Toaster ovens are a great way to go green in the kitchen. Not only are they more energy efficient than bigger standard ovens, but they also have the added benefit of saving you time and money. These smaller countertop ovens take less time to preheat, and if you get one with a convection feature for cooking, then you will also be able to use lower temperatures to deliver awesome tasting meals. You can finally stop wasting energy and use your full sized oven to store pots and pans, which is a nice added bonus. If you do not own one of these yet, then they are worth looking into.
Of course they can do toast, but they are also capable of so much more. These are fully functional cooking appliances that can handle just about any type of recipe that you can throw at them. Roasting, baking, broiling, reheating, defrosting, and browning are just some of the functions that are built into these countertop machines. You can find reviews of the top rated toaster ovens at Great Plains Examiner to see which oven would be best for your cooking needs as well as your budget.
Toaster Oven Recipes
But what exactly can you do with a toaster oven? For starters, you can prepare favourite foods like pizza, apple pies, roasted asparagus, lasagna, chicken tenders and bacon. Below are just a few simple recipes you can prepare with a toaster oven in your own home. Not only are they convenient, but they are huge time savers as well. Eating healthy does not have to be hard work.
Salsa Tuna Melt
The salsa tuna melt contains protein, carbohydrates and fats which are beneficial to the growth and development of the body.
- A can of white tuna in water
- 2 tablespoons of chopped cilantro or thinly sliced green onion
- 2 tablespoons of salsa
- 1 tablespoon of light mayonnaise
- 1 English muffin, split and lightly toasted
- 2 slices of reduced fat cheese
Start by combining the tuna, cilantro, salsa and mayonnaise in a clean bowl of medium size. Proceed by splitting the English muffin in two halves and then place them on a small baking sheet.
Top the English muffin with the tuna mixture and cheese. Start the toaster oven and pre heat it to 350 degrees. Place the mixture of English muffin, tuna and cilantro in the toaster oven and bake it until the cheese melts. This should take between two to three minutes.
The preparation time for the meal is 10 minutes while the overall cooking time is 3 minutes. The meal is for one serving only and contains 430 calories.
Mini Apple Pie
Mini apple pies are healthier and contribute nutrients and minerals beneficial to the body.
- One pack of Tortilla
- Half an apple
- 1 tablespoon of honey
- 1 tablespoon of cinnamon
Start by slicing the apple and place the slices on a tortilla. Proceed by drizzling the apples with honey and finally sprinkle the cinnamon on the mixture. You need to fold the corners of the tortilla so as to create a small apple pie pouch. The best way to ensure that the pouch stays intact is to fasten the corners with clean toothpicks.
Switch the toaster oven on, place the mini apple pie in the oven tray and proceed to bake it until the apples are soft. This could take a period of around 5 minutes especially if you use the toast feature found on your oven. Take the mini apple pie from the oven and serve.
The mini apple will contain 150 calories depending with the kind of tortilla you have used and 1.5 grams of fat.
Asparagus is extremely nutritious and contains Vitamin B6, calcium, magnesium, zinc, protein, beta-carotene, Vitamin C, Vitamin K and dietary fiber.
- One bunch of asparagus
- 4 tablespoons of olive oil
- Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
Start by pre heating your toaster oven to 425 degrees. Proceed by washing your asparagus thoroughly, stack them together and finally cut off the tough bottom part. You need to spread the asparagus in a single layer on top of a rimmed baking sheet, pat it as dry as you can as you don’t want the water to steam during the roasting of the asparagus in the toaster oven
Drizzle olive oil all over the asparagus, then sprinkle the freshly ground pepper and the salt too. Place the asparagus in the toaster oven and proceed to roast it for 5 minutes. You need to be careful as the oven will be hot therefore cooking the outer part of the asparagus quickly without the inside getting done. Serve once well done.
Endless Possibilities In The Kitchen
Just about any recipe that can be prepared in a full sized conventional oven can also be done in a countertop toaster oven. Obviously, a super huge turkey is probably going to be the exception, but you might be surprised with just how much cooking for your family can be accomplished in one of these. So make room on your counter and go out and get one of these ovens for your kitchen, your family and the planet will thank you.
You may think that wielding a knife around while you are preparing your favorite recipe makes you worthy of that kung-fu movie your thought was so cool as a kid, but you can end up doing more damage than you intend, and mostly to yourself. Cooking may not seem like the most manly activity, but it can be with the right tools. Using a food processor can be just as rewarding than trying to relive that Bruce Lee scene. A food processor can end up saving you from a lot of pain from the different cooking chores you may encounter. Your knuckles may be scraped up from dragging them on the ground, but there is no need to do further damage by scraping them on a shredder trying to grate cheese. We are here to save you from yourself and make it crystal clear why you should consider getting one of these small kitchen appliances for your countertop today.
You Are Not An Iron Chef
While we all may think that using a knife is pretty manly, chance are you are not Bobby Flay. If you cook a lot and still have all ten of your fingers then consider yourself lucky. Accidents happen to the best of us, but why take unwanted risks just for the perfect pot pie. God gave us ten fingers for a reason, but that reason was not so that we can afford to lose one trying to dice a green pepper. A food processor, for the most part, can help you keep all of your digits and get the perfect chop on those potato sticks. Cooking is not a kung-fu movie, put down the knife.
Real Cavemen Don’t Cry
It happens to the best of us. We try every way to avoid getting our face over the board while trying to chop onions, but sooner or later you will be sobbing like my Grandmother the first time she saw Titanic. Don’t be like my Grandma. Food processors can make quick work of any type of onion without making you shed a tear. That alone should make you start searching and find one that matches your popcorn machine and mini keg beer dispenser. Finding the best food processor for your own kitchen will help you escape the wrath of the onion.
More Time For Beer
Chopping, slicing, dicing, mincing, all that kind of work takes time. I can think of many things I would rather be doing than those chores. Not only does it take time to do all of those things with a knife, it also takes concentration. That is where I draw the line. Sweat I can handle, making me think before I eat, that’s a deal breaker. And if you are cooking bigger meals for more than just yourself all those jobs can really add up. I would rather drink a beer or watch the game, or tie my shoe, or anything else. Seriously, food processors take like a minute. Pop it in, hit a button, empty it out. Most of them are dishwasher safe too, so clean up does not waste time either. Win-Win-Drink.
More Power Tools
Using one of these appliances is also a lot of fun and can be a great release. I hate onions, but I can pulverize them if I want with a food processor. With the push of a button, I can destroy, I mean prepare, any vegetable I desire with a powerful motor and sharp blade. It is like having another power tool in your kitchen. I shredded 2lbs of cheese one night just for the hell of it, and I didn’t regret it. You never know when you might have a shredded cheese emergency.
We Like To Collect
Be a true hunter gatherer. Worst case scenario is that you never use it and it just sits in the cabinet with the other small appliances that you never use. At least your collection will grow. If you are going to have one, then go big or go home. Save the box however, because it will have more value when you have that garage sale that you have been meaning to throw. Chances are you will get some use out of it, but it is always prudent to have a backup plan.
As you can see, there are several legitimate reasons why you should buy a food processor and there are plenty of quality options to choose from. There is really no good reason any self respecting caveman should not arm himself with another kitchen toy that is both useful while at the same time being capable of doing serious damage to food.
Celery is a crunchy, low-cal vegetable known for its numerous health promoting benefits. Unlike many vegetables, nothing goes to waste with this plant. The crisp stalks, the feathery leaves, the seeds, and the bulbous roots (celeriac) are all edible. You can either eat it raw, juice it or use the strongly flavored leaves as flavoring in your stews and soups. The seeds are available as nutritional supplements in capsule form.
Though 95% of celery is water, the remaining 5% is packed with many vital nutrients. It is a good source of dietary fiber and also rich in potassium and sodium. The vegetable is an excellent source of Vitamins A, K, C, and B6, and is abundant in pantothenic acid, folate, magnesium, and phosphorous. Its leaves are a bounty of flavonoid antioxidants such as zeaxanthin, lutein, and beta-carotene.
Celery has minute quantities of proteins and lipids. It has 0.17 grams of fat and 0.69 grams of protein per 100 grams. It also got less than 3g of carbohydrates per 100 grams. With 16 Kcal per 100 grams, celery is undoubtedly one of the vegetables with least calories.Celery is alkaline and thus effective in offsetting the acidic effects of eating too much meat.
Potential Health Benefits
This perennial, stalk-stemmed, white-flowered plant is accoladed for the many medicinal properties. From the times of Hippocrates, scientists are still adding the list of celery’s health benefits. Some of the health benefits include:
1. Weight Management
As a low-calorie food, celery is a popular choice for dieters. It’s low fat, low carb, and low calorie; which is a perfect combination for dieters. Consumption of celery (even in large quantities) will not significantly increase your daily calorie intake. You can consume as much celery as you want and add no weight.
It has high fiber content which will leave you full for long, and make you eat less food. Studies in animals have proved the effectiveness of this vegetable in reducing not only the bad cholesterol but the total cholesterol. This is made possible by Phthalides, which increase bile secretion and in turn lowers the total cholesterol.
2. Prevents Cancer
Celery has phytochemical compounds known as coumarins, which help to prevent cancer. These compounds are also thought to enhance white blood cells activity. The vegetable is also loaded with luteolin and apigenin flavonoids that aid effectiveness of chemo drugs and significantly contributes to the destruction of pancreas cancer cells.
3. Calms the Nerves
Hippocrates (the father of medicine) described celery as a potent nerve calmer. A glass of celery juice is all that you need to calm your nerves almost immediately. This can be a useful aid when you are tensed up such as the moment before giving a speech, or when attending an important business meeting. Studies have shown that calmed central nervous system from celery’s plant hormones help to aid weight loss.
4. Immune System
The high Vitamin C content in celery assists in boosting your immune system and fight against the free radicals (which contribute to a host of ailments).
5. Lowers the Blood Pressure
Celery is good for your heart. Phthalides in celery help to lower your blood pressure by relaxing the muscles around your arteries, hence allowing the blood vessels to dilate. Celery also has potassium, which is a well-known blood regulator.
6. Aids in Urine Secretion
The proper balance of sodium and potassium in celery has diuretic effects. It assists the body in flushing out excess fluids and helps to treat bladder infections as well as gallstones problems. The vegetable is also superb in electrolyte replacement.
7. Facilitates Digestive Transit
The high fiber content is very useful. Grate celery finely into your preparations to improve your intestinal transit, strengthen your stomach, and prevent constipation.
8. Strengthens the Brain
The vegetable is rich in nitrates, which turn to nitrites by bacteria. Numerous studies have established that these nitrites are favorable in vasodilatation and blood thinning, especially in some regions of the brain.
9. Stimulates Sexual Desire
For many years, this vegetable has been used as a natural aphrodisiac. Modern science has established that celery stalks help to increase the production of male sex hormone testosterone, and promotes the release of steroid hormone androsterone, which contributes to greater desire.
Celery helps to reduce swelling in and around the joints and therefore, very helpful for people suffering from arthritis, gout, and rheumatism. Studies have shown that luteolin compound in celery helps to reduce brain inflammation.
Getting Celery Into Your Diet
While most folks associate this vegetable with something boring that you snack on when you are trying to lose weight, celery is a rather versatile food. You can try any of these celery recipes in your kitchen as it adds a crunchy texture that is a great compliment to dishes like meatloaf or stuffing. It is also a great addition to any type of juicing recipes. There is one caution however if you are using a masticating juice machine, make sure to cut up your celery into small pieces before dropping it in. The stringy fiber can wrap around the auger and cause it to jam. Other than that, it tastes great when juicing.
There are many ways that you can take advantage of celery, it is just important that you find a way that enjoy in order to benefit from all of its nutritious goodness.