lundi 28 avril 2014

Dinner Ideas - Keeping the Spirit of Hosting Alive

You have decided to host a dinner party to your near and dear ones. Remember! It is a great opportunity to shower your love and affection upon the people, who are integral parts of your life. Thus, you have to keep in mind superb dinner ideas and come out as a perfect host for this dinner party. And believe me! Your guests will remember your spirit of hosting dinner parties for long time.
What Is To Be Served
The first of many dinner ideas is that you must prepare your menu in advance, keeping in mind the quantity and quality of food items. If you are inviting few people for dinner, you may try to acquire information about their likes and dislikes. However, if you aim at hosting a grand dinner, you must decide the menu that can suit the tastes of every guest.
The majority of people in today's society are health conscious, thus you need to prepare the menu that contains less fat contents and also, low carb food items. Moreover, there may be some people, who are on diet. Thus, you need to keep this aspect in your mind. The low carb recipes like fish, eggs, meat and pasta are some magnificent options to find place in your menu. You must start with serving soup and don't forget to include salad with a touch of olive oil. Pork chops and mixed vegetables are another great dinner ideas.
After the dinner, you must serve desserts like chocolate muffins, apple pie, pumpkin pie, and cakes to name a few. It is also a part of dinner ideas to serve champagnes, but remember that it must suit the reason behind this dinner party. If there are children and teen-agers in your guest list, you must keep special dishes reserved for these age groups.
Preparing The Dinning Table
The great dinner ideas include the art of arranging the dinning table as well. You must have proper arrangement to provide space to all the guests on dinning table. The tablecloth and cloth napkins must be washed properly to remove all kinds of strains from them. You must place some beautiful vases on the table and also, make some flower arrangements. The other arrangements must be made according to the mood of occasion.
You may use aromatic room freshener to build up a great atmosphere. The utensils and serving bowls and spoons must be neat and clean. It is also the part of great dinner ideas to prepare food menus, if you are throwing a grand dinner party. There are beautiful candles and other table decors that you may opt for to enhance the look of dinning table.
The dinner ideas mentioned above are bound to bring applause for your spirit of hosting. You will find that people will praise your dinner parties and will love to mark their presence in them. Besides relishing food, you have to maintain a perfect level of every other arrangement associated with dinner party.

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Vegetarian Recipes

The art of cooking encompasses many different types of foods from a variety of countries. Each of these countries that you will find recipes for has an interesting way of cooking these foods. The numerous ways that you can cook vegetables will also be documented in the various vegetarian recipes that you can find.
These recipes will show you the different ingredients that you will need to make starters, appetizers, main course dishes, side dishes, salads, vegetarian pastas and lasagnas. You can also find many interesting desserts and drinks which are ideal for use in everyday living as well as for those of you who are on a diet.
When you look at these many vegetarian recipes you will see there are various vegetables that you can use. For the most part these items will not be too difficult or expensive to find. The kitchen implements can be ones that you already have. Here you may have to do some improvising to get the results that the vegetarian recipes indicate.
A few of the vegetarian recipes that you will find will help you to cut down on cholesterol producing meats by showing you vegetable alternates. These alternates will be used in some of the vegetarian recipes which are available.
You will also find great tasting vegetarian recipes which will show you some interesting various on the main dish of any meal. These will be ones that you have at some point heard of. You should see about trying ones of these just to see how the flavor explodes on your taste buds.
The internet will be a great source of vegetarian recipes that you can easily try out. The added advantage is that you will be able to look for these various recipes from a number of different countries. Your cook books and specialty vegetarian recipe cook books are another source that you can use to look for the different vegetarian recipes that you are planning on making.
To provide you with an idea of the different foods that you can find with regards to a vegetarian way of life here are a few recipe names. Bharta which is a smoked eggplant dish which originates in Punjab, India. Cabbage rolls are another interesting variation that you will find being translated into the vegetarian side of cooking.
Here the cabbages are stuffed with tasty vegetables of your choice rather than meat. Some of the vegetarian recipes that you will find will deal with providing you with ways of making lasagnas, pastas, pizzas and even mock meat dishes like vegetarian Shepherd's Pie.
As you look through the many pages of cook books you will see that going vegetarian does not mean that you are sacrificing tasty foods. On the contrary you will find that most of the vegetarian recipes are a source of filling foods that will make your taste buds desire more with each bite.

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Baked Chicken Breast Recipes - Five Tips for Perfect Baked Chicken Breast Recipes

There are limitless ways of baking chicken breasts, ranging from the simple to 3-michelin star quality of cooking. Below, we have listed two easy yet delicious baked chicken breast recipes to get you started.
3-ingredient Baked Chicken Breast Recipe
Busy moms who want a quick way of whipping up delicious home baked chicken, this recipe only requires three ingredients:
  • 4 slices of chicken breasts (with bones and skin), cleaned and patted to dry
  • ¼ cup butter (plus more for coating the baking pan)
  • About a tablespoon of combined salt and pepper

Preheat oven to 350 degree Fahrenheit.
Coat the baking pan with butter, then arrange the breasts on the pan, then coat the breasts evenly with butter using a basting brush. If you don't have a basting brush, cut a part of butter on top of each breast.
Season with salt and pepper (or other seasonings of your choice).
Put in the oven and bake for about 45 minutes. Be careful not to overcook so it doesn't become dry. The breasts should ooze with juice when poked with fork.
Baked Chicken Breasts with Parmesan
If you want a healthy way of cooking breasts, this dish can be completed in just half an hour:
  • 24 ounces of halved breasts plus 6 ounces of skinless, boneless breasts
  • 1/3 cup bread crumbs
  • ¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 cloves garlic, pressed
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • ¼ tsp. black pepper
  • Cooking spray
  • ½ cup pasta sauce, warmed
Preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit.
Put a large baking sheet in the oven and let warm for about 5 minutes.
Meanwhile, combine the bread crumbs, cheese, and pepper in a shallow dish.
In a separate glass bowl, combine garlic and oil, then microwave for about 30 seconds to release the fragrance of the garlic.
Dip breasts in garlic oil, then coat with breadcrumb mixture. Spray preheated baking sheet with oil. Put chicken on the pan, then coat with cooking spray.
Bake for about 25 minutes or until golden brown. Serve with pasta sauce.
Five Tips for a Perfect Baked Chicken Breast Recipes
Chicken breasts are that part of the chicken which, when cooked properly, can give you a meal you'll never forget. However, when underdone, it might make you sick. When overdone, it's dry and tasteless. Here are tips on how to achieve a perfect dish.
  1. When cooking baked chicken breast recipes at home, follow suggested cooking time and internal temperature provided in the recipes.
  2. Remove the skin and bones - this is the best way to bake breasts.
  3. If you're using dry heat baking (high heat, short cooking time), pound the chicken to an even thickness first to ensure even cooking.
  4. Baking is typically done using dry heat or moist heat method. Dry heat baking uses high heat so the chicken should be cooked in a short period of time. Moist heat baking uses low heat, so the chicken should be cooked for a longer period of time.
  5. Brining the chicken is the best way to ensure juicy and moist chicken breast. If the chicken you bought has not been brined in the store, simply mix three tablespoons of salt with four cups of water. Submerge the breasts in the brine for about an hour.

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A Panini Sandwich Press Will Quickly Create Delicious and Healthy Meals

People who are always on the go do not have the time to create full meals in the comfort of their homes, but this does not mean that they should be restricted from eating healthy and delicious meals. If you are one of these people, then you should invest in a good panini sandwich press. With a panini press you will still be able to eat healthy foods by preparing your own delicious pressed sandwiches in no time at all.
There are a lot of panini makers on the market today, and choosing the right one for your needs can be quite confusing if you do not know anything about them. You are left without knowing which kind and which brand to choose from. To help you out some, here are some of the best brands of panini sandwich press devices that you might decide from.
Cuisinart Panini Maker:
The Cuisinart panini product is a Panini press that is preferred by a lot of people who live by themselves or within a small family. The Cuisinart panini maker has a small and lightweight frame which is capable of making sandwiches for two people at a time. Clean-up of the Cuisinart maker is also very easy, which is why this particular sandwich maker is preferred by a lot of people who are always on the go. The Cuisinart panini maker is also one of the least expensive sandwich makers on the market.
Villaware Panini Maker:
Whether you want to grill meat or make thick sandwiches, the Villaware panini press will always deliver the kind of meal that you want when it comes to making sandwiches. What is interesting about it is that it can work heavy-duty since it can grill thick portions of meats and breads at one time. Moreover, the Villaware unit also offers variable temperature control to make sure that you do not burn what you are grilling. Although this device is heavy-duty, storage of this particular sandwich maker is easy, as you can store it upright without the fear that it will get broken into pieces.
Wolfgang Puck Panini Maker:
Made by the famous chef Wolfgang Puck, this panini press is one of the most indispensable sandwich makers for people who want to whip up good sandwiches all the time. The Wolfgang Puck unit is engineered to create tasty sandwiches and, at the same time, health-wise meals, due to the fact that the panini maker has its own fat-drip hose that exudes excess fats from the grilled meats to use on the sandwich. This press is also a heavy-duty unit.
Star Panini Grill:
For making large sandwiches for several people, the Star panini grill could be the best choice for your kitchen. The Star panini grill is equipped with a large front grease drawer and two-sided heaters to ensure fast cooking, and thereby making this panini grill a perfect kitchen device to use if you are having a sandwich party at home. However, keep in mind this unit is one of the most expensive Panini sandwich press devices on the market.
Breville Panini Grill:
For people who want to eat cafe-style sandwiches, the Breville panini grill should be the sandwich maker that gets the most consideration. The Breville panini grill is not restricted to making just sandwiches, but it can also be used to grill meats like chicken and beef. The Breville grill has a non-stick pan which makes it a perfect choice for people who do not want to spend a lot of time in cleaning up their grill. Simply put, the Breville panini grill is the best panini sandwich press for people who do not want to spend so much time cooking and cleaning.

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How to Make a Tasty Quesadilla

Everyone loves a good quesadilla. They are easy to make, can be done quickly, and are undeniably tasty! Here are some tips on how to make a great quesadilla. Although a quesadilla can be made with just cheese, it is best served with grilled chicken. Take a chicken breast cutlet and tenderize it, and then preferably cook it on a grill. Usually the chicken breast will require cooking around 6 minutes per side. If a grill is not available, an aroma pot or something similar will work fine. If you are feeling creative, do not hesitate to marinate the chicken or add other spices.
Once the chicken is cooked, take a sharp knife and cut the cooked chicken into cubes. Cubes about one centimeter per side are ideal, although whatever suits your individual taste should work fine. It is best to cut the chicken after it has cooled down slightly after cooking.
When the chicken is fully cut, it is time to warm up a frying pan to slightly less than medium heat. When the frying pan has warmed up, place some butter on the pan. It is better to use butter than oil, as the butter will add flavor to any tortilla that you will use. Once the butter has melted and been spread on the pan, it is time to place a soft tortilla on the pan. At this point it is time to spread the cut chicken evenly on one half of the tortilla while mixing the chicken with cheese evenly. At most supermarkets you may find a cheese blend specially made for quesadillas. Once the chicken and cheese are set up, fold the tortilla in half and let it cook.
While the quesadilla is cooking, it is a good idea to press the top of the tortilla to shape it properly into a quesadilla shape. The goal of the cooking is to slightly toast the tortilla while melting the cheese inside. Once you see that the cheese is melted, it is time to flip the quesadilla. The process can be repeated for the other side of the quesadilla. Once the cheese has fully melted, you are finished! Time to eat!

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Best of Vegan Recipes

When shifting to a vegan diet for the first time, the transformation can take some time. Not only that, you would also need to change your entire perspective related to taste and cooking. So, while you get yourself used to the ways of vegan cooking and eating, here are some of the best Vegan Recipes for you to try out and enjoy the joys of vegan cooking and eating. 
  • One of the all time favorites among the Vegan Recipes is the Vegan Paella. This is actually a dish of Spanish origin. In the traditional recipe, seafood is used. However, for vegan cooking, the cashews used in the recipe replace the protein element of seafood.

  • Another of the best recipes that remains a favorite of vegans is the Avocado Grapefruit Salad. It has a creamy kind of texture and made with all vegan food items. The salad is really filling and delicious.

  • For those looking for something rich in flavor, you can always go for the Vegan Recipe for Coconut Vegetable curry. This dish has a very memorable flavor and you are very likely to try it again. The key to the rich flavor is to hold the amount of coconut milk you add to the recipe.

  • If you like your food to be strong in flavor, you can always make a Vegan Recipe with a good amount of spice. These best spices are the fresh ones. These have a unique aroma and flavor that you're not likely to forget anytime soon.

  • If you like dessert, you can check out many of the Vegan Recipes in dessert. You can make some of the best tasting cakes, pies and muffins. The coconut cake, carrot cake, fig spice pie and apple crisp and apple pie are the top rated of all vegan recipes.
In terms of substitutes, you can find many of them in the market for example cheese, butter, milk and other items. You can find your favorite brand of vegan substitute food items and use these items to add the touch of your personal taste to the recipes.
Whether you are looking for some delicious and filling breakfast, lunch, dinner or a simple snack, it is all there in vegan cooking in the form of various soups, dips, snacks, and salads along with full meals. You can always try for new food items and recipes and experiment with vegan food recipes.

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Great Healthy Snack Ideas

If there is one thing you should know about dieting, and that is not to starve yourself. If you can control your hunger and develop a healthy food regimen, it should help you to stay fit. If you get very hungry, and the urge to overeat kicks in, it is helpful to always carry healthy snacks with you. That will keep you from overeating because of hunger. Also, always have a bottle of water with you because hunger pangs are sometimes confused with thirst or dehydration.
What I mean by "healthy" is something that's less than 100 calories and is not more than two to three handfuls in total. Portion control is important. Try making the healthy snack a natural one if possible, containing fruit or vegetables that are not processed. How about an apple?
Here we will discuss a few healthy snacks that are considered great on the go. These snacks are tasty and low in calories. They are great for work, airports, or road trips and they are easy to carry in your bag.
It may take some time to change your snack eating habits. If you usually like snacking on potato chips, then it might take you awhile to switch to raw vegetables; such as selecting an apple to munch on instead of a bag of chips or maybe choosing yogurt instead of a soda and fries.
If you really want to start eating healthy snacks, then prepare for a regimen change. You will need to have your kitchen filled with healthy foods only. Like the saying goes, out of sight, out of mind. Always keep a snack with you, a granola bar would be the perfect example of a healthy snack.
10 Healthy Snack Ideas
Vegetables - Carrying chopped celery or baby carrots is easy to take to the office of just on the go. They both have tons of minerals and fiber to fuel your body up, instead of bringing it down. Also they are low in calories.
Sliced Fruit - These are in grocery stores and even fast food restaurants nowadays. They can be found in a mix variety of fruits. Just go to the produce section of your grocery store and buy it pre-cut or whole. Some examples are apples, strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, plums, peaches, and pears.
Variety of nuts - Peanuts, cashews, almonds, and walnuts are some of the nuts that are a great snack. A handful should be just enough when you get hungry. They do not need refrigeration and are easy and light to carry in a Ziploc bag. They are also good in peanut butter form.
Raisin - Raisins are loaded with fiber so you feel full. This is a low glycemic snack that is filling and at the same time very healthy. A little box only has 45 calories and easy on the go. Raisins can also be added to salads and cereals. A quarter cup of raisins provides you with a full serving of fruit.
Egg (hard boiled) - Eggs are easy to cook and only have seventy six calories. The egg contains proteins, minerals, iron, iodine, calcium and vitamin A. You get all those healthy nutrients from one little egg. Egg white is also very good all by itself.
Popcorn - This is a great snack that is easy and inexpensive. It is light and healthy with lots of fiber. Try to be light on the salt and no butter if possible. There are many brands out now that are fat free and available in small bags, and typically each bag has only 100 calories.
Protein bar - These bars are great for individuals looking for extra protein in their diet. They come in many flavors and are convenient to carry. Try to avoid the bars with lots of sugars. These protein bars can be found in grocery stores, but you do get a better selection at a nutritional store.
Oranges - This is a great source of vitamins C, B, B1, and high fiber all from one fruit. It has a delicious sweet flavor and also good in its juice form. If drinking the juice be aware of the sugar content. Try to always buy naturally fresh squeezed if possible. Different varieties of oranges are available year round. The best oranges are the ones grown in Florida and California.
Yogurt - This is a delicious source of calcium that comes in a variety of flavors. Most yogurt cups have less than 170 calories and are 99% fat free. Yogurt is also loaded with vitamin C, D and A.
Cheese sticks - You can find low fat cheese sticks or cheese cubes in the dairy section of your supermarket. They are a great source of calcium and vitamins. The cheese sticks having as little as 60 calories and are usually individually wrapped. Kids love these cheeses and it's a healthy snack and a great way to get their daily calcium.
There are many healthy snack ideas. These are just a few that you can grab quickly when on the go. When home make your family healthy snacks. Have a fruit platter or a tuna salad instead of bringing out the bag of chips and salsa. If you're having a party, do the healthy alternative.
Everyone feels much better when eating healthy. Have you ever snacked on junk food and realized later you feel terrible, bloated or have an upset stomach? That's usually the difference between eating healthy or eating junk food.
It is all a matter of getting yourself accustomed to the healthier alternative when snacking. If you have children, teach them at a young age to eat healthy snacks. Have them snack with fruits and vegetables. Keep them away from sodas and sugary snacks. Many of the problems found with obesity are the lack of a nutritional diet at home.
Place a fruit basket accessible to everyone in your kitchen. Have the pantry with only on the go healthy snacks. Once you start only eating healthy snacks you will not crave the junk snacks. So, clean out the kitchen and get rid of all that is not good for you. You'll be glad you did.

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Healthy Dinner Recipes For a Healthier You

We know we should eat healthy. We want what is best for our family. So why don't we eat the way we are supposed to eat? Let's take a look at some of the reasons why we tend to make unhealthy choices along with some helpful suggestions for healthy dinner recipes.
No Time to Make and Eat a Healthy Dinner
In today's society, we are always on the go - working, running errands, driving our children to and from school and extracurricular activities; the list is endless. Grocery stores are turning into food malls. With all the aisles and selections to navigate, we may feel we don't have time to go grocery shopping.
Because most people only have a few minutes to get dinner, they usually choose fast food, which is a convenient, albeit unhealthy choice. As a nation, the U.S. is getting fatter and unhealthier. What we need to combat this dilemma are healthy dinner recipe choices that can be prepared fast.
Quick and Healthy Dinner Choices
There are literally thousands of cookbooks on the market and many of them have exactly what we need: quick and healthy dinner recipes. But if you absolutely can't find the time to make a healthy dinner at home; go to the grocery store. Most supermarkets have an area where they sell roasted chicken and deli meats such as sliced turkey. Both these options can be part of a healthy dinner. Grab a loaf of healthy whole grain bread, a bag of apples, and a gallon of milk and you have something much better for you than a quarter pound hamburger with greasy fries.
Healthy Dinners Save You Money
So you've decided that fast food isn't the way to go. What about a sit-down restaurant? The food looks mouth-watering good! At only $12 a meal, you can have enough to satisfy you for hours. They serve steak, potatoes, pastas... and the desserts are to die for! When you look at their fantastic dinner menu you may want to think about what all the sugar, cholesterol and fat will do to your body.
As far as cost goes: It doesn't cost $12 a person to eat at home. In fact, it doesn't have to cost $12 for an entire meal for 5! What is more, you don't save time this way. How long does it take to drive to the restaurant, wait for a table, wait for the food to be prepared, eat and drive home? In that amount of time you could have made an inexpensive, healthy dinner and eaten it at home.
How to Pick a Healthy Dinner Recipe
- Use recipes that contain low-fat ingredients like fresh vegetables, fruits, lean meat, whole grains and skim milk.
- Choose the freshest ingredients possible.
- Organic foods are grown without the use of pesticides and hormones and are the best food for your body.
It is all about having the best ingredients on hand at home to select and prepare a healthy dinner recipe for your loved ones.
Preparing dinner at home benefits you in more than time, money and health. It allows you priceless, quality time with your family. Sharing a nutritious meal around the family table is one of the many ways of enjoying healthy dinner choices.

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