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Almond milk – Salt & Pepper – Italian Cuisine

Almond milk - Salt & Pepper


It has been for centuries theelixir balsamic and the refreshing drink par excellence of ours south. Obtained from a widespread and available raw material: le almonds. Today it is already ready in all supermarkets in Italy. A "Announcements" who conquered the Italian: not only have sales increased significantly almond milk but it is also found more and more often used as "noble" ingredient of many industrial products, such as sweet snacks and ice creams. But why do you like it so much?

A true "Latin lover"
To understand the current almond milk boom, one must take a step back and focus on oily fruit from which it is obtained. It is the almond, in all its forms, to be on the crest of the wave like never before: according to the Osservatorio Immagino Nielsen GS1, in super and hypermarkets there are over 900 products that contain it. A number, until a few years ago, unthinkable. Almonds like them because they are good and they do well. And their milk is a tasty and fast way to consume in every moment of the day. Not only: it is also an ingredient smart for many drinks (like smoothies and smoothies) and for many dessert recipes, too unsweetened. And for many it also represents avegetable alternative with cow's milk. Let's deepen these aspects.

A good drink (even in the kitchen)
With his taste delicately sweet, almond milk makes many recipes for cakes, plum cakes, and donuts special puddings. And it is essential to prepare sorbets, granita and that delicious confectionery specialty that is the "biancomangiare". It also lends itself very well to the preparation of thirst quenching drinks and toning, like the smoothie made with 50 g of beet, a carrot, a green apple, a banana, two tablespoons of raspberries and 50 g of ginger. Also try pairing with a superfood like spirulina. That's enough whisk 230 ml of almond milk with 2 grams of spirulina dried, 11 ml of elderflower syrup and 5 ml of juice carrot, and then filter, to get a super drink, perfect after the activity sporty and to cope with the fatigue caused by hot. Besides finding it ready-made, almond milk is easy even from prepare at home using theextractor. 100 g of almonds are left in soaking in 50 cl of water for one night and, the next morning, water is replaced. Then place the almonds in the extractor gradually adding 40 ml of water and a second passage is made in the extractor, adding another water if necessary. The almond milk thus obtained should be consumed within two days.

A beneficial food?
"Drink" the almonds brings the same benefits healthier than eating them? Unfortunately not. In almond milk the amount of this fruit a shell it is very low (around 2%). Most of the product sold at the super is made up of water, from additives (such as stabilizers and emulsifiers) and from sugars added (just check it by reading the list of ingredients). And this explains why the milk of almond is not a light drink: a glass 200 ml is worth about 50kcalorie, made mostly from sugars and fats. Most of his people though fat they are "good" (like oleic and linoleic acid) because they keep the system healthy circulatory. And then in almond milk there is also a good amount of antioxidants, like vitamin E. The mix of minerals, trace elements and vitamins (often added, as specified on the packaging) makes it a good one supplement natural for those who follow a diet Vegetarian or wants to give up, at least for a while, to animal proteins and lactose, which it lacks. However, almond milk is not a real alternative to that of cow, because it is too low in protein (less than 1%), too full of sugar and is naturally deficient in some important micronutrients, such as football, vitamin D and la vitamin B12. Furthermore, according to the WHO, replacing cow's milk with almond milk leads to iodine deficiency, increasing the risk of damage brain.

Manuela Soressi
July 2019

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Life of apricot, the orange of summer – Salt & Pepper – Italian Cuisine

Life of apricot, the orange of summer - Salt & Pepper


In winter it is the orange that brings us back the sun, the orange is the emblem of fruit that radiates health from all the segments. Orange all year round? In a certain sense, but only in a certain sense, it is possible … In summer, however, the orange is leii: theapricot. Not just for the color. But also because it too is a real cocktail of substances that make us good …

We have already learned how to choose and keep them. Now let's find out what they are beneficial properties of this fruit which is very rich. And let's start right from what gives them the beautiful color: beta carotene, what gives us a textbook tan. Its main function is to antioxidant, which counteracts free radicals – those that cause stress and oxidative damage associated with the onset of many diseases and cellular aging. Free radicals are the cause of the so-called "bad cholesterol".

Like all carotenoids, it is a precursor of the vitamin A, retinol, which the body converts precisely into the aforementioned vitamin in case of need. Particularly valuable for the view, it also serves the immune system and to "feed" the tissues.

We remain on vitamins: apricots also excel in C vitamin and then B1, B2 etc. etc. They are then rich in lycopene, a substance found in foods of plant origin that also belongs to carotenoids and with very strong antioxidant properties. And they are not the only constituents of these qualities rich … Together with lutein, another nutrient well present in the apricot, protect the eyes, in particular the retina from the damage of ultraviolet rays and together with all the other antioxidants prevent the onset of skin blemishes due to sun exposure and advancing age.

Don't eat apricots at all is good for the skin… If the fruit associated with a smooth and velvety complexion is usually the fishing, in reality apricot is his number one summer ally. And speaking of summer, vitamin A stimulates the production of melanin, responsible for tanning, in fact,and skin protection.

In addition to the fresh fruit, apricot oil is used for the skin, derived from its stones, which has elasticizing, protective and emollient properties. However, the fresh fruit can be used for do-it-yourself masks to treat the skin, revitalize it and fight cutaneous spots, even simply blending the apricots and spreading the mixture on the skin, maybe cooler than the fridge. In the cream version, to prepare the skin for the sun, it can be mixed with milk and maybe a little almond oil.

Rich in water (86%) they bring many and various minerals (calcium, phosphorus etc.) and above all very potassium, essential to the body to support most vital functions, but whose deficiency is also linked to fatigue and depression: for people with chronic fatigue, an abundant consumption of this fruit is highly recommended.

Last but not least: potassium helps with the problems of cellulite retention since – together with magnesium – it is the purifying mineral that most helps to dispose of it.

The apricots are the fruit that contains more carotene and potassium absolute.

Dietary fiber, of which they are well supplied, helps the digestive process, the sense of satiety and therefore weight loss. In all this, the calorie intake of this fruit is one of the lowest of the category: a pound of apricots does not even contain 100 kcal. Despite the few calories, it is a fruit very nutritious. Thanks to the sorbitol they contain (a natural sweetener then used also on an industrial level) they also have slight laxative effects.

Regarding fertility, it is true that apricots are rich in minerals indispensable for the production of sex hormones: in ancient China women who wanted to have a child ate a lot of them …

Carola Traverso Saibante
June 2017
updated to July 2019

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How to fight sweat – Salt & Pepper – Italian Cuisine

How to fight sweat - Salt & Pepper


There are about 3 million. We talk about the sweat glands scattered on the skin surface of our body, which reach maximum concentration on the soles of the feet, the palms of the hands and the armpits. They perform a very important, fundamental function: they lower body temperature. When we breathe, the water contained in the sweat evaporates and keeps our temperature at acceptable levels, even during periods of great heat.

However, sweat does not only contain water, but also sodium and potassium ions, cholesterol, urea and lactic acids. There are many anti-heat dishes, simple recipes rich in liquids and nutrients that help us replenish. And then there are the foods to avoid, especially to sleep well even when the temperatures are soaring.

Returning to sweat: not everyone sweat the same way, with the same intensity. It is a personal physiological question, also determined by anxiety, stress or one bad diet.
Who suffers from excessive sweating it loses so many liquids, so it must restore water and mineral salts.

The most common mistake is to gulp down cold drinks. The pleasure is immediate, but illusory. Frozen water and iced drinks lower the internal temperature of our body too abruptly, which rebels … sweating even more. It's like filling a sink with the drain open, water is inevitably lost. We continue to sweat and get thirsty: it is the torture of Tantalus.

What to do then? Drink water a room temperature or at most fresh, little at a time and often, so that the kidneys can hold it, filter it and then distribute it to our body. It would be even better to eat often fruit and vegetables which, in addition to the water supply, supply us with vitamins and mineral salts lost during transpiration.

What others mistakes to avoid? If we eat foods that are too spicy, spicy or salty, our body requires more water to counterbalance the excessive flavors we have eaten.
When we digest fried, red meats, too elaborate dishes, fat and alcohol, our body temperature rises and sweating rears up.

Anyone suffering from excessive sweating should also avoid eating garlic and onion. The odors of the two vegetables are spread by perspiration with unpleasant effects.

So how should we feed ourselves? It is easy to say: drink little and often, eat lots of fruit and vegetables (except the "scented" one), fish or white meats, whole grains and … wait for milder temperatures.

Mauro Cominelli
28 July 2015
updated to July 2019
from Aurora Quinto

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