Diabetes Forecast

The Healthy Living Magazine

November is American Diabetes Month®

Cooking

The Plate Basics

16 Veggie Ideas
16 ways to enjoy more vegetables—and make them taste delicious

Cooking Tips from the Experts

Time-Saving Kitchen Tips from Chef Ronaldo Linares

  • How do you know when beans are done? Place one of them between your fingers and gently press it together. There should be little give. This indicates the beans are ready.

  • Resting meat after cooking will yield juicier and more tender meat. Resting allows the juices to redistribute.

Food Network Star Ingrid Hoffman Dishes on Easy Prep Sides and Meals

  • If the brand of quinoa you are using does not come pre-washed, make sure to rinse it well to remove the saponin which causes bitterness.

  • If you do not have a roaster, use whole carrots and celery sticks to lift the chicken and act as a roaster, plus you will be cooking your veggies at the same time.

  • When boiling sweet potatoes for mashing, it's best to cook them with the skin on so that they do not absorb a lot of water. The skins slip right off the cooked sweet potatoes. But if you like a chunky texture, mash the skins, too. They're full of fiber!

  • Cooking proteins in aluminum or parchment packets allows for them to cook in their own juices and it's a great way to cook your veggies and protein at once.

Weeknight Meal Expert Aviva Goldfarb Talks Cooking Strategy

  • When adding dry spices to a recipe, never measure or shake them over a boiling pot as the moisture and humidity from the pot may affect the color and flavor of the remainder of the bottle.

  • When you halve oblong vegetables such as zucchini or carrots, halve them lengthwise and put the flat sides down on the cutting board for quick, easy , and safe slicing.

  • To peel an onion easily, slice off both ends with a sharp knife. Score the skin and outside layer of the onion from end to end with a knife. Then peel the skin and outer layer with your fingers.

  • To get beautiful grill marks on your meat, don't move it at all before flipping it. To get crosshatches, rotate meat 1/4 turn before flipping it.

  • The easiest way to get the flesh from an avocado is to slice it in half lengthwise, remove the pit, and scoop out the flesh with a large spoon.

Chef Jackie Newgent Takes Flavor-Filled Approach to Healthy Food

  • When raw, onions can be pungent. If you like your onions on the mild side, tone down the sharpness by soaking diced or sliced onions in cold water for up to 20 minutes, then draining well and patting dry before use.

  • Be boring! Variety isn't always the spice of life. When a recipe calls for four types of beans, three types of bell peppers, or two types of berries, it's often for color variety. But these recipes will still taste good with only one type of bean, bell pepper, or berry. It'll save shopping and prep time !

  • Balance and uplift flavors with citrus juices, vinegars, or wines. Try matching by color: Lemon pairs well with fish, orange with chicken, and red wine with beef. Add a few splashes of aged balsamic or red wine vinegar to bottled spaghetti sauce when simmering or to fresh tomato slices when serving.

  • Marinating ingredients before cooking them can help boost nutrition, tenderness, and flavor. If you're marinating food at room temperature, marinate for no more than two hours. Ideally, you should marinate foods in a covered container in the refrigerator. Try marinating poultry breasts in buttermilk or yogurt; it creates more juicy meat.

  • Be liberal with herbs! Fresh herbs can add fragrance and flavor along with antioxidants to a finished dish. For the freshest, fullest flavor, add fresh herbs toward the end of the cooking process or just before serving a dish.

Barbara Seelig-Brown Takes the Stress Out of Cooking

  • White pepper is often used in cream sauce so you don't see black pepper specks, but black pepper is okay to use if you don't have white pepper in your pantry.

  • Some vegetables only require grilling on one side. Heat kills vitamins and minerals, so the crisper the better.

  • One of the tricks to roasting veggies is to make sure that you consider texture when cutting them. Cut harder veggies like carrots or potatoes into smaller pieces than the softer eggplant or zucchini if you are roasting them together.

  • To crush and peel garlic at the same time, you can place it on a cutting board and crush it with the side of a large chef's knife or a flat meat pounder.

  • If a recipe calls for fresh herbs and you only have dry on hand, you can easily convert to dry and vice versa. The ratio of fresh to dry is 3 to 1, so you will use 3 times the amount of fresh to dry.

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