Organize Your Refrigerator

When you think about it, one of the most often used areas in the kitchen is the refrigerator.  So, it makes sense to organize this space just like you would your pantry and cupboards.  You can even go further than that; think about your refrigerator like your clothes closet and use the same organizing techniques you would for scarves, jewelry, gloves, or other small items.  Let's take a look at the basic arrangement and then move into some clever ways to best utilize the space you have.

The Best Basic Arrangement
Start by grouping similar things together, such as lunch items, snack items, fruits, vegetables, dinner items, leftovers, and condiments.  If your refrigerator has adjustable shelving, use this to your advantage and organize your refrigerator to your individual needs.  If you end up with one tall section and only a couple items in it, use stacking bins to take up the rest of the room so the full height and width of the shelf is utilized.

The lowest drawer is typically the coldest part of the refrigerator, making it perfect for storing raw meat.  The drawer will catch any possible drips so cleanup is easy.  Line the bottom of the drawer with paper towels so any leakage can be easily cleaned up and disposed.
Take full advantage of the shelves in the door.  If you're storing a lot of tiny short bottles in big tall spaces, take a look around for alternatives.  In the next section I'll be sharing some ideas for better places to store those little items inside the refrigerator.  But, don't be afraid.  You won't lose any more of those little items in the dark recesses of the back of the refrigerator.

After you get a basic arrangement worked out, it's time to get creative.  These are storage tips that can help you gain room in your refrigerator and keep it organized for the best use.  Let's take a look.

Roll Out Caddy
Donít let those little things get pushed back and become lost in your refrigerator again. The roll out caddy makes it easy to see what you have and makes everything easier to reach.  There are units made specifically for refrigerators, or you can find inexpensive caddies for cabinets that will work just as well.

See Through Plastic Bins
Rather than unloading everything out onto the kitchen floor to find that packet of taco sauce or piece of cheese, keep small items together in clear 'see-thru' bins. This saves time and aggravation because you can see at a glance just what you have.  Even if you must pull the bin out of the refrigerator to take a look, you won't have to dump everything out to find something.

Built In Egg Holder
Most refrigerators come with some sort of built in egg holder, whether a permanent part of the door or a tray that fits in the door shelf.  Go ahead and put the eggs you bought in this holder.  This saves space and helps prevent broken eggs that occur when that carton gets pushed around or something gets set on top of it.  Now that odd place you've been keeping the eggs can be used for a different item.

Lazy Susan
Now that you've pulled all those tiny items out of the door shelves, you need somewhere to put them.  Think about how nice that little turntable thing is in your cupboard with all your spices on it.  Do the exact same thing in your refrigerator.  Put a 'Lazy Susan' in the back section of a space in the refrigerator and set the ketchup, mustard, pickles, and other condiments on it.  Now with one spin you can see everything without digging around.  And, you also have freed up that door space for taller, bulkier items like juice cartons and drink bottles.

Leftovers Storage Area
Designate one shelf just for leftovers and save yourself the frustration of throwing out all your hard work and delicious food.  Use clear bins and you'll easily see everything you have to eat.  This one trick is worth all the other tricks combined when you think about all the times those chicken wings got pushed to the back and forgotten.  Or when you discovered your lovely meatloaf turned green and fuzzy.  Another option is to find food storage containers that fit in a door shelf and designate that as an area to keep leftovers. Whatever works best for you, just as long as you keep them handy and visible.

Organizing your refrigerator will take some time at first.  But, once it's set up, you'll just need to pay it some attention.  Be sure to pull out your leftover bin a couple times a week and review the food you have in there.  Train the family to put the food back in the right places.  It’s much easier to stay on top of it than to let it go and have to redo the whole thing.

Simple Tips to Get More Veggies into Your Family’s Diet

 Most Americans don’t get enough veggies in their diet. It’s not difficult. However, busy lives and unhealthy habits can make it tough. Not to mention the fact that many people just don’t like vegetables. Or at least they don’t think they do. Here are some simple tips to get more vegetables in your family’s diet.

#1 Make them available between meals. Many moms have found that simply creating a veggie and dip tray and setting it out results in a delightful surprise. Kids swarm the table. They gobble up the vegetables and mom is happy. What causes this phenomenon when kids won’t eat vegetables at meal time? There are two theories:

You can really amplify the nutritional value and offer a flavorful pureed vegetable or bean dip as a dip. Good old-fashioned ranch dressing is an option too.

Here are two dips to try:


Honey Mustard dip
Honey Mustard Dip            
Sesame Miso Sweet Potato Dip
   Sesame Miso Sweet Potato  Dip

The second theory is that if mom and dad aren’t forcing the kids to eat the vegetables, as they might at mealtime, then the veggies are more appealing. If it’s offered as a snack without any expectations then kids dive right in.

 #2 Remember that it takes time to like a food. Experts tell us that it takes three to seven tastes for a person to decide if they like a food. That means you have to serve Brussels sprouts to your kids seven times and let them taste the veggies before they decide. Often a no-pressure attitude works best. Simply ask your kid to try the new veggie. They don’t have to eat a full serving. When kids are allowed to develop their own taste, they’re more likely to like a vegetable than if they’re forced to eat them.


Marinated Grilled Vegetables

#3 Make it tasty. Let’s face it - some vegetables don’t taste very good. However, there are things you can do to make them tasty. For example, you may not like green beans steamed, but if they’re sautéed with a few almonds they taste amazing. When it comes to eating vegetables, don’t be afraid to doctor them a bit. Use spices, marinades and herbs. Use a bit of healthy fat like olive oil to add flavor. Add nuts. Add cheese sauces sometimes too. And offer dips and dressings when the vegetables are raw or in salad form.


Vegetable Tacos

Getting your family to eat more veggies may take some advanced planning. Make sure they’re offered several times a day and in several forms. Give your child, and yourself, time to decide if you like a vegetable. Go ahead and be sneaky with the veggies sometimes too. When it comes to your family’s health, vegetables matter.

Kitchen Seasonings: A Quick World Tour

Kitchen Seasonings: A Quick World Tour

Herbs, spices and other seasonings are a natural and healthy way to add a lot of flavor to your recipes without adding a lot of extra calories. With a little practice, you can create an endless variety of delicious recipes, such as Mediterranean-inspired favorites bursting with the fresh flavors of lemon, garlic and rosemary and spicy Mexican dishes featuring cilantro, cumin and chili powder.

Of course, your options won’t end there. A wide range of herbs, spices and seasonings are used throughout the world to make food taste better, and in some cases, last longer. Over time, certain flavors have come to represent the culinary identity of the areas where they originated. In large part, the seasonings you choose will define the direction of your own culinary development, as well.

 With a little creativity, you can put a fresh spin on some of your favorite tried-and-true recipes by simply swapping out the herbs, spices and seasonings you use. For example, if you add fresh or dried basil or oregano to diced tomatoes, chopped onion and finely minced garlic, you have the makings of a wonderful red Italian pasta sauce. On the other hand, if you replace the basil and oregano with cilantro and lime juice, those same ingredients become the foundation for a fabulous homemade salsa recipe.

 To help inspire you, the following chart shows some of the most popular culinary ingredients based on geographic region.

 Most Popular Kitchen Seasonings from Around the World



Popular Herbs, Spices & Seasonings


basil, oregano, marjoram, rosemary, parsley


thyme, French tarragon, rosemary, basil, sage, mint, marjoram


dill, lemon, oregano, fennel


saffron, smoked and regular paprika, rosemary, thyme


mustard, rye, caraway seeds, borage


cilantro, chili powder, cumin, Mexican oregano


curry powder, coriander, cumin, turmeric


five-spice powder, star anise, fennel seed, cloves, cinnamon, ginger


Thai basil, cumin, turmeric, lemon grass, cinnamon

Of course, this chart is far from comprehensive, but it can serve as a good reference point for assembling your own collection of must-have herbs, spices and seasonings.

Keep in mind, some herbs, spices and seasonings, such as salt, black pepper, onions and garlic, have an almost universal appeal that isn’t limited by geographic borders. Chances are you will notice those items popping up in recipes from all over the world. As a result, you may want to keep an adequate supply of these basic ingredients in your own pantry or spice rack.

You will also see a lot of crossover among dishes from countries that border one another. For example, French, Italian, Greek and Spanish dishes often feature many of the same herbs, such as basil, rosemary, oregano and thyme. Of course, this isn’t surprising when you consider how these populations interacted with and melded together over the course of history. Depending on your personal tastes and cooking habits, these ingredients may be good to keep on hand, as well.


 While assembling your own collection of herbs, spices and seasonings from around the world, remember you can save money by growing your own. Fresh herbs are super easy to grow from seed or from cuttings in your own garden and many can be brought indoors for year-round enjoyment. However, if growing fresh herbs isn’t your thing, many popular fresh and dried varieties are readily available. Dried herbs can be a great alternative to fresh, but take note of expiration dates and suggested storage methods. Dried herbs, spices and seasonings can be quite expensive, so buy smaller amounts at one time if you won’t be using them often.




National Poultry Day

March 19th is National Poultry Day

To clebrate here are several recipes for you to incorporate into your at home cooking cycle that offers a mix of baking, roasting, grilling, and braising.
Can you name the top three types of poultry consumed in the United States?
Visit our Facebook page for the answers!

Roasted Lemon Chicken
Yield: 2 Servings

2 bone-in chicken breast halves, skin removed
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
1/2 teaspoon grated lemon peel
1 garlic clove, minced
1/4 cup fresh rye or whole wheat bread crumbs*
1/2 teaspoon paprika, preferably smoked
1. Heat oven to 400°F. Place chicken on small foil-lined rimmed baking sheet. Combine mustard, lemon peel and garlic; spread over top of chicken. Pat bread crumbs over mustard mixture; sprinkle with paprika.
2. Bake 25 to 35 minutes or until chicken is no longer pink in center.
TIP *To make fresh bread crumbs, tear day-old bread into pieces; place in food processor. Pulse 30 to 60 seconds or until coarse crumbs form. One bread slice yields about 3/4 cup crumbs.

Roasting the chicken at a high temperature keeps it moist and juicy while allowing the bread crumb coating to crisp and brown.
PER SERVING: 175 calories, 4.5 g total fat (1 g saturated fat), 28 g protein, 3.5 g carbohydrate, 75 mg cholesterol, 220 mg sodium, 1 g fiber

Turkey Osso Bucco
Turkey Osso Bucco 
Turkey has lots a flavor and great texture. Turkey thighs braised with vegetables and herbs makes this dish
worth every moment of waiting for as its aromas tease you.

Pri Pri Wings
Pri Pri Chicken Wings
With spring just hours away there is no excuse not to start grilling. Try these wings as an appetizer or the main event.
These wings would go great with a broccoli slaw.

Nutty Coconut Chicken
Nutty Coconut Chicken  

This Chicken dish is saturated in sweet coconut, almond and walnut flavor.
Served on a bed of vegetable basmati rice pilaf or tossed into a apple spinach salad, the crunch of this pan-fried chicken
will add a heavenly texture.

What do you know about Bell Peppers?

Not only are bell peppers delicious to eat and beautiful to look at, but they are also packed with nutritional benefits. All bell peppers are high in vitamin C with the red pepper having more than twice as much as the green pepper. The bell pepper is also a wonderful source of vitamin A, vitamin B, antioxidants and carotenoids.
The bell pepper, also known as sweet pepper or capsicum, is of the species Capsicum annuum and native to Mexico, Central America and northern South America. Bell peppers are botanically fruits, but in culinary contexts they are usually considered to be vegetables.

Bell peppers can be bought year-round, but they are most abundant and tasty during the months of August and September. Colors range from the burgeoning colors of green to yellow, and ripen to the sweeter-tasting colors of red, orange, and sometimes purple and brown, depending on the variety.
Picking a good pepper is easy: they should have a smooth and tight skin (no wrinkles, or soft or bruised spots), plus bright color, and feel firm and solid. A look at the stem is another place to peek: it should appear fresh, green, and not dry or desiccated.
Don’t wash a pepper until use: ideally store unwashed peppers in a cool place covered with a kitchen towel, or second best is in the vegetable compartment in your refrigerator (but not in plastic, which will create excess moisture). Some even freeze them, either whole, or cleaned, deseeded, and chopped

Peppers can be eaten raw or cooked. If eating it raw, wash it first, then core it (cut around the stem with a paring knife). Cut the pepper in half lengthwise and then remove any seeds and the white core/ribs—you can try shaking the seeds into the garbage. Don’t be tempted to use water to remove the seeds: it will just waterlog it. The pepper is then ready to be cut into strips, chopped, or diced. For those want to stuff a pepper, cut it horizontally instead of cutting it lengthwise then remove the seeds and core. One precaution: even though peppers are typically sweet, be sure to wash your hands well when all is said and done—don’t touch your eyes!

Peppers are also delicious roasted. They can be grilled with tongs over a gas burner until blistered and the skin starts to blacken, or in the broiler: simply put cut pepper halves on a cookie sheet and roast. The best way to peel the skin is to then place the peppers in a bowl covered with plastic wrap, or in a paper bag. Steam for about 15 minutes, and then peel the skin off with your fingers (or a knife if they’re too hot).
Peppers can also be stuffed, or sautéed—peppers are a delicious addition to a stir-fry. Peppers also pair well with meat, like a classic Italian sausage and peppers dish, or with steak. Some like to puree peppers into dips, like hummus, or into soups

Here are a few recipes to try from
Poor Man's Caviar
Black-eyed peas, scallions, and both red and green peppers combine in a salad that's equally delicious spread on bread or spooned from bowl.

Baked Chicken with Peppers
This vibrant baked chicken and peppers dish is as simple as it is classic.

Peppers in Tomato Sauce
Serve these preserved peppers over pasta or chicken for a bright meal.

Pesto Calabrese
This Southern Italian pesto gets its hue from tomatoes and red bell peppers.

Green Pepper Butter
Minced roasted green pepper adds irresistible flavor to this savory compound butter.

Muhammara (Roasted Red Pepper, Walnut and Pomegranate Molasses Dip)
This Middle Eastern dip is one part sweet, one part tangy, and one part spicy; it's the perfect combination for slathering on sandwiches or serving with homemade pita chips.

Sweet Pepper Salad
Roasted red and green peppers get a kick from sugar and vinegar -- great served with grilled meats.

Eggplant Stuffed Peppers
Bell peppers are blistered over a flame before being stuffed with eggplant, breadcrumbs, and anchovies.

photo credit: wallyg via photo pin cc

Why we love washing produce and you should too!

Are Farm fresh fruits and vegetables clean, or hygienic еnоugh for consumption without washing? Of course the answer should be no. Especially when we consider by the time thеѕе commodities reach us, thеу have bееn handled by several people. For example, right from picking, storing, transporting, displaying, еtс. thеѕе fruits and vegetables have bееn touched by various hands.  The interchange of various hands increases the chances of spreading food borne illness. Also, if the produce is from a non-organic farm we have to consider pesticides, wax and resin.

Because fruit and vegetables are touched by many and the possibly coated with wax, resin or have been sprayed with it is important to wash them before cooking. Water along is not good enough. There are several Produce sprays available.  There are other options. Check out these simple and effective ways to clean your produce.

Vinegar contains acetic acid, whісh kills bacteria and discards pesticide residues. Additionally, vinegar іѕ not harmful to the body in any way. To prepare thіѕ wash, add 1-2 tablespoons of salt and ½ cup of vinegar with 2 cups of water.
You саn clean fruits or vegetables with thіѕ solution by soaking or as a spray. For better results, soak the fruits and vegetable for 10 minutes in the vinegar solution and then rinse it with water.
Instead of the salt, you саn add lemon juice and baking soda to the vinegar and water. Cleaning with vinegar on а regular basis will dеfіnіtеlу prevent contaminants from entering уоur body.

Grapefruit Seed Extract
Another natural wash that саn be prepared іѕ by using citrus seed extract. Alѕо called grapefruit seed extract, thіѕ extract іѕ the liquid produced from the membrane, pulp and seeds of grapefruit. 

Add аbоut 20 drops of grapefruit seed extract to 32 oz. of water. Shake or stir well and spray it on the fruits and veggies. You саn аlѕо place а stopper in the sink and fill the sink halfway with water. Add 20 drops of thіѕ extract and drop the fruits and veggies into the sink. Allow them to soak for 10 minutes and then rinse thоrоughlу with water.

Lugol's Iodine
We never thought our food in the United States could be so filthy it required iodine treatment. But it is by far the most efficient “sterilizer” no matter what the level of filth. When animal refuse is used as fertilizer or produce is grown in distant countries where different diseases abound, one can find safety with iodine.

Fill a sink or a bowl with a measured amount of water. Add one drop Lugol’s per quart (or liter) of water. Dip lettuce, spinach and any other produce so everything is well wetted for one minute or more. Rinsing is optional. (Eating traces of iodine is not harmful, but iodine is powerful so do not add it directly to the food on your plate or your beverages; it would destroy some food value and eventually become toxic.) Do not save the water for later use-it will lose its potency. If you wash so many vegetables that you can no longer see the color of the iodine it has lost its effectiveness. Add another drop.

Hydrogen Peroxide
Mix 3% hydrogen peroxide with 1 tablespoon of natural soap. Spray thіѕ solution on fruits and vegetables. The solution foams out and contains contaminants ѕuсh аѕ bacteria, еtс. that get killed by the hydrogen peroxide.

Ozonated Water
With an economical ozone machine, уоu саn ozonate the water and uѕе it аѕ а solution to wash edible items. Ozone kills contaminants deposited on the fruits and vegetables. Simply, lodge the ozone water bubbler in the water bowl for аbоut 7 - 8 minutes and then rinse fruits and vegetables with thіѕ ozone water.

Remember, mеrеlу washing fruits and veggies with water іѕ not sufficient. You never know whісh kind of contaminants are resting on the fruits and vegetables уоu buy from the grocery store. So it’s always better to uѕе thеѕе solutions to ensure that what уоu are eating іѕ clean.

Four Food Remedies for Dry Skin

Potatoes has been used as a remedy for a wide array of ailments from skin disorders to constipation to inflammation, and even cancer. This vegetable is an excellent source of fiber, vitamin A, vitamin B, vitamin C, carbohydrates, potassium, phosphorus, calcium, manganese, and iron among others.

Grate one or two small potatoes and soak them in olive oil for 20 minutes. Rub the mixture on your dry hands for several minutes, then rinse your hands to clean them of the potatoes.

Olive oil contains omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids, which keeps your skin soft and smooth to the touch, help diminish wrinkles, make skin look younger and help reduce the appearance of scars. 

Extra-virgin unrefined unprocessed olive oil has lots of vitamin E that is a famous antioxidant. It prevents oxidation in skin cells so, as a result, skin looks much younger and less wrinkles appear in the skin surface.
Dab a thin layer of olive oil all over your dry skin. And massage it in. This works well as a moisturizer.

Honey, made by the alchemy of bees collecting nectar, pollen, and resins from flowers can help moisturize, fight aging, and fight bacteria. Plus, it’s loaded with nutrients, antioxidants, and healing compounds. Choose raw honey, which hasn't been heat-treated or pasteurized; it contains more active phytonutrient antioxidants and enzymes for enhanced benefits.

Honey can nourish, cleanse, and hydrate skin. Use to soften chapped cracked lips. Apply a little honey to your dry lips in the evening before bed and wake up to softer lips. Honey also help sooth cracked heels and rough elbows. Smooth over these areas let sit 15 20 minutes before rinsing away.

Bananas are a healthy source of beauty-boosting vitamins A, B, C and E and minerals such as iron, zinc and potassium. They are also abundant with amino acids and antioxidants that provide nutrients to your skin and hair.

For Dry skin: Mash a banana with a fork and apply a thick coat on the affected areas. Leave on for 15- 20 minutes, then wash off with warm water and then follow with a cold splash of water to lock in moisture.

The Four Natural Enemies of Olive Oil

A high-quality extra virgin olive oil is a must-have staple in many kitchens, partly because its delicious flavor and versatile nature allow it to be used in countless ways. For starters, extra virgin olive oil is perfect in homemade salad dressings, on roasted vegetables and as a key ingredient in a wide range of recipes.

 In addition to tasting great, olive oil is also good for you. Naturally low in saturated fat, it is a healthy alternative to butter, margarine and many other oils. Versatility, great taste and a healthy profile make it easy to see why many cooks and chefs always have a bottle close at hand.

What many people do not realize about olive oil, however, is that it is actually a perishable fruit juice with some finicky preferences. This mean proper care and precautions must be taken in order to keep your olive tasting and smelling the way it should.

The Four Natural Enemies of Olive Oil

  1. Time. Because it is a perishable fruit juice, olive does not have an unlimited shelf life. Try to choose bottles with a clearly marked “harvest date” and make sure that date occurred within the last 18 months to 2 years. It is also recommended that you only buy as much olive oil as you can use within 15 – 30 days of opening. 
  2. Temperature. Heat will cause olive oil to degrade quickly. Therefore, do not store your olive oil near your oven or cooktop because the higher ambient heat in those areas will cause it to break down faster.
  3. Oxygen. Like a fine wine, exposure to oxygen for any length of time will cause your olive oil to turn rancid. To prevent this, store your olive oil in an airtight container with the lid securely fasten whenever it is not in use. 
  4. Light. Exposure to light will also cause olive oil to degrade more quickly. Avoid storing your olive in clear bottles or out on your counter tops. Dark green bottles are the best for blocking out sunlight, but other dark bottles will also work. Storing bottles inside a cabinet when not in use can also prolong the life of your olive oil. A cool, dark place is your best bet to prolong the life of your oil.

Avoiding the four natural enemies of olive oil will keep it fresh and full of flavor for a longer period of time. With a little bit of effort, you can preserve the delicious natural flavors of your quality olive oils.


Grapefruit, Love them or not

Nutrients, Yes
Grapefruits are sodium and cholesterol free. They are full of vitamin C, with 61 percent of RDA in just one half. Pink grapefruit stand out from citrus crowd with high vitamin A (46 percent of RDA in half) and Lycopene antioxidants for eyes, skin and hearth health. Studies reveal a red grapefruit a day can lower LDL (bad) cholesterol by 15.5 percent and triglycerides by 27 percent.

Don’t mix with medication
Grapefruit interferes with 85 drugs, including certain antihistamines (for allergies and colds), Cholesterol lowering statins and antidepressants. A compound in grapefruit intersects with the metabolism of these drugs, making them either less potent or so concentrated they become toxic.
Before you have a glass of grapefruit juice with breakfast check with your doctor or pharmacist and read the about inserts for your medication carefully.

Can you lose the weight eating Grapefruit?
Full of quick weight loss promises, the grapefruit diet has been disproved, but the core benefits check out: Because grapefruit is 90 percent water and high in fiber. It can help curb appetites. Research shows that people who eat half a grapefruit before meals have lost more weight that those that didn’t.

Select the best Grapefruit  
Choose fruit that has thin, smooth, blemish free skin.  

The grapefruit should be heavy for its size.
The redder the flesh the sweeter the taste and the greater the lycopene and antioxidant linked to lower risk of breast cancer and heart disease.
Store at room temperature one week or refrigerator for 2-3 weeks.

February is National Grapefruit Month
I chose the following recipes to share based on taste and presentation.
I've had broiled grapefruit and it was delicious. The Chicken sounded good and the directions were clear. A good slice of cake is all ways welcomed in my home.

If you should try one of these recipes. Feel free to give us some feedback!

Why Ch- CH- Chia Seeds?

Ch Ch CHia Seeds Chia Seeds

One ounce of Chia Seeds have an impressive 5 grams of protein and 10 grams of fiber amounting to about 138 calories.

Chia seeds are high in Omega-3 fatty acids.
                     promote a healthy digestive tract — relieving constipation, diarrhea, and inflammation.
                     are gluten-free and grain-free.
                     are an excellent source of magnesium.
Most impressive is these little seeds can help you stay hydrated and stave off hunger because they soak up water, then slowly release it as it is digested.

Chia seeds can be eaten by the handful as a snack, added to a salad, smoothie or mixed in with rice pilaf.

Chia seeds have a neutral flavor and a nutty texture which makes it flexible to use in a wide range of recipes.

Here are five ways to use Chia seeds:

To Make Homemade Energy Gel
For children and especially active adults. Add a couple tablespoons of chia seeds to a cup of coconut water. Let sit for about ten minutes and you’ll have an incredible energy gel! Chill, and you’ll have an amazing gel for hydration and energy with no fake colors, flavors and GMO corn syrup.   

As an Egg Substitute
Chia seeds are a great egg replacer in baking or cooking.  Finely grind Chia Seeds. Blend one tablespoon ground chia seeds with three tablespoons of water. Let sit for 15 minutes and use the gelled chia seeds to replace the equivalent of one large egg.

To Thicken Soup or Gravies

In place of cornstarch or thickening agents try thickening your culinary creations by mixing Chia seed powdered or whole with water. Start with one tablespoon of water to two tablespoons of chia at a time to reach the desired thickness.

Use as a Filling for meatballs, meatloaf or burgers

Combine Chia Seeds and water. The seeds will quickly form a gelatinous coating, which will absorb the water. Let the seeds set, to thicken. About 15 minutes, you will have a thick mixture, that can be added to the meat mixture, when it is ready to mix. This will help bind and add moisture to the meat.

Turkey Circus Burgers
6 Servings
1 ½ tablespoons chia seeds
½ cup water
¾ cup onions, medium dice
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1 tablespoon grapeseed oil
1 tablespoon water
1 ½ pound lean ground Turkey
½ cup coarsely grated carrot
1 tablespoon finely chopped cilantro
1 tablespoon finely chopped flat leaf parsley
½ teaspoon Emeril’s original essence seasoning
¼ teaspoon sea salt
¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
Combine Chia Seeds and water. Stir constantly, for 45 seconds. The seeds will quickly form a gelatinous coating, which will absorb the water. Let the seeds set, to thicken.
Heat oil a sauté pan over medium heat. Add onion and sauté stirring and allowing onions to cook until translucent.
Add minced garlic, and stir, to the onions and allow to cook for another minute. Remove from heat, and set aside.
In medium mixing bowl, add ground meat, grated carrots, caramelized onion/garlic mixture, Chia Seeds, and seasonings. Combine well, with gloved hands or large spoon.
Form into 6- 4 ounce patties, that are about 1/2 inch thick. These can be immediately cooked, on the hot grill or in a large nonstick pan for approx. 3-4 minutes per side, depending on your desired doneness.
Serve on you’re a toasted bun with avocadoes, tomatoes and lettuce and Russian dressing or your favorite toppings.

Use as a Breading
Use chia seed to coat fish or chicken for a crispy coating and bake. It toasts up well and provides a nutty, crunchy flavor.  Mix chia seeds with crushed almonds and almond flour and seasonings coat chicken and or fish spray with cooking oil and bake on a nonstick cooking tray.  Be creative…

Cornmeal & CHia Crusted Tilapia

Cornmeal & Chia Seed Crusted Tilapia
Yield: 4 servings
4 boneless tilapia fillets patted dry
½ teaspoon old bay seasoning
½ teaspoon ground black pepper
1.5 Tablespoons Mayonnaise
3/4 cup yellow cornmeal
1/2 teaspoon chia seeds
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
olive oil cooking spray
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
On a plate, toss together the cornmeal, chia seeds, garlic powder and pepper.
Lightly spray a foiled line baking sheet with oil set aside.
Sprinkle old bay seasoning over fish. Spread a little mayonnaise one one side of each piece of fish, and then invert the fish into the cornmeal mixture. Press firmly and then flip the fish over and place onto the baking sheet.
5. Bake for 15-20 minutes depending on the thickness of the fish.
Note: Do not add more chia seeds or else you end up with an overly crunchy fish instead of one with a nice texture.
Recipe adapted from Savoring the Thyme

Fight a Cold with Zinc

Zinc Did you know?

To fight a cold

Zinc works better than vitamin C to put the brakes on a cold.

Yes, Vitamin C boost the immunity, but studies show zinc shortens a cold by a day and a half.

Just start taking Zinc supplements or comsuning Zinc enriched  foods within 48 hours of the first tickle in your throat.

Oysters and  Wheat Germ are foods that have the highest percentage of Zinc.

Check out these recipe to help shorten your cold .

Oyster Stew

Oyster Stew

Spinach Parmesan Oysters

Spinach Parmesan Oysters

Thai Vegetable Curry with Wheat Germ
Thai Vegetable Curry

Chocolate Truffle Pie with Wheat Germ Crust

Chocolate Truffle Pie with Wheat Germ Crust

Lobster and Crab are also high in Zinc.

Zinc is an essential mineral required by the body for maintaining a sense of smell, keeping a healthy immune system, building proteins,
triggering enzymes, and creating DNA. Zinc also helps the cells in your body communicate by functioning as a neurotransmitter.
The body does not store Zinc.

A Cooking Project with the Kids!

Cooking Project with the kids
One of the challenges of a snow storm is keeping the kids busy. Between the games, the movies and perhaps playing in the snow, cook with your kids.
Here are a few recipes to try. Also one for homemade play dough.

Start with this simple soup recipe

Chicken Noodle Soup
Chicken Noodle Soup

Make use of the snow for a tasty treat!

Snow Ice Cream

For this recipe you’ll need clean fresh snow. You can either collect it as it falls in a bowl or choose the best place to collect clean house outside our house.

This is a classic recipe that works really well because the sweetened condensed milk is thick and helps hold quickly melting snow together.


  • 1 gallon or big bowl of clean snow
  • 1 14-oz can of sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract


Mix the ingredients together and eat the snow ice cream. 

Note: The condensed milk works well because of its thick texture.  

If you don’t have sweetened condense milk use heavy cream, soy milk or milk.

Also add a cup of sugar to the recipe to sweeten.

You can also make Snow Cones using syrups made from fruits and juice that you have on hand in the blender.

Blueberry Snow Cone Syrup
Blueberry Snow Cone
Makes 8 Servings (about 2 tablespoons per serving)
  • 1 cup fresh or frozen blueberries
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
1. Place the blueberries, water, honey, and lemon juice in a blender, and blend until well combined.
2. Pour the syrup into a squeeze bottle or a measuring cup and pour over snow packed into a cup.

Nutrition Information per Serving (2 tablespoons): 15 calories, 0g fat (0g saturated), mg sodium, 4g carbohydrate, 4g sugar, 1g fiber, 0g protein

Here is another recipe for Mango Snow Cone Syrup
. Use these recipes as a guideline for our creatiiviy
Both recipes adapted from Makeover Moms.

Keep the hands busy making dough.........

Homemade Play dough

homemade play dough

1 cup of flour (whatever kind you have on hand)
¼ cup of salt
½ cup of water
3 to 5 drops of natural food coloring


Step 1: Mix together the flour and the salt.
Step 2: Mix together ½ cup of warm water with a few drops of food coloring.
Step 3: Slowly pour the water into the flour mixture, stirring as you pour. Stir until combined, then knead with your hands until the flour is completely absorbed. If the dough is too sticky, add more flour until it doesn’t stick at all.

Most of all have fun making memories with the kids Feel free to post on this blog to share your experience.