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Panasonic French Door Fridge

Written by lee on . Posted in Cookware & Appliances, Reviews

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I love it when I get to learn new things, particularly when it involves two of my favourite pastimes: food and eating!

Last week I was fortunate enough to be part of an incredible sushi making master class at Toko Restaurant in Sydney. We spent the morning learning from top chefs how to carve and create sashimi and I also had a hand at rolling out some sushi too… then eating it of course.

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This class was one of the added bonuses at the launch of Panasonic’s new range of eco-friendly fridges. The hero product on the day was the new French Door fridge, showcasing an impressive range of functional, intelligent and elegant technologies.

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Within the French Door fridge is a centralised vegetable case which offers an airtight design, keeping humidity levels high, halting the natural drying out process of foods over time. They’ve also introduced Vitaminsafe technology which operates within the vegetable crisper. This activates the natural defenses of fruits and vegetables to help keep them fresher for a longer period of time, saving you money and frequent trips to the supermarket.

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Panasonic also showed off a new premium range of bottom-mount fridges which comes with Prime Fresh technology in a special dedicated compartment. This new feature helps to maintain the flavor, texture and nutrients of produce that lives in the fridge by lightly freezing fresh meat and seafood to around minus three degrees Celsius. As food is only slightly frozen, it extends the life of your perishables while still maintaining nutrients, flavour and texture. A handy time saver that removes the need for long defrosting time.

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All of Panasonic’s fridges keep bacteria and nasties at bay. This is particularly useful if you tend to put things in the fridge and leave them for ages, and then are surprised to discover a soggy Christmas pudding from 2012, or last month’s Thai takeaway. Within the fridge is an Ag Clean silver coated filter which cleans the circulating air to kill 99% of mould and bacteria inside the refrigerator. That’s good news for you, but not such good news for your long-standing fridge dwellers.

Another great environmental aspect of the new range of fridges is that the cooling systems evenly distribute chilled air from the rear panel throughout the refrigerator for gentle cooling, maintaining a constant temperature.

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Energy consumption is reduced due to the four Econavi intelligent sensors that actively monitor usage patterns, lighting and temperature. Once these have been established by this very clever technology, your fridge energy output can be adapted to your unique usage patterns, enabling you to have the most efficient operation of your fridge and also save money on energy bills. And we all want a bit more of that!

The sleek, modern and functional designs with touch controls and recessed curved handles are seamless and good looking enough to complement any kitchen. If you’re in the market for a new fridge, I’d recommend this gorgeous range.  Find out more here.

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UltraStream Hydrogen Rich Water Ionizer and Filter

Written by lee on . Posted in Cookware & Appliances, Reviews

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As you probably know by now, I believe money spent on kitchen appliances is money spent investing in your health. People are increasingly turning to organic food for its health benefits, but still constantly sipping on tap or bottled water, which is known to contain traces of heavy metals and pesticides. Recently one bottled water company recalled thousands of bottled found to contain e-Coli!

One of the keys to health and longevity is the management and disposal of acidic waste products from our bodies. Alkaline ionised water filters remove many of the harmful contaminants found in tap water and enrich the water with health-promoting alkaline minerals such as calcium, magnesium, sodium, and potassium. These minerals can help make your body more alkaline and restore good overall (especially digestive) health.

I was lucky enough to test and review the sleek silver UltraStream Hydrogen Rich Water Ionizer and Filter whilst doing my Heal Your Gut program. I wanted to ensure the tap water I was drinking didn’t contain harmful contaminants that could irritate an already sensitive stomach and prolong my gut-healing recovery. Sure, you can buy a cheap water filter but when you see what the new technology water systems like this one give you it is a better investment into your health. I believe that water is the one element that reaches every part of my body, yet most people are dehydrated.

The thing I love most about the UltraStream is how easy it is to install and use. It’s also much more affordable when compared to other water ionisers on the market. However, this doesn’t mean you’re compromising on quality.

The UltraStream is the first ever natural water ioniser lab tested to infuse massive amounts of beneficial hydrogen gas into your purified drinking water. In the lab tests it was shown to give almost four times the filtration efficiency and molecular hydrogen production than other filters and ionizers.

It provides free ‘on tap’ antioxidant, anti-inflammation and anti-allergy molecular hydrogen in every glass. There are more and more scientific studies of the health effects of molecular hydrogen in drinking water emerging every day – now over 400 since 2007. The water it releases will also be much more alkalinising for the body than tap water, with a pH (acidity level) ranging between 8.5-10.

It’s designed in Australia – the only natural non-electric water ionizer invented by Australian company, AlkaWay. You’re also upping your magnesium, something Australian soils are terribly low on. Magnesium plays a pivotal role in controlling over three hundred biochemical reactions in the body.

It’s not only what this filtration system puts in but also what it takes out (fluoride, chlorine and chloramines, heavy metals, pesticides and many other nasties) that makes it a worthwhile purchase.

The UltraStream is also one of the most compact and attractive filters I’ve seen so you won’t have to hide it away when guests come over. On the contrary, you’ll want to show this baby off! You even have the option to fit it under the kitchen sink with a kit made specially for the UltraStream.

If you'd like to purchase an UltraStream all Supercharged Food followers have a bonus. We’ve negotiated free shipping anywhere in Australia. Just go to www.alkaway.com.au and click on UltraStream and use super55 when prompted for a coupon.

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NESCAFÉ Dolce Gusto Coffee Machine

Written by lee on . Posted in Cookware & Appliances, Reviews

pc_600x450 Catching up with friends over a barista made coffee in your local café is always fun but now you can bring the party back home anytime of the day and show off your barista skills at the same time.
NESCAFÉ Dolce Gusto coffee machines are snazzy and super light-weight.  I was fortunate to review the stylish Dulce Gusto CIRCOLO which comes with its own Play & Select wheel. This means all you need to do is simply turn the selection wheel to your desired setting. With the push of a button and a few café like sounds you’ll be sipping a perfectly poised and consistently tasty café-style drink.
The CIRCOLO is not only is simple and quick to use, but it’s also stylish, compact and versatile and looks especially cute on my kitchen bench.  The other good news is that it’s a fast worker and only takes seconds to make a delicious A-grade coffee.
I’ve been enjoying the decaffeinated capsules but if you’re looking for a 3pm caffeine hit there’s a huge range of coffee capsules including espresso, cappuccino, chai tea latte, hot chocolate and many more. There’s also a great range of iced capsule options which are a great fix for the warmer months when you’re looking for a refreshing chilled drink.
Whatever your budget, NESCAFÉ Dolce Gusto has a matching machine. With six different models, ranging in price from $99.00 to $229.00, I’m sure you’ll be able to find something that suits your needs.
NESCAFÉ DOLCE GUSTO capsules can be purchased from Coles, Woolworths, IGA, Harvey Norman, Big W and Target, as well as other major retailers and online.
All NESCAFÉ® Dolce Gusto® capsules can now be recycled via a partnership with experts TerraCycle®.
For more information about the range visit www.dolce-gusto.com.au  

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Thermos® Stainless Steel Vacuum Insulated Food Jar

Written by lee on . Posted in Cookware & Appliances, Reviews

Thermos-Stainless-King-Food-Flask-0.47-Litre-Blue I’m excited to be reviewing the Thermos® Stainless Steel Vacuum Insulated Food Jar.
I personally use this product to carry around foods and employ it religiously whenever I’m doing my Heal Your Gut program as it’s the perfect vessel to transport around soups and mashes without having any accidents on my travels.
Using a Thermos® ensures that every single one of my recipes stays conveniently warm or chilled and ready to eat whenever I need it. Because the seal is leak proof, you can pop it in your bag without fearing the worst and it has maximum temperature retention, keeping food hot for up to 7 hours and cold for up to 9 hours for those chilled drinks you want to keep cool in summer.
I tend to avoid using plastic where and whenever I can so Thermos® is the perfect option for anyone wanting a spill-proof vessel to carry fibre rich soups, hot drinks and mashes to work or if you’re travelling on the go.
Thermos® is the leading manufacturer of insulated food and beverage products worldwide and has been for over one hundred years so you can really trust that the quality and usability is top notch.
I love the fact that the jar is really functional and also stylish too.  I have the dark blue one and it looks truly gorgeous.  It has an unbreakable stainless steel interior and exterior so you know that it’s going to last the distance and it comes with a cute full size stainless steel folding spoon.
You don’t have to worry about the feel of it either, it’s beautifully cool to the touch when filled with hot liquids and sweat proof when you ferrying cold beverages from A to B.  It has a wide mouth making it easy to fill, eat from and most importantly clean when you get back home to the wash basin.
The Thermos® Stainless Steel Vacuum Insulated Food Jar can be purchased here.   (RRP: $29.99)  

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Curtis Stone and his new Pizza Stone!

Written by lee on . Posted in Cookware & Appliances, News, Reviews

CurtisThis week I chatted to the lovely Curtis Stone who is back in Australia to launch his cooking range into Coles stores.  One of the really exciting new cookware tools he has developed is a handy pizza stone, which is the perfect platform for making healthy gluten free pizzas. 

What’s interesting about using the stone is that it prevents you from getting a doughy result underneath and because you heat it up in the oven before-hand, it crisps up the base of the pizza by holding in and then dispersing the heat, making it crunchy on the bottom and giving you a melt in the mouth softness on top. It’s affordable too and for just over $20 you can make your own healthy wood-burning-oven like pizza without breaking the bank. 

pizzaSo how does it work?

-the pizza stone is pre-heated in the oven
-the dough gets a jolt of heat when it hits the stone
-the heat of the base helps the pizza cook quicker and cooks the dough through
-to get a crisp crust without a stone you need to cook the pizza longer, which usually means hard crust and overcooked toppings
-Pizza stones are also great for making homemade breads, heating up flatbreads and preparing pita!

I asked Curtis a few questions about what he’s been up to since he was last in Australia. 

How's your trip back to Oz been?

Fun so far, I’ve just spent the last couple of days acclimatizing my wife Lindsay and baby boy Hudson to the weather and the culture here.  It’s been so fantastic to be able to spend time with cousins and grandma! They’ve all been having such a great time getting to know each other.

What do you miss about being home?

I really miss my family and I also miss our Aussie sense of humour.  Sometimes in America I tell a joke and they don’t really get it or they think I’m being a bit strange, we’re used to a ribbing kind of humour in Oz and I like it so it’s great to be back and get a sense of that and have a laugh and a joke. 

What made you decide to become a chef?

From a really early age I‘ve always loved to eat and food is on my priority list. Ok so the truth is sometimes I like to eat off other peoples plates! That’s how much I love food. I feel so fortunate and lucky to have been able to follow my passion and work with food.

What’s the healthiest dish you like to cook?

Depends on the season really but at the moment we are in summer, so raw ingredients such as salad, kale, asparagus, grilled veggies, avocados with a bit of sherry vinaigrette is filling my plate right now.  The addition of avocado makes the dressing so creamy if you mush it up.  Granted it’s not the prettiest salad but it tastes amazing.

I’ve just released a kid’s recipe book and I know you have a little boy, do you make all of Hudson's food and what does he like to eat?

Lindsay and I both cook for him and he just loves seafood, he really enjoys eating proteins so when I watch him eat he likes to eat his salmon first and then he’ll eat his veggies afterwards.  It’s been a really interesting journey becoming a parent and trying to figure out his taste buds.

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What's the best thing about being a dad?

Watching the development of Hudson has been incredible.  I also enjoy seeing Lindsay interact with him too.

I read that you were instrumental in getting more ethical products onto the shelves in Coles, such as sow stall free pork and no added hormone beef  tell us a little bit about that and has it been a hard process?

Yes it has been a very big food project that I’m very passionate about and have been working with Coles for a long period of time to make positive changes.  We are working on continuing to have locally sourced seasonal fruit and vegetables in store and as much Australian produce as possible. Coles currently source 96% of their fruit and vegetables from Australian farmers.   We are also trying to educate consumers to eat and shop seasonally so for example there isn’t a demand for cherries out of season whereby they would need to be purchased from overseas.  The ethical and sustainable meat products that we have introduced has involved a massive restructure of the whole industry and we are working together to bring about big scale change.  It involves talking to farmers about different ways that they can build their infrastructure and put an animal’s welfare as a priority, but as you know, major change does take time to implement. 

So tell me a bit about your new pizza stone, why did you decide to create it?

I really want to empower people to cook at home and make it easy for them to do so.  I am also working with Coles to bring a new product each month into stores, there’s going to be a wok soon and a roasting dish which is easy to use and affordable.

What's your favourite pizza recipe and do you have a healthy version?

My favourite pizza is a homemade one which would have artichokes, olives, Portobello mushrooms, I made one this morning with ingredients that were on their last legs seasonally, may as well use them up whilst they are there!

The Curtis Stone Everyday Pizza Stone is available at Coles stores from September 18th, 2013 for $21.70.

For a deliciously healthy gluten free pizza try this one with a cauliflower crust.

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Lee xo

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Eco Switch

Written by lee on . Posted in Cookware & Appliances

The EcoSwitch® is designed to reduce a household's and businesses electricity bills by cutting out the standby power of electrical appliances. Not only will households save money, they'll also save the planet!

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Thermomix

Written by lee on . Posted in Cookware & Appliances

This all-in-one food processor and cooker chops, beats, mixes, whips, grinds, kneads, minces, grates, juices, blends, heats, stirs, steams and weighs food, as well as cleaning itself when it’s done. ‘The world’s smallest, smartest kitchen!’

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