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RAS EL HANOUT ROASTED BRUSSELS SPROUT & SWEET POTATO BOWL WITH MAPLE-ORANGE VINAIGRETTE

hey dear folks! sprouts here, sprouts there, sprouts everywhere. when i was a child i have hated brussels sprout so badly but now, brussels sprout is favourite type of cabbage.
today’s recipe is well-suited for cooking with sprouts as it gets the most intense flavour and the best taste out of them. no matter, if you have hated sprouts up to now or you already are a sprouts lover, this recipe will change your mind as for brussels sprout and you’re going to love this hearty vegetable. i bet you will!

for this recipe, you roast sprouts and sweet potatoes (a stunner, you already know) with ras el hanout, a moroccan spice blend, just THE spice blend! i commonly purchase mine from an organic grocery store. added to these spicy roasted vegetables are creamy good-quality goat’s cheese, fresh lamb’s lettuce and a killer sauce made, among others, with olive oil, maple syrup and orange juice.

are you in on it? great! here we go:

RAS EL HANOUT ROASTED BRUSSELS SPROUT & SWEET POTATO BOWL WITH MAPLE-ORANGE VINAIGRETTE
|serves 2|

ingredients
400 g brussels sprouts, stalk and outer leaves removed, washed + cut into halves
600 g sweet potatoes, peeled + cut into cubes
1 small red onion, cut into small wedges
2 tbsp coconut oil
1 tsp ras el hanout
sea salt & black pepper
2 handful of lamb’s lettuce, washed + drained
80 g good-quality goat’s cheese, crumbled

maple-orange vinaigrette
2 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp orange juice
1 tbsp maple syrup
1 clove garlic, minced (optional)
sea salt & black pepper

instructions
preheat oven to 225°. toss brussels sprouts, sweet potatoes, red onions, coconut oil, and ras el hanout in a large baking dish; season with sea salt and pepper. roast, tossing once, until everything is tender, soft and browning, 25-35 minutes.

while the vegetables are roasting, prepare the maple-orange vinaigrette. in a jar with a lid, combine olive oil, orange juice, maple syrup, garlic (optional), sea salt and pepper. shake well until vinaigrette is combined.

to serve, divide roasted vegetables onto large bowls; add lamb’s lettuce and mix together gently. drizzle each bowl with the prepared maple-orange vinaigrette and sprinkle with crumbled goat’s feta.

toss until everything is well-coated, season with sea salt – if needed – and simply enjoy!

INTRODUCING: STOOKER ROASTING CO. + CHEMEX BREWING GUIDE | LIFE IS WAY TOO SHORT FOR BAD COFFEE.

LIFE IS WAY TOO SHORT FOR BAD COFFEE!

Hey folks, today is all about good coffee. I’m such a coffee lover and always hunting for high quality, fresh coffee beans. This is where Stooker Roasting Co. comes in. Stooker is a specialty coffee roaster in Amsterdam. They hunt for the most tasteful beans from all over the world. Their goal is to roast delicious coffee while making sure that the entire supply chain from the grower to exporter are fairly and properly paid. Thumbs up! This is exactly why I wanna introduce them to you, folks.

I am absolutely impressed by the packaging itself. Stooker coffee appeals to both design and coffee lovers like you and me. Freshly roasted beans lose their flavour over time. Therefor Stooker supplies us with the freshest beans possible. They manage this by roasting on demand. This time I have chosen #6 Costa Rica filter coffee and placed my order online at Hello Frankie Store. After that Stooker roasted the Costa Rica beans on the following Thursday. Hello Frankie Store send the beans before the weekend, so I could start my week with fresh Stooker coffee. The smell when I opened my package of freshly roasted coffee beans on Monday was awesome. Ground coffee or even stored roasted coffee beans cannot match up to freshly roasted beans.

What kind of brewing method do you prefer? While doing my A-levels, I was used to brewing with the french press. When I was sharing a flat with other students, we’re using a conventional filter machine. As I discovered an old Melitta filter on the flea market, I started grounding fresh coffee beans with a hand mill and brewing coffee with that cute little porcelain hand filter. Last Christmas I got a little Chemex and now I drink next level shit coffee each morning. I can fully recommend you investing money in this filter-drip coffee maker as your resulting cup coffee will be light, bright and delicately nuanced – simply beyond delicious.
What’s more, I admit I’m drawn to the Chemex as it is one of the most beautiful design objects with its charming wood handle and leather cord.
Here’s a little Chemex brew-it-yourself guide for you. All measurements are referring to the small Chemex brewer (1-3 cups).
CHEMEX BREWING
WHAT YOU NEED
Chemex brewer
Chemex filter
freshly roasted coffee beans
grinder
coffee mug
INGREDIENTS
19g freshly roasted coffee beans
300ml water + more for rinsing your paper filter
HOW TO BREW
1.
 Weigh and grind 19g coffee, medium-coarse grind setting.
2.
Boil water.
3.
Fold and place the filter into the Chemex with the three layer side facing the spout. Rinse with hot water to remove any paper flavor and preheat the Chemex. Pour away the water.
4.
Add your ground coffee. Wet the grounds with a small amount of your pre-measured hot water (75ml), pouring it in a circular motion to wet all the grounds. The coffee will begin to “bloom”. Wait 30 seconds.
5.
Add the rest of your water in a steady circular motion starting from the center and working your way out.
6.
Once the coffee finishes dripping through (3-4 minutes), remove the filter, serve and enjoy your cup of coffee!

I like coffee beans that are slightly roasted, as it gives the flavours in the coffee more of a chance to shine. As to Stooker Roasting’s Costa Rica coffee, this whole thing has a juicy mouthfeel and citrus flavours, then comes the sweet milk chocolate finish which rounds of the taste profile perfectly! #6 Costa Rica convinces me with its milk chocolate finish for the simple reason that I prefer coffee beans with a subtle chocolate flavour.

Some of you guys asked me where the grey porcelain cups are from. The answer is Amsterdam design studio De Intuïtiefabriek. These espresso cups, I’m serving our coffee in, are from their project ‘SUM’ – a colourful collection of porcelain cups, bowl and plates. Their tableware is modern, urban and timelessly beautiful. I got two of their grey porcelain cups online, just as Stooker coffee, at Hello Frankie Store:

| #6 Costa Rica filter coffee by Stooker Roasting Co.
| SUM espresso cup G5 by De Intuïtiefabriek

I hope you enjoyed my little coffee series about Chemex brewing, high quality coffee and the introduction of Stooker, the Amsterdam coffee roaster.

Cheers, Lisa! 

KOHLRABI COCONUT SOUP W/ CRISPY ROASTED RADISHES, NIGELLA SEEDS + CILANTRO GREMOLATA

 

Hello friends, it’s actually spring! That’s why I’m sharing this spring-like kohlrabi coconut soup with you today. Cooking with the seasons makes lots of fun. Today is all about kohlrabi and radishes. As a child I was used to snack them raw, together with our common “Brotzeit”. Um, well, we cut them into sticks/pieces and served them to our bread and butter breakfasts, lunches or dinners. I was wondering how I can turn these both spring vegetables into something zeitgeisty, more grown-up at once, and how they work together best.

Have you ever turned kohlrabi into soup or even roasted radishes? Not yet? You’re missing much! I bet you’ll never wanna eat kohlrabi and radishes another way.
As to the soup, it’s texture is creamy no end thanks to rich coconut milk. The soup is aromatic and mild at once, what makes it very pleasant and soothing – it has presence without demanding attention.
On to the radishes, that are roasted with nigella seeds – my newest king of spices – they are crispy, and will make you shout: “Oh wow!”.
The refreshing cilantro gremolata, that is freshly pestled in mortar with garlic and other good stuff, makes the recipe complete, and it all works out.

This soup is easy and quick to make, looks like spring in a bowl and even tastes like spring. Serve it with slices of toasted sourdough and this soup is worth making for either lunch or dinner once a week all spring, as it is such a vibrant trio – soup, topping + gremolata.

Here it is, a recipe for tasty and hearty kohlrabi coconut soup with roasted radishes, nigella seeds and cilantro gremolata – make sure you have fresh bread at hand to soak up all leftover soup in the bowl.

KOHLRABI COCONUT SOUP W/ CRISPY ROASTED RADISHES, NIGELLA SEEDS + CILANTRO GREMOLATA
|serves 2 as a hearty main entree or 4 as a side dish|

INGREDIENTS
350 g kohlrabi, peeled + diced
1 medium potato, peeled + diced
1 tbsp. coconut oil
½ yellow onion, diced
½ leek, white part cut into thin rings
½ tsp. ground cumin
½ tsp ground coriander
400 ml low-sodium vegetable stock
100 ml canned coconut milk
1-2 tsp. apple cider vinegar
freshly ground sea salt + black pepper to taste

8 red radishes, halved
1 tsp. nigella seeds
2 tsp. olive oil
freshly ground sea salt + black pepper to taste

handful of fresh cilantro, finely chopped
1 tbsp. olive oil
a squeeze of lemon juice
1 tsp. grated lemon zest
1 clove garlic, finely diced
a pinch of sea salt

fresh bread for serving

INSTRUCTIONS
Preheat the oven to 190°C.

In a large saucepan, heat coconut oil on medium heat. Add onions, leeks, cumin and coriander. Sauté until onions and leeks are soft, not browned, about two minutes. Next put kohlrabi and potatoes into the saucepan, season with sea salt and pepper, toss properly, sauté for further two minutes while stirring continuously.
Add the vegetable broth and coconut milk, bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat to medium, cover, and simmer for 15 minutes or until all the vegetables are tender.
Take the saucepan from heat. Add apple cider vinegar, and blend the soup using an immersion blender until smooth. Add extra coconut milk if desired and adjust seasoning.

Toss together the radishes, nigella seeds, olive oil salt, and pepper. Transfer to a baking sheet and roast for 12-15 minutes, until both crispy and tender.

To make the gremolata, put cilantro, garlic, olive oil, lemon juice, lemon zest, and a pinch of  sea salt in your mortar, and pestle until the cilantro leaves’ liquid exits and everything is mixed up.

Serve soup hot, in two bowls, with fresh cilantro gremolata, and roasted radishes right out of the oven. Enjoy the soup with either cripsy toasted or fluffy fresh bread.
Notes:

If you don’t own a mortar and pestle, you also could mix up the cilantro gremolata in a small bowl.

RUSTIC STRAWBERRY SPELT ROLLS

Hey peeps, just in time for Mother’s Day I’m sharing my recipe for these handsome and rustic strawberry + spelt bread rollsmade with yeast dough. My family has a mean addiction to sweet yeast dough pastries, and so have I. Last weekend I baked them for my Mother’s birthday brunch, and not only she but all the family was thrilled by these sweet pastries.

Pastries made with yeast dough have this very special taste. I love it! The first bite immediately takes me back to my childhood, where my grandma was used to baking yeast dough pastries with me, or rather for me, and the entire family. There didn’t need to be any special occasion, my grandma was always baking and provided us with delicious homemade food. As little child I loved these big family gatherings at my grandma’s place with up to 20 peeps – just eating, laughing, playing. Especially in summer, when everything took place outside in the garden. And now, this love has reawakened and I do cherish family time afresh.
This strawberry + spelt bread rolls works pretty well for your Mother’s Day gatherings, your moms and the entire family (including you) will drool over them, I swear. But they actually do not only work for Mother’s Day, also they are great for any other breakfast, brunch, or coffee + tea afternoons.

 

RUSTIC STRAWBERRY SPELT ROLLS
|makes 6 bread rolls|

As to the recipe, make sure to use juicy and ripe strawberries (from autumn to spring go for thawed frozen ones) and the finest spelt flour you can find. Spelt flour has less gluten than wheat, that’s why the dough needs to be kneaded way longer than wheat dough. So, knead, knead, knead to a fare-thee-well. By following these three tips your rolls will turn out pretty handsome, full of taste and extremely addictive.

Enjoy them while still warm, or slightly re-heated in case you’ve to transport them. You can serve them pure as they are (so scrumptious) or cut in half and spread with your favorite spread (so scrumptious, too) – salted butter & homemade jam, chocolate-hazelnut spread and almond butter are my first choice here.

INGREDIENTS
325 g fine spelt flour (type 630)
7 g active dry yeast
a pinch of sea salt
15 g brown rice syrup
165 ml almond milk
35 ml olive oil

40 g coconut oil, melted
30 g brown rice syrup
250g fresh strawberries, washed, drained + cut into small pieces
½ tsp. vanilla extract or ¼ tsp. vanilla powder

INSTRUCTIONS
Place flour, yeast and salt in a medium bowl and stir. Next, add rice syrup, milk and olive oil to the dry ingredients and start to knead it for at least 10 minutes or more. If the dough is too sticky, add a bit more flour, if it is too dry, add some more almond milk. Place the dough in a greased bowl, cover it with a clean towel, and allow the dough to both rest and rise in a warm place for about an hour or until it almost has doubled in size.

Preheat the oven to 190°C.
For the filling, melt coconut oil in a small saucepan, stir in rice syrup and vanilla. Place strawberries in a bowl and pour over half of the liquid mix.
On a lightly floured counter, divide the dough into 6 equal pieces. Properly knead in half of the marinated strawberries, and then scatter the remaining ones on top. Place the rolls on a lined baking tray. Drizzle each roll with the remaining coconut oil mix (in case it’s solid again, quickly reheat it) and bake for 25-30 minutes until golden brown and bubbling. For best taste enjoy the strawberry rolls while still warm.

Agricultural Land Commission

You may have heard that Richard Bullock has been dismissed by the Province as Chair and CEO of the Agricultural Land Commission. This is a concerning development. To say ‘thank you’ to Richard you may wish to sign the virtual Thank You card, thanking him for his tireless work protecting agricultural land in B.C. Thanks to Jim Wright from Richmond’s Garden City Conservation for creating the card.

To stay on top of this issue as it unfolds be sure to check out the ALR Watch Facebook page or visit the BC Food Systems Network website.

Photo of Richard Bullock
Credit: John Lehmann/The Globe and Mail

Classic Strawberry Shortcake – Thanks, Grandpa!

I was visiting my mom last summer, and overheard her and my aunt talking about making strawberry shortcake using “dad’s” recipe. They were obviously talking about my grandfather, which was surprising, since I had no idea he baked.

I remember he did a lot of cooking growing up, but it was things like frittata, meat sauce, or polenta. I never once saw him bake anything sweet. Nevertheless, he apparently gets credit for inventing our official family recipe for strawberry shortcake, which I’ve adapted here.

What he had done was taken the strawberry shortcake recipe off the box of a certain, very popular premade biscuit mix, and added extra “everything,” as my mother put it. So, that’s what I did here, except instead of using the stuff in the yellow box, I used self-rising flour, which I’m pretty sure is basically the same thing.

The only other major change is the original recipe calls for regular melted butter, but as you’ll see in the video, I like to toast mine just a little, to bring out those subtle, nutty flavors. I’m hoping Armand Cianfoni would approve. I really hope you give “our” strawberry shortcake a try soon. Enjoy!

Makes 6 Large or 8 Normal Strawberry Shortcakes:

2 cups self rising flour ((You can make you own by sifting together 2 cups of all-purpose flour with 1 tablespoon baking powder, and 1 teaspoon fine salt)

1/4 cup sugar

1/4 cup heavy cream

1/2 cup milk

4 tbsp butter, melted, and lightly toasted to a golden-brown

4 pints fresh strawberries

1/2 cup white sugar

*add 1 tbsp water, if strawberries aren’t perfectly ripe

3/4 cup cold heavy cream, whipped with a tablespoon of sugar and a few drops of vanilla (watch demo here)

– Bake at 425F.  for 15-18 minutes or until browned.

Braised Lamb with Radishes and Mint (and Anchovies, but Don’t Tell Anyone)

I had a fantastic appetizer recently featuring lamb belly, radishes, anchovies, and mint, which inspired today’s post. It sounded amazing, but I’d only glanced at the description, so when it came, I was more than a little surprised to see the radishes were fully cooked.

This was a new one for me, and I absolutely loved it. Like most root vegetables, radishes don’t have a ton of flavor, but I found them slightly sweet, earthy (duh), and aromatic. Plus, they seemed to have effectively absorbed all the other flavors in the dish.

One thing led to another, and I adapted the approach to create one of the more interesting and delicious things I’ve had in a while. I called it a “flavor bomb” in the video, but “umami bomb” would be more accurate. This was as savory, as savory gets.

Because of all the sweet flavors going on, I decided not to add any sauteed onions or garlic, which is contrary to most braised meat recipes. It probably wouldn’t have hurt anything, and I might try it next time, but to be honest, this came out so perfectly balanced, that I’m a little scared change anything.

And no, you can’t taste the anchovies. That doesn’t mean you should tell anyone they’re in there, but I did want to mention, in case you’re scared. I would like to thankAatxe for the inspiration, and I really hope you give this strange, but exciting braised lamb dish and try soon. Enjoy!

Makes 4 Portions:

4  lamb shoulder chops (10-12 ounces each)

1 tablespoon kosher salt (or about 2 tsp of table salt)

1 teaspoon black  pepper

1 teaspoon paprika

1/4 tsp cayenne

1 tbsp olive oil

1/3 cup sherry vinegar

2 tablespoons sugar

4 oil-packed anchovy fillets

1 1/2 cups low-sodium or no sodium chicken broth (the anchovies and spice rub on the lamb usually provide enough salt, plus you can add at the end after sauce is reduced)

1/4 tsp cinnamon

2 bunches breakfast radishes, trimmed

2 tsp minced fresh rosemary
5 or 6 fresh mint leaves finely sliced

1 tbsp cold butter

– Braise at 275 F. for about 3 hour , or until meat is just barely tender, then finish at 425 F. to brown. Serve with de-fatted and reduced sauce.

Cooking tips

How to make Cashewnut paste
Soak a 8-10 whole cashewnuts in 1/4 cup of warm water for 15-20 mins. Grind it to smooth paste along with the water used for soaking. Adding cashewnut paste makes gravies thicker and creamy.
How to make homemade Garam Masala
Fennel Seeds –  1 tbsp

Cloves – 10
Cinnamon stick  – 2
Cardamom  –  4
Star anise –  1
Whole black pepper corns -15 – 20
Dry roast all the ingredients lightly in a pan at medium heat for about 2-3 mts. When it cools down, grind to a fine powder and store in an airtight container.

How to soften store bought Paneer
Store bought paneer is often hard than homemade ones. This could be due to being in the cooler racks for many days. To make the paneer soft, cut them into cubes and soak in hot water for 10 minutes. Drain to a kitchen towel and pat dry.


How to Puree tomatoes
1. Boil tomatoes in hot water for 5-10 mins.
2. Peel off the skin and remove and discard the seeds.
3. Grind the tomato into a smooth paste in a mixer.

How to extract tamarind pulp
1. Soak tamarind in hot water for 5-10 mins.
2. Mash it with your fingers to form a pulp.
3. Filter it using a sieve.

Cooking Tips and Tricks

  1. Add 1 tbls of fruit jam in a glass of cold milk,blend well and a quick delicious fruit shake  is ready for kids
  2.  Add 2 tbls pickle masala, 2 tbls pickle oil  and a pinch of salt in a cup of wheat flour to make delicious achari poori’s for breakfast and as a travel food.
  3. Add 1 tbls left over pickle masala in regular subzi to make achari aloo,achari bhindi and achari brinjal or any dry curry of your choice..
  4.  Add kiwi fruit,green apple,oranges,berries or any sour  or over ripe fruit to make  coriander chutney more nutritious.
  5. While making coriander chutney add few nuts of your choice to make it more nutritious and to increase its shelf life.
  6. If you have added too much chilli powder in a gravy then add some curd ,lemon juice or 2 .t.s ghee in it to balance it.
  7. If your  gulab jamuns turn out hard ,don’t worry,just put them  in the pressure cooker with sugar -syrup  and cook for 5 minute on medium heat  and then serve warm with a smile.
  8.  While making home made potato chips,mix some alum powder in the water and soak the chips in it,before boiling.
  9. While grinding red chili powder add little mustard oil in it to get a bright red colour.
  10. Its much easier to grind small cardamom if you add some sugar to it while grinding.
  11. Add 1 tbls gram flour in semolina for making delicious sooji halwa .
  12. While making gravy for a kofta or paneer dish ,use milk instead of water  for smoother gravy
  13. If asafoetida  become too hard then keep a green chilli with it.
  14. If you are short of tomatoes to make gravy, then add some  tomato ketchup.
  15. Add little bounvita in coffee for a  delicious twist in the taste.
  16. Grease the leftover dough with slight oil or ghee  before covering and  storing it in the refrigerator.
  17. Add little glycerine in the cake batter to make it more soft and moist.
  18. Add some routine spices and a bread in leftover rice ,mash the mixture well and make crispy fritters.
  19. After  making cottage cheese/paneer don’t throw the whey, use it the to make roti dough or use in any curry.
  20. Add a pinch of dried mint powder in tomato soup to make it more flavourful.
  21. Add a apple with potatoes ,they will stay fresh and will not sprout easily.
  22. If facing difficulty in rolling aloo parantha,,then add add some dry roasted gram flour or little bread crumbs in the filling,it will not come out while rolling.
  23. Try to  add whole curry leaf spring  in the dish,it will be easy to remove after cooking.
  24. Use scissor to chop green chillies and coriander.
  25. While boiling potatoes add some salt or vinegar in the water, to avoid cracking while boiling.
  26. Use white tooth powder to clean your silvarware and silvar jewellary.
  27. If you have added extra salt in the dish,don’t worry just add a peeled raw potato or a ball of wheta flour dough and boil for a minute,then discard the potato or flour ball.
  28. If your rice are burned,don’t worry just put a slice of bread in the pan for 10 minute,bread will absorb the burned flavour.
  29. Freeze left over coffee in ice try and next time when you make cold coffee ,use these cubes instead of plain ice cubes
  30. To remove worms from cauliflower ,add some white vinegar or turmeric in the water and soak the florets in it for 10 minutes.
  31. Add 1 t.s white vinegar in idli batter to make softer idlis.
  32. Add some gram flour or semolina in wheat flour to make crisp poori’s.
  33. To enhance the flavour of coffee ,add a pinch of salt into it.

Tips for household maintenance: 

Stain Removal:

  1. Stains  from  your crockery or melamine ware-add 2 caps of bleach/clorex in 2 lit water and soak your crockery overnight.
  2. Remove stains from inside the pressure cooker-add some vinegar or lemon peels in 2 cup water and pressure cook for 2 whistle and scrub well.
  3. Remove oil paint stains- rub with white spirit.
  4. Remove carbon paper stains- with spirit.
  5. Remove fungus stains from leather -first rub with candle wax and then wipe with soft cloth.
  6. Ink stains from leather -use nail polish remover and clean
  7. Clean suede shoes and bags -rub them with sandpaper.
  8. Remove stains from your aluminium pans-just boil some apple peels in it.
  9. Remove grease from gas stove or pan -apply oven cleaner or paint thinner and wash easily afterwards .
  10. Remove mould from the walls-mix 1 cup of bleach in a gallon of water and scrub well then wash well with water.
  11. To open the cloged gas stove burners-soak overnight in soda aur drain opener solution.
  12. To remove wax from cloth and sheets -put them in the frezzer and peel off when becom hard.
  13.  To remove sticker-use a hair dryer for few minutes ,and then peel off the sticker.
  14. To remove the calcium build up from your electric kettle- just boil a mixture of half vinegar and half water and then wash off.
  15.  Pour your leftover cola drink in the toilet bowl to make it cleaner

Smell / Odour removal:

  1. To remove the smell of kitchen sponge , soak it in water with a little white vinegar or lemon juice , then heat in microwave for 1 minute.
  2. Keep a small open box of baking powder in the refrigerator to absorb all smells.
  3. To remove the smell from the tharmas flask -wash it with salted buttermilk.OR wash with water and baking soda mixture.
  4. Light a candle in the room to get rid of cigarette odour from the room.
  5. To remove the carpet odour -take a box of baking soda and spread on the floor for some time and then remove.
  6. Stinky sink-mix equal quantity of bleach and hot water and pour in the sink,pour hot water after 5 minutes,
  7. Add few drops of  your old and expired perfume in the water ,for moping your room flour.
  8. Urine and bacteria smell in carpet-mix 1 part vinegar and 3 part water and rub it on the carpet.rinse it with water after an hour and sun dry.

Keeping flowers fresh –

  1. Flowers stays fresher in copper flower vase.
  2. Add aspirin tablet or copper coin in flowerpot ,will stays fresh longer.
  3. Add little boric powder in carnation flowers,will stays fresh longer.
  4. Soak dried coconut husk in water and add in moneyplant pot.
  5. Use the water from your fish tank to water your plants,as the fish dropping will work as a great fertilizer

Controlling Pests-

  1. Ants-Add few cloves in sugar container to avoid ant attack.
  2. To discourage ants ,sprinkle some cigareete ash or petroleum jelly near their opening/colonies.
  3. Keep a spray bottle with soapy water handy  and spray the ants with it.
  4. Sprinkle some turmeric or chalk powder near ant colonies.
  5. Coackroaches-Make small balls from boric powder,sugar and flour and keep in the cupboard and kitchen corners to avoid cockroches.
  6. Spray soapy water directly on coackroaches to kill them.
  7. Dust mites-vaccum your mattresses and pillows regularly
  8. Dust bedding with tannic acid powder to remove dust mites.
  9. Mosquitos-burning camphor is a good mosquito repellent.
  10. Put some neem oil on a used mosquito repellent mat and use,neem oil is a natural  and effective repellent.
  11. Plant some merigild around your house,insects and mosquitos don’t like its fragrance and stay off.
  12. Flies-put few drops of eucalyptus oil in a cotton ball and keep in every room.
  13. Keep small sachets of dried mint powder around your house.
  14. Use the water from your fish tank to water your plants,as the fish dropping will work as a great fertilizer.

Baking Homemade Brownies

Baking homemade brownies is one of life’s sweetest delights. The smell of the brownies baking in the oven never fails to attract every family member to the kitchen to await the finished treat. When they are finally done it doesn’t take but a few seconds for them to disappear, having been devoured by everyone who could get a hold of one.

The only hard part of preparing brownies is the preparation and the cleanup afterward. It takes longer to prepare and bake brownies than it does for them to be eaten, especially if they come out delicious. For this very reason many people prefer to buy brownies from the store and miss out on the deliciousness of home-made brownies. Following these simple tips ensures that you will have delicious brownies that the whole family can enjoy with little or no hassle.

1. Don’t over mix when preparing the batter and if possible mix the batter by hand. This will ensure that the brownie does not come out bland or too dry.

2. Spay the bottom of the pan with non-stick cooking spray, making sure to cover the surface evenly. You can also dust the pan lightly with cocoa powder. Using cocoa powder ensures that you won’t have white residue on your brownies as you would if you were to use flour.

3. Follow the recipe instructions carefully especially the temperature and cooking time instructions. To test if the brownies are done stick a toothpick into the brownies. If they come out clean it means that the brownies are done.

4. If you want to keep the brownies from over-drying you can wrap them with plastic wrap and put them in a zip bag for added protection.

As a final tip: enjoy your brownies with your whole family, give them as gifts, share them with your co-workers, and don’t forget to make plenty for everyone.