The Best Onion Rings You’ll Ever Make at Home

From the very young to the very old, everyone seems to be insanely obsessed with onion rings. And now, here is yet another reason for you to fall in love with them - you can easily make them at home! In essence, there are two main ways of enabling you make the best onion rings:

The Best Onion Rings You'll Ever Make at Home

Keeping the batter light:

To enable you make onion rings that are free of an overly greasy outer shell, opt to use delicate batter. This is achieved through the combination of the batter's flour, cornstarch, egg, spices, water and some beer.

Seasoning the flour:

To make the onion have a distinct taste (not the taste that's usually associated with fried onions), use several ingredients. These ingredients will in the final end enable you have onions that are savory and with a unique flavor. Examples of ingredients that you should use include cayenne, onion powder, garlic, sugar and of course, salt.

Below is a perfect example of a recipe that you can experiment with at home:

Beer battered onion rings:

To prepare beer battered onion ring for five, you will need:

Five cups of vegetable oil; three cups of all purpose flour; two and a half teaspoons of onion powder, cayenne pepper, granulated sugar and garlic powder; two yellow onions; two cups of sparkling mineral water; one and a half cups of cornstarch and high quality beer - preferably anchor steam beer; one and a half tablespoons of kosher salt and; one large egg. (Other than the beer adding flavor to the rings, it also makes the rings non-greasy/lighter as well as giving them a crisp exterior which reduces the chances of them over-cooking).

In terms of the necessary equipment, you'll need a deep fry thermometer, two rimmed baking sheets and two heat safe cooling racks.

Preparation:

The first step is to have the oven preheated to 250 degrees and setting the baking sheets and cooling racks.

Then, cut the onions in a crosswise manner. Each should have a 0.5 inches thickness. Only the bigger outer rings should be used. Next, add a cup of flour into a large bowl and toss the rings into the floor. Let them sit there for 30 minutes. When about to fry, whisk in a large bowl two more cups of flour with cornstarch, cayenne, onion and garlic powder and, sugar and salt. Then, whisk the beer, egg and water in another bowl.

Over medium heat, heat an inch of oil and wait till the oil registers 350 degrees. Then, be dredging the onion rings in the batter before dropping them in the oil. To prevent overcrowding, work in batches. Only turn the onion rings once and let them cook for a maximum of three minutes or until golden brown. The cooked onion rings should then be transferred to the cooling racks which ought to be set over the baking sheets. Sprinkle them with salt and keep them in the oven.

 

[image]

Easy Way to Make a Gourmet-Like Homemade Sushi

Easy Way to Make a Gourmet-Like Homemade Sushi

 

Sushi, a dish commonly featuring various fish, vegetables, and sauces rolled in a sheet of seaweed and sticky rice, is rarely homemade. Most people find making grommet style sushi at home intimidating, but it doesn’t have to be. Keep reading for essential sushi making terminology, ingredients, and tips.

 

ESSENTIALS

You’ll need a few key essentials to make homemade sushi. First a bamboo rolling mat or a Makisu. More experienced sushi makers can get by without the mat, but it’s helpful for beginners to maintain a tight roll. Look for bamboo mats that are rounded on one side and flat on the other. It’ll cost you a few extra dollars than the rounded on both side versions, but it’ll be easier to use.

Next you’ll need the right sticky rice, or shari, for your sushi. Remember to rinse the rice before cooking to get rid of excess starch,ensuring your don’t end up with a doughy mess.

Purchase some nori- thin sheets of seaweed that provide extra flavor, nutrition, and infrastructure to the sushi roll. Nori is typically sold in 10 and 50 packs, and must be kept very dry. We recommend purchasing the smaller packs for homemade sushi, avoiding the risk of spoiling the larger packs with moisture in between uses. When using the nori, you’ll notice one side is smoother than the other. The smooth side should always face the mat; imagine the rough side needs to grip the rice.

For sauces, like the creamy Japanese mayonnaise, sweet unagi sauce, and ponzu sauce, you can either make versions at home or purchase already made sauces at an Asian store or well-stocked supermarket. Don’t forget some pickled ginger and Wasabi!

 

TECHNIQUES

When rolling sushi, keep a bowl of water with a splash of rice vinegar and dry towels nearby. The sticky shari requires wet hands while you should only handle nori with dry fingers.

Don’t compress or overload the nori with shari, you just need a thin layer of rice. Keep about a 2 cm margin of nori uncovered. Lay a strip of the fish along a length then carefully place your vegetables. That margin of uncovered nori alongside the filling will help begin the first roll.

 

ROLLS

When it comes to making the actual sushi rolls the ingredient combinations are limitless. Just be sure to cut the vegetables thin enough to fit into the rolls easily, a very sharp knife ensures a smooth preparation.

If a recipe calls for raw fish, purchase high quality sushi grade fish. If you’re having trouble finding fish locally and would rather not order from online vendors, as a short cut, you can purchase the big pieces of sashimi in your grocery store, then simply cut the fish to size for your homemade sushi.

If dealing with raw fish at home makes you a bit uneasy, you can use smoked fish, quickly seared or steamed seafood like scallops, or tempura fried. Another option that borders on Japanese/Spanish fusion is making ceviche. Ceviche is a mixture of diced seafood drenched in citrus juice. The acid in the juice ‘cooks’ the small pieces of seafood. Just watch the liquid content when placing the ceviche on the sushi roll.

Start out by imitating rolls you’ve enjoyed at restaurants then consider making your own filling combinations. Home made sushi can be delicious, elegant, and rewarding.

 

Image Credit

Sweet Potato Side Dishes

Potato Side Dishes

Sweet potato is the reigning vegetable of the season. It's tasty, easy to make, and a versatile ingredient for soups, stews, pies, and casseroles. Plus, it's one of the healthier items of produce you can eat. Deemed a "superfood," it's loaded with vitamins A and C as well as potassium. It makes a great side dish for holiday dinners or even family nights. Here are some healthy, yummy recipes for sweet potato.

Sweet Potato and Peanut Soup

This soup is a perfect appetizer before the main course. It's simple to cook and doesn't take much time at all.

  • Prick two large sweet potatoes with a fork, then microwave on high for 7-10 minutes.
  • Over medium heat, cook a tablespoon of canola oil in a Dutch oven. Add one chopped yellow onion and brown for 2-4 minutes.
  • Add a garlic clove, three cups of tomato juice, two teaspoons of ginger, and a four-ounce can of drained green chiles. Boil for 10 minutes.
  • Peel the sweet potato and puree half of it with half a cup of smooth peanut butter and a 15-oz can of vegetable broth. Put the other half in the pot.
  • When the puree is done, add it to the pot and stir occasionally.
  • If the soup is too thick, you can thin it with water.
  • Add pepper and cilantro on top to serve.

Sweet Potato and Black Bean Chili

This is a hearty vegetarian chili packed with nutrition. It goes well with slices of fresh French bread for dipping.

  • Heat three tablespoons of olive oil in a Dutch oven on medium heat.
  • Add one diced sweet potato and a chopped onion to the oven, then cook for 4 minutes until onion browns.
  • Add four minced garlic cloves, two tablespoons chili powder, four teaspoons of cumin, and a dash of salt to the mixture.
  • Add two and a half cups of water and simmer, then cook for 10-12 minutes.
  • Add a can of chopped tomatoes, two cans of rinsed black beans, and two teaspoons of lime juice. Stir often and simmer for 5 minutes until ready.

Honey-Cinnamon Oven Roasted Sweet Potato

This simple, easy recipe yields delicious cubes of sweet potato that are sure to wind up on every plate.

  • Peel and cube four sweet potatoes, then lay them on a roasting tray.
  • Drizzle potatoes with olive oil, honey, and cinnamon.
  • Roast for 25-30 minutes.
  • When potatoes are done, drizzle with a little extra olive oil and add some sea salt to taste.

Sweet Potato Casserole

This dish is a staple of Thanksgivings everywhere, but also works well for family dinners on weeknights.

  • Cook two sweet potatoes in the microwave, pricking them first, for 7-10 minutes until soft.
  • Mash together in a large bowl with four tablespoons of butter, two eggs, half a teaspoon of vanilla, half a cup of white sugar, a dash of salt, and half a cup of milk.
  • Pour mixture into a baking pan.
  • In a separate bowl, mix three tablespoons of butter with one-third cup of flour and half a cup of brown sugar. Add half a cup of chopped pecans and then sprinkle over the sweet potato mixture.
  • Bake for 30 minutes at 325 F.

[Image 1] [Image 2]

 

Cooking With White Wine

Cooking with White Wine

White wine is delicious to drink, but it can also be a fantastic ingredient for food as well. It brings a faint hint of crisp acidity and can balance other, stronger flavors in a dish. Adding just a touch of white wine can give intrigue and extra flavor to a basic dish like linguine. If you're seeking to experiment with different recipes, or you'd like to cook a nice dinner for date night, here are some essential tips for cooking with white wine.

Choosing A White Wine

The best wines for cooking are crisp, dry white wines like unoaked chardonnay, pinot grigio, riesling, or sauvignon blanc. Richer, buttery chardonnays can turn bitter, while very sweet wines can make your dish too sugary. Avoid the bolder flavors and select a moderately priced ($8-$13) bottle that has a tangy, dry element. You don't need to spend a lot of money, since the wine will cook within the dish, so skip that expensive bottle in the fridge.

Depending on what you're cooking- whether it's steamed mussels, chicken, or a fettucini dish- you can choose what type of wine you want to match the food's flavor. Pinot grigio is considered the most versatile of the three. Sauvignon blanc goes well in seafood and pasta dishes, while chardonnay adds a rich taste to meats and vegetables.

When you're selecting a wine, try to avoid anything labeled "cooking wine." These can have salt or preservatives, and they don't taste particularly nice as a drinking wine. Ideally, you want to find an uncorked white wine that you can add into your dish, but also drink at the dinner table to pair with your meal.

Which White Wines Match With My Dish?

Richer wines like chardonnay work well when you're cooking heavy cream sauces, chicken, sausage, or gravy. Many chefs will use chardonnay in chicken dishes that already have strong flavors, such as garlic or onions. The buttery chardonnay gives the chicken a rich taste to help balance out the sometimes overpowering ingredients already in the dish. If you're making a hearty meal with strong elements, you may want to consider using a dash of chardonnay.

If you're cooking seafood, you want a crisper, more delicate wine like pinot grigio that contains a slightly acidic taste. Shellfish and fish benefit from a sautee in pinot grigio, giving them a slightly fruity and mineral taste. Clams, mussels, and oysters all taste delicious steamed in a crisp white wine sauce that helps cut through the fattier, richer taste.

Vegetables can also benefit from white wine. Sauvignon Blanc's floral flavors can spice up a regular vegetable side dish. Veggies like spinach, artichoke, bell peppers, and mushrooms receive a whole new taste dimension with a splash of wine in the pan. You'll want a very light, dry Sauvignon Blanc for cooking your vegetables, but they should be easy enough to find at your local wine store.

White wine is a wonderful drink and also a terrific cooking ingredient. Best of all, once you've added it to your dish, you can serve the remainder at the table. Bon appetit!

[Image 1] [Image 2]

 

 

Awesome Roasted Squash Recipes

Roasted Squash

It's the fall season: jack 'o lanterns on doorways, leaves falling from trees, and a chill in the air. It's also the season to roast some delicious fresh squash that's just come from the farm. Squash can be a sweet, tender side dish that provides valuable nutrients and minerals. It's easy to roast and it's fairly inexpensive at your local grocery store. A versatile appetizer or vegetable course, it's also fun to serve cubed on little toothpicks at parties. It gives your guests a sweet taste without adding on saturated fats or extra calories.

Basic Roasted Butternut Squash

Butternut squash is so sweet that you barely need any spices or seasonings. This simple recipe enhances the taste with just a few ingredients.

  • Cut up a butternut squash and discard the seeds and stems. Cut the squash into one-inch cubes.
  • In a large bowl, toss the squash cubes with two minced garlic cloves and a few tablespoons of olive oil.
  • Sprinkle a little salt or pepper over the squash before roasting.
  • Spread the squash on a baking sheet and bake at 400 F for between 25-30 minutes.
  • Your squash should be golden, brown, and tender. That will indicate it's ready to eat.

Easy Roasted Acorn Squash

This side dish is ideal for family dinners. Kids love it too- it provides adventurous and sweet eating while giving your little ones plenty of vitamins. Who doesn't love little cups of sweet squash?

  • Cut the acorn squash in half and scrape out any seeds, stems, or strings.
  • Arrange the halves on a baking sheet.
  • Dab two tablespoons of butter on each squash half until they're coated well.
  • Sprinkle salt and pepper on the squash.
  • On each squash half, add two tablespoons of butter and a teaspoon of brown sugar into the center.
  • Bake on 400 F for between 45 minutes to an hour.
  • The squash should be tender and have little melted pools of butter and brown sugar in the center.

Parsley and Garlic Roasted Squash

For this recipe, you can use any type of squash. We recommend a good winter squash like butternut, kabocha, or hubbard.

  • Cut your squash into one-inch cubes, discarding the stem and seeds.
  • Toss with a few tablespoons of olive oil, then season with salt and pepper to taste.
  • Spread on a baking sheet and roast on 375 F for 30-45 minutes.
  • In a skillet, roast a few cloves of minced garlic in some olive oil. This should only take a minute or so until the garlic becomes browned.
  • In a large bowl, toss the garlic and parsley oil with the roasted squash.

Essentially, roasted squash requires three basic steps: cubing or cutting, seasoning, and baking. It's a versatile vegetable that you can season to taste with your favorite ingredients. You can create your own roasted squash recipes using particular seasonings like chili powder, pesto, or rosemary. Just cut up the squash, season it with your favorite spices, and bake in the oven for thirty minutes to an hour. Presto! You've got a new family favorite.

[Image 1] [Image 2]