Things to Consider When Buying a Meat Grinder

meat grinderBeing a chef does not mean just being able to make delicious food but also how you make them. For example if you want to grind the meat, how you grind it will determine the outcome of your cooking. We all love meat and that is why there is increased production of meat grinders with every producer promising to deliver quality services. However, some of the grinders may have some issues that make them fail to deliver customers’ expectations. For this reason, you need to be very selective when buying a meat grinding machine and so you need to be inquisitive enough on the factors to be kept in mind while buying the machine. Some of these factors are discussed below:

 

Quantity of ground meat

The quantity of meat to be grounded is of utmost importance. If the grinder is to be used for commercial purposes, then it needs to be fitted with a powerful motor to be able to process large quantity of meat. If you are a chef running a restaurant, you will need a motor depending on the amount of meat you use every day. These grinders come in different dimensions, designs, and motors and so you need to choose the one that fits your needs. Just like you cannot go buying steam mops for your kitchen without taking some things into consideration, when it comes to meat grinders you also need to put some considerations and quantity is one of them.

 

Budget

Budget is a considerable factor to consider. Some models may be expensive but o the other hand they may prove to be cost effective when it comes to electricity consumption and time. There may be less expensive ones but they may consume more electricity and work slowly. This means that you need to explore much and choose the one that fits your budget. One thing you need to know is that a bad grinder might give you sleepless nights as may not work as you expected them to. To be able to have peace of mind and sleep soundly, like how you can sleep when you buy the best pillow for side sleepers, choose a meat grinder that meets your budget and you will not have to worry about bankruptcy.

 

Maintenance

When buying this product, users need to put maintenance into consideration, especially for individual parts. When using the grinder, you should never leave meat particles on the machine as this can contaminate or cause future problems. For this reason, as you buy, choose the one that is easy to clean on a daily basis.

 

Durability

As you decide to buy a meat grinder, durability needs to be put into consideration. The grinder needs to be made of quality parts and should also be able to endure multiple uses. Some models are made of high quality plastic which reduces production cost, but plates and blades needs to be made of durable materials whereby stainless steel is the best in this matter.

 

Warranties

You need to explore the market and suppliers offering these products and choose the one offering the longest warranty as well as the best after sale service.

 

High quality meat grinder should be able to grind meat without spoiling the softer parts of the meat as well as preserve the actual flavor of the meat. For the grinder to serve you in the best possible way, you need to keep the above factors in mind to be able to choose the best. All the best!

Food wastage in America is on the rise

foodwasteThe US wastes about 40% of all edible food, and this is according to the national resource defense council. According to them, if Americans saves just 15% of the wasted food, it could feed 25 million people. During an Earth Day this year, MSNBC aired “Just Eat It” documentary that seeks to examine the ways that rigid commercial standards for packaging safety leads to food waste to demonstrate how food is being wasted, filmmakers Grant Balwin and Jenny Rustemever give up a grocery shopping for about 6 months and live off that food that would have been thrown away.

Following the film, MSNBC aired a panel discussion featuring newly installed food correspondent Tom Colicchio, who serves as a judge on Bravo’v Top Chef where he offers ways consumers can curb food waste. “Just Eat It” is part of NBC Universal push to try and address environmental issues and to cover a broader set of stories that inspires and moves Americans through it’s progressive lens.” Said company’s spokesperson…

In the year 2012, Americans threw away roughly 35 million tons of food, according to environment protection agency. That is almost 20% more food that US tossed out in the year 2000, 50% more than 1990, and almost three times what America discarded in the year 1960. In 1980, food wastage accounted to less that 10% of the total waste today and this makes up well over a fifth on the century total garbage. This means that US is now throwing away more food than they do with garbage like plastic, glass, metal, or even papers.

About a third of the food produced worldwide is not eaten and the problem is higher in developed countries, where food is seen as more expendable than it is elsewhere. Every year, people from rich countries waste as much food as 222 million tons, which is as much as the entire net food production in sub-Saharan Africa.

The worst thing about this situation is that when Americans are throwing away food, an estimated 1 in every 9 people in the world are starving as a result of insufficient food, including the 200 million people in sub-Saharan Africa and more than 500 million in Asia even in the US where the number is significantly lower, some 14% of the US people still struggle to put food on the table.

The level of food wastage in America suggests that curbing hunger is not a matter of producing more food but preserving and distributing the food that is currently being processed. As the United Nations noted in its report on world hunger, there is enough food to feed all the seven billion people in the world today.

With most of the wasted foods coming from businesses such as restaurants and fast foods, it is about time people strive to make good use of the food they have rather than throwing it away. We have spectacular chefs in many restaurants who might have enough knowledge on food recycling instead of wasting it.

 

 

The Best Foods To Cook When Camping And Prove Yourself To Be Super Chef

chefThere is something about outdoor cooking that excites our senses, especially if you are a chef. From the savory small of grill to the sound of the sizzle and the sight of juicy goodness, I just love cooking; it’s my job and also my hobby. With the ever growing popularity of outdoor cooking with many people choosing to cook when they go camping, there are numerous products that are being designed to make it easier for you to cook outdoors. Even as you pick an insulated water bottle to keep you hydrated when camping, there are awesome backpacking stoves for those who would at times need to warm something or even cook without using charcoal or firewood.

From tailgating to backyard barbeques and camping retreats, you have numerous ways of experiencing the fun and flavor that outdoor cooking has to offer. With so many options when it comes to foods that you can prepare outdoors, your menu’s creativity is unlimited. Here are some of the foods that I enjoy making when camping with my family:

Pitched dinner

After travelling for a long distance and making an effort of pitching our tents, everyone must be tired and so you need to make something that needs heating up only. For my family, we carry Italian meatballs and a tomato sauce from home. All we do is heat it over the campfire in a Billy can. We usually take it with pasta.

Campfire treats

One of the joys of camping is just sitting around the campfire at night, chatting and playing with some beer and snacks. You can make spiced nuts and bring them along and are great to share with friends. If you like; you can hunt down an animal or a bird and roast it over the grill as you have fun with friends.

 

Kid’s bedtime treats

My kids use a lot of energy during the day while playing. Therefore, to slow them down for bedtime I usually make them real hot chocolates. They love it.

 

Something veggie

Cooking outdoors can turn ou to be an endless diet of meat to many. However, for my family, I usually make them some vegetarian meals to make sure they stay healthy.

 

Beans

I usually pack beans that can’t spoil if I do not keep the cool box as cool as it needs to be. I usually carry salsa and cheese to whip up lunch very quickly. As for he beans mixture, I make them at home and so at the campsite I only have to assemble quesadillas and heat them up.

 

Barbeque

You can sauce up burgers and sausages over the campfire with home-made relishes that you have brought with you from home. This is what works for me.

 

Grilled meat

This is what most people enjoy about camping. If you ever went for camping and never grilled anything, then you can agree with me that you did not experience it to the fullest. You can carry some meat along or hunt down animals with a hunting knife for food. It’s fun making delicious meat from an animal that you caught in the forest. Of all the cooking that I do outdoors, grilling is what everyone in my family love and they usually help me out. It’s very fun.

 

Why struggle thinking of what to cook when you go away for camping? The above are simple ways to eat healthy with less hustle while in the wild. Make good use of these tips and enjoy the experience.

The Best Foods That Goes Together With Beer

beer pairingWe all love pairing beer and foods together and we always get excited about a particularly delicious pairing. If I decide to order an Indian Pale with cheese, would that look weird? No, I think it’s all about personal preference after all. To me, wine always has a place in my daily delicacy but a good blue-moon beer can do when I’m pairing food and drink.

Beer is a great match for foods due to the complexity of its flavors. Its ability to offer refreshments and to interact with numerous flavors makes many people love matching beer with delicacies. Even before a meal, you can still take alcoholic drinks as they are known to stimulate appetite.

When pairing beer with food, it all comes down to matching the food flavors to the flavor of the beer. This article will look at several foods and see how you can mix them with beer. Read on and get an advice on how you can match brews with your favorite bites!

Sandwiches, cheese, pizza

Wine and cheese is a universally known pair, but what many people don’t know is that it is also one of the best matches for cheese. Wine may cover up some flavors in cheese off the palate but with beer, whether it is a straight-up cheese patter, sandwich, or a pizza, any beer can go with it.

Pasta, seas-food, chicken

One rule with delicacies such as chicken, salads, fish, or pasta is that you are not supposed to overpower them with beer and so, the lighter is better. A Belgian Saison or a light German with a fish or chicken can be better. if you decide to add creams or sauces, then you need a heavy, richer beer. Pasta is a little bit versatile but you still need to pair them well with similar brews such as American wheat ales.

Fried foods and frites

Even though Belgians make the best frites in the world and are also the largest consumers per person, these salty potato sticks are also Americans staple cuisine. In general, fries are light when it comes to flavor profile and so when trying to match them with beer you should choose brews that will help you cleanse the palate. In general, ask for a beer that will help you cleanse the palate without washing away the flavor, cutting through and bringing out the taste of the frites. The same is recommended for most fried, salty dishes.

Well, now that we are in Easter holiday moods, many are busy preparing for an Easter holiday and maybe you are wondering what to pair with your delicious foods. You do not have to worry. Beer is one drink that you will rarely go wrong with. Just serve beer to your guests as you present them with food and they will have a memorable experience. Holidays come and go, and even Easter will also be over, until next year. But there are more holidays on the way and so you can use this knowledge throughout your life. In my home, we do not wait for a holiday to pair foods with beer, it is what we do on a daily basis.

What Do You Need To Succeed In Your Career As A Chef?

chefCooking is one of the best hobbies to engage into. Being able to make something spectacular from scratch to come up with creative dishes gives us an awesome feel. I remember the first time I made a meal on my own, it was scrambled egg and you can imagine how it felt. I used to keep my mom company whenever she was in the kitchen and I could never let my eyes off the cooker until she was done. This is where I got my inspiration and as time passed by, I realized this is what I was meant to be, a cook. However, for those of you who aspire to engage in culinary arts, it’s good to know that this is not a walk in the park as it involves physical labor, long working hours, and heavy competition, but, the results are rewarding. Here is how you can succeed in this career:

 

Enrolling in a culinary arts institution

Joining a cooking school is not a bad idea. This is where my career begun. Even though I could make numerous creative dishes, I knew that joining a culinary art school could give me a leg-up to becoming a chef and getting hired in a good restaurant. There are numerous programs offered at these schools and you can gain more skills.

Create a pretty resume

By a pretty resume, I don’t mean decorating your resume with all sorts of colors and formats. I mean coming up with an outstanding and job winning resume. Resume writing is such a crucial skill and if you are not sure of your resume writing skills, you need to get an expert do it for you. There are numerous experts capable of crafting numerous resume ranging from resumes for medical receptionist to a high ranking manager resume. I had a friend who was a teacher and she wanted to apply for a job as a substitute teacher, she hired an expert and got an awesome substitute teacher resume that instantly got her the job. To get a cooking job, come up with a resume that presents you as qualified, even if you are a self-taught cook; make a resume that represents you well.

Get a job at a restaurant

Whether you are still in school or not, if you are interested in culinary arts, you need to get exposure to the techniques, conditions, and conditions that surrounds the work. Your first job must not be prestigious. You can apply as a server at your local restaurant since experience is very important in this field. As for me, I started by helping my colleague in his café and that helped me a lot.

Practice at home

Cooking in a restaurant is different from cooking at home, but you need to familiarize yourself with numerous foods and techniques, knives, and other kitchen equipment.

Have a passion for cooking

Not just anyone can become a cook. It takes passion and dedication in flavors, trends, and awareness of the competition to succeed in this career. I used to regularly read cooking magazines, restaurant reviews, profiles of head cooks, and any other literature related to culinary arts to gain a deep understanding of the field. To some people, this is boring but if you have the passion, it is very fun. Besides, what can be more fun than doing what you love doing most?

Well, in conclusion, even as you climb up the ladder, to remain there you need to keep abreast of the latest food trends and keep your culinary skills sharp. Whether it’s the right time or not, you will find yourself being promoted to an executive or even end up opening up a branch of your own. All the best!

Great Food Recipes Using Alcohol That I Love Cooking As A Chef

Cake made with alcoholA lot of people are familiar with desserts that have booze such as the obvious brandy soaked Christmas pudding or the Irish cream cheesecake. I love how my guests look so surprised when I tell them that the starter they have just enjoyed has some alcoholic ingredient. Alcoholic recipes are interesting to cook and fun to serve and cooking using alcohol opens up a whole lot of possibilities.
While cooking using alcohol, much of it burns off, leaving only the flavor but not its intoxicating effects although the degree to this is still controversial, so it’s important to use your own judgment when cooking for young kids or those people who are intolerant to gluten found in most beers.
There are so many recipes out there for cooking with alcohol; however, here are my favorites. You can try them at home too.
Pernod, the liquor has some ‘Marmite’ about it and most people love and hate it in equal measure. Personally I don’t mind either drinking it straight, but I have realized that it adds some unusual flavors in food. Oyster’s Rockefeller is a famous Cajun starter, often associated with New Orleans, but I prefer making it with crab. You will need to buy the best crab you can, since a meat that is less flavored may be overpowered by the other ingredients. This recipe can also be substituted with shrimp.
Bourbon gives faint flavors of caramel, vanilla, charcoal and some light tastes of wood to all your recipes. These flavors are great in both savory and sweet dishes.
Vodka is not just meant for making vodka mixed drinks! Although it has subtle flavors, when used in cooking, it adds some depth to some dishes, one of my favorite being pasta sauces. For a creamy delicious meal, go easy on the tomatoes.
Wine makes really great tasty chicken. Cooking it at very slow temperatures makes it really tender in a slightly sweet cider sauce that’s complemented by some slight salty and peppery dumplings.
Cooking with beer is also great especially Guinness! Nothing beats a tasty Guinness and some steak pie. However, I usually buy more than double the amount needed for cooking since most of it ends in other peoples glasses especially if I’m busy cooking! You can also use leftovers with smoked cheddar cheese which is really tasty.
The art of combining food and alcohol in one dish is really brilliant; there’s is very little room for mistakes when combining these two things. Plus you cannot trade the look on your guest faces when you finally tell them that they are eating whiskey or vodka for their dinner.
Is the alcohol used in cooking food burn off?

Contrary to what most people belief, the alcohol we add to dishes does not completely burn off during cooking. The amount that is retained in a finished dish is usually determined by some factors such as the amount of alcohol added; the heat used while cooking and the cooking and standing time as well as the physical dimensions of the cookware.

If you just want to show off, then flambé is the best way, but if you want to cut back the total amount of alcohol on the finished dish, then the best thing is to simmer or bake the mixture in a large pan that is uncovered for longer periods of time.

The Best Hair Care Tips For Chefs

A chef with nice looking hairBeing a chef, you are exposed to a lot of high temperatures, be it in the summer or in the winter, because you spend most of your time in the kitchen. Hair is a focal part of everybody’s life since it’s among the first things people notice when you meet them for the first time, so as a chef, you should try to get the best hair care you can afford every day.
One thing you should always bear in mind is that the right hair care products will keep your hair looking healthy. The benefits of having beautiful hair cannot be underestimated and I am sure everyone loves to have a beautiful mane. It really feels great to have beautiful shiny hair. Here are some tips that will help you take care of your hair even when you are always in the kitchen.
Protect your hair.
Since as a chef you are always wearing a hat in the kitchen, make sure you have another one to wear when you get out of the kitchen. Avoid exposing your hair to dust, heat and the sun’s rays. Unhealthy eating, pollution and heat can easily damage your hair. Additionally, avoid brushing your hair especially when it’s wet. Wait for it to dry, then you can comb.
Apply Hair masks
Make your own hair masks and use them on your hair since they contain natural and healthy components that provide your hair with nutrients for healthy growth. Use egg yolk, olive oil, baking soda and lime juice to make your homemade hair mask. For better hair growth, use the mask once in a week.
Use shampoo, conditioner, and oil but
It’s very vital that you wash your hair at least twice a week. Use a shampoo that is best for your hair type. For instance, if you have dry hair, it is recommended that you use a shampoo that is only meant for dry hair. After washing your hair, you can use a conditioner then apply your favorite oil. However, you should avoid excessive use of any of these products since they may end up damaging your hair. You can wash your hair with shampoo thrice a week, but apply the conditioner and oil only twice in a week

Avoid strong shampoo
If you really want beautiful hair, then you must make an informed choice when picking your shampoo. If you have oily hair, then pick shampoo for oily hair so that it can be effective. There are so many hair treatment products in the market, but do not just buy them because they are being sold. Know exactly what your hair requires, and get just that. Ensure you also check the ingredients used in making the hair products you are buying.

Eat healthy

Hair is an extension of your body and if your body is lacking in any of the essential minerals, your mane will start to lose its shine and appear dull and boring since it’s the mirror of your health. A regular trim is also vital as it prevents split and damaged ends. For good maintenance, a trim every 6-8 weeks is recommended. Drink plenty of water- about 4 liters a day.

I hope the above tips will help you get your desired hair.

How One Should Groom For A Chef Job Interview

a well groomed chefAn interview is one of those rare occasions where one should really be careful on their grooming. One slight grooming mistake can lead to loss of opportunity. Good grooming creates a good impression towards the interviewer and increases your chances of landing a job. Good looking applicants have higher chances of landing a job than somebody who comes for an interview not properly groomed.
For chefs, going for an interview shoddily groomed may be the last time you set your eyes on the interviewer. It’s important that chefs look groomed due to the nature of their job. If you are going for an interview soon, here are some things that you should bear in mind.
Avoid too much perfume
Go slow on the deodorant or perfume – you could be compromising your chances of landing a job if you go for an interview with too much deodorant or perfume. If the interviewer does not like that particular fragrance, then that may mean your chances of getting the job will be narrowed.
It’s advisable that you go for fragrances that are subtle and do not offend the nose. There is a particular site I love that sells great deodorants for women. You can visit the site and check out some of the deodorants they have nice ones before your interview day.

For women, wear makeup
When going for an interview, it’s important that women put on makeup. Studies show that women who wear make up in interviews are likely going to get the job as compared to plain women. However, just remember a little goes a long way. Do not go overboard. Avoid daring or bright colors. If you do not know how to apply makeup, then it would be wise to walk to a department store and ask for one at the beauty corners. Choose your counters wisely. If the beauty artist is too overdone, chances are that they will do the same on you.

Go for a conservative hairstyle
Don’t use excess hair products, and if you have a trending hairstyle, then make it a little bit toned down unless it’s a job in the creative industry. For men, short neat hair always looks great. For long haired men, just tie it at the back so that it looks neat.
For women, you can curl you hair with a good curling wand so that it doesn’t keep coming to your face. Alternatively, you can tie it at the back if you are think you will fiddle with it.

Keep your nails simple
Just like with makeup, bright colors for the nails are a no-no. You can wear a neutral color or simply buff the nails and leave them that way. Ugly cracked nails for a chef job show that you are careless and it’s not hygienic for a person who will always keep handling food.

Watch your mouth
Bad breath is a put off in normal situations, worse still in an interview. Brush your teeth thoroughly and then rinse with a mouth wash. To be safe, carry some mint and pop it when you are almost getting to the interview room. Fresh breath leaves a great impression especially in this industry.
That’s all! All the best in your interview.

My Favorite Fillet Knife

Knives are different just as people are. A knife that works for you may not work for me. It’s all about how you feel and what kind of knife best suits you. Some people are left handed meaning that although they may want to try out some knives, they may just not work for them. 
Kitchen_knifeI personally love the Wushof Flexible Fillet Knife. It’s made in Germany and it comes with a lifetime warranty from the manufacturers. It has a very narrow blade that is great when filleting both small and large fish. Its flexible design is good for moving around small bones in fish without agonizing about breaking them. The knife’s blade is made of high carbon stainless steel alloy and it very easy to sharpen. The handle cannot easily break because it’s made from composite material with a very smooth finish.

The Ergo Chef Pro Series 7.5 is also another great knife. This knife is very flexible and it’s really great for fish filleting. It has a thin blade and a tapered tip that lets you skillfully remove bones from a fish very fast. Although the blade is very thin, it’s strong and durable. The handle is great and easy to work with, and comfortable so you do not strain your hands or wrist.

I have also tried the 7-in. Precision Series Slicing Knife by Calphalon and I must say it is a great knife too! Its handles are uniquely in built and they are labeled so you can easily pick it from a bunch of cutlery. This knife’s blades stay sharper for longer periods when compared to other types of fillet knives and they deliver excellent performance when filleting your fish. It’s especially good if you are filleting big fish although it does an excellent job on small fish.

If you regularly cook whole fish, picking a good fillet knife is critical so as to avoid any kitchen accidents, you can find more top recommendations at inmykitchen.org. A good fillet knife must have a very comfortable handle that can be gripped even when the knife is slippery and a top notch steel blade with good edge retention. This is a knife you always want to stay razor shape.

Things You eat but should not feed your dog with

dogfoodI love to cook, and I love to share the food I cook. When I’m at home, I have no customers to serve. So I sometime want to share my food with my dog. However, some human meals are not good for dogs. Dogs should be fed some specific diet for their meals.

Most dogs love to eat. They particularly love to share our meals. Being a faithful companion, the temptation of feeding our pets with the same food we eat is high. The dogs will comfortably eat our meal. Sincerely, it is not a bad idea to share a meal with your loved pet. However, some foods are not good for dogs. Most important, the dogs should not be fed entirely on human food.

The animals can suffer complications if fed with some human food. Some of the complications may lead to the death of the animals.

Why stick to the right dog food diet 

Our body systems and nutrient needs vary form that of dogs. That is why, people are encouraged to give their dogs the right meal. There are particular combinations of nutrients that are important for dogs that are not available in human food. Feeding the dogs purely on peoples meals can affect their lives and health.

The chemical composition of a dog stomach varies from the human stomach. The level of acidity of the stomach varies. If the dogs eat meals that are not intended for them, they may face challenges associated with chemical reactions of the food and the content of their stomach. Let us go through a number things You eat but should not feed your dog

Avocado 

Avocado contains a chemical substance known as persin. This chemical is toxic to dogs. It may cause mild stomach upsets. If a dog ingests an avocado, it may suffer gastrointestinal track obstruction that will require the attention of a veterinary professional.

Bread dough

The warm nature of the dogs stomach creates an optimized environment for yeast in the dough to expand. The result of the expansion include decreased blood flow to the stomach wall and ultimately death of tissue. In worse scenario, the expanded stomach may squeeze the diaphragm causing breathing difficulties. The formation of alcohol in the process cannot be ignored. Raw bread dough should not be offered to dogs under any condition.

Chocolate 

If you feed your dog chocolate candy, cookies, brownies or any other human meal that contain chocolate, expect the animal to suffer chocolate intoxication. The situation comes as a result of the effect of caffeine and theobromine. The methylxanthines makes the dog have server agitation, muscle tremors, and irregular heart rhythm. In Sevier situation, expect high body temperatures, seizures, and death. If you see signs of restlessness, visit a vet immediately.

Others are: Macadamia nuts, grapes, raisins, hops, ethanol, moldy foods, onions, garlic, and xylitol should not be fed to the dogs. High quantities of these foods are harmful to the dog’s health. If you do not know what is contained in a particular food, do not give it to your pet. If any of the mentioned ingredients are contained in the meal, your pet may suffer adverse effects that may lead to death. It is safe and appropriate to stick to the dog meals.