Connect with us

Tips & Advice

12 Tips for Saving Water in the Kitchen

Published

on

Here at Green Prophet we are concerned about the current water shortage. Today we’re sharing 12 water conservation tips for the kitchen that can impact the Middle East.

1. If you use a dishwasher, always fill it completely and choose the fastest setting.

2. When washing by hand, soak to soften the residue, then scrub with a brush or sponge. Only use running water for a final rinse, never as a cleaning tool.

3. Dilute dish detergent in advance and use a small amount so it will dissolve properly. Excess soap goes down the drain or need more water to be rinsed off.

5. Install a sprayer on your faucet. This distributes a smaller amount of water to a larger area.

6. When washing utensils, don’t fill items like glasses, pots and bowls. Tilt them so that the water reaches the sides and bottom.

7. Defrost foods in the refrigerator to avoid soaking.

8. When washing a jar or glass, put in a small amount of soapy water and shake with the cover on. Then transfer the water to the next utensil. Wipe and rinse.

9. Use a minimum of cooking water to retains nutrients and save on cooking time. Pasta needs much less water than the package instructs, just stir frequently.

10. Save cooking water for soups, grains, and bread dough. Don’t reuse water from washing dishes, but water from cleaning vegetables can be reused in the washing machine, toilet or garden. A microwave or pressure cooker retains more moisture than the stovetop or oven.

11. Make one-pot meals (like mejadera) to save on washing.

12. Place dirty pots in the sink to collect used water, instead of soaking them in clean water. In some countries, like in Australia, they use rainwater tanks to gather rainwater. Suppliers like http://supatank.com.au/ assists homeowners to set up a rain catchment system that connects to the bathroom, kitchen and anywhere where water is most needed during the day.

Continue Reading

Chefs

Redefining Holiday Sweets: Culinary Experts Suggest Delightful Alternatives to Traditional Christmas Pudding

Published

on

By

As the festive season approaches, the perennial debate over the traditional Christmas pudding arises. While some relish this classic dessert, others seek alternatives that are equally festive but more aligned with their tastes. Let’s explore some chef-recommended alternatives to the conventional Christmas pudding, offering a twist to your holiday feasts.

Yule Log: A Chocolate Lover’s Delight

The Yule log, or Bûche de Noël, is a popular alternative in many households. Michel Roux, renowned for his culinary expertise, suggests this as a French alternative to the traditional pudding. The Yule log is a light chocolate sponge, rolled with ganache and often spiked with Grand Marnier, adorned with caramelized hazelnuts. It’s a visually impressive dessert that chocolate enthusiasts will adore.

Pastry chef Graham Hornigold, founder of Longboys, echoes the sentiment for a Yule log variant, the Mont Blanc roulade. This dessert is versatile, allowing for various flavor combinations and even a vegan version by substituting dairy products with plant-based alternatives. Hornigold’s Christmas favorite includes a vanilla sponge with blackcurrant jam, chestnut cream, and candied chestnuts, served with blackcurrant ripple ice cream.

Sticky Toffee Pudding: A Pub Classic

Sticky toffee pudding, a pub classic, is another crowd-pleaser. Sabrina Ghayour, author of “Flavour,” shares that this dessert has been a long-standing tradition in her family. She adds a unique twist by infusing the toffee sauce with coffee and warming spices like cinnamon, vanilla, and cardamom, drawing inspiration from the coffees of the Arab Middle East.

Warming Baked Fruits: A Lighter Option

For those seeking a lighter option, Matt Tebbutt suggests warming baked fruits. Based on a Delia Smith recipe, this dish includes winter fruits baked in masala with cinnamon and nutmeg. Served with whipped mascarpone cream, it offers a light and delicious alternative to the dense Christmas pudding.

Spiced Ice Cream: A Chilled Alternative

Contrary to the winter chill, ice cream can be a delightful festive dessert. Rick Stein recommends semifreddo, a frozen dessert akin to ice cream but with a lighter, mousse-like texture. Flavored with Christmas spices, fruit macerated in Kirsch or Cognac, orange zest, and vanilla, it’s a creamy delight. Stein suggests setting it in a kougelhopf pan for a wreath-like appearance, decorated with cocoa powder and flaked almonds.

Sarah Raven takes the ice cream idea further with her coffee meringue ice cream cake topped with pomegranate seeds, perfect as a festive centerpiece. The addition of burning brandy adds to the celebratory spirit.

Boxing Day Delight: A New Tradition

Finally, if none of these alternatives appeal, why not simply postpone the Christmas pudding to Boxing Day? Michel Roux and Matt Tebbutt suggest enjoying it cold or fried in butter the next day, offering a delightful twist and reducing food waste during the festive season.

In conclusion, the Christmas pudding, while traditional, isn’t the only option for a festive dessert. From the chocolatey Yule log to the light and fruity baked fruits, and the unconventional spiced ice cream, there are numerous ways to end your Christmas feast on a sweet note. These alternatives not only cater to different palates but also add a touch of creativity and personalization to your holiday celebrations.

Continue Reading

Tips & Advice

Decoding Nutrition Labels: A Guide to Making Healthier Food Choices

Published

on

By

In today’s fast-paced world, where convenience often trumps quality, understanding the nutritional value of what we eat has never been more critical. With a plethora of food options available, the ability to read and interpret nutrition labels is a vital skill for anyone looking to maintain a healthy diet. This article delves into the art of deciphering nutrition labels, empowering you to make informed choices that align with your dietary needs and goals.

The Importance of Nutrition Labels

Nutrition labels are more than just a regulatory requirement; they are a window into the contents of our food. According to a study by the Food and Drug Administration, understanding these labels can lead to better food choices and, consequently, better health. The labels provide information on calories, nutrients, serving size, and other essential data, helping consumers identify the healthiest options.

Understanding Serving Sizes and Portions

One of the first things to note on a nutrition label is the serving size. This is crucial because all the nutritional information displayed pertains to this specific amount of food. As Harvard Health Publishing points out, serving sizes are standardized to make it easier to compare similar foods; however, they may not reflect the portion you usually consume. For instance, if a packet of chips lists the serving size as 10 chips, but you eat 20, you need to double the nutritional values to understand what you’re actually consuming.

Calories: The Energy Measure

Calories are a measure of energy, and understanding your caloric needs is fundamental to managing weight. The Mayo Clinic suggests that an average adult needs about 2,000 calories a day, but this varies based on age, sex, and physical activity level. Nutrition labels provide the number of calories per serving, helping you gauge how a particular food fits into your daily caloric intake.

Nutrients: The Good and the Not-So-Good

Nutrition labels also list the amount of various nutrients, including fats, cholesterol, sodium, carbohydrates, dietary fiber, sugars, protein, and certain vitamins and minerals. The American Heart Association recommends paying close attention to:

  • Saturated and Trans Fats: Linked to heart disease, these should be limited in your diet.
  • Sodium: High sodium intake can lead to hypertension. It’s advisable to choose foods with less sodium.
  • Dietary Fiber: Foods high in dietary fiber, like fruits, vegetables, and whole grains, are beneficial for digestive health.
  • Sugars: Keep an eye on added sugars, which can contribute to weight gain and other health issues.

The % Daily Value: Your Nutritional Compass

The % Daily Value (%DV) on nutrition labels indicates how much a nutrient in a serving of food contributes to a daily diet. As explained by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, 5% DV or less of a nutrient per serving is considered low, while 20% DV or more is high. This guide can help you quickly assess if a food is high or low in a particular nutrient, aiding in balancing your diet.

Ingredients List: The Tell-All

Beyond the numerical data, the ingredients list on food packaging is equally telling. Ingredients are listed in descending order by weight, as noted by Healthline. This means that the first few ingredients are the most predominant. Be wary of products where sugars, unhealthy fats, or unrecognizable ingredients appear at the top of the list.

The New Nutrition Label: What’s Changed?

Recent updates to nutrition labels have made them more user-friendly. Key changes, as outlined by the FDA, include larger font for calories, updated serving sizes to reflect what people actually eat, and the inclusion of added sugars. These modifications aim to make it easier for consumers to make informed food choices.

Making Healthier Choices

Armed with the knowledge of how to read nutrition labels, you can make healthier food choices. Opt for foods lower in saturated fat, cholesterol, and sodium, and higher in dietary fiber, vitamins, and minerals. Remember, the goal is not just to eat less but to eat right.

Conclusion

In conclusion, understanding nutrition labels is a powerful tool in the quest for a healthier lifestyle. By becoming savvy about what’s in your food, you can take control of your diet, make smarter food choices, and ultimately, lead a healthier life. Remember, every small step towards understanding what you consume contributes significantly to your overall well-being.

Continue Reading

Tips & Advice

The New Culinary Revolution: Sohla El-Waylly’s Low-Waste Cooking Hacks

Published

on

By

In an era where social media platforms like Instagram, YouTube, and TikTok have become the new cookbooks, culinary creators are rising to prominence. Among them, Sohla El-Waylly stands out as a beacon of innovation and accessibility. Known for her home kitchen exploits, she’s a culinary creator, writer, video producer, and community advocate. Her recent cookbook, “Start Here: Instructions for Becoming A Better Cook,” has been one of the most anticipated releases of the season, according to HerMoney.

Breaking the Mold

Sohla El-Waylly is not your typical culinary artist. She challenges the status quo by questioning the “how” and “why” behind cooking techniques. “In my culinary journey, whether I was in a professional kitchen or just following a recipe, a lot of times someone just tells you to do something,” Sohla says. “They don’t tell you why, they don’t tell you how something works, and I find it very hard to work that way.” This sentiment echoes a broader shift in the culinary world, where understanding the science of cooking is becoming increasingly important, as noted by experts at the Culinary Institute of America.

Grocery Store Hacks: Quality Over Deals

When it comes to grocery shopping, Sohla has some unique insights. She recommends buying fruits and vegetables that are on sale, arguing that this is when they are at their peak freshness. However, she cautions against buying meat on sale, stating that discounted meat is often close to its expiration date. This aligns with food safety guidelines from the USDA, which advise against purchasing meat that is close to its “sell-by” date unless you plan to cook it immediately.

The Art of Low-Waste Cooking

One of Sohla’s most significant contributions to the culinary world is her focus on low-waste cooking. She advises using what you have on hand and being flexible with ingredients. For instance, if a recipe calls for parsley but you only have dill, go ahead and make the swap. The same principle applies to root vegetables; if you don’t have a beet, use a carrot. This approach not only minimizes waste but also encourages creativity in the kitchen. The Environmental Protection Agency supports this low-waste philosophy, emphasizing that food waste is one of the largest components of landfill waste.

The Takeaway

Sohla El-Waylly is revolutionizing the way we think about cooking. From questioning traditional methods to offering practical grocery store hacks and championing low-waste cooking, she is a culinary creator for the modern age. As we continue to navigate the evolving landscape of food and cooking, figures like Sohla offer a refreshing and sustainable approach that resonates with a new generation of home cooks.

Continue Reading

Trending