Splendid Ways to Cook Your Salmon


THE flavor of salmon is distinctive, but its character can be readily altered and enhanced with simple, creative strokes. Katy Sparks, 34, the chef at Quilty’s, a restaurant on Prince Street, takes full advantage of that flexibility.

Ms. Sparks, has a wide-ranging repertory, but she is known especially for her inventive, infinitely variable approach to seafood. Like many another chef, when she cooks, she looks for ways to systematize her cooking technique so it can be repeated time and again with consistent results.

From a minimalist’s point of view, the development of a foolproof system is also ideal for the home, freeing the cook to focus — as Ms. Sparks does — on the quality of ingredients and other variables like herbs and spices and less on the pitfalls lurking in the cooking process.

One day last week, Ms. Sparks and I put a few salmon fillets through their paces, coating them with a variety of flavoring mixtures: rosemary, fennel and orange; ground porcini and pumpkin seeds, and a variation on the French quatre-epices (four spices).

First, she seasons the salmon with salt and pepper and prepares the herb or spice mix, which she firmly presses into the top (nonskin) side of the fish. Then, in a well-heated, well-oiled pan (a nonstick surface helps, but is not essential if the pan is hot enough), she sears the fillets, coated side down. Within a minute, the flavorings brown beautifully and adhere perfectly, after which the fillets are turned and finished in the oven, a step that makes the cooking neater and more predictably even.

To be truly foolproof, the system requires fillets of equal size. Then the cooking time can be gauged quite precisely, and you end up with the kind of lovely uniform fillets you see in restaurants. To serve four, buy 24 ounces of skinned salmon fillet, taken from the thick (that is, not the tail) end of the fish. Cut across the fillet to make the four pieces.

The remaining preparations are nearly as straightforward, but there are a couple of refinements that give the best results. Allowing the fillets to sit for a while after coating will encourage the fragrant seasonings to permeate the flesh of the fish; try 15 minutes or so at room temperature or a couple of hours in the refrigerator. Varying the cooking oil can also have an effect on flavor; extra virgin olive oil is the natural choice for the rosemary-based mix, clarified butter sets off the porcini flavor perfectly and peanut oil would be my first choice for the exotic four-spice powder. Not that these choices are critical, mind you.

Then there are side dishes. Ms. Sparks serves the Provencal salmon with couscous with almonds, or white beans with roasted garlic; the porcini-coated salmon with risotto or braised chestnuts, and the four-spice salmon with braised endive or a puree of celeriac. But once you try this technique, it’s likely that you’ll develop both side dishes and coatings of your own.


1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

2. Preheat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat for 3 or 4 minutes. Add the oil or butter called for in the recipe and, when it shimmers, place the fillets, coated side down, in the pan. Cook about 1 minute, or until the spice mixture forms a nicely browned crust.

3. Turn the fillets and cook about a minute more, then transfer to the oven. Cook about 4 minutes for rare salmon, 5 to 6 minutes for medium rare and 8 minutes for well done.


Time: 20 minutes

4 6-ounce, skinned salmon fillets

Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

2 tablespoons raw, shelled pumpkin seeds

2 tablespoons (roughly) dried porcini pieces

2 tablespoons grape seed or other neutral oil or clarified butter.

Season fillets on both sides with salt and pepper. Combine pumpkin seeds and porcini pieces, and grind them to a coarse powder in a coffee or spice grinder. Press some of the mixture onto the top of each fillet. Cook as below.

Yield: 4 servings.



Time: 20 minutes

4 6-ounce, skinned salmon fillets

Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

1 tablespoon coriander seed or ground coriander

1/4 teaspoon whole or ground cloves

1 1/2 teaspoons cumin seed or ground cumin

1 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg

2 tablespoons peanut oil, grape seed or other neutral oil, or clarified butter.

Season fillets on both sides with salt and pepper. If necessary, combine spices and grind them to a coarse powder in a coffee or spice grinder. Press some of the mixture onto the top of each fillet. Cook as below.

Yield: 4 servings.

A source from The minimalist a straightforward technique leading to splendid salmon

Dessert Recipe: Almond Butter Balls

This recipe by Shakeology is really simple to make and a healthy alternative to your chocolate-covered espresso beans that contain fats, sugars, and probably processed ingredients as well. Check out this Cafe Latte Shakeology dessert recipe and let us know how you like it!


Almond Butter Espresso Balls

  • (Makes about 12 servings, 2 balls each)
  • Total Time: 5 min.
  • Prep Time: 15 min.
  • Cooking Time: None

What You Need

  • 1 cup all-natural smooth almond butter
  • ¼ cup raw honey
  • ¾ cup dry old-fashioned rolled oats
  • 1 scoop Café Latte Shakeology
  • ½ cup raw sliced almonds

What You Do

  1. Combine almond butter, honey, oats, Shakeology, and almonds in a medium bowl; mix well with clean hands or a rubber spatula.
  2. Shape mixture into twenty four walnut size balls; place in airtight container.
  3. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour before serving.

Nutritional Information (per serving):

  • Calories: 214
  • Total Fat: 14 g
  • Saturated Fat: 1 g
  • Cholesterol: 0 mg
  • Sodium: 61 mg
  • Carbohydrates: 18 g
  • Fiber: 4 g
  • Sugars: 7 g
  • Protein: 8 g



Cooking has to be a habit


A habit is a behaviour pattern acquired by frequent repetition or physiologic
exposure that shows itself in regularity or increased facility of performance.

In other words, building the cooking habit involves cooking every day. Now before you throw in the towel in a fit of hopelessness, realize that building a habit isn’t about quality. Building a habit is about quantity and frequency.

As long as you cook every day, however small of a meal or snack you make, the habit will be built. This daily cooking habit doesn’t have to entail always making a dish from scratch or even a complete meal.

Here’s four simple ways to incorporate cooking into your daily routine:

1. Cook a complete meal for dinner or lunch

Preparing dinner or lunch is what typically comes to mind when thinking about cooking at home. And for good reason – this is the ideal end point that you want to get to.

Before going to the grocery store, come up with (or use your weekly Mealime meal plan) at least a couple of recipes you’d like to make. Grab all the ingredients that you will need for those meals and make them accessible and visible in your cupboards or fridge. If they’re hidden away, you won’t use them!

Choose recipes that are quick with clear instructions. Make it easy as possible!

2. Pair a home-made dish with a pre-packaged meal from the store or restaurant

If you currently subscribe to a takeout / pre-packaged meal habit, don’t try to cut this out too quickly. Instead, find a balance between your old routine and the new cooking habit you’re trying to build.

If you’re pressed for time or simply don’t want to cook a complete meal at home, grab a ready-to-eat dish from the grocery store or from your favourite restaurant (but make sure to get a bit less than usual). Then, think of what you could cook at home to complement the meal. Here are a few examples:

  • From the store: rotisserie chicken. At home: mashed potatoes or roasted asparagus.
  • From the store: salad kit or salad bar. At home: steak.
  • From the restaurant: vegetable fried rice. At home: sautéed chicken thighs.

Doing this is a great way to transition into cooking at home more often because it isn’t a drastic change. Small, consistent steps are key.

3. Prepare breakfast

Cooking a quick breakfast or simply combining a few ingredients (without necessarily cooking) will help you create the cooking habit.

Remember, it’s not about quality at this point. It’s all about putting in the time every day and gaining familiarity with using the equipment and tools. 

Whether you’ve planned dinner (at home or out with friends) or not, cooking a simple breakfast is a great way to put in your daily cooking time. Not only will you have fueled your body with energy for the day, but you’ll feel great about having completed your daily task. Note: don’t cheat yourself by counting ‘making’ cereal as part of your daily cooking time.

4. Whip up a quick snack

You’ve picked up breakfast from your favourite coffee shop, went out for lunch with co-workers, and just got home from having dinner with friends, so you haven’t cooked a single thing all day. This is bound to happen so don’t feel bad about it. Just make sure you don’t lose all of your progress!

Even a small effort helps build the cooking habit and there is alwaysan opportunity for that.

If making a snack is your last opportunity to continue the habit for the day, head to the kitchen and whip up something small. And if you’re not hungry, pack it up for tomorrow’s lunch. Here’s a few examples:

  • Frittata with any leftovers
  • Have cans of beans in your pantry? Heat them up, add spices, and throw in any veggies you’ve got.
  • Toast a couple slices of bread and make a sandwich with cheese, deli meat, veggies, or any nut butter with a sliced banana.

The easiest way to build a habit is to do your desired task every day, no excuses. On those days where you seem strapped for time make sure you take a few minutes to whip up something creative. Consistency is the mother of habit.

Important kitchen techniques a chef must learn


Nobuo Fukuda

• Knife skills-including knife sharpening.

• Sous vide technique.

• Keeping kitchen equipment, tools, and practices sanitary.

• Proper temperature control when handling all meat, fish, and vegetables.

• How to select and procure quality ingredients.

Christopher Gross

• It’s imperative for a chef to develop an extremely well-tuned palette.

• Get in the habit of tasting at every stage of the cooking process.

• A chef also has to be an expert with kitchen tools, knowledgeable about products and absolutely strict about maintaining the highest level of hygiene.

• In addition, a chef is something of a role model in the kitchen and must keep the atmosphere professional.

• And last, a successful chef will have the imagination and courage to explore, experiment and introduce new culinary feats to the world with complete confidence.

Kevin Binkley

• Working clean. You have to be impeccably clean all the time.

• Seasoning. How to use salt and acid (lemon juice, vinegar, etc.) to balance your food.

• Mis en place. How to be organized and have everything in its place.

• Emulsification. How to make unlike products (for example oil and water) become one.

• Precision. You must be precise and not compromise.

Chris Curtiss

• How to work clean in the kitchen. Cleaning as you go, learning proper food safety and sanitation.

• Good knife skills (You don’t want to cut yourself every time you are in the kitchen).

• How to follow a recipe.(This will lead to confidence working with different ingredients and being able to improvise).

• Sense of urgency.(Set time guidelines for yourself to improve your speed).

• Most importantly, have fun and love what you are doing while in the kitchen!

Eddie Matney

The techniques I recommend are these:

• Become a great businessman. I know that this is not a kitchen technique, but you need to be a businessman first.

• Knife skills. You need to be able to break down proteins.

• Cleanliness.

• How to season your proteins well without over-salting.

• Finally, a great chef needs to have a “sixth sense” in his kitchen. You need to know what’s happening without seeing it. Eyes in the back of your head.

Read more: http://archive.azcentral.com/style/hfe/food/articles/20100126chef-dish-top-five-chef-skills.html#ixzz4MlLzyYQi

Ultrasonic humidifier- The best choice I made

I work at mechanical company which is situated in desert area. I have been living here with my family for last one year. From last three months my father was having allergies from dust, sinus infections, excessively dry skin and consistent symptom of cold due to deficiency of moisture in air. We consulted with doctor regarding this. He suggested us to use some good humidifier at home. Humidifiers regulates moisture level in the surroundings thereby keeps air quality clean and healthy. 

Though there were different varieties of humidifiers in market. Humidifiers are basically classified in two types- cool mist and warm mist. Cool mist humidifiers are considered safe so I kept it in my think bucket. After enough research and information, I opted for ultrasonic humidifier which was cheapest yet energy efficient.


As I was not earning much so I had to go for some best ultrasonic humidifier with affordable price. I installed PureGuardian H1010 ultrasonic humidifier. There were some other alternates also eg. PureGuardian RH4610, Air aroma essential oil diffuser, Home office aroma humidifier etc. But PureGuardian H1010 was the best ultrasonic humidifier I could figure out. 

After installing it drastically reduced the health problems at my home. As most of the diseases are caused by viruses and bacteria who can’t travel in moist air regulated by humidifier. My father was having allergic problems because dry air takes moisture from his skin which causes severe allergic problems. Ultrasonic humidifier reduces our suffering time as it makes our body passages moist which results in healing faster and will reduce symptoms like sneezing and coughing. 

Being a lower middle class person, I was living in the area where electricity cost was considerable. But the choice I made was most energy efficient device. So it was good decision to get a humidifier if we consider its numerous advantages. So if anyone is planning to buy a humidifier, it would be wise decision to go for it.

Getting The Best Air Mattresses for My Family

We needed some new air beds and mattresses when my entire family including my parents, brother and his family, and my sister with her son wanted to come over during the Memorial Day weekend! Our house is not all that big. There is a large bedroom downstairs that we use. The two bedrooms upstairs are used by our son and daughter, and in case we have some guests, we rearrange the attic and spread some mattresses to make beds for them. Since this time the number of guests were far more than the attic could handle, we needed some new mattresses to lay in the living room to accommodate the children and ourselves. We decided to spare our bedroom for my parents and sleep in the living room with others. So we got looking at reviews of the best air mattresses 2016 to decide which mattress to buy. That was a month or so before their expected arrival!

Most mattresses that we looked at offered similar features. After some intense search though, we located an air bed that had a pillow casing inbuilt within the mattress. That was very important since we didn’t have sufficient pillows at home and buying them separately would be a real waste of money. This mattress was a twin, meaning we could accommodate two persons separately yet tuck in the same double sheet in its flocked top to give it the appearance of a large queen bed. My husband had a bad knee and he couldn’t bend much to get in and out of bed. This mattress was also great for him since if the twins would be folded one on top of the other, it would give additional height and make it a lot easier for my husband to get in and out!

The other features included a pump that would silently monitor the mattress for air pressure and inflate it automatically in case air escaped and the mattress would go limp. This was important to provide firmness throughout the night and assure a more restful sleep. The flocking was also made of good material, and most customers who had bought it were absolutely delighted with its performance!

We needed 3 of these twins, and ordered them straightaway. They were delivered within a couple of days, a week or so before the weekend. Most family had come over on Thursday of that weekend, and from that night all through the next Tuesday when they left, they slept soundly like logs through the night, each night. In fact, my parents and sister now wish to come over during Christmas! This time, my husband’s brother is also coming over, so we are again going to have a large family at home! No worries though, we know we can have them all sleep comfortably, and perhaps can fit in some more like a friend and his wife who is known to everyone in the family. They also wish to be a part of the merriment and relive old times together!

How to choose fresh fish – and get tips on grilling

Outdoor grilling is a fast, easy, and flavorful way to add more fish to your diet. Plus, cleanup is easy, and since you’re cooking outside, there’s no fishy smell to linger in the house! In this video, you’ll learn how to grill fish, including how to select the freshest fish at the market—and get the basic steps for grilling fish evenly. You’ll learn how to prepare your gas or charcoal grill for cooking fish. Also, since some fish have firm and others delicate flesh, we’ll show you the best methods for grilling different kinds of fish, from salmon to halibut, tuna to tilapia, from fish fillets to fish steaks and kabobs.

My Experience with Semi Automatic Espresso Machines

Most espresso and coffee fanatics claim that price dictates the quality of the shot brewed. I, on the other hand, strongly disagree with them. Price doesn’t always dictate the value. Instead, price dictates the features of the espresso machine. For instance, the high end machines are mostly super automatic meaning that you don’t have to do anything rather than pushing a button. Some of them also come with pre-programmed one-touch espresso and TFT features.

What I came to understand is that, most of the best espresso machine under 500 are semi-automatic and here the quality of the shot will depend on your skills. A wide majority of the best semi automatic espresso machine for 2016 available on the shelves are very easy to use. The first espresso cup I made was from a semi-auto espresso machine from Breville. The machine itself was quite stunning for a price tag below $500. While I used semi-auto machines I loved the fact that they give you the freedom to adjust your drink to suit your what your lips desire. Therefore, whichever flavor I desired, I got.

A vast majority of espresso machines that I tried out in the past usually came with a 15bar pressure pump which was suitable for the force required to crush the coffee beans. There will also be a stainless steel water boiler or thermos-coil heating system. Such a heating system is very durable as most of them brewed coffee for me for at least 5 years. Actually, I never changed my machines because of breakdowns. I just wanted to try out the new features on the new machines. Some machines under 500 will have an aluminum boiler which is susceptible to corrosion. In such a case, you should use bottled water rather than tap water.

There are also fully automatic espresso machines under $500 which are ideal for people who are always on-the-go’. A good example is the Philips Saeco Vienna Plus Automatic Espresso Machine. This machine enabled me to brew a cup by simply pushing a button. It also had a steam wand suitable for milk frothing.

In conclusion, I loved espresso machines under 500 but I was really tempted by the new machines and their unique features. Once in a while, I find myself brewing a cup from the semi-auto machines…

Grilled Shrimp Recipe




  1. Soak cured lemons briefly in a bowl with cold water to remove curing brine, about 10 minutes. Dry lemons with paper towels and finely mince.
  2. Stir minced lemon, mayonnaise, tarragon, and lemon juice together in a bowl. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and chill aioli in the refrigerator until cold, at least 15 minutes.
  3. Preheat an outdoor grill for high heat, and lightly oil the grate.
  4. Put shrimp in a bowl. Drizzle olive oil and sprinkle paprika and salt over the shrimp, stir to coat shrimp completely.
  5. Cook the shrimp on the preheated grill until they are bright pink on the outside and the meat is no longer transparent in the center, about 2 minutes per side. Transfer shrimp to a plate and serve with lemon aioli.

Espresso Makers for Your Home


Today I am going to give my reviews on some of the best espresso maker machines available in the market. Before that let us discuss how an espresso maker works. As the name suggest espresso maker brews the coffee by boiling the water and then pressurize it through coffee grounds and a filter. As a result of which our favorite thick and concentrated liquid called espresso is produced. There are various types of espresso maker machines available. Espresso machines are the innovation of the century for coffee lovers who hate to wait in cafe queues for a good tasting and quality coffee.

When you are going to purchase an espresso maker there are lot many options available which makes it very confusing for the buyer to purchase one. Whether it’s your first espresso maker or subsequent, doing basic research and reading espresso maker review is a smart option to know the advantages and disadvantages of every product. Espresso Maker price may vary depending upon the features and the coffee type which you will be using. In today’s market there is large number of brands available in the market with thousands of models of espresso maker. I would rather say more the espresso maker models more is the confusion. I hope this buying espresso maker review will help you to see things differently and you will be able to buy the best espresso maker according to your needs. This espresso maker review is honest and non-bias.
Personally I would recommend you these two espresso makers which I like the most

Nespresso Inissia

This espresso maker is very easy to handle, as there are only two programmable power button for preparing tasty espresso coffee. This product offers us an easy way of insertion and removal of capsules. It takes only 25 seconds in preheating. It consumes less power you can say it is a power saving device which automatically cut offs after being inactive for some time. It includes 24 ounce water tank and a folding tray which makes easy to prepare number of glass of coffee. By Nespresso inissia espresso maker you can make Americano and lattes too at home without expanding too much in the expensive cafes.

Mr. Coffee Cafe Barista

It is a one touch espresso maker with a removable milk jar which can be easily cleaned, filled and fitted on the machine. Mr coffee café barista gives a huge foam and lather to your cup of coffee which tastes amazing. A one touch control panel comes with an option of cappuccino, latte, and espresso. This machine has a removable water tank and adjustable tray to fit the large travel mugs.

Hope you will find this espresso maker review useful for your purchasing decision.

What I Have been Able To Do With My Kitchen Knife

To begin with; I have been shopping for kitchen knives for one of the longest times. After all, having been operating a home appliance store in town, I once in a while go out looking for some of the best products for my customers, and kitchen knives are among some of the kitchen tools I always come across. When it comes to the best kitchen knives reviews, with my experience, I have come learn how to pick the best kitchen knives from a group of knives. I know all that go into a great knife and people often come to me just for a few pieces of advice. Over the years, here a few of the good things I have been able to net from my kitchen knife and to some extend I owe all of it to the kind of choices I always make.


Just like any other cutting tool, versatility is one of the factors I always put into great consideration when it comes to the best kitchen knives reviews. The best part, with some of the best kitchen knives I have at home, it is amazing how I have been able to do quite a number of things. To me, a great kitchen knife is one that can help me do a number of things from slicing, dicing and even mincing. It cannot get better than that. Moreover, the kind of grip my knives come with is unbelievable; the handles are easy to handle,

At the end, just like my case, if you are thinking of buying a nice and high performing kitchen knife, I suggest you do a little bit of research on the top knives. It is important, I personally having had a not so good experience with an array of kitchen knives, I have come to realize that the choice I make can break or even make the number of great things I can do with my kitchen knife.

Making Iced Coffee Recipes


Mocha Coconut Iced Coffee
1 cup Starbucks Cold Brew Coffee
¼ cup coconut milk
¼ tsp coconut extract
1 tbsp chocolate syrup
sweetener to taste ice

Combine Starbucks Cold Brew Coffee with coconut milk, coconut extract, chocolate syrup and ice in a mason jar.
Shake well.

Vanilla Almond Iced Coffee
1 cup cold coffee
¼ cup almond milk, sweetened
¼ tsp almond extract
½ tsp vanilla extract
sweetener to taste

Combine coffee, almond milk, almond extract, vanilla extract and ice in a mason jar.
Shake well.

Irish Cream Coffee Smoothie
½ cup cold coffee
½ cup almond milk
1 ripe banana
1 tbsp chocolate protein powder
½ tsp vanilla extract

Combine all ingredients in a blender.
Blend until smooth.

Why I Will Always Keep A Great Set Of Cookware My Kitchen

A few years back, having a set of cookware in my kitchen is one of those things that had never crossed my mind. I loved cooking using those traditional methods and tools; however, that was soon to change. A friend came visiting for a weekend and she was surprised as to why I didn’t have even a single set of cookware. After a very lengthy discussion I had with her, I decided to give it a try and two days later, I had a stainless steel set in my kitchen. Although, there were quite a number of options available, she was able to help me pick the best cookware.


It is now over three months since I bought the cookware set and I love every single thing about it. It has in a myriad of ways changed the way I used to do things in my kitchen. For example, I love the kind of versatility they come with. I can literary do any kind of cooking with them; from frying, boiling among others, they are just the best. That has not only been the best part. The kind of durability they come with is simply mind blowing. I have had them in my kitchen for months and after each wash they are still as good as new ones.

Last but not least, if having an easy to clean and to maintain cookware is something you have always wanted, there is no way you would go wrong if you pick the best stainless steel cookware set today. You can wash them with water and soap or you just throw them into your dishwasher. At the end, if for years you have always wanted to be part of great cooking, just like what I did, I advise you go for the best set of stainless steel cookware. I have them in my kitchen, and if all that I have been able to get from them is anything to go by, you also will be happy about it.

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Recommendations by Lavues
Recommendations by Huffingtonpost

My Advice On Purchasing The Best Kitchen Knives Set

I love knives. Do you love knives? I’m in love with a kitchen with spruced up appliances. We all need things that were designed with the highest quality in mind. Somebody once said she loves knives because she spends most of her time in the kitchen – I do. I love knives, too, because edged tools have been at our side for ages. But I love special knives. If I only liked the actual cutting ability of knives, I would have just one cheap one.


There are numerous picks for the best kitchen knife set, but I’d rather get the MAC MTH-80 chef’s knife, it is my favourite. It looks really smart, an investment that could last a lifetime. My everyday dicing and slicing tasks are really smooth and quick. At least from my experience, it’s easier to maintain and is somehow better-balanced than all other models I’ve tried. It’s probably the best priced Western-style Japanese knife I’ve ever come across too. This knife fits snugly into my palms, but that might be a little different for those with larger hands – mine are relatively small. Overall, the knife is super sharp and has a cute tampered shape. Selecting a chef’s knife really depends on your personal preference, I wouldn’t hesitate to show you the way of MAC MTH-80 chef’s knife.

Picking a kitchen knife set isn’t easy, to say the truth. You’ll be spoilt of choices – but the best thing to do is to know precisely what you are looking for. When I was buying a kitchen knife set for the first time, little did I recognize the mistakes I was making – I didn’t pay attention to my needs. So I went ahead and purchased a ‘useless’ knife set. While I don’t think the following knife set will meet your needs, I presume most of us have common wants for knives. Somebody suggested that knife sets almost always mean terrible knives. Don’t always go for expensive knives, you will be satisfied by a good, affordable knife set. You only need to select carefully and don’t forget that dull knives are more dangerous in your kitchen. I like Wusthof classic knives because even the simplest and cheapest of them scream quality. At least they had you in mind when they were making them. The overall presentation is good, and the performance is sky high in the knife category. I’m sure that everything you are looking for in the knife you will get it with Wusthof.

Read this: How to select a quality kitchen knives

My Experience When Buying the Best Rice Cooker

rice (2)

I’m a fan of rice and I didn’t have a good rice cooker in my kitchen. The one I had is quite old and I had got it from my mom’s kitchen. This kitchen appliance didn’t meet my requirements anymore and I wanted a cooker that was bigger enough and which can serve my rice cooking requirements easily. I needed a cooker that could accommodate between 3 and 5 cups. However, not knowing where to start and how to go about it, I chose to read the best rice cooker reviews online.

I found that there were different sizes- the smallest being 3 cups while the largest is 10 cups. I a also found out that the cup which is referred to differs in size depending on whether it’s a US or Japanese one. I also found out that an average family uses a rice cooker with a five cup capacity. Nonetheless, I learned that the classification of the cookers is done according to their functionalities. There are the on and off cookers, cook and keep warm rice cookers and fuzzy logic cookers among others.

What was more important to me is how the rice cooker conducts heat. I was interested in an option that offers uniform heat conduction and which cooks the rice perfectly well. Also of interest to me was a cooker that could be cleaned with minimal effort. Fortunately, there were enough stainless steel choices which could be cleaned effortlessly. Other features that I wanted in a rice cooker were non stick pan, a lid and steamer trays. With the advancement in technology these days, I wanted a cooker with some basic safety features such as fuse protector and auto cord reel. Lastly, I had a budget ceiling, so I had to look for rice cookers whose cost was within my limits. Thankfully, I was able to find a reputable brand that had all the features I wanted.

Update Your Kitchen for Under $100


The Trick to Make Old Cabinets Feel New 

Shaker cabinets have been a classic style in the kitchen for years, and their popularity shows no sign of flagging. Among the 81 percent of kitchen renovators updating their cabinets, the top choice of door style is Shaker, found interior-design site Houzz’s 2016 Kitchen Trends Study. You can update flat cabinets without the help of a contractor by using these easy-to-follow instructions from Ashley, of the blog Cherished Bliss. Remove the cabinets, sand them, nail cut-to-size trim to the perimeter, fill in holes with wood filler, sand again and paint. (Here, a few tips for painting kitchen cabinets.) Remember, most local hardware stores rent tools if you don’t own the needed equipment. 

Estimated cost: $95 (including 1 gallon of oil-based paint) 


The New Paint Trend

Instead of playing it safe with a coat of Decorator’s White on your cherry-oak cabinets, give your kitchen a modern look by painting the top and bottom cupboards different colors. This contrasting technique was recently named one of the top kitchen trends for 2016 by the National Kitchen and Bath Association, and a flood of interior designers and bloggers have used the style in their own homes. The common thread we’ve noticed among most of these kitchens: One row is a neutral, like a white or a gray, and the other row commands more attention in colors like navy, pale green, emerald and matte black.

Estimated cost: $75

The Small Update That Makes a Big Impact

Swap out your current cabinet pulls for gold, copper or rose-gold ones. The of-the-moment warm metals change the look of your space while requiring very little effort. Plus, their shine creates instant visual interest, so people will notice the luxurious-looking hardware versus the not-so-pretty countertops.

Source: www.oprah.com