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Posted by on Jul 30, 2015 in Uncategorized |

Want To Become A Professional Brewery? Do A Dry Run At Home First

Are you making beer at home as a hobby but want to break into the business? Nano-breweries and micro-breweries are growing in popularity as small brewers seek the joy of sharing their creations with a small, local clientele. 

Transitioning from hobbyist to small business can be a lot of work, and it’s important not to jump in before you’re ready. One solution is to create your own backyard bar where you can showcase your brews to friends and family while working out the logistics of shifting to a professional operation.  

Here are three steps to using a backyard bar to get yourself ready to become a nano-brewery.

Work With Your Space

First and foremost, your bar should be part of your home or yard decor and should fit in with what already exists. If you’re converting a basement or unused room inside the home, you’re probably able to decorate it any way you want (or any way your partner or spouse agrees to!). However, if you’re redesigning an outdoor area, be sure it fits in with the landscaping and any theme to your backyard decorations. If you have a pool, consider making a swim-up bar. If you already have an outdoor kitchen, just extend the counters and seating area with complementary materials and styles. Work with what you have rather than fighting it. 

One of the most popular and easiest ways to create your backyard bar is with a pub shed. A pub shed is simply a shed of any style or size according to your needs that is converted into a small pub. If it’s a large shed, you can place a bar, liquor storage and some seating inside it. If it’s a small shed, cut out an oversize window on one side and place the barstools outside facing in. 

Pick a Theme

Once you know what space you have to work with, look for an appropriate theme to highlight your beers. Are you looking for a fun, rebellious vibe? An homage to summer evenings or beach fun? Or a serious, traditional feeling? Do your brews follow the traditions of a certain region or country, such as Germany, Belgium or Ireland? Choosing a theme for your home bar will help you nail down a theme or style for your future company, tap rooms and advertising. Play with ideas here in your own space and at your leisure. Don’t be afraid to experiment with decorations, logos and furnishings until you find something that speaks to you. 

Build Relationships

This is a good time to start making friends and allies within the industry. While you may not need a lot of bar supplies right now, you will need them later. So check out suppliers and start finding your favorite equipment and makers. As you figure out your theme and decorative style, start purchasing necessary equipment now from places like Louis Wohl & Sons Inc in order to hit the ground running when you actually open your business.

Doing a test run at home before investing time and money into a brewing business can save you headaches and costs later. It’s a great way to have fun while learning the ropes in a stress-free environment. 

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Posted by on Jun 16, 2015 in Uncategorized |

When There’s No Heat In The Kitchen: Troubleshooting A Faulty Stove Burner

Electric stoves are a great choice for kitchens where you don’t want the risk of gas lines. Like any other kitchen appliance, though, electric stoves are subject to malfunctions. One of the most common issues that you’ll find in electric stoves is a complete lack of heat in a burner. If your electric stove burner isn’t heating up, here are a few tips to help you isolate the problem and correct it.

Secure the Burner

One of the most common reasons a burner won’t heat up is because the connections are loose in the terminal. Turn the burner off so you don’t risk burning yourself, then grasp the edge of the burner and wiggle it back and forth a little bit while pushing it in toward the terminal connector. If the burner itself is loose, this will fix the problem. Turn the control back on and see if the burner heats up.

Check the Element

If the problem isn’t a loose connection, you’ll want to test the burner itself. Remove the burner from the terminal, then replace it with a burner of similar size from another part of the stove. Turn on the control knob. If the replacement burner heats up, the problem is with the burner itself, and it needs to be replaced.

Inspect the Terminals and Connector

The metal loops at the end of the burner are the terminals. When they make contact with the connector, they conduct electricity to the burner. If the terminals are visibly dirty, corroded or bent, you’ll need to fix them. A scratch-free scrub pad will clean dirt and rust from the terminal surfaces. You may be able to bend them with a sturdy pair of pliers if they are not straight.

If, on the other hand, those terminals look burnt, that’s a sign that you need to replace the receptacle housing the power connector. Lift the top of the stove and follow the wires from the burner and connector to the harness plug where you can unplug the wires and remove the receptacle. Then, replace it with a new one and test the burner again.

As you can see, most of the common causes of burner malfunction are easy to address on your own. If you’ve tried these steps to no avail, however, it’s time to call a stove repair technician. He or she can troubleshoot the problem more extensively and help you find the parts you need to get heat flowing to the burner again.

For more information, contact K & D Factory Service Inc. or a similar company.

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Posted by on May 14, 2015 in Uncategorized |

Two Great Wine Recipies

Wine is an incredibly sophisticated beverage that anyone can enjoy, whether they are a teetotaler or not. Because of this, wine is a great gift for anybody because it is such a versatile drink.

When you give the bottle of wine to its recipient, put it in a nice wine gift bag and tie one of these recipes to the top to finish off a great gift.

These are two great recipes that are great for any occasion, even if the person you are giving the wine to doesn’t drink:

Cabernet Strip Steaks

  • 1/2 cup of cabernet wine
  • 1/4 cup of soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup of extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon of fresh rosemary
  • 1 teaspoon of fresh thyme
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 1 teaspoon of fresh ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon of kosher salt
  • 2 New York Strip steaks, 1 1/2 inches thick

Create the marinade by mixing together the wine, soy sauce, rosemary, thyme, olive oil, garlic, pepper, and salt. Place the steaks inside the marinade and seal in an airtight plastic bag. Put it in the refrigerator and allow it to marinate for 2 hours. 

Preheat your grill to 500 degrees. Take the steaks out of the marinade and place on the grill. Cook for 5 minutes on each side. Take the steaks off the grill and let them sit under aluminum foil for an additional 5 minutes. Serve immediately.

Ice Cream with Sauvignon sauce

  • 2 cups of Sauvignon Blanc wine
  • 1 cup of triple sec
  • 8 egg yolks
  • 3/4 cup of powdered sugar
  • 1/4 cup of blueberries
  • 1/2 cup of strawberries
  • 1/4 cup of raspberries
  • 2 cups of vanilla bean ice cream
  • 1 cup of heavy whipping cream
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla
  • A dash of cinnamon

Mix together the wine, triple sec, egg yolks, and 1/2 cup of powdered sugar. Using a double boiler to keep the sauce from scalding, cook on a stovetop for 25 minutes at 350 degrees while stirring constantly.

Chill a metal bowl for 30 minutes in a freezer. Remove from the freezer and combine the heavy whipping cream, 1/4 cup of powdered sugar, and vanilla and mix on high with an electric hand mixer until stiff peaks form, approximately 2 minutes.

Once the sauce is cooled and the whipped cream is made, place half of the ice cream, strawberries, blueberries, and raspberries in a bowl. Drizzle a generous portion of the sauce on each bowl. Finish it off with whipped cream and a dusting of powdered sugar and cinnamon and serve.

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Posted by on Mar 30, 2015 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

The Two Most Important Details Of Catering A Banquet

Whether you’ve been a guest lucky enough to be invited to a banquet or you’ve served on a catering staff in your past, one thing is certain to ring true with you: the amount and variation of delicious food is in no short supply when the banquet is served. When you’re simply a guest at a wedding or other special occasion, it can be easy to overlook the details and preparation that have led to that moment. While it may seem like an easy task to prepare and deliver the meal, the catering team is focused on making the entire experience unforgettable in a wide range of ways. If you’re interested in getting a look behind the scenes of what it takes to cater a banquet, take a look at some of the most important details (and look for them at the next banquet you attend):

Presentation is Key

Any good caterer understands that while great tasting food is the ultimate goal, the way that the food is presented comes in close second in terms of importance. While there are no specific rules regarding how to best present food during a banquet, some of these tips come in very handy:

  • Keeping things in groups (such as appetizer foods and salads first, then sides, and finally main courses) on the serving table can help with the general flow of the event. While the guest realizes it or not, setting up these kinds of seemingly minor details can give the food line a positive visual appeal.
  • Making sure that you have a big enough table to comfortably accommodate all of the plates and food you’ll be serving is vital. Packing too many plates and creating a crowded space looks visually uncomfortable, while leaving enough space will allow guests to set their plate down on the table while dishing out food.
  • By creating enough space on either side of the table as well as mirroring the plates to create two lines, guests can get to their meal quicker and more efficiently.

Choosing the Right Food

When it comes down to it, the most important part of a banquet is the taste of the food. By using certain universal foods such as fried chicken, most guests will be pleased with the food selection right off the bat. Staying away from spicy or unique (non-traditional) foods is important, as many guests may have an aversion to those kinds of meals. Additionally, choosing to include a few extra main course options (such as a vegetarian entree or another kind of meat) will help to ensure that every guest leaves satisfied– regardless of their food preferences.

For more information, contact Mascaro’s Catering or a similar company.

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Posted by on Feb 20, 2015 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

Keto-Friendly, Low-Carb Asian Foods

The ketogenic low-carb diet is a great way to lose weight, but it can also be extremely limiting in what you can eat. Meals that are high in carbohydrates, like many Asian foods, are generally off-limits since you could end up surpassing your daily carb limit in just one meal. However, if you’re fond of Asian meals, you’ll be happy to know that the three in this guide are a great choice for keto. 

Bok Choy

Bok choy, which is commonly used in Chinese cooking, is an extremely low-carb vegetable that’s also full of healthy nutrients like vitamin A and vitamin C. One cup of bok choy has just 3.1 carbs, and only 1.4 net carbs.

Unlike other diets, keto is anything but low-fat, so you can have a lot of fun with your bok choy. Try cooking it with bacon and onions to mix an umami flavor with the slight bitterness of bok choy. Traditional Chinese recipes using soy sauce, salt, ginger, and spices will keep your carb count down while providing a delicious flavor, too. 


Edamame is a popular snack to munch while you’re waiting for your Japanese meal to arrive, or you can just eat it by itself. Edamame has 8 net carbs per cup, which makes it an acceptable treat to munch on. It pairs well with salt and soy sauce, which can help you to get your salty snack fix in a healthy way: edamame is packed full of nutrients, including potassium, magnesium, iron, and vitamin C. It’s also an excellent source of protein, which can be helpful if you’re attempting a vegetarian keto diet.  

Edamame is also packed with phytoestrogens, which have been found to reduce cholesterol, ease hot flashes, and can even reduce your risk of cancer. It also contains omega-3 fatty acids, which may help to reduce your risk of cardiovascular disease.

Cauliflower Rice

Sometimes staying on the keto diet and satisfying your carb cravings requires a little creative thinking. If you’re feeling desperate for rice to go with your main courses, try thinking outside the box with cauliflower.

Cauliflower can be used to create a keto-friendly version of rice that tastes almost exactly like the same thing and has a very similar texture, too. With just 2 net carbs and 77% of your daily allotment of vitamin C per cup of cauliflower, this is a substitute you can have big portions of and not feel guilty about.

Keto can help you to lose weight, but part of staying on any diet is finding healthy foods to replace unhealthy things that you’re craving. The next time you find yourself craving Asian cuisine, try these low-carb options instead of going off your diet. Talk to your local Asian food experts, like S K Produce Co, for more information.

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