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Archive for February, 2010

Do you have a fruit bowl on the counter or table with apples and oranges in it?  If so, it is time to separate them to extend their shelf life and keep your fruit fresh and crisp.

The best place to store apples is the refrigerator because warmer temperatures will shorten the life of your apples. Keep apples close to 32ºF to extend their shelf life 8 to 10 times longer than apples stored at room temperature.

Citrus is best stored in the refrigerator too.  Use a mesh bag or a basket so air can circulate around them, plastic bags can make them moldy.

Apples and oranges stored together omit a gas that will break them down faster, so if you like your fruit room temperature I suggest take it out the night before and leave on the counter.

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Whom do you consider to be a celebrity?  According to Webster’s Dictionary, a celebrity is “a widely known person.”  I’m a bit more picky in my take on the definition—there are so many “celebrity wannabes” that I think the term gets watered down.

When I think of celebrity, I think of the word’s root and the “celebrating” of a person.  If I really reflect on it, a celebrity (to me) is someone who’s well known but also likable, interesting, and has that “cool” factor—someone who’d be fascinating to talk to but with whom you can relate.  Under my more restrictive definition, in my book some celebrities (i.e. Paris Hilton or Lindsey Lohan) wouldn’t technically qualify to be celebrities, while others (Natalie Portman and Jennifer Garner) would.  I’m sure the editors of People magazine—and many of you reading this as well—would disagree!  But when I think of celebrating someone, from my perspective, some stars have qualities I celebrate and value, while others do not.  However, I admit that my view of certain celebrities could simply be because they have better or worse PR reps than others—it’s a rare person who gets to see stars face to face and know what they’re truly like when the cameras aren’t rolling. (more…)

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If you saw the movie Julie & Julia you might remember it’s genesis…Julie, a passionate young cook is inspired by Julia Childs and begins a year long adventure preparing Juila’s recipes from the “Mastering the Art of French Cooking“.  So meet Cathy Erway, a NYC food enthusiast, living in our nations restaurant capital who decides to eat in every day for two years!  Not Eating Out in NYC is her blog which much like Julie’s blog from “Julie & Julia”, chronicles  her journey of health, money saving and living more green tips and techniques.

Next week, in honor of Cathy’s book release, The Art of Eating In, The Huffington Post has created their own challenge.  They are doing a weeklong experiment, February 22-28,  inviting all of us to make the pledge of eating in for a week.  They are encouraging us to:

  • try a new recipe
  • recreate an old family recipe
  • host your first dinner party
  • bake your first cake
  • buy local

According to Cathy’s experience, by placing a small amount of time and effort in our daily bread, we are earning much more in return.  Cathy experienced health benefits from cooking her own food. By putting her own condiments on and preparing her food with just the right amounts of oils and fats she was able to know where all of her calories came from.  She also became much more aware of how often styrofoam and cardboard containers were being thrown  into the recycling bins when she no longer “carried out”.  Needless to say, she realized a significant financial return on buying all of her own food and preparing it herself.

For inspiration, check out Cathy’s blog, Not Eating Out in NYC, download some of The Best Apps for eating in, check out our Easy Eats ideas on the Coborns Delivers site,  and most of all, have fun!  You might even find out there’s a cook locked up in you just waiting to get out.

We would love to hear from you about your eating in experiences.  Remember, ANY time is a good time to eat in!

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As winter rolls on (April’s only one and a half months away!), it’s good to keep your pets’ warmth in mind. For dogs that spend time outside every day, there are ways to keep warm beyond the booties and sweaters shameless owners (like myself) outfit their pooches with. Think beyond what you put on your dog and instead what you put in our dog. Just like using more energy burns more calories, so does staying warm.

Tupper (@tupper_w on Twitter) and the booties he's forced to wear

To begin with, there is a lot of basic advice dog owners can find online to help guide them through determining how much chow to feed their pup. If you like a detailed read, “Phouka Dog Pages” offers advice for all sizes, ages and activity levels. For some basic advice, ehow.com offers some general guidelines. There are even calculators on-line that will tell you how much to feed based on activity levels, size and the caloric content of your food. I found the calculator from dogfoodadvisor.com to be mostly accurate.

So, with your next grocery order, consider the temperature before you determine the quantity of dog food you’ll be buying. Or, if you REALLY love your dog and want to treat him as well as you treat yourself, go to Raw4dogs.com to determine how many groceries you’ll need for you AND your dog. 🙂

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One of the areas that I help my clients with is working with them to understand the importance of planning your meals before writing your shopping list.  Planning a weekly menu not only reduces the time and money you spend on food by reducing waste and spoilage, it also gives you control over what goes into each meal you prepare.

One trick I use from all my years managing restaurants is to write a weekly feature card displaying the meals for the week. Once I have the feature card done the grocery list almost writes itself.  Just look in the freezer, refrigerator and pantry to see what items are missing to complete your favorite recipes.  This will significantly simplify your ordering process so that you can do your grocery shopping in just minutes!

Another tip I recommend is to post the feature card on the refrigerator so the first person home knows the plan and can help get dinner started.

One more note:  Get the whole family involved in preparing the meal.  This does so many positive things.  Your kids learn how to cook.  Cooking uses both sides of their brain; there is math, measurements, chemistry, planning, organization, life skills and plenty of room to be creative.  Cooking helps encourage a willingness to try new foods and builds self confidence and a sense of pride when you sit down as a family at the table to share the meal you prepared together.

So bring in your tubs of groceries and gather the family and start cooking!

Stacy Klone

KitchenWerks

KitchenWerks.org

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I am all for simplicity.  That is one of the reasons I use Coborns Delivers in the first place.  I didn’t think it could get any easier than having groceries delivered to my door– until I found the “Easy Eats” tab on the website.

Intuitive.  Ingenious.  Irreplaceable.               Easy Eats

This simple tab provides not only easy menu ideas, which so far have each been a huge hit with my family and friends alike, but it also provides…the SHOPPING LIST!  The Easy Eats tab has amazingly user-friendly features.  You can browse by topics, like Comfort Foods or Crock Pot, or by category, like Beef, Poultry or Fish.  Or even by occasion, like Super Bowl or Weeknight dinner.  Each recipe pops up with a clear itemized ingredient list (categorized by “Key” or “On Hand” items) on the right side bar, where you can simply click to place that item directly in your shopping cart without leaving the page.  The recipes come with a printer friendly icon, to make printing out a breeze when it comes time for preparation.

Quite simply, this is one of the best features I have seen yet from Coborns.   Looking to try it?  Begin with two of my favorites, Beef Stroganoff with Porcini mushrooms (found under the Main Ingredient – Beef  tab) or the Coffee Almond Ice Cream Torte (found under the Meal Occasion – Desserts and Snacks tab).  Happy Shopping – and eating!

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This past week I’ve been telling friends about CobornsDelivers and am often asked, “Why would you want to do that?” “You love to spend time in the store” and “Would you trust them to pick the best produce for your family?”

I can answer the questions with a resounding “yes”!  After touring the facility and meeting the produce manger to discover how they grade the produce from good, better, to best and pass that information on to their customer I believe each Coborns customer will find hand selected, fresh items on their doorstep.

As part of KitchenWerks (the organization I run) I train consumers how to plan a weekly menu and write the shopping list to save both time and money …and I have found that not everyone enjoys time in the grocery store. CobornsDelivers has now become my recommended solution to satisfy their needs.  Look for helpful tips, techniques and ways that I can help you be more efficient in the kitchen while saving time and money.

Stacy works with clients to organize their kitchens with the precision of a restaurant in order to help save time and money while preparing healthy, home-cooked meals. Stacy Klone, founder of KitchenWerks, is a self-proclaimed “organizing foodie” or “foodie organizer.”

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