How to Make Golden Brown Pancakes

Pancakes are a super delicious breakfast food, but if they aren’t made right, they aren’t quite so super delicious. They can be tough, doughy, chewy, burnt, or any other number of defects. The basic idea of pancakes is simple, and if you do it right, it’s easy, but if you don’t understand a few things that are important for good pancakes, you’ll be disappointed. Follow these tips to make sure you make golden brown delicious pancakes every time.

Sift the Flour

Sifting the flour together with all the rest of the dry ingredients will help keep the flour from lumping up too much and it will make the pancakes fluffier. Pancakes should be fluffy and tender. Pour each of the ingredients directly into the sifter and sift them through. Then, stir them thoroughly with a spoon.

Use Butter or Vegetable Oil

The recipe should call for 1 to 3 tablespoons of butter of vegetable oil. Don’t skip this ingredient and don’t replace it with applesauce or another substitute. The fat is necessary to help brown the pancakes, and it makes them taste a lot better. Most of the substitutes will add too much of a conflicting flavor.

Mix the Batter Sparingly

Don’t beat the batter, and don’t use a mixer. It only takes a little bit of mixing to form a batter. Lumps are actually a good thing. It means you probably didn’t mix it too much. Of course, there shouldn’t be too many lumps, but that is why you sifted the dry ingredients. Sifting will get rid of the large lumps. Any leftover lumps will either dissolve when the batter rests or will be cooked out.

Grease the Griddle Sparingly

Greasing the griddle is where it can be tough to getting brown pancakes. I noticed that my pancakes never looked the same as those at the restaurant. The trick is to not add too much grease. Butter works best, but you can also use vegetable oil. Wipe the oil or butter onto a hot griddle and wipe it off with a paper towel. It should be slick but there shouldn’t be any beads of fat.

Cook the Pancakes Enough

Give the pancakes time to form lots of tiny bubbles. Not only will this ensure that they are nice and fluffy, it will also give the pancake itself plenty of time to brown on the bottom. Don’t remove them from the pan until they are plenty golden brown on the other side, too.

How to Make a Novelty Cake

You can make a birthday or family anniversary into something memorable with a cake that is designed to catch the eye and appeal to the imagination. Novelty cakes come in all shapes and sizes and they are surprisingly simple to make.

It is great tun to make a cake that is out of the ordinary, when the occasion demands it. With a bit of imagination you can produce a wonderfully decorative centerpiece for the party table. Do remember that a simple decoration is often the most effective, or there is a danger that the results will be garish instead of entertaining.

Novelty cakes look their most attractive when served on a cake board. These are thick square or round boards covered with a hard wearing silver foil, available from large stationers and department stores. They are sold in a variety of sizes so choose one that matches your cake tin; the board should be about 2.5 cm [1 in] bigger all round than the decorated cake.

Alternative bases for decorated cakes are plain, clean wooden boards covered with silver foil or a cake stand or plate.

A fancy-shaped cake tin will automatically give you a decorative shape a prettily iced cake, which has been baked in a ring or fluted cake tin is elegant enough to serve as a dinner party dessert. Heart-shaped and numeral tins are available from most large stores. However, if you do not want the expense of a special tin, a knife can easily be used to produce some amazingly decorative cakes starting with a plain square or round shape.

Whichever cake tin you choose, remember that it is essential that it is correctly prepared. If the cake sticks when it is turned out, its appearance will be spoilt. Details on preparation of tins. You must, of course, also use the correct size tin for the amount of cake mix.

Simple designs can be cut from larger cakes baked in deep or sandwich tins. A rich sponge cake is the most suitable; this may be plain, colored or flavored as you wish. Select a suitable size for the number of servings you require.

Choose your design with regard to the cake tins you own. The simplest shape to cut from a round cake is a heart, but a star shape, horseshoe or butterfly is not difficult. The simplest shape to cut from a square is an octagon but you may want to try cutting out a number. First trace your design on to a thin sheet of cardboard. This should correspond exactly with the dimensions of the cake tin, so that the minimum amount of cake is cut away.

The cake must be completely cold before you start. Place it on a wooden board or work surface. You will need a medium-sized and a small sharp knife. If you are working with a cake that has peen baked in a deep tin, first cut it into layers. If you are using sandwich cakes place the layers side by side on the work surface or wooden board.

Put the cardboard template on top of each layer of cake and cut around it to form the cake shape. Hold the knife vertically at the side of the template and use a sawing motion to cut as this gives an even neat cake edge. The trimmings need not be wasted as they can be used for trifles and puddings (if they last that long).

How to Grill Steak on a Panini Press

You may not have thought of grilling beef on a panini maker, but it can be done. With proper technique you can make delicious and juicy steak. The best part is that panini grills drains of excess fat. It takes 4 to 10 minutes to cook depending on the thickness of the stake. So grilling beef on a Panini press is healthy, delicious, and quick. What could be better than that. Here is a recipe you might want to try.

Grilled top sirloin steak

1/4 cup red wine vinegar

1 large clove garlic minced

1 tsp coarse salt

1/2 tsp finely grated lemon zest

1/2 tsp fresh lemon juice

1 cup extra virgin oil

2 tsp dried oregano

1/2 a tsp cracked black pepper

4 Top sirloin steaks about 1/4 to 1/2 inch thick

Directions

1. Place the steaks in a nonreactive roasting pan.

2. Place salt and garlic in a mixing bowl and mix together. Add the red wine vinegar, lemon zest, and lemon juice and whisk until all the salt dissolves. Slowly add the olive oil, oregano, and pepper.

3. Pour half of the marinade over the meat and turn to coat both sides. Save the rest of the marinade for basting and serving. Let the steaks marinade 1 to 2 hours.

4. Drain the steaks well. Preheat the grill to high. Place the drip pan under the front of the grill. Lightly oil the surface of the grill surface. Place the steak on the grill and close the lid. The steak will be done 6 to 10 minutes.

5. As you grill the steak baste it with some of the remaining marinade. Turn the steak to baste both sides with the marinade.

6. Place the steak on a platter and spoon the rest of the marinade over it and serve hot.

This recipe gives you an idea how to grill beef on a Panini press the rest is up to you. You can use your imagination to create your own marinades and sauces to dress up your grilled steak. Enjoy!

You may be surprised to find your Panini maker can do a lot more than just make Panini sandwiches. It can grill fish and chicken and with the right technique they come out juicy and delicious. You can even grill your vegetables and they also come out great. The best part is cleaning up is easy. All you usually need to do is wipe off the grill surface with a dump towel. Just make sure you do that before the grill gets cold.

How to Cook a Roast in a Hurry

It can happen to anyone. You arrive home late and you have a roast to cook. Dinner time is in half an hour, and most roasts take an hour and a half to two hours to cook. Here’s what to do. This method works best with a piece of meat that has no bone in it or with a chicken.

The first thing to do is to put the oven on to a fairly high setting, hotter than you would normally use for a roast.

With a sharp knife slice the meat into portions of around three quarters of an inch thick. If it is a chicken you are roasting then cut it into quarters with kitchen scissors. If it is a piece of boneless pork, and you can remove the skin easily, then do so and cook it separately. Put all the meat slices into your roasting pan and place in the oven on the top level. Leave to cook for 20 to 25 minutes.

Now its time to turn your attention to the vegetables. Put some water on to boil in a saucepan. Wash and peel your potatoes. It you wish, you can leave the skin on. Its more nutritious and also quicker. Cut them into cubes approximately 1 inch. Cook in the boiling water for about 5 minutes. The potato cubes should be quite firm. If you over cook them its not a disaster, just turn them into mashed potato.

Drain the potato cubes and put them in a bowl. Drizzle a little good quality vegetable oil over them and toss around. Place on an oiled or non stick tray and put it in the oven on the top shelf, moving the roast meat pieces down a level after turning the meat slices over. The potatoes will take about 15 minutes to crisp, brown and cook through and should be ready when the meat is done.

At this stage you could add an optional gourmet touch – a herb crust on your meat. Mix a cup of breadcrumbs with dried herbs of your choice, a little grated cheese and water or milk to moisten. Spread thinly over the meat pieces. This could be prepared while the potatoes are boiling. The herb crust will need about 10 to 15 minutes to crisp and brown.

Now you need to prepare the green vegetables. Microwave, steam or boil the vegetables of your choice. This only takes a couple of minutes.

The last step is to prepare the gravy. A packet mix gravy is fine to use in this situation and is the quickest option.

Plate up and enjoy the meal. It should only take around half an hour to have a tasty roast meal ready to serve. Prepare to receive compliments.

Hot Dog Stand Recipe – You Can Make Yummy Stadium Style Hot Dogs Right at Home

I made hot dogs the same way pretty much for years. They were always okay, but nothing to brag about. I think maybe in the back of my mind, the lowly wiener was just not important enough to warrant creative input from my imaginative culinary side. Then one day, I decided to try something different.

As a youngster, I was taught to boil the wiener in water, put it in a bun, and squirt various condiments on top. But as I grew and advanced in culinary skills, I knew there had to be a way to improve on this method of cooking a hot dog.

Things that go great with hot dogs are: potato chips, baked beans, coleslaw, or potato salad.

This method of cooking the lowly wiener is now a regular thing around my house. My family loves them, and they really are good. Here’s what you’ll need:

* All beef wieners (you can eat that other “stuff” if you want, we only eat beef wieners; we also prefer bun length)

* Soft buns (you want fresh buns here, not stale, although you can steam stale buns back to life if you insist on using old bread – I have other uses for old bread such as Bread Pudding with Amaretto Sauce)

* Hot dog relish

* Sauerkraut

* Diced onions

* Mustard and ketchup

* Kraft shredded mexican style four cheese blend

* Hot dog chili sauce (Castleberry’s is our favorite)

* Laura’s homemade cole slaw

* Butter

* Tin foil

* Crock-pot

* Cast iron skillet

Now, you do not have to do everything the same way I do it. I am letting everyone know how I do it, and you can adjust as you see fit.

Please note the hot dogs need to spend some time in the crock-pot in order to be good, and the steaming method I mention below is great. Plan properly so the dog packets get to warm and meld inside their “packet” in the hot crock-pot. I normally make the dogs and allow them 45 minutes to an hour in the crock.

  1. About an hour before dinner, turn the crock-pot on low and let it get warm.
  2. Heat up the iron skillet, and add a tablespoon of butter.
  3. Fry the beef wieners in the iron skillet.
  4. When they have a good “fry” on the outside, sort of like you get if you grill them, remove and place inside of a fresh non-stale soft bun (I am very particular about my bread being soft and fresh)
  5. Immediately wrap the assembled bun and wiener in tin foil, sealing all edges.
  6. Place in crock-pot.
  7. Repeat with remaining buns and wieners.
  8. Cover the crock-pot and leave it alone.
  9. Heat up the chili in the microwave or on the stove.
  10. Prepare the other condiments.
  11. Get everything on the table, including drinks, chips, dip, whatever.
  12. Then get out one assembled dog at a time for each diner, keeping the rest in the crock-pot with lid on to remain warm.

These warm up really great. Simply take the bun and wiener combination out of aluminum foil (do not forget this step in order to avoid a nasty microwave incident), wrap loosely in a paper towel, and microwave about 10-15 seconds. Do not overdo it, the bun will get hard.

Alternate method: I tried this once and it was even better. Place a rack in the bottom of the crock-pot before adding hot dogs. Add one tablespoon or so of water. Be careful, you do not want to have the dog packets sitting in liquid. The idea is to lightly “steam” them instead.

I usually eat two hot dogs, each made as follows:

Version #1: (ingredients are in the order used) mustard, ketchup, relish, chili sauce, cheese, onions

Version #2: (ingredients are in the order used) mustard, relish, onions, sauerkraut, homemade coleslaw

Now, a note here about slaw. There are all kinds of different ways to make coleslaw. There is also slaw mix that can be bought in a bag. I am as particular about my slaw as I am about my bread. My momma made coleslaw pretty much the same way for years, and it always tasted good.

If you’ve ever eaten bad coleslaw, you’ll remember it. Some fast food restaurants have the audacity to CALL it coleslaw, but it is more like tasteless cardboard “stuff.” Did it ever seem to you that the slaw in many restaurants is often stark white, as if it is all made entirely from the cabbage core? Makes you wonder what happened to all of the GREEN stuff.

I’ll be sure to place a link to my coleslaw recipe at the end of the article, so be sure and grab that and try it with these delicious stadium style hot dogs.

I am very picky about certain things: fresh bread is one; fresh milk is another; good tasting coleslaw is important; I think the hot dog chili sauce by Castleberry’s is great; I use the Kraft Mexican style four cheese blend almost daily; I want to know what is in the meat I eat. However, to each his own. Enjoy!

Home-Cooked Meals Are a Hot Investment

I married well.

After seeing a recent stat that 41% of first marriages end in divorce, I count myself lucky. I managed to find a mate who is smart, funny, responsible and compassionate.

And he loves to cook!

I picked up some basic cooking skills throughout high school and college. I can make grilled cheese, boil an egg and bake a mean chocolate cake for someone’s birthday. But I don’t stray too far from those easy recipes and skills.

On the other hand, my husband is the one in our family who makes the bulk of our meals. He’s the one who can explain the different cuts of beef at the grocery, and he’s the one who knows when to use dill and when to use rosemary. (I try to stay away from the spice rack completely.)

If food prices continue to shift the way they have over the past year, I think we will see more people like my husband cooking amazing meals at home rather than going out to eat… and that’s going to create some fantastic investment opportunities if you know where to look.

Back in the Kitchen

The government recently announced that the consumer price index (CPI) was unchanged for June, while economists were expecting inflation to tick up 0.1%. The 12-month CPI has dropped to 1.6% from 1.9% and is well off its five-year peak of 2.7% reached in February.

There’s a lot of hullabaloo going on right now about whether the Federal Reserve will lift rates yet again this year and whether the slowdown in inflation is far more than temporary, as the Fed has been claiming.

But I don’t care about the Fed right now. If the Fed is going to act, it’s unlikely to be until December, and there’s a lot of data set to come out between now and December that could sway the Fed.

If you dig a little deeper into the CPI report, there was a great nugget of data that no one is really talking about… and that creates a great opportunity for astute investors.

The government reported that grocery prices (food at home) fell in June. The price of food purchased in a grocery and prepared at home has steadily dropped since peaking in September 2015. We experienced a small run-up earlier this year, but it appears that prices are rolling over once again and headed lower.

By contrast, the price of food purchased at restaurants has steadily risen over the same time period and shows little sign of relenting.

Technology has worked to reduce costs in food production by increasing crop output. Low gas prices have cut transportation costs as well. The end result: It is now cheaper to buy food at the grocery than it was in 2015.

Meanwhile, rising labor costs and skyrocketing rents have forced many restaurants to lift their prices just to eke out a profit, making it far more expensive to eat out.

The United States Department of Agriculture reports that food-at-home prices dropped 1.3% in 2016 from 2015 levels and are expected to rise between 0% and 1% in 2017. Food-at-restaurants prices jumped 2.6% in 2016 and aren’t slowing in 2017.

The Market Has Changed

The race is on to make a profit off what’s hitting your table for dinner. We’ve seen a surge over the past several years of meal-delivery services such as Blue Apron, HelloFresh, Plated and Home Chef. These companies are catering to families (particularly millennials) who are looking for the comfort of cooking at home while still getting a unique variety of meals – far more than my awesome grilled cheese sandwiches.

Earlier this summer, Amazon announced plans to acquire Whole Foods. Imagine if Amazon could streamline Whole Foods the way it has done its other businesses, bringing costs down and luring customers in.

And of course, we have Wal-Mart going head-to-head with Amazon, which could create a price war that works in favor of consumers.

The market has shifted in favor of the grocer over the restaurant. Prices are dropping for food in grocery stores while restaurants are raising their prices just to get above the cost of operating. Meanwhile, wages for most Americans are stagnating, making the choice an obvious one.

Investors should be wary of restaurants and take a new look at grocery stores such as Kroger or even watch for new opportunities driven by millennials.

Preheat the oven. Sharpen the knives. Bust out the cookbook. It’s time to make dinner at home.

Health Benefits of Sonamasuri Brown and Sonamasuri White

Thousands of varieties of rice are available throughout the world out of which ‘Sonamasuri ‘ is a very popular rice variety. It is a high yielding variety of rice and is evolved from the very famous rice varieties namely, Sona and Masuri. It has acquired both a national and an International reputation because of exports to many countries across the world.

Sonamasuri is a premium rice. The two varieties of Sonamasuri , brown and white, are available in the market. It is a medium-grain and an aromatic rice. It is lightweight and also low in starch content. The Sonamasuri rice is used in various dishes such as fried rice, sweet Pongal, bhaths and even Idlis.

Sonamasuri brown rice is a healthy option to add in the meals. It has bran which provides natural wholeness to the grains. The nutritional value of the brown rice is least damaged by the refining and polishing process.

It is a rich source of manganese and an excellent source of minerals like selenium and magnesium. Manganese is an essential element of an antioxidant enzyme superoxide dismutase, responsible for protection against damage from the free radicals.

Also, manganese aids in producing energy and is important for the synthesis of fatty acids. Selenium is an important mineral which protects against cancer, as this vital nutrient is incorporated at the active site of various proteins.

As only the hull layer of the rice grains are removed, the grains are rich in fiber content. It also helps in maintaining the digestive health and prevents problems like constipation.The oil content in the rice helps in lowering cholesterol content. Brown rice has low Glycemic Index (GI) and hence, beneficial for those who have diabetes. The brown rice is associated with several other benefits like lowering high blood pressure, reducing the risk of heart attack and maintaining a good cardiac health.

Sonamasuri brown rice after cooking gives a chewy texture. For cooking, soak the brown rice for a few hours before cooking, so as to have easy cooking and the rice will become softer.

Sonamasuri white rice is widely used in India. This version of white rice is healthier than basmati. It is not as polished as the other usually available white rice, especially like basmati rice, and hence, it retains slightly more nutrients. The majority of calories are obtained from rice due to their high carbohydrate content. The carbohydrate content in Sonamasuri rice is less and hence, the nutritive value is more. They provide energy to the body and promote proper functioning of various vital organs like heart, brain, liver and kidneys. Sonamasuri rice provides some amount of proteins. It is fat-free and sodium-free rice. It is the best-suited rice for nutrition and weight loss.

Prepare delicious recipes using the organic Sonamasuri rice, both brown and white for a healthy and tasty treat during the meal times. The organic products are to be preferred as they are free from synthetic fertilizers and pesticides. Buy high quality, authentic organic Sonamasuri rice both brown and white varieties; reach out to the most reliable organic produce suppliers in India.

He Bao Eggs (Small Bag Eggs)

He Bao egg – or small bag egg, must look like a small bag or wallet just as its name implies. Of course, it is not like the wallet we have today. It is referred as the kind of bag sewed with fabric and embroidered outside in the old days.

He Bao egg – or small bag egg, must look like a small bag or wallet just as its name implies. Of course, it is not like the wallet we have today. It is referred as the kind of bag sewed with fabric and embroidered outside in the old days.

Cooking He Bao eggs requires solid skills. You may start from learning fried eggs first. The duration and degree of heating is the biggest test when cooking fried eggs. It gets burned easily when over heated, but the white part would be too soft if the fire is adjusted too low. You simply have to practice till you get it.

Once you feel comfortable with cooking fried eggs, you are ready to cook He Bao eggs.

Here are the basic steps to cook He Bao Eggs:

Ingredients:

  • 6 eggs
  • 4 tablespoons oil
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1/2 tablespoon vinegar
  • 1/2 tablespoon sugar
  • dash of monosodium glutamate

Method:

  1. Heat the 4 tablespoons oil. Fry eggs sunny side up.
  2. Fold eggs in half. Fry until both sides are light brown. Remove to plate.
  3. Fry remaining eggs one by one, adding more oil as needed. Add seasoning and simmer lightly before serving.

Cooking time: 20 minutes

Nutritional information:

Yield: 3 servings

Each serving provides:

Calories: 184

Protein: 15.6 g

Grill Chicken to Perfection With a Coleman Roadtrip Grill LXE

Grilled chicken is a favorite among health addicts, weight watchers, athletes who want to increase muscle mass, and many more. It’s a very healthy way to eat chicken. Chicken meat is known for its high protein content and can be eaten by dieters or those who want to pack on a lot of muscle. You can grill different parts of a chicken like the legs, breasts and wings. You can eat it whole, sliced, skewered or filleted. It’s a bit difficult to grill chicken to perfection. This is because the outside can burn easily while the inside is still raw. Here are some important pre-grilling, grilling and post-grilling tips to appreciate the full flavor of grilled chicken. These grilling tips are best appreciated using a Coleman Roadtrip Grill LXE type of grill.

Pre-grilling

1. Keep the chicken cold in the refrigerator and bring it out only if ready to cook. Thaw is first before placing it on top of the grill.

2. Paint or coat the grill rack with oil or use non-stick spray. This will prevent the chicken from sticking to the grill. The chicken skin has natural oils too that can prevent sticking.

3. Keep the grill hot before placing the chicken.

4. Use a wide metal spatula or long-handled tongs to handle the chicken. Don’t use a fork because the juices will flow out. Keep them in there.

Grilling

1. It’s best to use low to medium heat in grilling the chicken.

2. Distribute the charcoal so there will be even distribution of heat. This is where the use of propane gas grills like Coleman Roadtrip Grill LXE is better. The heat is evenly distributed and no messy charcoal.

3. The distance of the grill rack to the burning coal should be between 5 to 10 inches to avoid overcooking the chicken. It’s best not to sear the chicken; this can leave the inside raw.

4. Large chicken meat slices usually take 30 minutes to 1 hour to cook. It cooks less if the chicken is boneless, separated or cut into thin slices.

5. You can use two ways to know if the chicken is cooked. The first way is to get a meat thermometer and check the temperature. For whole chickens, the optimal temperature is 180 – 185 degrees Fahrenheit. For breast parts, a temperature of 170 degrees Fahrenheit is enough. The other way is to cut on one side of the chicken and assess the cut surface. If the pink color is gone, that means it’s already cooked.

6. Don’t forget to turn chicken just once to cook the other side. Keep the lid of your grill closed to seal in the heat and distribute it evenly. It also prevents too much oxygen from getting in and causing flare-ups.

Post-grilling

1. Before serving, allow your grilled chicken to cool down for a few minutes. This will help in keeping the juices in.

2. Put the spices or coatings after grilling or when the chicken is almost finished. This is also true for the barbecue sauce. The sugar content of the sauces burn the chicken meat if you put them on the chicken before grilling.

3. Chicken meat is notorious for sticking to a dirty grill. Make sure you clean your grill before the next chicken barbecue. Otherwise, the charred bits of the old chicken will stick to the one you are cooking.

There you have it. Grilling chicken to perfection takes time and practice to master. To cook it thoroughly and evenly, make sure you have the right grill.