Kitchen Hint of the Day! TUESDAY

January 19, 2021 at 6:00 AM | Posted in Kitchen Hints | Leave a comment
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Freezing Bread Will Save You Money…………

If you do not eat bread that often and don’t want to throw away the leftover every time it goes bad, why not save it in the freezer? Freezing bread is super easy, it doesn’t affect the flavor, and the best thing is that you will have fresh bread available at any time. Plastic packaging, freezer bags, airtight containers or heavy-duty aluminum foil work really good to package bread before freezing. Cakes and home-baked goodies can also be frozen! P.S. Bread is only well preserved when stored in the freezer, not in the fridge. Now who doesn’t like to save money?

One of America’s Favorites – BLT

January 18, 2021 at 6:02 AM | Posted in One of America's Favorites | Leave a comment
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BLT sandwich on toast

A BLT is a type of sandwich, named for the initials of its primary ingredients, bacon, lettuce and tomato. It can be made with varying recipes according to personal preference. Simple variants include using different types of lettuce, toasting or not, or adding mayonnaise. More pronounced variants can include using turkey bacon or tofu in place of bacon, or removing the lettuce entirely.

Variations on the BLT date to the early 1900s, but it did not achieve widespread popularity until after World War II, when the ingredients became more readily available year-round. Referencing the sandwich by its initials rather than naming the ingredients in full did not become common until the 1970s. Until 2019 the BLT has been ranked as the second most popular sandwich in the US and as the UK’s favourite sandwich, and is frequently referenced or depicted in media and culture. In 2019 the BLT dropped rank and was voted the sixth most popular sandwich in the US, with grilled cheese taking the lead as the most popular sandwich in the US.

 

Although the ingredients of the BLT have existed for many years, there is little evidence of BLT sandwich recipes prior to 1900. The 1903 Good Housekeeping Everyday Cook Book, a recipe by a Dr. Evan Mee for a club sandwich included bacon, lettuce, tomato, mayonnaise and a slice of turkey sandwiched between two slices of bread. While the 1929 book Seven Hundred Sandwiches does include a section on bacon sandwiches, the recipes often include pickles and none contain tomato.

A BLT sandwich preparation

The BLT became popular after World War II because of the rapid expansion of supermarkets, which allowed ingredients to be available year-round. The initials, representing “bacon, lettuce, tomato”, likely began in the U.S. restaurant industry as shorthand for the sandwich, but it is unclear when this transferred to the public consciousness. For example, a 1951 edition of the Saturday Evening Post makes reference to the sandwich, although it does not use its initials, describing a scene in which: “On the tray, invariably, are a bowl of soup, a toasted sandwich of bacon, lettuce and tomato, and a chocolate milk shake.”

A 1954 issue of Modern Hospital contains a meal suggestion that includes: “Bean Soup, Toasted Bacon Lettuce and Tomato Sandwich, Pickles, Jellied Banana Salad, Cream Dressing, and Pound Cake.” By 1958, Hellmann’s Mayonnaise advertised their product as “traditional on bacon, lettuce, and tomato sandwiches,” suggesting that the combination had been around for some time. However, there are several references to a “B.L.T” in the early 1970s, including in one review of Bruce Jay Friedman’s play entitled Steambath titled: “A B.L.T. for God – hold the mayo.”. The abbreviation used in title references a line of dialogue in the play in which God yells, “Send up a bacon and lettuce and tomato sandwich, hold the mayo. You burn the toast, I’ll smite you down with my terrible swift sword.” The coexistence of the shortened version and the full name suggests this was a period of transition as the abbreviation was popularized.

 

While there are variations on the BLT, the essential ingredients are bacon, tomatoes and lettuce between two slices of bread, often toasted. The quantity and quality of the ingredients are matters of personal preference. The bacon can be well cooked or tender, but as it “carries” the other flavors, chefs recommend using higher quality meat; in particular, chef Edward Lee states “Your general supermarket bacon is not going to cut the mustard.”

Iceberg lettuce is a common choice because it does not add too much flavor while adding crunch. Food writer Ed Levine has suggested that BLT does not require lettuce at all, as it is “superfluous”, a suggestion that Jon Bonné, lifestyle editor at MSNBC, described as “shocking”. Michele Anna Jordan, author of The BLT Cookbook, believes the tomato is the key ingredient and recommends the use of the beefsteak tomato as it has more flesh and fewer seeds. Similarly, chef and food writer J. Kenji Lopez-Alt believes that a BLT is not a well-dressed bacon sandwich; it’s a tomato sandwich, seasoned with bacon. For that reason, he argues that the BLT is a seasonal sandwich since it best made with high-quality summer tomatoes.

The sandwich is sometimes served with dressings, like mayonnaise. The bread can be of any variety, white or wholemeal, toasted or not, depending on personal preference.

 

BLT with avocado

The sandwich has a high sodium and fat content, and has been specifically targeted by UK café chains in an effort to reduce salt and fat. Due to this, low-fat mayonnaise is a common substitute along with low salt bread and less fatty bacon. A more visible solution is to use turkey bacon in lieu of normal bacon. One of the variations on the BLT is the club sandwich, a two-layered sandwich in which one layer is a BLT. The other layer can be almost any sort of sliced meat, normally chicken or turkey.

The BLT has been deconstructed into a number of forms; for example, Edna Lewis and Scott Peacock created a BLT salad in The Gift of Southern Cooking by cutting the ingredients into 1 inch pieces and tossing in mayonnaise. This variation was described by The New York Times writer Julia Reed as “even more perfect than a BLT”.

Vegans and vegetarians may replace bacon with tempeh or tofu as meat analogue instead. Alternatively they can use mock bacon.

 

 

Kitchen Hint of the Day!

January 14, 2021 at 6:00 AM | Posted in Kitchen Hints | Leave a comment
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Using Parchment Paper…………

Lining your baking pans with parchment paper is more reliable than greasing and allows you to transfer cookies, breads and cakes without them tearing or falling apart. On a greased sheet, cookie bottoms can over-brown, but on parchment they bake perfectly. Bake on!

Kitchen Hint of the Day!

September 15, 2020 at 6:00 AM | Posted in Kitchen Hints | Leave a comment
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How about that Celery………………….

Pop a celery stick into the bread bag if it starts to go bad. This is said to restore the freshness for a bit.

Kitchen Hint of the Day!

September 7, 2020 at 6:00 AM | Posted in Kitchen Hints | Leave a comment
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No Food Processor, No problem……………………

Make your own dried breadcrumbs by grating stale bread on the coarse side of a grater, then spread the crumbs in a thin layer over a baking sheet. Bake for 30 minutes at 275 degrees, giving them a good shake halfway through. The golden, crispy crumbs will last in a sealed container for up to two weeks.

Garlic-Herb Parmesan Dipping Sticks

August 30, 2020 at 6:01 AM | Posted in diabetes, diabetes friendly, Diabetes Self Management | Leave a comment
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I’m passing along a recipe for Garlic-Herb Parmesan Dipping Sticks.Delicious and Diabetic Friendly Garlic-Herb Parmesan Dipping Sticks, perfect for any Meal! To make these you’ll be needing Refrigerated Pizza Dough, Light Garlic-and-Herb Spreadable Cheese, Shredded Italian Cheese Blend, Dried Oregano, and Marinara Sauce. This recipe is also from the Diabetes Self Management website where you can find a huge selection of Diabetic Friendly Recipes, Diabetes News, Diabetes Management Tips, and more! You can also subscribe to the Diabetes Self Management Magazine. Each issue is packed with Diabetes News and Diabetic Friendly Recipes. I’ve left a link to subscribe at the end of the post. Enjoy and Eat Healthy in 2020! https://www.diabetesselfmanagement.com/

Garlic-Herb Parmesan Dipping Sticks
These dipping sticks are perfect for pairing with marinara sauce or ranch dressing!

Ingredients
1 package (13.8 ounces) refrigerated pizza dough
3/4 cup light garlic-and-herb spreadable cheese
3/4 cup shredded Italian cheese blend
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
Warm marinara sauce and/or reduced-fat ranch salad dressing (optional)

Directions
Yield: 12 servings
Serving size: 2 dipping sticks

1 – Preheat oven to 400°F. Spray baking sheet with nonstick cooking spray.

2 – Roll out dough on lightly floured surface to 12-inch square. Place prepared baking sheet. Bake 10 minutes.

3 – Spread garlic-and-herb spreadable cheese evenly over crust. Layer evenly with Italian cheese blend, Parmesan cheese, and oregano. Bake 15 minutes or until golden brown.

4 – Slice lengthwise into 8 rows; slice opposite direction into 3 rows. Serve with marinara sauce or ranch for dipping, if desired.

Nutrition Information:
Calories: 135 calories, Carbohydrates: 17 g, Protein: 6 g, Fat: 5 g, Saturated Fat: 3 g, Cholesterol: 11 mg, Sodium: 404 mg, Fiber: 1 g
https://www.diabetesselfmanagement.com/recipes/snack/garlic-herb-parmesan-dipping-sticks/

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Inside every issue you’ll find…
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Kitchen Hint of the Day!

August 17, 2020 at 6:00 AM | Posted in Kitchen Hints | Leave a comment
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Save that Rice………………………………

Rice can be stored in the fridge for a longer amount of time if you store a slice of toast on it. The toast will absorb excess moisture and keep the rice fluffy and fresh.

Kitchen Hint of the Day!

July 19, 2020 at 6:00 AM | Posted in Kitchen Hints | Leave a comment
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Use a celery stick…………………..

Put a celery stick into the bread bag if it starts to go bad. This is said to restore the freshness for a bit. Good to know in this hot and humid weather!

Kitchen Hint of the Day!

May 17, 2020 at 6:00 AM | Posted in Kitchen Hints | Leave a comment
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Save the Bread scraps……………………….

Put bread ends or scraps into a big bag in the freezer to save for homemade croutons, stuffing, or breadcrumbs.

One of America’s Favorites – Toast

May 4, 2020 at 6:02 AM | Posted in One of America's Favorites | Leave a comment
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A slice of bread, untoasted (left) and toasted (right)

Toast is a form of bread that has been browned by exposure to radiant heat. This browning is the result of a Maillard reaction, altering the flavor of the bread and making it firmer so that it is easier to spread toppings on it. Toasting is a common method of making stale bread more palatable. Bread is often toasted using a toaster, but toaster ovens are also used. Though many types of bread can be toasted the most commonly used is “sliced bread”, referring to bread that is already sliced and bagged upon purchase and may be white, brown, multigrain, etc.

Toast is commonly eaten with butter or margarine, and sweetened toppings, such as jam or jelly. Regionally, savory spreads, such as peanut butter or yeast extracts, may also be popular. When buttered, toast may also be served as an accompaniment to savory dishes, especially soups or stews, or topped with heartier ingredients like eggs or baked beans as a light meal. Toast is a common breakfast food. While slices of bread are most common, bagels and English muffins are also toasted.

Scientific studies in the early 2000s found that toast may contain carcinogens (acrylamide) caused by the browning process.

In a modern home kitchen, the usual method of toasting bread is by the use of a toaster, an electrical appliance made for that purpose. To use a modern toaster, sliced bread is placed into the narrow slots on the top of the toaster, the toaster is tuned to the correct setting (some may have more elaborate settings than others) and a lever on the front or side is pushed down. The toast is ready when the lever pops up along with the toast. If the bread is insufficiently toasted, the lever can be pressed down again.

A classic two-slot toaster

Bread toasted in a conventional toaster can “sweat” when it is served (i.e. water collects on the surface of the cooled toast). This occurs because moisture in the bread becomes steam while being toasted due to heat and when cooled the steam condenses into water droplets on the surface of the bread.

It can also be toasted by a conveyor toaster, which device is often used in hotels, restaurants, and other food service locations. It works by having one heating element on the top and one on the bottom with a metal conveyor belt in the middle which carries the toast between the two heating elements. This allows toast to be made consistently as more slices can be added at any time without waiting for previous ones to pop up.

Bread can also be toasted under a grill (or broiler), in an open oven, or lying on an oven rack. This “oven toast” is usually buttered before toasting. Toaster ovens are special small appliances made for toasting bread or for heating small amounts of other foods.

Bread can also be toasted by holding it near but not directly over an open flame, such as a campfire or fireplace; special toasting utensils (e.g. toasting forks) are made for this purpose. Before the invention of modern cooking appliances such as toasters and grills, bread has been produced in ovens for millennia, toast can be made in the same oven.

Many brands of ready sliced bread are available, some of which specifically market their suitability for toasting.

Left Toast with butter and vegemite. Right With butter and strawberry jam.

In modern days, toast is most commonly eaten with butter or margarine spread over it, and may be served with preserves, spreads, or other toppings in addition to or instead of butter. Toast with jam or marmalade is popular. A few other condiments that can be enjoyed with toast are chocolate spread, cream cheese, and peanut butter. Yeast extracts such as Marmite in the UK, New Zealand and South Africa, and Vegemite in Australia are national traditions. Some sandwiches, such as the BLT, call for toast to be used rather than bread.

Toast is an important component of many breakfasts, and is also important in some traditional bland specialty diets for people with gastrointestinal problems such as diarrhea.

In the United Kingdom, toast is part of a traditional breakfast: it’s often incorporated in a full breakfast or eaten with baked beans. A dish popular with children there is a soft-boiled egg eaten with toast soldiers at breakfast. Strips of toast (the soldiers) are dipped into the runny yolk of a boiled egg through a hole made in the top of the eggshell, and eaten.

In southern Sri Lanka, it is common for toast to be paired with a curry soup and mint tea. In Japan, people like to toast thick slices of bread. Toast became a staple dish in Japan after World War 2, especially after it was introduced in school lunches. Street vendors in South Korea serve toast with a variety of toppings, usually fried eggs, vegetables and slices of meat, topped with sauces. Korean toast is to be eaten as a sandwich.

By 2013, “artisanal toast” had become a significant food trend in upscale American cities like San Francisco, where some commentators decried the increasing number of restaurants and bakeries selling freshly made toast at what was perceived to be an unreasonably high price.

Avocado toast is seen as a symbol of millennial culture.

Cheese and marshmallows are also toasted by exposure to dry radiant heat. A toasted cheese sandwich features toasted cheese and toasted bread. Bagels, English muffins, Pop Tart pastries and crumpets are foods that can be toasted, too.

 

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