Quick And Healthy Spring Dishes To Try At Home

If you love food, but you don’t have much time to rustle up culinary delights when you get home from work, look no further. With these simple, quick recipes, you’ll be able to enjoy a nutritious, tasty meal with minimal fuss.

 

Sizzling salads

There’s a common belief that salads are dull. But this doesn’t have to be the case. A salad is a great idea for a warm evening. It takes minutes to put together, and you can add all kinds of vegetables. Add flavour with dressing, and try and vary your ingredients each time. You could create your own version of a classic Caesar or Nicoise salad. Or grill some chicken and pancetta and add bell peppers and red onions for a colourful feast. If you’re after a filling dish, make a cold rice or pasta salad.

 

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Stir fry dishes

Stir fry is one of the easiest ways to pack in your 5-a-day in a single meal. There are so many options and this dish is suitable for vegetarians and meat eaters. Popular sauces include black bean, honey and soy and hoisin, but you can make your own if you wish. Add some heat with condiments, such as Dorset Naga Chilli Sauce, or sweet chilli dip. Go for Asian flavours with bok choi, water chestnuts and bamboo. Or stick to traditional favourites such as peppers, mushrooms, onions and carrots. Chop up some tender stem broccoli and sprinkle over a handful of beansprouts. You can create a tasty vegetable medley, or add some chicken, beef, pork or duck. Salmon is a fantastic choice for those who prefer fish to meat. Serve with rice or noodles for a delicious, healthy meal, which will be ready in minutes.

 

ginger beef stir fry

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Barbeque fare

When the days heat up, it’s tempting to get the barbeque out and gather friends and family around. Most people think about burgers and sausages when a barbeque is mentioned, but there’s so much more you can do with your grill. Try out different marinades, and widen your range of meats. Try fish and poultry, as well as vegetables. Cut up some peppers, onions, mushrooms and courgettes and get some skewers out. Chicken, beef and pork kebabs are an excellent option for parties. Tuna, cod and salmon steaks make a fantastic alternative to red meat. Serve with new potatoes and a freshly prepared salad or some zesty couscous. Try smoky chicken wings, juicy ribs and halloumi skewers for last-minute gatherings.

 

barbeque

 

Light pasta dishes

Pasta is a winter favourite, but it can also deliver in the summer. Swap hearty, heavy wine-based tomato sauces for light, fresh flavours. Over bake cherry tomatoes on a medium heat with garlic, oregano and olive oil. Boil some fresh tagliatelle for 2-3 minutes, drain and add the tomatoes. Season with salt and pepper and mix together. Alternatively, keep things simple with a sauce made from lemon juice, a knob of butter and olive oil. Toss your cooked pasta through the sauce, grind some sea salt and sprinkle parmesan to finish.

 

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Most of us make an effort to be healthy when it comes to spring, and these recipes are perfect for cooking up nutritious meals in a hurry.

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14 Tips and Tricks To Make Your Food More Delicious

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We spend over 3 and half years of our lives eating. What does that mean (other than the fact that we humans love our food!) It means that you might as well make these years totally and utterly enjoyable! Read on for 14 tips and tricks to make your food more delicious, and those years the best of your life!

 

Enjoy a three-course meal

There is something so luxurious about a three-course meal. Maybe it’s the fact that it reminds us of a posh restaurant or a wedding breakfast! However, three courses not have to be reserved for such events. You can easily whip up your own instead. Take your normal dinner. Add a fruit salad, or a prawn cocktail to the beginning. Or make a plate of mozzarella and juicy slices of tomato like the Italians do. Your third course can be a dessert you’ve made yourself. If you’ve had fruit in your starter, try something chocolatey. Or if you want something you can make at home quickly, how about Eton Mess?

 

Carry sauces on a flight

Here is an interesting fact about flying. Did you know that inside the cabin, your taste sensitivity is reduced by around 30%? That gives you only 60% of your normal tasting capabilities. This is because the air is so dry in a plane’s cabin. So, in-flight food might not be all that bland, but it could well taste like it is! Make up for it by taking your own seasoning and sauces onboard. Just be sure to put them in clear plastic bottles, like the type you store your shampoo in when you holiday! Pepper, soy sauce and hot sauce are all great options. You’ll be the envy of everyone else around you. Make sure you take enough to share with your neighbours.

 

Consider the proximity effect

Have you ever heard of the proximity effect? It is a term made up by the writer Dan Pashman. Dan wrote the book “Eat More Better: How to Make Every Bite More Delicious”. In the book, he explains that the flavours closest to your tongue will be the strongest and most accentuated ones. So, consider cheeseburger. Most come with the cheese on top, but what about if the cheese is the best part for you? Then put the cheese on the bottom. Do this with all your other meals and snacks too. Just remember; best stuff on the bottom!

 

Order fresh

There is no debate to be had here. Fresh food is the best! Take the food in Italy, for example. Because they have a great climate for growing fruit and veg, the produce you’ll eat over there will be incredible. Rather than being sprayed or injected with chemicals to make it last the length of transport to your country, it is authentic. It is just as nature made it.

Fresh prevailing as the best doesn’t just go for fruit and veg, however. It also goes for meat, and fish especially. If you can’t get to the sea, however, there are other options. You could order online your fish online, such as with these fresh products from Citarella.

 

Cook for yourself

Convenience meals do just what they say on the tin; they are convenient! You can pop them in the microwave for a few minutes and go back to find a cooked meal. Brilliant! However, there is a catch. Of course there is. In order for them to stay fresh for a few days, and to be warmed up so fast, they have to have extra chemicals inside them. These meals are often also packed with sugars, salt and sweeteners to make them extra tasty. While this is great news for your tastebuds, it’s not so good for your health. And if you know that what you’re eating is very unhealthy, it can ruin your enjoyment of the meal anyway. Nobody enjoys eaters guilt. Instead, cook for yourself. Then you know exactly what has gone into the meal.

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Don’t be scared of anything

Sugar and salt are bad for the human body and our health in large quantities. However, pretty much everything is okay for us to eat if we take it in small quantities. And, of course, is we accompany the treats with healthy things, like fruit and veg. Never be afraid to eat a slice of cake; just don’t say yes every day and you’ll be fine. Life is too short.

 

Add chopped nuts

Chopped nuts are one of those ingredients that go with lots of different things. They add a nutty flavour, obviously, but also add some great texture. Instead of making chocolate brownies, make chocolate brownies with pecans. Or top them with a layer of homemade peanut butter. Meanwhile, looking at savoury dishes, cashews go great in curries. Salads also can be jazzed up with nuts. Walnuts are a good option.

Don’t forget seeds too. Sunflower seeds are lovely with lots of different dishes, or alone as a snack.

 

Stand your crispy food up

This might sound like a weird one, but bear with us! Once you take food out of where it was made crispy, the steam inside it begins to turn to water. And what does water do to crispiness? It makes it soggy, of course. However, you can counteract this by cutting your food in half and standing it up, like a mountain of deliciousness. So, for a crispy bacon sandwich, for example, cut it in half and then stand it up. This shape prevents condensation, which in turn prevents water and sogginess. Hurrah!

 

Accompany your food with the right drink

Wine recommendations at restaurants aren’t just made based on what they have too much of in stock! There are logical, substantial reasons. For example, red meat packs a particularly strong and punchy flavour. This means that it can handle being accompanied by something equally strong, like red wine. Not only can it handle it, but they both also accentuate and improve the taste of the other. Conversely, white meats tend to be more delicate. This goes for chicken, but also for fish, which is particularly delicate. For these dishes, white wine is a safer bet. Obviously, this isn’t a hard and fast rule. There are exceptions on occasion; this article explores what they are.

 

Brown doesn’t just always burnt

Once you start to see your food turn brown, it can easy to think that means it’s burning. However, browning means great flavour. Monitor the development of colour closely by using a glass dish or bowl. This is especially important for savoury food like bread, and also for things like cakes and pies, no matter what the filling inside them. Plus, sometimes things taste better a tad burnt. Did someone say toast?

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Reprogramme your tastebuds

Our tastebuds can get accustomed to what they taste the most often. So, if your diet is laden with fats and sugars, healthier things can seem unappealing. Reprogramme yours by gradually phasing out some of the bad foods, while slowly phasing in the healthier things. Doing it slowly, rather than all at once, will make it easier on you.

On the other hand, many people have tried cutting something out of their diet all at once. While this is tougher on them, the effects are incredible. Some people who stop eating any sugar for a month and then try it again report that it now tastes horrible to them. This is a prime example of tastebuds being reprogrammed.

Challenge yourself by giving up something you love for one month. You might be astounded by the results!

 

Eat what you actually like

Health reasons aside, it’s a massive shame to spend your life eating food you don’t really like. Happily, the health benefits of most foods can be replaced with a different food. So, if you really don’t like oranges, that is a shame because they’re a top source of Vitamin C. However, things like strawberries and red peppers also have loads of Vitamin C in them! Don’t waste your time eating food you hate; eat food you love! As we’ve already mentioned, moderation is the key.

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Blanch your strong veggies

If you don’t like the taste of certain strong vegetables, blanching them could be the solution. It basically just consists of popping them in lightly-salted boiling water for a minute or so. This should then be followed by however you want to cook them, be that in a pan or in the oven. Do this for things like cauliflower and broccoli to make their taste more enjoyable to you.

 

Never miss out the marinading

In the food world, marinating and meat are the very best of friends. Before you cook your meat, let them marinate for at least a few hours, if not a full day. During this time, the meat with soak up all of the flavour. This means that rather than the flavour sitting on the top layer, it will go right through to the centre! Marinating also helps meat be more tender and more moist.

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Feel Guilty Later- Here Are The Most Delicious Treats You Should Eat This Evening!

It’s fun to treat yourself to scrumptious foods, especially after a hard day. We’re not saying you should do it regularly, but treating yourself is sometimes good to put a smile back on your face. It’s also great if you have people over, or want to treat your family at the end of the day. Here are some delicious treats and desserts you should have after dinner tonight!

Pancakes

If you want something which will really put a smile on your face, you could make some pancakes tonight. The delicious fluffy dessert is quick to make, and you only need eggs, flour, and milk to make the filling. You can then add different toppings such as Nutella, maple syrup or sugar and lemon, or research about other ideas for pancakes. Try and add some fruit to make them a little more healthy, or you could even make some savoury pancakes with cheese and bacon.

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Waffles

Another great treat for tonight is waffles as they are delicious and easy to make. Some people even use a waffle maker to save cleaning up later. If you add toppings such as maple syrup or treacle, they can really taste delicious. The treat even has its own day because they are so yummy. You can buy them ready made too, and just add ingredients later.

Waffles with Strawberries

image source: wikimedia commons

Ice Cream Sundae

If you fancy a delicious treat tonight, you could always make your own ice cream sundae. All you need is a yummy ice cream brand such as Ben and Jerry’s, or some plain vanilla ice cream would be great too. Then you can add some delicious toppings such as fruit, sauces, and chocolate. It is a great treat to make with friends or family members when they come over. You could even have a competition of who can make the best one. If you want some inspiration, you could visit sites such as this Martha Stewart.

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image source:http://www.freestockphotos.biz/stockphoto/17146

Donuts

You could make some donuts this evening as a special treat. They are quite easy to make and are delicious when hot. However, if you like, you can buy them ready made from a favourite chain, and then just make them extra special with some ice cream and some sauce. They are perfect with some sugar, and will be ideal for all the family.

Doughnuts :)

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Brownies

One of the most popular desserts around, brownies will really fulfill your chocolate desires. You could make your own by following recipes like these from barkingmad.com. You could add ingredients such as raspberries, oreos or peanut butter to make them tasty. Or you could even buy ready made brownies and enjoy them with cream or hot custard. Brownies are also delicious when eaten with a nice pot of tea, so enjoy one while relaxing in the evening.

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These delicious treats should only be consumed occasionally as they are packed full of calories. If you need some more ideas, you could find some recipe books with great treats for you to try and make tonight.

 

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Ways to Prepare Meals for Your Loved Ones

There are several ways to prepare a meal for your loved ones. The most common one is to cook them yourself. This includes all homemade cooking that is done by you or anyone in the household. Usually, the meals cooked at home range from simple to difficult. Examples of these meals include fried meals, oven baked meals, stew, or soup.

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Though there are times when you are not in the mood to cook and just want to end the day doing nothing. You can choose to have this day your holiday and eat on a restaurant with the whole family. This is a great way you and your family can try something new to the taste buds. Go buffet if your kids have a great appetite. Fine dining is also an option to experience the luxury and joy of eating on a candle lit table.

Depending on the occasion, meals served for a family gathering requires time and preparation. If in case you run out of time cooking and preparing the other meals on your menu list, swiggy offers food ordering from some of the best restaurants, thus it will save you some time to prepare yourself for the party.

However, it is very important that your family to have a healthy meal. So here are some tips to prepare meals for your loved ones.

Plan

Cooking up a whole week’s worth of meals is no joke, so make a list of the meals scheduled for the whole week. Making a weekly meal list will create a variety of food to be served on the family table.

Prepare

Clean and sort out the food in your fridge so you will know what to buy in the grocery or supermarket that will last for a week. Buy fresh fish and enough amount of meat and chicken.

Preparation is the key to success to healthy eating. Do not forget to include vegetables in your meal. Cut the pork meat/beef and chicken into desired sizes and apportion them according to your scheduled meal before freezing.

Cook

Steaming preserves nutrients better than any other cooking method, best for fish and shellfish.

Avoid overcooking veggies in your soup.

Snacks

As much as possible stay away from junk foods, serve fruits in season.

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Vacuum Food Sealer to Lengthen Food Shelf Life

With a vacuum pack machines, the benefits are obvious, both in financial and quality terms.

Vacuum packing food produce is important when it comes to the process required to produce, prepare, package, store and deliver food. Using a vacuum food sealer, you can reduce the air surrounding a food product and thus significantly reduce the growth of aerobic bacteria. Not only that, but you can keep the entire product together including its juices and reduce the bulk size of the product to a bare minimum.

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Vacuum food sealers are a very popular choice with food manufacturers who want to extend the shelf life of products which can include raw meat, fish, cheese and cooked foods. Using a vacuum food sealer not only lengthens the product’s shelf life enabling it to be stored for longer or delivered to further destinations in a fresh condition, but it also keeps food in a safe and hygienically clean condition. The reduction of bulk is another reason why food manufacturers consider the vacuum food sealer to besomething they can’t manage without.

Vacuum food sealers evacuate the air around the product which, in turn, increases the shelf life. As well as removing the air, the vacuum food sealer seals the vacuum bag or barrier pouch which keeps the product intact.  The package itself provides protection to the product by keeping out the surrounding atmosphere of oxygen, bacteria, fungi and moisture. The product is placed in the bag, the bag is then placed in the vacuum food sealer and air is extracted before the bag is then sealed with the product safely inside.

With the variety of products that can be vacuum-packed, the vacuum food sealer themselves come in all shapes and sizes, all of which can be supplied by First Food Machinery. Table-top vacuum food sealers are ideal for small products or small quantities whilst larger machines offer to suit a more industrial operation, with easy to clean features.

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How Can I Improve The Safety Of My Food & Drink?

Whether you’re constantly chugging water or munching sandwiches, food and drink safety is important. It’s the stuff that keeps us fuelled every day, but it can also be the stuff that makes us ill.

 

In fact, studies have shown that there are more than 500,000 cases of food poisoning a year, caused by pathogens. The drink isn’t much better, and plain old tap water can cause illness if not treated properly. So what can you do to protect you and your family?

 

Luckily, it’s 2016, and the modern age affords us a wealth of tips and tricks. Public health has never been higher, and that’s down to technological advancements as well as safe eating practices. You have to be careful with all forms of food and drink, after all. It can be harmful stuff if not prepared or processed correctly.

 

How can my food and drink be potentially unsafe?

 

It’s not a question a lot of people will ask themselves, but it should be. A lot of food you buy off the shelf is ready to eat, and that’s fine, but most of the time we have to prepare it. And that’s where the problems start to creep in.

 

Dilute pop, for example, can be a nice treat. However, it can be more harmful than you think. It’s packed full of sugar, and people who drink one to two servings a day risk developing diabetes more than those who avoid it. To combat this, adding hefty doses of water can break up that sugar and reduce calorie count.

 

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By Subray Hegde – Wikipedia:Contact us/Photo submission, CC BY 1.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=4244577

 

On the food side of things, those pork steaks you bought may look delicious, but you better cook them properly. Food poisoning can rear its head one or two days after consumption, so you won’t even know if the meat is safe straightaway. The bad thing is, though the meat may look cooked, it may not be. This puts you at risk, and puts other people at risk, as food poisoning can easily spread.

 

So, here are a few ways you can easily increase food and drink safety. Whether it’s by buying extra equipment or cutting foods out, there’s always more you can be doing!

 

Appliances and kitchen equipment

 

Safety often means extra costs, but they can be worth it. In order to protect you and your family, no amount of cash is too high! That being said, many home solutions are cheap, and can provide long lasting safety guarantees.

 

If you and your family consume a lot of meats, a meat probe thermometer will be a worthwhile investment. This tells you the internal temperature of the piece of meat, and saves you guessing if it’s safe or not! As the name implies, you can use it just as you would a standard thermometer.

 

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For the heavy water drinkers out there, a Berkey water filter will be of use. You can never tell how clean tap water is, and a filter will help purify it quickly. Speaking of tap water, there are a number of clever tricks to lower its potential bacteria count. Boiling water can kill some bacteria to a certain extent, but isn’t a surefire victory for you. Those that drink a lot of tea and coffee are in luck, as the frequent hot water consumption can contribute to good overall health.

 

General kitchen health and safety rules

 

  1. Chuck old appliances away!

Old microwaves and ovens may not cook your food properly. This is also true if they’re heavily damaged and in need of repair. You may be saving money by keeping it, but is it worth the risk? Consider an upgrade if necessary. Having up-to-date appliances can also help you make food last longer.

  1. Thoroughly clean all surfaces that have touched raw meat

Raw meat comes with a risk of disease through ingesting pathogens, and that extends to your surfaces. Thoroughly clean and wipe down any surface that has touched raw meat, multiple times. Don’t just rinse it with water. Use heavy doses of soap and washing up liquid.

Similarly, clean your hands in hot soapy water for at least twenty seconds. Over half the cases of foodborne illness could be eliminated by hand washing, so make sure you do so.

  1. Don’t store alcoholic drinks in direct sunlight

Just as you wouldn’t want a warm glass of water, drinking a cold beer or spirit can taste horrible. It’s not just the taste that can be affected, though. The actual drink itself can be damaged if left in the sun for too long.

Whiskey and other spirits can lose their color and receive damage if left in the warmth too long. Alcohol fails to replenish your water stores as it is, so don’t make yourself even more dehydrated with the stuff.

  1. Reduce the number of errors you accidentally make

Look; it can be hard cooking for a family of four after a hard day at work. Your heart may not be in it, and you may start to make mistakes. That being said, it’s vital you concentrate on the cooking and preparation process. It can save you and your family from a potential illness.

 

Similarly, if you yourself are ill, don’t risk it. You may feel fine, but those pathogens could still creep into that food somehow. Enlist the help of your partner or children, or order a takeout meal. That may cost you slightly more, but you won’t make anybody ill in the process. Time is money, and time spent being ill means no work can be done.

 

So, there you have it! That’s a quick little guide to improving food and drink safety. Most of it comes down to common sense and general best practices, but sometimes we neglect them. People don’t give enough credit to food safety, but it’s arguably the most important area of any kitchen. Not only can it protect you, it can protect other people, and therein lies the incentive to be safe.

 

 

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