Alfredo Sauce – What You Must Know About Cooking With It

The secret to good Alfredo sauce is a combination of ingredients and technique. Unlike many Italian dishes, Alfredo sauce is extremely rich, with the base ingredient being cream. This makes this dish an excellent alternative to the standard red sauces and meats normally associated with Italian meals.

When you go to make your Alfredo sauce, you should make certain you have all of your ingredients prepared in advance. The process of making the sauce goes by very quickly, so you will want to make certain you have everything nearby so that you do not risk scorching your cream as you cook. As scorching the cream is the most common cause of ruin of an Alfredo dish, this simple preparation can prevent disaster.

The common ingredients of standard Alfredo sauce are:

– Heavy Cream

– Parsley

– White Salt

– Pepper

– Butter

– Parmesan Cheese

Cooking times and amounts may vary from recipe to recipe. Also, ingredients may be altered depending on whether or not there are attempts at making the Alfredo more healthy. As Alfredo is so heavy on cream, butter and cheese, it is often viewed as a treat or avoided on many diets.

Once you have your ingredients prepared, there are several things that you can do to prevent ruining your dish.

1: Prepare your Pan

Scorching Alfredo is only the first of the risks. By properly preparing your pan by preheating and cooling the pan slightly with water, you can prevent the cream from scorching. When the cream is added to the pan, it should be done off of the heat, with the cream being returned to the heat after it has been warmed in the pan.

2: Remember to stir frequently

Reducing cream by half requires patience and dedication. Alfredo is not a sauce that you can leave alone for long. Plan to make your Alfredo sauce when you can dedicate time to it. This will prevent your cream from burning.

3: Do not add cheese while sauce is on the burner

A common mistake is for individuals to add the butter and cheese to the sauce while it is still on the burner. Do not make this error unless the recipe calls otherwise. The most common recipes do not add cheese or butter while the cream is on the heat, as this can cause the cheese to stick to the pan or the butter to cause the cream to separate. While mainly affecting aesthetics and lengthening cleanup time, it can also affect the flavor of the dish.

4: Have your pasta pot prepared in advance

Alfredo sauce is best eaten immediately. Before you begin cooking, have your water for your pasta already prepared, and the amount of pasta you want cooked put to the side. Start boiling the water part way through the sauce making process so that your Alfredo sauce and pasta finish at the same time.

5: Add toppings

Alfredo sauce is flexible. Great with meats and seafoods, as well as with vegetables, you can easily turn Alfredo into a one course meal. Prepare any toppings in advance, and warm them on a grill prior to serving. In the case of zucchini and other vegetations that do not sit well, put them on the grill or in the frying pan just as the sauce is nearing completion.



Source by Ferdinand Okeke

The Art of Vanilla

Vanilla is on the list of powerful ingredients that all of us use on a regular basis. However, most of us just take it for granted. In fact, it’s so popular that it’s an important part of all types of recipes. Although vanilla is ubiquitous, we don’t know about the origin of it for sure. It’s a vine-like plant that can grow up on trees. The length of the vine can be up to 30 feet.

Countries that produce it

Although many countries produce it, three are on top of the list. They are listed below with the amount of vanilla they produce:

1. Madagascar

2926 tons

2. Papua new guinea

200 tons

3. Indonesia

2304 tons

Health Benefits

Vanilla offers a number of health benefits. Listed below are some of the most common benefits.

  • Helps with weight loss
  • Healthy for your heart
  • Provides relief for respiratory conditions
  • Has healing properties
  • Helps reduce anxiety
  • Helps with digestion

Vanilla Bean Properties

1. Mg

2. K

3. Ca

4. Mn

Let’s take a look at some of the recipes.

Vanilla Bean Cheesecake

Ingredients

  • Graham crackers
  • Granulated sugar
  • Unsalted butter
  • Cream cheese
  • Vanilla beans
  • Eggs
  • Sour cream
  • Heavy cream
  • White chocolate

Vanilla Bean Cheesecake

Preheat your oven and then line the springform pain with a new sheet of foil.

Make graham cracker crust solution, then press it onto the pan, and start baking.

Prepare cheesecake filling, then pour it over the cracker crust, and then bake it. Allow it to cool down for a while and then spread mousse layer over the cheesecake.

Top it up with whipped toppings, and garnish with mint and berries.

Vanilla Bean Cupcakes

List of ingredients;

  • Flour: 3 cups
  • Baking powder: 2 ½
  • Salt: ½ tsp
  • Butter: 1 cup
  • Sugar: 1 ¾
  • Eggs: 2 (large)
  • Vanilla bean (1)
  • Vanilla extract: 2 tsp
  • Milk: 1 ½ cups

Method:

Preheat the oven until it reaches 350 degrees. Line the cupcake tins with good quality wrappers. Create a mixture of salt, baking powder and flour. Beat the sugar and butter for about two minutes or until it becomes fluffy and light. Now, add the eggs one by one and then drop the vanilla extract and seeds. Finally, beat the mixture until it’s properly mixed.

Fill each of the cupcake cups with batter and then keep baking it for 15 minutes.

Remove the cupcakes and then shift them to a rack until they are cool down. In the meantime, you can make the frosting.

Ingredients:

  • Butter: 1 cup
  • Vanilla bean: 1
  • Heavy cream: 2 tsp
  • Confectioners’ sugar: 3 cups
  • Sprinkles

Make the Frosting

Beat the mixture of vanilla extract, vanilla bean seeds until the mixture becomes fluffy. Next, add 50% of the sugar and mix again. Lastly, add the rest of sugar and heavy cream and start beating it to make creamy frosting.



Source by Shalini M

Three Reasons Why Baby Squirrels Die in Captivity

Did you ever take in a baby squirrel and start to feed and care for it, then have it go downhill physically and die? You’re not alone! The following are three common reasons why baby squirrels die in captivity:

1. The Wrong Diet.

Improper diet is the number one reason why squirrels die. There’s a lot of controversy over what is the correct formula to feed baby squirrels who are still nursing. Many wild animal rehabilitators will tell you to buy an expensive puppy formula, and to never feed a squirrel cow’s milk. I’ve used the expensive puppy formula with marginal success, but recently they changed the formulation which left it lacking enough milk fat for squirrels. Now, all of a sudden, they’re telling people to add heavy cream to boost the fat content! Hello! What is heavy cream? It’s the cream from cow’s milk! The reason cow’s milk will kill a baby squirrel is because there are substances in the milk that will give a squirrel severe diarrhea. Diarrhea will lead to an electrolyte imbalance,which will lead to a heart irregularity and ultimately death from sudden cardiac arrest.

I’ve found that if you get rid of the substance in cow’s milk and cream that causes diarrhea, a baby squirrel will do just fine on a cream rich cows milk formula. But you must do one simple but vital thing to make this formula safe for squirrels! I can teach you how to make this formula and save you having to spend twenty dollars per can for puppy formula!

2. Hypocalcemia.

The second big killer of squirrels is Hypocalcemia. That’s a fancy name for low blood Calcium. Squirrels, especially in captivity, have an extraordinarily high calcium requirement. Death from low blood calcium comes after they stop nursing. While they are getting milk, their calcium needs are being met. When they quit nursing, they need a calcium supplement or they’ll develop what is called Metabolic Bone Disease. This disease is characterized by loss of calcium from the bones, especially in the spine and back legs. They start to shuffle their back legs when they walk, and progressively lose nerve and muscle control. Their bones become brittle and break easily.

Low blood calcium can also lead to heart irregularity and sudden cardiac death. A squirrel with metabolic Bone Disease is a pathetic scene! Prevention is simple! I teach a very simple way to make a dietary supplement called Nut Squares or Nut Balls that will insure optimum calcium intake and good health for squirrels.

3. Internal Injuries.

The last major killer of baby squirrels is internal injuries. Many times a found squirrel has fallen a great distance out of a leaf nest. One of the first things you should do for a baby squirrel, after you get it in a warm environment, is to check it over carefully for injuries. Babies normally have rapid respiration and heartbeats, but if a baby squirrel is having difficulty breathing or is using more than just chest muscles to breathe, it may have internal injuries. It could have broken ribs or a contused lung or heart! Blunt trauma to the abdomen can injure internal organs such as the liver, kidneys or spleen. A baby squirrel’s abdominal wall is very thin. If you see dark purple discoloration of the abdomen, that is an ominous sign that indicates internal bleeding.

There’s not a whole lot that can be done for a baby squirrel that is in that condition. A Veterinarian could evaluate the animal, but chances are, nothing would be done other than observe and support it’s breathing struggle with oxygen and a warm environment until it passes. I’ve found in my years as a Squirrel Rehabilitator that squirrels love to have their head and neck gently rubbed, it’s very soothing and calming for them. Death is a part of life. For me, holding and comforting a dying squirrel helps me realize how precious and brief life is. I find tremendous joy and satisfaction in caring for these magnificent creatures, and thank God that even in death, I can make a difference!



Source by William Sells

How to Thicken Soups with out the Fat

Smooth and creamy soups are so pleasing to the pallet with there smooth texture and buttery taste. However these types of soups are often times high in fat and cholesterol. There are easy ways to still be able to enjoy hearty thick soups with less fat and less cholesterol.

Here are four alternatives to heavy cream, butter or coconut milk when thickening soup.

Alternative One

Substitute plain yogurt for the cream, butter or coconut milk. Simply make the soup as normal holding back the fat. At the end of cooking add enough plain yogurt to make the soup creamy and smooth. Plain yogurt has a tangy taste and may alter the flavor of the soup. To combat this add a spoonful of honey or sugar with the plain yogurt. But keep in mind yogurt will curdle if boiled. Never boil soup with yogurt.

Alternative Two

Whisk in sour cream. Sour cream is not exactly low in fat or low in cholesterol but it does have the smooth creamy taste and texture many soups require. The trick to using sour cream is to only use 2-3 tablespoons and to whisk it in just before serving. By whisking in the sour cream at the end of cooking the smooth creamy taste will still be full bodied when the soup is served. But just like yogurt sour cream will separate if boiled, never boil soup with sour cream.

Alternative Three

Use less fat. Often a recipe will call for ½ cup to 1 cup of heavy cream. This amount is often times not necessary to achieve the same smooth creamy flavor and texture. Simply lower the amount of heavy cream to 2 tablespoons and the soup will still maintain the desired finish.

Alternative Four

Use vegetable puree. A simple puree of potatoes or other root vegetables will accomplish the desired thickening of the soup. Simply omit the cream, butter or coconut milk and substitute a cup of thick vegetable puree.



Source by Shauna Hanus

Candle Making Project – How to Make Ice Cream Soda Candles

Who can resist an ice cream soda during a hot, humid, summer afternoon. Is it the special dessert you order when you take the family out for ice cream. I cannot resist one.

It is the perfect dessert, but how did this perfect dessert suddenly appear to whet our palates. It wasn’t hot and it wasn’t humid when Robert Greene in 1834 made his first ice cream soda. His concoction was a mistake that changed the way we saw ice cream. How could this perfect drink be a mistake?

Pharmacists back in the day mixed heavy cream with their soda water. On this particular day Greene did not have any cream. He ran to the nearest vendor and purchased a vanilla ice cream scoop. His plan was to let the vanilla melt into cream then put it into the soda. Things got busy for him and he ended up throwing the scoop in the soda water. Ice cream soda was born. It was such a huge hit that his sales went from $6.00 per day to $600 per day.

What a better way to enjoy your ice cream soda than with a candle. If you are a connoisseur that is looking for more paraphernalia then add a summer fun candle to the list.

Here are directions to make your own DIY candle.

Materials Needed:

  1. Ice Cream Scoop Silicone Mold
  2. Ice Cream Dish Candle Silicone Mold
  3. Blackberry or any fruit Silicone Mold
  4. Translucent Paraffin Wax
  5. Paraffin Candle Wax For the scoop and soda
  6. Wick
  7. Fragrance Oil (optional)
  8. Wick pin
  9. Wax sprinkles, gummy bears, gummy worms, cherries, berries
  10. Drill and drill bit

Directions:

  • Melt the translucent wax and pour it into the dish mold. I keep the dish plain
  • De-mold the wax dish after it cools down
  • Get enough paraffin wax for the scoop, berries, and the soda
  • Melt the paraffin wax and pour it into the blackberry mold
  • Wait for the berries to cool. Take them out and place them into the scoop silicone mold. I chose to keep the scoop wax plain and the blackberry wax purple
  • Pour the wax over the blackberries in the mold. Make sure the wax isn’t too hot to melt the berries
  • The rest of the wax I colored mocha for the soda
  • De-mold the scoop
  • Now for the soda. Melt and color the soda wax
  • Fill the dish 2/3 of the way up with soda and allow it to fully cool
  • Pour the rest of soda wax into the dish and set the scoop on top. The scoop should sink slightly, but adhere to the soda wax
  • Drill a hole into the scoop and ice cream dish for the wick
  • Insert your wick

Top your candle with some wax candies, wax cool whip and a cherry. These candles are great for summer birthday parties, picnics, socials and celebrations.



Source by Dawn Hulslander-Shaffer

How to Make the Best Homemade Ice Cream

Typically, ice creams are served outside the convenience of our home. We usually get them from our grocery stores and local markets. This thing is not bad at all. But if you have the right ingredients, then why not make your own in your kitchen?

Trust me, the process of making ice cream is fairly easy. Contrary to popular belief, this sweet and luscious dessert is actually a treat that you can create on a daily basis – not that you have to. However, during special occasions and parties, the presence of a homemade delicacy is a great way to add that ‘Wow’ factor. It is a good partner for snacks like jerkies, too!

In this article, I will show you how to make a vanilla ice cream. It is among the most favorite ice cream flavors in the world today. Let’s get started!

There are three ways you can make an ice cream in your home. Take note that none of these approaches will require you to use an ice cream machine.

First Method

Ingredients:

  • Heavy cream (2 cups; chilled)
  • Condensed milk (14 ounces; chilled)
  • Vanilla extract (1/2 teaspoon)

Step 1

Use an electric mixer to whip the heavy cream until becomes mix. After this, adjust the mixer into low speed so that mix the vanilla, condensed milk, and other flavorings that you want to pour.

Step 2

Pour the entire mixture into an airtight and resealable container. You should cover it with a plastic wrap before you seal off the container. After this, put it in your freezer for around six hours or until such time the mixture becomes firm and creamy. As easy as this, you already made a tasty ice cream in your kitchen!

Second Method

Ingredients:

  • Whole milk (1 1/4 cup; chilled)
  • Granulated sugar (3/4 cup; chilled)
  • Heavy cream (2 cups; chilled)
  • Vanilla extract (1 tablespoon)
  • Salt (1/4 teaspoon)

Step 1

Use a large bowl and place it under an electric mixer. Next, pour the sugar and milk into the bowl so that mixer can beat the mixture thoroughly. You need to mix it until such time the granulated sugar dissolves. Specifically, it should only take you around two minutes to accomplish this task.

Step 2

After this, you can already pour the vanilla, salt, and ice cream in the mix. Stir them properly by still using your mixer. If all the ingredients were not chilled, you need to place the mixture in the refrigerator for around 10 to 15 minutes. When this is over, your ice cream is already suitable for consumption.

Third Method

Ingredients:

  • Whole milk (1 1/4 cup; chilled)
  • Granulated sugar (3/4 cup; chilled)
  • Heavy cream (2 cups; chilled)
  • Vanilla extract (1 tablespoon)
  • Salt (1/4 teaspoon)

Step 1

Pour the entire mixture into a large baking dish. The latter should be deep enough so that it can cater all the ingredients. After this, put the baking dish in your freezer for around 40 minutes.

If the mixture starts to solidify, take it out from the freezer. Next, use a spatula to stir the mixture thoroughly. Place the baking dish back in the freezer after stirring.

Step 2

Continue the aforementioned procedure for the next two hours. The interval should be every 30 minutes. This will ensure that you can stir the mixture properly for their flavors to blend. Alternatively, you could use a blender or a handheld mixer to do this process.

After the last mixing, place back the mixture inside your freezer and let it freeze there for 20 minutes. Your ice cream should be ready after this!

Conclusion

These are the methods that you can apply in making ice cream in your home. Although they are simple, you will be surprised at the kind of flavors that they can yield! You will be happy that you were able to make your favorite dessert without stressing too much!



Source by Bob Tom