How To Make: Portobello Mushroom Burgers

One of the most popular things people grill on the barbeque is the burger. The recipes vary, of course, but the vast majority of burgers are made of ground beef, though ground pork, turkey, and chicken burgers are rising in popularity.

Vegetarians often have to have tofu burgers or chickpea patties. Unfortunately, the lack of popular options often restricts them and reduces their desire for burgers. You have to vary things in order to stay interested, right?

Well, did you know you can use Portobello mushrooms to make the most delicious burgers? Ones that might even fool those who eat meat? It is all in the meaty nature of the mushroom, as well as the seasonings you choose.

The seasonings and marinades are up to you, of course, but here are some suggestions:

  • Vinegar, olive oil, basil, oregano, salt, pepper, and garlic
  • Soy sauce, steak spice, and olive oil
  • Balsamic vinegar, garlic, thyme, olive oil, and mustard

Adjust the amounts based on how many burgers you want to make. You can also play around with these seasonings based on personal taste.

Regardless of the specific spices you want on your Portobello burger, make sure you mix them well and marinate your Portobello mushrooms in the mixture for roughly 20 to 30 minutes. You can then put them on the barbeque, flipping about 10 minutes into the grill.

Pay attention to when your mushroom starting to shrink a little, as this is a sure indicator you are almost ready to take it off the grill. You may also have to flip more than once! We also recommend basting the mushroom in the leftover marinade a little bit, just to increase flavour.

While the mushroom is grilling, prepare your desired toppings, including the typical burger condiments, pickles, even lettuce, tomato, and onion. You can also add cheese to your Portobello burger, if you are sure to slice it and place it on top of the burger for the last couple of minutes. Once you put cheese on your burger, you will not be able to flip it anymore, which is why you need to leave it until the end.

Once everything is done on the grill, all you need to do is assemble your burger and enjoy!

How To Make: Grillable Pizza

Do you love pizza? We are willing to bet you do, whether it is Canadian, meat lover’s, vegetarian, deluxe, or any other topping combination. The vast majority of people will order pizza for delivery or bake their own in the oven, whether it was made from scratch or from a premade frozen pizza.

But what happens if you do not want to order delivery and the weather outside is too hot for you to heat your home even more by using the oven? Do you have to forgo your desire for pizza? Absolutely not! It is time to fire up the grill and make your pizza that way!

You can, of course, make a pizza from frozen on the grill, but why not go the extra mile and do as much of this process yourself? It really is not too complicated, either!

The Crust

The first thing you have to consider is the crust for your pizza. You can buy a large premade crust at your local grocery store, but we also love using the Greek pitas you cannot fill as crusts for our grilled pizza. Judge your sizing for the pizza based on how many people you need to feed, as well as if you are camping or not (yes, the pitas are perfect for camping).

Sauce and Toppings

Of course, you are also going to need some pizza sauce. Choose your favourite or make your own and spread it evenly on top of your crust. Once you are ready, fill your pizza with your favourite toppings, including pepperoni, sliced mushrooms, cooked bacon, sliced green peppers, and olives. Of course, you cannot forget a generous amount of mozzarella cheese!

How To Grill

The next step after you finish prepping your pizza with your desired toppings is to grill it! Transfer your pizza onto your grill. Try to keep the grill at 350 to 400 degrees, depending on how fast you want to cook your pizza. Keep in mind you do not want to have your crust cook before your toppings are ready, because otherwise you will either face under cooked toppings (not melted cheese!) or a burnt crust. Adjust the temperature throughout the cook as necessary, since barbeques will vary. Make sure to keep the lid closed as much as possible during the grilling process.

Top 4 Barbequed Desserts

So you have just finished eating your delicious dinner you made on the barbeque. You are ready for dessert. Did you know you can make delectable desserts on the barbeque as well? Here are four sinfully delicious and simple desserts you can make on the barbeque:

Grilled Peaches

This one is a classic! Just cut open a peach through the middle, remove the pit, and stick it on the grill. You can use flavouring like maple syrup if you choose, but some people state this is not necessary. Flip the peach after a few minutes and grill a little longer. Once you have the colour you want to see, take the peach off the grill. You can eat this on its own and it will be delicious, but it also pairs well with vanilla ice cream or frozen yogurt.

Grilled Pineapple

Like peaches, pineapples taste great when you grill them. Slice this fruit into rings and remove the stem and skin. Place the pineapple rings on the grill and flip them every so often. Once you achieve the colour you want, take them off. Once again you can eat this fruit on its own, but pairing it with something like ice cream or frozen yogurt makes for such as delectable dessert.

Fruit Skewers

This one was always coming! Cut your favourite fruit into bite-sized pieces so you can skewer it. Once this I done, place the fruit skewers on the barbeque and rotate frequently. This grilling process should not take more than 10 minutes, depending on the size of the skewer. Like the peaches, you can coat the fruit in a light layer of maple syrup, but the natural sweetness also means this is not necessary.

Chocolate Chip Cookies

Yes, you can make chocolate chip cookies on the barbeque! Make your favourite dough from scratch or grab some premade dough to start. Then, spray some aluminum foil with non-stick spray before placing the foil onto the barbeque. Place the dough onto the foil as you would on a normal cookie sheet. Close the lid of your barbeque and wait. Regularly check on the cookies since the cooking time will vary based on the heat of the grill.

How To Make Iced Tea

Do you love a comforting cup of tea in the winter? Hot tea is great, but sometimes summer can get too hot to enjoy this hot beverage. The good news? You can ice it! Here’s how you can make the perfect pitcher of iced tea to enjoy on the patio this sunny summer.

Step 1: Choose Your Tea

What kind of tea do you like? In terms of form, both bagged and loose leaf tea will work for iced tea. You’ll likely just have a little more work to make loose leaf iced tea, but it is still a simple process overall.

We advise herbal or other fruity teas for this, though you can also make iced green tea should you wish. Teas like English Breakfast or Earl Grey, while amazing blends for hot tea, do not work as well as iced tea.

Step 2: Boil Water

Why would you boil water if you are making iced tea? You do it because your tea needs the hot water in order to steep and release their flavour. While you wait for the water to boil, move onto the next step.

Step 3: Prep Your Pitcher

If you are making loose leaf iced tea, you are likely going to need a pitcher with a built-in infuser, or other infusers you can dunk into the pitcher. Put the tea in the infuser or straight into the pitcher if it’s bagged tea). You will need double the amount of tea you would normally put in for a cup of hot tea (e.g. if you put in one bag or teaspoon per normal cup, put in two for iced tea).

Step 4: Pour and Steep

Once your water is ready, pour it into the pitcher with tea. Only fill you pitcher halfway if you plan to drink your iced tea soon. Otherwise, you could fill up the whole pitcher with the hot water if you want. Wait for four to seven minutes for steeping (adjust based on the specific tea you are making)before taking the tea bag or infuser out of the pitcher.

Step 5: Add Ice

If you are going to drink your tea right away, fill up the rest of the pitcher with ice cubes to drop the temperature as fast as possible. If you are saving the tea for later, you can just top up the pitcher will cool water if you need to, or just put the full hot pitcher into the fridge.

Step 6: Enjoy!

You’re ready! Pour the tea into a glass and enjoy the summer sun on the patio while sipping your cool, refreshing beverage.

All About Campfire Cooking

Are you going camping with family or friends this summer? Wondering what you are going to cook while you are out there in the wilderness? Sometimes the idea of cooking much of anything besides prepackaged dried food is overwhelming, particularly if you are planning to go camping in a canoe armed only with what you can carry on your back. The good news? You can do a lot more than you think! Here are some inventive and popular meals you can cook over a campfire.

Foil Packet Food

Have you ever cooked something wrapped in aluminum foil on the barbeque at home? You can recreate the same recipe but cook it in or near your campfire. You just have to pay more attention to timing, since you cannot regulate the temperature of your campfire. We recommend seasoned vegetables like zucchini or corn for foil packets, particularly if you do not have access to ice and a cooler. This means no raw meat if you are canoe camping!

Fired Up Potatoes

Potatoes are a great thing to bring camping with you, since you do not need to refrigerate them! All you need to do is bring your favourite spices (start with salt and pepper) and some butter or oil to brush over the potato. As for method, you can either cook it in foil or on a stick. If you have a foldable grill to put over the fire, you could use that as well.

Camping Style Pizza

Yes, you can make pizza while you are camping! All you need is bottled pizza sauce, cooked pepperoni and bacon, cheese, and some pitas (not fillable ones). Ideally you will have a foldable grill to put over the fire for this camping meal, but you can also use foil if you want to.

Skewers

Doesn’t everything taste great on a stick? Skewers are often seen at barbeque parties, street fairs, and more because of this (as well as their convenience). You can skewer vegetables like zucchini, sections of corn on the cob, mushroom, peppers, and potatoes, as well as any meat you want to, including freshly caught fish! You can use a foldable grill, obviously, but if you use a long enough skewer (and protect your hands) you can cook your dinner just like you would a marshmallow!

5 Tips for Going Vegan

Are you thinking about abandoning meat and all other animal products? Going vegan has many benefits, both for those looking to change because of morals or even dietary requirements. However, transitioning to veganism, particularly if you are not a vegetarian and still consume meat, can be a challenge. Make the transition smoother with these tips for going vegan.

Consult a Dietitian

Going vegan is often not as simple as some think, particularly if you think about all the nutrients everyone needs for a healthy diet. IF you are in doubt about what you need each day, or need any other recommendations or answers to specific questions, we highly recommend talking to a registered dietitian. They can help advise you based on your specific situation and requirements.

Go At Your Own Pace

When you want to go vegan, one of the most important things to do is to go at your own pace. Can you make the switch overnight? It would be a tall order for many people, but if that is the type of thing you think you could handle, go for it. In all likelihood, however, you will need to transition over a longer period. Perhaps you might want to try going vegetarian for a little while first before making the complete change. This adjustment time can help curb your cravings and chances for sliding backwards.

Give Additional Cooking Time

Even if you are used to cooking, designing your meals only around vegetables and vegan-friendly options can be challenging. For the first little while, be sure to allot extra time in the kitchen. Also take time to research a variety of new recipes and build your roster!

Embrace The Produce Section

Yes, there are frozen meals vegans can eat. However, this can make for an unhealthy and lackluster diet if this is all you are eating. Thus, spend lots of time in the produce section. When you are making the change, aim to choose at least one vegetable or fruit you have not tried yet and incorporate it into your diet. You will be surprised at what you find and what you can create. Before you know it, your meals will look like rainbows!

Bring Your Own Food

Unfortunately, going to potlucks can be a challenge if you are a vegan. You can mention it to the others, but you should also be aware that many of the dishes will be unsuitable. Regardless, you can help the situation by cooking vegan friendly dishes everyone can enjoy. Did you know you could make vegan brownies? There are also countless salads or three-bean chilis you can make for potlucks.

Benefits of Cooking In A Slow Cooker

Are you considering buying a slow cooker to add to your array of kitchen equipment? Wondering why you should invest in one, if you can easily cook your meals on the stove? There are quite a few benefits to cooking your meals in a slow cooker, regardless of if you have a family or are just cooking for yourself. Let’s review the mains ones now!

No Heat In The Summer

During the summer the days can get quite hot. Unfortunately, using oyur oven, particularly during the day, can make your kitchen almost unbearable. Cookign meals in a slow cooker helps avoid heating your home unnecessarily. You can still eat nutritious meals, but without all of the uncomfortable sweating!

Cozy Comfort In The Winter

Do you want a bowl of insanely delicious chili? What about comforting macaroni and cheese? Your slow cooker provides the perfect way for you to have comfort food throughout the winter months. Go ahead, get comfortable. Why not curl up at the fire after dinner?

Perfect For Busy Days

Are you running around all day? Busy at work or school? Do you have to shuttle your kids around to various activities? You can make dinner easy while also making sure it is still nutritious by using your slow cooker. All you really need to do is a little food preparation. Then all it needs is to be plugged in and set to cook! You can even find recipes online that you can put in a bag in your freezer until you need to dump them into your slow cooker, so your preparation doesn’t even need to be on the same busy day!

Lots of Leftovers

Depending on how many people you have to cook for, slow cookers are a great way to produce lots of leftovers you can then freeze and pull out throughout the week as you need them. For instance, some slow cooker recipes will make enough food for six or seven meals, which means you have dinner that night, and then at least lunches for the whole week! This can save lots of time for busy individuals.

High Volume Cooking

Looking to cook for a lot of people at once? Going to a potluck? Instead of the benefit of lots of leftovers from your slow cooker—popular for couples and individuals—it is worth noting slow cookers make it easy to cook for lots of people at once. If this is the purpose you are considering buying a slow cooker for, be sure to pay attention to the sizes available. Pay attention to the recipes you choose, and whether or not you need to adjust the amount of ingredients based on the number of servings you need.

3 Alternatives to Cow’s Milk

These days it is not uncommon for people to look for alternative to their regular cow’s milk, whether it’s because they are lactose intolerant or are quite allergic to dairy products, or if they are looking for lower fat alternatives, even if they could safely consume cow’s milk. In fact, the use of milk alternatives is so prevalent that many might say there really is no “regular” milk anymore.

Regardless of why you want to find an alternative to cow’s milk, it can be confusing for someone first considering the idea. To help make the transition easier, here are details on five of the most popular alternative’s to cow’s milk.

Soy Milk

Made from soybeans, you can find soy milk in both sweetened and unsweetened varieties. In addition to the original flavour, some brands also offer chocolate, vanilla, or even cappuccino flavour of soy milk. Out of all the alternatives, soy milk is perhaps the most prevalent, and tends to be the first one others might recommend if you want to make the switch, even if you only consume it as a transition to another alternative.

For the most part soy milk is the nutritional equivalent to cow’s milk, though makers often have to fortify it with calcium and vitamins A and D in order for that to happen. Another good thing about soy milk is that just about all varieties have between eight and 10 grams of protein per portion.

However, some report soy milk can cause severe allergic reactions, and some reports indicate the soy in the milk can negatively influence fertility in men and women (thought this also linked to overconsumption).

Almond Milk

Next to soy milk, almond milk is the next on the list of most popular cow milk alternatives. As you might expect, it is made from almonds and water. Naturally, this milk alternative contains quite a lot of vitamin E. Some brands even reach half of your recommended daily intake in one cup. Another significant benefit, particularly for those looking to reduce the fat and calories they consume, is how most varieties of almond milk contain only one third of the calories of 2% cow’s milk.

Coconut Milk

In terms of texture, coconut milk is perhaps the closest to whole cow’s milk, though this is, in part, because it is normally quite high in fat.

It is, however, a great option for those allergic to gluten and soy, since it contains neither. It is also an excellent choice for baked good because of its nutty flavour.

Unfortunately, drawbacks other than the fat content include a lack of nutritional value when compared to cow’s milk.

Types Of Vinegar

When most people think of vinegar, they tend to imagine the kind they will put on their fries. Most people also know they can use that same vinegar for turning small cucumbers into pickles. Beyond these uses, however, things get a little more complicated. Many people are not even aware of the sheer number of different types of vinegar there are on store shelves! To that end, here are four of the most popular types of vinegar available, including some of their most popular uses.

White Vinegar

In addition to its culinary uses in making ketchup, many commercial salad dressings, and a common condiment for French fries in some countries, white vinegar has a number of different uses in your home. For instance, it is great at removing calcium buildup. If your kettle is getting a film on the inside, simply pour in some white vinegar (you can dilute it slightly with water) and set it to boil. Just remember to rinse it out and boil at least one round of pure water in it before you actually make hot water to drink in tea, coffee, et cetera.

Apple Cider Vinegar

Apple cider vinegar has a mellow taste, which makes it a good addition to many different recipes and sauces. It also tops many lists of natural medicinal remedies for things like reducing GI distress, lowering inflammation, and some reports even suggest it helps manage diabetes. Apple cider vinegar is also extremely popular when it comes to natural cleaning solutions.

Rice Vinegar

Like apple cider vinegar (and most other types), rice vinegar makes a good addition to your cleaning regime. All you need to do is dilute it with some water to clean counters, wash the floors, et cetera. In addition, rice vinegar is very popular in Asian recipes, including stir-fries, and as a part of Asian salad dressing (e.g. for a cucumber and sesame salad).

It is also an excellent choice for sprinkling over vegetable side dishes or as part of a dressing for fruit salad, since its subtle flavour does not compromise (and in fact, enhances) the flavour of the fruit and does not leave a salty aftertaste.

Red Wine Vinegar

Red wine vinegar, as a result of its acidity, makes a good addition to many recipes, including making salad dressings and marinades for fish, meat, and vegetables. The smooth taste excites most taste buds. While you would not use this vinegar for cleaning your home more than the others (there are better options), it does have quite a few health benefits, including managing your appetite, controlling diabetes, and providing you with more antioxidants.

5 Popular Summer Fruits

When you think of summer, which fruits pop into your mind? While there are many fruits in season during the summer months, we are certain there are some people more closely associate with the sunny weather. Here are just five of the most popular summer fruits and ideas on ways in which you can enjoy them with family and friends.

Strawberries

Strawberries are a fantastic addition to any fruit salad. They are also amazing when incorporated into lemonade, a refreshing summer beverage, or even when you cover them in chocolate for an indulgent treat. If you usually eat oatmeal or toast in the morning, why not top it with some strawberries to add natural sweetness to your breakfast?

Raspberries

Like strawberries, raspberries are one of the most versatile berries in the summer months. You can mix them in smoothies, use them to top oatmeal and toast, and even eat them by themselves! They are also delicious as part of a fruit salad and downright delicious when mixed into a lemonade.

Watermelon

Watermelons are perhaps the perfect fruit for the summer months. They are sweet, juicy, and incredibly hydrating—a perfect snack for kids who have been playing outside all day, or as a treat after a long day of work outdoors for the adults. You can, of course, incorporate watermelon into other dishes and drinks, they do make a nice addition to some blends of fruit salads, but often they are best enjoyed by themselves.

Peaches

Of course, you can use peaches in the same ways you use most fruits: in a salad, incorporated into lemonade, and on their own. Other more inventive uses include peach iced tea, in ice cream, and even grilled peaches! Indulge in this juicy fruit during the summer months. It will be refreshing, we promise.

Pineapples

Do you hear the tropics calling? For many, the summer is associated with a tropical environment, even if they are not in a tropical country at the time. This is why a tropical fruit like pineapple is closely connected to summer. Pineapples, like the other summer fruits on this list, are great in a fruit salad. Many also believe pineapples are like candy and will eat them alone. They also make quite the delicious juice, which is a perfect way to reap the health benefits they provide for those who dislike the texture of this unique fruit.