Tuesday, December 31, 2013
Extra Virgin Olive Oil Types: Varieties, Tastes, Acidity and Peroxides
By [http://ezinearticles.com/?expert=Manuel_Gallego]Manuel Gallego
Between high quality extra virgin olive oils, there are many different products which may vary depending on taste, variety, type, acidity and peroxide presence.
Extra virgin olive oil types: Coupage and Monovarietal
The first difference between extra virgin olive oils is related to the type of oil. Coupage is a kind of oil elaborated with the juice of different kind of olives. This mixing of olives is done in order to obtain a special liquid with a very special taste. This olive oil is very exclusive and attractive for consumers and is considered pure traditional craftwork.
The monovarietal oil is a juice carefully obtained from the same kind of olive. It is also very exclusive, for the discerning palate.
Extra virgin olive oil types - Attributes: Color
The color of olive oil can vary between gold and green. These colors are determined by the quantity of chlorophyll and carotene in oil. These color variations do not compromise the quality of olive oil.
Extra virgin olive oil types - Attributes: Taste
The tastes of extra virgin olive oils are the following ones:
. Fruity: This taste and aroma remind us of healthy and fresh olives. The oils with these tastes are made with very green olives.
. Grass: Oils with this taste remind us of olive leaves and grass.
. Apple: Oils with this taste remind us of apples.
. Almonds: It is commonly associated with sweet oils. Oils with this taste and aroma remind us of dried fruits. Note that this taste can be confusing. Rancid oils may taste similarly.
. Bitter: Typical taste of oils extracted from very green olives.
. Hot: Spicy taste. These oils are produced from olives picked at the beginning of the season.
. Astringent: Sensation of some oils in our mouths. Note that it can be confusing. Mold may taste similarly.
. Sweet: Very nice taste. It does not leave any hot, bitter taste and any astringent sensation.
It is also possible to find some varieties of olives that would give different tastes and varieties in olives oils:
Extra virgin olive oil types - Varieties of fruits
. Arbequina: This extra virgin olive oil variety comes from a very special olive fruit called Arbequina. This small fruit is very resistant to climate changes and is very well known by its high quality. Its juices are spicy and slightly greasy.
. Alfafarenca: This olive variety is of great resistance and of late maturity. Its oil is of medium quality, but very well appreciated. Its bitter and spicy taste and its slightly golden colour are their symbols of identity.
. Blanqueta: The nearly white color is very common in this variety of fruit. They are picked manually and during the juice extraction, no chemical product is used. The taste of oil is fruity and bitter, very aromatic and with a high percentage of linoleic acid.
. Frantoio: The oil produced by this variety of fruit is highly appreciated because of its fruity taste and its great conservation characteristics. It is sweet, creamy and soft, very aromatic and very nice. Very similar to arbequina.
. Genovesa: This variety of olive is highly appreciated by its productivity. The fruit is quite big, thick and produces stable oil of high quality.
. Hojiblanca: Its oil is highly recommended because of its composition. Very high percentage of fatty acids. Their tastes are very different; but, in general, fruity, slightly bitter and spicy.
. Picual: The olive oil of this fruit is of medium quality, with an excellent content in oleic acid and with a bitter and wood taste. Very nice.
. Picudo: The great emblematic olive of C�rdoba (Spain). This variety produces the oil with Guarantee of Origin and Quality of Baena and Priego de C�rdoba. This excellent extra virgin olive oil has an unbeatable taste, very soft, not hard. Its taste is quite fruity and reminds us of very exotic fruits, apples and almonds. This oil is very steady, but fragile to oxidation.
. Manzanilla: An oil very difficult to find. Very stable liquid, with shape and fruity and bitter taste.
. Lech�n: A variety that produces an oil with vegetable and almond taste. Medium bitter taste. Very difficult to find as monovarietal.
. Verdial: Fruity oil with a sweet taste. Very nice, with no bitter taste. Very difficult to find as monovarietal. It is necessary to protect this oil from light and heat.
. Empeltre: Very soft and delicate oil with an almond taste. No bitter and hot taste. Very nice in the mouth.
. Cornicabra: Fruity and very aromatic oils. Slightly bitter and hot. Very stable.
There are other oil varieties such as: Castellana or Verdeja, Farga, Serrana de Espad�n, Morruda, Grosal, Changlot Real, Rojal, Canetera, Nana, Cuquillo, Sollana, Callosina, Llumeta, Millarenca, Borriolenca, Redondilla or Redondal, Macho or Machona, Negral, Royal or Royuelo, Arroniz, Cornezuelo, Jabata, Gordalilla de Archidona, Romerilla, Chor�a, Tempranilla, Ocal, Campanil, Chorruo, Lucio, Loaime, Gordal de Granada, Negrillo de Iznalloz, Escarabajuelo, Nevadillo Negro, Carrasque�o, Picodo, Lucio or More�o, Nevadillo de Alhama de Granada, Royal de Ja�n, Manzanillo de Ja�n and Morrut.
Extra virgin olive oil types - Acidity, peroxides and polyphenols
Acidity and peroxide percentage can help us to know if the olive oil in question is of high quality or if its production conditions and fruit quality have been adequate. The lower grade of acidity and the lower percentage of peroxides in composition are the best for our olive oil.
Acidity comes from a chemical breakdown of triglycerides that is produced by a process known as hydrolysis or lipolysis. This breakdown leaves free fatty acids that determine acidity level. When the oil is extracted carelessly from poor quality olives and the meteorology has not been good, acidity levels will be higher because these anomalies favored the breakdown process. Thus, the percentage of free fatty acids will be very high, the acidity too and the quality of olive, poor.
High percentage of peroxides in the composition of extra virgin olive oil indicates that a process of oxidation took place. The oxidation occurs when oil gets in contact with air. It may possible that oxidation occurs when oil gets in contact with constant natural or artificial lighting as well. The consequences are very harmful. The peroxides destroy the aroma and taste of the oil as well as its beneficial properties for health.
Polyphenols are natural antioxidants that contribute to the bitter taste in oils, astringency and resistance to oxidation. These polyphenols are beneficial to our body. They reduce cholesterol, regulate blood pressure and decrease coronary risks.
The quantity of polyphenols in oil is determined by several facts: oil variety, olive time picking, altitude, irrigation, extraction methods and storage.
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Article Source: [http://EzineArticles.com/?Extra-Virgin-Olive-Oil-Types:-Varieties,-Tastes,-Acidity-and-Peroxides&id=7453252] Extra Virgin Olive Oil Types: Varieties, Tastes, Acidity and Peroxides
Monday, December 30, 2013
How to Make Delicious, Inexpensive Soft Pretzels at Home
By [http://ezinearticles.com/?expert=Chris_Rawstern]Chris Rawstern
While making soft pretzels seems like a lot of steps, they are really simple to make. It takes about 2 hours from start to finish, and once baked, the reason for these steps is apparent. A very short rising time makes quick work of the dough. A quick boil in a pot of water gives them the chewy exterior, and the egg wash gives them the shine. It is my belief that using a beer in the batter and boiling water enhances the yeasty flavor, but it is completely a matter of choice.
Another factor to take into consideration is the size of the pretzel. The ones sold in most places are just huge. In this day and age, that size is far too large for most people in one sitting. If that size is of interest, you may choose to make the recipe into only about 6 pretzels. I believe making them into 8 or 10 is the perfect size. The baking time may need adjusting, should you use the larger size.
Soft Pretzels at Home
4 - 4 1/2 cups bread flour
2 packets of instant or quick rise yeast
1 cup water plus 1/2 cup beer, OR use 1 1/2 cups water
3 tablespoons sugar
2 1/2 teaspoons salt
7 cups water plus 1 cup beer, OR use 8 cups water
1/2 cup baking soda
1 egg yolk
1 tablespoon water
1 teaspoon agave syrup
Coarse salt for sprinkling
In a mixer bowl, combine 1 1/2 cups of the flour with the yeast. Heat to lukewarm the 1 cup water and 1/2 cup of beer, or all water as desired, along with the 3 tablespoons sugar and the salt. Ensure that the liquid is just warm to the finger and not too hot. Add the liquid to the mixing bowl and starting on low to combine the ingredients. Then increase speed and beat well for about 3 minutes. If your mixer is heavy duty and can knead a very stiff dough, switch to a dough hook and add in 2 1/2 to 3 cups more flour. If you do not have a heavy duty mixer, take the bowl and using hands, incorporate the flour to make a stiff dough. Knead for 8 to 10 minutes. Allow to rest for 20 minutes, while preparing the rest of the ingredients.
In a large soup pot, place the 7 cups water and 1 cup beer or just use 8 cups water. Add 1/2 cup baking soda to the water. If beer is in the mixture, expect the liquid to foam up significantly. Bring this mixture to a simmer.
Mix together in a small bowl the egg yolk, tablespoon of water and the agave syrup. If agave syrup is not available, an unflavored corn syrup could be used. Combine well and set aside. Have a pastry brush handy. Prepare two large baking sheets by lining them with parchment. Spray the parchment with cooking spray. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
Turn the dough out onto a flat surface. You may not need any flour on the surface if the dough is quite stiff. Divide the dough into 8 to 10 pieces. Each piece should be rolled into a rope about 24 inches long. Make the rope into a U shape, then bring down and cross the ends to make the pretzel shape. Pinch together the points where the dough intersects. Place 1 or 2 of the pretzels into the pot of simmering liquid. Time for 1 minute, then flip over and time for 1 minute more. Drain well on paper toweling and place them onto the baking sheets. Repeat with all the shaped pretzels.
Brush the boiled pretzels with the egg wash and then sprinkle on the coarse salt. Bake the pretzels for 18 to 20 minutes, until a nice golden brown. Makes 8 to 10 medium sized soft pretzels.
Read the instructions carefully and have everything prepared and handy and you will have wonderful, hot and chewy pretzels in about 2 hours.
Thank you for taking the time to read my article. I hope it was informative and helped you along your own culinary journey.
My passion is to teach people how to create a harmony of flavors with their cooking and help pass along my love and joy of food. I would love to hear from you! Join my "e-family" and share recipes, stories and good times in the kitchen. Visit my Web site http://www.aharmonyofflavors.com my Blog at http://www.aharmonyofflavors.blogspot.com my Marketplace at or join me on Facebook. Let me know, and I will send you a copy of my monthly news letter full of recipes the latest tips.
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Top 10 Uses of Garlic
By [http://ezinearticles.com/?expert=Angelica_Tara]Angelica Tara
Just like people, vegetables too have the effect of attraction or repulsion in us - till we find out their uses that changes our perception about them. The pungent smelling garlic is no exception. The strong taste and the ghastly smell is a definite put-off but once you come to know its uses; varied uses; you'll start thinking that garlic is not such a bad guy after all.
Garlic or Allium Sativum belongs to the onion and leek family. The active compound in garlic is Allicin that is released when you chop garlic. Did you know that garlic was rarely used in English cuisine although in the Mediterranean side it was quite popular even amongst the ancient Greeks and Egyptians?
Health & Beauty
This is a popular use of garlic that you have probably heard of umpteen times before. Rubbing a raw garlic clove helps you bid adieu of pesky acne. It has blood cleansing properties, keeps digestive tract healthy and is an effective antibiotic too. Garlic prevents cancer, keeps cold at bay, helps keeping a healthy heart and is good for the liver. Garlic works on itchy skin and fungal infections as well.
Mosquitoes and Fleas
You can put garlic cloves at your bedside or rub their juice on your skin to repel mosquitoes. Ticks and fleas also run away from garlic so you can rub garlic juice on your pets as well. If you don't want your pet to sport that foul smell you can ensure that you include small amount of garlic in your pets' diet.
Garlic also makes good green pesticide. It's eco friendly and quite effective too for warding off whiteflies, cabbage loopers and other irritating pests. All you have to do is to mix garlic with pepper and soap to protect your veggies.
Mix chopped garlic with vinegar and lemon juice for an effective disinfectant or cleaner.
You can try this one next time you go fishing. Coat those marshmallows liberally with crushed garlic. Apparently this makes fishing easier.
Garlic works on paper and even glass. You can use the juice as glue.
Just like cardamom, garlic too is an aphrodisiac. Such a difference between the two! Garlic helps blood circulation and hence the effect, so they say. If garlic breath worries you then you can drink some lemon juice to cure it.
You can use garlic salt to thaw ice from your passages or roadsides in winters. In fact, in 2008; in Ankeny, Iowa, garlic salt donated by spice producer Tone Brothers Inc. was used to melt snow and ice in the Des Moines suburb.
Cut a piece of garlic and put it on the splinter. The splinter will come out on its own but it will take a few hours.
Warding Off Evil Spirits
Garlic is supposed to defend you from evil spirits and even vampires. Forget about garlic juice, some people hang a garland of garlic on their windows to protect them from demons.
With so many benefits, don't overdo the garlic in your diet. Take it in moderation and enjoy this versatile medicinal plant.
Article Source: [http://EzineArticles.com/?Top-10-Uses-of-Garlic&id=7448050] Top 10 Uses of Garlic
Sunday, December 29, 2013
Popcorn Facts - Interesting Things You Should Know About Popcorn
By [http://ezinearticles.com/?expert=Alphina_J_Francis]Alphina J Francis
When people eat popcorn, most of them hardly think about the history of popcorn, or anything else about the snack. Most of the times, all that popcorn eaters think of is how sweet it tastes, and how interesting the movie is likely to be, since popcorn has its place as the official movie snack.
There are several facts about popcorn that an individual ought to know, even if it is just for the sake of curiosity. information that is related to the health benefits of the snack, the origin of the popcorn machine, and why the word "pop" is used to refer to these snacks.
Here are a few facts:
Zea mays, is the scientific name of the corn that produces popcorn and from the corn family, it is the only one that pops.
Many people have enjoyed it over the past years. Popped kernels were discovered in 1948 around the New Mexican caves. 'Spinsters' is the name given to kernels that can not pop, and the reason they cannot pop is that they lack enough moisture to facilitate an explosion and their outer coating gets destroyed, thus allowing steam to escape gradually instead of popping. In addition, popcorn usually produces a small percentage of spinsters.
America is the largest popcorn consumer. Americans take in 17 billion popped popcorn quarts annually. This is enough popcorn to fill the Empire State Building 18 times.
Popped popcorn originates from two shapes- the mushroom and snowflake. Some people prefer snowflake due to its big size, while others choose mushroom since it will not crumble.
When you look at the world records, the globe's popcorn ball measures a diameter of about 12 feet, and needed 2000 pounds of corn, 400 water-containers of a gallon each, corn syrup of about 280 gallons and 40000 sugar pounds to create.
Popcorn is a high fiber snack, with calories, glucose, sodium and fat in small quantities. During its preparation, this is when oil is added, while sugar, butter and salt are just added as toppings.
In the past, some American tribes used to add flavor to popcorn using spices and dried herbs. They also made beer and soup from popcorn. Chili was also an important ingredient in making popcorn.
Nebraska is America's highest popcorn producing state. It realizes a minimum of about a quarter of America's popcorn production annually. This State produces about 250 million pounds of popcorn per year.
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Delectable Baja Flavors: Varieties and Variations Of Northern Mexican Cuisine
By [http://ezinearticles.com/?expert=Mo_Maya]Mo Maya
When I first considered moving to Mexico, my ignorance had me convinced that its food would be the hardest thing for me to tolerate. I would soon joke about my initial ignorance as I dined on delicious soups, mouthwatering mole dishes, fresh-caught fish, local poultry and beef as well as my daily bag of fresh, varied fruits and vegetables. Completed with a wheel of local farm cheese and a small bottle of crema (sour cream), meals were healthy and delicious. Having lived in Mexico on and off for 8 years, I have only gotten food poisoning once: I ate questionable food at a Chinese Restaurant in Guadalajara and should have known better.
Though eating out is fantastically diverse in Los Cabos, the abundance of fresh food in Baja California should encourage travelers to spend at least one day trying its delicacies, even if it means staying at home to cook. Most expatriates agree that one of their favorite facts about food-shopping in Mexico is this: It is easier and cheaper to eat fresh & local food than to dine on imported, canned, or processed food in Mexico. This encourages the freshness of Baja fare; Dining out is reliably fresh, and home cooking generally involves a bounty of unusual fruits and familiar vegetables that might have cost triple in the United States or Canada.
The Sea Of Cortez is one of the most ecologically diverse bodies of water in the world, and the Pacific Ocean isn't far behind with its edible inhabitants. Suffice it to say, fish-lovers worship Baja's amazing aquatic variety. Abalone and Anchovies are both nutritious and plentiful in Baja and several varieties of clams are found in Sea of Cortez and Pacific Coasts. Conger Eel and Squid are caught and sold fresh in Baja California Sur. Albacore, Yellowfin, Blackfin, Bigeye, Pacific and Northern Bluefin Tuna can be found off Baja coasts. Cod is available fresh and from fishmongers, but most is exported to other countries. Barrilete Negro (or Black Skipjack Tuna) and Bonito are other fish similar to tuna fresh-caught in Baja California. Scallops, Shrimp and Crab are also readily available in Baja California from Los Cabos to Tijuana. Corvina, Dorado, Red Snapper and Jack Fish are delicious additions to Baja's fresh catches.
The pastured eggs and free-range chickens many pay dearly to procure in the United States are plentiful in Baja. It is quite easy to find a small, family chicken farm in every village in Baja California Sur, and in the larger cities, an egg-lover's choices for procuring fresh fowl are limitless. And the small farms produce pastured eggs that are not only rich in vitamins, minerals and omega 3s, but also delicious and cheap. Fresh Bacon is available at supermarkets in Los Cabos, and small, local butchers offer excellent, fresh pork and beef as well as Birria [goat], Arrachera, which is skirt steak marinated in lime with chiles, garlic, onion, is one of the ultimate treats for any carnivorous type. The secret to Arrachera is its marinade: The citrus marinade tenderizes a once-tough skirt steak with mouthwatering voracity. Known as one of the most flavorful [and cheap] cuts of beef, the Arrachera marinade will turn this generally chewy belly-cut into the melts-like-butter goodness many find fairly addicting. This excellent dish is known nationally, and is as delicious on Baja as the mainland. Delicious rotisserie chicken is available every few blocks in most towns, and the ubiquitous fish taco stands pepper the whole of Baja California Sur.
Baja California boasts a varied selection of fantastically familiar and wild, wonderful fruits and vegetables. Tomatillos are a staple of Mexican cuisine, and they resemble tart, green tomatoes with an exceptionally fresh flavor and are as excellent in a fresh salsa verde as they are cooked in stews and sauces. Tomatoes are fresh, ripe and locally grown. Spinach is readily available and freshest in the cooler winter months. A Chayote Squash has a sweet and delicate meat behind its spiny exterior. Despite its formidable appearance, this squash is excellent and has a delightful, delicate flavor. Avocados, of course, are everywhere. Many varieties of Lettuces & Greens, Herbs, Cabbages and Squash Blossoms are common in findings in Mexican markets, as are the pads and fruits of the Nopal Cactus. Excellent both raw in juices and cooked, the Nopal cactus pads are exotic and healthy treats. Chiles in just about every range of picante are available everywhere. Citrus fruits, particularly limes, grapefruit and several kinds of oranges are delicious and sweet. Dates, Coconuts, Bananas, Plantains, Mangos, Papaya, and Melons are readily available at small and large vegetable markets. These are only some of the fruits and vegetables travelers may find in many of the restaurants and groceries in Baja California Sur.
Freshly-made Crema, or sour cream is just one of the delicious dairy products that has become a remarkably unctuous staple of Mexican cuisine. Creamy, delicious milk and farm-cheeses are some of Mexico's most delectable treats and each tastes more flavorful than many can imagine. Having never enjoyed a huge amount of dairy products North of the Border, many tourists enjoy the fresh goat-and-cow creations that are readliy found in Mexico. Supermarkets and Restaurants in Baja California also have a wide variety of fresh cheeses and creams if visitors don't care to dairy-hunt while exploring Baja.
Copyright (c) 2013 Baja Atlas
Mo Maya has been living in, traveling around, writing about and drooling over Mexico for the past 8 years. She is the head writer for Baja Atlas. For useful [http://www.bajaatlas.com/words]news about Baja California Sur or to view beautiful Baja beaches, please visit http://www.bajaatlas.com
Article Source: [http://EzineArticles.com/?Delectable-Baja-Flavors:-Varieties-and-Variations-Of-Northern-Mexican-Cuisine&id=7554770] Delectable Baja Flavors: Varieties and Variations Of Northern Mexican Cuisine
An Overview Of Chiles From New Mexico
By [http://ezinearticles.com/?expert=Norman_M._Carter]Norman M. Carter
You can find that chile peppers grow all over New Mexico, but this primary source of chile peppers originates in the southern New Mexico area. Hatch, New Mexico has been named the "chile capital of the world". Chiles have been found in American territories tracing 6,000 years back. There is some discrepancy about how the green chile pepper made it's way to New Mexico, it appears the Pueblo Indians that were native to the area where cooking with the spicy pepper many years ago.
When visiting New Mexico, it can be great to plan your trip around the annual Hatch Valley Chile Festival. This happens late in the summer each year. You can find many events at the festival that can teach you about the history of the chile pepper in New Mexico. The Hatch pepper is celebrated at this fun festival.
There are many products that are made exclusively in New Mexico. You can find great kits to help you make stews and soups with chile peppers. You can make a green chile sauce at home just like you get in a restaurant with the right kit. You simply add water and you have a great sauce. No one will ever question the ease of this sauce.
You can also find premade jugs of green chile sauce that you can use to top anything. A can of green chile peppers can give you a reason to spend more time in your kitchen preparing meals with these outstanding New Mexico green chiles.
You can explore the different types of chile peppers that are produced in the New Mexico area. This can include the variety of chile that most people are most familiar with, the green chile. The green chile is most often seen as a sauce that appears on many southwest cuisine in the south and also in Mexico.
The red chile is used in many of the same ways as the green chile, but many people report that the red chile has a slightly sweeter flavor. This is a mild chile that may not provide the heat factor that other peppers usually have. Some even say that this is a chile that has a slight "cherry" taste.
Hatch chile peppers have a more mild to even medium heat complex. This is a pepper that is grown in New Mexico that has a very meaty flesh. They often have a very short season for growing, but this is a pepper that you can peel and freeze to store easily. With the meaty flesh of this chile, it can be used for a variety of purposes in cooking.
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Foods to Help You Sleep Quickly
By [http://ezinearticles.com/?expert=Md_Abdur]Md Abdur
If you have trouble sleeping, don't pop sleeping pills. It will do you more harm than good and you'll become dependent upon them. Why not take it healthy by eating foods that will help you sleep better? These aren't just any food you find in your refrigerator but those that keep your body calm. Protein-rich foods, for example are a big no. According to a University of Cambridge study, when you eat protein-rich foods it fires up the brain cells that make you alert and energetic. Don't drink before bed either. Although it may feel as if it is lulling you to sleep, when the alcohol wears off (usually after four hours), you are left in a more active state; thus waking you up in the middle of the night. Where do you start? These sleep-inducing foods are a great way to help you sleep better.
When you drink a cup of passion-fruit tea, the chemicals in it called alkaloids act in your nervous system to make you feel sleepy. High levels of alkaloids are only found in the passion-fruit flower, which is used to make tea.
A glass of warm milk in the body help our muscles relax more. When the body temperature is raised, the body also slowly responds to it. Slowing body responses helps induce sleep.
One glass of wine can help you sleep because it contains melatonin. Two or more glasses may delay the start of your sleep and shorten your REM cycles.
Scottish or Irish Oatmeal
Oatmeal contains a complex carbohydrate. This triggers an increase in blood sugar, which triggers insulin production and the release of sleep-inducing chemicals in your brain. Oats contain anti-stress vitamins, melatonin, and vitamin B6.
Bananas are a rich source of potassium and magnesium, which are known muscle relaxants. Bananas also contain an amino acid called L-tryptophan, which turns into 5-HTP in the brain. 5-HTP is converted into serotonin and melatonin, which in turn relaxes our muscles and help us get to sleep faster.
Eating raw or organic honey can help you calm down and fall asleep more easily. This is because raw honey assists naturally occurring tryptophan to relax our body. The glucose in honey is known to interfere with the function of the brain cells that keep people alert; thus it makes you feel more relaxed.
According to recent research in the European Journal of Nutrition, drinking an ounce of cherry juice twice a day, for a week, can help people sleep an extra 25 minutes. Cherries are filled with L-tryptophan, which influences your sleep cycle. Try an ounce or a cup of cherries in the morning and one more before going to bed and you'll see results in just a week.
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Is Your Milk Safe to Drink?
By [http://ezinearticles.com/?expert=M_Heimann]M Heimann
According to a survey in AdAge, the average American will drink over 20 gallons of milk this year, with most people still believing that drinking milk is a natural, healthy habit. And why wouldn't they? After all, milk is sanctioned by the FDA and heavily promoted by the Milk Advisory Board (subsidized by the taxpayer) who constantly advertise that milk is wholesome, healthy and a prime source of calcium. Well, if you want to go on believing that, don't read the rest of this article.
Because the truth is, many believe the dairy industry does not make milk safe to drink, and that much of our milk supply is contaminated with a genetically modified hormone. Twenty years ago, the FDA approved the selling of recombinant bovine somatotropin (called rBST or rBGH) to dairy farmers, resulting in an increase in controversial milk production techniques. Unfortunately, rBST has helped cause an epidemic of pus-producing mastitis in our dairy herds, which has become a plausible link to human illness and disease.
Is milk safe to drink with rBST?
Since November of 1993, rBST has been injected into a majority of our dairy herds, stimulating the cows ability to produce milk, thereby increasing milk production. Nothing wrong with increasing production and the farmers bottom line, right? Well no, as long as the increase in production gives you a healthy result. And that's where the problem starts. By stimulating 'normal' milk production, the rBST causes the dairy cow to overstress itself in making milk, resulting in an udder infection called mastitis. When infected cows are milked, milk in pus, and remnants of the anti-biotic used to treat their infection, goes right into the milk being processed.
Infected cows milk production is added to the milk supply, and milk with rBGH is the milk you and your family are drinking. Plus, some antiseptics used on cow teats to fight mastitis infection contain iodine, which boost pus levels higher, still. Thank goodness the milk is pasteurized before it goes public, but the fact is, you're drinking dead pus cells, and ingesting residual content of the anti-biotics that were in the cows system. Many of our dairy cows are not healthy, and that can't be good for milk drinkers.
Is milk safe to drink because the Milk Board says so?
You be the judge. The dairy industry is aware of the pus in milk problem, because they've developed the somatic cell count, a system to measure the amount of pus in milk. The higher the somatic cell count, the higher the pus count. By law, milk with a somatic cell count that exceeds 750 million parts per liter cannot enter the public milk market. 750 million per liter? Is it just me, or should we expect the dairy industry to get the pus count closer to zero? Why is the milk from mastitis in dairy cattle, being added to the public milk supply in the first place?
And the problem seems to be getting worse. According to the USDA, 1 in 6 dairy cows in the United States are infected with mastitis, which in turn is responsible for 1 in 6 dairy cow deaths on US dairy farms. Sounds like an epidemic to me. What's being done to address the problem of udder-infected stock? Anti-biotics. There is an organization in the dairy industry called the National Mastitis Council, and it's their mission to make recommendations on how to 'control' mastitis, but not eliminate it. So the NMC recommends drugs to fix a problem that shouldn't be there in the first place. Oh, that's just great. Sounds like western medicines approach to sickness and disease, doesn't' it? For goodness sake, don't fix the problem, just treat the symptom.
Is milk safe to drink because the Dairy Industry says so?
All of this brow-raising information on milk is public record. Yet our US Dairy Industry insists that there is no safety risk, that even if there is pus in milk and cheese, it's a minimal inconvenience that is sanitized through pasteurization. Well, the pus cells are not removed from the milk, whether they're dead or mutating. Common sense says that a pus cell... living, dead or just present in milk... is not a good thing to be putting into your kids, your family, your friends or yourself. Canada, Japan, New Zealand and Australia agree, because those countries and many others have banned milk produced from rBST injected cows.
This is not a concern that's going away, because our dairy industry won't admit to a problem. So, there are choices to be made. As a society, we can continue to drink genetically modified milk, pus and all, or choose an alternative. Look at the label of the milk you buy. If it includes rBST or rBGH, consider milk that doesn't. Organic milk is a great way to go, but so are other choices like almond milk or rice milk. Comes down to trust, doesn't it? Is milk safe to drink from a dairy industry that compromises it's milk with hormones, pus and anti-biotics? And if they're willing to sell you compromised milk, what else are they fudging on that they're not telling you about?
Thanks for reading. I enjoy writing on a wide range of interesting topics, and they're posted at http://www.glenhawke.com
Article Source: [http://EzineArticles.com/?Is-Your-Milk-Safe-to-Drink?&id=7660517] Is Your Milk Safe to Drink?
Saturday, December 28, 2013
The 5 Main Health Benefits of Olive Oil
By [http://ezinearticles.com/?expert=Constantinos_K_Costa]Constantinos K Costa
Olive oil is considered as being a liquid gold as it adds taste to our food but is also one of nature's healing wonders. It just so happens that nature has provided us with a food that the dietary fats contained in this magic oil, are in the exact ratio that human beings need them. Below are some of the main health benefits of olive oil.
Heart Benefits - Olive oil is rich in monounsaturated fat and antioxidants like chlorophyll, carotenoids and vitamin E. The Low Density Lipoprotein (LDL) also known as the "bad cholesterol" transports and deposits cholesterol in the tissues and arteries, which can eventually block the arteries leading to deficient blood flow and all kinds of heart problems. The high levels of monounsaturated fats found in the oil not only lower LDL levels protecting you from atherosclerosis, but also allow the High Density Lipoproteins (HDL) the "good cholesterol" to clean the cholesterol away from the arteries.
Inflammation Benefits - The healthy fats in olive oil are used by the body to create natural anti-inflammatory agents which help reduce the severity of both arthritis and asthma. Cell membranes that are not inflamed are able to transport healthy nutrients into the cells and move the waste products out.
Cancer Benefits - A study published in the January 2005 issue of Annals of Oncology (which is a peer-reviewed medical journal of tumors and cancers), showed that a monounsaturated fatty acid found in olives called oleic acid, has the ability to reduce the affect of an oncogene. An oncogene is a gene that in certain circumstances transforms a cell into a cancer cell.
Another research which included over 36,000 participants conducted by the University of Athens revealed that high rates of olive oil consumption, is associated with lower odds of having any type of cancer.
Diabetes Benefits - A Spanish study published in the Scientific Journal Diabetes Care revealed that a Mediterranean style diet, rich in olives, reduces by almost 50% the risk of type II diabetes when compared to a low fat diet. Previously it was prescribed that a low fat diet can prevent various diseases such as heart diseases and diabetes, whereas it now appears that it is the "type" of fat that counts rather than the actual amount of fat. Adding olive oil to your diet can also lower your triglyceride levels. Many diabetics live with high triglyceride levels which increases their risk for heart diseases.
Weight-Loss Benefits - Being overweight goes hand in hand with high levels of cholesterol, heart disease and other ailments. In a study conducted and published in the September 2003 issue of the British Journal of Nutrition, it was found that a significant loss of body weight and fat mass can be achieved by changing only one eating habit; the substitution of saturated fats with olive oil.
By merely switching to monounsaturated fats from saturated fats, you will not only lose that extra weight, but also help you fight against other diseases. By also adding a regular regimen of exercise, you're on your way to an overall healthier lifestyle.
Other Key Facts of Olive Oil
- Olives are made up of 18 to 28 percent oil, in which about 75 percent of that oil is heart healthy monounsaturated fatty acid (MUFA).
- Color is not a factor. The greener oil comes from green olives whereas the black olives yield a lighter color oil.
- 98 percent of the world's olive oil production comes from just 17 countries.
- It does not penetrate foods but rather coats them, so when foods are fried with olive oil they are less greasy than by using other oil varieties.
- By using olive oil in your baked goods such as cakes, you can extend their freshness thanks to the vitamin E.
- It has been used over the years for many things including reducing muscle aches, hangovers, laxative and sedative, and even as an aphrodisiac product.
There is no doubt that olive oil is healthy and considered as a "super food", but like all foods that are beneficial to us, you cannot go overboard when consuming them. Even though olive oil contains healthy fats, it is still high in calories and should be used with moderation. It is thought that about 4 tablespoons of olive oil a day can add to your healthy diet.
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Article Source: [http://EzineArticles.com/?The-5-Main-Health-Benefits-of-Olive-Oil&id=7664909] The 5 Main Health Benefits of Olive Oil
If You're Going To Go Nuts - Go Walnuts
By [http://ezinearticles.com/?expert=Constantinos_K_Costa]Constantinos K Costa
According to scientists, the health benefits of walnuts exceed all other nuts, and should be included more as part of a healthy diet. A research from the University of Scranton revealed that walnuts contained both quantity and quality of antioxidants, which help stop the chain reactions that damage cells in the body when oxidation occurs. So if you're going to go nuts - go WALNUTS. Below are just some of the major health benefits of walnuts.
Improve Sleep - Having trouble getting a good night's sleep? Not to worry. An antioxidant hormone found in walnuts called melatonin can solve your problems. Melatonin is a hormone that is naturally produced in humans by the pineal gland which helps regulate sleep. Make walnuts an evening snack and get ready to relax and snooze away.
Weight Loss - Due to the high packed omega-3 fatty acids, protein and fiber found in walnuts, eating just a handful will make you feel less hungry. Rather than watching your favorite T.V. night show with a packet of crisps or a bowl of ice-cream, go for a dozen of walnuts to snack away; the health benefits are incomparable.
Heart Health Benefits - By improving blood vessel elasticity and plaque accumulation, walnuts can reduce the risk of heart disease. Walnuts are a prime source of alpha-linolenic acid (ALA) which is popular for preventing and treating diseases of the heart and blood vessels by helping to maintain normal heart rhythm and heart pumping. ALA is also used to treat rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and multiple sclerosis (MA).
Diabetes Benefits - Apart from high levels of the minerals manganese and copper, almonds also contain an antioxidant compound called ellagic acid. This antioxidant helps block the metabolic processes which cause inflammation that can lead to insulin resistance and diabetes.
A study in the U.S. involving 140,000 women that consumed a 28 gram pack of walnuts at least twice a week showed that they were 24% less likely to develop type 2 diabetes than those who very rarely or never ate them.
Boost Brain Power - Walnuts have a very high concentration of omega-3 fatty acids which are excellent for brain health. This is why walnuts are sometimes referred to as "brain food". Pay close attention to the shape of a cleaned walnut and you will see that it is shaped like a miniature brain; coincidence? I think not!!
Just because walnuts have been labeled as a healthy food, which they are, it does not mean you can help yourself to unlimited amounts. Just like all other healthy "Superfoods", they only remain healthy when included with moderation in your diet.
If today is the day that you want to change your lifestyle, then do it today, because the more you put it off until "Next Week", the less likely you are to ever start. Just take a quick look at this site today to get some free tips about living a better lifestyle [http://www.whatyoucanachieve.com]www.whatyoucanachieve.com
Article Source: [http://EzineArticles.com/?If-Youre-Going-To-Go-Nuts---Go-Walnuts&id=7665021] If You're Going To Go Nuts - Go Walnuts
The Amazing History of Caviar
By [http://ezinearticles.com/?expert=Rubel_Zaman]Rubel Zaman
Caviar has a history that is not to be taken lightly. Originally a food for peasants as well as kings, it is made from harvested fish eggs. Of all the caviar producers in the world, the best caviar is known to come from Russia.
Russian producers have taken the initiative of suspending all caviar production and exportation so that the natural estuary fish supplies can replenish themselves. After all - no fish eggs - no fish - and certainly, no more caviar.
Other markets have tried, and more or less successfully, filled in the gaps left by the Russian caviar kings.
How did caviar become such a fancy snack? Did it have humble beginnings like the lobster did - giant cockroaches fed to servants until Queen Victoria gave them her royal approval? And how did caviar become so expensive?
All these questions (and more) will be answered in the following paragraphs.
Caviar has been a food source for Europeans dating back to the Middle Ages. The word caviar is derived from a Turkish word, khavyar, it comes from the sturgeon's eggs, which are a rich source of protein.
Fun fact - American saloons routinely served caviar in the days of the Wild West! Their naturally salty flavor made the patrons thirsty, so they consequently bought more beer. Nowadays, many bars continue to serve salty snacks, like peanuts - but that's the way it goes.
In the 1870s, a German entrepreneur realized that the teeming sturgeon in American rivers was a goldmine waiting for him. He cleverly exported the fish eggs - yes, caviar - back to Europe, becoming a millionaire in the process. His price amounted to the outrageously extravagant amount of $1 / pound. Of course that sounds very reasonable in today's economy. By the turn of the 20th century, other entrepreneurs jumped on the bandwagon, and Americans were major exporters of caviar.
Scandal soon followed when it was discovered that up to 90% of the so-called Russian caviar shipped into the US was actually American caviar shipped to Europe, and then shipped back at a much higher price! As they say, there's one born every minute! Strict controls were made, so that now when you buy Russian caviar, it is bound to be the real thing.
Meanwhile the sturgeon fish was nearing extinction, and new sources of caviar had to be found. Salmon eggs and whitefish became introduced as a more economical variant of the prized fish eggs. As a substitute source, steelhead, trout and lumpfish were also developed as new caviar breeding opportunities. By the 1960s, sturgeon eggs were now so rare they were priced exorbitantly for the majority of caviar connoisseurs.
These new types were known as "Red"Salmon Caviar and ""Golden"Whitefish Caviar. The red salmon roe are larger - like teeny tiny balloons, while the traditional sturgeon type is a micro-bubble one tenth the salmon roe dimensions. Typically served as an appetizer, it may be presented in mother of pearl spoons, since steel or silver cutlery may taint its delicate aroma.
From the days of being given away in the Old West to drunken cowboys the cost of caviar is something reserved for only the very rich and their closest friends? In 2012, caviar sold for $2,500 per pound, or $3,000 to $5,500 per kilo.
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Article Source: [http://EzineArticles.com/?The-Amazing-History-of-Caviar&id=7675625] The Amazing History of Caviar
Best Juicing Tips For Making Healthy Drinks
By [http://ezinearticles.com/?expert=Obinna_Heche]Obinna Heche
As a matter of fact, juicing is the perfect way to acquire a new health and vitality to our life. Knowing the best juice combinations for optimal health is key to increasing the benefits of raw foods. Here are a few guidelines that will enable you make delicious, healthy drinks for your entire family.
Be sure to make available a juicing space in your home. Here you will keep your juice machine and all of the accessories required of juicing. This can include cutting boards, knives, cups, bowl, and whatever else you use while you juice. Maintaining a separate juicing area will remind you to do it every day.
It is absolutely important to seek the advise of a doctor if you are pregnant or planning for it in the future. This is important because you want to make sure that the potentially powerful effects of consuming homemade juice will be beneficial to your baby.
When you are ready to get yourself a juicer, do make some research to determine how much heat they generate. Too much heat can generally destroy the nutrients you are trying to keep. The benefits of your drinking juice will be lost if the juicer generates too much heat and as such make sure to check this out before buying.
A nice juicing tip is to know-how thin or thick you'd like your juice to be. Juicing bananas or avocados for instance, will make a puree which might be too thick for what you want. Putting these foods in the blender first, will help thin them out.
Although you can keep the skin on fruits like apples or pears when you juice, some fruit have toxic skin. For example, citrus zest is fine for you, but the white part is bitter for a reason. Papaya and mango do have skins that are known to be toxic to humans, therefore do not include them in your juice.
It is advisable to drink your juices on empty stomach to really get the best nutritional benefits. Your gastrointestinal system is able to absorb more of the nutrients in the juice if it's mostly empty. You will find out you are full after drinking the juice and this makes you eat less when you sit down for a meal.
A very vital aspect of your juicing route is your dental care. Fruit acid and sugar can soften or even deteriorate your tooth enamel. Be sure to do your morning brushing if possible 3-5 minutes after drinking juice. This will surly help kick-start your day in a healthy style.
Finally, the overall health benefits of juicing should be something nobody should ignore. The best way to increase your health through juicing is to gain a thorough understanding of the vitamins and minerals you can extract through different kinds of foods and how to make the tastiest combinations.
Your being healthy will depend on what you give to your body, so make it a point to make good use of the nutritional advantages of juicing provided above. Eat, drink and be healthy.
A very essential aspect of your juicing route is your dental care. Fruit acid and sugar can soften or even deteriorate your tooth enamel. Be sure to do your morning brushing after drinking juice. For more info, checkout the following link [http://omegajuicerreviews.net]Juicing Tips
Article Source: [http://EzineArticles.com/?Best-Juicing-Tips-For-Making-Healthy-Drinks&id=7672636] Best Juicing Tips For Making Healthy Drinks
Friday, December 27, 2013
Some of the Most Popular Honey Varieties
By [http://ezinearticles.com/?expert=Laurel_Abell]Laurel Abell
Different kinds of honey are produced in every state in America. But, some special kinds of honey are only made in a few locations. Honey is also made in most countries around the world, and each country has their own favorite type. For example, consumers in France prefer honey that's been harvested from lavender flowers, and people from Greece prefer honey that's been produced from the wild thyme plant.
When bees are able to access large areas of just one type of flower, like buckwheat or clover, they will produce a honey that has a certain color, and flavor that's typical for that particular plant. This is called monofloral honey. Bees can also make blended honey when they combine different pollens from areas that have many different flowers. Different honey types can also be blended together when they are processed to create a special flavor.
In the United States, there are more than three hundred unique honey varieties available, each coming from a distinct floral source. The color of honey can range from nearly colorless to a darkish brown color. The flavors can vary from very mild to very strong, based on where the honeybees live. In most cases, light-colored honey will have a milder flavor and darker colored honey will have a stronger flavor.
Listed below are several of the most common monofloral honey varieties:
Acacia or the Black Locust Tree - This honey has a mild, but slightly tangy flavor that doesn't crystallize, and has a water white to a very pale amber color.
Alfalfa - Produced in Canada and the U.S., from the plant's purple blossoms. The aroma and color is light and it has a mild flavor.
Apple Blossom - This honey has a slight apple aroma to it, and its color is mostly light to medium amber.
Aster - Its flavor can vary depending on the aster species, and the region where it is made. It crystallizes very quickly, and it has a white to light amber color.
Avocado - Made from California avocado blossoms. This honey has a rich, buttery flavor, and is dark in color.
Basswood - This one has a strong, zesty flavor that has a dark amber color.
Blackberry - It has a delicate, sweet aroma with a very light amber color.
Black Button Sage - This honey is somewhat herbaceous, crystallizes slowly, and has a medium amber color.
Black Locust - A very rare honey because the tree only produces blossoms every couple of years. It has a nice fruity aroma, and has a coloring that is pale to dark amber.
Blueberry - This type is produced in Michigan and New England. The small white flowers from the blueberry bush are used to produce a honey that has a light amber color with a well-rounded flavor.
Buckwheat - It's made in Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, Ohio, New York, and Minnesota. It has a dark color with a full-bodied flavor. This honey contains more antioxidant compounds compared to some lighter honeys.
Canola - This honey is very delicate, has low acidity, and can crystallize easily. The color is white to light amber.
Chestnut - It has a strong nutty, spicy flavor, and is dark brown.
Clover - Based on the area and clover plant, this honey will vary in color from water white to amber. The flavor is very mild, but sometimes it can be tangy. This flower is used for most honey production in the America. Alsike clover, Red clover, as well as the yellow and white sweet clovers, are the most important ones for honey production.
Cranberry - This type has a mild fruity flavor to it with a bit of a tart aftertaste, and the color is medium amber.
Eucalyptus - There are over 500 different species of this flower tree and shrub. This California produced honey differs in flavor and color. It's a strong tasting honey that has a light medicinal scent.
Fireweed - This honey has a light color. It comes from Canada, and the Pacific Northwest. The perennial herb grows naturally in the woods, and it has pinkish flowers that grow on long spikes.
Goldenrod - It has a very robust flavor of beeswax and wildflower. Its color is light amber.
Heather - This type has a slightly bitter flavor that has a burnt caramel aftertaste and its color is dark amber.
Huckleberry - It has a very full-bodied flavor along with a dark amber color.
Kamahi - This is produced in New Zealand, is full-bodied, and its coloring is light amber.
Lavender - This honey is lavender scented, and has a medium amber color.
Leatherwood - It's produced in Tasmania, has strong spicy flavor, and a dark amber coloring.
Lehua Buttery - It has lily-like overtones, and can crystallize quickly. It's often used to make a creamed honey that has light golden color.
Manuka - It is produced primarily in New Zealand, and can be used on your skin for medicinal purposes because of its many antibacterial qualities. The Manuka bush is indigenous to New Zealand.
Orange Blossom - This honey is often a mixture of citrus sources, and it's produced in Southern California, Florida, and some areas in Texas. It's typically light in color, has a mild citrus flavor, and a very pleasant fresh scent.
Pine Honey - This is made in Turkey, and has a dark amber color.
Poplar or Tulip Poplar - It has a strong flavor, and a medium amber color.
Pumpkin - This honey has a light pumpkin flavor, and a medium amber color.
Raspberry - It has a slight raspberry flavor, and it will crystallize quickly, so its usually made into a creamed honey that has a light color.
Rosemary - This type is very fragrant and herbaceous. It complements cheese very nicely. It has a pale amber color.
Safflower - This honey is noted for its milky flavor. Its color is amber to very dark amber, and it also has a slight greenish hue.
Saw Palmetto - It has a slight citrus and herbal flavor, that has woody overtones. It color is medium amber.
Sage - It's mostly produced in California. It has a light color, and a mild flavor. This type of honey is very slow to granulate which makes it a honey packers favorite for blending together with other honeys, in order to decrease granulation.
Silkweed - This one has a strong flavor and scent that is spicy. Its coloring is dark amber.
Sunflower - It has a floral aroma, and can crystallize easily. It has a light to medium amber color.
Tupelo - This is a premium honey that is made in northwest Florida. It usually has a lighter golden amber color with a slight greenish hue. It also has a mild but distinctive flavor. This honey granulates slowly because it has a high fructose content.
Viper's Bugloss or Borage. This honey is produced in New Zealand, has a very delicate flavor, floral bouquet, and a light amber color.
Wildflower - Is frequently used to describe honey that comes from miscellaneous or undefined flower sources.
Different Honey Categories
Most of the time, honey is produced in liquid form. But, honey is also sold in some other forms, and these can be put through different kinds of processing methods.
* Chunk Honey - This is comb honey that has liquid honey poured around it. It's usually packed in wide-mouthed containers that typically have one or more comb honey pieces.
* Creamed Honey - This honey is made using 1 part of finely granulated honey with 9 parts of liquid honey. This honey mixture is then stored at approximately 57 degrees, until it's very firm. The processing produces a honey that has a very smooth, spreadable consistency. It is also called spun honey, whipped honey, churned honey, honey fondant, and in the United Kingdom, it's called set honey. It has large numbers of small crystals, that stop larger crystals from forming, which can often occur in some types of unprocessed honey.
* Crystallized Honey - This has a glucose content that has spontaneously crystallized, usually from a monohydrate solution. This type is also called candied honey or granulated honey. Warming this kind of honey can change it back into a liquid state.
* Dried honey - All of the moisture is removed from liquid honey in order to produce very solid, non-sticky granules. Sometimes this method uses some type of drying and/or anti-caking substances. Dried honey is often used to garnish various desserts.
* Extracted Liquid Honey - The honey comb's wax cappings have been cut off, and the comb is put into an extractor, where a strong centrifugal force removes the honey from the cells.
* Filtered honey - This type has been filtered to the degree that most or all of the pollen grains, fine particles, air bubbles, or any other material usually found in honey, has been taken out. The process generally heats honey up to 150-170 degrees Fahrenheit, so it can easily move through the filter. This honey is really clear, and won't crystallize very quickly, which makes it popular with many grocery stores.
* Honeycomb, Comb Honey or Cut-Comb Honey - This honey is straight from the hive and it's still in the natural beeswax comb. Traditional collection methods use standard wood frames. After the frames have been collected, large chunks of the comb are cut out before packaging. Modern methods use plastic cartridges or rings so manual cutting is not needed and this speeds up the packaging process.
* Pasteurized Honey - It has been heated in the pasteurization process that requires temperatures of 161 degrees Fahrenheit or higher. The pasteurization process will destroy yeast cells, and will liquefy any microcrystals that are in the honey, which will delay crystallization. Excessive heat can degrade the product. Heat can also darken the honey's natural color, as well as change its flavor and fragrance.
* Raw Honey - This is obtained by extraction, straining or settling, and no heat is used. Some honey which has been processed minimally is frequently referred to as raw honey. This honey does contain some pollen, and may also have small wax particles. Many allergy sufferers use local raw honey instead of sugar, because the pollen impurities are believed to reduce hay fever symptoms.
* Strained Honey - This type of honey is put through some type of mesh material in order to remove some particles, such as wax, and a resin-like material called propolis. This process will not remove nutritional minerals, enzymes or pollen.
* Ultrasonicated Honey - It's processed by ultrasonication which is a non-thermal procedure. When honey is subjected to ultrasonication, it destroys the majority of yeast cells. The cells that survive usually lose their capability to grow, and this lowers the fermentation rate of honey significantly. Ultrasonication can also eliminate crystals, and prevent further crystallization. This process works at lower temperatures, around 95 degrees Fahrenheit, and it reduces liquefaction time to 30 seconds or less.
Special Certifications For Honey
Kosher honey is a product that has been produced, processed, as well as packaged according to special Jewish dietary regulations, before it can be certified by certain kosher-certifying organizations.
Organic honey has to be produced, processed, as well as packaged according to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) regulations for organic products, before it can be certified as an USDA organic product. If it has this certification, the product label will contain the USDA organic seal.
Honey Grading Scale
In the U.S., honey grading is conducted voluntarily, and also by the USDA, which can provide fee-based inspections and grading. Honey is graded on several factors, including flavor and aroma, water content, along with defects and clarity. Honey is additionally classified by color, even though it isn't part of the grading scale.
Grade A - Water content is less than 18.6%. This honey has a normal flavor that is very good, and an aroma from the major floral source. It does not contain any caramelization, fermentation, smoke, chemicals, and various other odors. It's practically free from any defects that will affect its appearance and edibility. The honey's clarity is very clear, although, there may be some air bubbles. It may contain some pollen grains or other tiny particles, but these don't affect its appearance.
Grade B - Water content is greater than 18.6% and less than 20.0%. Reasonably good to practically free from caramelization, fermentation, smoke, and other chemicals. Reasonably free from substances that don't affect its appearance or edibility. Is reasonably clear, but it could contain some pollen grains, air bubbles, or small particles that don't affects its overall appearance
Grade C - Water content cannot be more than 20.0%. Fairly good to reasonably free from smoke, fermentation, and caramelization. Fairly free from substances, such as pollen or air bubbles, that don't affect its appearance and edibility.
Substandard Grade - Water content is greater than 20.0% Fails all Grade C categories.
Other countries have varying grading standards. For example, India grades their honey based upon additional factors, like the Fiehe's test and a few other measurements.
Just like wine, the color and flavor of honey varieties can differ every year, even if it's from the very same beekeeper and location. Weather differences and different blossoming seasons can change the look and taste of honey. If you are interested in learning more about the different types of honey products that are available in your area, talk to local beekeepers or the beekeeping association in your area. http://www.hiveandhoneyapiary.com
Article Source: [http://EzineArticles.com/?Some-of-the-Most-Popular-Honey-Varieties&id=7701244] Some of the Most Popular Honey Varieties