Thursday, 28 August 2014

Apple Sable with Caramel Sauce

Apple Sable is French though I'm not sure what it means. What I do know is this recipe is yummy and because it uses apples it's practically, almost, nearly good for you ;)

You will need:
  • whole apples, one for each person
  • 6 cloves
  • 6 peppercorns
  • 1 cup sweet white wine
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • dollop of butter
  • 300ml cream
  • ice cream [optional]
Core and peel the apples leaving them whole. Pore 1 cup of sweet wine and 1 cup of water into a pot large enough to sit all the apples in (standing upright). Add the cloves, peppercorns and apples. Put the lid on the pot and bring to boil. Reduce heat and simmer until apples are tender all the way through.

To make the caramel sauce place the fry pan on the heat until you can feel the heat coming off it. Add the sugar and let it melt. Make sure it doesn't get too hot and burn. When fully melted remove from heat and allow to cool a little. Add a dollop of butter, pore in around 1/4 cup of cream carefully as the toffee will bubble and spit if still too hot. Stir well. Add more cream or butter if necessary. You're looking for a caramel coloured running sauce that doesn't set at room temp.

To serve strain the apples and make sure there are no cloves or peppercorns sticking to the apples. Place apples upright in separate bowls and pore the caramel sauce around the sides. Pore extra cream in the center of the apples allowing it to over flow down the sides and into the caramel sauce.

Serve with a scoop of ice cream and a glass of white wine (for he adults) [optional]


Wednesday, 13 August 2014

Media Watch For Savvy Consumers

One thing my son and I enjoy is watching commercials or infomercials and picking apart what they present.  I mean lets face it their claims can be pretty far fetched, if not bold faced lies, and they're allowed to tell all sorts of non-truths in order to sell a product.  There is no governing body holding them accountable to keep it real.

As far as governments and officials are concerned it is up to us savvy parents to protect our children from these ploys and we're meant to be smart enough to know a fraud when we see one.

We often hear things like:
If you don't want your children watching it turn it off.
If you don't want retailers selling sexy clothing to children don't buy it.
If you don't want your children to eat unhealthy don't buy fast food.
Put your money where your mouth is.
Vote with your money.

It seems easier said than done... because for the most part parents/adults are NOT making these important stands with their money by not buying this stuff.

Here are some of the commercials for example.

Detol - it's the little thing we do that make up our mission for health.
Sounds good enough.  Yet what Detol don't mention is that their products are anything but healthy.  They contain so many harmful chemical ingredients it's not funny!  These ingredients kill off our bodies natural defense systems and can cause contact dermatitis (aka overexposure).

Sensodyne - have an ad where the 'creator and developer' professes to people 'coming up to me' to thank him for inventing the toothpaste.  Really?  How the heck would anyone know who Sensodyne's developer is let along being able to recognise him on the street to say thanks.  If they're lying to me about that how can I trust them?

Neutrogena 'naturals' - again are anything but natural.  Neutrogena used harsh chemicals in their products and are tested on animals.  There is nothing 'natural' about that.

Age perfect extraordinary oil by L'Oreal.  Well I don't even know what the heck that means let along what extraordinary oil is but apparently it's going to make me 'age perfect'.  Hmmmmm?

Cornflakes - have a new ad where they tell us Cornflakes are high in iron, and with calcium (milk) "Imagine what Kelogs Cornflakes can do".  They neglect to mention their cereal is high in sugar and no amount of iron will counteract the damage all that sugar does to your children's (and your) bodies.

Colgate Total toothpaste commercial where a man and woman are approached and asked how clean their teeth are.  They're asked to go away brushing their teeth as normal except the lady it to use Colgate Total and they'll note the difference.  The following day their teeth are scanned and her teeth show less plaque.  The silly thing is when they show his and her teeth in the scanned pics they are exactly the same set of teeth.

Easy Off BAM - an interview with a woman starts off with her talking about how her children draw on the bath with soap and it's really hard to clean, spray on Easy Off BAM on the shower screen, love how it foams up with a wide spray, and just wipe off.  Hang on!  Thought she was talking about how the bath is hard to clean and now she's talking about how well the product cleans the shower.  Did it clean the bath or not?

Consider also the new free to air channels we now have.  All of them are about being 'better than you are' such as; a domestic goddess (vacuums, steam mops etc), beautiful (hair care products, skin care products), looking glamours (jewellery, clothing) and being FIT (exercise machines designed to sell to those who sit at home gaining weight watching infomercials).

Sarah & Jess are the same person, with one side altered to look like saggy boob.

Feeling crap about yourself yet?  Because that is what these ads are designed for.

It's all lies and manipulation designed to have you believing you're not good enough and all these gimmicks will have you looking GREAT in no time.  Take the Soup Diet man for example.  The picture of him before his soup diet is exactly (and I mean EXACTLY) the same and his after picture except for a computer generated gut drawn on to his body.  His arms are exactly the same fatness (in fact they're lean and muscular), as are his head, neck and legs.  Yet we're meant to believe (tricked) he lost all that weight from eating yummy soups day in day out for a week.

I would LOVE (with capitals) for more and more people to start voting with their money

So I ask you, how savvy are you as a parent or as an individual?  Do you buy into the bogus false ads?  Or do you see right through them and see them for what they truly are (lies and deception)?

That being said my son and I love these ads because it gives us something to chuckle over together and I'm teaching him how to be a savvy consumer.