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Cider or Juice? It’s all APPLES to US!

In North America (the USA and Canada) we have a drink that is much loved called apple cider. Go anywhere else in the world and it will be known as unfiltered/natural apple juice.  Cider is what you get at a pub and goes great with a “ploughman’s lunch”.

It is the beginning of Autumn or Fall. The time when brisk winds begin to blow the leaves once brightly coloured leaves from the trees.  It is also apple picking time in the Northeast.

Cider or cyder, according to Wikipedia, is a fermented alcoholic beverage made from fruit juice, most commonly and traditionally apple juice. Cider varies in alcohol content from 1.2% to 8.5% or more in traditional English ciders. In some regions, such as Germany and United States, cider may be called "apple wine".

In the United States and some parts of Canada, the term "hard cider" usually refers to the alcoholic beverage discussed in this article, while "cider" may refer to non-alcoholic apple cider. When sugar or extra fruit has been added and a secondary fermentation increases the alcoholic strength, a cider is classified as "apple wine".

Within the US, the distinction between apple cider and juice isn't always clear.

When most of us think of apple cider, we probably picture an opaque, highly perishable apple drink available at farm stands and markets in the autumn. It is juice, but unfiltered and usually unpasteurized. Unpasteurized apple cider has naturally occurring yeasts that can cause fermentation, making the drink slightly fizzy and alcoholic over time.

Some states spell out a distinct difference between apple cider and juice. In Massachusetts the Department of Agriculture states that "Fresh cider is raw apple juice that has not undergone a filtration process to remove coarse particles of pulp or sediment .... Apple juice is juice that has been filtered to remove solids and pasteurized so that it will stay fresh longer."

Throughout the UK, Europe and beyond, apple beverages that are not alcoholic are referred to as “juice”.

Apples it seems have been around for a long time.  History shows that apple trees existed along the Nile River as early as 1300 BC, but whether or not a drink was ever produced from the fruit is unclear.

The Romans arrived in England in 55 BC.  It is reported that they found the local Kentish villagers drinking a delicious cider-like beverage made from apples. According to records, Julius Caesar was a big fan and embraced the pleasant pursuit with enthusiasm. It is unclear how long the locals had been making this apple drink prior to the arrival of the Romans.

By the ninth century, cider  was a common drink throughout Europe and is even a reference made by Charlemagne confirms its popularity. After the Norman Conquest of 1066, cider consumption became widespread in England and orchards were established specifically to produce cider apples. During medieval times, cider making was an important industry. Monasteries were suppliers of vast quantities of their strong, spiced cider to the public. Farm laborers received a cider allowance as part of their wages, and the quantity increased during haymaking. English cider making peaked around the mid seventeenth century, when almost every farm had its own cider orchard and press. Cider regained its popularity during the twentieth century, but demand was largely for the mass-produced variety. Only in recent years has traditional cider making finally triumphed with micro-breweries beginning to once again pop up. Traditional cider making is experiencing a major resurgence in both America and Europe.

American history is a bit different.  It was of course the English settlers who introduced cider by bringing the seeds for cultivating cider apples. During the colonial period, grains did not thrive well and were costly to import. Apple orchards on the other hand were plentiful, making apples cheap and easily obtainable. As a result, hard cider quickly became one of the colony’s most popular beverages. Consumption of cider increased steadily during the eighteenth century, due in part to the efforts of the legendary Johnny Appleseed, who planted many apple trees in the Midwest.

A series of events led to cider''s fall in popularity. The introduction of German beer with its faster fermentation process quickly made beer popular because German immigrants were able to set up large breweries for producing great quantities of beer. The production of apple cider was still limited to small farms. Then came the  religion based Temperance movement which cost many church-going/God fearing farmers the libation. Many even went as far as to chop down their apple trees. This was followed by Prohibition, and pretty much destroyed the market for apple cider.

Today, with the growing popularity of microbreweries, the tide has turned.


Rad to the Bone: Halloween Bread-Bone Sticks


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We realize many of you do not make your own bread. So, this is a great recipe for those non-bread-makers at home.

Olive Garden may have unlimited breadsticks, but with this recipe you'll have a big batch of Bone-Sticks, which is way cooler for Halloween. With some bloody red marinara dipping sauce, it's a haunted snack everyone will love.

INGREDIENTS
1 can refrigerated breadsticks (usually contains 12)
Olive oil
Coarse sea salt

DIRECTIONS
Preheat oven to 375. Grease two baking sheets.

Remove breadsticks from can, unroll and allow to warm to room temperature, six on each sheet. Gently stretch each breadstick to make it longer and skinnier. Using a knife, make a 1 inch cut into each end of breadstick and separate so it looks like a fish tail. 

Then, roll each piece to the outside and back to the breadstick in a spiral. Repeat with other side and then other end.

Once you have repeated this process with each breadstick, brush or spray each with olive oil and sprinkle on coarse sea salt.

Bake for 8-10 until golden brown on the bottom. Remove from baking sheets, arrange on platter and serve.

Makes: 12


Benefits of Fish

Researchers worldwide have discovered that eating fish regularly - one or two servings weekly - may reduce the risk of diseases ranging from childhood asthma to prostate cancer. 

Fish is low in fat, high in protein and an excellent source of omega 3 fatty acids. 

Regular consumption of fish can reduce the risk of various diseases and disorders. Selected research findings indicate the following:

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Asthma

 - children who eat fish may be less likely to develop asthma.

Brain and eyes

 - fish rich in omega 3 fatty acids can contribute to the health of brain tissue and the retina (the light sensitive tissue lining the inner surface of the eye).

Cancer

 - the omega 3 fatty acids in fish may reduce the risk of many types of cancers by 30 to 50 per cent, especially of the oral cavity, oesophagus, colon, breast, ovary and prostate.

Cardiovascular disease

 - eating fish every week reduces the risk of heart disease and stroke by reducing blood clots and inflammation, improving blood vessel elasticity, lowering blood pressure, lowering blood fats and boosting 'good' cholesterol.

Dementia

 - elderly people who eat fish or seafood at least once a week may have a lower risk of developing dementia, including Alzheimer's disease.

Depression

 - people who regularly eat fish have a lower incidence of depression (depression is linked to low levels of omega 3 fatty acids in the brain).

Diabetes 

- fish may help people with diabetes manage their blood sugar levels.

Eyesight 

- breastfed babies of mothers who eat fish have better eyesight, perhaps due to the omega 3 fatty acids transmitted in breast milk.

Inflammatory conditions

 - regular fish consumption may relieve the symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis, psoriasis and autoimmune disease.

Prematurity

 - eating fish during pregnancy may help reduce the risk of delivering a premature baby.

Healthy ways to enjoy fish include baked, poached, grilled and steamed forms.


Article found at: Advantages of Eating Fish Foods - Health Benefits | Medindia http://www.medindia.net/patients/patientinfo/fishfood.htm#ixzz2uGnpevXt

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