Healthy Gluten-Free Breakfast

One of the main problems that coeliac sufferers found when trying to have a healthy and balanced breakfast is that almost all the mainstream foods that are popular to eat at breakfast, such as cereals, muesli, porridge and bread can aggravate their condition. This, of course, is very off-putting, and some coeliac sufferers decide to avoid breakfast altogether because of this. However, this is a short term solution to a long-term problem, and many coeliac sufferers are unaware that there are many different brands that can help them finally have a decent breakfast without suffering for weeks afterwards.

Although it was once thought to be very uncommon, better tests and a better awareness of coeliac disease have made it much easier for sufferers to be diagnosed and to begin a diet that will help ease their symptoms and help them live with their condition. In fact, the disease has become so well known that all of the big supermarkets in the UK and beyond now stock gluten-free products, while some even have whole sections of their supermarkets designed for coeliac sufferers. Products, such as gluten-free porridge and gluten-free oats are extremely popular, and have made it so much easier for sufferers to choose a breakfast that won’t cause them any suffering.

For people that have to have a special diet, this is a major breakthrough, as it means they can quickly and easily access and then buy the right food for them and their condition. So now, someone with a gluten intolerance can choose something that anyone else would take for granted for breakfast, such as toast, or muesli. In fact, they can now choose anything that they want to eat for breakfast, because there’s so much choice out there.

So, why not head to your local supermarket, and locate the gluten-free section. This section is sometimes known as the ‘free from’ section, and it’ll also carry other items for other people with intolerances, such as those with a lactose intolerance. Have a look at the selection, and ask yourself if you could happily eat any of these products. You probably can, so pick a selection of things, from bread, to cereal to gluten-free oats and then take them home and experiment – you could come up with a winning breakfast combination.

Food Supply

You can use the silica gel pack in combination with some food and supplies already on hand items that you may have. Let’s say you don’t have enough cash to go out and buy
the zip-lock mylar bags take a look and see if any of the food and supplies you bought from the grocery store uses mylar zip-lock bags, wash and clean them really well and air dry before next use in the food supply.

let’s say for example I want to store some Swiss miss coco, the food supply is already in its own tin foil packaging but it’s not as good as I would like to have it so I am putting it into the other mylar bag and popping in some of those silica gel packet that will help reduce the moisture greatly extend the life of the food supply.

(Remember – silica gel pack is not the same thing as a oxygen absorber oxygen absorber remove oxygen – silica gel pack removes moisture.)

Number two – take a look in your emergency plan prepper garden and if you have one take a look in your local community garden to see what is growing out there. I happen to grow a rosemary bush as well as used for cooking so what I do is I dry the rosemary I use a dehydrator but you can actually sun-dried or just cure dry them, I took off all the little rosemary’s leaves now all I have is the stems these are still extremely fragrant with rosemary essential oils and I can place these inside my prepping root cellar near the baseboards or in your cupboard to repel insects.

Number three – See what other people are throwing away and see if you can use them in your no or low cost emergency plan. I seen my neighbors down the street were throwing away a kitchen cedar chest. I snatched that bad boy up it is perfect for emergency survival the food supply.

Sweetening Up Fruit

Apricots aren’t necessary something people will have commonly, but they taste great and make a delicious snack. For those who have a bit of a sweet tooth, mixing a bit of honey, sugar and a cinnamon stick in with apricots can create a tasty sauce. Pour it over some yogurt for a snack or over frozen yogurt for dessert. If you are already a fan of chicken for dinner, try adding a little extra flavor by spicing it up with pomegranates and blackberries. After grilling the chicken, add a sauce consisting of pomegranate juice, brown sugar, molasses, blackberries and if you prefer garlic, ginger and red pepper. It’s sure to how a fresh fruit recipe take on the old classic of chicken for dinner.

For a quick breakfast in the morning, skip the buttered toast and instead make your own spread out of strawberries. All you need to make it is sugar, water, lemon zest and juice as well as the strawberries. It can be saved in a container in the refrigerator allowing for multiple uses throughout the week. Not only does it taste great, but it is also a healthy way to start off in the morning. One of the easiest ways to up your fruit intake is by whipping up a fruit salad. Mixing together blueberries, raspberries and apples can make for great fruit recipes.

If you are not quite in the mood to really prepare something, the best way to eat more fruit is usually just to find something that you like and actually want to eat. There are so many different kinds of fruit out there that it’s not hard to find something. In the summer, the abundance of watermelon is a beacon of good times and importantly also counts towards your total fruit count for the day.

Enjoy Sweet Potatoes

Carbohydrates function on a scale. The more simple the carbohydrate (or sugar) is, the faster it will burn in the body. More complex carbohydrates take a longer amount of time to be burned off in the body. Since humans utilized their carbohydrate stored as a primary source of energy, depleting the amount of carbohydrates causes the body to seek other sources of energy (in the form of calories). The body uses fats as a secondary source of energy, and proteins as a tertiary source.

For low carb recipes to work well, the simple carbs must be eliminated first. These carbohydrates are the ones that can turn into fats if they’re not used. The human body is extremely smart – it recognizes that it may need to store energy for the future, and fat is just that: long term energy storage.

Low carb recipes can still utilize some of the complex carbohydrates while remaining successful. These carbohydrates take much longer before being turned into fats in the body. Some popular complex carbohydrates include sweet potatoes, brown rice, and oatmeal. By utilizing one of these carbohydrates in each meal, low-carb diet users will be able to stay away from muscle loss (by not resorting to protein based energy) while still losing weight.

Lower carbohydrate intake will still occur with these more dense foods, and still allow for fat to be burned, without fat being stored. All three of the aforementioned carbohydrate sources are quick to prepare, yet sweet potatoes are probably the simplest and healthiest carbs of the three.

Sweet potatoes can be prepped in a variety of ways. The simplest and most effective is by baking them. Similar to baking a regular potato, start by preheating the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. While the oven is heating up, make sure to clean the sweet potatoes to ensure that no dirt is on the skin. This part is edible, so it’s key to ensure that all of the dirt is removed. Gently scrub the outside of the potatoes using a small amount of water. Dry them off, and set them aside. Next, cover a baking sheet or glass dish in aluminum foil. Don’t worry about spraying the foil with non-stick spray, as all of the sugars that would cause the potatoes to stick will be retained inside.

By now, the oven should be warm enough. Place a few sweet potatoes on the dish, and place it in the oven on the middle rack. Set a time for an hour, and let the potatoes bake. Depending on the size of the potatoes, the cooking time may vary. They should be soft and sweet when served. Be sure to not overcook them however, as they will become stringy, and the complex sugars will begin to burn slightly. No extra seasonings should be necessary!

Healthy Cafe

As a result of this consumer awareness and growing demand, virtually every Café has a selection of healthy menu items in each service of their menu rotation. These healthy choices don’t necessarily replace popular menu favorites like Chicken Fried Steak, Pizza, or Macaroni and Cheese, but instead provide a range of healthy alternatives to café guests. Whether the guest selects a grilled chicken salad labeled as heart healthy, or decides to indulge in a grilled cheese sandwich with fries, the choice is left up to the guest.

So how do you measure the performance of healthy menu items, and determine which ones should remain in rotation, and which ones should be replaced with more appealing choices? Although the long line out the door whenever the Sushi Chef prepares fresh California Rolls at lunchtime is the only clue you will need to measure the popularity of the Sushi Bar, other items will require a review of historical sales data to evaluate their performance.

To track healthy meal sales, all menu items within the inventory file of the Café’s POS System should be added to an appropriate department, and then sorted further into a sub department or sub category. Label one of your sub departments “Healthy” to track healthy sales. For example, an egg white omelet could be added to the breakfast department, then further sorted into the sub department of Healthy. A turkey and vegetable wrap may be added to the lunch department, then added to the sub department Healthy. As a result of this categorization, both the egg white omelet and the turkey wrap will appear in the “Healthy” sub department, which will make tracking and comparing their historical sales information an easy process. Depending upon your POS system’s reporting abilities, an alternative approach is to create a Healthy Department, then create sub departments of breakfast, lunch, etc. and then create reports using the Healthy Department as a sorting method. With either approach, sales history reporting is available to track the Café’s Healthy item sales.

Upon a review of the sales performance data, healthy menu items which are not selling well could be discounted to help market the items and improve their sales. Review sales history data again after promoting the discount so that the effectiveness of this marketing strategy can be measured.

Tell us about the success of your Healthy menu selections, and what has helped promote their sales.

Mixing Cocktails

Not Observing Proper Proportions

Do not think that stronger is better. Cocktail drinks are not supposed to be strong. So, make sure you observe proper proportions to make a well-balanced drink.

Skimping On Ice

Remember that ice is crucial when mixing cocktails. It does not only cool the drink down to a nice temperature, but also dilutes the drink to proper ratio.

Treating All Ingredients Equal

With regards to muddling, not all ingredients are the same. It’s best to muddle harder ingredients like citrus a bit more vigorously than delicate ingredients such as fresh herbs.

Forgetting The Garnish

Garnish is not merely about aesthetics. It also adds a certain finishing flavour profile to the cocktail. Before you put a garnish of fresh herbs on your cocktail, rub them between your palms to release oils. If you’re using citrus peel, squeeze it together over the cocktail, skin side down, before you add it to the rim of the glass.

Ruining A Cocktail With Bad Ice

Yes, there is such thing as bad ice! If ice has been in the freezer for too long, it can start to take on the tastes and smells of the freezer. These can make their way into the cocktail’s flavour, spoiling it. Use fresh ice in order to have better cocktails.

Skipping The Bitters

A few dashes of bitters could be just the thing it requires to make your cocktail go from OK to awesome. They add complexity to your cocktail, which you won’t get otherwise. However, remember not to overdo it. Just a few drops can go a long way.

Forgetting to Observe The Ice

When you are shaking a cocktail drink, you should look at the ice cubes to know when your drink is ready. Smooth edges on the ice cubes means that you have reached the ideal dilution, which is around 25%.

Frozen Seafood

Consumer awareness has also played a major role in the development and growth of this market worldwide. Today there are major fishing companies who cater to this growing demand of Seafood among consumers. You can find a variety of frozen Seafood like White Shrimp, Frozen Blue Mussels, Alaska Pollock, Atlantic Cod, frozen squid and many more, easily available at a supermarket or a stall near you.

But the question is; as a consumer, are you aware of where and how your Seafood is process. How do you know if it’s safe for consumption and really wholesome? Are these questions important?

Though there are many health benefits attached to seafood, extreme caution is must in the preserving of these food items. Strict quality control ways including proper storage with the right temperature control and protection against environmental contamination is a must.

Today most fish are flash-frozen as soon as their caught. This technique helps delay the decaying process and helps keep intact the nutritional value of the fish. Major fish suppliers take utmost care about quality control and the way these Frozen Seafood’s are transported. Despite all these measures it is the customer who needs to know what he picks is safe or not.

How can you be sure? Check whether the Seafood is store properly. Normally fish kept at a temperature between 0-1° C. Fish will survive for long if gutted. If not refrigerated, make sure that the fish is kept on a thick layer of ice which is not melting and preferably covers the fish properly. When buying whole fish or fillets see that its flesh is firm and shiny and there are no signs of discolouration. The gills of the fish bright red coloured with no milky slime. The fish should not have a stale or sour odour; buy fish that smells mild and fresh. If buying packed fish, read the label carefully and make sure that it has refrigerated at the recommended temperature, check the packaging date. Make sure it isn’t old stock. Inspect the package properly for any damage and avoid buying stuff with damaged packaging.

There is also a need to make sure that the Seafood is care of after it leaves the stall till it reaches your plate and here it’s your responsibility to take utmost care that your Seafood remains safe on its way back home and throughout.

If frozen Seafood is on your shopping list get it at the end of your shopping. In that way you will cut its time away from the refrigerator. If it’s going take you more than 30 minutes to reach home, it’s advisable to store your Frozen food in an insulated bag or in some other way make sure its kept cool. Once home, securely wrap and immediately place it in the freezer to prevent spread of bacteria.

Street Markets of Athens

These markets happen once a week in most suburbs of Athens, and I can happily spend time wandering around them picking up courgette (zucchini) flowers and cooking them along with courgettes, onions, aubergines (egg plants) lots of garlic, feta cheese and olive oil. I simply put all the ingredients in a baking tray and cook them in the oven on a moderate heat about three-quarters of an hour. The result is delicious.

The tomatoes here are huge and tasty, so you can stuff them with rice or fried minced meat and onions and garlic, place them in a baking tray with a little water and cook for about half an hour to an hour.

The vegetables in the markets are very fresh and I was delighted to get a lot of garlic, plaited together for only a couple of euros. Onions here are usually the red variety, but you can find white ones if you really try – but why would you when the red ones are so tasty?

You can find all kinds of fresh and frozen fish at these street markets, including one of my favourites, red mullet. The whitebait type of fish is very tasty here, although I prefer to eat this at a taverna on a beach.

The other day I was at Glyfada with a couple of friends, sitting at a taverna almost on a beach. We ordered prawns, octopus, mussels and squid, along with a Greek salad (with feta cheese) and I can honestly say, the food there was extremely fresh. It tastes different to the seafood you get slightly further away from the sea, although perhaps that’s just my imagination.

The markets close around three in the afternoon, and what’s left is sold off very cheaply, which is great news for the impoverished people who go to them. There’s nothing wrong with the quality, but the stallholders simply want to sell as much as they can rather than transporting it back to their homes or garages. The fresh produce is much cheaper than you can buy in a supermarket, so these markets are well worth a visit.

Vegan Muffins

Ethical vegans believe strongly in living a compassionate lifestyle, with respect for all living things. Because of this belief, they choose not to use animal products of any kind, as they know that animals that are used as commodities are confined, abused, and slaughtered. The place where dietary and ethical vegans meet is in the area of food.

There are some obvious areas where the vegan diet is superior to the standard American diet. The vegan diet is usually very high in fiber, iron, and the vitamins C and E, but is usually lower in calories and saturated fat. Cholesterol is completely absent from the vegan diet, as it is only found in animal products.

While vegans tend to be defined by the foods they avoid, in fact they frequently have a much more varied diet than most people. Most vegans enjoy experimenting with new fruits, vegetables, grains, and beans, and they find creative ways to put them together in new recipes. A vegan shopping basket will have a distinctly healthy look to it, with basics such as cereals, whole wheat bread, fruit, salads, vegetables, pasta, beans, and hummus.

Being vegan doesn’t mean you have to give up the special little luxuries we all like to indulge ourselves in from time to time, however. There are many online resources for vegan desserts, as well as many vegan cookbooks in print. Take the time to try some of the many delicious vegan treats. Vegan muffins, for example, taste decadent, but they are often lighter in calories and fat than their non-vegan counterparts, and they have no cholesterol. Try a rich vegan pumpkin chocolate chip muffin, dense and moist, with a heavenly combination of flavors. Or imagine biting into a fluffy blueberry muffin without worrying that you’re clogging your arteries with saturated fat and cholesterol.

Most supermarkets carry plenty of products to satisfy vegan dietary requirements, but a supermarket that caters especially to vegans will have a large number of special products not available in regular stores–vegan frozen entrees, lunch “meats,” desserts, non-dairy milks of all sorts, and snack foods.

Veganism is not just an American phenomenon. People in other countries also know the benefits a healthy and compassionate lifestyle can bring. There are vegan supermarkets springing up everywhere, with Europe leading the way, especially Germany, which is right up at the top of the recognized vegan-friendly nations. A wander around one of these establishments is a real eye opener for the unconverted, with vegan options seemingly for almost everything. A particular treat are the vegan muffins that come in all manner of combinations, but each significantly lighter than the standard versions. Peanut butter and chocolate, parsnips and apples, or oranges and cranberries are just some of the unlikely alliances that have been put together to create delicacies.

While cooking and eating at home are positive activities, vegans also like to eat at restaurants, just like everyone else. Eating out would once upon a time have been a real problem for vegans, but the modern world has caught up and vegans are catered for in large numbers of restaurants these days. Chinese, Indian and Mexican establishments all have meal alternatives that are designed to appeal to a vegan customer.

Pink Slime Meat

Manufacturers are allowed under USDA rules to add up to 15% of the filler in ground beef to be considered safe. And, this is another situation where no labeling requirements are required to tell consumers what is in the products because it is considered a manufacturing process. Consumers who purchase ground beef, other than ‘organic’ or ‘grass fed’ clearly labeled ‘no ammonia added’, where it is not allowed, are probably consuming pink slime without knowing it.

The critics argue that ammonia hydroxide has a role in pink slime the same as the role in cheese, baked goods, and some chocolate. It has been shown ammonium hydroxide acts as a leavening agent in baked goods, acidity in cheese, and some chocolate products. When it is heated, the ammonia gas is released and does not stay in the food. Which brings the question of safety in the filler where ammonium hydroxide is added after the heating process. It is made up of nitrogen and hydrogen from natural sources.

According to chemical fact sheets, ammonium hydroxide is made by diluting anhydrous ammonia, a colorless, corrosive, and highly irritating gas, in water. The anhydrous ammonia is produced from a process of mixing nitrogen and hydrogen in the presence of a catalyst or as a by-product of petroleum refining processes. Diluting it in water may make it a safer alternative, but it still contains health hazards. Respiratory problems can still come from low concentrations.

The only way to avoid pink slime beef is to look for meat labeled as ‘grass fed beef’ that is clearly labeled ‘no ammonia added’. Even though, some other products may not contain this filler, there is no way to adequately know without the proper labeling. It is considered a manufacturing process that does not require the proper labeling for consumers to know its presence, therefore the transparency in labeling is not required.

Even with critics arguing the safety of pink slime, is it appropriate to use contaminated parts of animals in the food supply system where diseased animals are not allowed to be used? What’s the difference? Is one contamination different than another? Is not contamination still contamination regardless of the source? What do you think?

Rebecca is passionate about spreading education on how toxins are added to manufacturing processes and what research says about them. In efforts to reduce toxins in our own environment, it is imperative to educate oneself about how to avoid bringing toxins home from the grocery store by way of products.