How to make biscuits like a boss !

This Southern staple is light as a feather when made with a delicate hand

Here’s everything you need to know to make amazing biscuits.

Cold Butter is Key

admin-ajax (2)

Preheat your oven to 400ºF with the rack in the middle. With a knife, cut your butter into small pieces, then place it on a small plate and return it to the fridge until ready to blend with the flour, or even place it in the freezer for 5 minutes—cold butter does not readily absorb into flour and this is what allows those great flakey layers to form. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, baking powder and/or yeast (if your recipe calls for a self-rising flour, it may only call for little, if any, leavening), salt and, if using, sugar. Add the chilled butter pieces and, using a pastry blender, two butter knives or your fingertips, cut the butter into the flour mixture until mixture is sandy with some larger pieces of butter still intact. Do this quickly to avoid allowing the butter to warm.

Make a Well

admin-ajax (3)

Create a well in the center of the bowl and add the chilled liquid, which will generally be buttermilk or milk.

Don’t Overwork

admin-ajax (4)

Stir quickly but with a light touch just until the dough comes together.

Roll the Dough

admin-ajax (5)

The dough can be dropped onto an ungreased baking sheet, using a soup spoon, to make “drop biscuits”, or pressed out and cut. If rolling and cutting, turn out dough onto a lightly floured work surface, dust top with flour and very gently fold it over onto itself 5 or 6 times, then with floured hands, gently press out into a 1-inch-thick round.

Cut Out Biscuits

admin-ajax

Using a floured 2-inch cutter, cut out biscuits and transfer to a baking sheet, spacing them 1-inch apart. The remaining dough can be reformed and cut, though the biscuits from the reformed dough will be a tad less light.

Bake

admin-ajax (1)

Bake the biscuits until they rise and are lightly golden, 15 to 18 minutes. Biscuits are best eaten warm from the oven. Try them slathered with butter and perhaps a little jam; with eggs and bacon; turkey and gravy; or butter and ham.

5 Infused Water Recipes To Keep You Hydrated

While we mosey on into winter, it’s important to remember that while the seasons change, our healthy habits shall remain the same. Well, almost the same. We all know how important it is to stay hydrated, and I could rattle off a number of facts about why it’s vital to keep up our daily water intake. But sometimes the same lessons can get boring, much the same as carrying out those monotonous lessons learnt. Which is why I want to share with you my love for fruit infused water. Not only does pretty fruit floating around in your glass make sipping away all day a feast for the eyes (and belly), but the number of holistic benefits are astounding. Here are a few refreshing recipes that taste great, look great, and make you feel even better. Enjoy! ❤

Blueberry + Pomegranate + Mint

infused-water-2

This one is great for those of you just starting out. The water seems to dissipate the bitter undertones of the blueberry and pomegranate leaving you with a lightly sweetened flavoursome drop. Dark berries and pomegranate seeds are rich in antioxidants which help clean free radicals out of your system, while fresh mint stimulates the metabolism to aid in digestion.

Kiwifruit + Coconut Water

infused-water-7

I like to think of this combination as the “green juice” of the infused water world. With that deliciously recognizable green flavor, the kiwi fruit has much the same advantages of other greens in that it’s highly alkalizing, meaning it has a rich supply of minerals to replace the excess of acidic foods we eat throughout the day. As for coconut water, it’s extremely hydrating, lightly sweet, and tastes amazing. I like to serve this one with chilled kiwi and ice!

Orange + Grapefruit + Lemon + Cucumber

infused-water-6

This combination has got to be my favourite, with the strong dose of citrus being balanced out by the cool tones of the cucumber. The citrus fruits pack a dynamo punch of amazing natural properties, mainly vitamin C, which means an immune system boost perfect for us headed in to winter. The sliced cucumber is not only refreshing, cooling, and delicious, but it can also help reduce bloating caused by high sodium intake. Your glass can be refilled many times throughout the day, even re-using the fruits the next day if you keep them chilled in the fridge over night.

Raspberry + Strawberry

infused-water-3

Another combination rich in antioxidants – this one is simple, looks beautiful, tastes amazing, and best of all can be reused! When I’m finished with my infused water for the day I like to strain the berries (including berries from the other recipes here too) and pop them into the freezer to later add to a smoothie – that way you also get the fiber content which is important for digestion.

Blueberry + Lemon + Rosemary

infused-water-2

I thought I’d save the best till last with this heavenly combination. I always have rosemary sitting on my windowsill and the scent it gives off when I water it in the morning is intoxicatingly beautiful, so I thought I’d try adding it to my water. Et voila! Rosemary has anti inflammatory properties and is commonly prescribed to aid and improve overall digestive health, but most of all I find having the scent near me very calming without being too punchy and floral.

So take care my girls and guys and keep yourselh hyderated, you know how India’s summers are 😡

All you need to know about honey <3

Honey is one of the regulars in my rotation of natural sweeteners. But the days of the honey bear as the lone option on market shelves is long gone. There are over 300 varieties in the United States and each has a unique flavor profile and hue.

Honey Flavors
There are over 300 varieties of honey in the United States. Each has a unique flavor profile, anything from mild to distinctively bold, and the honey hues range from nearly colorless to deep brown.
images (1)
Clover honey: This is the type most commonly found in stores. It varies in color from water-white to extra-light amber and has a delicate flavor.

Orange blossom honey: A top honey in Florida, Texas, Arizona and California, this pick has a white to pale amber tint and the distinctive flavor and aroma of orange blossoms, making it a nice choice for cakes and cookies.

Alfalfa honey: Widely available in Utah, Nevada, Oregon and other Western states. The color is white or extra-light amber and the flavor is mild. This honey is perfect for everyday use.

Other varieties of honey include avocado, basswood, blueberry, buckwheat, eucalyptus, firewood, sage and sourwood. Many local farmers markets sell local variations.

Honey Versus Sugar
Although both honey and sugar are made from simple sugar, honey also contains small amounts of vitamins and minerals, including iron, niacin, copper, riboflavin, potassium and zinc. Honey also contains phenolic acids and flavonoids, which act as antioxidants. The darker the honey, the more antioxidants it contains.
images (2)
Strained Versus Raw Honey
Honey is made from honeybees that collect the nectar of flowers and plants. Honey is strained and filtered to ensure the quality and purity. According to the United States Department of Agriculture, strained and filtered honey is still pure honey. It does not contain any added ingredients or preservatives.

Raw honey isn’t filtered or strained. There are claims that raw honey is healthier than strained honey, the theory being that straining destroys the nutrients in honey. A 2012 study, funded by The National Honey Board, found that straining honey doesn’t affect its nutrients. Straining, however, will reduce the pollen count in honey.

Cooking with Honey
Honey can be substituted for granulated sugar in recipes but doing so takes a bit of trial and error. Start by substituting honey for up to half the sugar in a recipe. In some recipes, honey can be substituted for all of the sugar. If you’re baking with honey, here are the substitution guidelines:

Reduce the liquid in the recipe by one-fourth for each cup of honey
1)Add approximately ½ teaspoon of baking soda for each cup of honey
2) Reduce the oven temperature by 25 degrees to prevent over-browning
3) To prevent honey from sticking to your measuring cup or spoon, coat it with cooking spray before  measuring the honey.

download

We want plates!

What’s wrong with plates? Trendy restaurants which serve food on slates, in old tin cans and even in a shoe are shamed in hilarious Twitter campaign.

@wewantplates is a Twitter account which pokes fun at the weird and wonderful way in which restaurants present their food to diners.

Account was set up by Ross McGinnes, 40, from West Yorkshire after a friend posted a photo of a steak on a slate online.

Nearly 5,000 people from across the globe have followed the account.

Chef defends the use of quirky presentation, saying ‘we all like individuality and chefs are no different

A new campaign on Twitter that rails against the current foodie trend of serving up meals in novelty dishes is gathering momentum.

Steaks laid out on slabs of slate, gooey puddings on planks of wood or even dinner on a gardening spade…the backlash against domestic items being used as tableware is being spearheaded by @wewantplates, a Twitter account that is the brainchild of journalist Ross McGinnes.

In just a week, Mr McGinnes, from West Yorkshire, has already attracted some 5,000 followers with his series of witty ripostes to restaurants who have dared to inject a large portion of gimmick into their presentation of meals.

admin-ajax (14)

Kitsch? Or just plain irritating? This photo of a mini garden bench was posted on the @wewantplates Twitter account, which is biting back at restaurants who use novelty ways to present food.

admin-ajax (13)

Who pinched the plate? And the cutlery? A southern feast is served up on a solitary sheet of grease-proof paper with a little shopping trolley full of chips on the side

admin-ajax (12)

Fancy that, it’s bread in a hat: One Twitter user was left aghast when they were served a selection of bread in a flat-cap, presumably one that hadn’t been worn

He says: ‘I set the account up a week ago after a friend posted a picture on Facebook of an average-sized steak, which had been served to him on a large chopping board.

‘It was captioned, without irony, “That is a big meal!”

‘It wasn’t a big meal – he’d fallen for all this style-over-content nonsense. I searched Twitter for an account which would allow me to vent my spleen with like-minded people, but found nothing.

‘We Want Plates was born, and has already topped 5,000 followers.’

Diners rankled by the imagination of the restaurants they’ve eaten in have been quick to send in shots of their own experiences, with bread and butter served in a flat cap, afternoon tea perfectly placed on a mini garden bench and a communal portion of spaghetti served straight on to the table top.

admin-ajax (11)

Started just a week ago, the Twitter account, run by Ross McGinnes from West Yorkshire, has already attracted plenty of attention from disgruntled diners calling for a return to simple plates

admin-ajax (10)

Mamma mia! This Italian restaurant takes the words communal and table to the limit, with diners invited to tuck into a sharing portion of spaghetti and sauce on the bare surface

admin-ajax (9)

A crate idea? Tartare sauce in a tiny watering can, peas in a plant pot and fish and chips in a wooden box

admin-ajax (8)

Unique: A delicate starter is served atop a piece of stone

admin-ajax (7)

No it isn’t bedtime, yes, this is part of your dining experience. A surprised diner tucks into ‘a yoghurt ice cream “brush”, mint-eucalyptus crème “paste” and a gin and tonic’ at a restaurant in Germany

He adds: ‘I’m certainly not looking to challenge any small businesses by ‘outing’ them for their chopping boards or mini shopping trolleys of chips. The only ones that I’ve named directly, or retweeted, are the bigger chains. I’m sure they can rise above it.’

One chef willing to put his head above the parapet, Michael Wignall who runs The Latymer at Pennyhill Park Hotel in Bagshot, Surrey, said that diners would miss the inventive ideas if chefs returned to more simple tableware.

‘Why do people want different clothing or cars? Why not all drive around in the same one! After all, they all do the same job don’t they? Food is about the whole experience, we all like individuality and chefs are no different.’

So how does Mr McGinnes actually think restaurants should present their food? With little fuss, it seems. ‘Simple white plates and a well-pressed, clean table cloth. Is that too much to ask?.’

admin-ajax (6)

Food can look great in mason jars (but is a pain in the @rse to eat) says Ross

admin-ajax (5)

Tea time with a difference: This deconstructed brew was served with milk in test tubes

admin-ajax (4)

Cheesy feet anyone? Brie balls served in suede Camper shoes might be one step too far

admin-ajax (3)

Looks sharp! Butter slivers served on a broken bathroom tile won’t wash with WeWantPlates

admin-ajax (2)

Cosy crusts: Switzerland likes to serve bread slippers in restaurants

admin-ajax (1)

The chopping board where it all began: Not a terribly big meal, just a ‘normal-sized meal inexplicably served on a large piece of wood,’ tweeted Ross

admin-ajax

Evergreen and always yum: The Grain Store in London’s King’s Cross serves mushroom croquettes on bark

Hahahaha, laughing right? intrigued too right? so here it is just sharing some info on world’s crazy ideas 😉

What Makes Coffee Smell So Good?

An Infographic Makes Scents of It

Mmmm … the aroma of coffee. Even some people who don’t drink it enjoy coffee’s heady scent. And those of us who are coffee drinkers may respond to the smell of a freshly brewed pot with a love that can be embarrassing in its fervor.

Why do we adore it so? Past research has indicated that just the smell of coffee sends a wake-up call to the brain and reduces the stress of sleep deprivation, and now there’s an infographic that parses the chemistry of coffee’s aromatic appeal.

fnd_coffee-infographic.jpg.rend.snigalleryslide

“There are a number of different ways in which coffee’s aroma compounds are created,” Compound Interest, the chemistry blog that created the infographic, explains. It adds that the Maillard reaction, a chemical reaction between amino acids and sugars that makes browned foods like seared steak so delicious, “is a big contributor here, the reaction between proteins and sugars in the coffee beans producing a range of products.” What’s more, the site notes, “degradation and decomposition of other compounds in the coffee beans can also produce aroma compounds.” Brewing also plays a role.

But as for the aromatic chemicals themselves, Compound Interest lays it out thusly, “A number of families of compounds are significant contributors to coffee’s aroma. Several sulfur-containing compounds are of importance, including 2-furfurylthiol, with an aroma that on its own is actually commonly described as ‘roasted coffee’. There are also some compounds which on their own might smell pretty unpleasant, but in chorus with the other compounds add nuances to the aroma; for example methanethiol, which has a smell described as like that of rotten cabbage, and which is also a significant contributor to the smell of flatulence. Another sulfur-containing compound, 3-mercapto-3-methylbutyl formate, is brilliantly described as having a ‘catty’ odour in isolation.”

coffee
Um … ew? But it gets a bit better. “Other contributing families of compounds in [coffee] include aldehydes, which generally add a fruity, green aroma, furans, which contribute caramel-like odours, and pyrazines, which have an earthy scent. Guaiacol and related phenolic compounds offer smoky, spicy tones, and pyrroles and thiophenes are also present in low concentrations,” Compound Interest explains.

Very interesting. But I think I might need another cup of coffee before I can totally wrap my head around it.

9 Menu Terms To Know

Menu Language Decoded

 You already know to avoid the word “fried” on the menu if you’re looking for a light meal — and for that matter, to forgo anything labeled “diet” or “low cal” if you’re in the mood for a treat. But menu language has lots of other nuances that can clue you in to the nutritional profile of the food. Here are 9 terms that help indicate whether a menu item is an everyday choice or more of a special-occasion indulgence.

Flaky

FN_phyllo-dough-istock_s4x3.jpg.rend.snigalleryslide

This term usually means lots of butter is involved — the steam released from butter as it heats up is what gives baked goods the many layers that create flakiness. (The exception to this rule is certain types of fish, which are sometimes described as flaky because their flesh naturally breaks into discrete “flakes” when cooked, no butter necessary, although it may be used in cooking the fish too.)

Crispy

FN_crispy-fried-chicken-thinkstock_s4x3.jpg.rend.snigalleryslide

This word usually indicates that a food is battered/breaded and deep-fried. “Crisp,” however, is a different story.

Crisp

FN_Romaine-Ingredient_s4x3.jpg.rend.snigalleryslideUnlike “crispy,” the foods most likely to be described as “crisp” are raw vegetables — think salads, cucumbers or carrots. These foods may also be called “crunchy,” a term that can definitely go either way.

Crunchy

FN_Carrot-Ingredient_s4x3.jpg.rend.snigalleryslide

This term can be used to describe raw vegetables as well as deep-fried foods like tempura, mozzarella sticks or fritters. Check with your server so you know what’s in store.

Adult

FN_grilled-cheese-thinkstock.jpg.rend.snigalleryslide

No, i am not talking about X-rated bachelorette party cakes. When you see “adult” or “grown-up” on a menu, it’s nearly always as a modifier for something typically associated with kids’ meals: grilled cheese, mac and cheese, chicken fingers.

Confit

FN_duck-confit-thinkstock_s4x3.jpg.rend.snigalleryslide

Literally meaning “preserved,” “confit” is typically prepared by submerging savory ingredients such as poultry or vegetables in pure fat, which helps to preserve them. Sweet confits are made by covering fruit with sugar syrup. Confit is generally an indulgence, no matter how simple the original ingredient may sound.

Gratin, AKA au Gratin

FN_potatoes-au-gratin-thinkstock_s4x3.jpg.rend.snigalleryslide

Foods prepared au gratin (e.g., potatoes) are typically covered with a buttery or creamy sauce, cheese, and breadcrumbs.

Braised

FN_braised-short-ribs-thinkstock_s4x3.jpg.rend.snigalleryslide

This cooking method entails quickly browning meat or vegetables, then simmering them for long periods of time in an acidic liquid (such as wine or vinegar) that reduces down to a flavorful sauce. Braised meats may seem rich, but in reality braising is usually reserved for tougher cuts of meat with less fat and more connective tissue, and excess fat is skimmed from the surface of the sauce before serving. All in all, braised meats are a pretty nice balance between virtuous and indulgent. Braised vegetables (e.g., chard and carrots) are even lighter, although the cooking method also gives them a hearty flavor.

Poached

FN_poached-salmon-thinkstock_s4x3.jpg.rend.snigalleryslide

While poaching is widely thought to be a fat-free cooking method, sometimes ingredients are poached in liquids other than water, such as milk, cream or a combination of the two. Not that fat is bad (that myth has long since been debunked), but poached fish is definitely a lot higher in fat and calories when it’s poached in cream.

So, i know alot of things might come as a shock (which is what happened with me :p) but now u know! Don’t hold back to show off your knowledge the next time u visit a restaurant 😉

How to Eat Like a Billionaire

……According to Warren Buffet

If you want to eat and drink like a billionaire, forget the filet mignon, oysters, caviar and truffles, never mind the champagne and fine wine: Just scarf down a boatload of snack foods and soda pop.

That’s what mega-wealthy investor Warren Buffett does. At 84, the Berkshire Hathaway CEO – renowned for both his frugality and his curiously lowbrow taste in food – says he drinks at least five 12-ounce servings of Coca-Cola, made by a company he owns a great deal of stock in, every single day.

“I’m one quarter Coca-Cola,” Warren Buffett told Fortune. “If I eat 2700 calories a day, a quarter of that is Coca-Cola.”

Three of those Cokes (regular or Cherry) he’ll consume during the day, two at night. Sometimes he’ll have one for breakfast first thing in the morning, occasionally enjoying it with a can of potato sticks – Utz brand, to be precise, a company he told Fortune he’s thinking of buying. He has also been known to greet the day with a big bowl of ice cream.

His sugar-, sodium- and fat-heavy diet may not be terribly healthy, but he maintains that it’s strategic. “I checked the actuarial tables, and the lowest death rate is among six-year-olds. So I decided to eat like a six-year-old,” he told Fortune. “It’s the safest course I can take.”

Guess it’s gotten him this far …