How Do You Season Your BBQ? Maybe It’s Time To Try Something New

How Do You Season Your BBQ? Maybe It’s Time To Try Something New

You have no idea how important barbecues are to families and friends. They help bring people together and while at it, enjoy a good time. Most barbeque sessions are held during holidays or when vacationing. You need to ensure that you have the best pieces of meat, whether beef, mutton, or pork. Some grilled chicken pieces will also do just fine. It’s been a tradition in most families but it’s time that you tried something new. To help you out with it, here is how to season your BBQ. 

Marinating

When it comes to any barbeque, it’s all in the preparation process. There’s no barbecue without some sauce, toppings, and the roasting processes involved. You need to have the best of the best pieces of meat to ensure that it’s finger-licking good. A brisket rub with some of the best selection of flavors could help add taste and color to your meat. This will ensure that the attendants come back to your next barbeque. Leaving your guests yearning for more should be at the top of your priorities.

Invest In The Best BBQ Grill

To prepare roasted meat, it requires more than the meat itself. Having the best BBQ grill will ensure that you have a final product that sends the taste buds in a frenzy. The taste of your grilled meats will be dependent on the type of grill you decide to use. If you are in the market for the best grill, then you are in the right place. It’s not going to be easy as there are so many products out there that could make or break your BBQ occasion. Here are some of the things that you need to consider when choosing grilling equipment. They include:

  • Fuel – There are both electric and grills that use gas. You also have grills that use wood pellets. Wood pellets could help in adding some flavor to your meat. If you are a vegetarian, this could be a great grill idea to help retain the nutrients and vitamins in your produce
  • Smokers – Some grills are designed in such a way that helps smoke your pieces of meat. Whether it’s a salmon on such a grill, pork ribs, or some sweet potatoes, you have this type of grill to help add additional flavors
  • Portability – Consider a grill that you’ll be able to take out on whatever season or occasion. Some grills are designed to stay outdoors while some work well indoors. Ensure that you have your needs factored in before making the final purchase decision 
  • Cost – To end up with quality grill products, you need to part with some extra bucks. As they say, cheap is expensive and this is no exception when it comes to investing in a grill. Different brands and grill types come with different price tags

Prepare Your Grill

Whatever type of grill you own, you need to ensure that your grill is prepared before the D-day. This means cleaning it right after use, on the day of the occasion, and ensuring that you have it ready to burn some ribs. Did you know that you also need to season your grill depending on the foods you intend to grill? Well, now you know. Grill preparation is as important as the foods you are grilling. Below are some steps to take when preparing your grill:

  • Clean the metal tongs and metal spatula after and before use
  • Get rid of grime by using the best grill cleaning products
  • Ensure that charcoal or wood pellets have been emptied after and before use

Prepare Your Food In Time

steak

Food seasoning takes time and if you have a large crowd, it means that you need ample time preparing your food. It could be that you are a vegetarian or a meat lover. Either way, you need these foods sorted out, cleaned, and in most grilling cases, marinated. Well-prepared foods turn out the best as opposed to those that were prepared in a rush. 

You Need Grilling Experience

There’s a good reason why seasoned men and women are considered grill gurus. They have been there and know the tricks and hacks of coming up with savoring grilled foods. It takes time to learn the art of grilling. You need to follow suit and research the best grilling techniques before burning up your foods on the grill. 

The above are tricks and hacks that will come in handy if you are to try new grilling techniques. You’ll want to ensure that your family and guests have the best. Nothing is as disappointing as expecting juicy ribs and ending up with black and crusted ones!

 

Six Things to Consider Before You Buy a Blender

Six Things to Consider Before You Buy a Blender

When it comes to kitchen appliances, a blender is a jack of all trades. From blending, pureeing, food processing, grinding coffee, and chopping to crushing ice or even making homemade peanut butter, everything is a breeze when you have a blender.

When you are craving some smoothie or a cocktail to beat the hot summer, all you need to do is gather your ingredients, chuck them in the blender, and press a button. Within seconds your drink of the day will be ready. However, with so many features and specs, finding the right blender is no cakewalk. You want one that can crush ice for some cocktails as well as perform the daunting job of making almond butter from scratch.  

Like all other kitchen appliances, price definitely plays a pivotal role in a blender’s performance. But it shouldn’t be the only consideration. Blender type, usage, power, and speed should also be considered so that you get your money’s worth. In this article, we will walk you through all of these buying factors so you can find the best option for you.

Blender Types

If you have decided on buying a blender, you might have already looked up some reviews online. But before you check out specific brands or scroll through the endless debate of Wolf blender vs Vitamix, you need to know what type of blender you need. Depending on the types, their usage varies and so does their versatility. In general, blenders can be categorized into three types: countertop blender, immersion blender, and personal blenders.

Traditional Countertop Blenders

Countertop blenders are the most powerful and versatile blenders. Being high-powered, they are quite bulky in design. High-performing countertop blenders can blend smoothies, can make a puree, mayonnaise, or even prepare almond butter. 

They come with a base with an attached motor and several different jugs or jars. Depending on your ingredients, you can change the jug type or the blade type to cater to your needs. Depending on the jar size, they can hold up to 48-72 ounces of food.

Immersion Blenders

Immersion blenders are handheld, compactly designed blenders. They are outstanding when it comes to blending liquid or making puree, juices, sauces, or even just for mixing eggs. They can also pulverize onions, tomatoes, herbs, spices, and peppers. Immersion blenders come in two variations, one of which is corded and the other is cordless.

Despite being compact, they have powerful motors. Another perk of using an immersion blender is it will provide you enough flexibility while blending, you can ensure even blending by controlling its movement.

Personal Blenders

Personal blenders are an excellent option if you live alone and need to prepare a single-serving smoothie or soup. Their compact use is suitable for single-serving use, and they can hold only 8-20 ounces. 

Most personal blender jugs are designed to be taken on the go. You can prepare your smoothie and take the jar with you when you go out; that saves extra clean-up.  

Power

Blenders usually range from 200-1000 watts of power. Generally, a 500-600 watt blender can perform all types of blending. A 300-watt blender can blend smoothies and chop vegetables. With power above 700 watts, blenders can pulverize and liquefy dry ingredients.

Despite the common notion that the power or wattage is the key determinant of a blender’s performance, it is not always the case. You need a good combination of blade type, jar shape, and power to make a blender perform better. However, for an immersion blender, higher wattage does translate into high performance.

Blade Type

Blender blade type is one of the key catalysts for its performance. And there’s a myriad of combinations out there as manufacturers are yet to find a combo that works for all types of ingredients. Some blade types are excellent for pulverizing dry ingredients, and some are suitable for creating a smooth texture. 

There are cross-style blades that are suitable for food blending—pureeing, preparing salad dressing, hummus, or salsa. The wing-style blade is suitable for blending drinks, frozen fruits, or crushing ice. And you can also find a combination of both. 

Some benders might even feature multilevel blades to ensure even blending.  To ensure versatility of performance, go for a blender that comes with separate, detachable blade types.

Jar Shape

Just like the blade type, you will see hundreds of designs in a blender jug. As blenders create a vortex inside the jug when they function, the shape of the jar impacts how well the foods will blend.  

With the best jar shape, foods will stay near the blade to help them blend well. A rounded bottom jar ensures that the vortex works well and the food doesn’t get far from the blade. 

The interior of the jar should be 4.5 inches wide; anything much wider will cause the foods to splatter more and they will never reach the blade after the first few rotations. Besides, it will also create a foamy texture in your foods by trapping the air inside.

Settings and Speed

Blenders can have a varied range of speed settings, especially countertop blenders. However, higher speed doesn’t necessarily guarantee better performance. Rather, what matters more is the slow rotation per minute (RPM). 

If the lowest threshold of speed is around 1000 RPM, the blender will be able to blend the ingredients without much splattering. Low RPM also ensures the ingredients stay near the blade when being blended. And that yields better performance than a high-speed blender that splatters the ingredient everywhere and you see the empty blades rotating. 

There is another advantage of slow RPM—it ensures the motor is not overworked and your blender will perform better in the long run. Look for a blender that has at least three-speed settings and a pulse button. These can take almost any regular workload.

Noise Level

With blender speed and power comes the noise. However, some newer models are designed to be far quieter than the older, bulkier models. But that doesn’t mean they will be whisper-quiet. On average, blenders can produce 88 dB of noise, far more than the 68 dB noise that human conversation can produce.

The noise level of a blender depends on the speed, motor power, and what ingredients you are putting inside the blender jug. To find a quiet blender, make sure it has a noise level lower than 70 dB.

The Bottom Line

As a last piece of advice, don’t buy a blender just because it’s expensive or has some cool new specs. While modern features like self-cleaning, interactive touch screen or auto shut-off options are nice to have in a blender, when it comes to the actual job, these new models might fall short. Besides, these specs have no control over the performance, and you might not even need those extra features. So there’s no point in paying extra for them when you can invest in the features that matter, such as the speed, motor, or blade type. To have more efficiency in the kitchen, look for the one that will provide durability as well as versatility in performance. 

5 Ideas for Spicing Up Your Meal Prep

If someone tells you that they like meal prep, there’s a strong chance they’re either lying or just getting started. The process can get tedious over time, and you might be struggling to find something new. This is especially true if you are not used to cooking, or maybe not the best at it. Thankfully, there are plenty of things that you can do to make the process more interesting, and add a little bit of variety. Let’s take a look at a few ideas for spicing up your meal prep.

Go International

The easiest way to make your meals more interesting is to inspire yourself with international cuisines. You don’t have to learn how to make mole or chicken biryani, but you can always include some foreign elements. One of the easiest ways would be to use marinades from different parts of the world for every meal. You could have an Asian-style marinade with soya sauce, honey, garlic, and ginger, a Greek-style marinade with olive oil, garlic, and yogurt, or a Mexican marinade with cilantro and orange juice, for instance. This will help mix things up and you can reuse these marinades for different dishes.

Get to Grilling 

If you’re going to be cooking large meals, why not use the grill instead? Everything is more interesting when it’s grilled, and it’s easier to prepare large quantities of food on a grill outside instead of a small, hot kitchen. You could even prepare two weeks’ worth of food and freeze a portion of it if you want. 

Get Creative

You shouldn’t be afraid to step outside the box when you’re preparing meals. One of the easiest ways to spruce up rice or any cooked grain is to use other liquids instead of water. Any liquid that you use will impart its flavor and you could be surprised at how it can make something that is often bland, like rice, much better. 

One of the simplest things you can do is use some sort of broth, but you can get even more creative and use tomato juices. Another thing you can do is make what is called a “fond” and use it as a base. You could braise meat with a few vegetables and aromatics, take out the meat, add water or broth, and cook whatever carb you want in it. You can also use something like white wine to deglaze the pan and add water afterward.

Choose the Right Containers

You should also make sure that you pick the right containers for your meal prep. Make sure that they’re all the same to make things easier for you. The best meal prep containers will have multiple compartments and will keep cold things cold, and hot things hot. Look for meal containers that have a space for sauces as having to carry another container just for this can be inconvenient. Also, we suggest you look at different materials as they vary in price and features.

Play Around with Your Salads

Salads can get boring over time, but it’s usually because we tend to stick to lettuce-based salads. There are plenty of other alternatives that you could use instead. Here, again, going international could give you some inspiration. We suggest you look at the Mediterranean and the Middle East there. A nice tabbouleh salad could be a nice break from the traditional Caesar salad, and it’s chock full of protein. 

Another thing you should do is add some pickled vegetables to your salad. We would also suggest that you go a step further and pickle your vegetables yourself. Home-made lacto-fermented pickles can make your salads and dishes much more interesting. Pickling is pretty simple too. All you need is a jar with a closable lid, the vegetables of your choice, water, and some pickling salt. You can also add a variety of aromatics like dill, garlic, cloves, and mustard seeds. We would suggest that you use distilled or filtered water too as things like chlorine can negatively affect the taste.

These are all things that you should make meal prep and your meals more interesting. Don’t be afraid to be original and explore your options.

10 Simple Things You Can Do To Add More Flavor To Your Food

10 Simple Things You Can Do To Add More Flavor To Your Food

Is food tasting too bland? A little twist can turn your tasteless food into gourmet delights. Read on to know how to enhance the flavor of food.

steak and vegetables

Hey, not everyone is born as Gordon Ramsey. Most of us are just human and are pretty bad at cooking. And, while letting other people cook for us can be easy and hassle-free, it certainly takes a toll on our health and wallets.

So, if you are insistent on eating clean healthy food, you have to do the cooking yourself. And, sometimes, even after spending hours in the kitchen, the best we can come up with is some tasteless and bland food. So, are we, the lesser talented chefs, too hopeless about making delicious food? Relax, there is still hope for you!

You, too, can make mouthwatering cuisine with some handy tips. Here are ten simple tips you can follow to add more flavor to your food.

All-Purpose Seasoning: The One-stop Solution to Everything Savory

Sometimes you work so hard on a dish, and it still comes out tasting flavorless. Most of us are pretty scared of strong spices, as we don’t know how to use a combination of powerful flavors without adding a large number of herbs or spices.

This is why you need to have a bottle of all-purpose seasoning at home. This spice mix goes well with meat, fish, veggies, starches, and pretty much anything delicious. The best all-purpose seasonings will have the perfect balance of all the herbs and spices used in the mix so that none of the flavors become overwhelmingly dominant.

Don’t Overcook Your Meat

While on a diet, many people eat boiled meat. If you are eating boiled breast pieces every day, you will get tired of it quickly. The secret to cooking any kind of meat is to not overcook it, as 95% of the time it makes the meat dry and flavorless.

Unless you are a seasoned chef, making a pot roast, cooking in a slow cooker, and knowing all your steps, it is better to avoid overcooking.

Pan-seared meat is a much better option regarding flavors. To retain the juiciness and flavor of any meat, try to marinate or season it well. Use a food thermometer so that you don’t undercook meat, especially poultry.

Acidity Adds Flavor

Do you know how sometimes a spritz of freshly squeezed lemon can absolutely change the flavor of your salad or beverage? This is because acidity tends to enhance any flavor, you just have to learn when and how much to use. A little goes a long way when you include some acidic ingredients in your food.

Citruses are great for adding acidity to food since they have the added benefit of making your food aromatic. However, try exploring different types of vinegar, as they can bring a significant difference to any cuisine.

When in Doubt, Use Garlic

There is a reason why Italians and Koreans are so generous about using garlic in their cuisine. It’s because garlic can make any food taste wonderful. Those who hate the smell of garlic are missing out on top-notch flavor.

So, unless you are a vampire, try using some grated garlic in any of your bland dishes to glorify it. It also has numerous health benefits.

The next time you are pan searing steak, try adding some garlic to your butter while basting, and trust me, you will not regret it. However, don’t burn your garlic, because it can turn unpleasant very quickly!

Cold Desserts Need To Be Sweeter

Have you ever made a cold dessert, but it always ends up tasting like it lacks sugar? This is a common mistake new chefs often make. This is because while hot or at room temperature, that very same item can taste perfectly sweet. But, once it is cold, the sweetness reduces.

This happens because our taste receptors send a stronger signal to our head when the food is hot but gets numbed when the item is cold. This is why cold sodas taste less sweet than regular temperatures. So, add more sweetness when making no-bake cheesecake, ice cream, and whatever dessert you eat cold.

Learn To Use Soy Sauce

Asians love using soy sauce. They use it to cook, they use it as a dip. Soy sauce makes food taste better, but you must learn how to use it. For example, most people don’t add salt to make egg rolls and often use soy sauce instead, as it enhances the flavor and adds just enough saltiness.

The most important factor while using soy sauce is knowing how much to use. It can make your food very salty, quickly, so be careful. Just add a little to your marinade or a splash while cooking vegetables, meat, fish, etc. Once you are nearly done cooking, taste your food and add some more if the taste is lacking, to avoid overuse.

Caramelize ingredients

You want to optimize the flavor of your food, learn the art of caramelization. This works for both sweet and savory food. Because, why have a regular cafe latte when you can drink caramel macchiato?

Caramelization works wonders on savory food. For example, caramelized onions pair marvelously with meat. Caramelizing your mushroom makes them taste sweeter and helps bring out their lovely flavor.

Neutralizing Overwhelming Flavors

Knowing how to neutralize your food mess-ups is an important milestone of learning to cook. When it comes to fixing food that is too salty, for liquid items like soups and stews, add more water to reduce saltiness. To avoid salt mess-ups, try adding a little in the beginning and add more later if needed.

Adding a little acidity or sweetness also helps. Acidity also works to reduce sweetness, and so does a slash of alcohol. For food that is too spicy, add more neutralizing ingredients like unsalted tomato puree, potatoes, or some sweetness. 

Fat is great for breaking down the spiciness, that is why dairy works wonders to reduce heat. Try using butter, yogurt, milk, cheese, etc. But, you must understand what kind of dairy works for that particular dish.

Knowing When To Use Herbs & Spices

There is a right time for adding herbs and spices to a dish. Ever wondered why oregano is often used near the end when cooking Italian food? While some spices and herbs need some cooking in oil to release flavors, others like oregano vaporize too quickly, so it’s better to add them near the end or sprinkling them after the food has been cooked. The key is to learn what to add when and which herbs and spices go well with different food. Learn all about spicing up your food here.

One Word: Umami

We all know about the four tastes of food: sweet, salty, sour, and bitter. The fifth taste recognized first by the Japanese is known as umami. Umami is the flavor of glutamates that are released from some food like meat and mushroom, which greatly enhances the flavor. Soy sauce is considered an umami flavor. Using umami flavors in your savory food elevates its flavor.

Bottom line

Now that you know ten simple factors that will improve the flavor of your food, try applying these to your cooking today!

Here Is Why You Should Buy A CBD Vape

Here Is Why You Should Buy A CBD Vape

vape lab

It is safe to say that we have finally moved on from the practice of smoking as a society. After a long and uphill battle against the tobacco industry, cigarettes are becoming less commonplace in the public sphere.

And that is for a very good reason! Not only have they been proven time and time again to deteriorate overall health and quality of life drastically, but they also cost a lot, smell bad, and are pretty unattractive habit to have.

In fact, smoking cigarettes has been consistently linked to failing cardiovascular health, increased chances of strokes, and lung cancer that can spread to other organs in the body. That is not to mention the minor but often neglected effects such as sallow and yellow skin, tooth decay, and weak immune systems. Click on this link for more information: https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/10566 

These days, plenty of people have turned to flawless vape instead, and it is clear to see why. Due to the lack of smoke, there is no unpleasant smell that sticks to your clothes or makes people around you cough. Additionally, many substances that cause cancers, such as carbon monoxide and tar, are not included in vapes. People can consume pure substances such as nicotine without harming themselves.

But vape use is not limited only as an alternative to cigarettes. On the contrary, this method of “smoking” has been gaining popularity in the cannabis community too! Many people who have never even smoked cigarettes before have turned to cannabis vapes nowadays.

What could motivate a non-smoker to pick up a vape pen finally? The reasons for this drastic shift are numerous. Stay with us as we give a short but not exhaustive list of why you too should get on the vape train!

The advantages for getting your vape pen

CBD Vape pens

We already gave a few reasons for why you should trade in your cigarettes for a fancy vaporizer, but if statistics are to be believed, the smoking figures were at an all-time low anyway. So, why should you decide to start vaping if you have never smoked until now?

Well, as we mentioned, plenty of folks nowadays use vapes to consume cannabis. With the legalization of this plant spreading all over the nation, it is only natural that you would be curious to try it, right? Now you can do it safely without fear that someone might smell it on you in public and give you judgmental looks or the hassle of rolling a joint half full of tobacco.

Moreover, vaping is one of the best ways to feel the effects of marijuana. Don’t believe us? Scientific studies show that the bioavailability, or the proportion of a particular substance entering your bloodstream, is as high as 70 percent for vaping! In comparison, smoking only results in about 30 percent of CBD entering your body, and other methods such as oil or edibles as low as 6 to 20 percent. Clearly, vaping is the best way to get the most for your money.

Another reason for transitioning to vaping is care for the environment. Namely, no one wants to see joint filters all over the place on their daily walks! And even if you take care to dispose of them in the trash cans, they still end up contributing to pollution. Not only are water sources affected, but many animals also mistake them for food and frequently end up choking on them. Read more about this issue here.

If you still need convincing, we can point out the clear, hygienic benefits of buying your vape pen. When smoking cannabis, especially with others, it is customary to share the joint with others, and usually, someone else rolls it and breaks up the flower if there is no grinder around. This can present a lot of hygienic issues that you might not be comfortable within the current climate. That is why we advise you to get your personal vape pen that only you will use.

Besides, you could also save loads of money just by using vape pens. Indeed, many of them use replaceable cartridges, but some offer the option of refiling the ones you already have! In those cases, all you need to do is buy the oil in the scent you prefer, and you are good to go!

Speaking of scents, vaping does not just get rid of the pungent smell of marijuana, but it offers the complete opposite – pleasant aromas that emulate some of your favorite foods and drinks. Some stores provide products such as Cheefbotanicals vape cartridges with CBD, where you can get any flavor from standard ones like menthol to unbelievable ones like cereal breakfast or mimosas! But if the CBD and the smell get you hungry, don’t blame it on us!

Have you made your decision yet?

We hope we have convinced you of all the advantages of getting a vape pen, and you are on your way to a store to buy one. For whatever reason you might need it, it is evident that vaping is the way to go these days. 

It is sleek, discreet, and unlike other smoking devices, allowed in numerous places of service. If you are looking to calm your nerves down before an important meeting or to forego a beer in the bar and relax with some cannabis, CBD vapes are the right choice for you!