Monthly Archives: February 2017

Traditional Food in Colombia – Know Some Facts

Colombia has a privileged location in South America, with part of its coast to the cool Pacific Ocean and part in the Caribbean with its warmer waters. Part of the country has mountains, other part has valleys. Therefore they can grow all kinds of fruits, vegetables and have all kinds of seafood.

Through its history, Colombia has received influence of the Peruvian and Brazilian cuisine's tradition, but also from the Japanese and Arabic way of cooking. To this add their own cultural heritage, as the Amerindians also raised different species of animals, with which they could make delicious dishes. And to this variety we also must add the Spanish tradition.

We could say that the Colombian cuisine uses different meats, fishes, plenty of vegetables and lots and lots of exotic and delicious fruits. Also their delicacies depend on the regions, as food is different in the mountain regions than what is on the coastal regions. Its food is always, anyway, very tasty, with natural flavors, and not too spicy. Colombians also love soups, which are practically a must in each dinner or lunch. But the most important fact is that they love their food done with fresh ingredients, and fresh fruits.

In Colombia people have usually three meals a day. First one, breakfast, before to going to work. The most important meal is lunch. It is a meal consisting of three courses, soup, main dish and a drink, and dessert or fruit. Dinner is very light, taken around 9:30 PM.

What is more fascinating about Colombia is that all changes according to the region where one is. If in the jungle, or in the coast, or in the valley, people have their own way of dressing, have their different food preferences, their favorite drinks. And this is what makes it such a rich country and so very interesting.

But in all these regions there are some things in common too. They take it very seriously what their food is, the recipes they use and the different techniques are they same as centuries ago, giving them a sense of nationalism, reinforcing the feeling of being all from the same country. Their typical meals are full of tradition and history and they will not change that.

We 've were to the if name some of the traditional dishes or food of Colombia , we 've Could choose the Arepa, the Sancocho, the Fritanga. Also lots of chicken, beef, fish corn, onions tomatoes, potatoes, rice and several different legumes.

To all this we should add a wonderful cup of coffee, the best in the world!

How Hospital Cafeterias Are Increasing Retail Revenue

Hospitals retail areas find themselves under increasing pressure to meet revenue goals

Faced with rising costs and financially challenging times, healthcare organizations are increasingly looking to their retail areas as an additional source of revenue generation. Although hospital foodservices operations are well known for providing patient meals, most if not all are also responsible for the retail side of foodservice operations at their onsite cafeteria, snack bar and or coffee bar. Tasked with growing their revenue contribution to the hospital, many Directors of Foodservices and Cafeteria Managers are taking creative steps to increase patronage. Increasing employee participation, enticing members of the local community, and tailoring their food and beverage offerings to the needs and culinary preferences of patrons are all goals of aggressive foodservices operators.

Grab and Go

In a busy healthcare environment, speed is key! That's why over the past few years, many hospital cafeterias have redesigned their space to accommodate new coolers stocked with appetizing pre-packaged food choices; ranging from yogurt and fruit parfaits, to sandwiches and salads. These portable food options offer a highly convenient and fast way for busy healthcare workers to quickly grab something to eat or drink while on the run. The pre-packaging also enables staff to bring these items back to their desk or another area for consumption at a place other than the cafeteria. When used with a POS system and bar coded labels, check out of these grab and go items at the point of sale takes only a few fast seconds.

Dining Experience

Many healthcare facilities have renovated their cafeterias to offer a more appealing restaurant-like dining experience to attract employees, visitors and guests. Their goal is to entice hospital workers to remain onsite for lunch instead of seeking off site alternatives, appeal to visitors, and in some cases attract the local community. To accomplish this, Foodservices Directors are not only creating a visually appealing dining area, but also are hiring highly talented and experienced restaurant chefs with a flair for engineering new and delicious menus. Using a POS system with menu item performance tracking gives the chefs a clear picture of which menu items are performing well, and which should be removed from the menu rotation.

Employee payroll deductions

Managed through a Point of Sale System as an employee payroll deduction to be deducted from a future pay check, the ability to make a retail purchase by scanning the employee badge already carried by the healthcare worker is seen to be a valuable benefit and convenience. When employees can present the badge they already carry as a form of payment, they no longer have the need to carry cash or credit cards as they move about the facility. Frequently, this convenience means the difference between having the time to enjoy a delicious meal versus a skipped lunch or breakfast. Cashless payment also translates into an increase in add on food and beverage purchases, when the employee does not have enough cash on their person to cover all the choices they'd like to make.

Credit card processing

It's not unusual for visitors to find themselves without cash on hand when visiting a patient in the hospital. We are all consumers accustom to paying for most everything with our debit or credit cards, and are therefore quite surprised to find out the hospital cafeteria does not accept credit or debit cards. Although most hospitals offer an onsite ATM, the inability to accept credit or debit card payments translates into a lost sale; and quite possibly a full tray of food left at the checkout counter because the visitor did not have a convenience payment option. The checkout process is a big part of the customer experience, so it is important that credit and debit card processing is fast and fully integrated with the cash register operations of the POS system.

Great Convection Oven Recipes – Classic Cream Puffs

If you want good pastry made right, here is a great convection oven recipe. If you want, the cream puffs can be prepared up to 12 hours before the filling. You can just freeze them to store longer, just make sure that they are wrapped airtight. To cook the puffs in this recipe, just place them thawed on a baking sheet. Make sure they're placed slightly apart and bake for 5-8 minutes on a 400 degree oven.

This recipe serves 10 people

Ingredients for this convection oven recipe are:

Cream Puff Dough

Filling (you can choose any of these fillings):

Ice cream

Choco-Orange cream

Whipped cream, lightly sweetened and flavoured

Chocolate flavoured ice cream to be put as a topping (optional)

Confectioner's sugar (optional)

Preparation of this convection oven recipe:

1. Use a spoon to separate the cream puff dough into 10 mounds. The portions have to be equal at about 1/4 cup. Place these on a baking sheet and make sure they're at least two inches apart.

2. You then have to bake the puffs in a convection oven set at about 375 degrees for about 30 minutes, or until they are golden brown. If you are cooking multiple sheets at the same time in a single oven, you should make sure to change their positions halfway through baking. Use a wooden skewer to poke holes into each puff and then continue baking them until they're golden brown. After that, cool the puffs in a rack.

3. Slice off the top of each puff and add about 1/2 cup of your preferred filling. Replace the tops you cut off and then you can put in the toppings you want. This convection oven recipe is very easy to make and you could try experimenting with different fillings.

A Fancy Twist on Yellow Cake Mixes

Do you like fancy dessert cakes? Are you looking for a few simple recipes that you can make at home that taste just as good as a store bought cake? If so, I think you will enjoy these easy recipes.

Before we get to the recipes, I would like to share a few important baking tips with you.

Baking Tips:

1. Invest in a cake tester. You can pick up one for less than $ 6.00 at most kitchen stores.

2. Do not over bake! I remove mine from the oven 3-4 minutes before the recommended time. They will continue baking in the pan.

3. Do not grease and flour your baking pans unless the recipe calls for it.

4. Always let them cool before frosting.

Banana

2 small bananas
1 box of yellow cake mix
1 box of instant banana cream pudding mix
4 eggs
1 c. water
1/4 c. oil
1/2 c. chopped nuts, optional

Slice bananas into a large mixing bowl. Beat until they are well mashed, then add in the remaining ingredients. Mix with a mixer at medium speed until all ingredients are blended together. Pour into a well greased and floured 10 "tube pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 60-70 minutes, let cool in the pan for 20 minutes before removing. Sprinkle with confectioners sugar when cake is completely cooled.

Lemon

1 box yellow cake mix
1 box instant lemon pudding mix
4 eggs
1/4 c. salad oil
1 c. water
1/4 c. confectioner's sugar

Combine and blend all of the above ingredients (except for the confectioner's sugar). Beat at medium speed for 2 minutes. Pour into greased and floured baking pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes or until done. Cool for 15 minutes in the pan and then turn it out onto a wire rack. Sprinkle with confectioner's sugar. Let cool and enjoy.

Strawberry Jello

1 box yellow cake mix
1 box strawberry flavored gelatin mix
1 pkg. dream whip

Follow directions on box and bake cake in a rectangular baking pan. Make gelatin according to directions on the package. Once it is done baking, poke holes all over it using a large pronged fork, then pour gelatin all over cake focusing on the holes. Put dream whip on top as icing. Refrigerate for 2 hours before serving.

Lemon-Lime Jello

1 box yellow cake mix
1 box lemon flavored gelatin mix
1 box lime flavored gelatin mix
1/3 c. reconstituted lemon juice
1 c. confectioner's sugar

Add gelatin granules to the dry cake mix. Proceed to mix cake, following the directions on the box. Pour batter into a 9 x 13 inch floured and greased baking pan. Bake according to package directions. Mix lemon juice and confectioner's sugar together. When it's done baking, prick the surface with a fork. Pour lemon and sugar glaze over the top of the cake. Let cool before serving.

Type 2 Diabetes – Maintain Stable Blood Sugar With These Thai Food Classics

Thai food is one of the fastest growing cuisines in the West. And with dishes more flavorful and rich than most other countries can offer, it's no wonder more and more Type 2 diabetics are turning to Thai food to eat healthy without needing to choke down bland salads and sandwiches.

However, not every Thai dish on your local Thai restaurant menu is appropriate for diabetics. A meal with papaya salad, fried noodles and sweetened sticky rice will likely push your blood sugar higher than a kite. Lucky for you there are a few mouth-watering Thai dishes that are ideal for keeping diabetic blood sugar in check.

Spicy Shrimp Soup: Spicy shrimp soup ( also known as "tom yom goong") contains fresh shrimp, Thai spices and coconut milk. Although not as healthy as salmon, shrimp is rich in omega-3 fats. Omega-3 fats combat the inflammation that underlies insulin resistance. Research published in the 2009 "FASEB Journal " found that supplementing with omega-3's from seafood reduced insulin resistance stemming from obesity.

Coconut Curry: Coconut curries such as panang curry are bursting with foods like vegetables and lean meats, which should form the basis of your diabetic diet. Coconut oil is rich in a unique type of fat known as medium chain triglycerides. A paper in the February 2009 "Diabetes Metabolism Research Review" concluded that medium chain triglyceride-rich foods help diabetes manage their blood sugar.

Morning Glory: Stir-fried morning glory is the perfect Thai side dish. Morning glory is a green vegetable that can help you lose weight. Studies show that diabetics that gorge themselves on vegetables tend to weigh less than those that avoid vegetables.

Grilled Chicken: Many Thai restaurants offer grilled or baked chicken. Once you remove the skin, this dish becomes quite low in saturated fat and calories. Research suggests increasing your protein intake from healthy sources like grilled chicken can keep appetite at bay and may even boost your metabolism.

Steamed Vegetables: It does not get much healthier than steamed vegetables like broccoli, tomatoes, onions and carrots. However, Thai people would not accept a bland dish like steamed vegetables on their own. By adding a dash of salt and a generous amount of coconut milk, a dieting classic turns from boring to mouth-watering.

Fresh Fruit: Thailand offers fruits like pineapple , dragon fruit and mango that are not only flavorful but chock full of important vitamins and minerals. Ask your local Thai restaurants to make a fruit plate consisting of traditional Thai fruits for your dessert. Be sure to limit your fruit intake as certain Thai fruits like mango and pineapple are sugar-rich.