Marinades, Sauces And Dressings: Balsamic Vinegar Compliments More Than You May Realize

A balsamic vinaigrette dressing can turn a nominal green salad into a refreshing mixed fresh Spring salad with a zest of Italian flair. Using aged balsamic adds a bit of gourmet into anyone’s kitchen. Send a bottle to a friend for a gift and you may turn their culinary world upside down. “The keynote to happiness within the four walls that make any home is plain, wholesome, well cooked food, attractively served.” — Louis P. De Gouy Balsamic Vinegar has an almost other worldly flavor that enhances nearly any food it touches. You can see a visible change on the face of someone who is trying Italian balsamico for the first time. Their face is transformed by awe and delight. …

Make Grilling A Healthy Experience

Without a doubt there is something very relaxing and pleasurable about cooking and eating grilled food. There are countless ways you can turn your grilling not only into a flavorful and enjoyable way to cook, but there are also many healthy and tasty alternatives. Like anything else in life, what you put on your grill is a choice. Grilling healthy first means that you have decided to eat healthy. Cooking on a grill can be a great way to reduce fats on while adding wonderful flavor however we must also be careful when grilling as there can be certain risks if precautions are not taken. Eating healthy always begins with choosing healthy foods that are low in fat and using …

Microwave Cooking is the Wave of the Future

When it comes to cooking there are few tools that are more versatile in the kitchen than the microwave. This device offers so many functions when it comes to cooking that most people never bother to utilize. It’s sad really. In most homes, the microwave has been relegated to doing duty as a meat defroster, popcorn popper, and coffee warmer rather than using is as the fabulous device for actual food preparation that it really is capable of being. Before you set up to change your ways, you need to understand that when it comes to microwave cooking, not all microwaves were created equal. Wattage is vitally important as is the quality of your microwave. The average el cheapo microwave …

Mongolian Hot Pot – More Uses For Your Fondue Pot

As much as you love your fondue pot, you can’t dunk bread cubes into hot melted cheese every night. On those nights when you need a break from cheese fondue, why not use the fondue pot for something else. Mongolian Hot Pot is a great meal that can be cooked in an electric fondue pot. It is said that Mongolian Hot Pot was originated by the ancient Mongols who would cook their food in boiling water. They would season the water with the dry spices that they carried along with them on their many journeys and battles. Those Mongols probably would not recognize this Mongolian Hot Pot recipe but it’s easy to make and delicious. To make Mongolian Hot Pot …

Deep Fryer – Pieces of Wisdom

For a time I worked in a convenience store as a clerk and cook and I used a deep fryer quite a bit for cooking battered chicken and French fried potatoes. Of course the chicken doesn’t start out battered. It comes delivered frozen in big cardboard boxes. Before the chicken is ready for the cooking part it must be prepared and time to thaw out. Each piece of chicken is rinsed in cold water, then put in a vat of tenderising, salty water to soak for several hours in a refrigerated area. It is again rinsed and kept cold, until needed for cooking. When needed for cooking the chicken is breaded in a special spicy flour mix, dipped in spice …

Decorating Xmas Trees With Cookies and Candy

Decorating xmas trees with cookies and candy is a great way to give your tree that personal touch. It is creative and the results can be astounding in terms of their creative impact. Decorating an artificial tree with baked goods is one way to make it look more homey and real. A slim christmas tree really looks great with decorations made out of slim wrapped candies. The snowy color of shortbread confections also plays off nicely against any color of tree including the artificial white christmas tree. Decorating xmas trees with food goes back to the times before Christ was born. Offerings of food were often placed along sills and windows to feed the good spirits and protect from the …

Deciding To Go To Chef School

If you enjoy cooking and want a job that doesn’t seem so much like work, perhaps a chef school can give you the skills and experience you need to cook in top notch restaurants around the country or even the world. Every restaurant has several cooks on staff, but the curriculum at a chef school will elevate you and your paycheck well beyond the level of any common short-order cook. Also, a quality chef school can prepare you for a number of prestigious positions in the food service industry. Many chef school campuses also teach the business side of the culinary arts. Many graduates of chef school go on to own their own restaurant, which gives them the freedom to …

Culinary Training Isn’t A Cakewalk

A career as a chef can be fulfilling and challenging, and if you have a passion for food culinary training may be a perfect fit. However, it isn’t easy. Anyone who has attended a culinary institute can tell you that the education you receive goes far beyond simply learning how to throw together a few meals. In fact, you learn much more than just cooking. Being a successful chef also involves being able to manage your kitchen properly, work well with your staff and understand nutrition, food purchasing and plenty of other things that go beyond the stove or oven. Culinary training can be an eye-opening experience for many students as they prepare for their career in the food and …

Culinary Traditions Of The Caribbean Islands

Authentic Caribbean cuisine is truly an excellent representation of all the cultural influences the Caribbean Islands have experienced since Christopher Columbus’ landing in the late 1400’s. With a fine mixture of French Island and African recipes, Caribbean cuisine is widely prepared and enjoyed by people of all nationalities, in many areas of the United States and the world. Caribbean food and culture was forever changed when the European traders brought African slaves into the region. The slaves ate mostly the scrap leftovers of the slave owners, so not unlike the slaves in the United States they had to make do with what they had. This was the birth of the more contemporary Caribbean Cuisine. The African slaves blended the knowledge …

Culinary Traditions Of South America: Argentina

Argentina is South America’s second largest country, snugly situated between the Andes mountain range, the Pacific Ocean, and the South American countries of Brazil, Paraguay, Uruguay, Brazil, and Chile. Being situated in such a manner, Argentina is exposed to many different cultural influences from all directions, including countries all the way across the Pacific. Spain took it upon themselves to permanently settle in the country in the late 1500s, and remained there until Buenos Aires formally emancipated themselves in 1853. One of the most remarkable differences between Argentine Cuisine and exotic cuisines from around the world is the heavy influence that the cuisine of the Italian and Spanish cultures had on it. Startlingly enough, due to the influence of the …

Cookware – What’s New In Cookware?

As in most other industries, the cookware industry are constantly coming out with new lines and innovations. Some of the new lines are only available in gourmet or specialty shops and are sure to be expensive. Regalware has a new cast iron cookware with a twice-fired ceramic exterior. It’s available in Royale Blue or Brick Red. As opposed to older cast iron cookware, this new ceramic exterior will work on any cooking surface, including glass top stoves. I had to give up my old-fashioned black cast iron skillets when I bought my new stove because I didn’t realize how badly they could scratch the surface. Ceramic coating keeps its good looks for years. The interior of the cookware has a …

Cooking On the Grill

Summertime is rapidly approaching. This means it is time to begin preparing meals without heating the house whenever possible. If you haven’t considered the value of cooking on the grill in the past, perhaps now is a great time to adjust your way of thinking. Cooking on the grill is a great way to keep the heat of cooking outside your home as well as to bring the family together for the entire cooking process. Moms read: this is a great way to get dad to help out with meal preparation. While this is said somewhat in jest, there is some truth to the fact that men are much more inclined to slave away over a hot grill than a …

Cooking for Two

Whether you are cooking for two out of a sense of romance or necessity you will find that there are many resources online and off when it comes to finding the perfect combinations for those terrific twosomes. One thing to keep in mind however is that when cooking for two, it is sometimes best if two are doing the cooking. This gives cooking an opportunity to become a communication event rather than a chore. Despite the fact that there are many resources and recipes available to those that are cooking for two there are also equal occasions to take traditional recipes that are designed to feed four and make them an opportunity to stretch your food dollars even further. By …

Cooking for Special Occasions

We all have those moments in our lives when we feel as if everything needs to be exactly right. It is these moments that we often refer to as special occasions. When it comes to cooking for special occasions, many of us find that we drop the ball in our anticipation and feel as though we have ruined the moment. While this is often far from the truth, it does serve to diminish the moment in many of our minds. For this reason, you need to work up a repertoire, if you will, of simple to make special occasion cooking recipes. You will be shocked and amazed at all the sinfully rich and delicious meals and side dishes that are …

Cooking for Little Ones

Cooking for toddlers and growing children presents some unique challenges along the way. While you want to provide them with those ever so important nutrients, it is often difficult to get them to eat those foods that are best for their growing bodies. We are all probably well aware of the food pyramid and the number of servings our children need of healthy grains, proteins, fruits, vegetables, and calcium products. Getting them to eat these nourishing products is another matter all together unfortunately. The good news when cooking for children is that you do not necessarily need to incorporate all the important nutrients into dinner food. The truth of the matter is that raw cucumbers, which are thinly sliced and …

Cooking for Crowds Shouldn’t be a Frightening Proposition

Most people balk at the idea of cooking for large crowds of people. With images of huge stockpots boiling over and becoming chained to a hot stove and oven for countless hours on end, it’s no wonder that so many people avoid the idea of cooking food for large crowds with more tenacity than they avoid being last in the dinner line. The good news is that it doesn’t have to be the frightening proposition that so many make it out to be. When it comes to cooking for a large crowd, the planning phase is the most important. You absolutely must plan your meals when feeding a large group of people. This goes far beyond the notion of spaghetti …