Electric Coffee Makers-Sheer Simplicity

Back in the day, you can probably remember your mom putting this ugly looking coffee pot on the stove and watching the coffee perk in the top of the lid. Nowadays, kids watch their moms or dads put coffee grinds into a filter, add some water and hit the button. Technology has come along way in the way we make coffee.

Imagine, before you go to bed in the evening, you fill the filter with you favorite tasting coffee, add some water to the bin, set the timer and go to bed. Who would have thought it could be that simple and quick to have a great tasting cup of coffee when you get up in the morning. Gone are the days of wanting and waiting.

The use of electricity to make your coffee instead of brewing it on the stove will give you the same results every time. The only thing that will change the taste of your coffee is if you add more or less grinds and the flavor that you choose. Back when you had to cook your coffee, you had to stand there and watch it to make sure that it didn’t get burnt.

There are many different varieties of electric coffee makers on the market today. Every brand has its own makes and models that you can choose from. If you are looking for just a plain little old electric coffee maker then you can get one that suits your needs.

Electric coffee makers come where it will brew just one cup at a time, 14 cups at a time or multiple pots can be made at once if you are using it for a restaurant business. This gives you the option of being able to choose your make and model depending on if you are a heavy coffee drinker or a light coffee drinker.

A single maker is perfect if you just need that quick cup on your way out the door to get to the office. One that can make up to 14 cups is great for those holiday dinners and family gatherings when the whole entire family wants coffee with their dessert.

You may want to do a little research before purchasing you coffee maker so that you are sure to get the right one to match your needs. Certain brands have a make and model that can actually grind your coffee beans for a fresher cup of brew. Most electric coffee makers today come with a clock and built in timer so that you can set it and forget it.

No matter which brand that you choose, the only thing you have to do is purchase it and bring it home and plug it in. You will find that making coffee has never been easier and by following the instructions, you will have the best tasting coffee that you have ever made in your home. So, hit the stores and start brewing today!

Coffee Makers-Features You Want

If you are shopping for your very first coffee maker or even if you are just tired of the old one and need something new, do your homework before heading to the department store. With all of the different brand name makers on the market there are tough decisions that need to be made before even steeping foot out the door.

Looking at your kitchen, where is your coffee maker going to sit? Do you have a small space on your countertop or do you have a much larger spot in mind? The answers to these questions can make or break a decision on the perfect coffee maker for your home.

The price range can go from a small amount of $20 and ranges up into the thousands, depending on what your needs are. Maybe you just need something simple to have the once in awhile cup of coffee. Maybe you need one that is a little bigger in case you have dinner parties or just a lot of coffee drinkers in your home. The average appliance usually makes around 10 to 14 cups but you can purchase one that will make one cup at a time.

You may also want to look for a maker that has a built in timer. These are great so that when you get up in the morning and you are rushing around to go to work, your coffee will already be brewed for you. It is just a simple step of measuring out the coffee and placing it in the filter, filling up the water chamber, setting the timer and forget about it.

Depending on the features that you want your coffee maker to have can also affect the price. Ones with the automatic timer or a permanent basket may cost a little more than just an average one that you have to turn on and off every time you make a pot of coffee.

The style also plays a role in this. If you want a stainless steel maker than you could be paying a pretty penny but if you want just a plain old every day maker than the cost could be a lot less. You also have to take into consideration the fact that some coffee makers come with an espresso machine built in or even a cappuccino maker. This adds some diversity to your coffee making abilities.

You just have to remember that when shopping for a coffee maker it is almost like buying a car. You want something that is going to look nice, feel right and take you for a good ride. Getting up in the morning and being able to drink a great tasting cup of coffee can make your day take off to a great start. If you end up drinking something that tastes like mud than your day could just putter along at a crawl and seem like you are stuck in rush hour traffic. Be a little picky and be a little choosey.

Coffee Makers-A Look At Different Styles

Choosing the right style of coffee maker for yourself or your place of business can sometimes be a little tricky. You have to decide if you are a cup a day person, espresso, cappuccino or you may like to throw dinner parties and need something that is a little bigger.

When purchasing an automatic drip coffee maker, you are given a variety of choices such as color, size and believe it not, even shape. You can get one that has a paper filter that needs to be replaced every time you make a pot of coffee or you can choose one that has a permanent filter that just needs to be cleaned after each use and only replace every few months.

The automatic coffee drip maker is the most popular coffee maker in today’s household. They are generally small and cost effective. There are several different models of this type to choose from such and fully automatic and semi-automatic. It’s almost like going out and purchasing your new ride. Some of them have built in coffee grinders and some don’t.

You can even purchase one of these models that have a timer so that you can set it and forget at night and wake up to the wonderful smell of fresh brewed coffee. That’s a way to get your morning started.

There is also the percolator style that is generally used on the stove. Some people feel that a good cup of coffee only comes from being cooked so to speak. You can get this style in an electric maker but, the general vote seems to be on the stove. Since this type of maker does not have a warming plate to rest upon as the automatic coffee maker does, you will need to pour the coffee into some type of carafe that is made to keep liquids hot.

With the percolator coffee maker, the water is actually boiled to cook the coffee. This can weaken the coffee and give it a burnt taste. When using something a little more modern such as the automatic coffee drip maker, it heats the water slowly as it brews the coffee so that you get a more even taste without the bitterness.

There are other types of coffee makers that you can choose from such as a vacuum coffee maker and it is rather large. You may feel that you are at a science lab creating something magical with your coffee using this type of equipment.

No matter what your choice of coffee maker may be, it has to fit right in your lifestyle and not be complicated. Nowadays we are looking for quick, convenient and universal. We want a product that is going to give us the most bang for our buck so to speak.

Make sure that you do your research before jumping in the car and running to your favorite department store. Instead, jump on the computer first or look through some magazines to see what your options are.

Automatic Drip Coffee Maker-One Of My Favorite Inventions

More people drink coffee today than ever before. You can get your coffee in tea bag form, bean form and even already ground. The automatic drip coffee maker is one of the most popular forms of coffee maker today.

One of the greatest things about an automatic drip coffee maker is that most makers and models come with a timer. In today’s society of hurry, hurry rush rush, being able to get up in the morning and already having your coffee made is a great asset to most hard working people.

You may also have a preference if you want to use a paper filter or a metal filter. With a paper filter, you need to replace the filter every time that you make a pot of coffee. If you choose to purchase a permanent filter, even though you need to wash it in between uses, you only need to replace the filter ever so often. This is a great cost effective savings with the ever rising cost of everything that we need.

There are many different name brands that you can choose from as well as the make and model of each brand. You can choose from Mr. Coffee, Braun, Proctor-Silex, Cuisinart and Black and Decker just to name a few. Each company has their own special design with their own bells and whistles to make each one unique.

People often have a lot of questions when it is their first time purchasing an automatic coffee drip maker. It is best when filling the water reservoir with cold water. Since the coffee maker will heat the water as it is brewing, if the water is too hot than it can cause your coffee to have a burnt taste.

You also have to keep in mind that your coffee can make the difference in taste as well. It needs to stay fresh in a seal tight canister or kept in the refrigerator. This will keep the coffee beans fresh whether they are already ground or in bean form.

Many people like to ground their coffee as they use it for a fresher taste. Some automatic coffee drip makers are made to make just one cup at a time and others can brew anywhere from 4 and up. If you don’t drink a lot of coffee then a smaller one would be the right choice for you.

If you tend to have dinner parties or even like to drink a few cups while you are reading the morning paper than getting one that can actually brew more than a cup at a time would be more beneficial.

Your choice of automatic drip coffee maker should be based on your lifestyle and on how much coffee you drink. You can even purchase one that has an espresso maker. Whatever your choice, make sure that you keep your machine clean and debris free. This way you are guaranteed for your coffee to be fresh to the last drop.

Are Raw Foods Just A New Fad Or Here To Stay?

When most people think of raw foods they think of uncooked meat, fish and poultry. What is really meant by a raw food is fruit, vegetables and nuts. It used to be at one time that we were told eating raw meat or at least as close to raw as possible was a good thing.

With all of the research that has been done over the years, it has been found that raw meats are not as healthy for you as once thought. They can cause heart conditions, cholesterol issues and are just all around bad for your health. This is why when we talk about raw foods we are talking about food that you don’t have to cook.

Cooking your food takes all of the nutrients out of what you are eating. We are trying to eat the healthy way in today’s society. Try eating some celery, of course you want to wash it first, or how about an apple. Fruits and veggies are great when they are raw. Take broccoli and cauliflower for example. With some dip or by themselves, they make a great addition to your meal or even just as a snack during a movie.

Getting the young generation to start eating raw foods when their tastebud’s are forming is a great way to promote healthy eating habits for adulthood. We all know how hard it can be trying to change your habits. Eating habits are no different than work habits. Everything starts from when we are growing up.

It is also financially beneficial since you are not only spending less but your pocket will thank you when the gas and electric bill arrives. This means less time in the kitchen cooking and preparing food. You will be able to wash, slice and dice and in some cases, just pour out of a bag and eat. Maybe add a little dip depending if it is a fruit or veggie.

One idea is to slice an apple and add some peanut butter. Not only are you getting the nutrients that you need but the combination of the peanut butter with the apple is a great filler and wonderful for those of us that are dieting. Many people are doing what they call a raw food diet. They have no cooking and very little prep time needed in the kitchen.

Your health should be the main concern for you to consider a raw food diet. The nutritional benefits are beyond compare from the usual fare of chicken, steak and hamburger. Not to say that we don’t need healthy fat in our diet in order to have a balanced body.

You do need the correct amount of healthy fats in order to make your body work properly. There is no need to be a vegetarian, just cut back on the amount of fatty foods that you consume and make sure they are cooked properly. Remember, a happy heart is a healthy heart.

Cuisinart Ice Cream Maker Sorbet

There are three main types of frozen desserts that you can make easily in your own homes. They include ice cream, yogurt, and sorbet. Sorbet is usually made completely with fruit and can be hard to find in a variety of flavors. It is also something that some people consider better for their children – but most don’t care for it.

So why not make a healthy and delicious batch of sorbet that you and your children are going to love. The Cuisinart ice cream maker sorbet is one of the best sorbet makers on the market. The best part about it is that it is a combination Cuisinart Ice Cream Maker Sorbet machine that will make both sorbet and frozen yogurt Australia.

This will save you money from buying the Cuisinart frozen yogurt ice cream maker. It has been designed using two bowls that gives you the option of making two different flavors at the exact same time. There are more controls and different settings for each bowl. These bowls are both double insulated freezer bowls that can each hold up to 1 quart.

In order to allow you to pour in your ingredients without making a mess the Cuisinart ice cream maker sorbet has been built with an automatic mixing arm and spout. Each batch that you make will take 20 to 30 minutes. There are two main types of Cuisinart ice cream maker sorbet machines.

There is the basic model that has been given a simple design and less features. The other type of the stainless sorbet machine that is more professional looking and would look great in any kitchen. This type of sorbet maker has more features. Depending on the type that you buy it will cost between $90 to $150.

Victor Arguinzoniz – The Chef Behind Asador Etxebarri

When you hear about restaurants that have gotten into the S. Pellegrino list, you would automatically think of fine-dining and extravagant surroundings. What would not enter your mind is barbecue. Let us admit it, when we hear barbecue, we imagine comfort food, picnics, parties, backyard get-togethers, the beach, but never fine dining. However, this is exactly what Chef Victor Arguinzoniz did. He catapulted grilled cuisine and barbecues to the top of the S. Pellegrino list.

Last year, his restaurant Asador Etxebarri enjoyed the 39th position in the S. Pellegrino list. His showed that grilled food can compete with French cuisine and molecular gastronomy, and proof of his culinary skill was his restaurant getting into the list. However, this year saw then drop down a few spots to the 61st position. This does not mean though that the quality of his cuisine decreased. Who knows, the year 2011 might see him at the top 50 of the S. Pellegrino list once again.

Chef Arguinzoniz credits his skill in grilling food to his childhood years. Having grown up in a farmhouse that has no electricity, he learned how to build a fire using different types of wood, some of which give off a very unique aroma that emphasizes the flavors of the food. Whenever he would spend some time with his friends, he would always make them some of his famous grilled steak.

In 1989, he purchased an old building that used to be a restaurant. He wanted to start his own restaurant business as well as maintain the integrity of the building, especially since the building has been a huge part of their community. Of course, he did what he loved most to do, which is grilling. He was not satisfied with traditional grilled dishes, so he started inventing his own grilling equipment to grill unusual ingredients, one of which is Angulas.

His grilling skill began attracting customers from all over the place that, in time, his restaurant started catering to fine-dining diners. His restaurant also began attracting critics that, pretty soon, he and his restaurant were receiving not only praises but awards and recognitions as well. Because of his culinary talent in grilling ordinary and unusual food, he has been dubbed as “The Ferran Adria of the Heart.”

Chef Arguinzoniz is the type of chef who wants to stay behind the stove and hearth. He is not one who loves being in the spotlight, especially when it comes to media. However, his Asador Etxebarri is not the only thing that keeps him busy as he still strives to perfect his grilling techniques.

He still continues to learn more about the different types of woods and how he can use them for his cooking, and he still continues to experiment with heat as he adjust his grills over the fire to perfect the way he cooks the food. He studies what type of wood works best with what type of food, and through this, he creates new dishes that never fails to astound his diners. Who else but Chef Arguinzoniz would even think of a smoked vanilla ice milk with an infusion of berries.

Through his exemplary and innovative grilling techniques, his restaurant draws food gourmands from all over the world that it has become a part of one’s tour if you happen to be in Spain. Aside from this, his restaurant also draws culinary students from all over the globe who wanted to learn more about his grilling techniques. In fact, one of his protégées, Lennox Hastie of Australia, came to Spain to study under Chef Arguinzoniz’s tutelage. What was a six-months’ stay turned into years as Hastie decided to stay in Spain. This is the charm of Chef Arguinzoniz’s culinary skill.

It should no longer come as a surprise that if you search the Internet, you would come across numerous food blogs urging tourists to visit his restaurant, and it will surely be a visit worth your time and money.

Learn Some Tea Preparation Tips

If you have never tasted properly prepared tea, but you are eager to find out why these days there seems to be a big fuss with Green tea or tea in general, perhaps time has come for you to spend something extra and indulge yourself with the purchase of that highly required tea set. Sold in a variety of colors and designs, the proper tea set will allow you to enjoy tea in a way you have never thought before. But tea preparation does not begin and end with a purchase of a kettle or a cup. Apart from the tea set, if you truly want to become an inspired tea gongfu, a practiced master on tea preparation, there are a number of guides, manuals, online instructions and Chinese or Indian restaurants that can guide you through and help you take your first steps into the mystical tea world.

Experimenting with different tea varieties is fun. This new lengthier tea preparation process will soon become a new type of entertaining “ritual” you will be able to enjoy with the company of friends or a good book. You should begin by purchasing the tea set that best fits your liking and general lifestyle. If you are into a more “traditional” Chinese tea experience, you can search for the specially designed miniature unglazed wares made of the special “purple sand” clay of Yixing in Jiangsu province. But if this seems like too much trouble for you to drink a cup of tea, there are million of wonderful tea set designs available in the market for you to select from.

Now that you have your tea vessels in the house, you should direct your attention to the purchasing of the actual tea leaves you want to try. Some suggest that it is best if you begin your experimentation with the black tea varieties and later move on to the more difficultly prepared green and white teas. But, then again, this is a matter of taste, availability and choice. The fact remains that if you are determined in drawing out the best features of various refined teas you should use good tea leaves and appropriate techniques for brewing them. Even your classic or usual tea leaves will taste different after proper preparation. In fact, you will be truly surprised by the difference in taste you can draw from tea if you follow these instructions. They can make any tea tasting experience better.

Begin by collecting all the vessels you will use and to rinse them thoroughly with boiled water. Place the clean teapot, pitcher, and teacups, into a container -some use specially made tea boats, but remember that your kitchen’s sink is not recommended- and fill each one of them with water you have just brought to a boil. Rinse the hot water over them and be sure to go over every inch of the vessels. Upon finishing this “warming-up” phase, you should dispose the hot water inside the vessels and let them stand on a clear cloth -a kitchen towel will do just fine. Place the tea leaves inside the tea pot and pour hot, not boiling, water over them until the teapot is filled. Depending on the number of people drinking tea, count one table spoon of leaves for each person and one extra for the teapot and then let the tea leaves steep for a minute. Then transfer the brewed tea from the teapot to the pitcher and serve each guest with a teacup that is filled up to around 70%. If later more tea is needed, but the pitcher is empty, you can repeat the brewing process without replacing the tea leaves. Just remember to lengthen the steeping time an additional 15-20 seconds for each successive steep. The slightly additional steeping time should help to keep consistency in the tea taste without over-steeping. High quality tea leaves should be able to be steeped 4 to 6 times. Transfer the steeped tea into the tea pitcher and enjoy!

Cuisine Focus – Spanish – Food and Time

Culture and geography played a major role in shaping the Spanish cuisine. This cuisine comprises of dishes that speak of differences in terms of its people’s culinary perspective and ways. The country is also surrounded by bodies of water, therefore influencing the ingredients used in said cuisine. Spain’s rich and long history likewise added to the spectrum of its culinary gems. Many have also recognized the presence of Romans in the early periods, where precious items were traded in lieu of other commodities. It also started the trade between neighboring countries, which in effect did not only emphasize but enhance the food’s local flavor.

The featured dishes in this cuisine are varied and tend to represent Spain’s regions. It also makes use of ingredients including herbs, spices and natural produce. The presence of these valuable ingredients also paved way for the creation of delicious and homemade recipes; most of which are considered distinct and very Spanish.

It basically started with wheat, when the Romans decided to trade this item from Spain to other parts of the world. Legumes, garlic and onions are also essentials that have been traded in the passing of years. Influences have also introduced other ingredients, including potatoes and olives.

It has been said that a multitude of dishes await any Spanish cuisine aficionado. Many of these dishes vary in flavor and texture that it will never fail to satisfy your palate as a dining guest. However, a large number of these recipes are considered common due to its prevalence in certain regions, while some dishes boast of recipes that are essentially of Spanish lineage and roots.

Ingredients Utilized in Spanish Cuisine


Meat:

Chicken, Beef, Pork, Lamb

Seafood:
Squid, Mussels, Crabs, Shrimps, Prawns, Cod, Tuna, Clams

Vegetables:

Potatoes, Olives, Peppers, Tomatoes, Cabbage, Artichokes, Mushrooms

Beans:
Lentils, Chickpeas, Green Beans

Fruits:
Cherries, Bananas, Pears, Apples, Pomegranates

Nuts:
Almonds, Peanuts

Dairy:
Eggs, Milk

Considering the large number of Spanish dishes that is merely available, there are several components that make this cuisine truly definable. Many of its recipes rely on ingredients such as beans and bread. Sausages and cheeses are also popular ingredients. More so, the Spanish cuisine takes pride in its desserts and sweets. Typical samples of this are churros, flan, custard and rice pudding.

Famous dishes likewise include Gazpacho, which is a dish comprised of cold bread and tomato soup. There is the Calamares ala Romana or fried squid for seafood lovers and Chuletillas or grilled lamb chops for meat-eaters.

Stews also comprise this rich cuisine. Famous examples are bean stew or Fabada Asturiana and Cocido, which is a stew comprising of meat and chickpeas. The Famous Jamon Serrano is also identifiable with the Spanish, as it clearly represents their affinity to meats.

Spain, being a country with a long history, did not only prove how resilient its people have become. In the long run, this cuisine also showed us the relevance between food and time. Years ago, this cuisine is simply ruled by the Romans but as days pass, the originality and individuality of its people were allowed to shine. History may have taught us ways and innovative ideas. However, we should not forget that food can be a perfect medium of survival. This cuisine is never different as it vindicated its name somehow. For this cuisine showed how food can complement progress, without necessarily losing its sense of taste and innate style.

What I ate for dinner

After the delicious but shameful breakfast this morning, I am proud to say that we’ve had a brilliant dinner. A ridiculously easy to make, sort-of Sunday roast. Yumm.

For anyone living in England, a Sunday roast is a Thing You Do. OK, not everyone eats this every Sunday, but many people do. Nearly every restaurant has a Sunday roast on the menu special to Sundays. Traditionally it is served with a roast meat of some sort, carrots, peas, mashed potatoes and roast potatoes, brussel sprouts sometimes, gravy and – of course – a Yorkshire pudding.

My version is lacking the Yorkshire pudding, clearly. And I only made one kind of potato today. The addition of asparagus and mushrooms I’m chalking up to complete disregard for tradition. And the pie? Well, there are three reasons:

1. they are super good value for money;
2. they are really easy to prepare;
3. they are delicious.

Oh, and yes – they are animal free as well – but most of the time we even forget that part.

For the animal free gravy, I clean and chop a bunch of mushrooms and dice about half an onion – throw them in an pan for a bit on low heat, stirring often. I have a great pan so I don’t need to use any oil, but you could throw in some olive oil if you like. As they are cooking, I mix a few spoons of Bisto granules with boiled water from the kettle in a mug and pour this over the mushrooms and onions once they are nice and tender and juicey. (Bisto original is completely animal free – brilliant.) Sometimes I throw in a bit of white wine to thin it out; sometimes I add a bit of unsweetened soya milk to make a milkier gravy when I’m in the mood for that. None of this is measured. I usually just eyeball it all and taste along the way. It’s all very easy and pretty difficult to mess up. Not gormet, but easy and really pretty tastey.

As for the AF country pies – you can make your own really easily. I will confess however that I have been really busy today and took the easy route of store bought pies. These pies in the picture happen to be Linda McCartney Country Pies, but there are other versions out there. Just brush some soya milk on the top, wing them in the oven for half an hour while you make everything else and that’s it. Happy faces round the table.