Foods That Help Your Fitness Goals

Foods That Help Your Fitness Goals

Recently I had been called to judge a unique food contest. The contest was sponsored by a fitness club and had the theme of fitness food recipes. The various recipes the contestants came up with were interesting and tasty too. We often tend to prefer the calorie-laden foods because we feel that they taste better. And the calorie restricted foods are often tolerated just because we need them to lose weight and get fit. But even the so called fitness foods can taste delicious, besides giving health benefits. The contest I attended was proof enough. Here are some of the foods that boost your physical activity, help in speedy recovery and build muscle mass.

Endurance food

Studies done on the effect of honey on the body, when taken prior to exercise, reveal that it helped in releasing fuel to the body in a timely manner resulting in a steady level of blood sugar and insulin. The active ingredients present in honey boost speed, power and endurance. When cyclists were given honey before and at an interval of 20 miles all through a race of 40 miles, the honey was able to boost endurance and speed. To increase the benefits, you can add it to an oatmeal snack before your workouts.

Food for stamina

Bright red beetroot has been found to be more potent than caffeine. In fact, it gives more power than any other supplement you can find now. Studies done in UK show that male athletes, who had taken beetroot juice before their cycling could keep up the activity 16% longer. To increase your performance, keep a juicer handy, so you can make fresh beet juice and be at peak performance year round. If you don’t fancy making the juice yourself, there is always bottled beet juice available, which you can drink as such or blend it into one of your pre workout smoothies.

Anti-inflammatory foods

Blueberries have found to have excellent anti-inflammatory properties. Eating blueberries helps to boost the natural immunity cells. When you cannot have the fresh blueberries, you can also try the freeze-dried or dried blueberries. I often add them to my gym bag. I usually workout at the gym in the mornings, but when I cannot make it in the mornings I exercise in the evening too. Though the ride back is difficult during night I manage to reach home safely thanks to the led bar light I purchased at this website. With the light bar, I don’t have any problem with the oncoming lights. This has made nighttime driving a breeze.

Recently I had been called to judge a unique food contest. The contest was sponsored by a fitness club and had the theme of fitness food recipes. The various recipes the contestants came up with were interesting and tasty too. We often tend to prefer the calorie-laden foods because we feel that they taste better. And the calorie restricted foods are often tolerated just because we need them to lose weight and get fit. But even the so called fitness foods can taste delicious, besides giving health benefits. The contest I attended was proof enough. Here are some of the foods that boost your physical activity, help in speedy recovery and build muscle mass.

Endurance food

Studies done on the effect of honey on the body, when taken prior to exercise, reveal that it helped in releasing fuel to the body in a timely manner resulting in a steady level of blood sugar and insulin. The active ingredients present in honey boost speed, power and endurance. When cyclists were given honey before and at an interval of 20 miles all through a race of 40 miles, the honey was able to boost endurance and speed. To increase the benefits, you can add it to an oatmeal snack before your workouts.

Food for stamina

Bright red beetroot has been found to be more potent than caffeine. In fact, it gives more power than any other supplement you can find now. Studies done in UK show that male athletes, who had taken beetroot juice before their cycling could keep up the activity 16% longer. To increase your performance, keep a juicer handy, so you can make fresh beet juice and be at peak performance year round. If you don’t fancy making the juice yourself, there is always bottled beet juice available, which you can drink as such or blend it into one of your pre workout smoothies.

Anti-inflammatory foods

Blueberries have found to have excellent anti-inflammatory properties. Eating blueberries helps to boost the natural immunity cells. When you cannot have the fresh blueberries, you can also try the freeze-dried or dried blueberries. I often add them to my gym bag. I usually workout at the gym in the mornings, but when I cannot make it in the mornings I exercise in the evening too. Though the ride back is difficult during night I manage to reach home safely thanks to the led bar light I purchased at this website. With the light bar, I don’t have any problem with the oncoming lights. This has made nighttime driving a breeze.

Reduce fatigue with protein

Pea protein has been found to be rich in amino acids that reduce fatigue during workouts.  This powder extracted from yellow hued peas has arginine, which has immunity boosting properties. The powder also contains lysine, which enhances calcium absorption and reduces loss of calcium thereby helping in maintaining bone strength.  You can increase the effect of the protein by making a smoothie of almond milk, almond butter, berries, frozen cherries and cinnamon.

Food as you can see serves more purposes than you can ever imagine. By choosing the right foods, you can boost your performance and health greatly.

Pea protein has been found to be rich in amino acids that reduce fatigue during workouts.  This powder extracted from yellow hued peas has arginine, which has immunity boosting properties. The powder also contains lysine, which enhances calcium absorption and reduces loss of calcium thereby helping in maintaining bone strength.  You can increase the effect of the protein by making a smoothie of almond milk, almond butter, berries, frozen cherries and cinnamon.

Food as you can see serves more purposes than you can ever imagine. By choosing the right foods, you can boost your performance and health greatly.

Working up an Appetite

tasty food looks so yummy...As a person who loves to eat and try new foods whenever the opportunity arises, I know what a pain it can be to stay in shape when surrounded by tasty things. I also know that sometimes, regardless of how delicious or well made a meal might be, people just aren’t hungry. Finding the right balance between eating too much and eating too little is a struggle many of us endure without ever finding that perfect balance, but there are ways to beat it. For starters, exercising before you start eating can help you to eat less in a variety of reasons, some of which I’ll explain here.

You ever read about Isaac Newton before? He’s the one who came up with the laws of physics, basic high school stuff, or maybe even middle school the way they’re trying to cram information into kids these days. Well he said an object in motion tends to stay in motion, while an object at rest tends to stay at rest. He may have been talking about heavenly bodies and objects throughout the world, but the same can be said for people. Active people tend to stay active and inactive people tend to stay on the couch. Want to guess who has the higher metabolism among the two?

Well it’s been proven time and time again that intense physical activity boosts the body’s metabolism. That need for energy will have your brain telling this that and the other piece to start breaking down ready sugars or stored fats and using them to fuel your function. So, even if you’re going to be sitting down for the meal, exercising for a short time beforehand can give you an edge on getting rid of the food you eat, as well as help you to feel fuller faster by encouraging digestion before you even start eating.

dfitness is the best after allLots of games require other people around to play, so you’ll want to stick with something you can comfortably do alone, without help from anyone else. I’ve found that throwing around this MMA JIU JITSU dummy gets muscles all over my body working and helps me to break a little sweat before I eat. Some of these dummies are really heavy and in those cases, tossing them around can feel like tossing around an actual person. You might not do much tossing at all in that case, but that’s not the point. The point is getting active before eating and this accomplishes it nicely.

I’m probably downplaying the awesomeness of these guys, as handsome as they might be. You could always throw around medicine balls or some other compact, dense and heavy object; whatever you have handy. Calisthenics are another good choice and they don’t require any weights at all. Stuff like running in place, jumping jacks, pushups and other quick, easy exercises will work just as well for this purpose. If you want to master food, you’ve got to teach your body how to handle it and process it fast. Just think of this as training, if that helps.

How to Win Competitive Eating Contests

How to Win Competitive Eating Contests

I’m a major foodie, so I guess it only makes sense that I’ve been to a fair share of competitive eating contests. Usually it’s just to watch other people stuffing their faces, but I’ve also actively participated in a contest before. It was a pizza eating contest and I do love pizza, so I guess I had a natural advantage over the other eaters. I won that time and got a serger for my efforts – get the facts about serger and read the full info here about what serger I won.

I’m skipping any details here since most of the people who visit my blog are looking to read about food, not sewing machines. That said, I think it’s a good time to get back to the topic, which is how to win competitive eating contests. I didn’t undergo any special training, but I probably should have and I realize how lucky I was to win against other people doing some of the things I’m going to mention here. The best place to start, I think, is with a popular bit of competitive eating myth.

eat as fast as you canmCutting back on the amount you eat before an eating contest is not the way to gain an edge. When you eat less than normal, your stomach literally shrinks a bit because it isn’t working at capacity like it ought to be. If this goes on for a long time, your stomach can actually lose inches of itself as the elastic bits pull in and the organ compacts itself. I don’t think I need to tell you that having less room to put food into means you can take in less food, but I’ve gone and said it just in case.

So don’t starve yourself in the days or weeks leading up to a competitive eating contest. Instead, you should actually be eating more than you regularly do. It doesn’t have to be high calorie food either – you could load up on stuff which is basically free and full of fiber, like all kinds of vegetables for instance. You’ll keep your stomach stretched and ready to accept a greater load of food than normal, and you’ll also not blow up and gain a bunch of weight because of it.

Lots of people think competitive eaters are just gluttons, but that’s not true. It’s a physical test, just like many other sports, where the player (or eater in this case) must outperform the other people they are playing against to win. Any edge can help you to beat your opponent, but keeping your stomach stretched is no little edge.

Last but not least, make sure you don’t load up on water during the event. Sure, they provide you with all the water you can drink, but in my experience, that’s to help the food go down more quickly. If your stomach gets full of water, you’ll be cramping or busting your gut long before you can claim a victory in any competitive eating contest. That said, don’t be afraid to reach for your cup if taking a drink means you’ll be able to move ahead and keep eating.

What natural foods can you grow at home?

What natural foods can you grow at home?

People are becoming very conscious day by day about their foods. This is because many harmful chemical are being used to grow many natural foods. Therefore, many people are growing natural foods on their own at home. It not necessary for you to be a farmer to grow few plants at home. Spending a portion of your leisure time can make that possible. Growing natural foods at home with awesome modern LED technology you can eat fresh and healthy foods. At the same time you can save your money that you would otherwise spend to buy those foods. Few natural foods that can be grown at home are discussed here.


You can grow cauliflower in your garden quite easily. Remember cauliflowers needs fertile soil that has well drainage facilities. It is better to add some fertilizer to the soil well in advance before cultivating cauliflower. Shelter spot increases the growth of cauliflower. Do not forget to water them time to time.


It is quite easy to grow ginger at home. Just buy some ginger chunks and cover them with soil at pots or in the garden facing the freshest bud up. Ensure indirect sunlight for best result.


Growing broccoli is much more similar to growing cauliflower at home. Broccoli needs the same soil condition as cauliflower needs. It is wise to cultivate broccoli after every two years for best growth at the same soil.


This is another common and popular vegetable that you can grow at your home in abundance. Potato best grows in worm and moist place. Make sure the soil has proper drainage facilities as sogginess could hamper growth of them. Ensure the maximum sunlight for the soil possible.


Autumn is the best time to grow blackberries. At this time of the year blackberry plants get sufficient sunlight without over exposing roots. Make an arch for the blackberry bush to grow. Add some fertilizer to the soil at spring. Do not forget to water them time to time but make sure the soil does not get soggy.


Sandy soil is ideal for growing asparagus. Find a sheltered but open place for their bed. You can grow them from both seeds and crowns. Make the bed for asparagus raised.


Once you grow an apple tree in your garden, you do not to buy apples from market for many years. Before you plant a apple tree make sure the soil is well fertilized. You can use organic materials or compost to the soil. Make a wide hole into the soil to plant the young tree. You can put some compost at the bottom of that hole for better growth. Gently fill the hole with soil mixed with compost.

Things to Consider Before Opening a Fast Food Restaurant

Things to Consider Before Opening a Fast Food Restaurant

There is a huge popularity of fast foods among people. Therefore, it is not a bad idea to open a fast food restaurant. However, food is not the only thing that you must consider before opening a fast food restaurant. You have to consider several other factors too.


The first thing you must consider before opening a fast food restaurant is type of food you want to provide. Selling all types of fast foods is not a wise idea. You must decide your specialty in providing foods. For example, Pizza Huts is not popular for selling burgers or chicken fries and you will not go to McDonalds to have a pizza. Therefore, determine what type of food you want be specialized in. It could be sandwiches, burgers, chicken fries, pizzas or any other types of fast food.


Location is important for any small business. Fast food restaurants’ businesses greatly depend on their locations. If your location is not good, it will be tough for you to continue. It is better to choose a location close to office area, schools, colleges, universities, shopping malls etc. You also may consider a location by the highways.


Try to indentify the possible cost associated in starting up the fast food business. Also consider how you will manage that cost. Moreover, it is important to manage the cost until your business makes profit. If you need other investors or bank loans to fund your business, make a business proposal that convinces them.

Health Codes:

You must abide by all the rules and regulations related to health. Therefore, before you open a fast food restaurant, have a clear idea bout those rules. The laws could differ in states to states and country to country.


Different fast food restaurants require different types of equipments to prepare foods. And you might need to spend most of your initial investment buying equipments. Therefore, you may consider leasing those equipments instead of buying if you are starting with a lower amount of money.


Not only foods but also staffs make a restaurant profitable. It is wise to hire highly skilled staff during the beginning of the business to create a strong image of your fast food restaurant. If the image is good, people will come back automatically. Besides, if customers do not get proper service, it is unlikely for them as well as other potential customers to come to your restaurants.


It is important to know your competitors before opening any sort of businesses. Indentify the other fast food outlets in the area where you are planning to open your restaurants. Try to know there strength, weakness, strategies in details.


How to Judge a Food Contest?

Nowadays, different food contests are being organized around the world due their increasing popularity among common people. Therefore, demand for judges is increasing too. Judging these food contests is very important since success of any food contests mostly depends on the judges. An ideal judge of food contest follows some important guidelines.

Before Contest Starts:

It is important to get a clear idea about food contest rules before the contest starts. Besides, judges must study to have more idea about recipes, foods, ingredients, garnishing, cooking apparatus etc. Try to be as professional as possible and set your personal preferences aside.

During The Contest:

Talk to other judges to know if there is any last-minute change in instructions. Have your judging sheet ready. It is good to judge foods according to their difficulties. Get introduced with the contestants at the beginning of the food contest.

Judging Steps:

Time – First step in judging is to see if the food prepared by contestants is within the time allocated according to the contest rules.

See – Look for the presentation of foods along with color, garnishing etc. The look of food should be attractive. However, do not hesitate to penalize for excessive décor or inappropriate or extra use of garnishing.

Smell – Try to smell the aroma of foods. Also check if there is any burned smell coming from the food. Do not give extra point for using excessive flavoring or seasoning.

Inspect – To get the clear picture of a food you must cut the dish and expose the bottom, middle and top layers along with sides and center to inspect. Look for burned, off-colored, overcooked, undercooked or raw portion in the dish. Also check for evenness in color and cooking. Give more points for even cooking, consistent surface texture & color, pleasant aroma. On the other hand, penalize for soggy, tough, raw, burned spots, crumbling or brittle results, spotty cooking.

Taste – To taste all the dishes prepared by contestants it is important that you keep your hunger even for the last dish to be tasted. Taste for all the ingredients that mentioned in the recipe. Check the flavor if that is too strong. Also check if all the ingredients are perfectly cooked. Find out if there is any ingredient used that is not mentioned. Also penalize for missing ingredients. Try to taste a smallest amount of servings that are enough to judge a dish.

Make Notes –You might forget specific observation about an item after tasting few others. That is why it is important to write down any notes about dishes when you are judging.

Double Check Scores – Double check your scores for different dishes. Do not hesitate to taste again a dish if you are confused about that.

Some things worth thinking about before the birds arrive

It may still be a couple of months away for you but I’m already thinking about it and I cannot wait. Spring time is one of my favorite periods of the year. Apart from the weather being almost perfect it is for me a period of renewal and hope.

Spring allows me to shed what I could not lose during those cold winter months that kept me indoors for so long. Restaurant doors open a little wider this time of year, knowing well that many of their regulars, and a few new customers too, will be willingly making their way up one or two blocks just to get to dinner on time and mainly because it’s so great to be walking about in the evening again.

New bells and whistles for the kitchen

Thinking of new bells and whistles for my own kitchen, would you believe me if I told you that the Doorbel Base  reminded me of something rather important. My sprawling, renovated kitchen stretches out far over the patio with just the polished glass sliding door separating me from the fresh air and the birds when they arrive. Birds are alright, they just fly on down. But when my new spring time guests arrive, they still need to get through the front door.

So, my husband and I thought that this time around and for once and for all, we’d replace the giant brass bell we sourced from one of my food trips with a wireless doorbell fully-equipped with a transmitter and receiver. That way when the new guests arrive and I’m still clacking about in the kitchen, I’ll hear them loud and clear and won’t have to keep them waiting any longer than they need to.

Cooking the books and how much we made

It’s also a great safety feature for restaurant owners to have. Many of them are chefs and still have to manage their time equally among supervising their kitchen staff, preparing new menus and let’s just say, cooking the books. No matter what the trade is, but because their margins are always tight, perhaps this is more so for the small restaurant, the biggest talking point of any small business may be ‘well, how much did we make tonight’.

The consummate restaurateur might not be checking receipts until the next morning but, late at night, cash and receipt records still need to be stored away safely. And I don’t yet know of one reliable security company that is going to come out at two in the morning to help out. As I may have mentioned in an earlier post on starting up, it’s all about location. But the doorbell, front and back of the shop, will be a start.

Apart from cleaning out the bird house and buying new birdseed, there’s prime cuts and organic garden vegetable harvesting still to think about. Along with security and peace of mind and putting a smile on customers’ faces, these things also take up time. So, I guess I’ll be seeing you then.

Favorite Colors and Palettes for your Kitchen Repainting

kitchen-728727_1280As a certified foodie, I consider the kitchen my sanctuary. Just recently, a friend of mine asked me about what I think would be the best color for her kitchen re-painting project. I admit, interior design and anything that has to do with it is not really my forte but anyway, here’s my two cents worth.

Choosing kitchen colors

Being one of the most used parts of the house, the kitchen should have an inviting and warm ambiance. The kitchen design, décor, layout and color combinations all play a role in creating a welcoming kitchen. Of these aspects, the color scheme is often the easiest to alter that can result in maximum benefits. You can even DIY the kitchen repainting project. For this DIY job, you may need to look for a quality air compressor from review sites like the

Everyone will have their favorites, but not all colors are equally good for your kitchen. With the thousands of colors to choose from, the selection process can be intimidating. Among the top picks for kitchen re-painting, the colors white, gray, yellow, red, green, and blue simply stand out. Each of these hues brings in unique character for the room, but they all help make it a welcoming and warm space.

  1. White

Most of us start our day in the kitchen, and the color white can give your kitchen that revitalizing energy. A brightly lit white kitchen can give you a great head start. It also makes the kitchen look and feel clean and fresh. White also blends well with other colors and designs, making your kitchen versatile.

  1. Gray

Recently, neutral colors have dominated modern houses. While some see gray as cold, the right shade of gray can work perfectly for your kitchen. It pairs up well with most modern kitchen appliances as well as other furniture. You won’t also have a difficult time blending it with cabinetry and countertop.

  1. Yellow

Yellow can brighten up any room. Like a ray of sunshine, it can create a happy and calm feel for your kitchen. If your kitchen space is limited, yellow can make it look brighter and more spacious. It teams up well with gray and white accents too.

  1. homes-for-sale-326998_1280Red

Red is a very warm color and is thought to stimulate appetite. This property of warm colors makes them excellent for kitchens. Red does not only keep your food cravings up, but is also incredibly versatile. You can mix and match red with other hues, such on odd walls or cabinetry, to create a more interesting kitchen.

  1. Green

Green is a safe and smart color option for kitchen repainting project. There are a number of shades to choose from including yellow green, apple green and mint. These shades pair perfectly with both wood and modern accents. You can also be experimental with the shades of green. This lively color can energize your kitchen, especially when used for cabinets, accent wall, floor or an island.

  1. Blue

Another color that can make your kitchen look clean and crisp, blue is an old favorite when it comes to kitchen walls, cabinets, and even ceiling. Although use of blue, especially the darker shades, can be overpowering, using it sparingly creates invigorating ambiance. When using darker shades, make sure to add neutral tones to keep the room from looking dark and intense.

Adding spices to our food

Some people just love food. Food is an inseparable part of our lives. Food gives us the energy to do our day to day activities and also help us maintain our health and keeps us fit. It is the source of energy for our body. Without food one can‘t survive the world. It is the source of all necessary nutrition in our body. But this does not mean in any way that we can eat anything in anyway available. Food apart from being eatable should fit our taste.

Taste is an important factor that determines our food selection. Food needs to be of the right taste. Without the food being tasty it would not be able to pass down from our throats. The selection and the choice of food is what make us different from animals. Animals eat what they get. But that cannot happen in our case. Surely it cannot.

Spices have been of great importance once it comes to make food tasty. Spices add to both the flavor and color of the food and make them more delicious than ever. When man discovered that food that he acquired from nature could not be eaten u raw then he started to find out ways and means to tackle the problem. Not all food could be eaten taw by human beings. If could be eaten then the problem arose with digestion as the stomach of human beings is not built up to digest raw carbohydrate. That is why we cannot eat leaves and hays and grasses raw, directly from the plant. We also can’t eat potatoes and wheat and rice raw. We need to cook them before we can eat them.

Once man acquired the knowledge of cooking food, they began the tryst to make food tastier and more delicious for their consumption. And the one thing that remained the same in the ingredients though the ages without change is the spices.

Spices are the measure of the taste for any food. When we add salt in any food preparation, the taste and the color of that dish changes entirely. Salt is a basic ingredient for any dish. Too much of it or less of it can change the preparation for absolute disaster. Salt is also associated with our health. Consumption of too much salt will add too much of ions in to the blood stream of our body and thus our blood pressure will increase. Chilies also excite us. Chilies are the one thing that can make you dance on your toes. Its superb burning sensation can make you jump and sweat and even cry or laugh like a mad man. These kinds of spices are like the modern digital multimeter of our body. They could track and trace the tolerance level of ours and could easily tell us how much long we can we survive in an uncomfortable situation. Chilies can definitely do that.

Other spices that we regularly use in our food are turmeric and cinnamon, cardamom among others. They both add to the taste and have anti septic and other medicinal advantages as well.

Spices are really important for us. It really means a lot for the human race. The British got the Indian subcontinent under leash for spices, for god’s sake! Remember?

How Food and Music Go Together

Those of you who have been reading my posts regularly know that the overriding theme is food, glorious food, lots of it. You also know that the website promotes a lot more than just food. It’s a fusion of many cultures, and during my food-expo visits I spend a fair amount of time observing how dishes and menus are put together and how gourmands and ordinary folks like you and me react to the feasts put before us.

No good chef worth his salt likes to see his patrons go hungry. More importantly, he does not like to see them disappointed either.

Food, glorious food

Before I elaborate any further, let me explain this ditty a little more for you. ‘Food, glorious food’ is taken from one of the movie industry’s all-time musical greats. This British movie came out in the seventies and, critically acclaimed, won numerous awards. Oliver was adapted for the screen from the famous English writer, Charles Dickens’ nineteenth century classic, Oliver Twist. ‘Food, glorious food’ is a musical reflection of this scene; The story’s protagonist and dozens of other little orphans, stomachs grumbling, are celebrating the fact that they are finally going to eat.

Porridge and gruel is hardly a meal but these kids were starving. To them, a meal is still a meal. But to you and me, and we are grateful for this, it is much more than that. It is a celebration of life. It is a cultural experience. Invariably, the meals that we prepare for our families are indicative of embracing other cultures apart from our own. Without mentioning any particular dishes, we are visiting countries from around the world while we dine.

Music is on the menu

To name just a few in no particular order; India, China, Italy, France, Germany and England, even Thailand and Vietnam. And because we have embraced our cultural diversity, we have adopted one or two of these countries as our own. Hands up those of you who enjoy Mexican dishes. I have an indelible impression of this nation’s typical restaurant setting.  Picture this then; it is Valentine’s Day and you are out dining with the love of your life.

To add to the culinary and cultural experience, apart from the romance, a talented group of Mexican musicians, resplendent in their traditional costumes, wide-rimmed Sombrero’s, accompanied by the notes of their brass-coated horns and acoustic guitars, are doing the rounds of the tables, much to the delight of the restaurant’s regular patrons. To add to the romantic flavor, a lone musician does his solo right before you, strumming his fiddle. Playing the violin is no mean feat, let me add. Further, Violinio mentions briefly what budding violinists are in for when applying themselves to this instrument for the first time.

Now, the next time you go out to wine and dine, try and locate a restaurant which adds music to the culinary and cultural mix and experience first-hand how food and music go together.

10 Nice & Workout Wise Healthy Food Snacks

10 Nice & Workout Wise Healthy Food Snacks

If you currently perform any workout routine or planning for it in the near future, and are looking for advice on healthy dieting that should be a part of it, read on. Following are some great food items that you should opt for:

Note: this list is divided into pre and post workout snacks, 5 for each:

The “Pre” Snacks

Here is a very interesting point that few people are aware of: Your body builds muscle and performs recovery throughout the day, and not just during your gym sessions. Moreover, nature has truly blessed us with an amazingly functioning body. And this is even more evident from the fact that by consuming snacks in a perfectly timed manner, we will give ourselves the fuel we require to recover and to burn fat. Also, by doing so, we can increase our muscle in the best of manners.

By eating pre-workout, it is meant that you consume a snack an hour or thirty minutes before beginning your routine. This depends on your snack’s content and proportion, and that either your stomach is grumbling a lot or not.

So, here are 5 pre-workout items that you should definitely opt for:

tasty looking fruit in a cup1) The Fruit Cup

If you prefer to keep your diet simple, try consuming a good blend of fruits before your routine. You can opt for a cup containing oranges, berries mixed with a touch of banana. But while making the cup, just make sure that you put all the ingredients in fairly equal quantity. Additionally, other fruits may also be added but this must be consumed fresh.

2) The “Dried” Fruit Cup

If you love dry fruits, here is some good news for you: They will surely be of help to you with your workout. On your behalf, you should try a quarter cup of apricots and berries – both dried.

3) Toast and boiled eggs

As per many nutrition experts, eggs are truly a wonderful gift of nature that provides us a whole bunch of energy. So if you are a fan of this food and prefer consuming it on a regular basis, try eating it before your workout. You can go for either a single or 2 eggs (should be hard-boiled) along with a whole-wheat toast.

4) The Energy Bar

While searching for a bar, you will find tons of items throughout the market. On your behalf, you should go for something that features the highest ratio of natural ingredients. Here, many experts suggest that you should look out for the bar’s protein count. But besides this, it will also be wise to have a closer look at its sugar content and make sure it does not resemble any sugar coated candy.

5) Sports drink

That’s right, a good sports drink consumed before the workout is a fine option, and will bring a positive change to your body. But,, keep in mind that you should prefer a drink that features less than ten grams in sugar content. Also, besides keeping an eye on sugar, you must also drink an appropriate quantity of the drink. Here it is generally recommended that you consume 8 ounces a day.

The “Post” Snacks

A lot of visitors to the gym consume a food for fitness after their workout session. This is since it aids them in their building of muscle as well as the restoration of physical energy.

Following are some great snacks that will suit you best after your workout session:

The Monkey Shake

Here is a great shake recipe that will surely make you feel energetic after your hectic workout training session:

Recipe: Mix a single banana (medium sized and sliced) with a tablespoon of your favorite peanut butter and with a single cup of chocolate milk (this should be low in its fat content). Combine it with ice and enjoy.

The Banana-rama

If you enjoy eating bananas and want to make it a part of your dietary routine, this recipe is probably as simple as it can get to give you a quality workout food.

Recipe: Go for a mid-sliced banana with a single cup of milk, but make sure the dairy item is low in fat.

The Protein Bar

If you crave for a quick-to-eat diet that you can buy from a store, go for a well-known protein bar. But while doing so, you need to make sure you check the sugar content of the bar. For starters, it will be best if you opt for an item that features fewer than ten grams in sugar and in between ten to thirty grams in that all-essential protein. Also, try to opt for a bar that features fewer amounts of those contents/ingredients whose names are difficult to spell. And if you are still unsure as to which bar to opt for, feel free to ask any health professional or a gym expert about it. Chances are that you will get more recommendations than your expectations.

Cereal and Milk

Great many health or nutrition experts recommend the consumption of the right cereal to health-conscious individuals. Therefore, if you are opting for a healthy diet yourself, never rule it out from your menu. You can mix a cup of cereal with milk – in which the former should be whole-grain and the later be low-fat – for your dietary consumption. All of this will be simple and also easy to make.

Chocolate Milk

If you prefer consuming extra dosage of protein and carbs then go for chocolate milk. But while doing so, just make sure that the item is low in fat. The market is full of chocolate milk items. Therefore it is a must for you to be very selective and pick the right item.

All in all, with the addition of the right food items in your workout plan – either before performing workout or after it – you will certainly make the most out of your routine. Also, make sure that you avoid eating street food. And if you are still unsure as to which food item to opt for, never hesitate in consulting a professional for advice.

Creating a Clean Surface

Creating a Clean Surface

Some food professionals need to work on a clean surface.

I am no different. Most cooking preparations, such as the slicing and dicing of vegetables, and the cubing of meat cuts are done on rough board surfaces. But when artistic experimentation and a little more creative finesse is required during the creation of a new recipe, it is better to work on a smooth, clean surface. The reasons for this are aesthetic and practical.

Creating the best surface

A practiced culinary artist needs a clear surface on which she can center all her artistic thoughts and make accurate measurements. Recently, I decided to experiment with Japanese culinary art in accordance with my mother’s heritage. I enjoy ancient traditions. Precision and hygiene are part and parcel of the ancient art of Japanese cooking. Again, I asked my husband to help me with creating the best surface on which to work.

Finding the wood posed no problems. But we still needed to create a smooth, finished surface. We came across a website dedicated entirely to wood lathes. This was perfect because this wood turning machine could be used to sand the wood to an ideal texture which meant that while the surface was pleasing to touch, I also had measured control over what I was doing on my board.

Pressed for time, we do not have the skills usually required in dedicated carpentry and cabinet making. So, this wood lathe expert proved to be extremely helpful in finding the right tool.

Finding the perfect setting

Jackson is the founder of this website. His motivation for building it initially had to do with the lack of suitable sites catering specifically to this niche product. This spirited dedication has its roots in Jackson’s own creative passions which he brings to life in his workshop. So, apart from knowing that we have something in common, I also know that Jackson’s advice comes with experience and practice.

This site has information on finding the correct settings related to speed, power and ease of use on the wood lathing machine. But because Wood Lathe Report is focused on helping new users and customers find the most appropriate toolkit for their needs, product review guides are extensive and regularly refreshed. Product reviews are supported with helpful instructions on how to use the machines correctly and easy to understand information on how the wood lathe products’ settings work.

It also explains safety features and advises new users on how to use and maintain the equipment safely. The apparatus is a helpful antidote for doing wood work that the layman (and woman) cannot do. While quality assurance is maintained, the wood lathe also supplements the physical effort required to produce the desire finished article.

The desired effect

I am happy to say that our small project has produced the desired effect. I now have a smooth surface on which to master my culinary art. I am also happy to recommend that you visit Jackson’s site to give life to your own home-based projects.

Eating on a Road Trip with Kids

Eating on a Road Trip with Kids

People often ask me what to do when it comes to food when travelling with kids. They don’t want to give them something unhealthy, but don’t want to stop for wholesome meals. So, in this post, I’ll write a bit about eating while on a long road trip with children.

Why Pack a Meal When on the Road

Most people don’t have the time to stop for meals when travelling, and it might be better that way, since most roadside restaurants don’t really serve good food. Most of the food you can find is fast food, which is not really healthy, or good for car rides. Packing your own meals is more healthy and overall better. It’s also more cost-effective. Roadside places tend to have high prices, since people have less choice than in a town, and taking your own food with you can be really cheap, especially if you plan it well.

But, one of the most important pros of packing your own meal is the flexibility it provides. This is especially true if you’re travelling with more than one kid. That way, your kids can eat whenever they want, without you having to stop each time one of them is hungry. It will also preoccupy your little ones, so they’ll be quieter during the ride!

Things to Bear in Mind

One of the most important things to think about when preparing road trip food is whether the food is car safe. If you have a toddler strapped into a quality convertible car seat, you can’t give them anything they can choke on such as grapes or popcorn. Liquids are generally fine, as well as liquid foods – the worst thing that can happen is that they spill some of it.

When packing the food, it’s a good idea to pack it in convenient smaller lunchboxes. That way you won’t have to dig through a lot of stuff before getting to the item you want to eat. It’s also a great for teaching older children responsibility for their food.

Healthy Road Trip Food Ideas

Here are some interesting ideas for healthy road trip snacks which are easy to make and will be enjoyable for the kids:

  • Peanut butter and apple slices

Cut up a bunch of apples before heading out and drizzle them with lemon juice to keep them fresh. When you want to eat, just take the apples out and smear peanut butter on them – healthy and appetizing!

  • Salads

When packing salads, make sure you make them filling – egg salads or potato salads are a great idea for a healthy lunch or dinner in the car.

  • Grilled chicken

Grilled chicken is appetizing and extremely easy to package and eat. It doesn’t lose its taste when you leave it in the box for a few hours, and most children love chicken so they will be looking forward to the meal

  • Sliced cheese

If you want to bring a snack which will be filling, just slice up some cheese, put it in a vacuum sealing box, and you’re ready to go!

Great Ways To Burn Off Those Calories in the Winter

Great Ways To Burn Off Those Calories in the Winter

If you’re on my page, that probably means that you love food! And if you love food as much as I do, you sometimes probably eat too much of that delicious dessert, or stuff yourself during the holidays. During my long career as a food enthusiast, I have simply had to find ways to keep fit, otherwise I would balloon up!

If you ever find yourself in this situation, especially during the holidays, here are some great ways to get rid of those extra calories through fun and adventurous activities!

  1. Aerobics

One thing to try this winter is aerobics. Although it sounds like an activity only women and old people do, aerobics is actually great for anyone who wants to lose some weight and get in shape. Work those thigh muscles and arms, and keep your heart healthy. Aerobics is perfect for those who want a good ratio of muscle-building exercises and cardio workouts.

  1. Skiing

I really got into skiing last year, and I don’t plan on stopping anytime soon. The fresh air works wonders for your lungs, and it’s an easy way to burn off calories by simply having fun and racing down those slopes. Although skiing is generally thought to be an expensive sport, I was surprised at how cheaply you can buy decent equipment for it. Just look at this site and see for yourself.

  1. Snowboarding

While I went for skiing, my husband thought it would be cooler if he took up snowboarding! When it comes to burning off calories, skiing and snowboarding are basically the same, and you can also get some nice reviews for snowboarding equipment at WinterNinja. I was sceptical at first, but he really did end up losing quite some weight and he had fun doing it. He also gained some impressive muscle strength in his legs.

  1. Cross-country skiing

Cross-country skiing looks like running with skis, and although it doesn’t look demanding, I tried it once and it was absolutely exhausting. I read later that a single hour of this type of skiing costs you approximately 800-1000 calories. And that’s the same as jogging for more than 3 hours! Although I didn’t find it really enticing, I have to admit that the nature you can see while doing it is really amazing and I do understand the allure. It’s definitely worth trying!

  1. Walking

Yes, it can be as simple as walking! It doesn’t matter whether you’re walking through a snowy forest or a city, walking during winter inherently burns off more calories because your body needs more to stay warm. If you just need to lose a few pounds, walking is a great way to go. This activity is also amazing for older people and people who have health problems such as a bad heart of weak knees. Walking is relatively easy and doesn’t put a lot of strain on the body, and it can be really interesting and exciting if you have good company. So put on some decent shoes and get to it!

Mastering Proper Table Manners

Mastering Proper Table Manners

When we first met, my husband was such a slob at the table – he had absolutely no table manners! Today, you can easily call him a gentleman, and I believe that I’m the one to blame (or thank!) for this change. Well, he was determined and took my advice, so some credit goes to him too. If you want to learn about proper table manners (at least in this part of the world) here are a few awesome rules to live, or eat, by.

  1. Napkins

When having an informal meal with friends or family, you should put the napkin in your lap as soon as you sit down at the table. At more formal events, you should wait for your cue from the host or hostess. When the hostess unfolds and puts her napkin in her lap, you should do it too.

  1. The food

At both informal and formal events, you should wait for the host to start handling the food before you dig in. No one likes the person who takes the bowl of food and starts slamming it on their table before the host even sat down! My husband used to do that a lot, but thankfully, now he’s completely over it.

  1. Starting the meal

For heaven’s sake, don’t start digging in before anyone else has even got the chance to put the food on their plates. It’s common courtesy to wait until everyone has their food on the plate before saying bon apetit and starting eating.

  1. Posture

Don’t slouch over the table like a slob! My husband had real problems with this and in the end he had to wear a posture brace that we found at Well, he had real problems with his posture already. But especially for those of you who aren’t slouching in your daily lives, it’s imperative to sit up straight and keep your elbows of the table during the entire meal!

  1. Utensils

The fork should be held with your left hand and the knife in your right. When cutting, you should place your index finger along the top of the knife blade and make elegant cutting moves. Then put the food in your mouth with the fork – not with the knife as my husband used to do! If you’re not using the knife, leave it on the table.

  1. Passing food

When you’re passing bowls or plates of food, you should always pass to your right, unlest the host makes the first pass to the left – then pass on to the left to avoid confusion. Don’t give plates to a random person at the table because this always leaves someone who didn’t even touch a particular dish!

  1. The end of the meal

If you’re at a formal dinner, there will be staff to remove the dishes and utensils. If not, it’s up to the host to clear the table, although it’s always nice if you offer to help. The host should, of course, decline the offer, but it’s still polite to ask.

Why Growing Your Own Food Is Awesome

Why Growing Your Own Food Is Awesome

You all know how much I love food, and you’re probably aware of some reasons why food is important and how it affects us. But do you know what kind of benefits you can get from growing it by yourself? I started doubting this the last couple of times when I talked to some of my friends about this. Although it seems pretty straight-forward to me, they just couldn’t, or wouldn’t, understand what I was trying to say. This is why I’ve decided to introduce my readers to some of the greatest benefits of growing organic food. I hope you enjoy reading them!

Growing your own food lets you choose what you’ll eat

This is probably the biggest benefit that you’ll get from it during your own lifetime. When you grow your own food, you’re the one deciding what you’ll eat, as well as the one in control of how the food is going to be treated and processed. Just think of all the things that are listed as ingredients on the packages of food you usually buy, and try to realize how much you don’t know about them. So wouldn’t it be great if you knew what you were eating all the time?

It makes the food you eat tastier

having a food garden at home will prove to be beneficial longtermkThis is something my friends simply refused to believe. It’s probably because organic food is expensive and they haven’t tried much of it. But it’s true. For example, I have an apple tree that requires some care. I need to test the soil every now and then, and make sure it gets enough water. I even have to prune it, which would be a difficult task if I didn’t have a quality pole saw, a gadget that allows you to cut the branches without much effort. But it pays off, because when I make an apple pie with the apples I picked from my own tree, the taste is divine! It makes a world of difference!

It saves money in the long run

Yes, you’ll need to invest in your garden if you want things to grow in it. That’s the main argument people use when they start talking against growing your own food. But once your fruit and vegetables start growing, believe me, the cost becomes so low that you’ll definitely notice the difference.

It also saves energy

Factories that are in the business of producing food have become quite large, and thus spend a lot of energy. Growing your own food, on the other hand, is something that can be done with minimum waste. Apart from saving energy, keeping your own garden will make you want to use everything that can be used, and in that way reduce the amount of biological waste.

It protects the Earth

In the long run, this way of living is what significantly reduces the amount of damage we do to our own planet, and isn’t that something we should be striving towards? So if you think ecology is important, the best way to contribute is by growing your own food.

Mothers & Their Food

Mothers & Their Food

It’s said that when the world was created God was busy with the expansion of the universe. He was too busy looking after different projects that he had in hand.  He had to supervise the big bang and also had to relocate the different landmasses after Pangaea was fragmented. So to take care of the well being of the lives He had started creating He made mothers. Since then, from the unicellular bacteria to the highly advanced intellectual species of Homo sapiens, none can live without the one sole thing, a mother.

Like mothers their foods are too adorable and come in a wide variety of options. No matter how much tired she is a mother is always ready to walk that extra mile to cook for you your favorite dish and that too with all her heart that every time tastes much better that it was last time. How can one do that?

Cooking comes as an in built function in mothers. It’s like those previously installed applications in your smart phones and gadgets that make you save the effort of finding them on the net and downloading them and installing them, and thus make our lives easier. Mothers love cooking. It is like their holy grail is hidden somewhere in the kitchen and they have discovered it. They would not just leave that place.

Food cooked by mothers seems to have some magic in them. It is more like a potion than just home cooked same old recipe that can cure all that is touched by evil in the world and beyond. Simple lemonade by your mom can relief you from the long hours when you were out in the sun hovering with your newly acquired long board featured at LongBoardMafia. Or a pie or a pudding can be a real treat for you and a big bribe for your pals when you want to be the captain of the soccer team. It just works fine with them all.

Home cooked food is also making good business in different parts of the world, and this is no joke as it is turning to be a very profitable venture. Take for instance, in India during lunch hours instead of going to the nearest food stations office goers prefer home cooked food and the business is flourishing. The people in the business are stressing that their product is made the way the mothers cook for you at home. And this is actually gaining many takers, especially those who travel and settle away from their homes for their job.

It is a mystery how one single person can look after all that is needed to be done at home, and that too in such an organized fashion. Though technology has advanced to give us some fabulous time saving appliances, yet it’s a hat off to the remarkable skill of the mothers in managing the one toughest organization in the world, or rather the whole universe, that is a family.

Dessert Worth the Cavities

Dessert Worth the Cavities

Tables around the world that have hosted food on them cannot deny one fact and that is they are incomplete without desserts. Be it your home, or restaurant or any party you attend one thing that we all look for after food is, what they have to sweeten your taste buds. From kids to grandparents all alike, love to indulge them on the dessert that is served. So we bring to you a list of countries and the dessert that they are famous for.


Chocolate soufflé is an honored dessert originated in France. It is a baked cake with a gooey texture chocolate core and has a reputation for being absolutely tedious to execute, as it needs to be dished out as soon as it is prepared. It is often served with Grand Marnier which is a citrusy orange liqueur.

United States

Apple pie is denoted as the exemplary American dessert, which serves as the culinary symbol of the nation’s pride. It is a pastry pie crust which has an apple filling and is most often seasoned with cinnamon and nutmeg.


Gelato is quite different from ice cream in terms of flavor and texture. The main ingredient that goes into making this frozen dessert is milk, giving the dish a considerably lower fat content.


Indians have a sweeter tooth compared to the people from the rest part of the world.. This is one vital reason why many of the Indians have a large tummy that looks more like a punching bag. Well, with all those calories into one’s body, one should check to reduce a few pounds. Its dessert recipes range from Gulab Jamuns to Jalebis and Barfis to Rasogollas. Most of the recipes are milk based.


Basbousa is a street food from Egypt that is basically a slightly sweet semolina cake which is most often garnished with lime curd, berries and whipped cream.


Baklava is a Turkish delicacy which is in the form of a pastry consisting of nuts, fruits, and sometimes rice. Inspired from an ancient Assyrian dessert they come in different flavors.


Waffles are the prime dessert originating in Belgium which follows a recipe from the Medieval Times. In Belgium, waffles are mainly of two types: the Brussels waffles and the Liege waffles.


Tangyuan are colorful rice balls stuffed at the core with black sesame, red bean pastes and peanut. They are traditionally served in hot broth of rock sugar and ginger.


Flan is a Spanish egg custard garnished with caramel sauce. It is also known as crème caramel and has a gel like texture. It is available in a variety of flavors, like honey, crushed almonds, lemon zest, and orange flavoring.


Galaktoboureko is custard like pie with a phyllo dough pastry shell often smoothened in cinnamon, lemon and sugar syrup.


Wienerbrod, known in America as Danish is the National pastry of Denmark. The name of the dessert translates to “Viennese bread”.


Apple Strudel is a layered type of pastry which is coated in powdered or caramelized sugar and also has fillings.

To conclude, its one truth that people around the world just love sweets.

Let’s light things up

Let’s light things up

Let’s light things up a bit. I’m thinking here of brightening up my kitchen a little bit more. I’m looking to create the perfect ambience for different occasions, and to do that right, lights or lighting tends to either be focal or play a very important supporting role in decorative and essential lighting effects. More importantly, I’m looking at creating a stronger light in my kitchen but without the glare. This will allow me to work with aplomb at any time of the day.

More light to work in

Morning, noon and night are all synonymous with three festive occasions of my day (I hope it’s still the case in yours); breakfast, lunch and supper. And unless I’m not venturing off somewhere on another food expedition or giving talks on how to prepare feasts for festive occasions, I’m here in my kitchen making something a little bit different and doing things differently too. It goes without saying that the different times of the day bring about fresh lighting aspects that can inspire the chef in you.

But the master chef in me needs more light to work in. In my search for new ways to light the kitchen properly and effectively for the purpose of being able to work with food without any blemishes, I have to admit that I was a little excited when I learned from Light Bar Report that these heavy duty LED lights and light bars I had been reading about for some time before did not need to be used only on trucks and heavy, long-distance, open-road and dirt road vehicles. They can also be used as stationary lighting objects.

Lighting things up

I subsequently discovered that a new set of LED lights will be ideal for my home economics base camp. I will be talking to technicians about putting in the correct fittings in the kitchen ceiling (our ceilings are high, so here we are a bit fortunate where this exercise is concerned) and then having another look at the reviews on LED light bars and other websites to make an informed but utterly original choice. Is this possible? I think it is. Well, we’ll only really know once we try.

And what are we trying to do here? Basically install LED lights into the kitchen ceiling. But now, I have a confession to make. Most hard-working creatives like to let their hair out a bit, relax and have some fun. While I was pondering what to do outside on the patio located within our entertainment area, I read that light bars were suitable for lighting an entire outdoor area. Already in use for such purposes, the light bars are also functional as part of the home or business security features, whether on the fixed property or the purpose-driven vehicles.

For now though, I’ll have to curb my enthusiasm, if you will. There’s still much work to be done before we can head off into our yard and light things up our way.

Crossing Culinary Art With Hunting Tradition

Crossing Culinary Art With Hunting Tradition

Culinary experts are often frustrated by the quality of the meat products they find in their stores. I rely on specialty butchers and delicatessens which are consistent with their selection of organically produced meat. I know that it tastes a lot better, but I also know that it is more expensive than most supermarket fare. It was not a novel idea but my husband and I had been thinking about it for a while. Recently we decided to combine our love for nature with my own passion for cooking.

Responsible hunting

We asked ourselves over and over again; what would it be like to hunt our own food, just like our forefathers did for centuries. What would it take to hunt responsibly without harming our natural environment and without making a grossly negative impact on the species that we had in mind? Thankfully, as beginners, our targets would be small and modest. We also decided that we were not going to comply with the American tradition of owning at least one firearm.

Deep down, while we still appreciate the need to hunt for food, we are pacifists at heart. We had no desire to disturb our natural surroundings with the unfair advantage and loud noises that accompany heavy duty rifles. Hunting for a decent but not too expensive pair of crossbows seemed to make a whole lot of sense. It did not take us long to find what we were looking for. And if you pardon the expression, what we found blew us away.

Arbalist Zone is the perfect place to plan your first hunting expedition. It is rare to find so much attention to detail given in one dedicated website, in this case to the mission and craft of sourcing the most suitable crossbow for beginners and for hunting. In the hunting arena, we will be looking for small animals, such as rabbits, quails and foals. I was already thinking about the perfect rabbit stews, roasted quail with seasoning and succulent venison steaks.

Zoning in on our target

Before we even began looking for our first set of bows, we were able to learn in detail how they work and align these instructions with our hunting needs and what these weapons should be used for. Helping us to make informed choices, Arbalist Zone narrowed our target considerably. It came down to two factors; purpose and convenience. As beginners we did not want to be saddled with heavy duty weapons that would take us months to master anyway.

Also, because we would be hunting small wild-life creatures occasionally, a light-weight mini crossbow was perfect. It was also recommended that as first-time hunters, we consider the recurve crossbow. It requires little or no maintenance, is simple to use and a lot quieter than its larger alternative, the compound crossbow, never mind rifles and sub-machine guns.

Plan well

We have not yet left on our hunting expedition. There is still a bit of planning going on in my kitchen. For now though, our compact crossbow kit has been safely stored away until we leave.

Framing A Strong Surface

Framing A Strong Surface

Food has always been my passion.

Celebrating life through food is part of a long family tradition for me. I responded to my passion and followed my dream. I studied culinary arts for a few years and now I am happy to share my knowledge and experience on everything related to food. Food is also a cultural event. My latest cultural journey took me to the original Italian tradition of creating new, divine pizza recipes.

Framing inspiration

Because hundreds of recipes have already been tried, tested and tasted, this was always going to be a challenge. But, of course, I enjoy this, so I embraced my new project wholesomely. Fortunately, I did not work alone. I wanted to work as authentically as possible so was looking for a rustic, wooden surface on which to knead my dough and prepare fresh, new ingredients.

My loving husband guided me to an ideal site for finding a framing nailer. The reason for sourcing the perfect nailer had to do with framing my thick and heavy new chopping board, made entirely of wood, to my teak wood kitchen table so that it does not slide about and remains fixed to the table.

My husband introduced me to Nolan. He is a friendly, all-American who created a website dedicated to giving life to inspirational ideas and projects, even if it sounds impossible at first. Framing Nailer Report specializes in finding the most appropriate framing nailers for your particular project. Nolan has taken a lot of time and effort in getting to know these products so all the information, advice and product reviews are qualified.

Helping out

This framing nailer professional is extremely helpful and reliable. All our questions were answered clearly in a way that we could understand. For instance, we discovered that having a compact cordless nailer would be convenient for our immediate purpose. Also, we learned that for our small project we would only need a finish nailer. I am already thinking about new ideas for future kitchen projects for which this type of nailer would be perfect.

Because both my husband and I are still fairly new to the idea of do-it-yourself projects within our home, we still needed to learn how to use our framing nailer properly and safely. The contents sidebar on the website’s home page was the perfect place to start. We already knew where to look for the best product reviews. More importantly, we were able to take into account criteria for choosing and buying the right nailer. We also know how to play it safe with our new tools.

For now, I have what I want

My board sticks perfectly to my table and I am making good progress with my new culinary project. My husband will be returning to the framing nailer pro for up to date information on a new nailer to help him with his fresh idea while I get things done in my kitchen.

My First Time as a Food Photography Judge

My First Time as a Food Photography Judge

I’ve recently been invited to sit as a judge in a food photography contest. While I have already sat as a judge in a number of food contests, I haven’t really tried judging in a food photography contest. I guess, the organizers thought that since food presentation is among the criteria in judging food contests, I’d be a good judge. Well, they were right. Things went well and I enjoyed the experience.

The other judges (two professional photographers, a restaurateur, and a well-known food blogger) were very helpful. They gave me few tips on how to judge food photographs. I learned a lot from them which I can use on my future cooking projects.

As a food contest judge, one of the things that initially catches the attention of judges is the food plating; the same is true with food photography. Food presentation is king and this can be achieved through a close collaboration between the chef and the photographer. It’s actually a team approach. I don’t think you can take a sumptuous shot on a lousy dish. It just won’t work.

In one of the entries, the photographer did a wide aerial shot, several feet above the large plate. I guess, the photographer used one of the quadcopters reviewed on this site. The chef and photographer exemplified teamwork on this project. The dish was plated perfectly, maximizing the rich tones of the table and the background, and capitalizing the space. The plate seems to tease the heavenly gods.

I’ve seen some photographers do sketches and drawings which the chef used while arranging the dish. It’s just exciting how vision turns into reality. The dishes varied in colors, shapes, textures and themes. It was a food fest not for the palate but for the eyes.

Simplicity is beauty. It may sound cliché but it applies even to food presentation. I find overly decorated, busy plates distracting rather than appetizing. In one of the plates, the photographer used the Hubsan X4 H107C (check out this site for its review: to take a very simple, yet powerful photograph. The simplicity of the dish makes it a real stand out.

I was looking for a dish that playfully uses the textures, colors, shapes and ingredients of the dish to create a mouth-watering presentation. The plate should not look too busy that it overpowers the function and flavor. Moreover, the lens should capture and highlight the main ingredient while giving equal attention to the ‘support’ ingredients. Garnishes, especially the greens, are very helpful supporting ingredients.

While I may not know the technical rules of photography (such as the lighting, focus, exposure, etc.), I know how good food looks in pictures. I guess, if the picture looks live and appetizing, then the photography is awesome.

Overall, the entire experience was a refreshing and enjoyable one. The only frustrating part is that I don’t really get to taste and eat the food! I just have to settle with my imagination.

5 Top Reasons Why You Need a Vacuum Sealer

5 Top Reasons Why You Need a Vacuum Sealer

Being the foodie that I am, I enjoy trying out all kinds of new kitchen tools and appliances. There are so many incredible things available to us today that I can’t stop admiring the technical progress, which made all of this amazing stuff available to us. Using all these fancy tools makes cooking a delicious meal an easy task, and you can use them not only to make foods but to store them as well.

I recently discovered a truly magical tool that changed my outlook of food storage completely. I am a happy owner of a vacuum sealer now, and I couldn’t be happier. If you don’t know what this tool is, check out to learn all there is to know about various kinds of sealers and where to buy the best one of them.

Once you start using a vacuum sealer, you will wonder how you managed to go without one before. At least, this is what happened to me. I took it upon myself to experiment with this machine as much as possible to discover how many practical uses it actually has. I’m pretty sure I will come up with some more ideas as the time goes by, but I’d like to share what I came up with so far.

  1. Food storage.
    Obviously, this is the first thing that comes to mind as the device is actually designed for this purpose. I use mine to seal away freshly frozen veggies. It works beautifully for anything that is not pureed. I also sometimes seal away leftovers so that I have a quick meal always handy when I don’t actually have the time to cook on weekdays.
    The benefits? When you open up a vacuum-sealed pack of peas, they aren’t a huge frozen block, so you can take as much of the produce as you need and neatly pack away the rest.
  2. Dry canning.
    We all know that buying in bulk is cheaper, but storing dry goods in your pantry for months can be quite a challenge. It won’t be so if you have a vacuum sealer to help you. Be sure to buy one with a jar sealer attachment so that you can safely store dried fruits, spices, or flour in jars.
    Speaking from experience, I can say that storing flour and other powders is much easier if you vacuum seal the item in its original paper storage bag.
  3. Resealing bottles.
    The shelf life of open wine and vinegar bottles isn’t really long, but you can extend it using a vacuum sealer with a special wine stopper attachment. It’s perfect for those who make homemade wine.
  4. Protection from corrosion.
    It’s not only food that can benefit from being sealed this way. You can also use this little handy device to preserve the polishing on your table silver. Just be sure to cover precious cutlery with a piece of cloth before you package it.
  5. Resealing cracker and chip bags.
    Junk food is bad for you, but sometimes it’s so hard to avoid it. And once you open the pack, you just have to finish it as the food will be ruined after you unseal it. A vacuum sealer will solve this problem and keep your crackers and chips crisp and dry in your pantry.