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Gourmet Living

A gourmet is a person who is knowledgeable in fine food and drink.

Gourmet Cooking and Living

Learn the ins and outs of being a gourmet. Quick and easy gourmet recipes and tips for gourmet living.

How to Host a Gourmet Dinner

A French philosopher once said that eating alone was sadder than destitution. Certainly, no one likes to eat alone. Now that you have perfected that filet mignon, or vichyssoise soup, (or whatever your signature dish is), you will want to show off to your friends! But hosting a gourmet dinner is much more than good food. In order to truly impress your friends and acquaintances you must use as much skill and attention to details in entertaining as in the preparation of the food. Do not shy away from hosting if you are not by nature the next Martha Stewart. This article contains tips to turn your meal into a real event.

How to Host a Gourmet Dinner

Great Camping Recipes

Planning a campout? Here are some really terrific Camp Fire recipes . Great ideas for open fire cooking!

Backpacker Bars
Backwoods Chili Rice Skillet
Boy Scout Dutch Oven Peach Cobbler
Camp Fish
Camp Hash
Camp Taters
Camp Trail Corn Bread
Camp-o-ree Cornbread
Campfire Apples
Campfire Clam Chowder
Campfire Comfort Wings
Campfire Goulash

And much more Camp Fire Cookout Recipes!

Save Time Cooking

Does the idea that good food has to take a long time to make keep you from spending time cooking? There are many ways to help speed and efficiency in the kitchen. The arrangement of your kitchen, as well as the tools you use, make all the difference. Don't give up on trying to expand your skills and abilities. Try these suggestions to make gourmet cooking well within your time constraints.

Save Time Cooking

Beans, Beans and More Beans

Beans will be filling, satisfying and incorporate many necessary nutrients into the diet. Combined with rice they are a complete protein and provide all the 8 amino acids for the body. They are inexpensive and packed full of flavor. It doesn't get much better than beans.

Beans, Beans and More Beans

A Chocolate Primer

A trip down the baking aisle in a grocery store presents the pastry chef with more options for chocolate than the candy counter. But if you’re stuck in a pinch, is it okay to substitute semi-sweet chips with a bittersweet bar? What can a glimpse at the list of ingredients tell you about a chocolate bar? Besides color, is there any real difference between white chocolate and milk chocolate? And why does European chocolate feel different in your mouth than American? After reading this article you will be able to answer these questions. However, we can’t guarantee that you’ll make a better chocolate mousse!

A Chocolate Primer

Working Up an Appetite

One of the greatest experiences of being human is to be out in nature. There is just something about being in the fresh open air of the wilderness that makes a person feel more alive, more grounded. The stresses and responsibilities of life lessen in the great outdoors and it is less complicated. After a long day hiking or on the river even if exhaustion is felt, it is refreshing and invigorating. Along with the hard work comes a hearty appetite and a good meal is welcomed by everyone. Even food tastes better when enjoyed in nature and it is received with enthusiastic appreciation. The supper that is tasty is all the more satisfying. A cook can really get rave reviews at a camp. If some thought and a little preparation are made a great meal can be enjoyed and increase the quality of the outdoor experience. Here are some suggestions.

Working Up an Appetite

Variety is the Spice of Life

People are creatures of habit and largely base choices on that which is familiar. Although some habits are good, cooking the same types of food over and over zaps creativity and breeds indifference in the kitchen. Food is not only necessary for survival, it is also a main source of enjoyment. Making the most of our meals increases pleasure and happiness. If your dinner hour is hum-drum bring something less predictable home from the market. One thing certain to add variety to your meals is broadening your selection of mushrooms. Mushrooms add flavor, texture and nutrition to appetizers, soups, salads and entrées. The possibilities are endless, and the results are fabulous.

Variety is the Spice of Life

Romantic Recipes

Recipes and craft ideas for bring romance into your relationship. Creative romantic recipes for Valentines Day.

Romantic Recipes & Crafts

Eat Gourmet and Watch Your Weight

Do you love good food, but could do without the extra calories? Consider these tips to eat gourmet while still keeping an eye on your waist line.

Eat Gourmet and Watch Your Weight

Gourmet Cooking Tips

Check out these collection of cooking and shopping tips:

~ Look for items on sale. This is your opportunity to try products you wouldn't normally buy. Be sure to check the expiration dates, though. Some stores try to unload expiring products with sales.

~ When cooking a new recipe, read the recipe at least twice. Prep work is important most of the time, but especially when trying a new recipe.

more Gourmet Cooking Tips

White Christmas Bars in a Jar

White Christmas Bars in a Jar

1/4 cup white chocolate or vanilla milk chips
1/2 cup chopped pecans, toasted* and cooled
1/2 cup sweetened dried cherries or cranberries
1/2 cup light brown sugar, packed**
1 cup buttermilk biscuit baking mix
1/2 cup brown sugar, packed**
1 cup buttermilk biscuit baking mix

In 1-quart wide-mouth glass jar, gently layer and pack ingredients in the order listed, beginning with the white chocolate or vanilla chips. If there is any space left after adding the last ingredient, add more white chocolate or vanilla chips to fill the jar. Place lid on top. Cut an 8-inch circle of fabric to cover lid. Place fabric over lid; secure in place with ribbon or raffia. Decorate as desired.

White Christmas Bars in a Jar

Peppermint Marshmallow Sauce

Peppermint Marshmallow Sauce

This is very good over ice cream.

2/3 cup light corn syrup
3 tablespoons butter or margarine
1 (7 ounce) jar Marshmallow Crème
1/2 cup half-and-half
1/2 cup crushed hard peppermint candy
In medium saucepan, cook corn syrup and butter over medium heat until mixture comes to a boil, stirring constantly. Cook 5 minutes, stirring constantly.
Cool for 5 minutes. Stir in Marshmallow Crème, blending well. Gradually add half-and-half, stirring until mixture is smooth. Fold in crushed candy. Serve warm or cool over ice cream. Store any remaining topping in refrigerator.
Yields 2 cups.

Peppermint Marshmallow Sauce

Festive Holiday Trifle

Festive Holiday Trifle

2 small boxes raspberry gelatin
1 pint frozen raspberries
1 large box vanilla pudding mix
1 pint whipping cream, whipped
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup miniature marshmallows
1 angel food cake, broken into pieces
Maraschino cherries
Chopped walnuts

Dissolve gelatin in 2 cups boiling water in bowl; cool slightly. Add frozen raspberries; stir until thawed.
Prepare pudding according to package instructions, using 1/2 cup less milk.

Combine whipped cream, sugar, vanilla extract and marshmallows in medium bowl. Mix well.

Layer 1/3 of cake, gelatin mixture, pudding and 1/3 of the whipped cream in a 4-quart glass bowl. Repeat layers with remaining ingredients, ending with whipped cream mixture. Garnish with maraschino cherries and chopped walnuts.
Yield: 12 servings

Festive Holiday Trifle

Christmas Plum Pudding with Brandied Cider Sauce

Christmas Plum Pudding with Brandied Cider Sauce

Although often confused with fruitcake, this classic Christmas dessert tastes more like a rich, dense spice cake. This version uses butter instead of the traditional suet and can be made with your choice of candied fruit, currants, or raisins.

1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon grated orange rind
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
1/4 cup butter or margarine (at room temperature)
4 large egg whites
1/2 cup apple cider or apple juice
3/4 cup raisins
1/2 cup shredded carrot
1/3 cup candied cherries, halved, or currants or raisins
1/3 cup chopped candied pineapple, currants, or raisins
1/3 cup pecan halves
Brandied Cider Sauce

Christmas Plum Pudding Recipe

Christmas Chocolate Mousse

Christmas Chocolate Mousse

3 cups miniature marshmallows
1/2 cup milk
1 (4 ounce) Hershey chocolate bar, broken
1 cup whipping cream
6 small candy canes

Put marshmallows, milk and Hershey bar in the top of a double boiler. Stir over hot water until melted and cool.
Whip whipping cream and fold into cooled chocolate mixture. Pour into 6 small dessert dishes and chill.
When ready to serve, garnish with a daub of whipped cream and a small candy cane or a piece of fresh holly.
Serves 6.

Christmas Chocolate Mousse

Gourmets Get Ready for Induction Cooking

Get ready, a cooking revolution is at the kitchen door. What the cell phone did for the telecommunication industry, induction cooking is now doing for the food industry. While the technology has been around for decades, in recent years it has been greatly improved upon, already taking hold in Europe and Japan. There can be no doubt that magnetic induction promises to be the most attractive cooking option on the market. In this article we will discuss how induction cooking works, how it differs from electric and gas stovetops, and explain the advantages and disadvantages of the new technology.

Induction Cooking

Tips for Preparing Food

Specific steps to assist with food preparation of various types of foods. Learn the basics!

Gourmet Recipe Directory

Easily locate recipes for your favorite dishes, desserts, drinks and appetizers. Fantastic free online cookbook of gourmet recipes.

Gourmet Popcorn

During the Great Depression, popcorn at 5 or 10 cents a bag was one of the few luxuries that struggling families could afford. When other businesses failed, the popcorn business thrived.

During World War II, sugar was sent overseas for U.S. troops, which virtually depleted the abundance of sugar left in the States to make candy. Thanks to this unusual situation, Americans ate three times as much popcorn.

Gourmet Popcorn

Are You a Gourmet?

What exactly does it mean to be a gourmet? Does watching public television cooking shows on Saturday morning while folding the laundry count? How about being fascinated with Julia Child and having all of her cookbooks on your Amazon wish list? Knowing what zest, garam marsala and charcuterie mean, does this qualify you as being a gourmet? Where did the term come from and what exactly does it mean?

Are You a Gourmet?

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