I’m a Wisconsin girl so I like to think that I know cheese. It is one of the products the state is well known for and is something I grew up eating quite often, especially during the holidays. That was because we used to receive a 5-pound block of cheese every year as a Christmas present. Five pounds of cheese was a lot of cheese to eat, even for a family like ours who loved cheese but since we were usually given cheddar cheese I didn’t mind. Cheddar was my favorite cheese when I was a child and is still my favorite kind of cheese. Most cheese curds (at least the ones made in Wisconsin) are a cheddar cheese product. And even though the name suggests they might be a “less than tasty” item, they are delicious! Cheddar cheese curds are basically what cheddar cheese is before it is pressed into a block and aged (cheddar cheese you see in your grocery store is aged – usually at least 60 days and up to several years). It’s a very fresh product (think baby cheese or newborn cheese!) and it tastes best when eaten as soon after being made as possible. In my opinion cheese curds taste best the same day they are made but that’s not an option for a lot of people. I’m lucky enough to live near several cheese factories that make cheese curds so I go purchase them on the days they make them. Cheese curds are available in several flavors. Although the traditional yellow/orange cheese curds are the most popular and most widely available I’ve also seen and tried white cheddar cheese curds in addition to the following flavors: garlic, dill, jalapeno (they have a “kick” to them), Cajun (also have a “kick” to them), pesto, chipotle, and paprika. Cheese curds have a smooth texture. Plain cheese curds have a mild salty flavor. They come in their natural shape and form which is small random chunks. Although most cheese curds are made from cheddar cheese, colby, mozzarella, and monterey jack cheese curds are available. Although “fresh” cheese curds may be available at your local supermarket, it’s likely they are at least a week old by that time. Because cheese curds are a fresh cheese product they do start to lose their flavor fairly quickly. Cheese curds are best if eaten within a week of being made. If you don’t have the luxury of going directly to a cheese factory to buy fresh cheese curds order them online or by phone from a cheese factory that ships them the same day they make them. You’ll be glad you went to the trouble of ordering the freshest curds possible. One fun thing about cheese curds is that they “squeak.” A fresh cheese curd will make a squeaky noise while you’re eating it. That’s one of the reasons why kids love to eat cheese curds. Besides eating them fresh, another tasty way to eat a cheese curd is to deep-fry it (and yes, a deep-fried cheese curd is definitely not a “health food”). You can purchase special batter mixes made especially for cheese curds, but a general purpose batter mix like Golden Dipt All Purpose Batter Mix (made by McCormick) works fine. But personally, my favorite type of batter for deep fried cheese curds is a beer batter (can you tell I’m from Wisconsin?). If you haven’t had the opportunity to taste a cheese curd yet, I highly recommend trying them. Even if you are not a huge fan of cheese, you’ll probably like cheese curds because they a fresh, mild-tasting product. Happy eating!
Organic food is the food derived from animals and plants that have been grown and raised in accordance with the strict guidelines associated with government’s definition of the term, “organic.” In order to be certified as an organic food, food must be grown without the use of products such as manufactured fertilizers, synthetic or man-made pesticides, additives that control or modify growth, antibodies, and/or and livestock feed containing additives. Organic Foods Once Just a Niche Market It wasn’t that long ago that “eating organic” was something only a relatively small number of people did. Back in the 1960’s, life was changing. Women were beginning to work outside the home and the trend then was convenience. Processed foods meant a good meal could be delivered to the table in a fraction of the time. The market for frozen and processed foods literally took off. Organic food was definitely not something that most people gave much attention to especially since there no longer was enough time to visit the butcher, the produce vendor and the dairy farm. A quick trip to the supermarket could now provide a family with enough food for several days. And that’s how life continued, fueled by the need for speed and convenience. Organic Foods Go Mainstream Lately, people’s feelings towards the foods they eat are changing once again. This time, the change is being fueled by the feeling that people no longer know what they’re putting into their bodies. The news today is filled with stories of E. coli outbreaks, genetic food engineering, the potential dangers of eating foods that are shot up with growth hormones to make them bigger and better, and other frightening information. Tired of feeling out of control, eating organic has become chic and has definitely become the latest trend in eating among people from all levels of society. True organic food is more expensive than non-organic food, but the trade-offs are well worth the additional cost. Not only is organic food better for those who consume it, the people who eat organic foods claim these foods actually taste better than those grown and raised without this strict definition. In fact, eating organic is the best way and really is the only way to feel 100% confident about the foods that are consumed. Meeting the New Demand Today, organic food is big business and an ever-growing segment of the food industry. Farmers are changing the way they grow their foods to take advantage of this increased demand. Unfortunately for produce growers, it can take up to 2 full years for the land to cleanse itself of the synthetic pesticides and fertilizers that have been applied during all the years prior to growing organic. But the wait is a worthwhile trade-off as well. Organic foods are so popular that it’s no longer necessary to shop for them at specialty stores. In fact, large grocery store chains are constantly devoting more shelf space to meet the ever-growing needs of organic food devotees.
: What is wine exactly? Wine has been around the world for over 7000 years and is made from just 2 basic ingredients, yeast and grape juice. By far the majority of all wine is made from the juice of the grape, although some wines do use the skin, this mainly colour the wine( rose for example). How is wine made? Yeast is the main ingredient needed for fermentation yeast is what transforms the grapes into wine. Just as a point of intrest, there are actually wild yeast spores just beign carried all of the place by the wind and to make wine you just need an open container of grape juice patients and time. The result however, wouldnt be very pleasant to taste. There are a number of different strains of yeasts, numbering somewhere in 1000's and the types being used to make wine have been designed for this sole purpose. So yeast is actually a living organism that feeds off of sugars in the grape juice in a process called fermentation. When fermenting, yeast spores increase in numbers exponentially, this happens until the sugar content has been consumed. During this fermentation process, the sugars are converted into alcohol and carbon dioxide. There are various different flavors the yeast will lend to the finished wine product, the temperature when fermentation takes place, the particular strain of yeast used s well as a few other things. When all of the fermentable sugars have been exausted the yeast then falls to the bottom of the container where the fermentation process starts. The wine is removed, leaving the yeast, and is trasferred to another container to mature to await bottling.
Condiments are substances applied to food to improve or enhance flavor. They usually come in the form of powders, spreads and sauces. A condiment is typically squirted, sprinkled or smeared, with commercially prepared condiment products often packaged in plastic or glass containers. Some are served as single-serving packets too as what is common in cafeterias and airlines. Of course, BBQ parties and cookouts are never complete without a steady supply of condiments. Some of the more common condiments include ketchup, mayo, pickles, mustard, wasabi, vinegars, salad dressings and salt. Barbecue and hot sauces are other popular condiment choices used to complement or add flavor to dishes. Since people have different preferences when it comes to seasoning their meats, having an assortment of condiment products on hand when hosting a barbecue is always best. Condiments and Smashing BBQ Parties Nothing spoils a barbecue quicker than a shortage of condiments. Whether it's ketchup, hot sauce, mustard, relish or BBQ sauce, finding yourself running low on any of these items can spell disaster for a party. You see, a condiment gives food that added kick to keep people coming back for more. Further, half the fun of eating is being able to adjust the taste of the food to suit each individual's particular taste buds so without condiments, people will have a tough time managing this. Holding a hit barbecue event isn't easy. But if you keep your shelves well-stocked in the condiment department, you're halfway there. Here are other tips to ensure your next BBQ is a smashing success. • Get out that old BBQ grill that's been collecting dust in the garage. Fix the patio and wash all the utensils you'll be using before you start grilling. • Prepare the outdoor cooking recipes in advance. Visit the market and buy the freshest meats needed. • When it comes to cooking a whole chicken on the grill, stuff it with a half-filled beer can. The beer aroma will stick to the chicken and give it a great beer-y taste. If others don't appreciate it, have them slather up some condiments on the chicken. • When cooking burgers, put holes in the center so they'll cook thoroughly. The holes will close up once they're grilled so don't worry about it! • Shop around for great condiment and sauce products. Make sure to check out InsaneChicken. It's got an online catalog of the best condiments, hot sauces, salsas, rubs and marinades in town. Condiments play a huge role in the success of a BBQ party. For the best barbecue condiment selections, there's only one place to go really – InsaneChicken. It's got the Ass Kickin' Mustard, the Ingleby Farms Jalapeno Ketchup, the Smuggler's Run Jolly Rouge Chipotle Creme and a bunch of other mouth-watering condiment delights. Add life to your future barbecue parties – get your condiments and sauces from the best in the business – InsaneChicken. Ah, will someone please pass the 20 Pepper Hot Garlic Pickles please?
South Africans live from season to season, eating what the earth gives them. A variation in latitude and height above sea level as well as the effect of ocean currents causes a great variety of climatic conditions throughout the country. There are three main rainfall-regions, divided into a winter rainfall in the south western part of the country including the Western Cape, rain all year round along the southern coastal belt and a summer rainfall in the rest of the country. Rainfall varies between around 125 mm per year along the arid western coast and 1 000 mm a year on the eastern coast. Rainfall is irregular with less than 10% of the country receiving around 750 mm of rain per year. The other 90% receive less than this. The summers in South Africa are very hot with mostly cloudless days, but in the winter, only a few areas are frost-free. If you travel to South Africa during October to May (mainly) you can go to farms and pick your own fruit. Make sure you check what times they are open so you won’t be disappointed. During November you can watch out for Strawberries. December is the correct month for strawberries, raspberries, loganberries, boysenberries, cherries and peaches. In January you can pick black currents, apricots, cherries, raspberries and strawberries. February is the month for raspberries, strawberries, apricots, nectarines, peaches and apples. During the fall you can pick raspberries, strawberries, nectarines, peaches and apples and during April you can still pick some strawberries, apples and even grapes. So when can you expect to buy certain fruits? Don’t be caught out, just take a look at which fruit is in season during the year. Nectarines and plums can be bought from November through to April, while you can enjoy Apricots and Litchis between November and February. Other fruits you can enjoy during the summer months include peaches from October to February, grapes during the months of December to May, melons between January and March and mangoes from December to April. If you travel to South Africa during the colder months, you can sink your teeth into apples from March to September, oranges and grapefruit during the winter and spring months of April to November and grapefruit between April and September. If you are looking for something more sour, lemons is just the thing for you to get during the months of March to November. Easy peelers are available between April and September and my favourite, avocados, can be enjoyed from March to October of each year. Guavas can be bought in May while prickly pears are available during January and February. Pears you find most of the year, with the season running from January to October, while pineapples grow in South Africa all year round. If you love cherries, make sure you keep your eyes open. If you close it for too long, you will miss it! Cherry season is a short 6 weeks, between the months of December and the beginning of January. You can find pretty much most vegetables throughout the year. These include baby marrow, butternut squash, various types of pumpkin, green beans, various other beans, carrots, beetroot, broccoli, cauliflower, cassava, cabbage, cucumber, mushrooms, onions, potatoes, sweet potatoes, peas, spinach, sweet peppers, tomatoes, lettuce, mealies (white mealies and sweet corn, which is yellow) and many more. Potatoes are grown all over the country, so when one part has a winter rainfall and the other a summer rainfall, they transport the produce to the necessary area. Mealies are planted during November and harvested during the month of March. As this finishes, the sunflowers and wheat are planted. Make sure you know which fruits are in season so you know what to look forward to when you travel. All fruit and vegetables are filled with fibre, vitamins and minerals, so make sure you eat lots and lots of it. Enjoy!
Okay, you've decided you want to make money with Affiliate Marketing. So, you join some affiliate programs and start submitting free ads to newsletters and free advertising classifieds sites. You're going to make BIG money now -- right? Nope! Sorry! Just sending out a few ads is not going to do it. Not if you want to be a real success. You must first determine your passion. I mean other than making the money! What is your hobby? What do you know how to do REALLY well? What is your job? Everyone has something that is their own special talent. Find yours. You probably have more than one thing that you are very interested in and do well. See if you can find five (ten if you're really ambitious). Write them down in a list. Remember, you are going to be spending a lot of time working with this subject. Make sure you enjoy it! Go down each item on your list. Start writing a rough outline of everything you know about the topic. It doesn't have to be elaborate. This is just to give you an idea of how much information is available for a given subject. Try mind mapping. Write down the main subject of your idea. Draw a circle around it. Now, start thinking of sub-categories that are related to your main category. Draw a line from your main category and end it with a circle. Put the sub-category title inside this circle. Find as many sub-categories (and sub-sub-categories) as you can. Go through each of your interests with this procedure. Choose the one that you know the most about and that you can write about comfortably. What if you "think" you don't know enough about your topic? Then, do some research. Read books and magazines. Do some searches on the Internet. Who knows? You might find an area, a niche, that is just waiting for you to fill it with useful information. There's a lot more to affiliate marketing, of course. But the first step is to find your passion. Your "passion" doesn't have to be making money on the Internet. It can be cooking, sewing, billiards, or whatever. In fact, it's better if you find a niche that isn't in the online marketing arena because that's what nearly everyone else is doing. Make your topic unique. Make it yours. And make it your passion. It will pay you well.
“Organic” has of late become such a catchphrase that it has entered the vernacular of the everyday American to almost everyday use. It’s a word of which many people believe they know the meaning, but few do. A few seconds of hard contemplation produces a myriad of questions: What is unique about organic food as opposed to the garden-variety supermarket wares? And what about organic baby food? Is it significantly different or superior? What are the benefits? Can I trust the labels? Below run some frequently asked questions and brief answers; just doing my part to assist in your education… What is unique about organic food as opposed to the garden-variety supermarket wares? Essentially the differences on your plate take place in two spheres: additives and preservatives. The former can mean anything that changes the quality of the food in color, consistency, taste and characteristics. The latter is anything that keeps food fresh for longer amounts of time and is typically some sort of sodium product. Many additives, particularly food dyes, have been attacked as toxins. A handful of dyes have been made illegal on the American market due to reasons of human health. As the American diet is already dangerously high in sodium, there is no need for the consumption of further salts as preservatives. On the farm level, the differences become even more dramatic. Organic food contains no genetically modified organisms, has no trace of poisonous pesticides and in grown in environmentally safe soil free of chemicals. And what about organic baby food? Is it significantly different or superior? Organic baby food boasts all the same advantages as regular organic food listed above. Since baby’s body is much more sensitive to toxins than is an adult’s, the benefits of avoiding additives increase substantially. The elimination of additives and preservatives in organic baby food also quite simply means that there are fewer ingredients to which baby may develop allergies and that digestion of organic baby food is easier. Organic baby food is quick-cooked so that fewer nutrients will be lost, an unfortunate by-product of cooking food in general. Most organic baby food is salt - and sugar-free, and what baby needs more of either? There have been recently claims that organic baby food is lacking in iron at a 20 percent clip. This can be reduced, however, by making your own or feeding baby more iron-rich food. What are the benefits? Well, this is the selling point of organic product. Less salt means smaller chance of kidney, liver or blood pressure problems. Fewer toxins in your diet mean avoidance of certain industrial maladies. Preservatives have been shown to be dangerous (even potentially lethal) to your health, but only after occupying space in products for decades. Organic ingredients make it possible for the average consumer to understand exactly what they are eating. And, once you’ve experienced this phenomenon, you are unlikely to look at non-organic food labels the same way again. Can I trust the labels? This one is tricky. Just as there are zillions of lobbyists and concerned citizen action groups, there are zillions of corporate employees and attorneys finding ways around existing law. Simple research helps a lot to cut through the claims and counterclaims. Some information may surprise you. For example, if a baby food label is marked “chicken,” this means that chicken must comprise as little as forty percent of the ingredients’ total mass. If two ingredients are listed, the first need only make up ten percent and in the second less is allowable. It can get depressing. The way I figure it, check the website. If it’s loaded with flash, slippery promotional promises and a dearth of solid information, become suspicious. In general, small is better. With babies of six to nine months, a few vegetables and simple grain products a week suffices in tandem with breast milk or formula – a very small amount of organic product to find. Plus, a large supply is made up in little time at home. Does organic food taste better? Yes.
Wooden bar stools offer quality what ever location they are in, either in the bar or home. A good bar stool design is one that has a padded seat or removable cushion, as comfort is the name of the game and of course a bar stool that can blend into any back ground or interior. Most items of furniture manufactured from wood in many instances will complement almost any room. Think about the dйcor or themes you have employed in the past. Whether it’s traditional, country, uptown apartment, wooden bar stools really can fit in to most places. In traditionally designed rooms, darker woods or more complex design on bar stool legs or back rests will supply the affluent, yet comfortable design most at home in traditional styles. Padded seats or detachable cushions in deep vibrant colours will set nicely with most decors. With modern dйcor, bright or darkened wooden bar stools work well together in their respective light and dark back grounds. Some wooden bar stools also use metal trims in their fabrics, this has the advantage of making the bar stools very modern looking. If you want to incorporate wooden bar stools into a country styled dйcor, a 2 tone designed stool is what you are looking for and has stood the test of time and looks like it will continue for the foreseeable future. You can buy wooden bar stools with 2 coats of paint or just have the 1 coat to improve and harmonize the innate wood finish. Light woods and white or hunter green are the most popular. A deeper colour or rosewood finish can make an off-white colour finish fit in to the sheikest of interiors. Wooden bar stools are strong and can endure a lot of what gets thrown at them and will adapt to many decors. Wooden bar stools are the most versatile of all the different varieties of bar stool designs. Metal bar stools can’t really fit in to any dйcor that isn’t up market or post modern. When buying your bar stools don’t presume that you will have the same house or keep to the decoration plan so choose the style carefully. It's much more logical to invest in furniture that will last for ages. Wooden bar stools will be around no matter what trends hit your home. A simple change of upholstery or change of chair pad, and your wooden stools have had a makeover!
: The Zone Diet is founded on the idea of eating a balanced ratio of carbohydrate, protein and fat. By eating in the ratio of 40/30/30, meaning 40 percent carbohydrate and 30 percent each of protein and fat, the idea is that your metabolism is impacted to run at its most efficient level. The diet also emphasizes getting the right amounts of fruit, vegetables and lean sources of protein. The right combination of foods results in an increased metabolism and weight loss. Designing meals that meet these requirements can be tricky, but the program offers a range of ideas.
You can also purchase cookbooks with recipes intended for the followers of the diet as well. But some people still wonder what they are allowed to drink when following the diet. You can still drink juice and either low fat or skim milk, as long as you count the calories and grams of protein, fat and carbohydrates. But since our bodies are made mostly of water, water is the recommended drink. The health benefits of drinking enough water cannot be underestimated. Water helps to flush toxins out of the body, it keeps the cells and metabolism supplies with the water needed to work properly and it quenches thirst better than any other fluid you can ingest.
The Zone Diet guidelines require that followers drink at least sixty-four ounces (or eight cups) of fluid every day. If you are one of the many people who simply don't like the taste of water, there are other options for you. You can add a squeeze of lemon, lime or orange to your water to give it a little bit of extra flavor. Or, you can purchase bottled waters that have a slightly fruity flavoring to them so that they taste more like a seltzer than plain water. Pour them in a glass full of ice for a refreshing beverage. It's important, however, to read the labels, even for water. Since the Zone Diet guidelines require you to limit sugar and carbohydrates, you don't want to take in sugar unknowingly.
Carry a bottle of water with you wherever you go and refill it whenever it gets empty. Soon enough you can change your habit of drinking soda, tea or juice, especially when you see the good results in your weight loss efforts. If you are a coffee or tea drinker, you will need to make some changes as well. The Zone Diet guidelines instruct you to eliminate caffeine from your diet.
This change can be difficult and cause withdrawal symptoms like headaches. It might be a good idea to gradually start eliminating caffeine from your diet in the weeks before you begin following the Zone Diet guidelines. Decaffeinated coffee or tea will let you still enjoy the taste of coffee or tea without the caffeine.
The same is true of sodas. Regular sodas should be completely eliminated. They simply have too much sugar. Diet sodas come in enough different flavors that you should be able to find one that you like. However, you do need to switch to decaffeinated versions in order to improve your chances of success on the program.
Alcohol is one other beverage that will have to be limited or eliminated. There have been some studies that have shown that moderate alcohol consumption can actually have some positive effects on your health, particularly your heart. If you are currently drinking alcohol as part of a program to protect your cardiovascular health, you shouldn't stop without discussing it with a health professional first.
However, the Zone Diet doesn't require that you totally eliminate all alcohol from your routine, just that you limit it to occasional use. There's no reason that you can't continue to enjoy an alcoholic beverage from time to time. Just keep in mind that the more beverages that you replace with water, the more good you are doing for your body and the faster you are likely to see weight loss success.
When shopping for new barstool acquisitions, it’s always good to find reviews and information on the best bar stools, what to look out for when buying your bar stool and how to ensure you get the best quality stool for your money. With the tremendous amount of choices for bar stools on the market getting in a muddle is really easy and before long your head is melted and you end up settling for a bar stool that you didn’t even want in the first place. This is really easy to avoid by following these few easy to understand tips. No matter what kind of bar stool you are searching for, 2 things you need to watch for is how much you want to spend and what kind of bar stool you want for your needs. Once you have these 2 points straight in your head then you are less 1 headache. If it’s your home that the bar stool destined for then you probably have the style and design in mind that will suit your house dйcor. Simply by having a look the different rooms in your house and you then know what kind of stool would fit in. In terms of how much you want to spend it’s very simple, just keep an eye on what you are spending, try to keep a rough price in mind (a) how much you want to spend and if the price is to high try and fight the urge to rationalize spending too much if you find stools that look great but are far to expensive. If you don’t drive and have no of means of getting the stools home then you also need to add in the costs of delivery. When you start to shop for your bar stools pay particular attention to the quality of the materials the bar stools are constructed from. If it’s a local furniture store where you find the stools you like, do a couple of simple tests, Sit on the stool to test its sturdiness and to see if it’s comfortable. Pick the stool up to see how heavy it is, this can give you some indication on the strength and durability of the bar stool. If you're shopping online or through a catalogue be sure to ask them questions about the quality of the material, how they will be delivered and how much it will be or any other questions you may have. This is the main key o finding a good bar stool or ending up with junk. If the company is not giving you direct answers to you questions, stay away and find another company. You don't want to give that company your money, no matter how nice their barstools are! A good idea is to research bar stools on the net before buying from a store or online, check reviews and recommendations from good bar stools suppliers. There are many websites devoted to consumer reviews (marios-bar is a good choice to start with. This can be invaluable information as you make a final decision.
Fruit baskets are excellent gifts for all occasions. Whether you choose to purchase a fruit basket for a birthday, holiday, or any day, the receiver will surely enjoy the beautifully packaged basket of goodies. When looking for a fruit basket for a friend, family member, co-worker, or neighbor, consider the contents carefully, as well as the size and overall appearance. The first thing to look for when purchasing a fruit basket is the fruit itself. What type of fruit does the basket contain? If you are buying a fruit basket for a specific party, keep their preferences in mind. Also, if anyone has an allergy to a specific type of fruit or food, these items should be avoided. Finally, if you are planning to ship the gift basket, consider how well the basket’s contents will handle shipping. Keep in mind, more fragile fruits—especially berries—may not be the best choice, since they can possibly be crushed while the basket is in transit. Secondly, consider the size of the basket. If you are sending a fruit basket to a large family, then send a large basket. However, if you are sending a basket to an individual, carefully consider the size and the amount of fruit the basket contains. Far too often, lovely fruit baskets are sent to individuals who simply cannot consume the contents of the basket before the fruit spoils. Instead, consider a mixture of fruit with nuts, candies, and other goodies that have a longer shelf life. Thirdly, look to the recipient to determine his or her tastes. College students are the perfect recipients for fruit baskets, since they are most likely tempted to stray from healthier foods and indulge in junk food. If fruits and other healthier fare is located within arms reach, your student is more likely to consume a better diet. Also, individuals who are just moving to an area or find themselves in a new home appreciate fruit baskets, since the contents can be used to fill the refrigerator or cupboard that was previously empty. The elderly also enjoy fruit baskets, since the gift can be consumed and enjoyed instead of another gift that will serve to clutter or sit in disuse. Finally, look at the basket itself. Consider giving a fruit basket that uses a creative container that the recipient can use after the contents have been consumed. More and more these days, traditional baskets are being replaced with clever packaging ideas, like boxes, bags, pots, bowls, or any other lovely container that can be reused with ease. Also, keep in mind the space constraints of the recipient’s office or home. Fruit baskets are a popular gift for college students, especially around examination time, but keep in mind that a large, extravagant fruit basket may very well overwhelm a tiny dormitory room. For whatever reason, a fruit basket is the perfect gift. Although today’s gift baskets contain a good deal more than the simple apples and oranges of yesterday’s baskets, the thought is still the same. Strive to find baskets with unique contents that will tickle the fancy of the recipient, but will still provide him or her with foods and snacks that are health oriented. The gift of a fruit basket is one that requires a bit more thought than simply sending a gift card or monetary gift, and is guaranteed to be used at the end of the day. If you are in the market for a fruit basket, know that there are endless varieties and options out there, so everyone is sure to find a basket that suits the recipient’s every need.
We've all heard that there are rules to selecting the right wine. Those rules are based on the type of meat or fish main course, cost, the snootiness factor and other less savory snobbery. Heck, I'm no snob when selecting just that right wine to go with my meal. I have 1 rule that fits no matter what's on the menu. But before I give you Franks rule of wine selection, let's review a few of the more recognized rules. Red with meat, white with fish. Yea, this is a good direction to take all right. It's good if you like your meals color coordinated. Heck, I'm satisfied if my husband is color coordinated and don't really care if my meals are on a specific color spectrum. Price determines quality. OK, I made this one up after having a wine steward get almost indignant at my wine selection because it didn't have the "nose" of a truly "good" wine. A nose of course is what's on people's faces that they look down on us less sophisticated wine connoisseurs. Apparently wine also has a nose and it simply means the way it smells. The difference between us and them however is that we say smell and they say "bouquet." Well la tee-da. How about using the Sommelier of the restaurant to select your wine? If you get one with a sense of humor, this is an excellent way to find new wines to enjoy. A Sommelier is someone who is a trained and knowledgeable wine professional. They understand all the aging, grape selection, part of the country and wine making techniques that basic wine drinkers like myself just aren't interested in studying about. A great sommelier will not focus on price but on what types of wine you enjoy. What you're eating will be considered but actually, a good Sommelier is looking to select a wine based on my 1 rule of wine selection. That 1 rule of wine selection trumps everything else in picking a wine drink. That number 1 rule is ... GET SOMETHING YOU LIKE AND ENJOY! That's it! Who cares if it's expensive except the restaurant that gets the huge mark-up price. You're going to drink it and if the wine is something you've enjoyed before or at a previous special occasion, you will start to reminisce. You will begin to walk down memory lane and if that special someone you're dining with happens to be your lifes partner of many years, they too will begin to remember back when. The romance is rekindled not by the wine but by the memories. There is a certain magic to a wine that can be tied back into your own personal history. So what kind of wine goes with my chicken salad sandwich? I'll take the one I like...the one with the magic.
Coffee and tea has long been a traded commodity in the orient. It has been considered as a drink only for royalties and kings. These two commodities are processed in almost the same manner for it to become a soothing and relaxing drink. Knowing Good Quality Specialty Coffee and Tea Specialty coffee and tea should be made from the best coffee beans and tea leaves in the market. Coffee and tea experts believe that the best brews come from homegrown and handpicked batches. But this handpicking process can just be a myth since it really does not affect how the taste and texture comes out. The one thing that could affect the flavor and texture of coffee and tea is the climate since this can affect the humidity and moisture of the raw products. It is important to know the quality of specialty coffee and tea since top quality produce are prized at a bigger rate than that of mediocre quality ones. Having to know the difference can give you the edge in the specialty coffee and tea market by going to specialty coffee and tea shops that are willing to give you the right value for your money. A good hint to detect a medium or a mediocre type of specialty coffee and tea commodity is the smell of burnt beans from roasting. These kinds of produce are intentionally burnt because it gives out a good flavor if it is in this state. Adding Flavor to Your Specialty Coffee and Tea In the past decade the specialty coffee and tea business has exponentially grown. Many specialty coffee and tea shops have been sprouting and eating up each other’s neighborhood market shares; each of then brewing and concocting their own original flavors and mixes. The way coffee and tea is consumed has drastically changed over the years. Before coffee and tea was only taken hot and straight out of the coffee maker or from an instant foil pack. Now, specialty coffee and tea drinks are made hot or cold depending on the consumer’s preference. Vast variety of flavors and other ingredients such as grounded biscuits and whip creams are added to the drink to have that perfect specialty coffee and tea concoction. But these are just flavors and ingredients to enhance the specialty coffee and tea experience. A good flavored specialty coffee and tea should not be overpowered by the taste of its other ingredients. The aroma, texture and flavor of the original coffee and tea must still be present to give coffee and tea drinkers the full experience.
I am one of those people for whom decision making and life direction has always come a little slower. One of the biggest decisions that took me a while to figure out was what I wanted to be "when I grew up." Keep in mind that I had been grown up for quite some time when I finally figured out how I wanted to spend my days and hence my life. I was nearing my thirties when I finally decided to go to culinary school with the hopes of becoming a pastry chef. So I entered a two year culinary program having no idea that I'd learn to love caramel and many other things as well. In some ways, deciding to go to culinary school was a very random decision for me and in other ways it made total sense based on what I wanted to do. I have always loved food and I helped my mother in the kitchen from the time I was able to be of any help (and perhaps long before then). My jobs in the kitchen were usually something glamorous like washing the potatoes or stirring the soup. But I loved it. I loved every moment that I got to be in the kitchen helping my mother prepare good meals that people would enjoy. I especially loved helping my mom prepare desserts for our family and guests after we finished with dinner. I loved helping her make her now-famous caramel apple pies especially. For me, culinary school was a time when I fell in love with foods like caramel, fruits and certain vegetables even more than I had before. I guess I just became more and more fascinated by everything that could be done with food the more I worked with food. I did well throughout the program, but I began to excel around the time that we began focusing on desserts and pastries. I'm not sure what it is about preparing desserts for people that excites me, but it does. My dream quickly became to be the head dessert and pastry chef for an upscale restaurant in my town. By the time the second year of culinary school began, I focused all of my efforts on specialty desserts and pastries. I loved the freedom my professors gave me to work independently on recipes of my own. I was busy coming up with an even better caramel glazed pastry and with perfecting my late mother's famous caramel apple pie. I loved it. I truly learned to love caramel and other foods in culinary school. If you have any amount of fascination with good food like I did, then I suggest you head off to culinary school as soon as possible.