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Hello and Welcome to Country Comfort Recipes. Would you like to be able to make great tasting meals, desserts and goodies and save money doing it? Well look no further! Our recipes are down to earth, good home-cooking that won’t cost you a fortune to make. These recipes and tips come from the kitchen of a “Country Chef”, who knows how to make fancy looking, great tasting meals, desserts and goodies with a bakery flare and still use an everyday budget. So let’s get cooking!!

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Riding the Micro-Wave roller coaster

Microwave vs. Fresh

There are so many products out there today that you can throw in the microwave and presto in 2 minutes you have a gourmet meal at your fingertips. Right? We are going to see if we can figure out if faster is more harmful that it should be. So the fight is on! Look below for benefits and risks involved in microwave cooking. By looking at the back of a microwave meal box you can instantly see that what goes into keeping those meals looking fresh is a lot of preservatives. I as well as many know what it is like to live a busy lifestyle. I would bring a quick meal to work with me and throw it into the microwave and bam I was set. One day I decided to look at the back of the box. What I found actually sickened me. I actually went home and cleaned out my freezer. While the microwave is good for many things, I am a firm believer that fresh is always better than quick. Yes it takes a little bit longer, but the health benefits outweigh the time spent. Here is a quick recipe for a lunch that you don’t have to nuke for 2 minutes to eat! 

 

Turkey BLT

5 slices of deli turkey

3 strips of bacon (made in the microwave)

Lettuce

Tomato (sliced)

2 slices of whole grain bread

2 tsp mayonnaise 

Lay 2 paper towels down on a microwave safe plate. Lay out the 3 strips of bacon with about ½ inch between each slice. Cover the bacon with 2 more paper towels. Microwave on high for 5 minutes. Be careful, the plate will be hot. If the bacon is not done to you likeness microwave for 1 minute intervals until it is crispy.

Spread 1 tsp of the mayo on a slice of bread, lay down the turkey, bacon, lettuce and tomato. Spread remaining tsp of mayo on the other slice of bread and top sandwich. If you would like to spice up your sandwich even more, throw on a couple of slices of avocado. The sky is the limit!

 

 

Pros and Cons of Microwaving

 

Benefits of Microwave Meals

§ High vitamin and mineral retention. Yale-New Haven Hospital writes on their website that some foods cooked in a microwave will retain their nutritional value better than any other cooking method. Many cooking methods burn away important nutrients. Due to little or no added water, covered cooking and a short heating time, some microwave meals are recommended due to their ability to hold onto essential nutritional value. These foods include vegetables, burritos, popcorn, baked potatoes, casseroles and soup.

§ Flavor enhancement. Because micro-waved meals are cooked in their own juice, it eliminates the need to add butter, oils or salt. This enables the food to lock in its flavor, allowing you to enjoy it without ingesting unnecessary sodium, sugar or fat. If certain foods are cooked in a microwave they may encourage weight loss programs.

§ Real meals in less time. Using a microwave is fast and easy, but actually preparing nutritious meals rather than a quick meal is possible. Using Ziploc brand’s Zip ’n Steam bags can help prepare such things as juicy salmon, crisp vegetables and desserts such as apple slices with cinnamon or sliced plums, almonds and honey.

Risks of Microwave Meals

§ Chemical change. Some studies show that micro waved meats can form an agent called d-nitrosodiethanolamine. This chemical has been linked to causing certain cancers.

§ Cellular manipulation. In 1976, Russia banned the use of the microwave. Some of their findings included digestive disorders, free radical formation and immune system compromise. Most of these findings were due to the change in blood cells that had the potential to cause disease.

§ Explosions and burns. Many people forget or do not even know that cooking some foods in a microwave can cause potentially serious results. A raw egg, still in its shell, will explode like a firework if cooked in a microwave. Uncovered sauces or soups will spray throughout the oven when the heated center expands and comes in contact with the cooler outside. Cheese is also notorious for having a volatile response, potentially causing serious burns.

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