How to Prepare Your Kitchen for the Perfect Thanksgiving Meal

You too can have a deliriously happy Thanksgiving with by preparing your kitchen appliances.

It’s the last thing on everyone’s mind, but the worst thing that could happen on Thanksgiving: your appliances malfunctioning. If your home is the stage for your holiday meal, your appliances are your stage crew. Keep them happy, and the show will go on.

While your recipe selection is crucial to the perfect Thanksgiving meal, those dishes can’t happen without a reliable, functioning kitchen. Avoid “pizza night” by taking a few cues from our appliance experts: Continue reading

Sparks Flying… in Your Microwave?

Did sparks fly (not the romantic kind) while you were in the middle of heating up your pizza pocket?

An arcing microwave, which is the likely cause of the sparks, happens when the center rack isn’t properly fitted in the rack holder. If arcing repeatedly occurs, it could cause damage to the microwave’s interior paint, as well as permanent damage.

If this paint has already worn off and you continue to see sparks in your microwave, you can touch up the interior with an appliance paint, found at any appliance specialty shop like Appliance Factory Parts. Check out our video above for more details.

3 Things You Can Make in The Microwave Besides Popcorn

For some, the microwave is the kitchen. There’s nothing more satisfying than a quick “zap” to turn cold pizza into its original glory from the night before, or the smell of popcorn warming up the kitchen during opening credits. But sometimes we need to mix things up a little. Here are some creative (and quick) recipe ideas for your microwave, from our Microwave Meals Pinterest board.

Quesadillas. These Mexican appetizers are quick, crazy versatile and cost very little to make. They can be eaten alone, served as simple party appetizers or stuffed with gourmet ingredients and paired with your favorite homemade salsas and other sides.
Quick step: Fill with cheddar and/or Monterey Jack cheeses with a dash of your favorite hot sauce and/or salsa. Microwave for 30 to 45 seconds.
Step up: Replace the above recipe with Colorado goat cheese, spinach and sliced portobello mushrooms. To make it a hearty meal, add some grilled chicken breast. Microwave on a dish covered with plastic wrap for 45 seconds to a minute.

Edamame. These fresh soybeans are a popular snack in Asian-Pacific cultures. They’re not only a filling appetizer, but they’re also packed with carbohydrates, protein, dietary fiber and important vitamins. 
Quick step: Steam frozen edamame in the microwave in a zippered plastic bag with a tablespoon of water for two minutes or until not frozen. Serve with sea salt and soy sauce.
Step up: Steam edamame and serve with a dip.

Chocolate chip cookies (well, just one). Sometimes all you need is one chocolate chip cookie. And not the kind that come in a package that try to feign that luscious, moist texture you can only get from a fresh batch. Hey, guess what? You can get that fresh taste in a solo version!
Quick step: Melt one tablespoon of butter in a microwave safe mug. Add one tablespoon of white sugar, one tablespoon of brown sugar, a few drops of vanilla, a pinch of kosher salt and finally, as many chocolate chips as you want. Microwave for 45 seconds to a minute and enjoy.
Step up: Is there such thing as a step up to a fresh chocolate chip cookie? Let us know by commenting below.

Summertime Recipes! Burgers & Salad

Summertime is here again! The sun is warm, the thunderstorms are a-kickin’ and the smell of good ol’ charcoal or.. propane, if you prefer, is in the air. It’s time to ready up the grill and get cooking.

Here are two easy-peasy recipes for a great summer night: Black bean burgers & Cucumber dill salad.

Black Bean Burger Recipe.

Click to enlarge, then print!

Click to enlarge, then print!

Cooking Appliance Options to Keep in Mind When Shopping

At this time of year you may find yourself spending a lot of time in the kitchen, and you may find yourself questioning the capabilities of your cooking appliances. If after all your frustration you decide it’s time for a kitchen revamp, keep the following range options in mind as you shop.

 GE True Temp-

The GE True Temp monitors and maintains the oven’s temperature. The true temp system has a platinum tipped oven sensor that senses heat loss and responds by warming with the heat element. Unlike other oven temperature controls, the True Temp system checks the oven’s heat every 2-3 minutes. Other ovens cycle every 7 minutes. GE goes into detail on their True Temp system in their info base.

Convection-

A convection oven cooks your food 25% faster than a conventional oven by blowing hot air around the oven with a fan. It also cooks food evenly by eliminating hot and cold spots in your oven. Watch the video below to see the difference between a convection and conventional oven.

Induction-

An induction stove uses magnetic energy in the stovetop coils to generate electromagnetic fields that cause your steel cookware to warm up. The only thing that gets hot when you use induction is the cookware. Induction cookware offers several benefits including saving energy which is environmentally friendly and saves money, provides safety by only heating the cookware, quickly change between temperatures and cooks twice as fast.

Black-Eyed Peas Recipe for New Years’

I was raised in the South where we ate food like grits and collard greens. In Colorado I’ve found it’s something most people turn their heads at—but I’ve decided to share a Southern tradition with ya’ll (see what I did there?).. It’s almost the New Year and it’s time to get out that can of black-eyed peas that’s been sitting in your pantry for 4 months.

The history of eating black-eyed peas for New Years day dates back to the Civil War, as fields and crops of black-eyed peas were ignored when the North invaded and destroyed or stole other crops. Since black-eyed peas were all that were left, it was all the surviving Southerners could eat to nourish themselves.

Black-eyed peas are supposed to be the first thing you eat on the new year, so it’s best to serve right after midnight or eat them for breakfast the next day. It’s believed that doing so brings prosperity and good luck by Southern folklore. Some folks even say you have to eat at least 365 black-eyed peas so you can have prosperity for each day of the year.

 I always hated the tradition growing up because black-eyed peas on their own are just not that good. For this New Year, I found a delicious down-home recipe to spice these suckers up, that way I can bring in the year in old-fashioned, but delicious, Southern style.

This is our last recipe post for the year, so hopefully it’s one you’ll enjoy!

 

Hoppin' John: Black Eyed Peas for the New Year. Click to enlarge, then print.

 

Recipe adapted from About.com. Recipe Card design by L.

Giving Cookies and Scrumdiddlyumptious Desserts as Gifts

Stumped on a gift idea for that friend of yours?

Try baking them up a batch of these easy recipes (one recipe doesn’t even require cooking ;) ) and wrap them up in holiday coloured cellophane! It’s the thought that counts, and these make me think: “Delicious.”

Click to enlarge & print them out for your recipe card box!

GingerBread Waffles with Hot Chocolate Sauce-- yum, breakfast!

Cranberry Hootycreeks-- I don't know what a Hootycreek is, but I know that this gift idea is definitely scrumdiddlyumptious.

Sour Cream Cutouts– these adorable looking cuties stay soft and creamy, great for after dinner desserts!

Recipes adapted from allrecipes.com. Recipe card design by L. 

Induction Cooktop Technology: Hotness for the Holidays

Cooking Goes High Tech for the Holidays
Induction cooking. It sounds like a hot new technology, but the idea of induction heating has been around since the early 1950s. Up until recently induction cooktops were expensive and generally only available for commercial use. Appliance Factory Outlet CEO Chuck Ewing said that it’s one of the hottest home kitchen appliances for this holiday season – economical for the every-day consumer and more convenient for holiday cooking. 

Better Cooking Technology
Appliance Manufacturer Samsung introduced an induction range that offers high-quality technology for an affordable price, giving consumers the opportunity to experience induction cooking.

 The induction cooktop boasts rapid cooking time because the cooking energy comes from a magnetic field. The cookware gets hot, not the cooktop surface. Over 93 percent of the energy used goes towards cooking the food, which is far more efficient than both gas and electric.

 This makes the induction cooktop a fitting appliance for households with children, those who are concerned with their energy usage, or those that value convenience and fast cooking times.

 Magnetic Cookware Needed
The only drawback is that the cookware used has to be made of the right metals. If the pan is aluminum or copper-based, they won’t heat up. “The best way to test for this is to see if a magnet sticks to the bottom of your pan”, said Ewing. If it does, it works for induction cooking.

 Portable Induction Cooktop
For consumers that can’t quite afford the price of a full induction cooktop range but still want to delight the chef in their family, Appliance Factory Outlet offers a portable induction cooktop by Frigidaire for less than $100, which comes with cookware.

Gluten-Free Holiday Recipes

For any of you who are gluten-intolerant or have Celiac’s disease, you understand that the holidays can be a real nightmare. Luckily, gluten-free foods have been rising in popularity lately, and eating gluten-free for the holidays has been getting easier and easier! In celebration of gluten-free holidays, I have whipped up some delicious gluten-free dessert recipes for those of you who can’t partake in the normal holiday fare.

Click the recipe cards to make them larger & print!


Gluten-Free Pumpkin Pie Recipe

Gluten-Free Stuffing Recipe

The Potato

Enjoy these interesting facts about potatoes as you try some different ways of cooking your potato this holiday season.

  • A potato is about 80% water and 20% solid
  • Potatoes are grown in all 50 states and in 125 countries
  • An 8 oz. baked potato has 110 calories
  • The average American eats 124 pounds of potatoes per year — Germans eat more than 200 pounds per year
  • The Irish Potato Famine was caused by a fungus that destroyed the country’s ENTIRE potato crop
  • The largest potato grown was 18 pounds and 4 ounces according to the Guinness Book of World Records — and was grown in England in 1795
  • Potatoes are more nutritious when eaten with the skin on
  • Potatoes were the first vegetable grown in space in 1995
  • Potatoes are second only to milk products as the most consumed food in America
  • You can treat facial blemishes by washing your face daily with cool potato juice
  • You can treat frostbite or sunburn by applying raw grated potato to the affected area
  • Reduce aches and pains by rubbing boiled potato water (cooled) to the affected area

Brought to you by the U.S. Potato Board

Cooking the Perfect Turkey

I think it’s hilarious that I’m writing you wonderful folks recipe cards for “the perfect turkey” when I’ve been eating meat for like.. less than a year. Yeah, I was a vegetarian (and a strict one) for quite a while.

 But, I do have excellent research skills, and with some Google-fu I have conjured up a great Turkey recipe for your perfect Thanksgiving dinner.

 I know that I will be up at 5am that day helping my mother, or at least, supervising while she yells at me to get out of the way of her Thanksgiving cooking routine. With a little luck, my recipe card here will give my mom some relief that the perfect turkey is easy to attain—and maybe it’ll help you, too! Enjoy!

Click to enlarge and print out to save in your recipe card box!

The GE Profile Gas on Glass Range: Stunning!

The JGB428 - the New Gas on Glass Range from GE Profile.

The JGB428 Gas on Glass Range from GE Profile balances style and practicality.

You’ve seen the new electric ranges with smooth, glass cooktops and radiant burners. They have a sleek style and are incredibly easy to clean up after any cooking session, and the ceramic glass is also durable. 

For those that envy that sleek glass look, but prefer the traditional reliability of the gas range, your answer is here. GE Profile just released the new Gas on Glass range that has all the attractiveness of a ceramic glass surface, but the reliability of gas and the control of your cooking heat that a gas range gives you.

The new model, which was released in September 2010,  features all the things you love about gas ranges, but better. It has heavy-cast cooktop grates that are actually Continue reading

All About Convection

Convection Oven- courtesy of GEappliances.com

Struggling to get that perfect baked good – evenly baked cookies, juicy rotisserie, perfect holiday turkey or fluffy cake – and in less the time? Despite your misconceptions there is a way to resolve your baking crisis. Perhaps some of you more seasoned bakers have even already heard of this baking revolution. Continue reading