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RedYetiWare Kitchen Shears – Item of the Day

sheers

Every day I bring you an item on Amazon that I personally use or has been purchased by many members of the audience and I have researched enough to recommend.

Today’s TSP Amazon Item of the day is one of my favorite kitchen tools, RedYetiWare Kitchen Shears.  I kid you not that I went though almost a half dozen different shears to find the ultimate pair.  What I believe I have found is once again the best value to price ratio.

In this case though it is balanced to the value side, as these are better quality than items costing 2-4 times more.  Frankly I don’t even understand how an item this good sells for only 12.75.  They only have 8 reviews on Amazon but 100% are 5 stars.

There are a few things I require of shears if they are to be used in my kitchen.  They are power, quality steel, micro serrated and you must be able to take them apart.  Oh and as they must be able to come apart, they should also stay the hell together when being used.

Here is a break down of each area of concern…

  • Power – I want something that will remove the back bone of a large chicken or duck without working hard, these do that brilliantly.
    .
  • Quality Steel – These are made of 2CR14 stainless steel.  This is not something a custom knife maker is going to use but for the application it is great steel.  I judge them on performance and so far they get an A+.  I have been using them a long time, they hold sharpness well, and 2CR14 seem to be a good quality steel for this level of tool.
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  • Micro Serration – One blade of these is a strait edge the other has micro serrations.  This is why they are good at cutting though bones, joints, cartridge.
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  • Take Apart – This is critical, if I am going to take apart raw chicken one day and cut salad vegetables the next, you must be able to 100% clean every part of it.  Take down shears are also easier to sharpen.  And critically these don’t accidentally come apart while using them, which I have seen very expensive shears do.

One great thing about the take apart feature, is that the part that retains the blades can be adjusted.  It simply has a small “acorn nut” on it, that can be loosened and reset then re-tightened.  I have never had to do this, but it is clear that you can.

They are also great for butchering quail.  Though I have gone to a new method I call “the dove hunter method” that requires no tools at all.  That said for those of you that butcher quail with shears, you will love the job these do.

Kitchen shears are a great tool, they are great for cutting herbs in the garden as well.  Here is the biggest endorsement I can give them, since I featured them in my “Pepper Kitchen Tools” episode, several hundred of you guys have purchased them, and none of you, not a single one has sent me a single complaint.

Once you get a good set of shears in your kitchen you will find they make a lot of tasks faster and quicker.  If you are in the market for some, check out, RedYetiWare Kitchen Shears and I promise you will not be disappointed.

Remember you can always find the TSP Amazon Item of the day by just going to TspAz.com and by shopping at TspAz.com anytime you shop on Amazon you help support TSP and the work we do here no matter what you buy.

P.S. – Yes these have a bottle opener and a fish scaler on them and it says they can crack nuts.  Don’t buy them for that, such things are best done with tools specifically designed for the task.  I really don’t like “all in one” tools because they never excel at all their tasks.  However, these excel at being shears, so that is what I recommend them for.

 

 

Lodge 14″ Cast Iron Wok – Item of the Day

Every day I bring you an item on Amazon that I personally use or has been purchased by many members of the audience and I have researched enough to recommend.

Today’s TSP Amazon Item of the day is the Lodge 14″ Pre Seasoned Cast Iron Wok.  I have been in the market for a new wok for a while.  Our current wok is a huge wok with one of those “stick free surfaces”.  It works okay but it is really too big (like 20 inches) and it just doesn’t really hold heat the way I would like, so it is going off to Goodwill.

In my quest for the new Spirko wok I examined two main options, the first was carbon steel and the second cast iron.  Basically I came down to the conclusion that the chief advantage to carbon steel is it is lighter and better for “tossing” stir fry.  Where as the heavy cast iron does better with great heat distribution.  However, given it comes in at 11 lbs, you are going to be “stirring” that stir fry, not tossing it.

The other advantage to the thinner carbon steel is it heats up faster, where the cast iron wok will hold the heat longer.  In the end I sat down in my kitchen and asked myself, which one is more likely to be still being used and in better shape then the day I bought it, long after I am dead.  On that thought I considered my grandmother’s old cast iron griddle that my father still has.  It was her mother’s and it was one of the few things though brought to the US from the Ukraine in the 1890s.

Well, that was that!  So I started looking at brands and I looked at thinner cast iron woks that weighed a bit less, but the reviews were abysmal and some were not actually cast iron.  Once again I thought about my own kitchen, all the cast iron I own is either old school stuff like Griswold found at flea markets and antique malls and almost all the new stuff comes from Lodge.

I have a Lodge Dutch Oven, a Lodge Griddle and quite a few other Lodge items.  So I checked out the Lodge Wok and realized it was always going to be my choice in the end.  No matter how many other ones I looked at there was one that you knew exactly what you were going to get when  you ordered it.

Lodge has been making cast iron for over 100 years right here in America, of the current manufactures they are simply the best at it.  Now I do dearly love old school “milled” cast iron, which is why I am always sniffing around antique malls, frankly it is about the only reason Dorothy can drag me into one.  But in 45 years of living I have yet to see and old school milled cast iron wok.

Buying the Lodge was a solid choice and with all the stir frying we are doing since discovering new vegetables like Thai Water Spinach which is growing far faster than we can eat it all, it was time for a new wok.  The Lodge is simply fantastic, this thing gets screaming hot, it stays that way.  I power the burner up heavy to get it pre heated but after that a low flame keeps it cooking hot and fast the way wok cooking is supposed to be.

Frankly if I had a larger kitchen I would like have this wok and a hand hammered Japanese made carbon steel wok as well, but my kitchen is rather small and any time I buy a new pan, frankly an old one has to go.  And funny enough cast iron seems to be taking over my kitchen.

So if you are in the market for a wok, and want something your great grandchildren can be using long after you are gone, check out the Lodge 14″ Pre Seasoned Cast Iron Wok today.  There are not many things left in our modern world that you can buy for under 50 dollars and yet know they will outlast you and your children, this is one of them.

Remember you can always find the TSP Amazon Item of the day by just going to TspAz.com and by shopping at TspAz.com anytime you shop online you help support TSP and the work we do here no matter what you buy.

Weber Premium Charcoal Grill – Item of the Day

bronzegrillEvery day I bring you an item on Amazon that I personally use or has been purchased by many members of the audience and I have researched enough to recommend.

Today’s TSP Amazon Item of the day the Weber Premium Charcoal Grill.  I have owned a lot of grills, both gas and charcoal and this is my all time all around favorite.  While I do appreciate the instant light and go of my gas grill if I have 30 minutes to wait for the coals to ash over I go to my Weber more times than not.

Consider the orginal Weber Kettle Grill was made from an old buoy in 1952 and in 1956 was redesigned to look much like today’s grill.  Since 56 it has had some changes here and there but it is still pretty much the same.  Folks that is 60 years!  When something is around 60 years, one must conclude it is because it works.

The grill I recommend is the mid level model, the Weber Premium Charcoal Grill and mainly due to the upgraded “one touch cleaning system”, which should be called the no touch system in my view.  No need to ever get covered with ash.  Just turn the vent handle back and forth and remove the catcher, dump and replace it, done.

I grill at both high and indirect temps with my Weber, I smoke with it, I have done skewers over strait coals, I have even cooked meat directly on the coals.  Honestly if I needed more space for grilling at 149 shipped free on prime, I would just buy a second Weber Premium Charcoal Grill and call it a day.

A word of advice, if you take care of a Weber Kettle it will last a very long time.  Meaning someday your grill may be coveted by something called a “Kettle Head”.  What is a Kettle Head?  A collector of these grills, they even have their own very active forum.  And when you see them find and restore older gills they always seem to crave anything besides black.

I am not saying your grill will become a collectable some day but if you want the ability to sell it you will find Kettle heads prefer colors like bronze and green.  Personally I got bronze because well, it just looks cool and I like to be different.

Grilling is my favorite way to cook and the simplicity of the Weber is a great way to go.  If you have been considering a charcoal grill I have to say nothing really stacks up to the Weber Premium Charcoal Grill from a value to cost ratio.  Best part is how easy to assemble it is, it is really just a one beer job.

Remember you can always find the TSP Amazon Item of the day by just going to TspAz.com and by shopping at TspAz.com anytime you shop on online you help support TSP and the work we do here no matter what you buy.

P.S. – This is a special encore item, because Weber is for a limited time bringing back red in this grill.  This is one of the most sought after colors by Kettle Heads, personally I still prefer bronze, but given that the red is back (at a premium by the way) for a very short time, I decided to bring this item back around.  You can find the Red Kettle Here.

Currently you can pre order it and it will be released on Nov. 15th, Weber has not said yet how many will be released or for how long it will be available.  But it is the perfect Christmas gift for the griller in your life, I am sure the timing by Weber is to that end!

 

 

 

Chard/Cary 9.5 quart Smart Pressure Canner and Cooker – Item of the Day

cannerEvery day I will bring you an item on Amazon that I personally use or has been purchased by many members of the audience and I have researched enough to recommend.

Today’s TSP Amazon Item of the day is the Chard/Cary 9.5 quart Smart Pressure Canner and Cooker

In the past I have recommended the PowerPressure Cooker XL, as it was the only electric canner guaranteed to be safe for pressure canning by the manufacture.

The Chard is better in so many ways, while also being guaranteed safe by the manufacturer for pressure canning, it has several additional features that make me want to exchange my PowerPressure Cooker, they are…

  1. The Chard allows you to can quart vs. pint jars.  In fact with it you have the ability to can, four quart jars, six pint jars, eight jelly jars or ten half-pint jars in one batch
  2. It also does a separate water bath or steam function for water bath canning
  3. It uses true petcocks and hence can be used at higher altitudes then the PowerPressure Cooker
  4. It has twenty built in safety features to ensure your safety.

Additionally while I brought this product to you first almost a year ago it was constantly sold out and would go up in price as quantity dropped.  Cary now seems to have supply side worked out and they are readily available for under 120 dollars with free shipping.

Remember you can always see the TSP Amazon Item of the day by just going to TspAz.com and by shopping at TspAz.com anytime you shop on Amazon you help support TSP and the work we do here.

P.S. – The PowerPressure Cooker XL is available in sizes like 6 and 10 quart but that is all about capacity, none of them are tall enough for the lid to go on with quart sized jars inside of them.  I really don’t recommend it.

P.P.S. – I  have changed the item name here to the “Chard/Cary 9.5 quart Smart Pressure Canner and Cooker – Item of the Day” because the same product has been marketed under both names.  This is because Chard was founded Richard Carey, or as the brand came from riCHARD Carey, you can read about that here on the chard website.  Just know if the product says Carey or Chard it is the exact same product, I have verified this with the manufacturer.

Utopia Kitchen Flour Sack Towels – Item of the Day

Every day I bring you an item on Amazon that I personally use or has been purchased by many members of the audience and I have researched enough to recommend.

Today’s TSP Amazon Item of the day is Utopia Kitchen Flour Sack Towels.  I am going to tell you that really any flour sack towel I have used has been fine, these are just the best price per towel I can find and they are on prime.

Lot’s of people like these because they are lint free and dry dishes nicely, etc.  Some people use them for embroidery.  I don’t really care about that with them, I use them rather than cheesecloth and think they make a much better alternative when making yogurt cheese.

Cheese cloth wears out fast and doesn’t really offer any advantages for this use, where as flour sack towels last a very long time, you just wash and dry them and use them over and over again.  I am a huge fan of getting good bacteria like lactobacillus into your diet in many different ways and none are more awesome than yogurt cheese.  In fact it may be the easiest and most delicous way to up  your probiotic game.

All you need to do to make basic yogurt cheese is take one of these towels and dump plain yogurt with “live and active cultures” into it, stir in a bit of salt, put it in a metal strainer over a bowl and wait 12 to 24 hours.  You will than have something akin to tangy cream cheese.  But I have never made it so bland.

While your yogurt is still very soft is the time to stir in herbs and seasonings.  Here are a few of my favorite things to add to it.

  • Fresh Basil and Fresh Garlic – this is the universal one everyone likes
  • Chopped Jalapenos and Garlic
  • Cracked Black Pepper, Rosemary and Thyme
  • Cracked Black Pepper and Almond Slivers
  • Lemon Zest and Chopped Walnuts

Honestly if you think it might taste good with cheese it will likely work.  How much, well as in most things I do it by eye, just remember you can always add more but can never take it out.  Here is a save if you ever over do anything, make a plane batch and blend it.

Also if you want your yogurt cheese a bit firmer, try this, take a large heavy can of something, put it on top of the towel and it will help expel a bit more of the whey.  Oh the whey that stuff is probiotic gold.  You can drink it and you will also find that your animals will like it too.

So if getting more probiotics into your diet is in your plans for 2017 give Utopia Kitchen Flour Sack Towels a shot.

Remember you can always find the TSP Amazon Item of the day by just going to TspAz.com and by shopping at TspAz.com anytime you shop on Amazon you help support TSP and the work we do here no matter what you buy.

Regency Soup Sock – Item of the Day

Every day I bring you an item on Amazon that I personally use or has been purchased by many members of the audience and I have researched enough to recommend.

Today’s TSP Amazon Item of the day is the Regency Soup Sock.  When I showed this to my son, his exact words were, “that thing is genius”.  Now my son didn’t quite learn everything I know about the kitchen but he seems to have paid attention to stuff that lets you stretch a dollar!  He is now 27 with two kids of his own, so that makes sense. 

So one thing we have always done in the Spirko house hold is make at least two meals from a chicken, some times we freeze the left over parts and do two or three frames into soup at one time.  More often than not though, it goes like this.  Make whole roaster chicken, have dinner, next day toss remains into a pot, boil and make a pot of chicken soup for dinner the next day.

This process is really easy and I will give my basic method in the PS below, but there is one issue.  When you simmer that birds frame long enough to make a good stock it sort of falls apart.  This leaves you to strain out tons of tiny bones and gristle and skin from everything else.

Enter the soup sock, put bird in sock, simmer till meat falls off the bones, remove sock, set aside, add veggies, let bird cool, pick off meat and add back to pot.  It saves a lot of time and one sock is plenty big enough for one bird, even if it isn’t a left over.  I have used these for duck stock as well, and making quail stock.  Real time saver there.

When I process quail I cut out the back bone with kitchen shears.  Sometimes we process 40 quail, one time we did 80, that is a lot of back bones!  Man those things when they come apart are tiny but they have tons of flavor so why toss them.  We put them in bags until we want to make up some quail stock or simply add them to chicken stock.  Into the sock they go, you just pull those things out and discard, the tiny amount of meat on them isn’t worth the effort.

One thing I really believe in is developing skills that make your life more cost effective.  When you an take a roaster chicken and feed four people twice with it, all of the sudden you can afford organic, pastured, etc, what ever the best you can get is in your area anyway.  So consider adding the Regency Soup Sock to your pantry today.

Note that the link I provided goes to a 9 pack of them, (three packs of three), at 9.37 with free shipping it makes them about a dollar a piece and the most cost effective way to buy them I have found so far.

Remember you can always find the TSP Amazon Item of the day by just going to TspAz.com and by shopping at TspAz.com anytime you shop on Amazon you help support TSP and the work we do here no matter what you buy.

P.S. – Jack’s Left Over Chicken Soup

  • One left over chicken frame (more if you want more soup)
  • About one bunch of celery
  • About one pound of carrots (tops on if available)
  • One large or two small onions
  • Dehydrated Onions
  • Handful of Garlic Cloves (coarsely chopped)
  • One Bunch Fresh Parsley (coarsely chopped) (use dried if you have to about one big hand full)
  • Two Bay Leaves
  • One Lemon (shh, this is a secrete)
  • Salt to Taste
  • Pepper to Taste
  • Keith Snows Northern Italian (if you don’t have it use equal parts Thyme, Oregano, Basil and Rosemary, it is different than Keith’s seasoning but just as good)  I do either or by eye, a big pinch or two of both.
  • Better Than Bullion Organic Chicken Base

Procedure

First – cut bottom off celery, carrot tops off (if you have them) and cut onion into quarters.  Cut lemon into quarters Put chicken in sock, add to pot cover with water.  Also cut the leafy tops off the parsley, tie the stems in a bundle.  Toss in celery bottom, carrot tops, quarter and toss in entire lemon, toss in parsley stems.  Add half the garlic, add bay leaves, about a table spoon of salt and a table spoon of black pepper bring to simmer.  When simmer starts dissolve about two teaspoons of Better Than Bullion Chicken base.  Simmer about two hours until meat will fall off chicken.

Second remove soup sock, and set in a bowl to cool.  Take out lemons, onions, carrot tops, celery bottom and discard.  Cut celery and carrots into bite sized peaces and add to pot.  Add dehydrated onions, I use about as many as fill a cap on a standard mason jar two times, because that is how I store them.  If the jar is wide mouth I use one cap full.   This is the time to add the Keith Snow seasoning or blend of Thyme, Oregano, Basis and Rosemary.  Also now add your reserved garlic and all the parsley leaves, coarsely chopped.   Bring back to a simmer.

Third remove bird from soup sock, pick all meat off bird and add back to pot.  Simmer until celery and carrots are tender, soup is done.  You can add more salt and pepper to taste.

If you want to do noodle soup, I highly recommend you cook your noodles in salt water in a separate pot.  Then add them to your bowl and ladle soup over them.

For paleo noodle soup (and I think it tastes better) make up some zucchini noodles, just do the salt treatment and don’t even cook them, just ladle hot soup on them in the bowl.  To learn how to make zucchini noodles see this post.

Final note I don’t really use a recipe, this is all easier than it sounds and every time I make it it is a little different do not sweat it and omit or add as you see fit.  The method is the key, not the ingredients list.

 

Microplane Classic Zester/Grater – Item of the Day

Every day I bring you an item on Amazon that I personally use or has been purchased by many members of the audience and I have researched enough to recommend.

Today’s TSP Amazon Item of the day is the Microplane Classic Zester/Grater.  I love this tool and use it often in my cooking.  The way I ended up with this is a friend who has helped with some of our workshops brought one to us as a gift.

My response was, I have always just used a small grater for zesting, her response was simply try this and you won’t use anything else.

Well she was dead on!  The three primary things I use this for are grating hard cheeses like Parmigiano-Reggiano, zesting rinds of citrus like limes, lemons and oranges and finely grating large spices like nutmeg.

These are all almost like cheat codes in the kitchen.  Here are two examples…

  • Slice up some peppers, zucchini, mushrooms and carrots and slice a big handful of green onion on the bias (that just means slanted) now add olive oil to a pan, season your veg with salt and pepper.  Saute the carrots for a minute or two, then add peppers and mushrooms and saute for about 3 more minutes, then toss in zucchini for about one minute.  Then shut off heat and add most of the green onions and stir in and serve.  Most would be happy, here comes the cheat codes!
    `
    When you start out also grate up finely some ginger and garlic and lime zest.  Add these when you add the peppers and mush rooms.  Then when you serve the dish, top with the reserved green onion and grate a small amount of Parmigiano-Reggiano on top.  The first dish is good, the second is great and it only takes about 2 minutes of extra time to make it happen.
    `
  • Next one, take a whole chicken and cut the back bone out of it with something like these shears.  While you are at it cut the wing tips off and reserve those.  Flatten the chicken out and rub with oil, then season both sides with salt, pepper, thyme and rosemary.  Par boil some potatoes, build a bed in a roasting pan with the potatoes, an onion chopped coarse, some carrots and celery.  Place bird on veggies and roast in oven at 425 till chicken is done.
    `
    While roasting boil chicken back, wing tips, neck, heart and liver with salt, pepper, celery and carrots to make a stock.  Do this in about 4 cups of water and add about 1-2 tsp of Better than Bullion Chicken base to it.  Strain stock and make it into a gravy with a flour and butter roux.  Serve chicken and veggies with gravy and enjoy a great meal!
    `
    Cheat codes, use zester when you are getting the chicken ready, and zest 2 lemons and 4 cloves of garlic, rough chop some fresh basil and parsley, mix thyme and rosemary with basil, parsley garlic and lemon to make a paste.  Gently separate the skin and stuff this paste in between the skin and meat under the breast and thy skin use about 75% of the paste this way.  Oil and season chicken as before, but rub remaining past on it along with the oil.  Place on veggie bed and squeeze lemons on top of chicken and veg.  With a little fresh herbs, garlic, lemon and proper use of this tool, you have gone from good meal to gourmet dinner.

There are so many ways to use this tool, just adding lime zest to your stir fry in addition to the customary ginger, garlic and chili is big boost in flavor for instance.  Zest a bunch of lemons, put in jar with vodka and allow to soak for bout a week, then strain out the zest and mix with 50% of the volume of simple syrup (equal amounts of sugar and water), you have high proof Limoncello at a fraction of the cost at a store.

Heck take some dark chocolate and zest it over that desert you are so proud of and take it to another level in appearance alone, not to mention taste.

One big thing is how well this tool shines at zesting citrus.  The key with citrus zest is you want all color and no white pith.  The colored part is teaming with flavor and amazing oils, the white pith is bitter.  This tool does an amazing job of taking off the part you want and leaving the rest behind.  So check out the the Microplane Classic Zester/Grater and for under 9 bucks you can take your cooking to another level!  For more ideas on using this tool, tune in to today’s show.

Remember you can always find the TSP Amazon Item of the day by just going to TspAz.com and by shopping at TspAz.com anytime you shop online you help support TSP and the work we do here no matter what you buy.

 

 

2 Inch Ice Cubes Molds by Home Complete – Item of the Day

Every day I bring you an item on Amazon that I personally use or has been purchased by many members of the audience and I have researched enough to recommend.

Today’s TSP Amazon Item of the day is 2 Inch Ice Cubes Molds by Home Complete.  I know this is a simple little item but I am excited about it.  It all stated when Bryan Black of ITS Tactical talked me into going to a cool Farm to Fork Place in Fort Worth called “The Bird Cafe”.  The food is good but the bar is what is amazing.

These bartenders are fricken chemists who do their work in adult beverages.  Anyway Bryan is like you have to get one of the “Old Fashioneds”.  I was like not really a fan, he insisted saying, look I am buying if you don’t like it order something else.

This is what I ended up with and I go back to the Bird Cafe every time we are downtown just to have one.  They don’t muddle fruit they use a combination of cherry branding, house made orange liquor, and a combination of three different bitters.  For bourbon they use Knobb Creek Rye.  Purists will scoff at this, but purists I don’t like your version, so suck on an orange peal!

Anyway I was like, I should try to cobble that together, still looking for the right brandy and can’t find some of the bitters, so for now using basic bitters but mine are damn tasty!

What I needed though was that massive 2 inch ice cube that didn’t melt fast and water down the drink.  So I went on Amazon and found the 2 Inch Ice Cubes Molds by Home Complete.  I didn’t do a ton of research on this product, I am not sure how one really could screw up  silicone ice tray but these were a good price, had a solid B on fakespot with 1300 plus reviews and 4.5 stars so that seemed good enough.

Man these things are great and not just for cocktails frankly any drink you want to chill but not water down.  Because they are silicone it is easy to push the cubes out.  I make up 16 at a time, pop them out and put them in a ziplock bag, refill and repeat.  Since they are so big you don’t use them up very fast.

There is another use for these guys too, stocks.  You know like chicken, beef, bone, etc. stock.  We had been using something like a silicone muffin mold for that but this is a LOT better, because it was designed for the purpose of making ice, translation you spill less.

I ordered the two pack for 9.99 but if you want a single one you can get that too.  Also if you want more for any reason, like they are bad ass gifts for instance they offer a discount.  Right in the item description you will see the following

Get 5% OFF When You Buy 2 (Coupon Code B3OR3JEH) -Get 10% OFF When You Buy 3 Or More (Coupon Code QHE8TC8V)

I didn’t notice that when I ordered mine but frankly again 16 of these cubes go a long way, still I will likely order some more, again what a great gift for any friends or family that enjoy making a good drink now and again.

So check out the 2 Inch Ice Cubes Molds by Home Complete and enjoy your next drink adult or otherwise without it being watered down, and hey get some of that stock put up as well.

Remember you can always find the TSP Amazon Item of the day by just going to TspAz.com and by shopping at TspAz.com anytime you shop online you help support TSP and the work we do here no matter what you buy.

P.S. – So were is the recipe for the drink?  Sorry guys and gals the above description is all I am giving until I get it down as good as they do it at the Bird Cafe, if you want one until then and you are near Fort Worth, go down and get one, you won’t regret it!

 

Nutri Ninja Pro – Item of the Day

nutriEvery day I bring you an item on Amazon that I personally use or has been purchased by many members of the audience and I have researched enough to recommend.

Today’s TSP Amazon Item of the day is the Nutri Ninja Pro.  Like many of you guys I also own Vitamix but my kitchen is small so it mostly stays off the counter and put a away.  Hence for small batch stuff, it is a pain in the ass to take out, use, clean and put away.

So when Dorothy said she wanted a small compact tool like this I went to work on research.  After a lot of reading and youtube reviews it came down to the Nutri Ninja or the NutriBullet.  In the end the Ninja had better reviews, more power and simply better designed blades.  And it is small enough that it lives on our counter top and doesn’t take up much space at all.

Dorothy uses this for smoothies but that really isn’t my thing.  Here is a great paleo drink though that I use mine for, get this Strawberry Limeade.  Oh don’t worry, forget that crap from Sonic with all the syrup and goop in it.  Try this.

Per gallon

  • Juice of 8 limes, about 8 ounces
  • 2.5 cups of slice strawberry (fills the Nutri Ninja to max fill on the big cup)
  • Water to fill
  • Stevia to sweeten to taste

How I make it.

I take a 1 gallon jug and squeeze 8 limes into it.  I then fill the Nutri Ninja big cup to the max fill line with sliced strawberries.  Frozen or fresh but if you use frozen make sure no sugar is added and let them thaw first or you will make a slurpie!   Fill the cup to the max fill line with water to help with extraction.  Process until all berries are destroyed.

Now the important part, take a metal strainer and put it over your jug.  Stain the berries though to get out all seeds and pulp, this takes about 2 minutes and you need to stir it a bit but it is totally worth it.  Fill the one gallon jug to the top with cool water and mix.

Serve over ice and sweeten by the glass to the taste of the drinker with liquid stevia drops.  For those counting carbs, here is the break down.

  • 8 ounces of lime juice have about 20 carbs
  • 2.5 cups of sliced strawberries have about 25 carbs
  • Total carb count is 45 carbs to the GALLON
  • That makes you ten, 12 ounce servings
  • Each 12 ounce serving has a total of 4.5 carbs
  • This drink is loaded with vitamins by the way
  • A 12 ounce can of coke has 42 carbs to the 12 ounce can
  • Translation you can drink a gallon of this or a single disgusting cola

Yes you can make this with lemons or other berries.  Just as you change berries check your carb count if you care.  Strawberry is about the biggest bang for the low carb buck.  But some others are just as good or close!

1 cup of Blackberry or Raspberry juice has about 45 carbs and that is plenty to the gallon of lemon or limeade.  Not as low carb as strawberry but still pretty low, you get 65 carbs to the gallon with that and that is 6.5 carbs per 12 ounces.

To go uber low carb, just leave out the Nutri Ninja and go with just lemon or lime aide, that gives you 20 grams to the gallon and only 2 grams to the glass!

Anyway guys I hope you have noticed that in my Amazon Item of the Day posts, I am trying to give you more than just an item, but some ideas that you can use if you already own it or use other things to acomplish the same thing with it as well.  That said if you are in the market for a high speed, bad ass, blending machine, give the Nutri Ninja a shot and you won’t regret it.  The price on these is now down to 60 bucks unless you want to make a fashion statement with a red one or something like that, it is a hell of a deal at 60 bucks.

PS – Yes this makes a damn fine margarita with a bit of good tequila in it.  You don’t even need to blend it frozen, just an ounce of tequila to about 10 ounces over ice, go EASY on it though!  Seriously.

Remember you can always find the TSP Amazon Item of the day by just going to TspAz.com and by shopping at TspAz.com anytime you shop online you help support TSP and the work we do here no matter what you buy.

 

Starwest Botanicals Organic Lemongrass – Item of the Day

Every day I bring you an item on Amazon that I personally use or has been purchased by many members of the audience and I have researched enough to recommend.

Today’s TSP Amazon Item of the day is Starwest Botanicals Organic Lemongrass.  This stuff is a key ingredient in my “Jacks Morning Blend Tea” which you can find outlined below.

I decided to list it as an item of the day today though because something different all be it similar is in my tea cup on my desk today as I type this.  Today I looked into my last jar of Jack’s Morning Blend and sighed as there was but a bit of dust in the bottom.  Same as the day before!  Yesterday I just went out an grabbed a handful of mint from the garden for tea.

Today I stopped piking and went upstairs to make a new batch, and realized strait away I piked out also on ordering new herbs!  Very little mint, some chamomile, bit of lemon balm, decent amount of green tea and a ton of lemon grass is what I had to work with.  So I scrapped the mint and lemon balm and changed the ratio.

I came up with what I am now calling “Lemongrass 321 Tea”  Simply 321 is for a 3-2-1 ratio of three ingredients.  Here is how you make it, all parts measured by volume, not weight.

Jack’s Lemongrass 321 Tea

This may seem way similar but it is totally different and far beyond simply removing the mint and lemon balm.  First the star of the show is now the Lemon Grass, moved to first chair violin position it dominates the blend.  With a wonderful lemony taste and a grassy for lack of a better work character.

The Green Tea is in second chair now, bringing tannin and balance and a bit of caffeine to the party.  Everything is rounded out by the buttery finish of the Chamomile, which is about the only thing really similar to the original morning blend.  This is another one of those teas you have got to try.

Note that  you could substitute blackberry leave in the above 321 blend as well to go caffeine free but I have yet to try that.  Personally I think it would be good but not as close a substitute as the morning blend because the green tea in this plays a much bigger role in things.  For those that want the original morning blend recipe here is that one as well.

Jacks Morning Blend – Nine Mile Farms Tea

Let me tell you though why when there are so many options I choose Starwest Botanicals Organic Lemongrass over other brands.  It as always comes down to quality and value.  First at under 16 dollars a pound it is cost competitive with anything out there including many non organic options.

The big thing to me though is the product itself.  I have tried a lot of lemon grass that is supposed to be “cut and sifted” that looks a lot more like the siftings than the cuttings!  Not this stuff it is large and in charge, cut to about 1/4 to 1/2 inch pieces with almost no dust at all, not even in the bottom of the bag!

And folks a pound of lemon grass is a LOT of lemon grass, and this stuff does make a great tea all by itself by the way.  Don’t get me started on the packs of dust sold as “lemon grass tea” for 3-4 times the cost of buying this in bulk.  Not to mention that ground up powdery crap clogs up infusers and french presses and ends up with a bunch of it in your final product as well.

I like this so much right now I am working on a formula for a Lemon Grass Ginger Mead, but that recipe will come down the road and likely make use of some orange and lemon zest.  In any even check out Starwest Botanicals Organic Lemongrass today, I think you and your family will really enjoy it.

Remember you can always find the TSP Amazon Item of the day by just going to TspAz.com and by shopping at TspAz.com anytime you shop online you help support TSP and the work we do here no matter what you buy.