess cupcakes for her daughter’s birthday. Her mother, my sister cuts apples into

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