Friday, November 30, 2012

Hot And Heavy Heintz

Heintz Ketchup is one of America's classic condiments.It goes well with everything, tempering the saltniess of French fires or adding dash to everyday scrambled eggs. However it's about to heat up, this time with the addition of jalapeno. The classic revs up with the addition of this fiery pepper.

Heinz has come up with the cool addition of jalapeno. This is a new twist on one of the world's oldest sauces. In th e past the company has brought colored ketchup to the table (literally) to appeal to kids . A flavored ketchup is something new. Artesanal ketchups have delved into the other flavors such as plum and pineapple however a mainstream corporation like Heintz has seemed reluctant to expand. It does pay off. The taste is kicky with a nice bite.There is still a sweetness but also a heat that's refreshing.The spiciness lingers as well however it's not scalding as with other hot sauces.

The ketchup is going to be versatile. It added to fries , giving them a pleasant fire. It will go well with steaks and burgers too. However it's the recipes that call for ketchup that will definitely benefit. It will definitely punch up deviled eggs, giving them a much need burst of fire. It will also make for an interesting French dressing adding spark to that usually bland topping. Add some maple syrup and liquid smoke to it for an interesting spin on barbecue sauce for pork, chicken and even fish  .

Heintz ketchup is an American classic.However updating it with jalapeno is a clever and tasty idea. This flavor is one to last - much like the original. Try it as a new spin with traditional dishes.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Sandy's Restaurant Toll

Even though Sandy happened a month ago, her effects are still being felt/ That also applies to retaurants through the area. Some can bounce back, most can not. Financially it has impacted the area worse than when Katrina hit the Gulf Coast seven years ago.

This was the subject of an article in yesterday's New York Times Dining section. Regular contributor Jeff Gordonier wrote about the devastation that hit some of the boroughs (and as I know the Jersey shore and Raritan Bay as well.) Brooklyn classic , the pizzeria Totonnos was devastated.When is it coming back? That's really for the insurance companies to deal with -sadly enough.Another city classic, the clam house Randazzo is history as well.The onwers will have to deal with rebuilding as well as dealing with loss , especially during the lucrative holiday party season.

Of course Coney Island also took a bad hit. The original Nathan's is history as well however it will be coming back. It will take a while, There is sand to deal with along with severe structural damage . Salt water , ever corrosive , destroyed wires and sockets. Insurance companies are also as devastating to deal with too. Many are chintzy with pay outs .One of my favorite places, Shoal Harbor  of Port Monmouth, New Jersey  had its' interior destroyed .unfortunately The owners have decided not to redo and re openpossibly because of all the complications that come with rebuilding.This is sad because this homey , fun place had the best lobster and Manhattan clam chowder. Hopefully they will change their minds.

Superstorm Sandy destroyed the area and some of our best restaurants. Hopefully most of them will come back. They may have been knocked down,but they are resilient. You can't hurt a classic,.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Rebaked Beans

What better to open up the holiday season than with baked beans. Nothing beats them as a side to a good ham and even better with a pork roast. There's a new old way to cook them - in the ground. Yup, that's right , you can bake them in a deep pit for a tastier treat.

This was the subject of an article in today's New York Times Dining section. The article written by John Willoughby,a sometimes contributor to the Wednesday section. He interviews master baked bean maker and chef Chris Schlesinger who is a bit of an innovator in other areas too. He first introduced live fire grilling to New York restaurants via his own his own. HE also is an expert in pit roasting cuts of meat too. Baking beans then was a no brainer. Like slow cooked meat, slow cooked beans are a wonderful blend of tangy and smoky , sweet and tart all at once. It's a slow melding of beans, maple syrup smoked pork along with mustard and comes from the Abenaki Indians of Maine where there are still bean bakes. These rival clambakes as far as with food, flavor and fun

For those ambitious enough to build a baked bean pit, keep in mind that is is labor intensive.You will need to dig a whole a little wider than the bean pot  There does need to be a pot to contain the beans and other ingredients (I imagine nothing fancy).There has to be six inches between the top of the pot and top of the hole.The fire has to be built with cord wood and then add about ten softball sized rocks to maintain the heat. You have to wrap the beans and other ingredients in foil before burying them . the beans have to be cooked for six hours but the taste is worth it however.

Baked beans are always a holiday treat. Baking them in the ground is a new old way of doing such It may be labor intensive but worth it

Monday, November 26, 2012

Soy Or Real? What's A Good Cheese?

What cheese is better for you? Soy or real? There's always the big question, especially now with the holidays coming and you want to make fun but healthy dishes. What's the pluses and minuses of each?

Soy cheese is very popular right now. Many use it for a variety of different dishes. It comes in different styles like mozzarella and pepper jack It  is healthier for you than regular cheese with being lower in calories. Any soy product is rich in isoflavonenes which help in promoting good cholesterol and good heart health. The problem is that soy cheese can dry out and lack the rich buttery taste and feel of real cheese. It's good for those weigh watchers who are watching their caloric intake - especially for the holidays. Yes, it is versatile.It can be on pizza or mixed with macaroni, but  the taste isn;t quite as decadent as the real thing.

Of course real cheese is always preferred.There's something wonderful about the rich buttery taste and always creamy texture. The problem is that it is high in calories as well as cholesterol. You can't gobble it down as much as as you could with soy cheese. Don't go overboard with it . It is better to cook with than soy cheese, creating a nicely browned crust on French onion soup and pizza. Soy cooked can leave a chalky aftertaste as well. However  the real deal can get rubbery if left out cold.

Each cheese ,has its' pluses and minuses. Go with whatever works best for you, your lifestyle and tastes. If you're a health nut go with soy, if you want flavor and taste , then stick with real cheese.Just go easy with it,

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Leftover Fun

Leftovers can be boring.That's just a fact and even more so wirh Thanksgiving one. How do you make turkey exciting once more ot add zing to leftover cranberry sauce? By being creative and making that extra food sing. There are many ways to do such.

There's always so much meat left over with any holiday meal. Luckily turkey is versatile and can be turned into everything from curry to sandwiches.An unusual way of having the last is cutting tow slices of stuffing into squares and heating it up with turkey and gravy .It's a take on an open faced sandwich. Another is adding egg noodles to the gravy for another spin.

Sides can be redone for a tastier dish. Cut up those leftover Brussels sprouts and sprinkle with hot pepper for a different kind of hot salad. Mashed white or sweet potatoes can be dipped into beaten egg and breadcrumbs and fried into tasty puffs. Serve the first with ketchup and the second with a tangy maple dip. Leftover mashed potoates can also be used as a cover for a turkey pot pie too, done differently like shepherd's pie. for thsi last also toss in the last peas, carrots and even lima beans.

 Holiday leftovers can be exciting if you just put a different spin on them. Add spice or serve in another way for some fun. You soon; will have an empty refrigerator again.

Friday, November 23, 2012

The Perfect Petite Gift

What do you do when the holiday gift giving and baking season starts? Buy Petite Treats cookbooks for yourslef and your friends. This is a delightful mini book chock full of delicious tiny sweets for not just the holidays but for everyday fun. It has everything from the original piecaken to whiskey mini cupcakes. There are dozen of neat recipes that are great to make.

The authors. Morgan Greenseth and Christy Beaver are the writers of both this book and another baking book,Mini Pies (both books are published by Ulysses Press and are $ 15.00)']\They are also the chief bakers behind Seattle's hip Mini Empire Bakery and have created these tiny yummy gems in their bakery. They are also the inventors of scookies, a cross between a scone and a cookie along with the piecaken a mini tart baked inside a cupcake. These look like fun to make along with the mini doughnuts and tiraminiscule, an elf's version of the classic tiramisu

What I like most about this book is that it's mostly vegan. Butter and shortening are replaced by vegan versions that anyone can easily pick up at Whole Foods>I like th efact that they have a non dairy butter cream.Another fun aspect of the recipes is that both Baker Greenseth and Baker Beaver use interesting ingredients such as whiskey and bacon for their whiskey maple bacon cupcakes and apple cider vinegar in almost every treat. They also put different twists on traditional recipes such as strawberry eclairs and a chocolate lava cake made with wine(along with a citrus flavored cannoli). Get Petite Treats this holiday season.It will not only give you ideas for your own mini treats but also makes a great gift for any baker .It's a little book but packs big punch.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Thanksgiving Wishes

To all my Americans readers at home and abroad a very Happy Thanksgiving. remember to eat wisely and to give thanks for having food on your table.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

A Thanksgiving Read

Once again The New York Times Dining  section devotes another issue to Thanksgiving. It's a fun read for tonight and even tomorrow. There's a variety of reminisces and recipes to follow along with an almost Scroogelike (sorry fellow author  Dickens)rant against turkey and for spaghetti carbonera.

Most of you are too busy to read this but enjoy the day and get rested for tomorrow. Have a good holiday wherever you are in the world.Now go on line and read The Dining Section.(or the paper version if you have it). Laugh at what some writers have to say along with cutting out good recipes to try on the weekend.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Holiday Antipasto

Holiday meals should always start with a good antipasto. The word means before pasta in Italian however it could come before any meal, whether Thanksgiving turkey or Christmas ham. The problem is  there are so many different dishes. What goes well with a full meal? What happens if your guests get stuffed on them and not the main meal? There are some easy solutions.

A true antipasto usually consists of cold cuts and cheeses along with the dressed vegetables. You can have all of this  if you serve small amounts. Most first courses have a wide array of meats from prosciutto to mortadella, Instead of having five or six varieties of cold cuts have one or two such as a salami and maybe a thinly sliced ham. Have a green and black olives along with thin,crunchy bread sticks..A nice touch is artichoke hearts as well along with some peppers.

If you're having a bigger crowd, then think about serving a bigger antipasto. Many cooks offer up a plate of easily made devilled eggs along with stuffed celery. At this point you can also serve more meats and even tuna if you want (although some diners my question this with their turkey).You can also take chicken and turkey livers and make a pate .Put different kinds of breads on the table along with crackers for simple sandwiches. Cruets of oil and vinegar can also be added, to be poured onto the meats or any raw veggies you may have set out for guests.

A holiday antipasto is a nice way to introduce the Thanksgiving turkey or Christmas ham. You can make it either as simple or elaborate as you want, depending on your dinner and guests. Try different plates for fun and variety.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Dinner Delegation

Too many cooks spoil the broth so the old saying goes. The same applies to holiday broths as well as dinners too. There have been endless fights, some of them even downright bloody, thanks to a few too many knives.left out. What to do to avoid all all out war? Delegate.

If friends and family ask to help, take it. However try to have a meeting where dishes and chores are delegated. Don''t be cowed by anyone wanting to make the main dish. This is your kitchen, your meal. You have control. Start with yourself. Decide what you can make and if you have the room to make extra dishes. The next is picking your kitchen team. You're going to need your own sous chef to help with cutting, slicing and dicing.Also decides who helps set the table and who helps with the clean up.,

The next step is delegating the dishes that people with bring. If two people have the same specialty dish, ask one to either vary theirs or maybe bring another dish.If there is still a stalemate, then give in. People can always bring extra stuffing or gravy home with themif there's extra grub.Also let your crew make what they make best. Thanksgiving is not the time for anyone to experiment with new dishes or exotic ingredients. Stick with easy basics that guests will enjoy., especially the younger ones.  Also take into consideration food restrictions, beliefs and allergies. Tailor your menu as to what guests , especially little ones can eat. Make it a rule that everything will have  basic ingredient. Nothing too wild or exotic.,

Too many cooks can spoil the broth . Yet if you delegate properly , you can have a tasty and easy Thanksgiving dinner. It's just a matter of assigning who makes what or who brings what

Saturday, November 17, 2012

A Guest At The Table

With the holidays coming there's always going to be guests at the table. The problem that they may not be totally attune with the way you and your family eat. The way to solve it is to tailor the meal along with explaining your traditions to others.

It's fun when relatives , especially kids, bring roomies or the future spouse home for the holidays.It's also neat when your or the spouse invite your friends and workmates over too.The problem is what happens when they don't like turkey? For vegans try tofurkey, with a mushroom gravy. For some, who are experiencing turkey for the first time, make a pork roast or even roast beef if they're not fond of the traditional bird. As for sides, ask ahead of time what people like or want. You also suggest that  they  bring their own  or give your their recipes .This makes them feel at home and expands your family's tastes as well.
Desserts can be a hassle as well.Most European based cultures thrive on big finishes, full of pies and cakes. For others, such as some Asian cultures there is a different type of sweet, usually a rice cake with some kind of filling. The best way to handle a multinational table is have a healthy mix of both fruits and cakes. Tangerines are big right now along with apples.Place small bowls of them on the table  as well as bowls of nuts too. This is a  , crunchy and a neat way  to end the dinner. For kids chocolate reigns supreme and you can hand out chocolate turkeys to them as a dessert or a fun favor.

Having guests over shouldn't crimp your holiday cooking style. You can tailor your menu so that everyone is happy with the food. Be open and consider it as a holiday adventure.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Thanksgiving Checklist

With The Times Dining section offering Thanksgiving help and tips, it's time to think of the holiday checklist . Despite it being less than a week away , there may be some items big or small that need to be picked up. It's pays to have an actual checklist though, so you know exactly what you have or need to buy.

Of course you have the turkey. Most already have even bought it before Hurricane Sandy struck . However what about those vegans that are in your life? What alternative do you have for them? You can get tofurkey slices or an actual tofurkey loaf.These can go well with mushroom gravy and stuffing. On that note for vegans, have a ready can or packet of brown or mushroom gravy for them. Sides are another think about. Do you have three or four standard ones or introduce new ones for everyone's tastes. Stock up on cans on veggies because you never know if one kind will be popular and get gobbled up. You can always open another can if you run out of the original.

Stock up on basics too. You';ll need flour for thickening your gravy. Any left over can be used for holiday baking a few weeks later. Sugar also is a must to keep. It';s not only used for cooking and baking but for sweetening all those after dinner teas and coffees. Eggs also should be bought.Not only are they used in most dishes like stuffing and breads  but also are needed in those big family breakfasts days after. The most basic staple, bread should also be bought in two or three loaves. You;ll need that amount if you have guests over for a few days. They can be used for sandwiches and of course morning toast.

It's time to get out the checklist  and see what you need to get. Start with a list and think about your needs for the holiday weekend. A well stocked kitchen, after all is an efficient one, and one you need.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Putting Chocolate In Thanksgiving

Chocolate is not your usual Thanksgiving ingredient, unless you count those foil wrapped chocolate turkeys kids receive. However it adds punch to some very sedate traditional desserts.The pies and cakes are no longer boring. They're fun.

The dash of chocolate was Melissa Clark's subject to yesterday's A Good Appetite  in yesterday's Dining section of The New York Times. She decides to create some fun desserts that are part Thanksgiving, part celebration. What is so different is that she takes traditional pies like pecan and adds  chocolate and coconut, It makes this decadent dish even more decadent, with a taste like a candy bar. She also adds bourbon which is standard in Southern pecan pie recipes and rich Dutch chocolate along plus the flaked coconut for chew.

There are other ideas too. Ms. Clark creates a rich custard using rum and bitter dark chocolate .To tie it in to the day she adds rum soaked dried cranberries.For a more G rated version add orange juice or zest so the kids can appreciate it as well.She adds a chocolate souffle cake to the menu as well. She jazzes it up with creme fraiche and for a really big surprise candied cinnamon scented butternut squash.If that's a bit too wild add some salted pecans or walnuts to offset the sweetness.

Chocolate on Thanksgiving? Yes, it does work. The sweet adds richness and fun to traditional yet staid desserts. It livens up a turkey day like nothing else

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

The Times Turkey Day Guide

With Thanksgiving only a week away, cooks , both experienced chefs and novices panic about cooking for a group. Not only that , but how to you put a spin on one of life's most traditional meals. Luckily the Times Wednesday's Dining section comes to the rescue. It has every kind of help and idea to get anyone through next Thursday's annual feast.

Everyone weighs in , in this week 's section. The great chef, Jacques Pepin gives advice as well as his memories of the holiday There is a deconstructed pumpkin pie (and yes it can be torn apart and rebuilt for a hipper crowd).There is wine advice from Eric Asimov along with how to condiment recipes.

Save this issue if you want as a guide or even a crutch for Thanksgiving. The recipes for the condiments, from Melissa Clark and Julia Moskin are definitely worth cutting out and saving/The squash recipe is also a good one. Steamed turkey is another recipe that's worth saving because it's an alternative to a completely roasted one. There are also a variety of steps for different preps that are very helpful as well. These are worth saving too for also Christmas or New Year's turkeys.

Thanksgiving ushers in a season of cooking. Use this week's Times Dining section as your guide. You;ll not only feel better but cook better too.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Special Diets

Sometimes foodies wind up eating too many good things which lead to a host of problems. Stomach problems abound and the nasty side effects (too vile to even mention here). That's when a trip to the doctor ensues and wiith it special diets. What's a foodie to do? Abide with it but also have fun with it.

At one time or another most will have to modify their eating habits to better suit their health. What that mens is goodbye to fruity cocktails and crunchy snacks. Soda is also taboo in some diets and that puts a huge crimp in everyday drinking habits. However , most diets do allow for iced tea which is easy to switch to along with fruit drinks  such as apple and cranberry. Some doctors will presribe Gatorade which has not only flavor but also the bonus of far as snacks, think pretzels  and even puffed rice as opposed to potato chips and Doritos.

Meals change too. Instead of those hot dogs and pastrami sandwiches you may want to switch to grilled or even boiled meats . The last may sound gross however you can always it up and mix with mayo to create a salad. Certain egg dishes can be allowed like poached or shirred. These are simply boiled eggs and can be served in fancy egg cups to jazz them up.Served with toast triangles or even squares.Some veggies may be forbidden as are salads.Try to sub in with your doctors suggestions. If you are allowed , then try to grill or sauté them. They'll taste better. Also vary them if you have a choice. A new diet doesn't necessarily mean a bland and unexciting one. It can be just as good and as fun as your old one.The benefit. : feeling better and eating better

Monday, November 12, 2012

A Cookie For A Veteran

Veteran's day was yesterday however it shouldn;t be for just one day. We should honor them year round.There are so many ways to do so, especially food wise Foodies unite and honor those who have fought for your freedom.

Bake sales are always a great way to help anyone.From school kids to church groups, a sale featuring homemade goodies is always a great way to raise money and awareness. You can even make patriotic flag or eagle cookies too, to remind people of why this event is happening. Patriotic cupcakes are also fun, especially if you ice them in the specific colors of our military forces. Candies such as fudge or chocolate dipped pretzel rods can also be on the venue. Set up coffee and hot water for tea urns along with tables and chairs for those who want to eat their treats right away.

Care packages have always fed our troops from the Revolutionary War to our current ones. You can easily make homemade cookies to remind the troops of home but also include gum and candy bars for a quick sugar burst. Sending healthy snacks like sunflower or pumpkin seeds along with fruit leathers can be better. You can have a variety of the last in different flavors. Add some batteries and cologne for some fun. Another idea is helping out at veteran's home whether in the kitchen or just bringing in coffee and cake for our retired servicemen.

Veteran's Day should be extended  to everyday and not just November 11th. Honor them with a bake sale or just hanging out at the veteran's home with some coffee and cake. The old saying of "an army travels on its' stomach "is true. Add to it  with your own spin/

Saturday, November 10, 2012

A Night Off

sorry dear readers, there was an emergency today which actually righted itself. we 'll be back Monday with the same food and drink advice.enjoy Veteran's Day. help them and our serving military anyway you can.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Volunteer Meals

Hurricane Sandy has taught us that volunteer work matters a lot. Helping out anywhere is a plus. If you can cook, that's more of a plus . Fire stations and even senior citizen center kitchens always need an extra hand. Even clean up is most appreciated too.

Most volunteers  usually just help set up food tables and ladle out food .However if you can pitch in with food prep do so. Most firehouses have their own chefs with their own favorite recipes. Some will accept another cook with new dishes. You can make dishes at home and bring them in. Lasagna, baked ziti and any casserole is easily made and transported. Also bringing in hot dogs and hamburgers along with turkey and veggie burgers are another good idea,, if local businesses haven't already donated them. You can make potato salad or baked beans if that's the case.

If your oven is working, then think about baking cookies and muffins for volunteers. Although they may not be nutritionally good, they;re still a rush of much needed sugar for energy. Slice and bake chocolate chips are the easiest to bake en masse. They;re also the easiest to transport too. You can also make slice and bake sugar cookies too. Muffins, whether big or small are great too/ These can be eaten for breakfast too with a hot cup of coffee. You can also vary the recipes for  the large and the mini. Try blueberry or chocolate chip  along with corn and cranberry as well. These , too, can be easily brought to any firehouse or center.

Volunteerism is needed during these tough times. Any way you can, contribute your cooking and baking skills.They will be much appreciated and much needed.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Eating Normally In Abnormal Times

It is hard to maintain a balanced diet when you're more worried about survival. How can you concentrate on eating right let alone eating when dealing with a hurricane' afterath and the trauma it brings?Yet that is what has to be done, Eating normally is the first step to living normally.

This is easily said. When families are dealing more with recovery then eating anything takes a backseat.Luckily there are shelters and Red Cross set ups that do dole out warm and tasty food. It pays to have hot meals three times a day because it does give a boost to both the body and spirit. If you;re still living in a hotel or motel, go to your favorite restaurant, diner or fast food joint. Order your favorite. Worry about the calories later. You need comfort food - which is like a security blanket.

Snacks play an importsnt part in eating normal. There's something soothing about munching on your favorite cookies or crackers. Get yourself a sleeve of cookies or a bag of chips. Luckily even drug store chains like CVS and WalGreens as a huge array of goodies to eat,If you have a regular store in your area, then pick up some bananas or apples. Fruit is a good snack, full of vitamins and minerals, needed for energy, Nix the ice cream.It still isn;t really safe to eat yet. Try boxed chocolate milk instead.

It's hard to eat right during these impossible times. Yet eating normal is the first step toward s living's a step in the right direction - a step towards home.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Fridge Reorganizing

Having the power out has taught many people one thing: don't overstock the refrigerator. You  wind up throwing out things you'd forgotten you've bought (as in my case).The best thing to have is a balanced fridge, one with essentials - not frills.

What are fridge basics? Eggs, milk and juice , the last is important if you have kids. Another basic is butter or if you're more health conscious margarine. Some people feel that bread should be kept cool, however thats' an individual taste.Another must are the condiments,mayo, ketchup and mustard. Mats, whether uncooked or cold cuts are always a good basic to have, however don't overbuy. If the power goes out , the first thing will go is the chicken or the roast beef.

What about the freezer? Ice cream, although considered a frill is always a good thing to have. The problem is that most people like a variety and some people like to have two or three containers. Stick with one ,finish and then go on to  another . Frozen foods are basics too however don;t overstock. These are the first  foods to go bad if there's a power outage. Have one or two , if you;lre really not into them but need them as a quick meal fix. Another idea is only have a few homemade frozen meals, not huge platters  of lasagna or ziti You may forget about these even and it could later lead to a mystery dish.

Fridges are nothing more than cold storage. Don't turn them into full pantries, full of junk. Be prudent when you food shop. Don;t stuff your refrigerator. Keep it on a diet.

Saturday, November 3, 2012

A Good Hot Meal

These days it's hard to have a hot meal, especially if you're still weathering Hurricane Sandy and her after effects. yet whatever the meal, a good solid plate of something hot is beneficial. It helps in  creating more normalcy in a disrupted routine.It also helps to gather your family and friends around just to give thanks and enjoy conversation.

Breakfast is always the most important meal and a good one means a good day ahead. Even having a hot breakfast sandwich at McDonald's is still a hot breakfast, complete with orange juice and fruit. The kids will love it . Most motel rooms have microwaves and you can always microwave eggs and bacon in it as well.Your best bet is a nearby diner. There you can get everything from oatmeal to omelets along with pancakes -a kid favorite .You can also get fresh squeezed juice there and bran muffins. too

Lunch is another matter. Most people will usually settle for a sandwich.If you can settle for burgers which are considered a hot and fun along with a salad, then you've got something good to food places are a good place especially if you have picky eaters in your caravan.You can also consider again the diner or bringing in microwaveable meals.Dinner too can be found in your frozen food section(that is if your supermarket is open)Another idea is trying local pizzerias and Chinese takeout. You can eat healthy in both, along with just eating old fashioned pizza and fried rice, comfort foods much needed in these times.

A good hot meal means everything to those who are displaced.Whether it be  breakfast,lunch or dinner, it means the world to those who are now living in motels,hotel, and even shelter. It;s a way of being at home even though you're not.

Friday, November 2, 2012

Motel Eating

Thanks to Hurricane Sandy I am now lodged in a motel a mile from my house. It has heat (a blessing) and TV(even more of a blessing). However the kitchen is lacking though I'm not complaining. Yet there is a problem with eating right in situations like this.

Most of the stores in my area have been closed now for a few days. That poses a problem for anything fresh from meats to fruits to vegetables. If you're in that situation think about canned. There are enough varieties of food that can be got form a simple tin.Most motels and hotels have microwaves in them,. Buy a few containers (trust me you'll use them later at home) and heat up a veggie or beef  barley soup. Having a hot meal also gives a sense of normalcy if you have kids. Sitting them down to dinner or lunch, even at a motel table brings it home for them.

As for snacking -if it makes you and your family happy then go for it. Usually drugstores like CVS Walgreen's and Rite Aid have the best and still a wide variety of snacks. Crackers are OK  as are pretzels. Any kind of small cracker like goldfish or CVS/ cheddar stars are fun. There are also fruit chews that may cause th e kids to bounce off the walls, but at least they're eating (because of enormous upheavals, kids  may lose their appetites and just swear off food all together)A lot of hotels and motels do have juice bars or juice machines. Keep them away from soda and iced coffee drinks.Boxed milk, whether plain or chocolate flavored ,is a better bet.

These are rough times for all of here in the tri state area. It's hard to have a normal diet, especially when you have to move to a motel or deal with closed groceries or supermarkets. Bear up.Just go with the flow and just eat to survive no matter what you eat.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Halloween Treats Adult Style

Today is Halloween. a time usually reserved for all those sugary sweet. Treats. melisa Clark wrote about it today in her column A Good Appetite. instead of Mars Bars and M&M s she create decadent ,sophisticated treats for the adult palate. She has some amazing recipes. One is a home made caramels but with a twist .They have bourbon. And a crushed pepper in them for bite. These would be a good after dinner treat with a strong, black coffee.Other treats include a bark with a goat cheese. There's also a licorice themed treat based on the Brazilian bonboniere.this requires melting licorice coffee and dark chocolate together. Balls are formed and then rolled or dipped into chocolate sprinkles and jimmies. I imagine these would be great gracing a small bowl of coffee ice cream. Halloween is a wonderful time for treats, both sweet and savory .Try these as a solution to both. They're a wonderful combo.