Monday, March 21, 2011

Make Your Own Dried Fruit Snacks

We all love sweets. Fortunately, plenty of sweet but healthy foods can be made at home. So next time, skip the triple-layer chocolate cake and try a delicious homemade fruit snack.
Dried fruit snacks are a delicious and convenient way to enjoy a snack. You can purchase them at our local supermarket but we suggest you try making them yourself as they are much healthier!
Here are instructions to make your own dried fruit snack.
1 - Select the type of fruit that you would like to use for your fruit snacks. Good choices are bananas, peaches, grapes, pears, kiwi, mango and pineapple. The fruit must be fully ripe and unblemished.

2 - Rinse the fruit in lukewarm water. Peel the fruits that need to be peeled, such as bananas, peaches, pears, kiwi, mango and pineapple.
3 - Dip any light-colored fruits in lemon juice to prevent darkening while in the oven. This includes apples, apricots, bananas, peaches, pears, mango and pineapple.
4 - Cut the fruit into quarter-inch slices. Cut smaller fruits, such as grapes, in half. Pears and apples must be cored, and you will need to remove the pits from peaches, cherries, mango and apricots.

5 - Preheat your oven to 150 degrees Fahrenheit. Place the fruit in one layer on a cookie sheet. After the oven has heated up, place the cookie sheet in the oven. Open the oven door a few inches to allow air to circulate.

6 - Check on the fruit and flip with a spatula every hour. Fruit can take anywhere from eight to 24 hours to dry out. If your fruit is taking a very long time and you must leave it unattended, turn the oven down to 100 degrees F. Flip the fruit again as soon as possible to avoid overdrying. When the fruit becomes leather-like, it is done.

7 - Allow the fruit to cool. Fruit snacks are best when consumed immediately but will last for about four days to a week. Store in plastic bags and place in the refrigerator.

Enjoy your healthy dried fruit snacks! It's always great to have your dried fruit snacks at your fingertips

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Cooking Live Lobsters – How to make it more delicious

It is a well-known fact that live and fresh lobsters are safe for eating. So, before cooking a live lobster you should know about its type. For instance, if you bring home a hard-shelled lobster, you must know that it can possibly survive for two days, if preserved in the right manner. However, a soft-shelled one can only live for a few hours when it is thrown out of the water. This is the reason why it becomes important to know the nature and type of lobster you are buying.

When you have made your mind to spend your money on shrimp and lobsters, it is advisable to both buy and cook them on the same day. This will almost completely eliminate the risk of food poisoning, arising out of eating seafood. Store the lobsters inside your refrigerator for a considerable period of time. And do not worry about losing them as they are not good movers out of the water.

Cooking live lobsters for the first time can be a bit tricky. Though grilled lobsters are a popular choice, boiling and steaming these sea creatures can prove to be a lot easier and safer for you the first time round. As the usual practice is to cook the lobsters alive, you should treat the poor creatures as kindly as possible before that. The cleanest and the easiest method would be to place them inside the freezer for about 30 minutes before taking them for cooking. The lobsters would be almost asleep by then and hence would not feel the pain when you start the cooking process.

The buying part of a live lobster and the shrimp is equally as important as the cooking process. You must be absolutely certain about what you are looking for. When you go to the market you will notice that the Maine lobster is the most popular and common type out of all the lobster species. This type of lobster is known for its taste and aroma. It is important for you to hold the lobster in your hand before buying it. First of all, you will have to find a lobster which is more active. The more it moves around, the better it is. The lobsters that may appear tired may be very close to dying. These lethargic types would not prove good for your health. Hold the lobsters firmly and try to squeeze their body. This method will help you to judge whether the one you are holding in your hand is hard-shelled or a soft-shelled lobster. As mentioned earlier, the hard-shelled ones survive longer, and therefore make a good buy. However, if you are not sure for yourself, then ask the salesperson, he would help you out.

While buying a live lobster, you would also be better served if you bring a cooler for transporting them to your home. This would be the most practical solution for keeping the lobsters as fresh as possible unless you stay very close to the market.

Experience the Ecstasy of Empyrean Dishes with Lobster Tails

Food has always been a perennial weakness of man in general. It is in fact the one thing apart from music that creates a pandemic effect on the mass. Delicious food makes one forget every other trivial issues only to immerse in the delight of the delectable taste. The seafood dinner with its tremendous variety provides one with a similar experience of euphoria yet unknown. The lobster preparations are one of the predominant parts of the seafood cuisine and the lobster tails completely enthrall one with it's out of this world flavor. The best part of consuming seafood is that it does not harm the health of one in any negative way. The healthy yet tasty option of the seafood cuisine, leaves one licking the fingers and coming back for more and more of it.

The very name of seafood dinner leaves one with mouth watering eagerness. Such is the magic of lobster tails that the very mention of it leaves the food connoisseur craving for more. Preparing this delectable dish may apparently seem to be very difficult however in reality it is not that difficult. In fact one may be elated to know that making this dish at home is actually possible. Hence to feast one's senses one no longer needs to go to expensive food outlets, on the contrary one can enjoy it in the comfort of his or her own residence.

The preparation of lobster tails that one is about to learn is named Steamed Lobster Tails. The process is as follows:

Ingredients Required:
1/2 cup melted butter 1 tablespoon sea salt Four (6 ounce) lobster tails

Method of Preparation:
Boil about one inch of water at the bottom of a pot. Now add the salt and place a steamer insert so as to keep it just above the water level. Now arrange the lobster tails and cover the mouth of the pot. Steam this for eight minutes without any interruption. Serve the preparation with melted butter.Regale Your Guests with Royal Seafood Dinner There goes the preparation of a yummy seafood dinner item. This preparation will not only add to the variety of the dinner but also earn one the reputation of an adroit cook in the respective circle of acquaintances.

The seafood dinner is very rich in nutritional values and allows the fulfillment of desires maintaining the framework of a healthy diet. The seafood dinner in fact contributes in the overall development of one's health. It benefits the brain and profits one in more ways than one. The seafood needs to be restricted only in case of a woman who has conceived. Apart from that the seafood requires no other limitations and one can gorge on it as much as one wishes to. This dish will also enrich one's repertoire of culinary skills and items. Therefore the dishes cater to one's needs in more ways than one can imagine. Hence it's time to delight the senses with palatable dishes.

Friday, March 11, 2011

How You Can Plant Grape Vines

Doesn't the thought of relaxing with a tasty bottle of wine seem stylish? And the thought of being able to sip on a bottle of wine that you produced yourself does seem even better. It's not as complex as you might think to plant and grow a good grape vine that will generate grapes for you to generate wine with.
How large should your individual vineyard be? That's one thing you'll have to choose, but a great place to get started is with 12 vines or so. By planting some grape vines, you'll be able to generate an adequate amount of fresh fruit for a five gallon batch of home made wine. You'll start by getting year old vines from a local nursery. These will be dormant grape vines that were cultivated by the nursery in their fields. You need to buy these dormant vines in early spring while they're still dormant. This will give you time and energy to get them planted before the spring rains get started and they come to life and continue to grow all over again. It's also very important to acquire plants back in the ground before they come out of being dormant for the winter season. And having them planted just before the early new season rains will give them a little time to settle in before the growing time starts. If you are unable to plant them right away for some cause, keep in mind to keep the roots moist by spraying them with water.

Planting grape vines is a simple process. You start by digging a hole that's large enough to suit the full root structure in it easily. Then maintain the grape vine upright while you fill it in with garden soil. You should be certain the entire root system is covered, but allow any buds on the vine to stay exposed to the air. Tap the soil down gently to ensure stability. You can also build a small slope in the direction of the grape vine to make sure that water will run to the roots when it rains. This also makes it easier to water them and keep the soil wet.
As soon as your grape vines begin to grow you need to ensure the soil near them continues to be slightly humid. This will be based upon your position and the amount of rain you've received lately, but don't be worried to provide them a little extra water. This is certainly true if your soil is very sandy, as the water will run through sandy soil very quickly. Just determine the soil situation on a daily basis, and if it's dry, give them some water. Assuming that there's no standing water on your grape vines, extra water won't have any ill results.
It's also crucial to make certain the grape vines you have planted get a good amount of sun light. Select an open area where they can get sun all day long, and refrain from areas that receive a lot of dark areas masking them. These open zones will also often have very good air circulation, which your grape vines also require. Photosynthesis is what will allow your grape vines to create sugar within the grapes, and this sugar is necessary to making wine. Sugar is what turns into alcohol during the fermentation process.
With a little planning and hard work, you can turn that dream of making your own wine into a fact. And the quality of wine you created yourself is usually just a bit healthier than wine you buy.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

How to Improvise a Super Easy Homemade Pizza

Imagine, if you will, the scenario from whence this homemade pizza recipe came to exist. I was watching a movie with friends last Friday, and it was getting late. Towards the tail end of things, we were hit with hunger. The first instinct of my friends was to order in for food, in this case specifically pizza. But I couldn't allow that, seeing as I knew I could whip up something, even at this late hour.
Sure, my friends had their doubts, but that only served to fuel me making pizza even more. It's easier to just order pizza, they said, plus I didn't have any cheese around. Would I let their nay-saying deter me from making pizza? Of course not!
Now, of course, I faced a problem in that I didn't have an easy pizza recipe to turn to in this situation. Instead I decided to improvise. I grabbed some flour, some tomato sauce and some vegetables, and went to work.

Super Easy Homemade Pizza

Serves: 6
Cooking Time: About 10 minutes
  • ½ cup whole wheat flour
  • ⅓ cup lukewarm water
  • ½ cup tomato sauce
  • 1 small jar roasted red peppers
  • 1 small green pepper, sliced
  • ¼ cup black olives, chopped
  • ¼ cup broccoli, chopped
  • 2-4 tablespoons garlic, to taste
  • 1-2 tablespoons dried basil
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1-2 teaspoons red chili flakes (optional)
  • Black pepper, freshly cracked
  • Olive oil
  1. Pre-heat the oven to 450 degrees F.
  2. In a large bowl, mix together the flour and the water to form a basic dough.
  3. Roll out the dough until about ¼-inch thick and spread over a greased baking sheet. Spread a thin layer of tomato sauce over the dough.
  4. Spread your vegetables over the sauce. Add the herbs over top and drizzle the pizza with some olive oil.
  5. Bake the pizza for about 10 minutes, until the crust is crispy and the vegetables on top begin to brown. Serve and enjoy.
Naturally, I was a bit nervous removing this homemade pizza from the oven. Did this actually work? Is it edible? I removed the pizza and cut it up into individual servings. I gave a piece from this easy pizza recipe to each of my friends and anxiously awaited the results.
So what were their thoughts on my homemade pizza experiment? It was universal acclaim, at least amongst the three of them. Truthfully, I was surprised by how well this turned out, even without any cheese available. This was my first real attempt at making pizza from scratch, and I don't know why I did wait this long. Making pizza is a fairly simple process. Take a grain base, add some sauce and toppings, and bake until done.
I hope the reasoning behind me making pizza again is different, but I will absolutely be turning to this basic easy pizza recipe again. Pizza is an incredibly versatile medium, and there are too many sauce, cheese and topping possibilities for me to decide on one next. I will say that I don't think I will be ordering a pizza anytime soon though.
Your Turn: Do you make your own pizza? What are your favorite pizza toppings?

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Food in India, Sweets Food, and Food Franchise

A world of possibilities crops up when we speak about food in India. No wonder it is not only in cooking methods but also taste that food in India is different food from the rest of the world. An ideal blend of cultures and evolution throughout the ages is what is reflected in almost every dish specific to each region. Various civilizations that saw their dominance in the Indian sub continent did influence the way food is prepared including the varieties. The present form of food in India is all a result of this very development over the ages. With professional courses available for chefs and with Indian cuisines one of the most preferred food items in restaurants and hotels across the world, food in India will witness further makeover in the coming years. Yes, the aroma, the taste, the flavor of course will remain the same! It is the addition of more items that is the added bonus.

Food in India does not only include meals; it also includes snacks food, sweets food, chaat, namkeen, and the list goes on. When we speak of sweets food, you will come across an endless list of items. It may range from sohan halwai, balu shahi, dal barfi, laddoo, dhoda kaju, moti pak to shahi pinni,coconut barfi, patisa, kesar coconut barfi, sev badam, special gujia, kesar gujia, dhoda, banarasi laddoo, gulab jamun, rasgulla, and the list goes on.
Who doesn't like having gulab jamun, the most preferred sweets food not only in India but also in neighboring countries? Well, are you aware of the fact that gulab jamun is not originally an Indian sweets food? It owes its origin to Luqmat Al-Qadi, an Arabic dessert, which was brought to India during the Mughal era. Rosewater syrup is the most common item used to soak the milk solid ball; in certain areas, honey and saffron syrup are also used. Gulab jamun is the most common sweets food item served at weddings not to mention other festivities and celebrations.

Amid the Indian sweets it is the Bengali sweet that is the most savored. If you love rasgullas and if you have this item at home always, you are actually falling in love with this Bengali sweet item. Other Bengali sweet items that are equally popular are chhena toast, malai rabdi, pista king, rasmalai, chaka chak, fruit cup, kesar badam, malai king, mishti dahi, ras bhari, rasgulla, cham cham, sandesh, pakiza, petha, and more. Mishti doi is often served after meals in many Bengali homes.

If you are looking forward towards opening a restaurant serving all aforementioned items including other food varieties, going for a food franchise will well serve your purpose. You will no doubt spend money on the set-up, equipments, etc. but when you buy a food franchise, you get a readymade brand rapport. You can see people filling your food outlet right from day one. Go online to search for the best food franchise opportunities.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

How to prepare Tempting Indian Chicken Curry recipe ?

You even get tips from our grannies for keeping your kitchen neat and tidy. Our grannies even provide useful health benefits about the Indian food.
Chicken dishes are ideal and perfect for any occasion. The preparation of light usual chicken recipes remarkably long, as well as for some chicken, funky unusual ingredients. simple recipes will tickle your taste buds.
The composition described below for the chicken recipe is very good and health too. 
Enjoy the tempting flavors of Non Veg recipes from India giving mouth watering delicacies with the aroma of Indian spices. Experience the leisure of preparing lip smacking non vegetarian recipes with different methods of preparation. Get detailed recipe of Chicken Curry.

Method :    
Heat oil and fry the onions till well browned.
Add the masala and fry till the oil begins to seperate.
Now add the chicken pieces and salt and simmer till chicken is cooked.
When chicken is tender, add the cashewnut paste and bring to a boil.
Garnish with chopped Cilantro.
Ingredients :
1.     lb chicken
To be ground into paste :
1.     3 tbsp coconut
2.     3-4 red chillies
3.     2 green chillies
4.     1 lemon size ball of tamarind
5.     1 tsp cumin seeds
6.     1 tsp coriander seeds
7.     1 tsp poppy seeds
8.     5-6 flakes of garlic
9.     1" piece ginger
10.     2-3 cloves
11.     1" cinammon
12.     2-3 cardammoms
13.     Paste of 2 tbsp cashewnuts
14.     2 onions ,sliced finely
15.     Cooking oil
16.     Salt to taste
17.     Cilantro, chopped

One and Only Louisiana Praline Recipe

In the state of Southern Region of the United States of America called Louisiana there is a famous dessert where pecan is the main ingredient. This is called Praline. It is a candy made from pecan nuts and sugar syrup. Even before, a lot of people tasted this very delicious nut and the foods cooked with it. To name a few: burritos, pies and cereal.

We can really say that pecans are very useful in many ways. The most obvious delicious dessert created with this is praline candy. In fact, this is a good gift for your loved ones. Though, people get conscious when talking about desserts there is nothing wrong with taking some of it occasionally. Just like eating some praline during weekends, birthdays or holidays is not really bad. That is why it is good to get the ingredients of Louisiana Praline recipe and try it out right away.  

However, there are things that you should bear in mind before making this delicious sweet candy. Follow these and you will surely enjoy while cooking.

•    To taste it creamier, better and cook faster, you can cook butter with sugar and milk.

•    For recipe without butter just cook it for approximately 210 degrees. It is important to make sure that you are cooking it on the right temperature.

•    Don't let it go beyond the soft ball stage. If you do let it reach the hard ball or "thread" stage, it won't crystallize and be soft.

•    Prepare all ingredients ahead. Get pecans and vanilla ready.

•    Make sure to have plenty of waxed paper laid out. The spoon should be ready too. 

•    Spoon the pralines out on the waxed paper that has been put on a cookie sheet or large cutting board because the heat from the candy melts the waxed paper and you then have to clean wax off the kitchen counter.

•    Lastly, make sure to protect your table or counter for it might ruin it.

1- 1/2 cups sugar
3/4 cups light brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup + 2 T. Half and Half cream
1/2 stick butter
1 1/2 cups pecans
1 teaspoon vanilla


1) Mix all ingredients except the pecans and vanilla in a heavy saucepan. Make sure mixture becomes thick.

2) Stir until it comes to a boil, and then turn heat down to a low boil. Stir occasionally; spoon mixture up on sides of pan to melt any sugar that hasn't melted.

3) Cook until the mixture reaches 239 degrees with a candy thermometer. If you don't have a candy thermometer, bring it to the soft ball stage.

4) Remove from heat. Stir in the vanilla and the pecans. Stir until the mixture begins to thicken and becomes creamy and cloudy. Place a spoonful of pralines onto waxed paper to harden.

5) Usually, by the time the mixture turns cloudy, signaling that it is time to drop onto the waxed paper, it starts hardening too fast to drop correctly. You should then stir in about 1 - 2 tablespoons of warm water to thin the mixture. Do not add too much - just enough to make the spoonfuls drop and settle in a "puddle". You don't want them to look like chunks of rocks.

6) If cooked to the correct temperature, it won't take a minute to harden by stirring. If you don't cook them long enough, they remain "sticky" and never become firm. They should be firm, yet creamy. If you don't eat them all the first day then wrap them individually and store them in an airtight container.

This is one and only Louisiana Praline's recipe that would make kids and adults love you. It has been started since 17th century and passed down from generations to generations but still remain tasty and in demand. This is such an all time favorite dessert. Nothing compares!

Delicious Baked Buffalo Wings- A Healthy Recipe From The Diet Solution Program

Everybody loves buffalo wings, but with the deep frying they just aren't that healthy. These baked buffalo wings are a great healthy alternative to fried wings that you are sure to love. This recipe is directly from the Diet Solution Program from acclaimed nutritionist Isabel De Los Rios. 
 If you want to add more hot sauce or cayenne pepper, that is completely up to you.
1 lb chicken wings (preferably without skin)
1 tablespoon cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1 tablespoon Celtic Sea Salt
1/2 cup hot sauce
1 tablespoon butter
1. Fill a large pot half way with water and then add the first 4 ingredients.
2. Bring water mixture and wings to a boil and then boil for 15 minutes.
3. Transfer wings to an oven safe container coated with butter.
4. Bake wings on "Broil" for 15 minutes on each side. (For crispier wings, cook longer on each side, maybe 20 minutes per side).
5. While waiting for wings, combine the hot sauce and butter in a small pot and cook over low flame until melted.
6. When wings are done, shake ‘em up with the sauce and enjoy!
To see more delicious recipes like this, check out the Diet Solution Program, a revolutionary new diet system that is more than a diet, it's an entire lifestyle change. These recipes are a sure treat for the entire family. They are healthy and above all, they actually taste good! There are plenty of free recipes on the website so you can test them out for yourself and discover how incredible they actually are.

Potatoes Salads

"Red Skinned Potato Salad" - This creamy salad is made with red potatoes, which give this dish-chock full of melt-in-your-mouth bacon, bits of hard boiled egg, crunchy celery and spicy onion-a delectable, firm texture

All you need are this ingredients: 
2 pounds clean, scrubbed new red potatoes, 
6 eggs, 
1 pound bacon, 
1 onion, finely chopped, 
1 stalk celery, finely chopped, 
2 cups mayonnaise, 
salt and pepper to taste

And here are the instructions: 
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add potatoes and cook until tender but still firm, about 15 minutes. Drain and set in the refrigerator to cool. Place eggs in a saucepan and cover with cold water. Bring water to a boil and immediately remove from heat. Cover and let eggs stand in hot water for 10 to 12 minutes. Remove from hot water, cool, peel and chop. Place bacon in a large, deep skillet. Cook over medium high heat until evenly brown. Drain, crumble and set aside. Chop the cooled potatoes, leaving skin on. Add to a large bowl, along with the eggs, bacon, onion and celery. Add mayonnaise, salt and pepper to taste. Chill for an hour before serving.

Serves 12

That's it! Now you can try it for yourself! Hope you'll like it. See again next time.