Middle-Eastern Spices for a Better Night’s Sleep

Middle-Eastern Spices for a Better Night’s Sleep

American writer Daniel Gilbert once uttered: “The secret of happiness is variety, but the secret of variety, like the secret of all spices, is knowing when to use it.” While Middle-Eastern spices are most commonly associated with culinary creations, some have also been proven to be very beneficial when it comes to combatting sleeping problems. This is great news for the 33% of Canadians that do not sleep enough according to a recent report released by Statistics Canada.  Instead of turning to a consumer market inundated with remedies claiming to cure insomnia, an increasing number of people are seeking more natural alternatives to these chemically-laden pharmaceuticals. These alternatives may already be in your kitchen or pantry in the form of common herbs and spices, such as the following, that can help you wave goodbye to the long sleepless nights you have become accustomed to.

Cumin seed tea alleviates insomnia

Apart from being used worldwide in culinary dishes, cumin seeds also boast a number of very beneficial medicinal properties. Cumin has long been used in Ayurvedic medicine to induce sleep and has also made its way into countless westernized households to help bring on slumber.  There are two common ways in which cumin is consumed in order to obtain a good night’s rest. It can either be mixed with a mashed banana or brewed into a fragrant tea. To make cumin seed tea simply roast 1 teaspoon of cumin seeds over low heat for about half a minute. Add one cup of water and bring the mixture to a boil. Allow to simmer for 5 minutes before straining it. Drink the tea about an hour before bedtime.

Nutmeg is a natural sedative

We know that sleep is essential and the crew over at BedTester agrees, stating that “Sleep is an important part of life, arguably one of the most important parts”.  Sleep plays a pivotal role in our lives and without enough of it, our health and well-being can deteriorate greatly.  Luckily nutmeg has proven to be a very effective remedy for insomnia. Not only does nutmeg contain high levels of myristicin which inhibits the secretion of stress-inducing hormones, but it is also a powerful sedative. Add a sprinkle of nutmeg together with a squeeze of honey to a glass of warm milk or mix it in with a teaspoon or jam and consume an hour before bedtime.  Remember to only use a pinch of nutmeg at a time, however, as an overdose can lead to hallucinations and other psychiatric concerns.

Saffron ensures a good night’s rest

Saffron is the most expensive spice in the world and with good reason -it takes nearly 250,000 stigmas to produce just one pound of the spice. The lavish spice is known to have many healing properties including alleviating insomnia.  The best way to use saffron as a sleep remedy is to add a pinch, together with your favorite sweetener, to a glass of warm milk or tea, an consume it just before bedtime. Not only will you soon find yourself drifting off to dreamland, but you are also less likely to wake up during the course of the night.

Cinnamon does more than prevent cardiac disease

Cinnamon has long been praised for sporting numerous health benefits including aiding in weight loss, the prevention of cardiac disease, and combatting insomnia. Although cinnamon does not trigger the release of sleep-related hormones like other spices do, it does prepare your body for a good, uninterrupted night’s sleep by easing your anxiety and preventing blood sugar spikes and crashes from occurring. You can mix a few pinches of cinnamon and a small dollop of honey into a warm cup of milk or, alternatively, brew a tea with a few cinnamon sticks and a sweetener of your choice.

Although mass-produced pills and potions will always have a place in our modern-day lives, it is good to know that we have options. By experimenting with the various herbs and spices in your kitchen you may soon find yourself sleeping better than ever before.

Ten exceptional smoker recipes to get your smoker out

Ten exceptional smoker recipes to get your smoker out

If you have not yet bought a smoker, it is probably because you have not found a reason to yet. While it is easy to procure a smoker, it can be challenging to figure out what to do with it, once you have it home. There are a lot of meals you can enjoy with it, but only if you have the top 10 smoker grill recipes for outdoor pleasure handed to you. Not everyone is lucky enough to have a family recipe passed down to them, which is why this article is here for you. Find below ten exceptional smoker recipes that will have you getting out your smoker and probably calling in a couple of friends over:

1. Chicken Wings
The good old chicken wings come first. Although chicken wings are not traditionally prepared with a smoker, you will be surprised at how good the end results are. You can use pecan wood or hickory for best results. Add in as many flavors as you want, to better the taste, including brown sugar, smoky paprika, and garlic based rub.

2. Bacon Explosion
Bacon also had to be on this list, because who doesn’t love bacon? This is an easy-to-prepare recipe that will take your picnic or BBQ to the next level. This smoker recipe has bacon and sausage weaved together, to come up with such an explosion of pleasure.

3. Smoked Mac and Cheese
Did you know you can smoke side dishes? With smoker meat on the table, it would be great to have a creamy, cheesy and full of flavor side dish to complete the meal, and smoker Mac and Cheese is just the thing you need. It works best even for a BBQ for vegetarians.

4. Smoked Turkey
How about a Thanksgiving BBQ with a traditionally smoked turkey? Before hitting the smoker with your turkey, marinate it with flavors for extra juiciness and tenderness. Make sure you season it properly for the perfect taste. Then on the smoker, ensure you baste the turkey with a butter-based solution, taking the smoker slow and low, to get all the parts right.

5. Buttery Smoked Corn on the Cob
How about another vegetarian-friendly recipe? Smoked corn on the cob is just the perfect thing to get started on. If you are one who particularly enjoys grilled corn, then a smoked one will elevate your palate even more. This can also work great to go alongside smoked meat for meat lovers.

6. Smoked salmon
Nothing beats a good smoked salmon for all the fish lovers. This is one of the easy smoking recipes to try out as a topping for your salad, a high-protein snack or a morning bagel.

7. BBQ Smoked Ham
If it is your first time trying out your smoker, you can start with a BBQ smoked ham, which is more or less fail proof. You can add pineapple on top for the extra juice and flavor. The best bit is that it is easy to male and you can hardly mess up this BBQ Smoked Ham.

8. Smoked deviled eggs
Say you don’t like meat, but can you resist some well-smoked eggs? Yes, eggs can also be smoked, and the best part is that you don’t have to wait forever before they are cooked and ready to serve.

9. Smoked brisket
There are several ways to smoke the brisket and get by the stall period that happens after some time into the smoking. You can pause 4 hours into the smoking, dip the brisket in some beer for a couple of minutes, then put it in the oven for four more hours. The flavor, in the end, is definitely worth the wait.

10. Smoked Lobster Tail
I bet you have never tried this one. You need to be melted butter to help with the process, but the lobster tail is high in flavor and the result is scrumptious, to say the least.


Foraging For Ingredients In Canada

Foraging For Ingredients In Canada

In a recent study, 84% of Canadians said that what they eat has a direct impact on their health. The study also found that 80% of women and 72% of men try to eat healthily on a regular basis. Simply by foraging, you can find natural wild food, untouched by pesticides and other chemicals. These are healthy ingredients that you can enhance with herbs and spices and make a delicious dinner from. Even better, they cost absolutely nothing.

Where can I forage?

In Canada, you are permitted to forage on most public land and in the national parks. If you want to forage on private land though, you must have the landowner’s expressed permission. On traditional territory, you should make sure that you get permission from the local First Nation Community. In wilderness, field and forest areas, you may find that you need an off-road vehicle like an ATV to get to where you want to forage. It’s not always easy to get around on foot over large distances, especially if it is snowy or muddy.

What should I take with me?

If you’re planning on mainly foraging for fruits, vegetables and plants, then you should make sure you take a suitable basket or container for storing your finds in. Salad leaf type plants wilt quickly, so you might want to put an ice box in your vehicle to keep them cool. Make sure that you take some hardy gloves, in case of thorns. You will also need some scissors or secateurs for cutting off stalks and stems.

Foraging etiquette

Only ever take what you’re going to eat yourself. Don’t ever strip plants of berries – leave enough for other people. Whilst you are foraging, leave the land as you found it, don’t drop litter or cause any damage. Make sure that you know what you’re picking, and don’t ever eat anything if you can’t identify it. This is particularly important with mushrooms and fungi that can be extremely toxic if you pick the wrong variety.

What are the common plants I can forage for?

Stalky Rhubarb: Stalky Rhubarb grows wild in Canada, and you can find it by the roadside. It is a fruit that is often overlooked, but it has a natural sweetness, and pairs beautifully with wild raspberries and strawberries. You can use it in jams and crumbles, and it also freezes well, provided that you squeeze the moisture out of it first.

Dandelions: These so-called weeds grow wild across the country: just make sure that you pick them in an area that hasn’t been sprayed with pesticides. The roots can be brewed with anise and lemon verbena into a delicious tea, and the flowers can be fermented into a unique tasting wine. It’s even better if you add allspice and fennel.

Morel Mushrooms: One of the most popular foods to forage for is mushrooms – in particular, the morels in Canada are rich, earthy and delicious. Prestigious chefs will pay handsomely for good quality morels to enhance their dishes. Morels are great as part of soups and stews, on top of pizzas or as part of a salad. They also hold spices well, and are beautiful as part of a vegetarian curry. You can find Morels on escarpments or in forest areas.

Ramps: Also known as wild leeks, ramps can be found growing in clusters in dense forest areas. They are commonly found at the end of April and beginning of May. They make a tasty addition to a salads, or can be added to a dish in place of onions. The whole plant can be used, so you won’t need to pick many.

Foraging for fresh, delicious food is a wonderful way of eating healthily. Across Canada you can find fruits, vegetables, edible plants and nuts growing wild, and they are all natural and free.

Experience The World’s Best Flavours With An Indian Road Trip

Experience The World’s Best Flavours With An Indian Road Trip

India spices are globally renowned and, with a growing economy, the subcontinent is exporting more than ever. Over a million tons of spices native to India were exported in 2017-2018. From hot chilli peppers to sweet and spicy ginger, there is an Indian spice to suit all tastes. However, the only way to enjoy an authentic combination is to visit the country itself and have it cooked for you by local chefs. A road trip will allow you to visit more towns and discover the incredible diversity of flavour.

Wherever you end up in India, raising the funds required to travel to this corner of the world needn’t be difficult. Don’t be afraid to venture into the largest cities such as Mumbai or Delhi. As the second cheapest country to live in, you can splash out on the finest dishes on offer, even if your funds are limited. Each new region will vary slightly, but which one is for you?

The Mild North

If you don’t like anything too hot, then focus your Indian road trip in the north. Here sauces tend to be made from garlic and onion. This makes for more mild dishes such as the rogan josh. Despite the lack of spice, this is an aromatic meal with big flavors. Biryani is another popular dish, with cool dairy products like yogurt being added to any hot dish.

The Chinese Inspired East

You should choose to venture eastwards if you are interested in sampling Chinese or Mongolian inspired treats. Here you’ll find sweeter dishes, as well as fruit and pork. A panch phoron spice blend, similar to Chinese five spice, is typical of this region.

The Vegetarian West

Although meat is plentiful in India, you may not find it so readily in the Hindu west, where many people adopt a vegetarian diet. This leads to unique flavour combinations, with coconut, fruit and jaggery contributing to sweeter dishes. Coastal regions will have more seafood, including fish curry.

The Seriously Spicy South

If your road trip allows you to head south, then lovers of spice are in for a real treat. Mustard seeds and chilli add a kick to almost any meal you can order. This area is also full of exotic fruits and vegetables, such as coconut and tamarind. This can add a healthy and delicious dimension to the hot spices.

There is so much to explore in India from the mountains to the temples but for many, the food is a real highlight. The perfectly crafted blend of flavours will be like nothing you have experienced. However, remember that each region has unique traditions, so pick your route carefully to enable you to stick to what you love or try something new.

Ѕрісеѕ Yоu Саn Fіnd Whеn Yоu Travel Іn Mеxісо 

Ѕрісеѕ Yоu Саn Fіnd Whеn Yоu Travel Іn Mеxісо 

One of the lаrgеѕt сіtіеѕ іn the wоrld соntаіnѕ аnсіеnt tеmрlеѕ ѕtаndіng side-by-side wіth modern building dеѕіgn. Mеxісо Cіtу оffеrѕ аll that the world’s buѕу, densely-populated, сіtіеѕ hаvе fоr visitors: bаzааrѕ, ѕhорріng, museums, restaurants, аnd more. Onе оf the fіnеѕt cuisines thаt ѕаtіаtе thе gastronomic dеѕіrеѕ оf реорlе worldwide іѕ Mеxісаn fооd. Mеxісаn food refers to a ѕtуlе оf food thаt оrіgіnаtеd from Mexico. Yоu wіll lоvе Mеxісаn сuіѕіnе duе to іtѕ vаrіеd flavours, grаnd dесоrаtіоn and its еntісіng ѕрісу tаѕtе.

Piramides dе Teotihuacan

These mаgnіfісеnt pyramid ruіnѕ аrе сlоѕеr tо thе сіtу than Chісhеn-Itzа, and are dеfіnіtеlу worth ѕееіng fоr thеіr оwn sakes. They аrе perhaps best vіѕіtеd wіth a tour guide. Brіng Aԛuаѕ frеѕсаѕ a rеfrеѕhіng beverage formed оf fruits, сеrеаlѕ оr ѕееdѕ, ѕugаr аnd wаtеr. Don’t forget ѕunѕсrееn, and соmfоrtаblе ѕhоеѕ! The сlіmb tо thе top оf еіthеr pyramid іѕ a tоugh оnе, but wоrth it fоr the view. Vіѕіtоrѕ саn choose from thе lаrgеr Pyramid оf thе Sun, оr thе Tеmрlе оf thе Mооn. Thе руrаmіdѕ are соnnесtеd bу the Avеnuе оf thе Dеаd.

Muѕео dеl Tеmрlо Mауоr

Durіng dіggіng bу a power соmраnу, аn аnсіеnt artifact was unеаrthеd: the Coyxáhuqui Stоnе. The resulting еxсаvаtіоn unсоvеrеd thе Tеmрlо Mayor and the ruins of ѕеvеn оthеrѕ. Thе museum соntаіnѕ thе trеаѕurеѕ unсоvеrеd at the ѕіtе. After a long tour in the musuem another рорulаr Mexican cuisine thаt will tісklе уоur tаѕtе buds іѕ “Arrоz соn Pоllо”. Thіѕ is a dіѕh соmрrіѕіng rісе аnd сhісkеn in Spanish. Thіѕ іtеm іѕ соnѕіdеrеd tо bе a trаdіtіоnаl dеlісасу.

Cаѕtіllо dе Chарultерес

Thіѕ western саѕtlе was buіlt іn thе lаtе 18th сеnturу. Frоm thе castle, visitors саn enjoy еxсеllеnt раnоrаmіс vіеwѕ of Mеxісо City. It’s аlѕо wоrth tаkіng ѕоmе tіmе tо wаlk thе scenic gаrdеnѕ. Nеxt, have a tаѕtе оf “Bаrbасоа”. Barbacoa dе cabeza, a North Mеxісаn dеlісасу, іѕ ѕlоwlу cooked соw head. Bаrbасоа реrсоlаtеd іntо Tеxаn сuіѕіnе whеrе іt was grаduаllу trаnѕfоrmеd into thе hіghlу admired barbeque.

Muѕео Nасіоnаl dе Antrороlоgíа

Thе еnоrmоuѕ muѕеum іѕ a visitor’s fаvоrіtе in Mexico City. Eасh оf 11 halls fеаturеѕ a different сіvіlіzаtіоn оf Mеѕо-Amеrіса where аrсhаеоlоgісаl finds аwаіt vіеwеrѕ. When viewing the museum, Pісо dе gallo will give you the energy to go on another visit when you try the spice. Pісо dе gаllо іѕ асtuаllу a fruit ѕаlаd wіth lіmе juісе squeezed into it. Salty white chilli роwdеr іѕ ѕрrіnklеd bеfоrе serving.

Cаtеdrаl Mеtrороlіtаnа

Thе Mеtrороlіtаnа is one оf the largest саthеdrаlѕ іn the wоrld. It іѕ buіlt оf brісkѕ frоm thе ѕurrоundіng ruins оf руrаmіdѕ аnd tеmрlеѕ. Trу visiting at nіght tо ѕее the cathedral іllumіnаtеd frоm wіthіn and spice it up with Taco. Taco іѕ a traditional Mеxісаn оffеrіng, соmрrіѕed of rolled mаіzе tоrtіllа wіth meat fillіngѕ. Taco tаѕtеѕ even yummier wіth сhорреd оnіоn, chilli ѕаlѕа, and оthеr garnishes. In Mexico, уоu will fіnd ѕеvеrаl vаrіеtіеѕ оf Taco. Thе ѕеrvіng оf a Tасо іѕ ԛuіtе interesting.

Mеrсаdо Cоуоасán

There аrе mаnу fооd mаrkеtѕ іn Mеxісо City, but this оnе іѕ clean and ѕаfе fоr tоurіѕtѕ. Hеrе are found frеѕh foods and bаrgаіnѕ оn ѕоuvеnіrѕ. Lосаl rеѕtаurаntѕ are fоund wіthіn thе mаrkеt for a tаѕtе оf аuthеntіс Mexico.

In the high mоuntаіnѕ lіеѕ grаnd Mexico Cіtу. It rewards vіѕіtоrѕ wіth nіghtlіfе, ѕhорріng аnd mоnumеntѕ frоm аnсіеnt tо modern. It’ѕ important thаt уоu have fun еxреrіеnсіng thе flаvоrѕ of Mexico while going around all these beautiful places to enjoy the best and make a memorable tour of Mexico. I enjoyed this trup by booking a vehicle at an affordable price from HolidayAutos.com to take me to every corner of Mexico to vіѕіt these great places аnd еxреrіеnсе the іnсrеdіblе Mexican сuіѕіnе.