Happy International Bacon Day!!! – Virgin Chocolate Chunk Brownies With Maple & Benton Bacon

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Virgin Chocolate Chunk Brownies With Maple & Benton Bacon

Ingredients:

Serves: 9-12

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Directions:

  1. Preparation
  2. Preheat the oven to 350F Line an 8-inch (20cm) square baking pan with foil and spray foil with cooking spray.
  3. Melt the chocolate in the microwave or in a bowl set over a pan of barely simmering water. Whisk in the COR olive oil and set aside to cool slightly.
  4. Beat the eggs and sugar in a mixing bowl using high speed of an electric mixer for 5 minutes. Beat in the syrup and salt, then fold in the cooled chocolate mixture. Fold in the BRM flour, then gently stir in the bacon. Pour into the prepared pan.

        5. 
Bake for 20-25 minutes. Mine became aromatic at 20 minutes and at 25 minutes, they had a shiny, dry, slightly crackly top. Let cool completely. Cut into squares.

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You got the Wrong Number – DO NOT answer if this number is calling you

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WASHINGTON – If you get a call from the number (202) 609-7070, the Internal Revenue Service is warning you not to answer the phone.

IRS officials said those who call from this number are impersonating the IRS agents and demand payment for fake tax liens.

Authorities said the phony agent, who usually has a heavy accent, will call or leave a voice mail saying you owe money to the IRS and if it isn’t paid immediately you will be arrested.

The IRS says they have received 90,000 complaints to date about the scam and about 1,000 people have lost an estimated $5 million from the fraud.

The IRS said it will never:

  • Never ask for credit card, debit card or prepaid card information over the telephone
  • Never insist that taxpayers use a specific payment method to pay tax obligations
  • Never request immediate payment over the telephone and will not take enforcement action immediately following a phone conversation. Taxpayers usually receive prior notification of IRS enforcement action involving IRS tax liens or levies

If you get a call you believe to be a part of this scam, the IRS urges you call 1-800-366-4484 to report the incident.

For more information on phone scams and how to avoid being defrauded, visit irs.gov.

Credit: Fox13Now

 

Happy National Waffle Day!!! – August 24th (True Belgian Waffles)

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True Belgian Waffles Recipe

TOTAL TIME: Prep/Total Time: 20 min.

MAKES: 5 servings

Ingredients

2 cups all-purpose flour

3/4 cup sugar

3-1/2 teaspoons baking powder

2 Eggland’s Best Eggs, separated

1-1/2 cups milk

1 cup butter, melted

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Sliced fresh strawberries or syrup

Directions

  1. In a bowl, combine flour, sugar and baking powder. In another bowl, lightly beat egg yolks. Add milk, butter and vanilla; mix well. Stir into dry ingredients just until combined. Beat egg whites until stiff peaks form; fold into batter.
  2. Bake in a preheated waffle iron according to manufacturer’s directions until golden brown. Serve with strawberries or syrup. Yield: 10 waffles (about 4-1/2 inches).

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Happy National Peach Pie Day!!! August 24th (Georgia Peach Pie)

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Georgia Peach Pie

CRUST

  • 2 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 stick (4 ounces) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon (4 ounces) cold solid vegetable shortening
  • 1/2 cup ice water

FILLING

  1. 8 large, ripe but firm peaches (3 1/2 pounds)
  2. 3/4 cup sugar
  3. 1 1/2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  4. 1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  5. 1 1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter, thinly sliced
  6. Egg wash made with 1 egg yolk mixed with 2 tablespoons water
  7. Bourbon Whipped Cream, for serving

Directions:

  • In a food processor, pulse the flour with the sugar and salt until combined. Add the butter and shortening and pulse until the mixture resembles coarse meal. Transfer the mixture to a large bowl and sprinkle the ice water on top. Stir with a fork until a crumbly dough forms. Turn the dough out onto a work surface and knead 2 or 3 times, just until the dough comes together. Cut the dough in half and form into 2 disks; wrap in plastic and refrigerate until firm, at least 30 minutes or overnight.
  • On a lightly floured surface, roll out each disk of dough to a 12-inch round. Ease one of the rounds into a 9-inch glass pie plate and transfer the other round to a baking sheet. Refrigerate the dough.
  • Preheat the oven to 400°. Bring a large saucepan of water to a boil and fill a large bowl with ice water. Using a sharp knife, mark a shallow X in the bottom of each peach. Blanch the peaches in the boiling water for about 1 minute, until the skins begin to loosen. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the peaches to the ice water to cool. Drain and peel the peaches and cut them into 3/4-inch wedges. Transfer the peaches to a large bowl. Add the sugar, lemon juice and flour, toss well and let stand for 5 minutes.
  • Pour the peaches and their juices into the chilled pie shell and scatter the butter slices on top. Brush the edge of the pie shell with the egg wash and lay the round of dough from the baking sheet on top. Press the edges of the pie shell together to seal and trim the overhang to a 1/2 inch. Fold the edge of the pie dough under itself and crimp decoratively. Brush the remaining egg wash on the top crust and cut a few slits for venting steam.
  • Transfer the pie to the oven and place a baking sheet in the bottom to catch any drips. Bake for 30 minutes. Reduce the oven temperature to 375°, cover the edge of the pie with foil and bake for about 40 minutes longer, until the filling is bubbling and the crust is deeply golden on the top and bottom. Transfer the pie to a rack to cool completely. Serve with Bourbon Whipped Cream.

MAKE AHEAD The dough can be refrigerated for up to 2 days or frozen for up to 1 month. The peach pie can be stored overnight at room temperature. NOTES As an alternative to the Bourbon Whipped Cream, serve the pie with vanilla ice cream.

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Happy National Rum Day!!! – August 16 (Cable Car Cocktail)

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Cable Car Cocktail

The Cable Car is an excellent rum drink which was created by Tony Abou-Ganim, the “Modern Mixologist.” It involves Captain Morgan spiced rum and orange curacao, of which the original recipe calls for Marie Bizard.

Also, in Abou-Ganim’s recipe is a fresh lemon sour which is made by mixing 1 part simple syrup with 2 parts fresh lemon juice. A prepared sour mix will work, but his suggestion is strongly preferred.

The name Cable Car was inspired by the tracks near the Starlight Room in San Fransisco where he first created with cocktail.

Prep Time: 3 minutes

Total Time: 3 minutes

Yield: 1 Cocktail

Ingredients:

Preparation:

  1. Rim a chilled cocktail glass with sugar.
  2. Pour the ingredients into a cocktail shaker filled with ice.
  3. Shake well.
  4. Strain into the prepared glass.
  5. Garnish with an orange peel spiral.

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Happy National S’mores Day – August 10 “You’re Killing me Smalls”

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“Graham crackers with melted marshmallows and chocolate. Prepared over an open flame, this camping favorite is great for the holidays, too. Not recommended for the stove top.”

Ingredients

Original recipe makes 1 serving

  • 
1 large marshmallow
  • 
1 graham cracker
  • 
1 (1.5 ounce) bar chocolate candy bar

Indoor-SMores

Directions

  1. Heat the marshmallow over an open flame until it begins to brown and melt.
  2. Break the graham cracker in half. Sandwich the chocolate between the cracker and the hot marshmallow. Allow the marshmallow to cool a moment before eating.

The Sandlot

Happy National Root Beer Float Day – August 6th

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Happy National Root Beer Float Day

Ingredients

1 pint vanilla bean ice cream
2 quarts root beer

Directions

Hang a large, well packed scoop of vanilla ice cream on the edge of a fountain glass or other tall drinking glass. Fill the glass 3/4 full with root beer. Set the fountain glass on a salad plate, underlining the glass for overflow. Serve floats with straws and parfait spoons. When you are ready to enjoy the floats, knock the ice cream into the root beer and watch it fizz up as the ice cream floats. Yummy! This is the simplest and my most favorite fountain drink!

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Rainy Day Meals – Paccheri and Cheese with Peas and Mint

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Paccheri and Cheese with Peas and Mint

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter plus more for pan
  • 1/3 cup plus 1 1/2 cups grated Parmesan, divided (about 3 1/2 ounces total)
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 4 cups whole milk
  • 1 cup shredded Fontina cheese
  • 1 large egg
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 pound paccheri rigati or rigatoni
  • 1 cup shelled fresh or frozen peas
  • 2 cups coarsely chopped arugula
  • 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons coarsely chopped flat-leaf parsley
  • 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh mint
  • 1 cup ricotta (about 9 ounces)
  • 1/2 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest

Summer Food: New Summer Classics

Directions

Butter pan. Dust pan all over with 1/3 cup Parmesan. Melt 1/4 cup butter in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add flour; whisk for 2 minutes. Gradually whisk in milk. Bring to a simmer, whisking often. Reduce heat to medium. Cook, whisking frequently, until sauce is thickened, about 20 minutes. Remove from heat. Whisk in Fontina and 1 cup Parmesan. Add egg; whisk to blend. Season with salt and pepper. Cover sauce and keep warm.

Arrange a rack in upper third of oven; preheat to 375°F. Cook pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water, stirring occasionally, until almost al dente (pasta will continue to cook while baking). Using a large slotted spoon, transfer pasta to a large bowl. Add peas to pasta water; cook until just tender, about 1 minute. Drain peas; add to bowl with pasta. Stir in cheese sauce. Add arugula, 1 cup parsley, and 1/2 cup mint to pasta mixture; mix to evenly incorporate.

Transfer half of pasta mixture to prepared pan. Mix ricotta and lemon zest in a small bowl; dot half of ricotta mixture over pasta. Spoon remaining pasta mixture into pan and dot with remaining ricotta mixture. Sprinkle with 1/4 cup Parmesan.

Bake pasta for 30 minutes. Sprinkle with remaining 1/4 cup Parmesan. Bake pasta until top is golden brown, about 10 minutes longer. Let rest for 30 minutes; remove pan sides. Sprinkle with 2 tablespoons parsley and 2 tablespoons mint and cut into wedges.

Do I make you Horny Baby? 5 Cocktails that will get you in the Mood

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5 – Aphrodisiac Cocktails

1. Matahari

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Key aphrodisiac ingredient: Pomegranate 

1 1/4 ounces Pierre Ferrand Amber Cognac 

1 oz. Chai-infused Vermouth (see #5 on this list) 

3/4 oz. freshly squeezed lemon juice 

1/2 oz. simple syrup 

3/4 ounce POM Wonderful juice 

3 dried organic rose buds 

Put all ingredients into a mixing glass. Add large, cold ice and shake vigorously. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass and garnish with rose buds.

2. Secret Crush

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Key aphrodisiac ingredient: Pearl Dust (which doesn’t technically have proven aphrodisiac properties, but doesn’t a cocktail that sparkles inherently ooze romance?) 

According to Zaric, “This cocktail is very sexy and inviting and makes a superb aperitif as well as great choice for pairing with antipasti, mezes, tapas or seafood appetizers.” 

5 oz. Llopart Cava Leopardi Brut Rose 

3/4 oz. Campari 

1 brown sugar cube 

4 to 5 dashes Angostura bitters 

1 lemon twist, for garnish 

A dusting of edible pearl dust (available in baking supply stores or online) 

Note: use a very small amount; coat a wet tip of a knife with dust and wash it in the glass. 

Pour half the amount of the sparking wine into the champagne flute. Place the sugar cute on a bar spoon. Saturate it with Angostura Bitters. Carefully place the bitters saturated sugar cube into the flute. Let rest for a moment. Pour the rest of the sparkling wine. Add Campari. Add pearl dust. Twist the lemon over the drink and discard.

3. Fraise Sauvage

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Key Aphrodisiac Ingredient: Strawberries 

1 1/4 oz. Tanqueray Gin 

1/2 oz. freshly squeezed lemon juice 

1/4 oz. simple syrup 

3/4 oz. Wild Strawberry Puree (recipe below) 

2 oz. Prossecco 

1 half strawberry, for garnish 

Pour all ingredients except Pressecco into a mixing glass. Add large, cold ice, cover and shake vigorously for 7 – 8 seconds. Pour Prossecco in to a chilled cocktail-martini glass and pour the cocktail over it. Garnish with half a strawberry. 

Wild Strawberry Cordial 

Yields: 1 liter 

2 kilograms (4.4 pounds) frozen wild strawberries or small fresh strawberries 

1 cup sugar 

1 cup water 

1/2 lemon, zested 

1 Tahitian vanilla bean, scored 

Place all ingredients into a sauce pan. Bring to a boil while stirring until all the strawberries break down. Remove from heat and allow cooling. Remove lemon zest and vanilla bean, then pour into a store and pour container. Keep refrigerated until necessary. Fill a labeled squeeze bottle for easiest means of use.

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4. Malena

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Key Aphrodisiac Ingredient: Cinnamon 

Zaric notes that this cocktail has a high complexity, silky texture and long bitter finish, perfect for that special somebody who doesn’t particularly desire a sweeter drink. 

1 oz. Rittenhouse Straight Rye Whsikey 100 proof 

1 oz. Campari 

3/4 oz. ruby Port 

6 grapes 

5 drops of orange blossom water 

3 dashes of Reagan’s Orange Bitters 

ground cinnamon 

orange half wheel for garnish 

Stir all ingredients in a mixing glass briefly and pour over ice in rocks glass. Garnish with an orange half wheel and ground cinnamon.

5. Chai-Infused Sweet Vermouth

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Key aphrodisiac ingredients: Ginger & Cinnamon 

“The chai-infused vermouth is the second of our two original vermouth infusions,” Zaric and co-author/owner Jason Kosmas write. “When trying to create our own vermouths from scratch, we noted that sweet vermouths tended to be more spice driven as where dry vermouth relies on herbs. We decided to accentuate some of these flavors while adding a pumping up a few for our own the sweet vermouth infusion. Chai is a very recognized flavor profile consisting of cardamom, clove, cinnamon, black tea and ginger. The resulting flavor is so sexy that you will feel like you have been kissed by a beautiful belly dancer. This intoxicating concoction is the defining ingredient in our Matahari cocktail.” 

Yields: 2 liters 

8 green cardamom pods 

8 cloves 

1 cinnamon stick 

1 inch-piece of ginger, coarsely chopped 

2 tablespoon chai or black tea 

2 liters of Cinzano sweet vermouth 

Place cardamom, cloves, cinnamon and ginger into a small sauce pan and heat for two minutes. Add tea and 2 cups of the vermouth. Bring to a low boil for 2 minutes. Remove from heat and allow it to cool completely. Add remaining vermouth and strain mixture through a cheese cloth. Bottle and store at room temperature.

Credit: Your Tango

Lessons about Eating we Can Learn From The French

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The French diet is full of flavor and high in satisfaction. They don’t believe in low-fat, low-carb, low-taste, or low-calorie, but they do believe in enjoying their food, taking the time to eat at the table, knowing when to stop eating and educating their children about food. These are a just a few of the many lessons the French can teach us about a culture that truly thrives on savoring the flavor at mealtime.

1. The French eat family meals together.

No distractions. It’s a real bonding time where they get to talk discuss life. The French train their kids from the age of three they spend time eating at the table at lunch every day in school. They’re not inherently better behaved, but they’ve practiced for years. By the time you see an eight-year-old French kid in a restaurant they have sat at a table thousands of times. It’s just practice.

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2. The French sit down and enjoy their meals.

Eating great food — no matter how simple or how elaborate — is one of life’s great pleasures. It’s rare to see people eating while walking or shopping in France. There are no cup holders on caddies, or even in most cars. You eat at the table, not in front of the TV or computer screen, then you leave the table and do something else. When eating at restaurants, the French are never asked by their servers “are you done with that?” because the meal is a pleasure, not a task.

3. They French don’t snack!

They eat, but not all day long. It’s OK to feel hungry between meals. The French don’t graze after dinner. That’s why when mealtimes roll around, they eat with real pleasure because they’re hungry. When the kitchen closes, it’s CLOSED and they have set mealtimes without cheating on the side. Portions are generous without going overboard. Although the French take in a lot of daily calories compared to most other countries (but nothing compared to yearly U.S. calorie intake), they don’t gain weight because of how they schedule their meals.

4. The French never say diet.

The French don’t get involved in the carbs versus protein debate, nor do they label food groups “bad.” They emphasize on eating a wide variety of foods without overdoing any one specific food group. Yo-yo dieting and extreme fluctuations in weight we see in America are completely absent in France. They are masters at stabilizing their metabolism. You’ll never see a French person on a restricted calorie diet to lose weight…it just doesn’t happen.

5. The French know their limit, then stop eating.

In France, you won’t find many all-you-can-eat feasts, such as buffets, tailgate parties and unlimited pasta and dessert bars, where it’s easy for the calories to add up quickly. The French realize that they will get to eat again in a few hours. They usually stop when they’re 80% full and don’t continue to gorge when they’re full if and when they ever get there.

6. Parents are in charge of food education, not schools!

This doesn’t just mean teaching your children to eat right. It means teaching them to appreciate and love food — all kinds of food. The French believe that teaching children to eat is just as important as, and just as time consuming as, teaching them to read. They have a long-term view. Kids eat what adults eat. No short-order cooking. There’s no mac & cheese special just for the boy. They also don’t get frustrated when there are bumps in the road. Some kids take longer to read than others, but they don’t give up and say “This kid is a picky eater, she just doesn’t like broccoli.” You don’t treat fear of foods as a personality trait, you treat it as a phase.

7. The French eat lighter at night.

Lunchtime is the main event. Dinner is usually light: soups, salads, an omelet, a simple pasta dish. Dessert might be a yogurt or fruit. And you sleep so much better .

8. The French don’t eat emotionally and restrict portion size.

You’re not going to see a many French women on the couch crying with a bag of potato chips. They don’t emotionally attach themselves to food. The French diet is full of flavor and high in satisfaction. The women eat bread, chocolate, even rich sauces made from real butter and cream, yet they do not get fat. Pourquoi? Moderation. It’s all about portion control. They eat small portions of high-quality foods less often. Portion sizes in America at least 40% or more larger than in France.

9. Eat your veggies.

You don’t have to LIKE it, but you do have to TASTE it. 
Even children don’t like a specific food, the French are more neutral and will just shrug and say, “Oh well, you just haven’t tried it enough times.” However, they will still make them taste it. They learn to taste their food and guess the ingredients. They love to talk about their food. Discussing how something tastes, its ingredients and how it was made heightens awareness; children love to join the conversation. They learn about real food and where it comes from. Children get involved in the cooking and preparing process.

10. The French prefer water.


Generally speaking, the French do not drink their calories. At mealtimes, water (whether still or sparkling) is the drink of choice. Adults might opt for a glass or two of wine, but the glasses aren’t the size of fishbowls.

11. The French eat slowly. 


Study after study shows that when you slow down and chew your food thoughtfully you eat less. But it also gives you the chance to be social and chat more and the French have mastered this aspect within their dining experience. It takes an average of 15 minutes for your brain to get the message that your stomach is full, which means that eating slowly makes it more likely you’ll stop at a point where you’re “satisfied” as opposed to “stuffed.”

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12. The French eat mostly real food.

Quality not quantity. Treats are OK only for special occasions.

By “real food” meaning whole foods and not processed foods. Not stuff from a box, can or a fast food joint. Of course the French will take pleasure in the occasional treat, but they usually do so in the company of another, on a special occasion, or if alone, with a good book or beautiful music. Again, it’s all about the experience.

Credits: preventdisease.com
 
 bonappetit.com