Frozen snacks with a healthy twist

Nothing is better than a cool snack on a hot summer day, but before you reach for that ice cream, consider some healthier frozen alternatives. The experts at the Food Network have some unique ideas to try.

— Avocado slices: Freeze up to 4 hours; sprinkle with chili powder and salt.

— Orange or grapefruit wedges: Freeze up to 4 hours.

— Iceberg lettuce wedges: Freeze up to 4 hours; dip in blue cheese or ranch dressing.

— Yogurt: Freeze in pop molds.

— Melon cubes: Freeze up to 4 hours.

— Applesauce: Freeze in ice cube trays.

— Grapes: Freeze individually or in bunches.

— Mango slices: Freeze up to 4 hours.

— Canned fruit: Try peaches, pears or pineapple.


Try one of these proven substitutions

When it’s time to get cooking in the kitchen, few things are more frustrating than discovering a missing ingredient. Try one of these handy ingredient swaps from the Colorado State University Extension Office:

— 1 teaspoon baking powder = 1/4 teaspoon baking soda plus 5/8 teaspoon cream of tartar; OR 1/4 teaspoon baking soda plus 1/2 cup buttermilk, kefir or yogurt (decrease liquid in recipe by 1/2 cup)

— 1 cup corn syrup = 1 cup granulated sugar plus 1/4 cup water

— 1 cup sour cream = 1 cup yogurt; OR (in baking) 7/8 cup milk, 1 tablespoon lemon juice and 2 tablespoons butter or margarine

— 1 ounce unsweetened chocolate = 3 tablespoons cocoa powder plus 1 tablespoon butter, melted

— 1 egg (in baking) = 1/2 teaspoon baking powder, 1 tablespoon vinegar and 1 tablespoon liquid


Smart wine dispenser coming soon

Wine enthusiasts looking for the perfect pour and a “smart” way to preserve an opened bottle will soon have the ability with the introduction of Kuvee’s “smart wine dispenser.” The bottle looks and feels like a traditional wine bottle, but will have a touch screen and be able to connect to Wi-Fi. When a Kuvee bottle is inserted into the dispenser, users can then use the touch screen to find out what they are drinking, the wine history, how much is left, food pairings and tips. Currently the smart bottle is available for pre-order at www.Kuvee.com.


Eating ‘Fat Free’ will help you lose weight

Although foods labeled as “Fat Free” will help you consume less fat in your diet, fat free foods can do the opposite. “Fat Free” foods often contain extra sugar to offset the lack of fat and the extra sugar can mean extra calories. Weight gain from eating fat free foods can also occur because many people believe the misconception that the food they are consuming is healthier, which can lead to excess calories.

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