Continuing Your Quest for Fitness With DealDash

 

On Monday we talked about getting a great body in time for the summer using exercise. Today we are talking about the second part of the equation – eating healthy.

We all have a pretty good idea of what it means to be a healthy eater – everyone know that they should be limiting their carbohydrate and fat intake and boosting their veggie intake. However, sometimes making healthy food choices can be difficult because you are accustomed to eating your favorite junk foods, sweets, pastas, and other delicious but so so healthy foods.

Luckily you can take the sting out of cutting back on your favorite foods by substituting something similar that has less fats and calories. The best way to do that is to try and do a lot of cooking at home.

A few years ago I tried the Atkins diet to lose some weight. It was extremely difficult giving up so many different foods, and now that I am a little bit more well informed I know that the Atkins diet is possibly not the healthiest diet around, but when I was following it I learned a lot about food substitutions. For example, you can make an AWESOME tasting cheesecake filling with Neufchâtel cheese (lower fat and calories than regular cream cheese), Splenda instead of sugar (0 calories), a pinch of salt, and vanilla extract – throw that all into your KitchenAid stand mixer that you got from DealDash, whip it up, and there you have a cheesecake filling that is just as delicious and significantly lower in fat and calories than a traditional cheesecake filling recipe.

KitchenAid Artisan® Series Aqua Sky 5 Quart Stand Mixer

 

Another great way to attempt to eat healthier without feeling like you’re sacrificing too much is making delicious smoothies! You can make smoothies out of just about any yummy tasting fruit like strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, etc, and then add in some healthy vegetables such as spinach or kale and you won’t even be able to notice – and neither will your kids if you’re trying to get the whole family on board with healthier eating. Simply find any smoothie recipe online such as:

Simple Smoothie

  • 1 banana
  • 1 cup frozen strawberries
  • 1 cup frozen blueberries
  • 1 cup frozen cherries
  • 4 ice cubes
  • 1/2 cup orange juice
  • 3/4 cup vanilla yogurt

Just blend it all together in your blender from DealDash, sip, and enjoy!

 

 

 

Hamilton Beach 70950 SaladXpress Counter-top Food Processor Electric w/ConesKitchenAid Artisan Stand Mixer, Apple GreenT-Fal Initiatives 18-Piece Nonstick Inside and Out Cookware Set

I hope this article has encouraged you to try some of my strategies for trying to eat a little bit healthier. If you’re interested in getting some items to help you with cooking at home head on over to DealDash. DealDash has food processors, stand mixers, cookware, and plenty of other items that you can use. Check out the Kitchen & Appliances category and I’m sure that you’ll find something that you can use to make you and your family a little bit healthier. Good luck and happy bidding everyone!

Living Healthy: How to Pick the Best Fresh Produce

 

Welcome back to DealDash Blog’s Living Healthy series. Today’s blog is all about the tips and tricks to choosing the best produce items at the supermarket.

 

I don’t know how many times I have gone into the supermarket, and picked out some great looking produce, got it home, and it tastes…Not bad, but tastes like nothing, like cardboard. This was happening to me way too often, so I started doing a little research to figure out how to get the best produce at the supermarket that I was able to find.

Of course, the number one way to get the freshest and best tasting produce is to buy things when they are in season where you live. If you’re somewhere warm like California or Florida, you’re in luck! Not only are there some great things grown right in your own home state, the distance that other things have to travel up from Mexico or South America is considerably shorter than someone who lives in Maine or Montana.

Here are some quick and easy tips on picking great tasting produce at the supermarket even if the items are actually in season:

Apples: Choose fruits that are deeply colored, firm, naturally shiny, and heavy for their size.

 

Artichokes: Choose globes that have tight leaves and feel heavy for their size. The leaves should squeak when pressed against each other.

Asparagus: Choose firm, smooth, and brightly-colored stalks with compact tips. Avoid limp stalks. Choose stalks of equal thickness to ensure even cooking times.

Avocados: Choose avocados that feel slightly soft to the touch. Firmer avocados may be ripened at home, but avoid rock-hard ones. Also avoid avocados with cracks or dents.

Bananas: Choose bright yellow bananas to eat right away or green bananas to ripen at home. Avoid fruits that are bruised or split.

Blueberries: Choose berries that are firm, dry, and blue (not red or green). A white sheen is natural. Also check the bottom of the basket to make sure there aren’t any crushed or spoiled berries.

Broccoli: Choose broccoli with firm stalks, tight florets, and crisp green leaves. Avoid yellowed or flowering florets.

Celery: Choose firm, unblemished stalks. The stalks and leaves should be green, not yellow.

Corn: Choose corn with bright green husks and moist but not slimy silk. Peel back the husk to ensure the kernels are plump and not dry.

Cucumbers: Choose cucumbers that are uniformly green (not yellow).

Grapefruits: Choose fruits that have smooth, thin skins and are heaviest for their size. They should feel firm but slightly springy to the touch. Don’t worry about color.

Grapes: Choose fruits that are firm, plump, and heavy for their size. They should be firmly attached to the stems without wrinkled or brown spots.

Lemons and Limes: Choose fruits that are fragrant and heaviest for their size. Avoid fruits that are shriveled.

 

Lettuce, Spinach, and Other Leafy Greens: Choose greens with fresh, crisp leaves. Avoid any that are wilted or slimy.

Mangoes: Choose fruits that are slightly soft to the touch and fragrant near the stem end.

Onions and Shallots: Choose dry, firm bulbs that feel heavy for their size. Avoid any with soft spots or green sprouts.

Oranges: Choose fruits that heaviest for their size and have firm, smooth skins. Don’t worry about color. For Mandarin oranges, make sure skins are firm, not shriveled.

Peaches: Choose fragrant, deeply colored (not green) fruits that are firm but slightly soft to the touch.

Pears: Pears are usually picked before they are fully ripe, but choose fruits that are free of bruises and look for any that are getting soft just below the stem.

Peas: Choose crisp, green pods. Avoid bulging, dried, yellow, or white pods.

Peppers: Choose firm, naturally shiny peppers that feel heavy for their size.

Pomegranates: Choose fruits that are heavy for their size. Cracks are a good sign that the fruits are bursting with plump seeds; just make sure there isn’t any mold in the cracks.

Potatoes: Choose firm, smooth potatoes. Avoid those with bruises, green spots, or sprouts.

Strawberries: Choose berries that are fragrant, uniformly red (not yellow or green), and shiny with fresh green tops. Also check the bottom of the basket to make sure there aren’t any crushed or spoiled berries.

Summer Squash: Choose squash with naturally shiny, taught, unblemished skin. Avoid squash that appear dull or have soft spots.

Sweet Potatoes and Yams: Choose potatoes with firm, unwrinkled skins and no bruises or cuts, as they are highly perishable.

Tomatoes: Choose tomatoes that are fragrant, smell earthy at the stem end, and feel heavy for their size. Avoid tomatoes with wrinkled skins.

Watermelons: Choose fruits that are firm and heavy and sound hollow when thumped. A properly ripened watermelon should have a yellow spot on one side where it sat on the ground

 

There we go! That’s the list! I personally made a copy of this list and keep it with my supermarket coupons so I know what I’m looking for when I am shopping for fruits and veggies.

Another way to be sure that you are getting great produce is to shop at the farmer’s market. The only downfall there is that you will probably only be able to find things that are in season. In my area, there is a farmer’s market going on in my town and every small town around me. When you go to the farmer’s market you are getting delicious fruits and veggies that are extremely fresh because they are grown locally. In addition to that, the prices are definitely better than any supermarket around, especially if there are multiple vendors selling the same fruits and veggies.

Hamilton Beach 70950 SaladXpress Counter-top Food Processor Electric w/ConesKitchenAid Artisan Stand Mixer, Apple GreenT-Fal Initiatives 18-Piece Nonstick Inside and Out Cookware Set

I hope this article has helped you learn how to pick the best produce! If you’re interested in getting some items to help you with cooking at home head on over to DealDash. DealDash has food processors, stand mixers, cookware, and plenty of other items that you can use. Check out the Kitchen & Appliances category and I’m sure that you’ll find something that you can use to make delicious things from your fresh produce. Good luck and happy bidding everyone!

Cooking a Winter Stew with DealDash

 

I don’t know about you, but I know that my family eats differently in winter than in summer. Let’s take a peek at a wintery meal we can prepare with help from DealDash .

My family eats a lot of soups and stews during the cold and wintery months. It seems to be a common theme in cooking magazines, as well as with people I know. Not only are they filling, moderately healthy (depending on what you add), they are also something that you can make with just items that you have on hand in the freezer and pantry. That means if it’s cold and snowing outside you won’t have to leave your cozy little nest of a home to go to the supermarket.

One of my favorite kitchen items in the winter is my crock pot/slow cooker. I actually have 3 crock pots of different sizes – a huge one that can accommodate a roast, a medium one that’s great for a stew or for soup, and a smaller one that can be for a gravy or fondue. I get a lot of use out of these in the winter months, if you don’t already have a crock pot (or three!) check them out on DealDash, here.

Hamilton Beach 5-Quart Portable Slow Cooker

If you are just getting started with using a slow cooker, you might be interested in a simple stew recipe:

Simple Beef Stew

Ingredients:

  • 2 pounds beef stew meat, cut into 1 inch cubes
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups beef broth
  • 3 potatoes, diced
  • 4 carrots, sliced
  • 1 stalk celery, chopped

How do you do it? Simple!

  1. Place meat in slow cooker. In a small bowl mix together the flour, salt, and pepper; pour over meat, and stir to coat meat with flour mixture. Stir in the garlic, bay leaf, paprika, Worcestershire sauce, onion, beef broth, potatoes, carrots, and celery.
  2. Cover, and cook on Low setting for 10 to 12 hours, or on High setting for 4 to 6 hours.

That’s it! And really, one of the great things about a stew like this is if you are missing an ingredient, such as the celery or the carrots you can always exclude that item, or even swap it for a different item such as peas. Personally, since I am allergic to fish and seafood I exclude the Worcestershire sauce and add in a splash of soy sauce instead. It’s delicious!

Hamilton Beach 70950 SaladXpress Counter-top Food Processor Electric w/ConesKitchenAid Artisan Stand Mixer, Apple GreenT-Fal Initiatives 18-Piece Nonstick Inside and Out Cookware Set

I hope this article has encouraged you to try to make a simple winter stew with your slow cooker.  If you’re interested in getting some items to help you with cooking at home head on over to DealDash. DealDash has food processors, stand mixers, cookware, and plenty of other items that you can use. Check out the Kitchen & Appliances category and I’m sure that you’ll find something that you can use to make your kitchen better. Good luck and happy bidding everyone!

Lessons on Coffee With DealDash

 

Every age group from teens to seniors love coffee. However, a lot of people go through life not knowing much about it. Let’s change that.

Most people know that coffee is prepared from roasted coffee beans, but do you know how they get the beans in the first place? Coffee beans as you know them actually come from the seeds of berries from the Coffea plant. Coffee plants are cultivated (almost) all over the world, but primarily in the equatorial regions of the Americas, Southeast Asia, India and Africa. You won’t find any coffee plants growing in Antarctica, though,  they need a temperature of about 59 and 75 °F to grow and thrive. The two most commonly grown coffee plants are arabica, which coffee connoisseurs tend to love, and the slightly lower regarded but stronger robusta.

 

You might be wondering how you get the coffee beans from plant seeds. Well, it’s a long time-consuming process starting with the picking of the berries. After the berries have been picked (some places do it by HAND!) then they are sorted by ripeness and color and then the flesh of the berry is removed, usually by machine, then the seeds are fermented to remove the slimy layer of berry flesh still on the seed. After this process is finished, the seeds are washed with fresh water to remove the fermentation residue. Finally, the seeds are dried. After the drying is done the beans are called “green coffee.” The final step before being shipped off to your local supermarket or cafe is roasting the beans. After they have been roasted then they are the nice brown yummy-smelling beans that we are all used to.

There are many different ways to enjoy the coffee beans – espresso, cafe Americano, Turkish, cold brewed, or even the most humble instant coffee. When you think of having a coffee at home most people probably either think of the “regular” coffee maker that’s found in most homes or offices, and coming in a close second would probably be the newer “one cup” coffee makers that use the individually portioned “pods”. No matter which type you prefer you can get the machines themselves and also the re-fills from DealDash. Getting items such as coffee from DealDash makes so much sense – If you don’t win the item and end up having to Buy It Now (BIN), you will get all of your bids back, and a great product that you would have bought anyway.

Mr.Coffee 12-Cup Coffee Maker,Stainless Steel/BlackStarbucks Colombia Ground Coffee, 12 ozKeurig Platinum Mini BrewerKeurig Donut Shop Sweet & Creamy Iced Coffee K-Cups (16-Pack)

 

I hope this article has furthered your knowledge about coffee and how it goes from plant to your cup.  If you’re interested in getting some items to enjoy your coffee at home head on over to DealDash. DealDash has everything you need to have a nice hot cup of coffee at home. Check out the Kitchen & Dining category and I’m sure that you’ll find something that you can use to make your perfect cup of coffee. Good luck and happy bidding everyone!

Baking in Your DealDash Kitchen

DealDash.com

Do you love to bake? No matter if you are a beginner or advanced, DealDash has you covered with things to help you bake.

One of my favorite ways to spend time with family from young to elderly is to bake things together. From birthday cakes to Christmas cookies once you start a baking project with a treasured family member you can’t help but reminisce about birthdays and holidays gone by. Baking by yourself can be fun too, as long as you have the tools that you need. My favorite way to jazz up my kitchen is fun-colored kitchen supplies . There are a few popular brands that make an awesome array of different colored small appliances to appease anyone looking for something a little “different.”

KitchenAid Artisan Series Persimmon 5-Quart Stand MixerKitchenAid Tilt-Head Stand Mixer Raspberry IceKitchenAid Artisan Series 5-Quart Mixer, Cobalt BlueKitchenAid Artisan Series Canopy Green 5 Quart Stand Mixer

If you don’t normally bake (or even cook very much!) the first thing that you probably need to get started is a good set of bake ware. DealDash has quite a few selections for you. The main things that you want to look for in my opinion are to make sure that the bake ware is rated up to the temperatures that you will use, that it’s non-stick, and that it has common sizes that you think that you will use on a regular basis.

BakerEze 6-Piece Non-stick Bakeware SetRachael Ray Bakeware Set - Orange (5 Pc)

If you are really going to get serious about baking, I suggest that you get a scale that you can measure your ingredients with. They are usually called “Digital Kitchen Scales,” and they are actually useful for other things besides baking such as weighing letters and small packages so you don’t have to go to the post office.

Taylor Digital Kitchen ScaleAmerican Weigh Scales Digital 11-lb. Kitchen Food ScaleTaylor Stainless Steel Electronic Kitchen Scale

 

A handy tip that might make your life a little easier as a beginning baker is to remember to bring refrigerated items like butter, eggs, and cream cheese to room temperature before you start to put together your recipes. A good idea is to take your cold ingredients out of the fridge at least a of couple hours before you are planning on baking. If you forgot to take the eggs out, and you need to use them right away, take the chill out by dipping them in a bowl of warm water. For butter, cut into chunks, and at room temperature, it will soften in about 15 minutes.

 

I hope this article has encouraged you to bid on some baking supplies and get started making something delicious. If you’re interested in getting some items to help you with cooking at home head on over to the Kitchen & Dining section on DealDash. DealDash has food processors, stand mixers, cookware, and plenty of other items that you can use.  Good luck and happy bidding everyone!

Fun in the Kitchen

 

Do you love to cook? Well, even if you don’t, here are some ways that you can have fun in the kitchen.

One of my favorite ways to have fun in the kitchen is to have unique kitchen gadgets and fun-colored small appliances. There are a few popular brands that make an awesome array of different colored small appliances to appease anyone looking for something a little “different.”

KitchenAid Artisan Series Persimmon 5-Quart Stand MixerKitchenAid Tilt-Head Stand Mixer Raspberry IceKitchenAid Artisan Series 5-Quart Mixer, Cobalt BlueKitchenAid Artisan Series Canopy Green 5 Quart Stand Mixer

There are also a number of lesser-known brands from other countries such as France and Finland that make really adorable kitchen items that definitely ramp up the fun factor.

Cookut Monkey Trivet Pot Holder - Set of 2Cookut Takkoda Pets Rock® - Set of 6 Dessert Plates Magisso™ - Iconic Stainless Steel Cake Server

 

Another great way to have fun in the kitchen is to get your kids involved! Babies love to sit on the floor while you cook and play with pots and pans, while kids as young as 3 can learn to crack an egg or pour and mix for you. Elementary school-aged children can really be a lot of help to you, with very specific safety instructions and close supervision they can learn how to chop veggies and fruits, measure ingredients, and read to you from a cookbook so you don’t have to keep wiping your hands off before you touch the book. If you still don’t like cooking by the time these trained tiny chefs go to Middle school, well, maybe they can take over the cooking for you!

 

 

 

My last suggestion for you to help you have more fun in the kitchen is to get some gadgets that you don’t really need, but ones that make your life easier. Personally, my favorite kitchen gadget is my stand mixer, which I definitely don’t need, but it comes in handy now and again, and it always looks beautiful sitting on my kitchen counter. My sister is a little more practical, her favorite kitchen gadget is a margarita maker. It gets significantly more use than my stand mixer, and everyone gets excited when she brings it out of the pantry and yells “Margarita Time!!!” If we’re really being honest here, maybe my sister is the one you should be asking for advice on how to have fun in the kitchen!

Hamilton Beach 70950 SaladXpress Counter-top Food Processor Electric w/ConesKeurig 2.0 K300 Coffee Brewing System with CarafeBig Boss Oil-Less FryerMargaritaville Tahiti 72-oz. Frozen Concoction Maker

I hope this article has encouraged you to try some of my strategies for having fun in the kitchen. If you’re interested in getting some items to help you with cooking at home head on over to DealDash. DealDash has food processors, stand mixers, cookware, and plenty of other items that you can use. Check out the Kitchen & Appliances category and I’m sure that you’ll find something that you can use to make your time in the kitchen a little more fun. Good luck and happy bidding everyone!

Living Healthy: Eating Well, Even on a Budget

 

Welcome back to DealDash Blog’s Living Healthy series. Today’s blog is all about sharing ideas of how you can eat healthfully, even when you’re on a budget.

Most people have a basic idea of what it means to be a healthy eater – everyone is familiar with the Food Pyramid from elementary school, right? The problem is, sometimes making healthy food choices can really put a strain on your budget, especially if you are feeding a family of four or even more. Luckily, I have some easy strategies for you to try to incorporate into your daily life.

1 – Meal Planning. Strategy number one is really important to staying on budget – when you plan your meals out ahead of time (I like to do a week’s worth at a time) it allows you to buy healthy food in bulk at your local wholesale club and spread the goodness out over multiple meals. For example, if I were to buy the single mixed-greens bag of salad at the local supermarket it would cost me approximately $3, and last my family of four for just one meal. However, if I plan my meals ahead of time and I know that we are going to have salads three nights in the upcoming week I can buy the large box of mixed-greens at the wholesale club for $6 and have enough salad for all three nights. See? I just saved myself $3 by planning ahead.

Image result for lasagna

2- Home Cooking. Strategy number two is really beneficial for both your health and your wallet. If my family of four decided that we would all like to have lasagna and we went to any of the mid-priced Italian restaurants in my area we would spend approximately $60 (I live right outside of Boston, it might be cheaper near you), and in addition to that the lasagna would most likely be made with lots of oil, white pasta, and full-fat cheese. However, if I were to make the exact same meal at home it costs less than $15, and I am able to use fat-free cheese, whole wheat pasta noodles, and even substitute some of the ricotta for cottage cheese. It tastes absolutely delicious, and it’s very healthy as well. In a quest to get my children to eat more veggies I also add mushrooms, diced tomatoes, and zucchini slices (Shhhhh…Don’t tell!)

3- Farmer’s Markets. Strategy number three may or may not work for you depending on where you live. In my area, there is a farmer’s market going on in my town and every small town around me. When you go to the farmer’s market you are getting delicious fruits and veggies that are extremely fresh because they are grown locally. In addition to that, the prices are definitely better than any supermarket around, especially if there are multiple vendors selling the same fruits and veggies. If you want to make your trip to the farmer’s market even healthier, try walking there! The weather is beautiful in August, and the fresh air is great for your body and mind.

Hamilton Beach 70950 SaladXpress Counter-top Food Processor Electric w/ConesKitchenAid Artisan Stand Mixer, Apple GreenT-Fal Initiatives 18-Piece Nonstick Inside and Out Cookware Set

I hope this article has encouraged you to try some of my strategies for living healthy on a budget. If you’re interested in getting some items to help you with cooking at home head on over to DealDash. DealDash has food processors, stand mixers, cookware, and plenty of other items that you can use. Check out the Kitchen & Appliances category and I’m sure that you’ll find something that you can use to make you and your family a little bit healthier. Good luck and happy bidding everyone!