Beer Reviews Nastro Azzurro

Nastro Azzurro is brewed in Italy – which, as it’s an Italian beer, is no great surprise – in one of four breweries: two in Rome. one in Bari, and another in Naples. In Milan in 1846, the company was founded by Francesco Peroni and has grown to be the largest brewer in Italy.

Nastro Azzurro first made an appearance in the mid-sixties and is now the most popular beer from Peroni.

It has been widely available in the UK for many years, albeit mainly in Italian eateries, but these days you can find it in most mainstream supermarkets where it retails at just over a pound for a 330ml bottle and around 1.70 for the larger, 660ml bottle.

Nastro Azzuro pours to a pale, yellow colour with lots of fizzy carbonation forming a large head that lasts…no time at all. The head soon disappears leaving a watery-looking effort with just one or two foamy patches which deposit hardly any lace on the glass.

There’s a slightly sweet nose initially but this soon goes the same way as the head, leaving very little aroma to speak of.

Light-bodied, the initial taste is somewhat disappointing and it goes rapidly downhill from there. It’s dry, and there’s a very subtle malt sweetness – subtle to the edge of non-existence. It’s a little grainy, there are some woody tones and I can just about detect some fruit presence but there’s absolutely no oomph, no bite at all. The finish is a little bitter, crisp and dry.

Oh dear, another stinker. At 5.2% ABV, drink a few and you’ll get drunk, but other than that, I can see no earthly purpose in drinking this. Served suitably chilled, I’m sure it’s a great thirst quencher, but save yourself some cash and drink water (I guarantee you’ll hardly know the difference). Actually, I’m sure I’ve had water that was tastier and far more complex.

As for food compatability, I wouldn’t imagine this would complement spaghetti alla carbonara too well – your best bet would be one of those cheap and plastic-like, frozen mock-pizzas.

The Gran Riserva, from the same brewer is a very good beer so it’s hard to see what went wrong here. Perhaps it’s yet another example of a brewer trying to compete in the already congested market for ‘trendy’ imported lagers that have great advertising campaigns and little, if any, taste.

1. Peroni Brewery
2. Peroni Nastro Azzurro | Birra Peroni Industriale S.p.A. | BeerAdvocate

Categories: Miscellaneous

Best Cookware for Ceramic Cooktops

Ceramic cooktops look chic and stylish. The glossy ceramic hobs look as though they may be difficult to maintain when in reality the shiny ceramic cooktops clean well if you use a good hob cleaning spray. Many of us choose our cookware to suit the hob, in many cases it is essential to pick the right cookware. Your ceramic cooktop will probably have four burners that differ in size. To get the most from your gas burners the overall size of the cookware needs to fit the burners. Placing a small pan on a large burner wastes valuable energy.

There are various types of cookware, some will suit your ceramic cooktop and others have to be avoided. Your cooktop will come with a manual and you may find that the manufacturers recommend a specific type of cookware.

It is important to keep your ceramic cooktop in pristine condition. A scratched ceramic cooktop looks shabby and unkempt. Therefore it is important to choose cookware that has a smooth base. Although enamelled cookware is a popular choice it is not recommended for use on a ceramic cooktop. Enamelled cookware that is allowed to get too hot may cause lasting damage to the cooktop.

Ceramic cooktops give instant heat. Some types of cookware are unable to cope with swift changes in temperature. Glass cookware may fracture as it tries to withstand the sudden temperature changes. Copper bottomed cookware may mark your stylish cookhob and cast iron cookware could scratch the surface of the hob.

A good quality heavy gauge aluminium pan is ideal for use on a ceramic cooktop. This type of cookware conducts the heat efficiently and allows you to be in control of your cooking. Stainless steel cookware is also a good choice. If you intend buying stainless steel cookware then try to source some pans with reinforced bottoms. Stainless steel cookware cleans well and radiates the heat evenly. Hard anodized aluminium cookware is another option. This type of cookware is extremely durable. The hard anodized aluminium pan disperses the heat evenly and allows no hot spots to form.

After you have chosen your cookware it is important use it correctly. Dragging saucepans across a ceramic cooktop may cause untold damage, the cooktop could eventually become a mass of fine scratches that are reluctant to budge. The glossy ceramic cooktops look smart and up to date but lightweight cookware may slide too easily. Cookware that slides easily can prove hazardous. Be prepared to spend some time to find the right type of cookware to suit your needs.

1. utensils – What kind of cookware is suitable for a glass ceramic …
2. Best Cookware for Glass Top Stoves: Reviews in 2016

Categories: Life Tip

Best Julia Child Cookbooks

“I was 32 when I started cooking; up until then, I just ate.” -Julia Child

Having a substantial collection of cookbooks is an obsession for some cooks. For most cooks, however, the collection is more about bragging rights than it is about a large set of recipes and ideas that will ever be tried. Julia Child completed a substantial library of cookbooks, the pinnacle of which was her master work, ” Mastering the Art of French Cooking”. 

The truth, according to a Slate article, is that Julia Child’s masterpiece only recently made the top of the bestseller list after the film “Julie and Julia” had cooks flocking to get the book so that it could languish on their shelves. Providing quality instruction, a comprehensive database, and the definitive text for anyone who wants to cook French food was not enough to qualify the book as the best choice for the average person who wants to learn basic or intermediate cooking.

So, in one aspect, Mastering The Art of French Cooking tops the list as her life’s work as well as her best work, but Julia Child wrote two books that are her most popular and useful works.

“You don’t have to cook fancy or complicated masterpieces – just good food from fresh ingredients.” -Julia Child

Her best book provided easy to follow French and American cooking lessons for the practical home cook. That book was “From Julia Child’s Kitchen”. This down to earth book proved to be perfect for the beginning cook who needs to learn from scratch, yet serves as an excellent reference for the more advanced cook. 

This book also includes much loved American dishes with recipes and instructions that range from soups to desserts. She also included her priceless “Culinary Gazetteer, with facts about meats, weights and measures, the metric system, a dictionary of terms, and a host of other techniques. When the new cook needs to learn about degreasing food, stuffing a sausage, or making perfect egg whites, this is the book that becomes dog eared and worn out after a few years.

“Once you have mastered a technique, you barely have to look at a recipe again”  -Julia Child

Finally, Julia’s Kitchen Wisdom, her last book before her death in 2004, is the best book for the cook who needs some explanations and that stash of classic recipes from which all other recipes tend to flow. This book exemplifies her style of giving the basic recipe, then working out variations. Like a food dictionary, this book also gives answers fast because it is so well organized and cross referenced. 

While instructions for the complicated puff pastry and giant poached fish might be missing, this book will also become stained and dog eared over the years. For reliable answers about that unusual cut of steak, the first attempt at cooking fresh green beans, or for actually pulling off the fancy little tart that was foolishly promised, Julia’s Kitchen Wisdom is at the top of the list.

1. Mastering the Art of French Cooking
2. From Julia Child's Kitchen: Julia Child, Paul Child, Albie Walton …

Categories: Health

Best Burger Toppings

Hamburgers are the ultimate American food. There’€™s something for everyone, and topping ideas are positively endless. From sliders to quarter pounders, the burger is recognizable anywhere you go. The burger patty itself can be completely fabulous, but this hot sandwich is great for its topping versatility.

Here are 10 of the best burger toppings:

10. Pickles — Nothing beats fresh dill pickle slices on a fresh-off-the-griddle burger! I Pair with some melted cheddar cheese and a squeeze of mustard, and you’€™ve got my idea of a simple, tasty burger. One of these days I plan to try fried pickles on my burger — mmm, grease on grease!

9. Chili — Instead of a chili cheese dog, try a chili cheese burger. It may get a little messy and require a knife and fork to make it all the way through, but it’€™ll certainly be worth it.

8. Chipotle mayonnaise –€“ I’€™m normally not a fan of regular mayo, but I always make an exception for this tasty sauce.  I even dip fries in it! At first glance, it looks like any other special sauce you might encounter, but one bite in and your palate will be seriously surprised and asking for more. Try it with pepper jack cheese and some avocado slices for a little Southwestern inspiration.

7. Sauteed mushrooms –€“ Mushrooms are somewhat of an acquired taste, but fungus lovers ought to consider this topping on their next burger. The earthy, buttery flavor from sauteed mushrooms with a slice of Swiss cheese can really complement a big beefy patty.

6. Caramelized onions –€“ A slice of raw red onion can be refreshing, but some caramelized onions add a level of rich decadence to a hamburger. Add a slice of cheddar (melted, of course), and you’€™ll have one gooey, mouthwatering version of a classic onion-y slider.

5. Bacon –€“ It’€™s common knowledge that everything is better with bacon — grilled cheese, sub sandwiches, salads, you name it. Out of any bacon-y concoction that mankind has created, the bacon burger reigns supreme. Besides all that, you can add any other topping imaginable with bacon. I’ve yet to come across anything that doesn’€™t work with bacon. You can even grind or finely chop it to add to your meat mix for homemade patties!

4. Blue cheese — This crumbly, moldy cheese might be a bit overpowering for some, but pair it with a little bit of buffalo sauce and crispy onion strings, voila! Blue cheese buffalo burger! Even without the extra topping, the blue cheese in itself is a wonderfully different concept from your regular old cheese on a burger. Some places may even offer a hot, melted version rather than the crumbles or dressing.

3. Hummus — This Middle Eastern spread is a smooth, garlic delight. It comes in a variety of flavors at many supermarkets, but the original kind can’€™t be beat. Smear some on a toasted bun with a slice of vidalia onion and a healthy portion of feta cheese, and you’€™ve elevated the burger to a worldly level.

2. Sliced cheese — Cheddar, pepperjack, mozzarella, Muenster, you name it. Probably the most popular topping for a burger is a slice of cheese. You can never go wrong and there are many choices other than the processed American slices. Each kind brings its own flavor to the table and offers up the opportunity for a wide variety of additional toppings.

1. Guacamole –€“ There’€™s a reason I listed this as number one: guacamole is the Mexican equivalent of bacon in my world. It goes with anything and everything. Nothing tastes better than a hamburger with some melted pepper jack cheese and a hefty helping of guacamole overflowing between the bun and patty. Avocados are great on burgers as well, but guacamole has tons of extra flavor from the lime, cilantro, tomato and onion.

Spice up your burger life! Try any of these sensational toppings or come up with some creative ides of your own. Everyone has his or her own idea of a perfect burger, but perhaps you haven’t found your perfect match just yet.

1. Top This: Easy Burger Topping Ideas – Food Network
2. 35 Best Burger Toppings to Add Sizzle to Your BBQ | The Stir

Categories: Miscellaneous

Leg blood vessel blockage requires heart-protecting drugs

When some one has a severe blockage in a major leg blood vessel (known simply as PAD, peripheral artery disease), it is often overlooked, so people are not given necessary heart medicine. A study at University of Michigan discovered this failure by looking at patients between 2002 and 2005 who underwent leg stenting (PVI) to open up blocked arteries in the legs and/or abdomen. This study includes more than 1,000 patients for an entire year following their PVI procedure.

I would like to note that once a person is diagnosed with clotting in the legs or abdomen, the first phase of treatment requires the patient to change certain lifestyle factors such as losing weight, exercising, quitting smoking. When lifestyle changes aren’t enough, medicines such as blood thinners are introduced, then procedures such as peripheral vascular interventions (PVI) are performed. It is after all of these steps, and protocols are accomplished, that the patient goes home, or resumes daily life with little screening or testing by the physician.

Most patients suffering from PAD die of a heart attack, stroke, or heart failure.

Categories: Health

6 months to go After the race

We are almost exactly 5 months to our DTC anniversary and (hopefully) six months to travel to go to China and get Jaden. So much time has passed in our wait but this six months will be grueling. Hang on girl, our family will be together before we know it.

After the race

Another great weekend has come and gone. This one was marked by our fourth time to participate in the Race for the Cure in downtown San Antonio. What a great event to remember those who have passed and celebrate those who still enjoy life even though they have been touched by breast cancer in some way. I am reminded every year at this event just how much support i have in my life. I have so many people to thank for so many things. A friends ad agency donated their time, talent and supplies for our team shirts. A hundred people were walking around showing their support. My family, friends and co-workers make such a difference in my life on a daily basis. Some people don’t know what to say or do for me or someone in my situation but so much was said when they show up early on their Saturday morning giving up their time and energy for something that is important to me. That says a great deal. Thanks to everyone for donating money by purchasing shirts and walking in a celebration of life. If support has anything to do with a cure, i am heading in the right direction!

Categories: Life Tip

Dog Crate Pads – The Advantage With Using Mats For Your Dog Crates

Considering using dog crate pads? We are going to look at some of the positive factors of utilizing pads for your dog crates.

Without any doubt, dogs are man’s best companion. Each morning, they tend not to care about your looks or mood and will consistently be eager to give you that good morning love kiss. We have so many good times with our pets. Due to the fact that a lot of our dogs are so loving to us, it is just fair that we care for them similarly and give them things that are gonna improve their quality of life. One way of showing them how much we care, is by fitting their crate out with a dog crate pad. Here are 3 pluses, of using pads for your dog crates.

Gives Them Mental composure

You do not have to feel terrible, for putting your dog in a crate, when the crate has a dog crate pad inside it. As soon as you have dog crate pads in any of the dog crate furniture that you have, it is going to ensure a far more comfortable experience for your dog. A dog that is agitated and goes round and round in circles in his crate, indicates that he is less than comfortable. dog crate mats will be helpful in maintaining a good comfort level for your friend.

Lessens Anxiety

With many public transport businesses, it’s practice to put your dog in a crate when taking him on a plane or a train. If you have dog crate pads in your dog’s crate your pet will be much less anxious on the flight. Medication is available in the market to help calm your pet while traveling, but you will want to also put crate mats in their enclosure so that they can rest peacefully and have less anxiety. In the event of the pet waking up during transport, you will be assured that they have dog crate furniture that is common to them. That in turn, will give them comfort.

An Investment In Health

Irrespective of whether your dog is aged or younger should you have dog crate pads you are able to make sure that they will have a a lot longer time of activity. You can make sure that joint discomfort are minimized when there is proper support for your pet in a place where they are often relaxing.


So there you have it! Several awesome benefits using pads for your dog crates. You now understand that you can boost the comfort level for your pet, enable them to have less anxiety as well as helping their health.

Now that you know how valuable dog crate pads are I am sure that you are prepared to invest in one for that wonderful puppy that is in your life. Ultimately you are going to be saving a lot of money on veterinarian visits if you take proper care of your pet. A happier pet is a healthier pet.

Categories: Miscellaneous

How to Get Rid of Tonsil Stones

Tonsilloliths, or tonsil stones, are tough, yellow, globules within the back of throat. They can be formed mucus from micro organism, the nasal passages and fruit particles develop in the crypts of the tonsils. Small tonsilloliths may be barely noticeable and are usually consumed or expelled in a cough. They are able to start to activate discomfort or irritation, as the stones become bigger. Analyze on for most ideas on the best way to eliminate the stones without the help of a physicians.

It is a lot of the time potential without placing everything in your mouth, to get rid of these stones. Rubbing on the tongue in opposition to the throat’s back may work. Or attempt lifting the tongue towards the top of the mouth, keeping your club head back and consuming.

Typical Methods of Removal

One common technique of tonsil stones removal would be to press moistened organic cotton swab or a finger against the base of drive and the tonsil up to squeeze them out. To executing this, the downside is which it may activate the gag reflex. To quit this you may attempt finish the tonsils with the anesthetic throat spray.


Try drinking several glasses of the bubbly, sugar-free use up similar to pop h2o each and every day, should you would rather have a light way to loosen the stones often over time. Gargling with a vinegar and water option is also recommended.

You can uncover a program precious for dislodging tonsilloliths, should you glance through the nail trimming set. An ear curette resembles a small shallow spoon with a very long handle. It is developed to eliminate earwax. Its volume is legal for removing stones in the tonsil crypts.

Pressurized drinking water can filled out the stones. Make use of the tongue attachment, change Waterpik irrigator to its tiniest executing and target it directly at the natural stone, should you have a it. Instead, complete a chicken-baster with water, point it in the stone and smash the bulb.

Some have had success utilizing utilizing a medication dropper to draw on tonsilloliths from the crypts. Fill the dropper and spray it on the tonsils. Doing this may help take stones for the top. Press the bulb of the dropper, direct it at release and a jewel. With success, the natural stone will soon be taken into the tube.

Other Methods

A few of the strategies possessed to eliminate tonsil stones for removing are potentially not safe, used and are definitely not advocated. Definitely not stay some item that is sharp that is small, toothpick or a needle to the mouth. Not just may you severely damage your tonsils, there is the risk that is considered which you lead to in the emergency room and can consume the item.

Comprehending the best way to remove stones is helpful, but it is much far better to keep them from happening in the very first place. Exceptional verbal hygiene is the secret. Groom you teeth before going to bed and when you awake in the morning. Brush or scrape on the tongue to clear away bacteria. Gargle with cooking soda solution or an antiseptic mouth rinse . You may also want to softly dress the very top of your tonsils using a soft tooth brush to loosen any that might be forming, in the event you are susceptible to tonsilloliths.

Get more information if you need to have them removed, read another post here:

Categories: Health

Benefits and Care of Free Range Chickens

Free range chickens have become a trendy thing in recent years and there are many reasons for this. Before we get into the hows and whys of keeping free range chickens let us establish that, for the purposes of this article at least, the term “free range” shall refer to chickens that may be in a coop at night but are allowed outside, either into a large pen, or yard, for a large part of the day.

-Why Keep Free Range Chickens-

Free range advocates prefer to keep their chickens this way for many reasons, one being that it is more natural for the birds which will typically be healthier due to being kept more naturally.

Chickens for egg production, or eating, are normally kept in very crowded enclosures; in some countries (of which the United States is one) the minimum amount of ground space legally required per bird is less than a sheet of paper. This leaves the birds with no room to move freely, they are often bored and peck at each other, as such free range is primarily a less cruel way of keeping chickens.

Free range chickens (hens or roosters) will eat a variety of bugs and garden pests, such as slugs, and grasshoppers, they will also eat ticks, flies, and mosquitoes.

Free range chickens will eat dandelions but are not a real means of controlling the weeds as such, however, as they free range the foods they eat means they require less chicken feed (although still must be fed properly).

Chickens come in a variety of breeds, including small bantam chickens, offering something for everyone, from friendly birds that make great pets, to more aggressive types that try to act as guard animals.

Of course hens lay eggs and all chickens can be eaten, and often people will say that free ranged birds, and their eggs, have better flavor.

-How to Keep Free Range Chickens-

Chickens should have a coop, depending on how many will be housed, this can be a small shed or a specially designed building. The coop must have nesting boxes if hens are kept (1 nesting box per 4 birds) and should have a place for the birds to roost at night.

Like all animals chickens need a water source and there are special waterers for them as they will drown in deep water.

There are several different chicken feeds available from growing ration, to laying ration. Chickens can also be given Chicken Scratch, which is like candy to them and will help them bond to the one who throws a bit out every day.

Laying hens should also have oyster shell, and all chickens need grit.

Novices should start by purchasing birds that are at least a month old, but experienced bird handlers might want to buy hatching eggs, or week old chicks. These will need special brooders as they must be kept warm.

Hens do not need a rooster to lay eggs and multiple roosters may fight when hens are around, so it is best to either keep only hens, or have no more than one rooster per eight to twelve hens.

Eggs should be collected daily, with most birds laying in the morning. Not all hens will sit on the eggs so even if a rooster is present the eggs may not hatch. If one wants to have a hen raise chicks they will need either a “broody” hen, or an incubator.

Anyone who wishes to keep free range chickens should check laws in their area (some cities allow backyard chickens, but most do not), and talk to their veterinarian about suggested vaccinations.

The chickens should be kept safe in their coop at night and are at risk of attack from foxes, skunks, raccoons, and dogs. Cats generally will not bother adult chickens.


Anyone who has ever kept free range chickens will be impressed with how personable chickens can be if the breed is well selected. Remember, chickens are just like any other animal, they prefer to be kept naturally, and free range is just the way to do it.

1. The Pros and Cons of Free Range Chickens – The Free Range Life
2. Free Range Chicken Farming | The Natural Poultry Farming Guide

Categories: Life Tip

Budget Frozen Dinner Microwave Meals Brand Reviews

Frozen entrees are a quick way to prepare a meal if you are in a hurry or can’t cook. There are many brands of frozen entrees, from Michelina’s to Swanson’s Hungry Man line. But are they really good, or just an overpriced convenience? Each brand has some meals which are unique. Healthy Choice’s spaghetti includes vegetables, Marie Callender’s includes garlic bread. Most of the microwave meals are high in sodium, so check the nutrition labels if you are trying to avoid sodium.

Michelina’s is the cheapest brand, they are usually sold for $1 or less. They are small, typically only 8 oz. You microwave them right in the box, they do not waste money on extra packaging. They have fewer calories than most other brands, because they are so small. Their Italian meals are better than the Asian ones, in my opinion. But the best use for this brand is being a cheap, quick lunch.

Smart Ones (from Weight Watchers). These are the official Weight Watchers food, they list Weight Watchers points. If you are really watching your weight, beware of the Calzone Italiano. It is good, but eating the whole box counts as two servings. Smart Ones also makes breakfasts and deserts.

Lean Cuisine (from Stouffer’s) also comes in small packages. They are overall better than Michelina’s, and have been on sale for $1.88 recently. They also have Weight Watcher’s point on the package, even though they are not affiliated with Weight Watchers. This brand has the most variety. My favorites from this brand are the unbreaded seafood meals, like the Salmon Mediterranean meal. I also like their Flatbread Melts. My favorite meals from Stouffer’s regular red box lineup are the small packages of lasagna and the green pepper steak.

Healthy Choice: This brand seems to do more to cut down on cholesterol and sodium than the others. The meals are generally bigger and yet not too high in these areas. I like the simple selections (without dessert) because I don’t always want some apple pie filling for dessert. The spaghetti from this brand does include vegetables.

Banquet, a brand of ConAgra foods, is another cheap brand that is sometimes on sale 10 for $10. It does not try to be a diet brand. The “Fried Rice with Chicken and Egg Roll Meal” is better than Michelina’s Asian because at least it has an egg roll.

Marie Callender’s is a better tasting brand from ConAgra. The package lists what percent of vegetables and meat it gives you rather than how many Weight Watcher Points it is worth. For example, the “Meat Loaf and Gravy” meal gives me 50% of my vegetables and 60% of my meat. “Herb Roasted Chicken” is one of my favorite meals from this brand. I also like their Spaghetti, which is one of the few meals to come with bread. Pasta seems to be much simpler to include in a frozen meal. But I can cook my own spaghetti, so I do not get it that often.

Swanson’s Hungry Man: Swanson’s makes a whole line of frozen foods. But the only Swanson’s frozen meals sold at my local Kroger store are it’s Hungry Man frozen foods. They are big, with a pound or a pound and a half of food. They cost $3-$5, and their advantage is more food, not healthier food. Most of these meals are very high in sodium, using up most of your daily allowance, but the Southern Fried Boneless Chicken isn’t too bad.

1. TV dinner
2. The 9 Best Frozen Microwave Meals – Ranking & Review – Thrillist

Categories: Health