Tag Archives: Tips

Helpful Tips For Making Your Meatless Mondays Extra Special

roastedvegetables

Meatless Mondays are increasing in popularity across the globe.  Typically, even though it’s the second day of the week, Monday tends to be the day when most persons seek to implement positive changes to their lifestyle.  So, what better Day to start enjoying the benefits of a meat-free diet than on Monday?

But just what can you do on a Meatless Monday to make it fun and to ensure that the positive effects of it are lasting?

Here’s some helpful tips that will make your Meatless Mondays extra special:

1.  Plan ahead – You’ll save yourself a lot of time and energy by doing this.  Set a menu, from Breakfast to Dinner, and start pulling together a list to shop around for the items.

2.  Have a Variety – Don’t confine yourself to just salads.  Vegan recipes are aplenty, from Vegan soups to Veggie Burgers, Veggie Sandwiches, Vegetable Pilafs and more.  And for your Vegan Desserts?  The choices are endless: choose from Vegan Ice-creams, Vegan Cheesecakes and so much more.  Meatless Mondays are not just about abstaining from meat for a day, but, enjoying the wide and delicious variety found in non-meat fare like your fruits, vegetables, nuts and whole grains.

3.  Make it a group event – Invite friends and family to bring a Vegan dish and have a Vegan Lime/Vegan Party.  That way you’re not alone and you can enjoy sharing funny stories of your Vegan adventures or misadventures in the kitchen.  You’ll be surprised to find that some of your family and friends are also trying to make healthier decisions when it comes to eating.  When it’s done in a special circle of friends or family you’ll also get the support and encouragement needed to make better lifestyle choices.  And, everyone, including you, will be looking forward to the next Meatless Monday.

4. Give it a theme – “Caribbean Vegan Monday” or “Mediterranean Meatless Monday”.  Take your pick.  Themes help take Meatless Mondays from bland and boring to fun and exciting and help guide your menu choices.  It also helps you to save on your food bill since you can use some of the same ingredients on your themed shopping list to come up with a variety of dishes.

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Comparison Shopping – Where to Buy?

Generally, one may think of comparison shopping as going from store to store to see which items are cheaper and then making a purchase.  Proper comparison shopping, however, goes way deeper than that.  It serves to inform the consumer where to go to get the most out of their money by taking into consideration several factors.

Here are some comparison shopping tips to help you get the most out of your shopping experience and your wallet!

1. Affordability – after all, you wouldn’t want to have to break the bank in order to shop at that store.  Ask yourself “Can I really afford this”, “Would I be breaking my budget”

2.  Location – if the money you think you’re saving is heading straight into the gas tank then you will probably have to reconsider if that supermarket, grocery store or shopper’s club is right for you.  Let’s say you live in Diego Martin but heard about this really cheap store in San Fernando, would this really be cost effective on a regular basis?  I don’t think so.

3.  Convenience – “is it close to work”, “Can I get to this store on the way to pick up the kids from school”,  “Can I get there easily if I don’t have access to a vehicle”.  Let’s say I live in Diego Martin but work in San Fernando and that really cheap store my friend was telling me about is a short distance away from work.  I can stop at that store after work before heading home.  Now that’s convenient!  Also, if you’ve made a purchase and discover you have a faulty product then it will be nice to know that they’re about 20 minutes away from where you live or a place you frequent and not one hour and a half.  If the store is not a convenient place to shop then it will most likely discourage you from going back to get an exchange or refund.

4.  Varietyhow many of your shopping items can you find in that store?  Even if you only have a few items on your list, if you wish to try something new can that store offer you that variety?  

5.  Membership or Shopper’s card – this helps you to save money in the long run.  Hi-Lo Foodstores, for example, is famous for their Smart Shopper’s Card where a consumer can rack up points (double points on Wednesdays) and be rewarded in the end.  However, while TruValu does not have a direct shopper’s card (anymore), having a MAGNA rewards card also allows you to rack up points at participating grocery stores including TruValu.  And get this, because TruValu is more affordable than Hi-Lo, when you use your MAGNA rewards card you can get even more savings.  

6.  Overall Shopping Experience – Do you feel welcome at that particular store?  Are the staff members friendly or polite?  If there is a problem, is it easy to contact the floor manager, etc.?  Is the store generally clean?  Do they make attempts to enhance the shopping experience for the customer?

Shopping – even for groceries – ought to be a pleasurable experience, not a headache.

So the next time you’re out shopping, take these tips into consideration to ensure you have the best shopping experience possible.

3 Essential Tips – How to Make Your Vegetables Flavorful

Tired of bland, boring, mushy vegetables?

Discover these 3 Essential Tips on how to make your vegetables flavorful.

1. Seasonings – like you would your meat

I’m serious.  You wouldn’t just throw a slab of steak on the grill and cook it without seasoning it, right?  Exactly!  You don’t want to cook your vegetables without at least adding some type of seasoning to it.

What type of herbs to use?

The great thing about vegetables is that it works well with almost any type of seasoning whether fresh or dried.

Here in the Caribbean, we have an abundance of rich spices and fresh herbs to choose from.

2. Variety – the more the merrier

Bell Peppers, Carrots, Broccoli, Celery, Eggplant all have distinct flavours.  When combined, it’s a mouthful of flavours.

3. Light cooking – it’s no rump roast

No one likes soggy or mushy vegetables, unless you’re a baby.

When cooking, roasting or grilling your vegetables, one thing to remember is that while you can season it like you would your meats, you don’t have to cook it like meats.  Meats tend to take a longer time on the grill, in the pan or in the oven because of the muscle fibres that have to be broken down and fully cooked.  Unlike meats, vegetables are best when cooked just long enough to enrich the colour and have a nice ‘soft’ crunch.