Quick & Easy

Sundae best

Sundae best: add quick toppings to ice cream for deliciously easy desserts - Food: Summer EntertainingIce cream means instant dessert. It waits in the freezer, always on call, ready to appear au naturel or dressed up for a celebration.

Date food

Date food: trick her into thinking you're a gourmet cook with this quick and easy mealBeef, like this filet mignon, is a great source of CLA--CONJUGATED LINOLEIC ACID--a type of good fat that has been shown in studies to help increase muscle mass and decrease levels of body fat.

Quick, healthy dishes

Quick, healthy dishes - recipesChicken and Vegetables With Penne makes a hearty one-dish meal. Note: To save time, prep foods-slice, dice and so on-as other items cook.

Go fish

Go fish: start with seafood for a quick, tasty dinner - WeeknightPutting a balanced meal on the table every night is a challenge when work and family compete for your attention. But eating well might be easier than you think--if you think fish. It cooks quickly and is a lean source of protein and iron.

Salad days

Salad days: rice chills out for an easy weeknight meal - Food: Quick CookThis salad is a simplified, lightened version of Richard Wong's original. Make your own seasoning sauce as directed here or, for a shortcut, use a purchased sauce such as his Chinablue Sesame Soy Sauce.


Dry Your Own Herbs

Fresh herbs have many wonderful properties. When you dry them carefully many of these properties are preserved. The following fourteen tips will help you to dry your herbs successfully. Tip 1 Pick your herbs just before you plan to dry them. They are just right when they are fully developed and just commencing budding. Pick off any damaged leaves or dead bits of stem.

Tip 2 Have a good look over the bunch and ensure that your herbs are insect-free. It is not recommended that you wash your herbs once picked unless they really need it. If your herbs look like they need washing, you could hose them a day or two before you pick them, allow them to dry, then cut your bunches for drying. Tip 3 Have everything ready so that you can prepare the herbs for drying as soon as you cut them.

Tip 4 To allow the herbs to dry at a similar rate, gather them in similar size bunches. For each drying bunch - tie about 8 - 10 stems together. Tip 5 For the majority of the herb bunches, tie their stems together with string and hang upside down. Some of the larger bunches of herbs can be hung on a hook or wire by themselves. But, remember to hang them upside down. Tip 6 If your drying location is at risk of contamination (e.

g. dust, smoke, wind) place a paper bag (or other cover) over your herbs. Tip 7 A warm, dry, dark location is the best place to dry your herbs. (e.g.

shed, loft or pantry cupboard) Tip 8 In the right conditions, it takes approximately five days for your herbs to dry. In cooler conditions, it may take up to two weeks for your herbs to dry. The best temperature for drying herbs is around 30o C (85o F).

Tip 9 It is OK to dry different types of herbs at the same time. Just make sure that you do not place them too close together. If the herbs are too close together the properties of one herb may taint the other.

Tip 10 When the herbs leaves are papery (fragile) the drying is complete. If your herb leaves collapse when touched, you have let the drying process go on for too long. Tip 11 To store your herbs, remove the leaves from the stems. Try to keep the leaves intact as best as you can, in as larger pieces as possible, even whole leaves if you can. This will help your herbs to keep their wonderful qualities.

Tip: Gather the dried leaves on a piece of paper. Use the paper to pour your dried leaves into an airtight container. Tip 12 Do not commence drying another batch of herbs until previous batches of herbs are ready. Tip 13 Store your newly dried herbs away from sunlight.

Ensure your container is airtight, preferably glass and even better if you have a dark glass container. Tip 14 Crush your herbs just before you plan to use them. Some herbs suitable for hang drying are: rosemary, sage, lemon balm, wormwood, lovage, parsley, mint and lavender.

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