Monthly Archives: September 2016

Make Healthy Recipe Treats

Looking for some healthy recipe treats to maintain your diet and at the same time reward yourself on your success so far? Here are ways you can make them treats and deserts healthier.

Ice cream – If you’ve got that ice cream craving, look for substituting ice cream with frozen yoghurt instead. It’s generally lower in fat and calories. However also be aware of their sugar content as they can be high. There are low fat, low sugar frozen yogurts available, so find them and treat yourself. Low fat ice-cream can also be an option but make sure you satisfy your craving in moderation.

Fruit crumble – If you’re making a fruit crumble, make sure you choose vitamin rich seasonal fruits. Make crumble with oatmeal, spices toasted seeds and wholemeal flour which all contain complex carbohydrates and are high in fibre, mean you’ll feel fuller after a smaller serving. If you must use a little butter and sugar, but you can also sweeten the dish with dried fruits, raisins and spices instead.

Creams and Custards – When using creams or custard for cakes or sweets, always opt for the low fat versions. Including low fat yoghurt, creme fraiche and frozen yoghurt. Low fat custard can also be classed at a superfood as it’s low in calories and contain bone strengthening calcium.

Fruit pie – Pack it with superfoods such as blueberries, and also add nuts and seeds to the mix to increase your fruit and healthy fat intakes. The pastry for pies always contain the majority of the calories so make it a bottomless one, and have the pastry just on the top. This cuts more than half the calories just from the pastry.

Finding healthy recipe treats is actually not difficult. There are always low fat, low sugar alternative to substitute for traditional recipe ingredients, and on top of that if you just stick to correct portion sizes, i.e. one piece of cake no bigger than the size of your palm, you’ll have no trouble rewarding yourself and not feeling guilty at the same time. Make dieting easier by eating more of the best foods for you.

Tips to Make Money Blogging With Food Reviews and Ratings

Most bloggers love to make money blogging about how to make money online. The interest of blogging has come at a stage where people would blog for anything that concerns about money (example, loan, insurance, credit card) than anything else. Today, I am going to turn the table around and share with you how to blog about food and make money at the same time. Sounds impossible? Read on then.

Most food lovers would usually be interested in food recipes and food reviews. Hence if you focus and write about them well, you can expect some good readership and followers for your blog.

Food Reviews Or Food Recipes?

If you have a great recipe to share, why not just write a blog post on it and share with your fellow readers. However, I would not suggest that you copy a recipe from somewhere and post it, or create a recipe out of your own when you have never try the food yourself. You may drive your readers away consequently. Hence, I would not encourage you to write about food recipes unless you are pretty sure of what you desire to share.

Assuming that you are a food lover, food reviews would be an easier choice and more popular approach since most people love to eat and keen to know where they can find the best food in town. Below are 5 useful tips that you may follow to make money blogging about food (particularly reviews and ratings).

1. Take Good Food Display Photos When Served

Food lovers usually love to see nice photos on the food display when served, follows by the food reviews itself. Food photos taken in very bad environment (eg. poor lighting) would require some Photo-shop skills to “touch up” the photo so that it looks nice and appealing to your readers. With these skills, you will be able to display “mouth-watering” photos to accompany your reviews. Great isn’t it? 🙂

2. Add Your Profile If You Are A Popular Food Reviewer

If you are a well-known and popular food reviewer, why not add your profile to the homepage of your blog and give yourself an introduction? This would add credential to your blog and your reviews would naturally attract tons of readers due to your influence and popularity.

3. Provide Honest Food Ratings And Reviews

Apart from appealing photos, food lovers love to see ratings and reviews too. Give yourself a range eg. out of 5 stars on how you would rate the food that you have tried. Write your most honest review in short paragraphs. Do not always give nice reviews, remember to mention the bad points too. However, you should always support your criticism with facts.

Tip: Remember! Your first food review is crucial to the success of your food review blog. Be more descriptive and always share your taste well.

4. Keep Your Readers Coming Back. Gather Your Supporters!

Your reader today might be gone for tomorrow. So how to keep them coming back? Well, apart from providing regular food reviews, provide means for them to return too. First, setup an RSS Feed for them to subscribe to your blog just like mine “Subscribe To My RSS”. Whenever you post a new review, they will be notified and read in their own RSS reader. Another way is to create a Twitter account like what I did so that they can be your “follower” and get updates whenever you are reviewing food again.

5. Monetize Your Blog With AdSense

Fastest and easiest way to monetize your blog is to add in Google AdSense ads. AdSense is the best pay-per-click advertising program so far as it rewards well and display ads that are most relevant to your blog content (food reviews). Competitive keywords like “food reviews” or “Spanish Food” will drive tons of visitors to your blog if you work on your SEO well.

Great Expat Blogs That Focus on Food

Whether you are planning to move to Italy or simply dreaming about your next trip, reading expat blogs is a fantastic way to learn more about the culture and everyday life of the typical person living in Italy.

In this article, we’re focusing on the best Italian food blogs, specifically those written by expats living in Rome. From recipes to photos to interviews with Italian foodies, expat blogs with a food-focus are sure to get your tummy growling!

These three blogs showcase Roman food culture at its best:

    • Parla Food: Katie Parla is a travel writer, food critic and blogger living in Rome. Considered by many to be the top expat food blog in the entire country, Katie’s blog dives in depth into the food culture. From honest restaurant reviews, to “behind the scenes” posts about how food actually reaches the table, to interviews with chefs, olive oil producers and other fascinating Italians, Katie’s blog is the go-to blog of choice for those interested in learning more about Italian food culture.
    • Rachel Eats: Rachel’s blog focuses a lot on her experiences with food in Rome. Her gorgeous photos show the process of the putting together some quintessential (and also experimental!) Roman dishes. The voice on her blog is honest, witty, fun and introspective. She may not post as regularly as other bloggers, but every post is meaningful — no filler here.
  • Aglio, Olio e Peperoncino: Warning: do not read this blog on an empty stomach! Elenora’s recipes, photos and insights will have you running to the grocery to cook her recipes as quickly as possible. When you’re feeling especially brave you can attempt one of her homemade pasta recipes. Be sure to visit her recipe archive, which categorizes her posts into meals, desserts and other specialties.

Even if a move or trip to Italy isn’t on the horizon, you can live vicariously through these three talented ladies writing about their adventures with food in Italy. Their recipes and insights are sure to inspire you in the kitchen.

With only three blogs highlighted above it’s pretty clear that this isn’t an exhaustive list of Italian food blogs. So, be sure to check out the blogrolls or favorite link sections on each of these sites for more recommendations for Italian food blogs. Or, simply search the web for other fantastic blogs!

Things That Will Change Your Mind About Food

Every day we’re bombarded at all angles by cat videos, friend’s engagement photos, political ads or scandals and stupid people doing stupid things for attention. And it’s not just social media anymore– even the local news networks are doing segments featuring a YouTube video of the day. Modern attention spans are 10 seconds or less, and to be honest most things I see are hardly worth those 10 seconds. But once in a while, amidst the barrage of worthless information you come across an article, a documentary or even a book that changes your outlook about life. It can be about food, farming, business or politics, something near or dear to your heart or something you’ve never even thought about before. The people creating these kinds of stories are the ones that give me hope in humanity.

I think that people are more likely to press play on a video than to read an article or go out and buy a book, so listed below are the 6 best food documentaries and TED talks that have changed the way I think about food– the way I choose what to buy, who I buy it from, how I prepare it, how I talk to my clients about it, and so on. Formal education only taught me so much. These documentaries and talks have forced me to dig deeper.

1. Forks Over Knives

This was the doc that inspired that phone call. The film examines the notion that sickness is caused by food and that most diseases can be reversed simply by eating the right foods. There are interviews with farmers, scientists and normal, average, every day people wanting to live to see another day. At that point in my life, my dinners revolved around meat. I didn’t know how to begin to plan a meal that didn’t have chicken, beef or pork at the center of the plate. I started my blog in 2013 after a few months experimenting in the kitchen and as you can see 98% of my recipes are meatless. It took some creativity and a little research but now I can’t imagine my life any other way. Don’t let the meatless message scare you off. It’s not about being vegetarian or vegan. It’s not an all or nothing choice. It is about being conscious of your decisions and taking an active role in your health with your fork.

2. TED Talk with Birke Baehr

If you’ve got 6 minutes, listen to an 11-year old explain in simple terms what’s wrong with our food system. These issues are not just something that dietitians or scientists care about, they are issues that are effecting every single person, adult and child, in the US. (All TED talks are available online).

3. Food, Inc.

Food, Inc. accomplishes a very simple task: showing you where your food comes from. You can choose to remain blind and ignorant to how your spaghetti and meatballs shows up on your plate or you can choose to have a say in what you put in your body, how it’s raised and where it comes from.

4. Farmaggedon

Farmageddon tells the story of small, family farms aiming to provide safe, healthy foods to consumers as well as feed their own families who have been shut down by government-backed agencies and corporations. The film exposes what most of us are unaware of– we don’t have as much freedom as we think when it comes to choosing our food.

5. TED Talk with Jamie Oliver

How and why we need to teach every child about food

6. TED Talk with Dan Barber: A foie gras parable

Foie gras is made by force feeding ducks so much food that their livers become fatty and enlarged. How is it possible to make this a sustainable, cruelty-free practice?

Remarkably Simple Ways to Consume Comfort Food

When I am speaking to clients and groups on the topic of designing a healthier life, comments about unhealthy food consumption often arise as they relate to stress resulting from uber-caffeinated careers and lifestyles.

The key is not to give up comfort food but to allow a spirit of awareness to infuse our comforting food choices.

When times get rough, and last week qualifies as a particularly challenging week, we understandably reach for comfort. If you find yourself reaching for more chips and ice cream out of emotional hunger or lack of control, you are not alone. Experts estimate that 75% of eating too much or reaching for unhealthy food is caused by emotions.

I read cooking magazines, books and blogs for fun. One way I express creativity is through food creation and presentation-culling, curating and concocting dishes for family and friends.

Since summer season is fast approaching and tragic events can take a toll on food consumption, I curated some comfort food recipes you’ll love-without the mega calories, preservatives or guilt.

Here are some traditional comfort foods with a twist ~ they are healthy, simple to make and satisfyingly delicious.

Egg in a Hole

Breakfast is my favorite meal, and I love invoking a spirit of play when I cook. Reminds me of back when I served our children their pancakes on Sunday mornings. This is an excellent source of protein at any time of day.

The Pioneer Woman

Ann Marie “Ree” Drummond is an award-winning American blogger, No. 1 New York Times bestselling author, food writer, and television personality who lives on a working ranch outside of Pawhuska, Oklahoma. Her food focuses on real ingredients – wholesome comfort food without all the added preservatives.

Baked Mac & Cheese

Perhaps my favorite comfort food of all time. My mother often made a very cheesy rendition when my childhood friends came to our house in New Jersey on Saturday afternoon. It was so memorable that my childhood friends still descriptively recall that culinary experience.

Almond Crusted Salmon

Although salmon may not come to mind as a comfort food, it is a food choice that comes with many dietary benefits, most importantly, providing a source high in omega-3 fatty acids, to help lower cholesterol and blood pressure levels.

Gingered Sweet Potato and Carrot Soup

Potatoes and soup are always on my list of comfort foods. Here’s a two-fer that deliciously combines sweet potatoes and soup.

Flourless Chocolate Cake

As a genetically predisposed chocoholic, this is forks-up the best recipe I have found. And it’s gluten-free. Credit for the recipe goes to Laurie Colwin, an American novelist who wrote about families and food and wrote a column in Gourmet magazine for a few years. She produced two cookbooks, Home Cooking and More Home Cooking.

Comfort Food Tips

Recognize cues and patterns of eating. Mindless or mindful? Certain times of day, around certain people? What patterns do you want to continue, want to change?

Ask yourself what you need. More healthy recipes? Less eating out at restaurants? An inventory of fridge and pantry shelves? Minimizing on-demand unhealthy options?

Increase mindfulness about food choices. Choose one or two areas that matter and set intentions. Write them down and tell someone who will help keep you accountable.

It’s humanizing to make mistakes. When you slip, keep going! Don’t judge each lapse, keep the overall nourishing strategy in mind.

Experiment and play. Self-management around food does not require mean-girl severity and deprivation. A sense of abundance and spirit of play are positive, energetic perspectives to constructively change eating patterns.

Celebrate with non-food rewards when you are successful making healthy choices

Seasoning Foods With Real Salt Vs Table Salt

The number one treatment for cellulite is based on eating the right foods, balanced with a good workout routine, focusing on strength training around the lower body.

For the diet side of cellulite reduction, it’s usually said that you must reduce your salt intake, as it’s bad for your health overall. If you enjoy adding that pinch of table salt to your dinner, for a bit of flavor, you can find yourself switching away from foods you’d otherwise enjoy.

Brining your turkey is one example of that, as it that can take what’s associated with a dry white meat, and turn it into a deliciously, tender and juicy turkey that’s mouth-wateringly delicious.

But if you’re on the traditional anti cellulite diet recommendations, then you’ll probably be looking to avoid the high concentration of derivatives found in the traditional salt.

That doesn’t mean that you have to cut out all salt from your diet though. In fact, you can make a real difference to your skin by including salt. That is provided you eat the right salts. Natural “real” salt. Salt of the culinary nature, which is organic.

The difference is the way the salt is made. Table salt is the one that most of the scientific studies you find, relating to salt consumption are based on the worlds most widely available salt. The table salt, mass-produced, and enthralled with a platitude of derivatives.

Bad times!

Organic salt is found all over the world. It’s salt that fish live in. Place a fish in a bowl with table salt added and they die. Do the same with sea salt and they thrive.

It’s that mineral salt, enriched with nutrients that help your skin look tremendous, and when taken regularly can do a wonder on cellulite.

By nature, the body needs and maintains a high amount of nutrients and trace minerals. It’s how every organ and bone in your body is supported to function efficiently. It’s also why water consumption is extremely important for health reasons.

When you think of an IV put into someone in hospital, it’s never just plain water, with no additions. It’s liquid fluid, chock full of nutrients and minerals, and it’s necessary when the body is low on them.

The right concentration of “real salt” can give you that necessary nourishment for optimum health.

The key is to replace high sodium chloride based salt, to a salt that’s dense in nutrients.

The benefits to your health can stem from seeing a visible reduction in cellulite appearance, to successfully lowering your blood pressure, and even reducing fatigue.

Summertime Snacks

Most everyone cheers when summer is on its way. Summer is almost here! In fact, in some areas of the country, summer is here for all practical purposes. In summer we have more freedom and fun times, relaxation in the sun, maybe even a neat vacation.

Summer also of course means hot weather. Summer weather can make even the most put-together person feel like they might just melt! You’ll want to have some ways to refresh yourself. It is a good idea to have ways to cool yourself off and feel better.

Snacks are also important during the summer months. You are outside, you will be doing more leisure activities, snacks can keep you energized on the go. Snacks can also help you cool yourself down if you choose wisely.

Many popular summer snack foods are only available in the summer months. You should try them this summer, don’t let another season go by without enjoying these treats.

Frozen yogurt. Right now frozen yogurt is hugely popular and for good reason. It is delicious, and it is actually pretty healthy. Frozen yogurt comes in many different tasty flavors, it is cooling, and it has far fewer calories than ice cream. Try this for a delicious and low calorie summer snack.

Iced coffee. You may love your coffee during the winter months, when curling up with a steaming cup is just the thing for warming up when snow is falling outside. But, you may think, coffee is best for the winter and you need to pick different beverages for the summer months. How do you get the caffeine you need without the heat?

Put that coffee over ice instead! It’s just as delicious served cold. Other cold drinks that will give you the boost you are looking for include chai tea over ice.

Snow cones. If you are at an outdoor concert or fair or festival, keep an eye out for the snow cone vendor. Snow cones are sweet cool treats that are inexpensive and easy to carry while you are walking around. They’re also generally only available in summer, so if you don’t try one now you won’t be able to get one for many more months.

A Seasonal Look at the Best Seasonal Foods

Sitting here staring at my computer, the only thing that kept floating into my head was how hungry I was and what my favourite food would be. This might seem like the normal habit of the ever expanding populous, but for me I always need to be a little more creative about the whole thing. To take my mind off the delicious things floating through my mind and draw my attention away from the fact that I had cold pizza in the fridge (breakfast of kings). More than what my favourite food was it was which season my favourite food came from that drew my mind to a top four seasonal highlights of the whole year.

As we are just coming out of it, lets start with Winter. Its a time of year were you are feeling cold and therefore long for things that warm or cheer you up. Now the simple thing here would be to say turkey with a full roast vegetable bonanza, wash that down with a medium to sweet white wine followed by a glass of Whiskey and Stones Ginger wine. Sounds lush doesn’t it, but I would have to say that that it was actually receiving a Christmas Hamper, A feast of fresh food that I didn’t have a clue was going to be sat on the front doorstep until the delivery man came a knocking. It included a wonderful quarter ring of wonderful Quenby Hall Stilton, a side of Loch Fyne’s incomparable smoked salmon. Glenlivet and Noval Port, a James Chocolates Giant Mosaic Bar and some gorgeously smooth coffee that I can’t quite remember at this moment of typing. Its a great type of year for foods you normally wouldn’t go for but I think what gave this the edge was the surprise value and the quality that made the sharing of food that much more enjoyable.

Now for Spring I would say that the next food on my events list would be, a Gammon roast, scratchings with apple sauce and once again roast vegetables. This however is slightly beaten to the spring time title by the gorgeous baked goods that are flying about in this season. For starters you have pancakes which can be sweet or savory and have the fun element of being able to be flung through the air (Cast iron pans a little heavy for this and make dents in surfaces). My close second on this are Hot cross buns toasted with butter plastered over them (these with a cup of tea take me off somewhere, not sure where, but believe me its nice!). A few of you might have instantly imagined Easter baskets brimming over with chocolate eggs, which of course is nice but always leaves me feeling like I have just given myself chocolate poisoning.

The Summer season is a weird one for me with Curries being high on my great seasonal summer foods, I particularly like Thai curries and soups for their fragrance and lightness. Italian foods however have a way of always getting just ahead with the diversity of tastes matched with functionality (yes the pizza in the fridge does keep drawing me to it, but I must resist). The food I have chosen for the summer time however is the trusty clotted cream ice cream. Its a gorgeous ice cream that when you are hot has no comparison, it even makes you feel better when you have had a bad day at work and need something to take your mind of things.

Autumn on the other hand takes us optimistically back into the darker times of the year where the leaves are falling from the trees and the need for warmth is starting to draw in the warmer foods again. This time of year for me can’t be beaten by the good old Cornish pasty, its something that you can pop in your lunch box and makes you smile when you pull it out for lunch. It also goes really well hot with a pint of Guinness. I did think to say Stews with a round of dumplings placed on the top, but the sheer functionality of the pasty tops this simmering stunner. I hope you have found my seasonal selection tempting, I have now worked myself up to the lovely pizza that awaits me in the fridge, after all it is almost the summer time!

What is Seasonal Food

Seasonal foods are foods that are currently grown locally. There are many reasons for eating seasonal foods including:

o Leaving a smaller carbon footprint – there aren’t transportation or refrigeration costs.
o Lower costs – you’ll avoid paying for transportation for long haul produce, often from other continents.
o Supporting the local economy – locally grown produce keeps farmlands in the community.
o Reconnecting with nature’s cycles – eating what the earth produces at the time the earth produces it.

But, beyond these reason to eat seasonal foods, there is the impact it has on your diet and your weight loss efforts. Many people think they don’t like certain fruits and vegetables because they’ve only tried them when they are out of season.

Hot house produce is not nearly as full of flavor as seasonal food is. Genetic modifications of foods for transportation and longer store shelf life often reduces the food’s taste to near zero.

But it’s not just fruit and vegetables that are affected by the cycles of nature. Seafood is best when it’s caught in season and there is a natural cycle to meat slaughter as well.

How do you eat seasonal food? Well consider the following by season:

o Spring recipes include asparagus, lettuces, blueberries, spinach, strawberries, potatoes, and onions.

o Summer brings on a virtual cornucopia of foods including berries, tomatoes, summer squash, green bell peppers, jalapeño peppers, and corn.

o Fall recipes feature squashes, cabbage, potatoes, spinach, apples, and sweet potatoes.

o In the winter, recipes will include avocadoes, cauliflower, broccoli, green beans, and pumpkin.

Once you get in touch with seasonal foods, you will also develop an appreciation for the food cycle. This heightened awareness of your food will make you a better dieter.

Importance of Eating Seasonal Foods

One’s life always comes a complete circle. Where earlier on people consumed particular foods only when these were in season, things had been altered to the degree in which consumers could acquire any kind of food items in the food store, irrespective of its seasonal supply. However, yet again we are shifting back to the old method, yet there’s a marked variation. Before consumers didn’t understand much better, and so they weren’t living in the scientifically innovative time period in which non seasonal foods was basically at hand.

Nowadays, technologies will make it possible for us to have strawberries during winter but scientists and even analysts tend to be showing us that people need to avoid them. Here is why:

If you buy seasonal manufacture and fruit, you already know for a fact that merely a time returning this fruit or even vegetable may be preparing to cut up and also serve in the salad was a part of a plant. The nourishment levels of healthy, seasonal food is very good and it’s unsurprising that the stage goes down substantially, the more time the meals stays unconsumed.

Which means that, it’s actually a eat freshly harvested fruit, as well as freshly collected produce. By doing this, you will also be promoting the neighborhood farmers and nearby markets, which, in turn, can be useful for the entire overall economy.

Grocery stores add shine to the vegetables and fruit to prevent them looking delicious and inviting. By gloss, most of us mean that food markets and also huge food chains take pains to make sure that meals are attractive although it is not really in season. To do this, they will naturally give up for the nutrition level of the food. Which means that, whom loses out in the long run? We, the consumer.

Seasonal foods are usually pretty much healthy and when you’re just going to be having non seasonal foods, do keep in mind which they are most likely packed with inorganic sprays as well. Healthy eating goes down numerous notches when you cave in to eating non-seasonal meals.

Seasonal meals are great for the ecosystem too. Even though you do not have a single green thumb, most of us can be excellent environmentalists by decreasing the number of foods miles in which food should make just before it reaches up to your table. The greater local you consume, the smaller chances of using food that have been flown in from midway across the world, in effect consuming that much more fuel.

Everyone is gradually working towards locally produced seasonal food. Extremely commended chefs and foodies like Gordon Ramsay make it a point show them locally produced seasonal food within their menus and which usually a basis for this change. These days, the attention is definitely on style, quality and nutritionary goodness which you obtain from meals.

Meals that can be developed out of season are sometimes sprayed with chemicals of all kinds because it takes a tiny folding of nature’s principles for these foods in order to live the strange season by which they are produced to the community.

Seasonal foods are also cheap because it doesn’t cost the earth to create them each time whenever they shouldn’t be accessible essentially. Seasonal foods tend to be cheaper to provide and hence, more affordable to buy as well.

Nature carries a cycle of its own for an excellent cause. The foods that show up throughout winter are usually since they are of the heating type and make you stay warm. Likewise, throughout summer you could have cooling foods which keep yourself cool. If we revert this natural sequence, we are probably to not get any of nature’s rewards which are intended for us. Moreover, many of us could be performing more harm than good by eating foods which are definitely not in season.

The same greens or fruit produced in seasons in which they are not intended to be around, seem to have different dietary values. It goes a lot to demonstrate which indeed there is some thing to be mentioned for consuming seasonal foods. In reality, study conducted by researchers shows this very concept, therefore it’s usually a good idea to consume fresh, seasonal food.

The greater chemical preservatives that are added to unseasonal foods the more nutrients they lose and give you no health advantages by any means. And so, essentially you’re spending money on harmful preservatives and not for nutrition if you buy unseasonal foods.

One of the greatest factors why you need to opt for seasonal foods is because they are filled with antioxidants which are consequently healthy for you. Antioxidants fight free radicals, make you stay young and keep diseases from increasing. Look for fresh seasonal berries and enjoy them whenever you can since they are really extremely good for your health.

Seasonal fruits and berries may be integrated into your everyday diet plan without any hassles. Combine them into smoothies or make juices from them and relish the goodness that they give.

Seasonal foods are a way of reconnecting using the routine which nature meant for us. It can help you feel a natural getting instead of someone who is ruled through the vagaries of food markets.

Our own forefathers may have eaten seasonal food since they did not have much choice. All of us conversely can make the best and knowledgeable choice by choosing to eat just those foods that are produced seasonally. Maintaining a healthy diet is important due to the fact otherwise, you are doing your body a massive disservice. Eat seasonal and be healthy is the new age concept certainly.