The Proper way to Eat Oysters

Posted by Mozelle | Dining and Restaurants | Sunday 8 May 2016 7:01 pm

There is something sexy about eating oysters. This edible mollusc has been consumed by kings, queens, emperors and gods for hundreds of years.
However, in our modern day, maybe it is just the satisfaction of seeing fellow diners squirm while you gulp them down, or the feeling of playing Russian roulette with the rare chance that you may eat a “bad” oyster.

The traditional way to eat oysters is when they are served on a bed of crushed ice, garnished with a side order of shallot vinegar, ground pepper, lemon wedges and Tabasco sauce.

Using a fork, loosen the flesh of the oyster from the shell then throw it back.
Any following oysters can be loosed using the shell from your first oyster. This is nice way to achieve the natural, finger food feel which our ancestors probably used in times gone by.

If you are an oyster virgin and are not too enthusiastic about swallowing a fleshy, raw shellfish which has dredged the bottom of sea, then here are a few options which you might find easier to swallow. An oyster shot. A raw oyster in a shot glass, topped up with a shot of Bloody Mary – vodka, tomato juice, pepper, salt, Worcestershire sauce and lemon juice.

If you are still not convinced about eating your oysters raw, then why not try them grilled. A nice combination is oysters with spinach and Hollandaise sauce. Again, served with lots of ground pepper and a wedge of lemon.
A very popular dish is “angels on horseback”. The oysters are wrapped in strips of bacon and grilled. They can be served as a canape with a cocktail stick or on toast. Another creative combination is serving them on a bed of steamed samphire grass – a delicate, aromatic seaweed.

A word of warning. Do not consume gin or red wine when eating oysters. There are natural toxins and bacteria in an oyster, and when mixed with the chemicals in gin or red wine, have the potential to make you very ill. A good seafood restaurant will probably show a disclaimer on their menu to highlight this, or their staff will be trained to inform customers when they order.
You should not consume oysters if you are pregnant, suffer from liver disease or have a low immune system. Again this is due to the high levels of bacteria present within the oyster.

Never, ever, eat an oyster which is not fully opened. Always go to a well-reputed seafood restaurant if you want the reassurance that your oysters are fresh from a quality supplier. The chef will also have carried out stringent procedures with regard to their storage, preparation and cooking standards.

Do not let what I have said deter you from eating oysters. They are renowned for being exceptionally nutritious and a very powerful aphrodisiac.
Eat an oyster and experience the pleasure of feeling you are eating straight from the sea. So next time you are dining out – give it a try. The world is your oyster.

Tips for Buying an Electric Pan

Posted by Marita | Cooking | Thursday 5 May 2016 7:01 am

An electric pan is convenient, even if you have a stove. It provides an extra cooking surface for large parties, allows people to cook outdoors at their homes or at cooking sites and can be a convenient way to cook for people who do not have access to a stove.

There are many different electric pans available, and you should consider the following options before deciding on the right electric pan for you.

Right size

First you want to make sure to find the right size cooking surface for you. Just like regular pans, electric pans come in many different sizes. Think about what you might be cooking on it, and how much space you’ll need. You also need to think about where you will store it and make sure that the size can accommodate that.

Cooking surface

You should also consider the cooking surface of the different electric pans. Two major types are nonstick and ones without a nonstick surface. Some prefer the nonstick surface since they can be much easier to clean and may not require as much oil. Other people prefer to not have that coating. There are some concerns with the safety of the coating, so do research if that is a concern for you. Also, pans with the nonstick coating surface may be more expensive.

Safety features

You also want to get an electric pan that will protect you from accidentally burning yourself. Some of the pans come with insulated handles so that you can touch the sides without burning your hands. Others do not offer this feature. You may pay extra for this, but if it will save you from being burned it may be worthwhile. You can also commit to using a hot glove and not have to worry about it.

Quality and ratings

Of course you want to find an electric pan that works well. The pans range in how evenly they cook, how durable they are and how long they last. One good way to get an idea of quality is to read the different ratings and reviews by others who have already purchased the electric pan. If you go to a website like Amazon where they sell such pans, then you can look up the ratings and reviews of the individual products. Look for one that is highly rated.

Price

You also need to get something that is within your budget. Generally electric pans are not very expensive and you can often find one for less than $50. Still they can range based on features, brand and other characteristics. Look at prices versus features to determine which is the best for you.

Cleaning

There are many other features that you might look for in an electric pan. For instance, some of them are dishwasher safe if you take away the heating element. You might be able to find one that has an automatic shut off or power light indicator. Read the specifications to find out about the different features.

There are many different electric pans. Compare and contrast until you find the perfect electric pan for you.

The Origins of Cotton Candy

Posted by Mozelle | Cuisine and Food | Monday 2 May 2016 3:01 am

Fairs have become synonymous with the melt in your mouth sugary flavors of cotton candy. Memories of childhood for many people include the sticky, sugary sensation of eating cotton candy. More than 100 years ago, cotton candy did not even exist. However, the origins of cotton candy directly correlate to the wide use of electricity and inventive men who wanted to create new confectionary treats. One gathering in particular immortalized cotton candy as a carnival fixture.

Four men were responsible for invention of cotton candy, Thomas Patton, Joseph Lascaux, John C. Wharton, and William Morrison. In 1897, Morrison and Wharton, two candy makers from Nashville, Tennessee, created an electric candy-making machine. Their inventions worked by using centrifugal force to spin sugar, then melting it through small holes. Morrison and Wharton got a patent for their candy-making machine in 1899.

In 1904, the two cotton candy inventors demonstrated their technique to the world at the St. Louis
World’s Fair. People attending the fair were intrigued by this new invention. Morrison and Wharton sold approximately 68,000 boxes of cotton candy at the fair for a mere 25 cents a box. At the end of the World’s Fair, they earned $17,163.75 from the event. That estimates to approximately half a million according to today’s standards; therefore, their invention, which they called “Fairy Floss,” was an outstanding success.

Around the same time, Patton began work on his version of the cotton candy machine. At the turn of the century, he patented a gas-powered devise that contained rotating plates that caramelized sugar while spinning. The machine worked by boiling the sugar as it was rotating. He used a fork to thread the cotton candy. Instead of serving his cotton candy in a box, he served his on a cone.

In 1921, New Orleans dentist Lascaux worked on and patented a machine that created cotton candy. Like Morrison and Wharton, his machine utilized electricity and centrifugal force to make cotton candy. To add to the irony of a dentist making a sugary treat, Lascaux served his confection to his dental patients. What better way to make sure he continued having customers at his day job. He, however, didn’t call his creation fairy floss. He is credited with calling the sweet treat cotton candy.

In 1949, cotton candy history transformed when Gold Medal Products introduced a device that had a spring base. This machine was an improvement on previous cotton candy devices. This new machine made the process easier and a staple of county fairs, circuses and school carnivals and fundraiser events.

Now, people can enjoy cotton candy in different flavors such as bubble gum, grape and strawberry. The colors pink and blue are the two most popular types purchased at events. Interestingly, although cotton candy is made of pure sugar, it contains less sugar than a 20 oz. soft drink.

Sources:

http://www.cottoncandy.net/inv ention.html

http://www.cottoncandyexpress.com/history.html

http://www.contentcaboodle.com /recreation-and-sports/the-lon g-and-illustrious-history-of-c otton-candy.html