The Best Freezer Containers  To Protect Your Food

Freezer Containers  To Protect Your Food

The better the quality of your food containers, the better your frozen foods will stay fresh. You get what you pay for! Do you really want to throw your food out due to freezer burn or oxidation? Didn’t think so. So get good stuff. Fortunately, not all of the better containers are expensive. Consider aluminum foil and freezer bags for example.

 

What features to look for in freezer containers

Above all else, your containers have to be moisture and vapor proof. That will prevent the freezer burn, keep odors in and prevent oxidation. Be sure the labels say “freezer quality” or “freezer safe.” You should try to keep a variety of container types in supply, such as rigid, plastic or metal containers, as well as flexible ones like freezer bags and aluminum foil. Keeping some disposable bakeware on hand is also a good idea.

 

Types of freezer storage containers

Vacuum sealers-great for long term. Use the bags and vacuum to suck the air right out. You can see the contents and they are great for meat and produce.

 

Silicone pans- a new concept. Great for high or low temps. You can freeze foods and then go straight to the oven. They’re flexible, so use with a cookie sheet.

Freezer bags-everyone knows about these and you can use them for anything. They’re cheap, so just throw them away when you’re done.

 

Glass bakeware containers-have to be freezer grade. Some will crack, but good ones will go straight from freezer to oven. And they’re re-usable.

Metal pans-These do fine in the freezer, but it’s an expensive proposition when your pans can’t be used because they’re in the freezer. These can also go straight to the oven without thawing.

 

Rigid plastic containers- come in a variety of price and quality. Great for freezing liquids. Good ones go from freezer to oven and are dishwasher safe. Some are even oven safe.

 

Aluminum pans-disposable freezer containers and they work great for give away meals. They’re flexible, so use a cookie sheet underneath. Cheap enough to throw away, but you can re-use them if need be.

 

Freezer wrap-new to the market. Similar to Saran Wrap but in a higher grade suitable for the freezer. And you can see what’s in it.

 

Aluminum foil-perfect for covering and wrapping odd shapes. It can be reused and recycled.

 

Freezer paper-kind of like kraft paper with a plastic side. Great for awkward sizes. Butchers actually use it a lot.

 

Not everything is a freezer quality container

Remember, good containers keep food fresh and not all containers will do that. Don’t ever use waxed paper, plastic wrap or plastic bags in the freezer. The plastic bag that your bread comes in just won’t cut it. Good freezer containers are an investment. Slowly build your collection over time.

 

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Fresh Winter Fruit Salad Recipe

Fresh Winter Fruit Salad Recipe

When winter comes around, it’s less common to find really good fresh fruit. Because of that, our diets suffer, and we tend to eat less of the vitamins we need. To help combat that problem, we’ve compiled a list of fruits that are fresh and in season during the winter, and should be easily available through supermarkets.

Buying fruits in season are a better choice for your wallet and palette, providing fresh fruits at their lowest price. You can keep your vitamin intake going strong, and keep your immune system intact through the flu season. Try this fantastic fruit salad, specifically made for winter fruits, to help you get your five servings a day!

 Winter Fruits to Use

You’ll need a healthy mix of oranges, mandarins, kiwifruits, tangerines, pears, and passion fruits. You can also add in pomegranates, persimmons, red bananas, date plums, and dates, if you enjoy those fruits. These are the winter fruits, in season and ready for sale. While some of them are a little off the beaten path, they’re all sweet, and when ripened, give you a healthy dose of vitamins. With the mandarins, oranges, and red bananas, you’ll be getting a large amount of Vitamin C, a great vitamin for keeping your immune system going strong.

Other Fruit Options

If you want, you can add in some year-round fruits that are guaranteed to be a great addition to any salad. Try to add some bananas, apples, papayas, and apricots for a flavorful addition to this salad. With year-round fruits, you’ll be assured of a steady stream of flavors and nutrients. There’s some truth in “an apple a day keeps the doctor away,” after all.

Making the Salad

As for the salad itself, you can blend any and all of the fruits available. Cut them up into pieces that you can easily fit in your mouth, and blend them together using salad tossers or your hands. This fruit will be good to eat for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and every bite in between! See how many meals you can make that will taste great with your new fruit salad, and keep it refrigerated when not in use. For an extra twist of flavor, squeeze a bit of lemon juice over your salad before refrigeration. Not only does this make your amazing salad tangier, it keeps your fruit from over ripening and browning or wilting. Lemon juice is a great addition to any fruit you’re not willing to finish the first time around, as it keeps the fruit slightly preserved without taking away from it’s healthiness or freshness.

For this winter fruit salad, presentation is as much a part of it as the fruit. After all, if you’re serving this to fussy children, picky teenagers, or even yourself, you’ll be looking for the ‘best’ pieces of fruit. Make sure you cut the pieces somewhat evenly and small enough to fit in your mouth. Pick a variety of colors, splash the lemon juice onto the fruit, and toss it around a little. Ensure that the fruit is evenly coated in the light sprinkle of lemon juice, and you should have a fruit salad that even Martha Stewart would be jealous of. Within no time, you’ll have bountiful fruit salads all throughout winter!

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Amazing Cream Cheese Brownie Recipe

 

Cream Cheese Brownie

Everyone enjoys some delicious treats from time to time, whether they are for dessert following a holiday dinner, a birthday, or some other kind of special occasion. The next time that you are looking to impress party guests by blowing them away with a fantastic dessert, prepare this amazing cream cheese brownie recipe.

Here are the ingredients that you will need to prepare this dessert:

  • Brownie
  • 1 (20 ounce) package fudge brownie mix (13x9 size)
  • 1/4 cup water (or what mix calls for)
  • 1/3 cup oil (or what your mix calls for)
  • 2 eggs (or what your mix calls for)
  • Topping
  • 1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla

Once you have all of your ingredients set up, then you are ready to start preparing the dessert. Although it seems complicated, the recipe is actually pretty simple. You are basically going to prepare the brownies first and then add the cream cheese mixture into that batter. Here are the exact steps that you will need to follow to prepare a perfect batch of cream cheese brownies:

  • Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Follow the directions on the package of the brownie mix to ensure that the brownies are properly prepared for cooking (you will need water, oil, and eggs).
  • Grease your 13x9 inch backing pan and pour the prepared bownie mix into it.
  • Make the cream cheese smooth by beating it with an electric mixer. Run the mixer on medium speed, and beat the cheese until it is completely smoothed out.
  • Add sugar and continue mixing it into the cream cheese. After the sugar is mixed in, add in the vanilla and egg. Mix the entire concoction until it is blended well.
  • Place the cream cheese mixture across the pan in tiny spoonfuls. Leave some parts of the brownie mix showing in between the spoonfuls of the cream cheese mixture.
  • Use a knife or a fork to mix the cream cheese and the brownie batter together until they are nicely swirled together with a marbled effect. The technique is difficult to pull off perfectly, but be careful not to work the batter too much.
  • Place the pan in the oven and bake it for 35 to 40 minutes. After it is finished cooking, allow the pan to cool and cut the brownies into squares. The brownies also freeze nicely if you want to save some of them for later.

After everything is prepared, all you have to do is serve the brownies to your guests, sit back, and enjoy the satisfaction that you totally nailed a great dessert. Everyone will marvel at your culinary skills, thinking that you spent hours slaving away in the kitchen to prepare such a delicious, complex after-dinner treat. Only you will know that you actually spent less than an hour preparing such a beautiful dessert, but that can be our little secret.

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A Citrus Salad with Fried Rosemary and Olives

A salad is a nice crisp course that can go with any meal, or be a meal itself. Even at restaurants, you can have a salad before your meal or have a dinner salad off their menu. Many restaurants have a variety of salads and their own dressings.

At home, it’s easy to throw a salad together for lunch, before a meal, or even a dinner. If you fix the same salad every time though, it could be boring.  You’ve tried cob salad, traditional salad, ceasar salad, and other salads that can be easy to make, but it’s time to try a new salad. One that will capture your senses.

Recipe #1:

Ingredients:

  • Vegetable oil
  • 4 3-inch rosemary springs
  • Kosher salt
  • 10 pitted oil-cured black olives
  • 6 blood oranges
  • 6 Cara Cara oranges
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil

First, pour 1 inch of vegetable oil into a heavy saucepan. Use a deep-fry thermometer and make sure the bulb is in the oil and watch for it to get to 350 degrees F. Put the rosemary springs in and fry until crisp and bright green. This will only take 10-15 seconds. Transfer them to a paper towel lined plate and season them with the kosher salt. Add the olives to the oil and fry until the bubbling has ceased.

This will take a bit longer at about 4 minutes. Place them on the same plat and tear the rosemary leaves off the springs and mince them. Next chop the olives.

Use a small, sharp knife to cut, peel, and white pith from all of the 12 oranges. Cut crosswise into ½” rounds and arrange them on a platter. Season the oranges lightly with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Then drizzle the olive oil over them and add your rosemary and olives.

Citrus Salad Recipes

The above recipe can also be altered just a bit. To add some more citrus to the dish so it’s not sweet, you can cut a lemon and add it to the dish. Also, if you’re looking for some green to add to the plate since it isn’t a traditional salad, try adding spinach or arugula.

When trying any recipe, you don’t have to follow it exactly that way, unless you’re baking. For this salad, you can add any citrus you want and different kinds of olives. You can also add different greens and dry different dressings. You don’t have to use extra virgin olive oil every time. Try a vinegar dressing. Not every dressing will work. You don’t want to put a thick, heavy cream based dressing with citrus.

If you think the recipe seems a bit simple, try adding something that you think will go with the dish to make it more complex and delicious. If you want a big crunch factor, try adding something crunchy. You can even add more fruit if you desire it to be sweeter.

 

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Delicious Chocolate Orange Cupcakes

Chocolate Orange CupcakesCupcakes are a cute and fun substitution for a cake for almost any function you attend. Instead of cutting individual slices of cake for people, they can simply have a cupcake.

When it comes to cupcakes, it’s also fun to mess with flavor combinations. You can make maple bacon cupcakes, wasabi ginger cupcakes, mint green tea cupcakes, or chocolate orange cupcakes.

Chocolate oranges can be found in stores and they taste amazing. Well now, you can put it in a cupcake and make a delicious dessert for any occasion.

Chocolate Orange Cupcakes with Limoncello Frosting

Ingredients:

Cupcakes

  • 1 box of chocolate cake mix
  • Orange juice (instead of water in cake mix)
  • 1 cup of chocolate chips
  • 1 teaspoon of all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup of diced candied orange peels

To make the cupcakes, mix the cake mix as instructed on the box substituting the orange juice for the water. Toss the chocolate chips with the flour and fold it in to the cake mixture along with the candied orange peels. Line a cupcake pan with cupcake liners and fill with mixture according to package instructions. Bake and let cool on a wire rack before frosting.

Frosting

  • 2 cups of powdered sugar
  • 1 stick (1/2 cup) of softened butter
  • 2 tablespoons of limoncello (or lemon juice for minors)
  • 2 tablespoons of orange juice
  • 1 zested orange
  • ¼ cup of finely diced candied orange peel for garnish

Combine all the ingredients except the candied orange peel and mix with a hand mixer beat until smooth. Spread on cooled cupcakes and add candied orange peel as a garnishment.

Chocolate Orange Cupcakes with White Chocolate and Orange Buttercream Frosting

Ingredients:

Cupcakes

  • ½ cup of flour
  • 5oz of caster sugar
  • 1 tsp of baking powder
  • 1 ½ oz of unsalted butter
  • 2 oz of melted dark chocolate
  • 1egg
  • 4 fl oz of milk
  • 1 orange, juiced
  • 3 tablespoons of granulated sugar

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F before mixing together flour, sugar, and baking powder. Once combined add the butter. Whisk melted chocolate, egg, and milk in separate bowl before adding to the dry mixture. Spoon into cupcake tins and bake for 15-20 minutes. When cupcakes are starting to cool, combine orange juice and granulated sugar in a bowl and carefully pour it over the warm cupcakes and set them aside letting them cool completely.

Frosting

  • 4 ½ oz of softened, unsalted butter
  • 9 oz of icing sugar
  • 2-3 tablespoons of milk
  • 1 ¾ oz of melted white chocolate
  • 1 zested orange
  • 3 ½ oz of orange chocolate

Beat the butter in a bowl until light and fluffy. Carefully add in the icing sugar and beat for five minutes. Beat in the milk, melted chocolate and orange zest then decorate your cupcakes.

Cupcakes can be made in any flavor, and it’s always good to try something new with orange chocolate cupcakes.

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