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Category Archives: What’s new
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How Carbon Monoxide Kills You
This is a sobering read that I found at the chemistry.about.com website.
How Carbon Monoxide Kills You:
When you breathe in carbon monoxide, it enters your lungs and binds to the hemoglobin in your red blood cells. The problem is that hemoglobin binds to carbon monoxide over oxygen, so as the level of carbon monoxide increases, the amount of oxygen your blood carries to your cells decreases. This leads to oxygen starvation or hypoxia.
At low concentrations, the symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning resemble the flu: headache, nausea, fatigue. Continued exposure or higher concentrations can lead to confusion, dizziness, weakness, drowsiness, severe headache, and fainting. If the brain doesn’t get enough oxygen, carbon monoxide exposure can lead to unconsciousness, coma, permanent brain damage, and death. The effects can become deadly within minutes, but long-term low-level exposure is not uncommon and leads to organ damage, disease, and a slower death.
Infants, children, and pets are more susceptible to the effects of carbon monoxide than adults, so they are at greater risk for poisoning and death. Long term exposure can lead to neurological and circulatory system damage, even when the levels aren’t high enough to produce a significant effect in adults.
For the full document click here if you can bear to read more.
Now you may wonder why on earth I found myself on a chemistry website reading how this perfect killer can actually kill you. The reason was a troubling story from my parents that although having a silver lining was still a scary wake up type of call. They are blessed with the joy of living in a place where an open working fireplace is allowed. They enjoy and while their long dark cold winter nights away by snuggling up to a real fire and staring at the dance of the flames, mesmerising as they can be. However unbeknown to them some local birdlife had decided that the chimney pot on my parents’ roof looked like the ideal spot to build their dream nest. This set up the scenario for the potential murder of my parents. It was only by the sheer luck of my sister happening to choose that particular moment to visit my parents. She knocked politely as you do, no response, so ventured inside to find my parents asleep and unresponsive, hit the panic button! Doctors, hospitals and sometime later they are ok, thankfully, but that story was way, way to close for comfort.
Carbon Monoxide is scary stuff, so it is important for every home to have their own CO detector.
There are several warning signs in your home that could mean you have a carbon monoxide issue. Here are a few things to look out for:
- The flame on your cooker should be crisp and blue. Yellow or orange flames mean you need to get your cooker checked
- Dark staining around or on appliances
- Sooty marks on the walls around boilers, stoves or the cover of gas fires
- Pilot lights that frequently go out
- Increased condensation inside windows
If you want to know more about Carbon Monoxide and how to effectively protect your home please visit Corgi HomePlan.
Carbon Monoxide gas is a colourless and odourless silent killer.
Protect yourself and your family now.
Filed under What's new
Giveaway – BBC Good Food Eat Well Show Tickets
The brand new BBC Good Food Eat Well Show will launch at Olympia London on 27 February and will last for three days and showcase 100 exhibitors selling their range of products, including superfoods and delicacies.
This new event, part of the BBC Good Food Show portfolio, is dedicated to showcasing healthy food brands, products and producers, and will demonstrate to visitors how they can achieve a balance between living a healthy lifestyle and maintaining a passion for good food.
One of the highlights of the show is the Healthy Kitchen which will host an impressive line-up of celebrities, chefs and professionals demonstrating how easy it is to prepare healthy and good food. The schedule includes personalities such as Davina McCall, Lorraine Pascale, Hemsley + Hemsley, Marcus Bean and Jenni Falconer.
Another feature, the Eat Well Forum is dedicated to key diet and lifestyle challenges, and will play host to a range of vibrant discussions and informative talks on the relationship between food, health and wellbeing.
Visitors can also enjoy the Eat Well Interview Stage, where they can have their questions answered by dietary specialists such as Natasha Corrett, Renee Maguire, Dale Pinnock and Rachel De Thample. Visitors will also be given the opportunity to have their books signed at the WHSmith stand.
In addition to the interview stage, they’re delighted to be hosting some 1-2-1 sessions with qualified dieticians throughout the show. The sessions offer a range of different advice and guidance, and will be held in a private room on the show floor.
The show will host an excellent line up of chefs, experts and professional nutritionists. Take a look at the Who’s there list to see who’s appearing where and when!
To get your ticket please visit Ticket Info Tab.
Standard Admission is £15.00 – this will allow you a full days entrance to the show on a specific day (10am to 6pm). Children aged 6-15 pay half the adult rate and under 5s are free. Over 65s and full time students with ID save £2 off the adult rate. For 20% discount please use MV11 code.
I have one pair of tickets for Friday (27/02/2015) or Sunday (1/03/2015) to give away to one of my readers. To be in chance of winning those ticket please leave a comment answering the question: Why would you like to visit the BBC Good Food Eat Well Show?
We will be most likely attending on Friday, so I might see you there!
1. Open to UK readers only.
2. One entry per person – leave a blog comment answering the question as stated above.
3. There will be 1 winner in total.
4. The winner will receive one pair of Friday or Sunday show tickets. The tickets will be shipped to a UK address as provided by the winner.
5. The winner will be picked at random and informed within 24hours via email.
6. The winner will have 2 working days to claim the prize, after this time, a new winner will be selected.
7. Closing date is Sunday 15/02/2015 at 23:59pm, any entry made after this time will not be counted.
ThePrizeFinder – UK Competitions
Loquax – Home of The Lucky Duck
SuperLucky Blog Giveaways Linky
Filed under Giveaways, What's new
Getting Ready for Valentine’s Day
Valentine’s Day is almost upon us, which means it is time to get ready.
I am not planning anything extravagant but some little surprises during the day are very much in order.
First thing first – Setting the scene
Human Touch – Love Pillow Cases sent me one of their lovely pillow case sets. They will be perfect for setting the scene for a romantic evening / night plus I am sure they will put a smile on our faces every morning we wake up and look at them.
There are 12 lovely, cute and extremely adorable designs to pick from. Human Touch – Love Pillow Cases are a great way of extending the magic of Valentine’s Day for longer.
To make a day even more special why not start it with a nice cup of coffee from a Love Mug?
Cook that special breakfast
This part still needs some thinking and planning. I have a few options on the short list. The Valentine Breakfast Pinterest board was very helpful but I still couldn’t decide: sweet or sour.
Hide a little surprise in their lunch box
Did you hear about Joy Maker? The Cadbury website offers an option of making your very own chocolate bar. The process is easy and very straightforward and as a result you get a chocolate bar with a personalised message of your choice (on the wrapper only to be precise). I think that this would be a very nice touch, which would definitely put a smile on Marks face, so I am getting it made.
A special gift which will last a lifetime
I am still stuck for ideas and would consider any help you can offer. I don’t plan on getting anything huge (budget wise) but something special and thoughtful would be ideal. I found a Name A Star kit, which allows you, among other things, to name a star (surprise, surprise…). I think that Mark would really like that.
How is your preparation going in the run up to Valentine’s Day?
Are you planning something special that’s out of the ordinary?
Filed under What's new
Infographic: The importance of a good night’s sleep
“I love sleep. My life has the tendency to fall apart when I’m awake, you know?”
― Ernest Hemingway
I like this quote.
I love sleep too and the same as Ernest Hemingway, sometimes I feel that everything is falling apart once I am up. But this isn’t really true is it?
Sleep gives us strength, it gives is the ability to battle through the day so we can actually “make it”. Sleep is an essential part of our daily circle and without it we simply cannot function properly.
So the simple solution to making our life better is getting more sleep, more good quality sleep. Apparently most adult humans need eight hours of sleep a night to be fully rested and functional. That’s a lot of hours spent sleeping… but as it is needed we should really make the most of it.
Oldrids & Downtown commissioned this great infographic to show the importance of a good night’s sleep. It illustrates the basic rules for a good night sleep, stages of sleep, effects of sleep deprivation and my favourite part: relaxation techniques for a better sleep.
Do you sleep peacefully through the night?
I personally struggle with sleep. I have problems falling to sleep, most likely because I can’t switch off. I can lie there for hours thinking about mundane stuff which will have to be done the next day or about any problems I have at the time, trying to find a solution to fix it. I wish my sleep was deeper so that every little squeak in the house wouldn’t wake me up. I wish my sleep was longer… once I finally get to sleep I have troubles with waking up… probably even more than with going to sleep. Waking up for me is the worst part of the day; most days I just want to pull the quilt over my head, hide in my cocoon and go back to sleep but I can’t…
So any tips on how to improve my sleep or the quality of it are very welcome.
Please share with me if you know something that could help me sleep better.
* This infographic has been designed on behalf of Oldrids & Downtown.
Filed under Infographic, What's new
Flavour profiles – what goes well with what?
After my successful Chocolate and Orange Drizzle Cake experiment I have developed a taste for more… as in more experimentation with different flavours.
Right now I have 6 ripe kiwi fruits which I would love to turn into a cake.
I was just browsing the net in search of something to complement the kiwi flavour when I stumbled upon Nouveau Raw website and their fantastic Flavour profiles that pair well in recipes article.
Experiments in the kitchen are fun but it is nice to have something to check if your picked flavours will pair well.
Nouveau Raw created this awesome chart which I will shamelessly re-blog here for you.
- Allspice pairs well with: apples, beets, cabbage, caramel, cardamom, cinnamon, cloves, coriander, ginger, juniper, mace, mustard, nuts, nutmeg, onions, pears, pumpkin, root vegetables, yams.
- Almond pairs well with: apple, apricot, banana, caramel, cherry, coffee, fig, honey, orange, peach, pear, plum
- Anice pairs well with: apples, beets, caramel, carrots, chocolate, citrus, cinnamon, coconut, coriander, cranberry, fennel, figs, fish, garlic, peaches, pomegranates, pumpkin
- Apple pairs well with: caramel, cardamom, chestnut, cinnamon, cranberry, currant, ginger, hazelnut, mango, maple, rosemary, walnut
- Apricot pairs well with: almond, black pepper, caramel, cardamom, ginger, hazelnut, honey, orange, peach, vanilla, plum
- Asian Pear pairs well with: almond, apple, black pepper, cinnamon, ginger, honey, macadamia, nutmeg, raisin, vanilla
- Banana pairs well with: caramel, cherry, chocolate, cinnamon, coffee, ginger, hazelnut, honey, mango, molasses, papaya
- Basil pairs well with: capers, chives, cilantro, garlic, marjoram, oregano, mint, onion, parsley, rosemary, thyme, artichokes, eggplant, green vegetables, mushrooms, olives, Sweet Basil is the best basil for pesto and tomato salads.
- Bay leaf pairs well with: artichokes, beans, garlic, grains, juniper, lentils, marjoram, mushrooms, nuts, oregano, parsley, potatoes, sage, savory, thyme and tomatoes
- Beets pair well with: Apples, basil, beef, butter, cabbage, caraway seeds, carrots, cheese, chives, dill, hard-boiled eggs, garlic, honey, horseradish, lemon, mint, mustard, olive oil, onions, orange, pepper, pistachios, salt
- Blackberry pairs well with: apricot, black pepper, cinnamon, citrus, hazelnut, lemon, other berries, peach, plum
- Blood Orange pairs well with: almond, cardamom, chocolate, cinnamon, clove, fig, ginger, honey, other citrus
- Blueberry pairs well with: other berries, cardamom, mango, lemon, hazelnut, ginger, fig, lavender, other citrus
- Butternut Squash pairs well with: sage and rosemary, either of which can be used fresh or in dried form. The warm “pie spices” of nutmeg and ginger are a good match for butternut squash, both underlining and balancing its sweetness. For a savory approach, consider cumin. Chilies provide sweet-and-spicy flavor combination. The naturally sweet taste of butternut squash is enhanced when paired with fruit, such as fresh and dried apples, fresh pear, orange juice and dried cranberries.
- Caraway pairs well with: apples, beets, broccoli, cabbage, pears, sauerkraut, allspice, almonds, cardamom, chili, cinnamon, coriander, dill, fennel seed, juniper berry, onion, mushrooms, garlic, oregano, parsley, thyme.
- Cardamom pairs well with: apples, bananas, beans, caramel, citrus fruit, coconut, ice creams, nuts, mango, allspice, almond, cardamom, chili, cinnamon, clove, coriander, cumin, curry, dates, fennel seed, ginger, mustard, paprika, pears, pepper, star anise, turmeric, saffron
- Carrot pairs well with: anise, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, walnut
- Celery pairs well with: cabbage, cilantro, cucumber, cumin, garlic, ginger, mustard, onion, parsley, pepper, rosemary, sage, tomatoes, thyme
- Celery Seed pairs well with: tomatoes, allspice, black pepper, caraway, chili, cinnamon coriander, cumin, fennel seed, ginger, sage, turmeric
- Cherry pairs well with: apricot, black pepper, chocolate, citrus, nectarine, peach, plum, vanilla
- Chestnut pairs well with: apple, caramel, chocolate, coffee, pear, vanilla
- Chives pair well with: asparagus, basil, cheese, cilantro, dill, fennel, green vegetables, horseradish, mushrooms, olives, paprika, pasta, parsley, tarragon
- Chocolate pairs well with: oranges, nuts, Allspice, almond, aniseed, cinnamon, clove, curry leaf, fennel seed, garlic, ginger, lemongrass, mint, nutmeg, onion, vanilla
- Cilantro (coriander) pairs well with: apples, apricot, avocados, berries, cherries, citrus, coconut, nectarine, peach, plum, tropical fruit, Allspice, Cardamom, clove, cumin, curry, dates, fennel seed, garlic, ginger, mint, sun-dried tomato, turmeric, tomatoes.
- Cinnamon pairs well with: allspice, apples, bananas, cantaloupe, caraway, cardamom, clove, cacao, chilies, caramel, cauliflower, chocolate, corn, curries, coffee, coriander, cranberry, cumin, dates, figs, ginger, mint, nutmeg, grapes, oranges, peaches, pears, winter squash, star anise, sun-dried tomatoes, tamarind, turmeric, vanilla
- Chervil pairs well with: artichokes, asparagus, carrots, chives, citrus, grains, green beans, leafy vegetables, mushrooms, nuts, onions, parsley, tarragon, thyme,and vinegar
- Clove pairs well with: allspice, apples, beets, bay leaf, cakes, cardamom, cacao, carrots, chocolate, citrus, coriander, cumin, curry, fennel, ginger, mace, nutmeg, orange, peaches, pineapple, pumpkin, red cabbage, star anise, tamarind, turmeric,vanilla
- Coconut pairs well with: Allspice, banana, basil, black pepper, Brazil nut, caramel, chocolate, citrus, cumin, curry leaf, garlic, ginger, guava, lemongrass, passionfruit, pineapple, sun-dried, tomato, turmeric, vanilla
- Coriander pairs well with: allspice, apples, bananas, beans, chili, cilantro, cinnamon, citrus, cloves, cumin, curry, fennel, fish, garlic, ginger, mace, mint, mushrooms, nutmeg, onion, parsley,
- Cranberry pairs well with: apple, chocolate, cinnamon, citrus, mango, mint, pear
- Cumin pairs well with: allspice, anise, avocados, bay leaf, beans, cabbage, cardamom, cilantro, cinnamon, citrus, coconut, coriander, cucumber, curry, fennel, fenugreek, garlic, ginger, lentils, mace, onion, nutmeg, parsley, tomatoes
- Currants, Black and Red, pairs well with: cassis, chocolate, citrus
- Dill pairs well with: anise, basil, cabbage, capers, caraway, carrots, chives, coriander, cucumbers, cumin, fennel, garlic, ginger, horseradish, mint, mustard, oregano, onion, paprika, parsley
- Elderberry pairs well with: apricot, fig, honey, lemon, mandarin, other berries, peach, plum
- Fennel pairs well with: anise, artichokes, basil, beans, cabbage, cheese, cilantro, cinnamon, cucumber, cumin, dill, eggplant, fenugreek, figs, garlic, lemon balm, lentils, mint, olives, onion, oregano, parsley, pork, thyme, tomatoes
- Fig pairs well with: almond, black pepper, cinnamon, citrus, hazelnut, pear, vanilla
- Garlic pairs well with: basil, caraway, chili, coriander, cumin, curry leaf, marjoram, mint, mustard seed, oregano, parsley, rosemary, sun-dried tomato, thyme
- Ginger pairs well with: allspice, almond, anise, apple, apricot, banana,basil, berries, Brazil nut, caramel, carrots, chives, chocolate, cilantro, cinnamon, citrus,cloves, coconut, coriander, cranberry, cumin, curry, dates, fennel, grape, hazelnut, passion fruit, peach, pear, pineapple, plum, nutmeg, onion, peaches, pears, pepper, pumpkin, raisins, turmeric, vanilla
- Gooseberry pairs well with: citrus, hazelnut, honey, other berries, white chocolate
- Grape pairs well with: chocolate, citrus, fig, honey, ginger, raisin
- Grapefruit pairs well with: basil, black pepper, caramel, citrus, mint, rosemary, thyme, tropical fruit, vanilla
- Guava pairs well with: citrus, lime, coconut, huckleberry, kaffir leaf, pineapple, strawberry, tropical fruit
- Hazelnut pairs well with: apple, apricot, banana, berries, caramel, cherry, chocolate, citrus, fig, mandarin, peach, pear, plum
- Jicama pairs well with: acidic fruits and juices such as lime, lemon and orange juice. Red pepper and hot pepper sauce, avocado, cilantro, cucumber and grapefruit.
- Kaffir Leaf pairs well with: banana, citrus, coconut, lemongrass, tropical fruit, watermelon
- Kiwi pairs well with: apple, banana, berries, cherry, citrus, coconut, mango, tropical fruit
- Kumquat pairs well with: berries, cherry, chocolate, cinnamon, coffee, persimmon, plum
- Lavender pairs well with: chocolate, lemon, blueberries, vanilla, thyme
- Lemon pairs well with: apricot, berries, black pepper, cardamom, cherry, citrus, ginger, nectarine, peach, plum, prickly pear, tropical fruit
- Lemongrass pairs well with: cherry, berries, citrus, coconut, ginger, guava, kaffir leaf, coconut, tropical fruit, vanilla
- Lime pairs well with: apple, berries, cherry, ginger, papaya, plum, strawberry, tropical fruit
- Lychee pairs well with: citrus, ginger, gooseberry, tropical fruit, vanilla
- Mace pairs well with: allspice, asparagus, beans, cabbage, carrots, cheese, cinnamon, cloves, coffee, cranberries, cumin, ginger, nutmeg, peaches, pumpkin, potatoes, vanilla,
- Mandarin pairs well with: cardamom, cherry, chocolate, cinnamon, coffee, fig, ginger, nutmeg, tropical fruits, vanilla, star anise
- Mango pairs well with: apple, banana, berries, caramel, citrus, coconut, melon, tropical fruits, vanilla, cinnamon
- Marjoram pairs well with: artichokes, basil, cinnamon, cumin, eggplant, fennel, garlic, mushrooms, onion, oregano, parsley, thyme
- Melon pairs well with: berries, citrus, lemongrass, lemon verbena
- Nutmeg pairs well with: allspice, asparagus, cabbage, cardamom, carrots, cinnamon, cloves, coffee, coriander, cranberries, cumin, ginger, mace, onion, peaches, pumpkin, thyme, vanilla
- Orange pairs well with: almonds, basil, berries, brandy, cherry, chocolate, cilantro, cinnamon, coffee, cranberry, fig, ginger, grape, hazelnut, mint, nutmeg, persimmon, pineapple, vanilla
- Oregano pairs well with: basil, cinnamon, cumin, eggplant, fennel, garlic, marjoram, mushrooms, onion, parsley, thyme, tomatoes
- Paprika pairs well with: allspice, caraway, cardamom, garlic, ginger, legumes, oregano, parsley, rosemary, saffron, thyme, turmeric, vegetables
- Papaya pairs well with: citrus, black pepper, lime, mango, tropical fruit
- Parsley pairs well with: basil, bay leaf, chives, dill, garlic, marjoram, mushrooms, grains, onion, oregano,thyme, tomatoes
- Pear pairs well with: almond, apple, caramel, chestnut, chocolate, cinnamon, citrus, ginger, hazelnut, vanilla, walnut
- Persimmon pairs well with: apple, black pepper, cinnamon, citrus, kumquat, pear
- Pineapple pairs well with: basil, caramel, cilantro, coconut, macadamia, rosemary, tropical fruit
- Plum pairs well with: almond, cinnamon, citrus, chestnut, black pepper, hazelnut, honey, vanilla
- Pomegranate pairs well with: apple, citrus, cucumber, mint, tropical fruit
- Prickly Pear pairs well with: citrus, lime, tomatillo, tropical fruit
- Raspberry pairs well with: apricot, cinnamon, citrus, ginger, lemon, nectarine, other berries, peach, plum, rhubarb, thyme, vanilla
- Rose water pairs well with: saffron, cardamom,jasmine, almonds, pistachios and coconuts.
- Rosemary pairs well with: apples, asparagus, basil, citrus, cranberry, fennel, garlic, grains, mushrooms, marjoram, onion, oregano, parsley, thyme, tomatoes
- Rhubarb pairs well with: apple, apricot, berries, black pepper, citrus, ginger, nectarine, peach, plum, strawberry
- Sage pears well with: apples, bay leaf, capers, caraway, celery, citrus, garlic, ginger, marjoram, onions, paprika, parsley, rosemary, thyme, tomatoes
- Sesame pairs well with: citrus, garlic, ginger, thyme
- Sorrel pairs well with: chives, beans, leafy greens, oregano, parsley, thyme, and squash
- Strawberry pairs well with: apple, black pepper, chocolate, citrus, coriander, mint, rhubarb, vanilla
- Thyme pairs well with: bananas, basil, bay leaf, beans, carrots, citrus, dill, garlic, mint, mushrooms, onion, oregano, parsley, sage
- Tomatillo pairs well with: berries, citrus, mango, prickly pear, tropical fruit
- Walnut pairs well with: apple, apricot, banana, caramel, chocolate, cinnamon, nectarine, peach, pear, plum, rum
I hope you will find this chart as useful as I am.
Filed under What's cooking, What's new
What makes Sydney so dreamy?
There are a lot of wonderful places around the globe and some of them stick in our memories more than others. Some we simply like some we don’t but there are also the ones we love; the ones that given the opportunity we would never leave; the ones where we could see ourselves living happily ever after…
One of those places for me is Sydney.
So why is Sydney so dreamy you might ask?
Well… there is the outstanding architecture, weather to die for, good food and even better drinks, 100s of great pubs with live music and so on and so on… but once you actually look behind the obvious, there are few hidden reasons which make Sydney one of the kind.
Jogging along Port Jackson Bay
Wide sidewalks with stunning views of the harbour and the sea breeze wafting over you. This is the perfect place to unwind after a busy day. You are still seeing and feeling the city, but at the same time you are in sync with nature. There is something magical about that. It is a deep soul stirring moment that is quite hard to describe. The best time for a jog is just before sunset, when the “white sails” of Opera House are changing its colours and the whole city is slowly lighting up ready for the night.
Coastal walk form Coogee to Bondi Beach
One of the most wonderful things about Sydney is its location. Living there you really have no need for holidays. All you have to do is to start walking… The Coastal walk form Coogee to Bondi Beach takes about 2 hours; during this time you can see some beautiful nature, feel the warm sand under your feet, admire the sharp cliffs but you can also see this magnificent city with a whole new perspective. Far away from the noise of the city centre, from our busy lives and daily troubles… this walk can give you power and inner peace and should you make it to Bondi Beach you can admire surfers battling the force of nature.
Sydney Mardi Gras
In general Mardi Gras refers to events during Carnival, but the Sydney Mardi Gras is a bit different. The Sydney Mardi Gras celebrates gay rights. The Sydney Mardi Gras Parade is one of a kind, not only is the organization perfect but the atmosphere is truly wonderful’ you can really feel the love. This festival really underlines the character of the people of this city, their open-mindedness, tolerance and love of good times!
*This post is my entry into “A Tale of three Cities” competition run by Accor
Filed under What's new
7 Top Tips How to Reduce Food Waste
Apparently an average European citizen wastes 179kg of food a year. We throw out almost 20% of the food we buy. This is a horrendous waste!
The food waste is not only limited to our households. Supermarkets and restaurants waste an even higher percentage of food, but there isn’t a lot we can do about it… We can however take a look at our “wasting” routine and try to do something about it.
We are not the most innocent family when it comes to reducing food waste, this is why I did some thinking and put a plan in place to help us reduce our food waste.
Know what you already have
This might sounds funny but do you really know what you have in your cupboards? I thought I did but I was wrong. I tend to “stock up” on things when they are on a special offer and at times I simply forget about them later on. Like the time I bought four large jars of mayonnaise despite still having two in my pantry (luckily they were still in date so nothing was wasted, we just had a lot of salads that month).
Anyway knowing what you already have in the cupboard is the key to success. It will allow you to avoid double buying but also it will help you to plan meals ahead.
Buy local, buy smart
Large superstore are designed to make us spend more; make us buy stuff we don’t really need; make us buy too much. Buying local will help us to buy only what we need and when we need it.
Going shopping with a shopping list is a great way of sticking to what we need to buy, if we can stick to our pre-written shopping list of course.
Learn to read labels
Not all food that has passed its “label date” is actually out of date. A lot of foods have labels which are actually design as recommendations for the store selling them.
Sell-by date – a date printed on the packaging of perishable goods, indicating the date after which the goods should not be offered for sale. This doesn’t mean they can’t be eaten. Sell-by date can be found for example on fresh cakes or pastries. Store can’t sell them past the date but we can still enjoy them 🙂
Best before – the length of time a packaged food will last without deteriorating. Food eaten after “best before” date is perfectly safe to eat, it might just not be “perfectly perfect”; its taste, texture, aroma or appearance might start to change slightly.
Use-by date – refers to safety and are the required form of date mark for foods considered to be highly perishable from a microbiological point of view. This is the only label we should be really concern about and should try to avoid products which have passed their use-by date.
Learn how to store food properly
A lot of food goes to waste due to poor storage. Investing in a good, clever storage solution will help us save money (and a lot of food) in the long run. A nice set of plastic air-tight containers (like the ones I reviewed for you in the past from Addis) or simple Fresha bags, which are design to keep your food fresh for up to 25% longer are perfect food storage solutions. They will help your food stay fresh for longer, giving you more time to enjoy it.
Storage containers are just one side to the proper storage solution… the other is correct fridge placement. When unpacking new grocery shopping, move your “old” food to the front of the fridge. This way you will not forget about that pack of half eaten butter or an already opened bottle of milk.
Learn to experiment in the kitchen
I must agree that recipes are made to be followed but I am also a believer in variety and freedom. Product substitution might not be ideal every time but you never know what your new “upgraded” dish will taste like until you try it. Experimenting in the kitchen is a great way of “using” all the odd things we have left. Challenge yourself and cook once a week a “what’s left in my fridge” dinner. You might be surprised with the results. To give you an idea on what sort of thing we create, check my “Something from Nothing Dinner” post.
Learn to use leftovers
Big portion of the food ending up in the bin come from leftovers… Depending on the type of leftovers, they can be eaten the next day, turned into a new meal or frozen, to be consumed at a later date. Very often you can find the dish gets better with time, so don’t be scared of a “leftovers” dinner.
Freezing it on the day is a great way of avoiding binning it a few days later. Just remember to clearly label your meals, so you know exactly what’s inside and what date you put it there.
Donate it, jar it or compost it
No matter how careful we will be, there will always be a time when we have too much food on our hands. Depending on the type of food we can donate it to a local food bank or try your hand at a new skill and re-make it for future use in the months to come, for example turning fruit and veggies into pickles and chutneys.
Last summer when we went to Poland we drove back to the UK with three cases of fresh apples. We knew that we will not be able to eat them all, so I turned some into jars of grated apples, ready to become a filling in my Apple Pie.
And when we have food which still needs to go to the bin, compost it. Instead of putting it to the bin, give it a second life and turn it into a useful resource… your garden will be truly thankful for it 😉
Anything you would add into my list?
Filed under Home and Garden, What's new
Dettol Baby Blanket Donation – Deadline Extended
Good news everyone – Dettol Baby Blanket Donation has had its deadline extended.
I know I’ve already shared this campaign with you a few times but if you didn’t manage to take part in it yet, you still have a few weeks left to do so. The new deadline has been moved to mid February.
Keep the memories, not the bacteria and help to raise money for children’s health charity Sparks.
Donate a blanket today by sending it to:
Dettol Baby Blanket Donation
Balcombe Place Stables
Dettol Anti-bacterial Laundry Cleanser and UK children’s medical research charity, Sparks, are working together to make a difference to children’s health both at home and abroad. They are asking you to help make a difference to young lives by donating your used baby blankets and ‘keep the memories, not the bacteria’. Dettol Anti-bacterial Laundry Cleanser has pledged to donate £1 for every blanket collected to children’s medical research charity, Sparks. Sparks want to raise much needed funds for UK families with children who are affected by serious illness or disability.
This is a really good cause. Join us and help today.
And if you have already donated a blanket why not get engaged on social media and spread the word? You can follow Dettol Baby Blanket @DettolBlanket, Sparks Charity @SparksCharity and Rachel Stevens @MSRachelStevens and use the hash tag #sharethememories
And if you have not become involved just yet, to give you a bit of an incentive Dettol Baby Blanket is running a small giveaway. Tell them about your favourite baby blanket memory and you could win a bottle of Dettol Antibacterial Laundry Cleanser 🙂
Tell us about your favourite baby blanket memory and you could #win a bottle of Dettol Antibacterial Laundry Cleanser #sharethememories
— Dettol Baby Blanket (@DettolBlanket) January 19, 2015
Dettol Antibacterial Laundry Cleanser kills 99.9% of bacteria at 30°C. Keep the memories, not the bacteria! Get involved now!
Send your blanket to Dettol Baby Blanket Donation and help spread the word. The more people get involved, the more kids we can help.
Filed under What's new
Parragon Book Buddy – Food Heroes “Use Your Noodle”
I don’t know about you but I love noodles. Now it isn’t my go to food when thinking about what shall we eat tonight as the option gets drowned out with other choices in my planning stage, but and it is a big but, when I do actually have them I really, really love them. So why does this dilemma exist there is a food I love but my thoughts do not offer it up as a solution to the daily what shall we eat conundrum. Well as it turns out it’s all about ideas regarding the different ways of preparing them, how do I know this you may wonder, I have a little helper in my corner 🙂 Parragon books sent me a “Use Your Noodle” cookbook and I am very grateful.
This cookbook is packed with yummy recipes from all over the world covering different types of noodles.
The cookbooks’ contents are split into four main chapters:
A Bird in the Hand – covering all your bird based noodles recipe
From the Farm – covering farm meats like pork or lamb
From the Sea – this part is packed with recipes requiring prawns, cod, tuna and all the other lovely types of fish
Veg Out – the last chapter is for all veggie lovers out there
After reading just a few pages, how easy they are and how amazing they look and taste noodles are on my mind.
In addition to lots of recipes, like all Love Food cookbooks I have had the pleasure to read, “Use Your Noodle” also contains a lot of useful hints and tips. My favourite is the “know your noodle” part.
In just two pages is an easy to understand explanation about many different types of noodles covering such wonders as:
Soba – mainly made from buckwheat flour and did you know the most popular noodles in Japan.
Ramen – this wheat flour noodle is generally treated as a comfort food and used in a variety of broth-based recipes.
Udon – generally thick and white, made with semi whole-wheat flour; they are light and very easy to digest.
Rice – they are made from rice flour and these are my favourite 🙂
Egg – made with wheat flour, water and eggs – they cook fast and are idea as all-purpose noodles.
As I said above the cookbook is packed with a great selection of recipes. As you would expect from Parragon books all the recipes have a clear indication of both preparation and cook times as well as how many people it will serve. Every recipe has a clear ingredients list and easy to follow cooking instructions and best of all you can see a full colour picture of the final dish so you know what you are aiming for.
I have a few favourite picks from the book.
Chicken Noodle Soup
Udon Noodle Stir-Fry with Fish Cake & Ginger
So now when I am out shopping I am always on the hunt for new and exciting noodle options as I plan to get myself a nice selection of noodles to cook with.
Do you like noodles?
What’s your favourite noodle dish.
Food Heroes: Use Your Noodle
Published by Parragon Books Ltd in 2014
Part of Love Food
Number of pages: 128
Paperback; perfect bound
*I received this book for free from Parragon as a part of my Book Buddy pack.
**All pictures in this post are from “Use Your Noodle” cookbook.
Filed under Reviews, What's new