5 Reasons Why You Should Buy Wine Country Gift Baskets

wine country gift baskets

Are you in the process of planning a trip to wine country?  Whether your trip involves traveling an hour to the wine country region of California or if your trip requires a cross-country flight or drive, you are sure to be pleased with your experience.  Visiting wine country is ideal for excellent wine tasting and wine education, but it is also a unique opportunity to buy wine country gift baskets.

When it comes to buying wine country gift baskets, many vacationers, especially those who must travel long distances, are concerned about doing so.

It may be inconvenient to fly back home with bags full of wine baskets, but it is essential to remember that doing so is not your only option.  If you flew to wine country, instead of drove, you can often arrange to have your purchases, which should include gift baskets, shipped directly to your home, or even to your gift recipient.  This is something that most wineries shops will do for a small fee, or you can handle the shipping arrangements yourself.

Since you do have some options, when looking to buy wine country gift baskets and other souvenirs, you are encouraged to do so.  Five reasons why you should are outlined below:

1 – Wine Country Gift Baskets Make Great Gifts

Wine country gifts baskets make great gifts, especially for those who are back home.  If you have any close friends or family members who either love wine or who would have loved to visited wine country with you, a wine country gift baskets may be the perfect gift.

It is also important to mention the options that you have.  When many of us think of wine country gift baskets, wine is often the first thing that comes to mind.  While almost all specialty made wine country gift baskets do contain wine, many also have so much more.  Other popular items include California cheese, wine jelly, and so forth.

2 – Wine Country Gift Baskets Make Great Souvenirs

Although gift baskets are often associated with Christmas gifts, birthday gifts, and gifts for other special occasions, a wine country gift basket can also be the perfect souvenir for yourself.  What is careful about this option is that you can choose the perfect gift baskets, such as one that comes with wine and chocolate or one that comes with wine and California cheese.  Whether you want to drink the wine in your basket or save it as a memento of your trip, you should purchase a wine country-themed gift basket.

3 – Wine Country Gift Baskets Are Easy to Buy

Ease of buying is another reason why all wine country visitors are encouraged to buy wine gift baskets, either for themselves or those they know.  In most wine countries, you will find some gift shops and specialty stores.  These locations likely sell wine country gift baskets, along with other specialty California items.  Most public vineyards and wineries have gift shops right on site, and many make their gift baskets.  In these instances, you can save time by making your purchases when you are on a wine tour.

4 – You Can Buy Wine Country Gift Baskets Straight from the Source

As previously stated, most public vineyards and wineries have onsite gift shops that sell wine country gift baskets, as well as assortments of other wine-related or themed gifts.  By making your purchases through onsite gift stores and shops, you are going straight to the Source.  Although you may not think about it at the time, buying a gift basket from a local wine country winery or vineyard helps support the local economy.  Even if you are not initially from the area, you should be proud of this.

5 – Why Not?

Finally, the most significant reason you should buy wine country gift baskets on your next trip to a wine country is that why not?  Honestly, you are there, and if you traveled a long distance to get to the wine country, you might not ever have the opportunity to return.  Therefore, if you can, spend a few dollars to buy a small wine country gift basket.

 

 

Whether you keep that gift basket for yourself or give it to someone that you know, you will likely not regret your purchase.

Meal of the Week (Turkey Lasagna Rolls with Salad and Muffin Melts)

Meal of the Week: Turkey Lasagna Rolls w/ Salad

Here’s a fun way to enjoy lasagna but in a more individualized manner that will help keep calorie count low and in turn, help keep you focused on healthy nutrition. Even though portion size and ingredients are a tad different than usual, that in no way sacrifices flavor or taste. If the meal is prepared as outlined below, you should have enough leftovers to make some tasty muffin melts that you’ll enjoy for work the next day. Those who desire a vegetarian/meat-less version simply do without the lean ground turkey and opt for an alternative of your liking.

Equipment Needed

– colander

– large pot for water/pasta

– large skillet for meat

– medium size stovetop pot

– large mixing bowl

– large oven pan

– parchment paper

– aluminum foil

Ingredients (Makes 4-6 servings)

1 1/2 pounds lean ground turkey

One box lasagna

One jar Marinara sauce

1 cup diced spinach

1 cup ricotta cheese

1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese

3/4 cup cottage cheese (small curd)

1/2 cup Parmesan cheese

One tablespoon oregano

Two tablespoons olive oil

Two tablespoons minced garlic

One egg

salt and pepper

For Leftover Muffin Melts

– whole wheat English muffins

 

Directions

*Preheat oven to 425 degrees

1. You will need to boil a large pot of water (with optional dashes salt) to cook the lasagna al dente for about eight minutes. When that’s finished carefully remove and drain using a colander.

2. While the water is boiling if you’re planning to use lean ground turkey (or, any other meat) for this meal you can start cooking this next. Open the container and empty the contents into a stove top pan, add some salt and pepper to taste, and on medium heat start dicing the meat with a wooden spoon. Cook until desired wellness is achieved.

3. While the meat and lasagna noodles are cooking, you can carefully dice the spinach leaves into small pieces using a sharp knife until you have a cup worth. In a separate small stove top pot, add 2 tablespoons of olive oil along with the 2 tablespoons minced garlic and the cup of diced spinach on low heat stir for a few minutes.

4. In a large mixing bowl add the egg, 1 cup Ricotta cheese, oregano, 3/4 cup cottage cheese, the garlic/spinach mixture, 1/4 cup parmesan cheese along with pinches of salt and pepper. Mix together well w, ith a fork.

5. Right about now the meat and lasagna should be about done cooking. The ower meat to a simmer and add the entire bottle of marinara sauce and mix well. You will have a nice, tasty meat mixture now.

6. Use a large piece of parchment paper and get ready to make the lasagna rolls. Simply lay out 1 entire noodle on the parchment paper and use a spoon to spread the cheese mixture evenly and thinly across one entire side. Then carefully roll the lasagna up from one end to the other.

7. Before you place the lasagna roll in your oven pan, spoon some of the meat sauce mixture across the bottom of the pan to give it a thin coating. Then you can place the lasagna rolls side by side but not touching. Continue to repeat this process until you finish all the lasagna rolls you plan to cook. You may have to use two separate oven-safe pans depending on how many rolls you plan to make.

8. Once all the lasagna rolls are prepared and arranged in the pan, spoon the remaining sauce over each one of the rolls. Then mix the remaining parmesan and shredded mozzarella cheese and sprinkle on top of all the rolls.

9. Cover the pan(s) with a piece of aluminum foil and place in the oven for 20 minutes or until the cheese is bubbling.

10. Finally, while the lasagna is cooking you can prepare the type of salad you plan to serve with the meal. Once everything is done, serve appropriate portions and enjoy.

 

Leftover Meal Idea: Muffin Melts

If you are unfortunately left without any leftover lasagna rolls but still have some of the meat sauce mixture, here’s a chance to make some delicious muffin melts. These taste very similar to Subway meatball sandwiches if you prepare the sauce with meat as described above. All you will need to purchase extra is some whole wheat English muffins, If you don’t want to use those, or just want to use what you have on hand, you can always opt for a tortilla, pita bread, toast, or even a large piece of lettuce to use as a wrap. Simply spread the desired meat sauce mixture onto one side of the bread, sprinkle some shredded cheese and parmesan cheese on top, and cover with the other piece of bread. Wrap in a piece of aluminum foil until ready to be taken out and re-heated for a tasty lunch.

Chicken Skinny Noodle Soup

Chicken Skinny Noodle Soup

This chicken noodle soup uses Lipton Soup Secrets. I know that Lipton makes one with bits of chicken, but why use that if you can add your juicy meat and vegetables? I usually use the product called Noodle Soup with Real Chicken Broth, but if you’d like, you can try the one with extra noodles. These Soup Secrets come in boxes, with two envelopes per box. When you open a container, the noodles look like tiny bits of shredded paper in yellow powder. The noodles will expand, but even when thoroughly cooked, they’ll be thinner than angel hair pasta. That’s why I’m calling it chicken and skinny noodle soup. The following recipe makes enough for two people or one starving one. If desired, you can double up on the recipe, using both of the envelopes in the box.

I love watching this soup come together almost as much as I like eating it. So I’m going to talk about cooking it as if it’s a story. For the short version of the recipe, skip down to the ingredients list and the no-nonsense directions at the bottom.

Cook the chicken: Crush two cloves of garlic. If the celery stalk has any leaves, cut them off. Put the garlic, celery leaves, and a chicken thigh into a pot. Cover with water. Bring to a boil and let bubble away for 20 minutes. If you are lucky, you might be able to see golden drops floating away in the water. What are those things? Fat? Oil? Whatever they are, they look delicious.

Prep the vegetables: This can be done while the chicken is cooking. To dice the celery, cut a single stalk into four pieces lengthwise. That means to cut it in half, then cut those two pieces also in half. Gather the four lengths together and slice through all four at the same time, moving down the stalk and continue slicing until you have diced through it all. Now for the carrot. This is just my crazy way of cutting it into approximately equal pieces. Starting with the narrow end, slice the carrot into coin-shaped pieces until you get halfway through. Cut the remaining carrot in half lengthwise, then continue slicing through, making half-moon shaped pieces. Peel and dice a potato if desired. Adding a potato is optional; they make the soup more filling.

Cook the vegetables: Take the chicken out of the pot and set aside to cool. Discard the garlic and celery leaves. Add the diced celery, carrot, and potato to the pan and let simmer for 15-20 minutes.

Cook the noodles: Add the envelope of Lipton Soup Secrets to the pot. Break up any clumps. The noodles will swirl around vigorously in the water — Cook for about five minutes.

Finish: While the noodles are cooking, you can shred or cut up the chicken into bite-size pieces. Five minutes after the noodles go in, you can add the petite peas if desired. Though initially frozen, they give a pop of freshness when you later chow down on them. Add the cooked chicken and turn off the heat after it all heats through.

Ingredients

  • One chicken thigh
  • Two garlic cloves, crushed
  • One celery stalk, including the leafy part if possible
  • One carrot, peeled
  • 4 cups of water
  • One envelope Lipton Soup Secrets Noodle Soup with Real Chicken Broth
  • One potato, peeled and diced (optional)
  • 1/4 cup frozen petite peas (optional)

Directions

1. Cut off the top part of the celery. Put the celery leaves, garlic cloves, chicken thigh, and water in a pot. Heat to boiling and let it cook until the chicken is done about 20 minutes.

2. While the chicken is cooking, dice the celery, carrot, and potato if using. Remove the cooked chicken and set aside to cool. Discard the garlic and celery leaves. Add the diced vegetables to the pot and let simmer 15-20 minutes.

3. Add the envelope of Lipton Soup Secrets and let the noodles cook for 5 minutes. In the meantime, dice the chicken. Add the petite peas and diced chicken to the soup, and heat through for just a few minutes.

This chicken noodle soup uses Lipton Soup Secrets. I know that Lipton makes one with bits of chicken, but why use that if you can add your juicy meat and vegetables? I usually use the product called Noodle Soup with Real Chicken Broth, but if you’d like, you can try the one with extra noodles. These Soup Secrets come in boxes, with two envelopes per box. When you open a container, the noodles look like tiny bits of shredded paper in yellow powder. The noodles will expand, but even when thoroughly cooked, they’ll be thinner than angel hair pasta. That’s why I’m calling it chicken and skinny noodle soup. The following recipe makes enough for two people or one starving one. If desired, you can double up on the recipe, using both of the envelopes in the box.

I love watching this soup come together almost as much as I like eating it. So I’m going to talk about cooking it as if it’s a story. For the short version of the recipe, skip down to the ingredients list and the no-nonsense directions at the bottom.

Cook the chicken: Crush two cloves of garlic. If the celery stalk has any leaves, cut them off. Put the garlic, celery leaves, and a chicken thigh into a pot. Cover with water. Bring to a boil and let bubble away for 20 minutes. If you are lucky, you might be able to see golden drops floating away in the water. What are those things? Fat? Oil? Whatever they are, they look delicious.

Prep the vegetables: This can be done while the chicken is cooking. To dice the celery, cut a single stalk into four pieces lengthwise. That means to cut it in half, then cut those two pieces also in half. Gather the four lengths together and slice through all four at the same time, moving down the stalk and continue slicing until you have diced through it all. Now for the carrot. This is just my crazy way of cutting it into approximately equal pieces. Starting with the narrow end, slice the carrot into coin-shaped pieces until you get halfway through. Cut the remaining carrot in half lengthwise, then continue slicing through, making half-moon shaped pieces. Peel and dice a potato if desired. Adding a potato is optional; they make the soup more filling.

Cook the vegetables: Take the chicken out of the pot and set aside to cool. Discard the garlic and celery leaves. Add the diced celery, carrot, and potato to the pan and let simmer for 15-20 minutes.

Cook the noodles: Add the envelope of Lipton Soup Secrets to the pot. Break up any clumps. The noodles will swirl around vigorously in the water — Cook for about five minutes.

Finish: While the noodles are cooking, you can shred or cut up the chicken into bite-size pieces. Five minutes after the noodles go in, you can add the petite peas if desired. Though initially frozen, they give a pop of freshness when you later chow down on them. Add the cooked chicken and turn off the heat after it all heats through.

Ingredients

  • One chicken thigh
  • Two garlic cloves, crushed
  • One celery stalk, including the leafy part if possible
  • One carrot, peeled
  • 4 cups of water
  • One envelope Lipton Soup Secrets Noodle Soup with Real Chicken Broth
  • One potato, peeled and diced (optional)
  • 1/4 cup frozen petite peas (optional)

Directions

1. Cut off the top part of the celery. Put the celery leaves, garlic cloves, chicken thigh, and water in a pot. Heat to boiling and let it cook until the chicken is done about 20 minutes.

2. While the chicken is cooking, dice the celery, carrot, and potato if using. Remove the cooked chicken and set aside to cool. Discard the garlic and celery leaves. Add the diced vegetables to the pot and let simmer 15-20 minutes.

3. Add the envelope of Lipton Soup Secrets and let the noodles cook for 5 minutes. In the meantime, dice the chicken. Add the petite peas and diced chicken to the soup, and heat through for just a few minutes.

Mesothelioma and Good Nutrition

boost the immune system

Everyone knows and acknowledges that the critical component to maintaining a healthy lifestyle is to incorporate good nutrition into your diet, particularly if you have mesothelioma cancer or some other health-compromising disease. Individuals who have mesothelioma can greatly benefit from consuming a nutritionally rich diet, which will undoubtedly fluctuate as they go through their treatment protocol and will require a great variety of nourishing and wholesome foods.
Consuming a health-conscious diet that consists of all the necessary nutrients the human body needs can be an overwhelming challenge in general. However, people who suffer from mesothelioma and other types of cancer may find it even more challenging to adhere to a healthy diet plan. Eating a well-balanced diet is especially important for people with mesothelioma also though they struggle with nausea and appetite loss since nutritional foods help sustain energy, boost the immune system and ward off free radicals that may trigger cancer. Additionally, proper nutrition is vital to diminishing the detrimental side effects that some mesothelioma treatments can incur.
Mesothelioma victims cope with various nutritional requirements since cancer treatments may produce side effects that are relative to nutrition. For instance, a patient who receives chemotherapy or radiation therapy can experience difficulty regularly eating since these types of treatments are recognized as producers of intense nausea. Also, post-surgery patients are generally weak and therefore have a hard time eating proper foods. Other cancer treatment side effects that could sabotage an ideal nutrition plan are overall pain, vomiting, diarrhea, constipation, difficulty swallowing, anorexia, bulimia, anxiety, depression, and mouth sores.
It is crucial to maintain a nutritional diet before, during, and after cancer treatments since undernourishment can cause weakness, exhaustion, and leave a patient vulnerable to infection. Frequent dietary issues many cancer patients face are not consuming enough calories and protein, which are critical to promoting healing, stave off disease, and maintain energy levels. A well-balanced and healthy diet can result in a better outcome for the patient.
Here are a few nutritional suggestions for fighting mesothelioma and staying healthy while enduring cancer treatment protocol.
– Keep your body thoroughly hydrated to expel harmful toxins that accompany certain cancer treatments
– Discuss an optimal diet plan with your dietician that is personalized to meet your needs specifically

– Consider a low-carb diet while integrating high amounts of healthy protein-rich foods which help restore impaired tissues due to surgery or other various mesothelioma therapies as well as boost the immune system.

– If you are experiencing difficulty swallowing or nausea, consume softer types of foods or vitamin-rich liquids. Create healthy fruit smoothies or consume ready-made liquid diet supplements if solid foods are intolerable to you
– Incorporate healthy fats into your diet to maintain energy levels and avert depression
– Avoid extreme weight loss by eating high-calorie foods, which include real cheeses, milk, and butter if you are experiencing a loss of appetite
– Consult with your doctor or medical practitioner to be sure you are getting an ample supply of the essential nutrients your body requires

What Makes Organic Honey Better for You

Organic HoneyWhat Makes Organic Honey Better for You

Honey is nature’s wonder. And health-conscious people around the world are turning their attention towards India, due to its Organic Honey. It comes from different parts of India, including the hilly areas of Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Araku Valley in Andhra Pradesh and others. The famous Kashmir Honey is one of the bestselling varieties and is from the beautiful and mesmerizing landscapes of Kashmir. The Honey collected from rain-fed slopes of Araku Valley acts as an excellent digestive and antioxidant due to the presence of a large variety of medicinal plants in the valley.

So, let us see the different varieties of Honey available in India and which one you should choose:

Commercial Honey

Commercial Honey is a processed version. Though you won’t notice the word ‘pasteurized’ anywhere on the container, isn’t it evident that commercial products are all processed? Instead, the name you see in the description is ‘Pure.’ But the reality is very far from it, as there are no set of manufacturing standards that define ‘pure’ on a label. And such commercially manufactured Honey may contain fillers such as corn syrup, artificial sweeteners, etc.

It is manufactured and processed to remove all the bits and pieces like pollen, propolis, comb, etc. that come along with Honey during collection. It is heated to get a cleaner final product and filtered for a smooth texture, in such a way that it doesn’t crystallize unless allowed to freeze in a refrigerator. It is heated at a high temperature to achieve this and, in the process, kills all the bacterial enzymes. Though it is not an optimal variety, it is better than refined sugar. If raw or Organic Honey is not available, commercial Honey from stores is the next best form.

Raw Honey

Raw Honey is collected and distributed by trusted local beekeepers. It acts as an excellent immunity source against seasonal allergies. With just a visit to your beekeeper’s unit, you can assess the quality of the Honey. It is usually 100% pure and unadulterated. It will be available in 3 forms:

  • Completely Raw Honey – It will be crystallized and crunchy when you buy it. It may contain bits of pollen, wax, and other remnants.
  • Unfiltered Raw (or Strained) – It will crystallize more quickly than the other types. It is strained to free the Honey from large chunks of combs etc.
  • Filtered raw Honey – It is slightly heated and filtered. It is clean without any bits of pollen etc. It doesn’t have all the other health benefits of a completely raw Honey, but it is considered better than pasteurized variety. Though the raw Honey is claimed to be unprocessed, there are no strict legal requirements labeling Honey as “raw.” Though they are unprocessed, they are slightly warmed to retard granulation for a short time and allow light straining and packing into containers for sale. Therefore, it isn’t straightforward to identify the amount of real Honey in 100%, pure Honey.

Organic Honey

The variety of Honey with the best flavor, aroma, and health benefits is Organic Honey. Organic Honey manufacturers meet the standards set by the local natural agriculture board in terms of bee foraging areas, source of nectar, bee management, extraction, transportation, and packaging materials. 

For Honey to be organic, the beekeepers have to follow the below standards of cultivation:

  • The farms surrounding the beekeeping areas about 5 kilometers are organic. Meaning these farms are cultivated only through natural ways and with the use of natural fertilizers.
  • There are no additives added at any point in time (sugar, sweeteners, non-compliant Honey, etc.).
  • Mostly, the beehives are maintained in isolated areas far from pollution and high traffic areas and cultivated under a safe, pesticide-free environment.
  • During starvation, bees must be fed organic supplements only like Honey, sugar, fruit concentrate, etc. This kind of farming demands rigorous methods and regular sample tests, which ensure that the process is consistently organic.

Organic Honey is a healthier choice and has a superior taste when compared to other varieties.

Want That Salad with a Side of Sugar?

stored in an airtight container

In this day and age, we are bombarded with hidden sugars. They are quite literally lurking everywhere. They are in our cereals, bread, yogurts, tomato sauces, and even in our salad dressings. Seriously? Did you intend to order that salad with a side of insulin-spiking Italian or the candy bar equivalent, Honey Dijon? While reading the label of one fairly popular Dressing, I noted the second, third, and fourth ingredients were high fructose corn syrup, honey, and sugar. Why not just call it what it is? It’s sugar, sugar, and still more sugar!

So, why are the big brands doing this? It is quite simple. Sugar is addictive, especially when mixed with the perfect ratio of dietary fats. That is what salad dressing is supposed to be, right? Many of the big food corporations have entire research teams dedicated to finding the perfect ratio of sugar and fats to ensure you keep coming back for more… and more… and more.

The reality is, you can spend hours analyzing labels and searching for terms like grape sugar, high-fructose corn syrup, honey, malt syrup, maltodextrin, maltose, mannitol, molasses, raw sugar, sorbitol, sorghum syrup, sucrose, turbinado sugar, or xylitol (to name a few) or you can make your own.

Here are three of my personal favorites…

Balsamic Vinaigrette (2T serving)- This is perfect for when you’re in the mood for something a little bit sweet and a little bit tart. It pairs beautifully with bright green baby spinach, toasted almonds, and freshly sliced strawberries.

1c Balsamic Vinegar

1c Extra Virgin Olive Oil

¼ c Fresh Lemon Juice

3T Dijon Mustard

1T Ground Thyme

2 tsp Pepper

Add the ingredients into a bowl. Whisk until they are thoroughly blended. Serve immediately and refrigerate all leftovers. If stored in an airtight container, then the leftovers should remain fresh for 1-2 weeks.

Lemon-Dijon Dressing (1T serving)- This is the perfect way to add a little bit of tang into your meal. Consider tossing it with mixed greens, tomatoes, and sliced cucumbers.

¾ c Water

9T Dijon Mustard

6T Fresh Lemon Juice

3T Extra Virgin Olive Oil

¾ tsp Pepper

6 Garlic Cloves, Minced

Add the ingredients into a bowl. Whisk until they are thoroughly blended. Serve immediately and refrigerate all leftovers. If stored in an airtight container, then the leftovers should remain fresh for 1-2 weeks.

Tahini Dressing (1T serving)- This is a go-to recipe for when you’re craving something creamy and a bit heavier. When massaged thoroughly, it hangs on every kale leaf as though they were meant to be lifetime partners.

¾ c Tahini

1 Garlic Clove, Minced

1T Low Sodium, Tamari

¼ tsp Onion Powder

2T Lemon Juice

¼ c Water, add until it reaches the desired consistency

Add the ingredients into a bowl. Whisk until thoroughly blended. Allow sitting for at least 20 minutes to marry the flavors. Serve and refrigerate all leftovers. If stored in an airtight container, then the leftovers should remain fresh for 1-2 weeks.

 

Tips for Adding Herbs and Seasoning to Pasta for a Healthy Snack

Pasta can be a healthy inclusion in a balanced diet. The pasta itself will not contribute to an unhealthy meal, but the sauces we choose to make can if we do not make good choices. Sauces that are heavy with thick cream are not suitable for those individuals on low-fat diets. Consider using healthier olive oils and mixing it up with different flavors and spice blends for a tantalizing taste of flavors from around the world.
I personally only eat gluten-free pasta, and I try to limit this to once a week. I do not follow a low-fat diet as I believe good fats are beneficial in assisting with weight loss and maintaining a healthy body. So when I cook pasta as a main meal, I then use the leftovers for snacks (when there are any leftovers!)
I like to try out different flavored olive oils as a smooth sauce for my pasta. For example, you could try these three flavors:
1. Thai Inspired Olive Oil – Thai-inspired extra virgin olive oil with lemongrass, garlic, basil, lime, and chili.
2. Mediterranean Olive Oil – Mediterranean basil, garlic, pepper, thyme, and lemon in extra virgin olive oil.
3. Picante Mexican Olive Oil – Mexican-inspired extra virgin olive oil with garlic, chili, lime, basil, pepper, and thyme.
These oils alone will add fantastic flavor to plain pasta. Imagine what you could do with adding some herb and spices too. Dull, boring past no more!
I think that the combination of a herb and spice blend with flavored oil, some fresh seasonal vegetables, pasta, and the addition of chicken strips would be just heavenly and healthy too.
There are three blends I would recommend you find:
1. A Moroccan blend – works beautifully with cooked lentils, chickpeas, or fresh vegetables.
2. A Mediterranean blend – when mixed with risotto rice and chicken or to flavor proteins, couscous, and vegetables, it is just fantastic.
3. A Tunisian style blend – a medium-hot blend with nuts, inspired by harissa to mix with lentils, chickpeas, and vegetables.
There are many combinations of oils, herb, spices, and ingredients you can use to add variety to your meals and include healthy pasta options.
Take your tastebuds on an international taste travel sensation!
Check the products you use contain no added MSG, preservatives, or gluten for a healthier you. A great inclusion for any pantry wanting to sample foods as flavored from all over the world.

Healthy Meal with Healthy Leftovers

healthy meal

Healthy Meal of the Week: Tom’s Beef Stew

Leftover Idea: Stew Quesadillas

This idea was provided by my dad (Tom), who occasionally enjoys making this recipe for our family. I’ve always loved this healthy meal growing up and finally asked him for his specific recipe. My father graciously parted with his concoction, and last night, I put it to the test to see if what he wrote down came out tasting like the usual. Thankfully it did!

Even though this healthy meal takes a total of 6 hours to cook, in all actuality, the majority of the work is all taken care of by the crockpot. Your initial prep time will only be about 20 minutes to cook the meat, slice up the potatoes and carrots, along with opening the various cans to pour into the cooking container. Once that is done, and you turn on your crockpot, you can relax and occasionally stir if you desire.

Equipment Needed

– crockpot for stew

– skillet for cooking beef chunks

– ladle

Cooking Time

– 20 mins prep

– 6 hours cooking

Ingredients

(6 servings)

– 1 package beef stewing meat

– 1 can ranch style beans

– 1 can kernel corn

– 4 cans beef broth (14oz. each)

– 2 cubes beef bouillon

– 3 carrots

– 4-5 small red potatoes

– 1 tablespoon minced onion

– 1/2 tablespoon garlic powder

– 1/4 tablespoon seasoned salt

For Leftover Stew Quesadillas:

– shredded nonfat mozzarella cheese

– corn tortillas

– spatula

Directions

1. Open up the package of beef stewing meat. If the chunks are unusually large (like mine were), you can slice the pieces up on a cutting board, so you get smaller bite-sized chunks instead of large boulder type meat chunks. This is what I did since I didn’t want to have stew with pieces of meat that took up my entire spoon. I like the medley of flavors when there is a bit of everything on most spoonfuls.

2. Place pieces of stewing meat in a skillet on medium temperature and cook until there is no pink left. Be sure to flip each piece so that all sides cook thoroughly.

3. Open up the cans of beans, corn, and beef broth and pour all into the crockpot.

4. Slice up the carrots and potatoes into small bite-sized pieces and add them to the crockpot.

5. Add the minced onion, seasoned salt, garlic powder, and beef bouillon cubes and carefully stir the mixture.

6. When the meat is finished cooking to your liking, add the chunks directly into the crockpot mixture.

7. Turn crockpot to high, set your kitchen timer to 6 hours, ensuring that nothing is touching or near the crockpot. Place lid on the container, and you are all set. You can stir the mixture once an hour if you’d like.

8. When time is up, use your spoon to carefully (contents will be boiling) serve bowls of Tom’s Beef Stew and enjoy.

Leftover Healthy Meal Idea:

One of the most apparent options you have for leftovers is to ladle a few scoops of stew into a plastic travel container to enjoy for lunch the following day. Quick, easy, and convenient. However, if you’d like to put a simple twist on these leftovers, you can elect to make a stew quesadilla.

All you have to do is strain the liquid from the contents as best as possible. You can use a colander to make this process simple, just like you would do for pasta. Or put the stew in a bowl and using the side of the ladle, tilt the bowl sideways to pour out broth leaving the stew items in the bowl. You can now easily scoop out a few spoonfuls of stew (without juice) and put on a dry plate. Cut up the stems very fine so that they will fit in the quesadilla well.

Place one tortilla on a skillet (low/medium heat), place a layer of shredded cheese, then add all the stew items. Top with a bit more cheese and cover with another tortilla. Allow cooling a few minutes on each side, flipping with a spatula. When both sides are slightly brown, your stew quesadilla is ready. Slice and store in a plastic travel container or piece of foil, and your lunch for the next day is all ready to go!

 

 

Pickles and Murabba

pickles

The tradition of preserving fruits and vegetables in the form of pickles, jams and murabbas has been popular in the South Asian countries like India and Pakistan. Not only are these products tasty, but many of them are also considered as healthy preparations. A large number of Asian spices and fine quality edible oils are used in preparing pickles that add to their taste.

Some of the most popular items in these categories include amla murabba, mango pickle, apple murabba, lemon pickles, chilly pickle and carrot pickle.

Many households in the North Indian states prepare these items at homes. In addition, there are many small-scale as well as brand manufacturers engaged in preparing these traditional products. The following sections discuss various popular categories of these food items.

Amla Murabba and Pickle

People suffering from stomach and digestive system disorders are recommended to have amla murabba, which is prepared from India gooseberry along with ingredients like citric acid and sugar. The product is a rich source of vitamin C and a number of minerals like zinc and copper. Pregnant women can be given the recipe because of its high nutrient values. The popular Indian treatment approach called Ayurveda recommends regular consumption of the murabba. The students can also consume the recipe to sharpen their minds and also to increase concentration.

The gooseberry also serves as a wonderful ingredient for amla pickles. Just like amla murabba, the pickle prepared from this Indian gooseberry is tasty and offers health benefits. Acidity and gas troubles are the issues that can be easily addressed with regular consumption of the recipe.

Mango Murabba and Pickle

Raw mangoes are extremely healthy, but it is not possible to consume them in the raw form. However, the murabbas and pickles prepared using raw mangoes are quite popular. The consumption of mango murabba maintains the value of hemoglobin and takes care of the issues like weakness and fatigue. Spices like fennels, saffron and fenugreek seeds are added to these preparations to enhance their nutritional worth as well as flavor.

Apple Murabba

Apples need no introduction as healthy fruits. Murabbas recipes prepared from apples are as popular as mango and amla murabba. It is admired as a healthy recipe for heart as it controls palpitations and relives mental stress and strain. This apple recipe is also considered for keeping the skin and hair healthy and also to postpone the signs of aging like wrinkles.

Mixed Vegetable Pickles

Apart from fruits, vegetables too are popular as ingredients for making pickles and murabbas. A popular example of tradition pickle recipes is the one prepared from vegetables like cauliflower, carrot, radish and turnip and spices like ginger, garlic and peppers. Needless to say, the nutrients of each of these items can be enjoyed in the recipes.

Lemon Pickles

The digestive benefits of amla murabba and pickles can also be enjoyed with lemon pickle. One impressive aspect of this recipe is that the tradition lemon pickle recipes are not prepared in oil, which adds to its health quotient.

The modern approach of making pickles and murabbas doesn’t produce as many health benefits as are available with traditional recipes. Fortunately, it is possible to obtain the traditional recipes from different parts of the world using the internet.

Water: The Ultimate Performance Ally

Water may be considered one of the world’s most fundamental nutrients for life. Therefore, a lack of water within the body is capable of negatively impacting nearly every activity that we try to perform. Since the perception of thirst is an inaccurate indicator of the need to consume water, dehydration has become a common ailment that often goes unnoticed until it’s too late.

If we investigate the research, dehydration has a profound effect on physical measures. Acute dehydration has been linked to conditions such as headaches, irritability, muscle cramps, and fatigue; while chronic dehydration can cause severe issues like weight gain, elevated cholesterol, autoimmune diseases, asthma, and allergies. Jet lag and repetitive stress injuries can also be minimized with hydration strategies by boosting circulation and depositing more oxygen-rich blood to the stressed tissues. As you can see, the consequences of dehydration are genuinely endless.

Athlete’s lives are predicated by rituals and routines, which give them a sense of control over chaotic environments. Dehydration then can cause a feeling of uneasiness for athletes because they can no longer control variables they rely on to succeed. Dehydration of as little as 1-2% of body weight can begin to influence strength, power, and fatigue rates negatively.

One of the most detrimental performance effects that an athlete can face due to dehydration is the lack of neuromuscular control infinite movements. If you look at a baseball pitcher, they are rewarded for control and accuracy. Strikeouts and home runs are the results of strict communication between the nervous system and the muscles they innervate. Dehydration results in decreased blood volume, which can lead to premature fatigue and ultimately result in this loss of control. In a study by Distefano et al., 2012, researchers found that when athletes were dehydrated, they displayed unwanted hip, knee, and ankle movements as well as poor landing techniques on jumping exercises. Dehydration not only compromises our success, but it also predisposes our body to increased injury potential.

The usual guidelines given to instructors and coaches are that a person should drink approximately two liters of water per day. Exercise and heat increase the demand for fluids. As the body works harder, more heat is created, which needs to be lost. Approximately 75% of the energy used in exercise produces heat, with the remaining 25% going to useful work. The heat loss occurs when we sweat and also when we exhale. Although it is common to think of dehydration in the context of heat and exercise, if the environment is arid, then the significant fluid loss can also occur through the skin and exhaled breath.

Success in any endeavor is predicated by having the optimal resources in the correct amounts. Therefore, achieving our optimal performance cannot be achieved without attaining adequate hydration levels. Health, wellness, longevity, hormone balance, and performance will all benefit from staying in-tune with your body hydration needs.

Why Getting Rid of Toxins in Your Body is So Important

detoxification program

If you are in excellent health, your body will do a relatively good job of getting rid of any toxins that you may have encountered. For many people, however, toxins can be a severe problem. That’s why detoxification is essential for almost everybody. Technically, detoxification means cleaning your blood, but it is frequently taken also to mean cleaning, nourishing, and resting your overall body. Many in the medical community do not recognize it, assuming that the various organs of your body clean your blood, and there is little you can do to make it more efficient. Nevertheless, the procedure is now becoming more and more accepted.

Who should detox? 

How do you know if you should detox? There are, indeed, many symptoms that tell you that your body has a buildup of toxins. Fatigue is one of the major ones, but feeling bloated, headaches, and feeling despondent are others. You have to be careful, though, and make sure the symptoms are not from another source. In general, however, almost everyone can benefit from a detoxification program.

Most detoxifications last from one to two weeks, and they typically consist of several days of fasting, followed by a diet consisting mainly of raw vegetables and fruit. They may also emphasize colon flushing and various types of herbs or pills.

In considering a typical detoxification program diet or procedure (as I prefer to refer to it), it’s important to remember that the body detoxes itself quite efficiently, and all you can do is help. And you do this by keeping the organs that perform the detoxification programin top shape. The primary detoxifier is your liver, and there are many things you can do to keep it healthy. Other detox organs are your kidneys, intestines, lymph, lungs, and skin. All of them work together to flush your body of toxins.

What are the major toxins? They are poisons, pollutants, and various types of molecules and heavy metals that get into your body from the food you eat, the water you drink, and the air you breathe. Gases from cars, factories, and various types of machinery are common toxins. And it’s vital that you flush all of them out of your body as quickly as possible.

The program I am going to suggest consists of a short, concentrated, week or two, coupled with an extended program over the rest of the year. Of particular importance, any detox detoxification program should be coupled with an overall healthy lifestyle, and this is what I emphasize.

Major aim of the program

Any detoxification program should do several things. They include:

1. Strengthening and revitalizing the liver. The reason for this is that the liver is the major detoxifier in the body.

2. Strengthening other detox organs such as your kidneys, intestines, lymph glands, lungs, and skin.

3. Resting all the major organs of your body (including the above) by short- term fasting. This re-energizes them.

4. Improving the circulation of your blood. This is done mostly by exercise.

5. Refueling your body with healthy nutrients.

Program

The program I’m suggesting consists of the following twelve things, each of which helps eliminate toxins.

1. Eat as many superfoods as possible. Some of the better ones are: broccoli, carrots, tomatoes, blueberries, spinach, apples, oranges, strawberries, oats, beans. Also include foods high in Omega-3: salmon, tuna, nuts of seeds, avocado. Finally, delete bad saturated fats, and as much sugar and fried foods as possible from your diet.

2. An occasional fast is beneficial. A complete fast is not needed; you merely need to cut back to 500 calories per day. Two days a week is suggested, and it is usually easiest to do them on the weekends.

3. Eat plenty of fiber, particularly from broccoli, cabbage, beets, and whole grains. Take a fiber supplement if needed.

4. Drink plenty of water. It’s important to remember that two-thirds of your body is made up of water, and water plays a significant role in your body. Also, water flushes out toxins. So drink at least eight glasses a day.

5. Most experts say that the best thing you can do to detox is exercise. This creates sweat and toxins pass out of your body in your sweat. If possible, try to exercise an hour a day, six days a week.

6. Sufficient sleep is also critical. One of the primary reasons is that sleep recharges your liver. For most people, seven to eight hours is adequate.

7. Stress inhibits the release of toxins, so it is essential to reduce your stress. You can do this in several ways. The main thing you have to do is relax and let yourself go. Meditation is also helpful, as is mindfulness.

8. Avoid obvious toxins. Toxins are all around you. Some of the major ones are smog, poor air quality, second-hand smoke, and fumes from nearby factories. If you can smell the air, in most cases it is not suitable for you.

9. Breathe fresh air deeply. Clean out and refresh your lungs by taking several deep breaths. Hold it for a few seconds then release.

10. Hydrotherapy is beneficial. Soaking in a hot tub, or relaxing in a sauna helps you relax, and it also helps release toxins. If you don’t have access to them, a hot shower is helpful (many people like to finish it off with a cold shower).

11. Massage is also a right way for releasing toxins. Make sure, however, that it is from an expert masseur.

12. Get enough probiotics. It’s essential to get rid of any harmful bacteria in your gut, intestines, and so on. In the process, make sure you replace them with good bacteria. Two of the best sources of good bacteria are yogurt and kefir.

Summary

Your overall program should consist of the above in two forms: a short, one or two- week, program that is concentrated and intense, and a more extended (all year) program that still emphasizes the above steps. In particular, fasting, drinking plenty of water, avoiding stress, deep breathing, and hydrotherapy should be highlighted and adhered to rigidly during the shorter program. The shorter program should be performed every few months

 

Pregnancy Nutrition: 9 Food Groups That Will Have You Bursting With Energy

Have you lately felt that you don’t have the drive to indulge in things that you’ve enjoyed in the past? Of course, you are pregnant. While there’s not much physical evidence of it in the first trimester, one still has to realize that you are making that little person inside you. It is solid hard work. Probably the most challenging task that your body has done so far.

To keep powering the baby-making venture round the clock, remember that your body is producing more blood with increased heart rates. Even if you choose to rest, your body metabolism tends to go on an energy-burning overload. Additionally, with your body still in the process of forming the baby’s placenta, especially in the first nine weeks of pregnancy, it uses up more nutrients and water.

No wonder you feel tired and exhausted all the time! Do you find yourself thinking of opening the refrigerator and munching on that chocolate you’ve been saving, or maybe that Red Bull your partner has left behind? Think again. Pregnancy is a very delicate time for your body, and choosing a temporary quick fix with canned energy boosters is not ideal.

The sugar and caffeine combination makes your blood sugar go to a rapid rise and then on a severe dip, leaving you feeling more fatigued.

So, here’s a list of energy bursting food group that should be a part of your pregnancy diet:

1. Proteins: It is the most magnificent natural “lift-me-up,” primarily since the amino acids present in protein-rich foods assist in the growth of your baby’s reproducing cells.
· Eggs
· Beans or Lentils
· Nuts
· Chicken
· Milk, cheese and Yogurt (for those who can tolerate dairy)

2. Complex Carbohydrates: Lowers your cholesterol levels as well as keeps proving nourishment for your baby.
· Oatmeal, Whole grain bread, crackers, and low sugar cereal
· Fresh fruit
· Fresh veggies, Baked potato with skin

3. Calcium: Great at making the heart, nerves, muscles, teeth, and bones healthy.
· Yogurt and Milk
· Green beans
· Fish
· Almonds

4. Iron: If tiredness is the cause of keeping a relatively active pregnant woman indoors, then iron-deficiency anemia may be a probable cause, especially with the over demand of blood as the pregnancy progresses. Supplement your diet with iron-rich foods that will push up your energy levels.
· Spinach, Chickpeas, Broccoli, Beans
· Fortified cereal
· Pumpkin seeds
· Lean red meat
· Lentils
· Raisins and dried apricots
· Pasta
· Poultry


5. Vitamins: Ideal for protecting your immune system and helps you fight tiredness. Additionally, vitamins help to keep your baby healthy during the pregnancy period.
· Pumpkins, Carrots, Broccoli
· Oatmeal
· Mangoes


6. Potassium: Important with nerve impulses along with help in lessening leg cramps. Potassium is necessary as it controls your fluids and electrolyte balance in you and your baby’s cells.
· Bananas
· Pumpkin, Potatoes, Spinach, Leafy greens, Baked potato


7. Magnesium: Essential addition to your baby’s growth and assists in breaking down sugars into usable energy.
· Almonds, hazelnuts, cashews
· Bran cereal or whole grains
· Fish (avoid types with high levels of mercury)
· Soybean
· Bananas


8. Folate or Folic Acid: Gives strength and energy and helps in fetal development, the spine, and the brain.
· Lentils
· Spinach, Broccoli
· Mangoes
· Fortified cereal
· Eggs


9. Fiber: Best for those who are glucose intolerant. Supplement with tons of water.
· Whole grain bread, Oatmeal, Cereal
· Almonds
· Beans, Broccoli, Pumpkins
· Lentils
· Oranges, Bananas, Apples

Do keep in mind that eating healthy and getting that magic number in terms of calories will not just ensure your nutritional well-being but will also make sure of your baby’s nourishment and health.

How Chili Can Save Your Life

What most people seem to believe about chilli peppers is that they are spicy, mouth burning, flavor creators of passion! When you ask, most people say, “it’s just a little spicy red thing”.

It’s pretty obvious chilies are ultimate flavour enhancers. However, most people are unaware that these peppers have amazing, super powered health benefits!

It seems that not only are you able give your food a flavor hit, but it helps you with weight loss. So if you’re keen to “drop a few”, make sure to include chili peppers into your diet plan! This is a good way to boost your metabolism.

According to studies published in Cancer Research (2006), chillies can actually help lower the risk of prostate cancer. This is due to their ability to kill off cancer cells, while causing no harm to others. Another positive outcome is that as a treatment it shows that chili peppers also reduce the growth of cancer cells.

Diabetes. A word most unpleasant! However, have no fear the chilli pepper is here! Thanks to compounds within the pepper, they immensely lower your risk of developing diabetes. Wow that’s so amazing!

Looks like it’s time to man up and eat some more chili. According to random studies, chopped up chilies have the positive health benefits of increasing your immune system’s ability to function. How cool is that? Having some sinus problems? No problem! Get your chilli cayenne pepper out and mix it in with that chicken soup! Instant unblocked nose!

Ever heard of a little vitamin called “Vitamin C”? Of course you have! So has “Chilli”. Did you know that chilli peppers have more than double the amount of vitamin C than a tall glass of good old OJ? In addition, a good amount of vitamins A and B are also found within these little peppers!

A few simple ways to include these little miracle workers into your diet are, blending them into smoothies, having them soak in cooking oil to create chilli oil and to just eat them plain and simple! If you have trouble deciding which chilli is the right one for you. Don’t worry there are heaps to choose from. It’s said that green coloured chillies are not as hot as red and orange ones. Also be sure to keep your eye on the little ones. Yes, they sure are the most hot and furious of them all!

How to Live a Green Life in a Not So Green Household

How to Live a Green Life in a Not So Green Household

How to Live a Green Life in a Not So Green Household? – Living a green life also means reducing waste by reusing and recycling old materials as much as possible.Green living is fast becoming the way of life for many households. However, if you’re new to this type of living, jumping right into it can be quite a drastic change to deal with. There are ways to gradually introduce this type of living to others in your family; however, it will require creativity and a bit of patience on your end. Below are a few suggestions for living a green life and introducing it to your not so green family.

START SLOW

Imagine that for your entire life you are used to eating fast food and processed foods, however, in an instant all the foods you love are gone and you’re left with nothing but carrots, wheat bread, and other healthy foods. Chances are you would not take too kindly to the change and would long for what you used to eat. This is the same thing with green living. There is a lot involved in truly living a green life and if it is all introduced or forced at one time, those on the receiving end will not accept that well. Instead, it should be slowly introduced so that it becomes a part of their life gradually. Below are a few pointers on how to gradually start living a greener life.

CONSERVATION

Conserving energy is huge when opting to live a green life. You can begin with baby steps by simply turning off the lights when you’re not in the room, turning off electrical devices when not in use, and turning off water when washing your hands or dishes.

RECYCLING

Recycling is a very easy way to start living a greener life. Purchase recycling bins and make sure they are properly labeled so that everyone knows what goes in which container. Other ways to recycle include such as reusing grocery store backs to conserve plastic.

LIGHTING

A great first step is to install energy saving light bulbs in the house. While they cost a bit more to invest in, they tend to save a lot of money and give off way more light than traditional light bulbs.

Living Green When Your Family Won’t

There are times when green living is not something that everyone in your family is willing to do. While children ultimately have no choice, adult household members do and sometimes they buck at the idea. If this is the case you will need to learn how to live green

DRINKS

Instead of repeatedly purchasing coffee or water bottles you can conserve by making your own. Invest in a water filter pitcher and a reusable water bottle as well as a travel mug and a coffee maker. This is something easy for you to do on your own without forcing it on others.

There are other ways in which you can start living a green life even when your family won’t. Make your own cleaning supplies, turn off lights when you’re done, install efficient lighting in your room, and more. Don’t give up on your efforts to live a green life. Once you’ve gotten the hang of it, you’ll be glad you kept up.

Bourbon Chicken

Bourbon Chicken

Many home cooks are looking for a quick and easy recipe to prepare for their families instead of the same boring meals they serve every day. This is easily accomplished. There are many recipes out there that are not only fast and simple to prepare but is also possible to take one basic food concept and create numerous different meals.

One of these concepts is Bourbon Chicken, which takes its name from the famous street in New Orleans, Louisiana and the whiskey ingredient. This tasty dish is advertised as a Cajun style meal, however reportedly it is not genuine Cajun or creole style cuisine. Whether its origins are Cajun or not it is a delicious addition to any dinner table. Even though bourbon is in the name you don’t need the alcohol to create a flavorful version at home.

If you are a fan of Chinese food takeout this is the recipe for you:

Of course, you will need chicken, 2 pounds of skinless, boneless chicken breast tenders or if you prefer dark meat, boneless chicken thighs. Cut your choice of chicken into bite sized pieces, in a medium frying pan heat 2 tablespoons of oil (again whatever kind you prefer). While the oil is heating put the chicken into a bowl and toss with a handful or two of cornstarch until all the chicken is coated. Toss the coated chicken into the hot oil and cook until lightly brown.

Take the time your chicken is in the skillet to put together the sauce in a medium saucepan. Mix together a crushed clove of garlic, a quarter of a teaspoon of ginger, a quarter of a cup each of apple juice and light brown sugar, three quarters of a teaspoon of crushed red pepper flakes (if you like a little more heat raise this to one teaspoon), one tablespoon of cider vinegar, one half cup of water, two tablespoons of ketchup, one third cup of soy sauce and finally a pinch or two of cornstarch.

Make sure all these ingredients are well mixed, and then add the chicken. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat, cover and simmer for about 20 minutes. If the sauce isn’t thickening to your liking add another pinch of cornstarch and simmer for a few more minutes. Prepare your favorite rice and serve your Bourbon chicken on a bed of it. Feel free to add your choice of stir fry veggies in with the chicken as you are cooking it.

For those home cooks who just don’t have the time or energy to deal with all that chopping and crushing there are Bourbon chicken seasoning packets that take all the work out of the sauce. There are also fewer ingredients to deal with as well. To make this recipe just take the seasoning packet and mix with one cup of water, two tablespoons of soy sauce and one third cup of brown sugar in a medium sauce pot, bring to a boil.

After a good boil is going lower the heat to medium. Dice one pound of chicken breast strips into one to one half inch cubes and put (raw) into sauce. Cook for about eight minutes then lower the heat to simmer. Make sure to let the mixture cook for at least 20 minutes to ensure the chicken has been thoroughly cooked through. Serve over rice and you have a very quick and flavorful dish that tastes like you have slaved over a stove for hours.

This next recipe will appeal to cooks that like a recipe with minimal ingredients as well as those who enjoy the slightly more hands on approach to cooking. In this recipe which serves 4, you need to cut up three pounds of skinless, boneless chicken breast in a bowl. Combine a 14 ounce bottle of barbecue sauce, two tablespoons of bourbon, two tablespoons of Worcestershire sauce and two tablespoons of Dijon mustard in the bowl with the chicken. Cover the bowl and place in the refrigerator for two hours to overnight. When it’s time to start cooking preheat the oven to 350 degrees F, then pour the marinated chicken into a baking dish without a cover. Bake for one hour and 15 minutes, basting ever so often will keep your chicken moist and flavorful. Cooked rice or your favorite vegetables make great side dishes to this meal.

Unique Vegetable Soup

Unique Vegetable Soup

You are probably wondering about the perfect food that is quick and easy to prepare, has myriads of choices of ingredients, benefits you with better health, and is cost effective to make? Then, the answer to all your questions is vegetable soup.

Why is vegetable soup so important?

For starters, this soup is very easy to prepare. With just few easy steps, anyone can prepare it.

There are plenty of soup recipes available. You can try out different vegetables every time you prepare it.

Although for most recipes, the method of preparation remains the same, it may vary a little depending on the ingredients you choose.

You may not have adequate vegetables in your diet at the moment. For instance, most American diets have a lesser vegetable content. So, with vegetable soup, you can boost your vegetable intake to meet your five-a-day recommended portion.

Consuming this soup is advantageous to your health, as vegetables reduce the chances of heart disease, hypertension, Diabetes, it protects you against specific type of cancers, and, in general, it leads to an increase in the body’s resistance against many diseases and aliments through improving the body’s immune system.

If you are weight conscious, vegetable soup acts like a diet soup, which limits unwanted calories and fat build-up in your body unlike other foods. It can help you reduce and maintain the required weight.

If you are sick, vegetable soup acts like a healthy soup that improves your health by providing you with the necessary nutrients.

Here are some ingredients to prepare vegetable soup:

50 grams each of any two vegetables. They can be carrots, onions, potatoes, cauliflower, etc. They can be scraped and chopped depending on your choice.

200 grams of tomatoes.

20 grams of butter.

1 tablespoon of oats

2 teaspoons of ginger and garlic paste

50 milliliters of fresh skimmed milk

2 teaspoons of oil

1 tablespoon of flour (all purpose)

1 teaspoon of pepper powder

Salt as per your taste

1 – 2 green chilies

5 – 6 cups of water

5 – 6 neatly chopped Coriander leaves.

Method of preparation of vegetable soup:

You have to ignite or switch on your stove, and place a pan on it.

Put 5 – 10 grams of butter in the pan, and heat it. You have to let the butter span across the pan as it melts.

Put the ginger and garlic paste into the pan, and fry it for 2 – 3 minutes, stirring it so that it does not stick to the pan.

Put in the vegetables and tomatoes into the pan.

Put in 5 – 8 cups of water, and let it boil. Time is dependent on the flame intensity.

When you feel the vegetables are cooked, you can sprinkle some pepper powder upon it depending on your taste.

Now, you have to mix milk, flour, and oats in a jug, and then add the mixture to the pan.

Now, you can decrease the flame intensity to a simmer.

Fry oil with a mixture of the Coriander leaves and green chilies for about 1 – 2 minutes in another pan, and then transfer it to the vegetable soup pan. Take care to protect yourself from the oil if it spurts when you transfer it to the soup.

Simmer for 2 more minutes, and stir the contents well.

Now your vegetable soup is ready.