Healthy Catering Alternatives That Are Just So Hip

Indeed, mobile cart vendors are hip to the issues around veganism and animal-based foods. The great news is food ingredient manufacturers are on board, too.

Do gourmet tacos – the kinds served at events in mobile carts – require animal products? They don’t if you use the right vendor.

Chalk this up to companies that know their market – vegans in California in particular are more numerous than just about anywhere else – as well as the advance of food supply companies that are developing great products.

Driven by concerns about human health as well as the health of the planet, meat and cheese alternatives are finding their way into both food stores and food vendors. It needs to deliver on taste, texture and overall appeal. Fortunately, a handful of companies have learned how to do this very well. Chilterns Catering for one is a healthy catering company based in Sydney.

They take the key nutrients found in both animal and vegetable products – amino acids, fats, carbohydrates, minerals and water – but source these things only from plants. For example, a not-chicken strip can be made with protein isolates, peas, sunflower oil, soy, carrots, vinegar, spices, garlic and onion (as well as flavorings, salt and colourings). The result, nutritionally speaking, is a complete protein in quantities equivalent to those in a comparable-size portion of chicken.

Tacos are often made with ground beef, and there is a vegan substitute for this as well. With half the fat of ground beef, a crumble-like ingredient is made of peas, oils (canola, sunflower), rice, tomato, spices (marjoram, basil, pepper, thyme, rosemary) and lemon juice.

More On Healthy Catering Ideas

Vegan cheese must meet taste, texture and “stretch-ability” expectations of diners, whether in tacos, pizzas or other preparations. Again, pea proteins are typically mixed with other ingredients (tapioca starch, palm fruit oil, brown rice syrup, seaweed/carrageenan, among others) to achieve diner expectations.

In each case, the differences between food service companies that fail to offer vegan choices and those that do are meaningful. A vegan generally is so for reasons that go beyond personal diet: it’s about how animals are treated, how they are raised, and the amount of the earth’s resources required to raise livestock. A vegan considers the prodigious use of agricultural land required to raise cattle, pigs and chicken as hugely outsized relative to that required to grow vegetables. And with increasing information on the over-use of hormones and antibiotics in feedlot conditions (where cows, pigs and chickens live, particularly in the weeks immediately preceding slaughter), the vegan is concerned with the amount of those factors entering their body and the waste stream that follows. By patronizing the company with vegan taco catering carts, the diner knows they are working with an enterprise that shares their values.

When a taco catering company that provides vegan taco catering competes with animal-products alternatives.

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Repair Work Of Burst Pipes In An Emergency

If you have ever had a water pipe burst, you will know that a flooding situation is a definite emergency, that requires immediate attention. Without a quick and abrupt solution being applied to remedy the water flow, you could face up to thousands of dollars of damage to your property in very short time indeed.

Burst Water Pipes Can Be Costly

A complicated plumbing issue like this can be quickly fixed by a professional plumber with all the right tools on hand. In some cases, these pipes are located underground as well as you may not see any type of symptoms of the burst or leaking pipeline till there’s large damage done to your property.

You might notice an increase in your water costs and also if there’s no rational reason for it, you could possibly have a burst pipeline. Or like the security camera footage video above, a burst water pipe can be an instant catastrophe.

Burst pipes could trigger structural damage to your house if not remedied quickly, over the long-term, it could create increasing damp, weakness in your home’s form and mold issues. The very best thing to do when you see a large increase in water use, flooding, dampness or mold is to call our group at Service Heroes.

Burst pipes can cause the below issues

  1. Flooding
  2. Architectural damage as a result of wetness
  3. Increasing Damp
  4. Mould issues

Our plumbing team are composed of highly seasoned, certified plumbers who are offered 24/7 to figure out your burst and also leaking pipes concern Sydney wide. It could require us to dig to repair your pipes, either means, we have the tools and knowledge to take care of any kind of burst water pipes problem.

Call our expert group currently to arrange a plumbing technician on site as soon as feasible anywhere in Sydney.

Reasons To Hire An Electrical Contractor

If you’re building a house or adding on an addition, you may be considering hooking up the electricity yourself. This isn’t the best idea for you to do. In many cases, you may want to call a Chicago electrical contractor to come in and take care of the job for you. Why? Here are a few of the main reasons you should hire a professional electrician or electrical contractor to come in and take care of your electricity issue.

Injuries are common when amateurs are working with electricity. This is something that a lot of people don’t think about or consider – amateurs and electricity really don’t mix very well. If something goes wrong and you have to fix it, you have a high chance of getting shocked. This could result in some pretty severe injuries, and even death. Obviously, if you have experience and know what you’re doing, you have less of a chance of getting hurt, but many times it’s just better to call someone that has the tools and experience to prevent injury and death.

Electrical contractors can install and inspect the systems that they’re putting into place in your home. Electrical contractors know your local, state, and national rules and regulations that have to be followed in order for a building to pass inspection. On top of that, most contractors have the training that they need in order to inspect the job when it has been completed. So, if you want to get it done correctly the first time, and get it inspected so that it passes when you’re ready to get your house going again, an electrical contractor will be able to take care of that for you without a lot of hassle and fuss.

They can answer any questions that you may have and adapt easily if an issue comes up. Electrical contractors have experience and they have a lot of knowledge and training that has gone into what they do. If you’ve got questions, then they will be able to give you a knowledgeable answer. Sure, you could find the same answers online, but there’s still nothing better than hearing it firsthand from a professional that knows what they’re doing. On top of that, they may find that there’s something that has to be changed or switched around because of the way that you’ve constructed the building. A contractor will be able to make the appropriate adjustments and changes without losing a lot of time in the process; an amateur can’t really do that.

It will usually cost you much less money in the long run. Electrical wiring and systems are hard to set up, and there are a lot of complications that may arise while you’re putting everything together. That being said, you could end up making some pretty big mistakes in the process if you try to do it yourself. And, if the mistakes are large enough, then you could end up dropping a lot of cash in order to be able to correct them. So, spend the money and make sure that it gets done correctly the first time instead of wasting more cash than necessary.

Are you convinced yet? If so, you will want to make sure that you look around for the best Chicago electrical contractor that you can find. Experience, competitive prices and flexible hours are key to ensuring that you will have a job well done. Contact us today to hire a Chicago electrical contractor and to get started on whatever job you have.

Driveway Gates An Ideal Way To Finish Off Your Drive

When it comes to your home, you want it to be as unique as you are as first impressions are very important. It makes sense to start with the part of your house that everyone will see first – your gates and railing. Wrought iron driveway gates are an ideal way to finish off your drive. You can give your home that wow factor with new iron driveway gates.

Driveway gates and fences will enhance the beauty, privacy and security of your home. A driveway gate extends your home security to the boundaries of your property, and in a time where people are increasingly worried about their security adding an iron gate at the driveway entrance has become popular. Having a secure fence and gate can be a great comfort, particularly if your house lies in an area of heavy traffic. In addition to the security benefits, adding a gate also contains animals, clearly marks property lines and makes a huge aesthetic improvement to your home.

When you choose an iron driveway gate for your home you can be confident in the knowledge that they are known for their strength and endurance. This makes them less likely to break or bend. With today’s power coating options, wrought iron gates can become just as rust resistant as aluminium. Iron gates can be matched with existing fences, pedestrian gates and access control systems.

It can be very frustrating to finish a long commute only to have to get out of the car, open a gate, drive through it, get out of the car again and close the gate. With this in mind another trendy feature for your iron driveway gates is to install an automatic gate opener. Electric gates provide indispensable convenience, allowing a gate to be opened without ever having to leave your car and therefore eliminating all those cumbersome steps.

When purchasing electric gates you need to consider a few options. The most obvious is deciding whether you want your driveway gate to open by sliding or swinging outwards. Swing gates are more aesthetically pleasing but you must take into account the opening radius depending on the length of the gate. Sliding gates will eliminate this issue as they retract rather than swing out.

You will also need to consider how much power is required to open and close your driveway gate. The amount of power is dependent on the size of your gate, how it opens and how many times it will need to be opened each day.

Finally, how will your gate be accessed, and by how many users? Electric gates are operated by a controller which sends a signal to the opening mechanism.

There are several options for your controller:


•Wired keypads

•Keypads with intercoms

•Key card operated controllers

•Controllers operated by remotes or telephones

Each of these features will affect the price and your final decision should be based on your budget and personal preference. Once you have taken all these points into consideration you can narrow down your options and choose the best Driveway Gates for your specific needs.

There is an amazing company called The Ironworks who have over 40 years experience in this field and will definitely be able to provide a driveway gate to your exact specification. Visit their website to see exactly what they have to offer.

How to Test a Fuse

Most of us have experienced a blown fuse at one time or another and simply replaced it. Some fuses, though, aren’t cheap and if a replacement isn’t handy it means a trip to the auto parts or home improvement store. As a professional electrician I have had to test many fuses over the years; it is a standard part of troubleshooting techniques rather than simply replacing fuses that I don’t know for sure are blown.

Better to test a fuse first to see if it is actually blown before making a special trip to purchase and install a new one. Testing a fuse to see if it is actually blown is a very simple task, requiring a minimum of inexpensive tools, and can save both money and time.

A fuse is basically a small piece of wire inside a special housing that is designed to burn in half when an electrical overload is present. All we have to do is determine if that wire is still intact. Some fuses have a small window where the wire can be seen but the view is generally poor, the wire is often very small and mistakes can be made. A 30 second test is foolproof and will tell the tale with no possibility of error.


Gardner Bender GCT-3304 Continuity TesterFuse Testers

At it simplest, a fuse tester is nothing more that a a device to check for continuity. It may be in the form of a multimeter, a continuity tester, or a dedicated fuse tester.

In all cases, though, the idea is to send a small current through the fuse; if it passes through the fuse the fuse is good. If it does not the fuse is blown and needs replacement. This means that a battery is necessary to provide that small current and every fuse tester will have a battery in it.

If a tester shows that a fuse is blown, the next step is to check the tester. This is accomplished by touching the test leads together or, in the case of testers without leads, to put a piece of metal (wire, coin, dinner spoon, anything metal) across the probes. If it does not indicate “good” the battery probably needs replacing.

Using a Continuity tester

Continuity testers will have two test leads and a small light that will light up if the leads are touched together. To test a fuse simply touch one lead to each of the electrical contacts on the fuse; if the light bulb lights up the fuse is good.

Testing a Fuse with a Multimeter

A multimeter again has two leads just like a continuity tester. However, there are many settings on a multimeter to measure amperage, voltage and resistance in several different ranges. Some multimeters are autoranging (no need to choose a range), some are digital and some are analog meters with a needle to indicate the reading. With all multimeters the first step is to set it to measure resistance, or Ω. If different ranges are available, choose the lowest range (K means thousand on the dial, so 2K equals 2000) – usually around 200. Like a continuity tester, touch one probe to each contact on a fuse and observe the reading. A very low reading of 1 ohm or less means the fuse is good; if it is blown the reading will be infinite, or the maximum the meter will display. An intermediate reading of several ohms probably means you aren’t making good contact; wriggle the probes on the fuse contacts or clean them and try again.

Dedicated Fuse Testers

In general, these testers will have a light that lights up if the fuse is good. There will always be some method to touch a probe of some kind to each contact on the fuse. Make sure to read and follow the manufacturers instructions with dedicated testers as different fuse testers may operate differently.

How to Check Various Fuses

Testing Plug Fuses

Plug fuses are the screw in type of fuse that were once common in homes before circuit breakers became available. Many plug fuses have a window in the front; if the window is black or the metal inside is melted the fuse is blown. Over time, however, the windows become hard to see through and testing is necessary.

Plug fuses have one contact on the far end and either the threaded section (if metal) or a small piece of metal at the top of the threads is the other contact. One probe needs to be touched to each contact to check the fuse.

Note that the photo to the right of using a multimeter to test a plug fuse is showing the fuse from the back side; the side that screws into the fusebox.

The fusible link is generally visible inside the fuse and it is sometimes easy to see if the fuse is blown. As a double check, though, it never hurts to actually check with a meter to see if it is actually good or not.

The two blades that were inserted into the fuse box are the contacts. Touch a probe to each of these contacts to verify if the fuse is good or blown.

Mini blade fuses use the same procedure; they are simply smaller while retaining the same basic construction.

How to Test Cartridge Fuses

While a very few cartridge fuses have a window in the side where it is sometimes possible to see if the fuse is blown this is rare. Cartridge fuses nearly always need to be tested with a meter to know if they are good or not.

Although there are literally thousands of different cartridge fuses they all have one thing in common; there is a metal on each end where electrical contact is made with the fuse holder. These metal ends are the contacts; touch a probe to each end of the fuse to test it.

The small AGC glass tube fuse commonly found in automobiles is a type of cartridge fuse; larger ones are primarily different only in that they are constructed of paper or other material instead of glass. They are tested just as the glass fuse is in the photo to the right.

Electrical Shorts – How to Fix Them

When your home has an electrical short this means that a problem has occurred because a path has accidentally been created in the circuit and generated a connection where one was not before. Electrical current will follow the path of least resistant so it would follow a new path instead of the one that was established in the circuit originally. This can cause a high current flow. This circuit is also referred to as a short circuit. Generally, an electrical short will happen if bare wires cross each other. An example of this problem would be when the older outlets insulation wears away. When this happens the wires are allowed to come in contact with each other. This is a very serious problem and one that should be looked at by an electrician, especially if you have no prior knowledge of working with electricity.

When you have an electrical short it causes a rate of current that is high, which in turn results in the heat being generated. This can cause a fire or just sparks. It will generally generate a popping noise that is very distinctive when you have an activated circuit. The electricity will follow the new connection that the electricity has found and suddenly the circuit is overloaded with energy. Flames or smoke may appear. The electrical short is strong enough it could cause the insulation to melt on the electrical wiring. It could also cause circuit board damage.

Worm insulation is just one reason why this short can happen. It can happen when the circuit is not properly wired. An example of this is when somebody does not notice that the outlet’s metal lining connects with a wire. They can also be created by storm damage, which can cause many electrical shorts that can overwhelm the electrical grid when branches and trees fall on the power lines. The designers of circuits know that shorts are a hazard that commonly happens. Because circuit designers know that shorts commonly happen many circuits today are designed with overload protection. When this protection detects a rate of high current it will trip off the circuit to help reduce any risk of damage. If you have ever experienced blown fuses or tripped breakers this is a result of the overload protection working.

The cause of an electrical short needs to be found and fixed before it causes a fire that can cause severe damage. If you do not know how to find out the cause, call an electrician to detect and fix the electrical short before it causes a fire.

Plumbing – Clogged Pipes and Drains – A Quick Cheap DIY Fix

We have all been frustrated by a clogged drain or pipe. Plumbers may be good at their job, but they are also quite expensive. And if you try calling one out on a weekend, after hours, or anywhere near a holiday…forget it, your fees just doubled at minimum. But not all clogs need a plumber and you can fix them up in minutes all by yourself.

If you have women in your house and they have long hair, then the biggest clogs you probably deal with are the hair clogs in the shower drain. we lose about 50 – 100 hairs per day and many of those are lost while bathing or brushing our hair. (And no, stopping these two tasks won’t cause your hair not to fall out. it is a natural process of our bodies)

If the ladies in your home have long hair, then when they lose their hair, there is a lot more hair being lost and going down the drain. This can quickly clog up drains and pipes and make for a frustrating day. Some ways to know if your shower drain is clogging up with hair is if your water begins to drain out of the tub or shower slower. The clog is preventing the water from flowing quickly and slows it down. You will find yourself standing in an inch or two of water as you shower because the water is backing up. This can also happen in your sink if you shave over your sink and wash the hairs down the drain. It takes much longer for a sink clog to occur with simple shaving than it does for a shower.

Calling out the plumber can cost as little as $50 for the clog problem or could be a few hundred. But you can unclog it for little cost or even for free yourself.

Plumbers Snake

Plumbers will use a combination of some type of professional strength drain cleaner like Drano, and a snake to unclog your drains and pipes. No not the kind you run screaming from, but a long flexible metal rod that is twisted up like a spring. The snake is pushed down the drain while turning it to get any items in the drain to wrap around the snake. The plumber then pulls the snake out and the stuck items come out with it. He may do this several times to get it all or at least the bulk of it. You can do this too!

Most stores sell plumbing snakes for as little as $10 for a simple one. You can also take a wire hanger from your closet and using pliers twist it up at the bottom to make your own make shift snake. Drano now makes a combo pack that gives you the snake and the drain cleaner in one box.

4 prong drain cover can be removed with a screw driver

 Almost all bathtubs have drain covers (those little metal plates over the drain) that can be removed. You can usually use your fingers to grip it and pull it out or you can use something thin like a flat-head screw driver to pop it up. If you have one that has super tiny holes in it then you can use a pair of tweezers to get the tip of the tweezers in one of the holes and pull it up. Any removable drain cover will come up fairly easy. They are meant to be removed so if you try a few good tugs and yours is not budging then you may have a non-removable drain cover and will have to call the plumber. This is extremely uncommon especially in homes.

Once you have the cover off, use either the snake you bought from the store or your home made version and slowly push it down the drain. Give it some wiggles as you do this to help it wiggle through the clog and grab it. Once you get to the bottom of the snake or as far as you can push it down, slowly pull it back up, giving it a slow twist as you pull it up to help keep hold of whatever gunk it has grabbed. Remove the gunk once you pull it out and repeat.

When nothing else comes up with the snake then you have probably gotten everything out and your drain is unclogged. Replace the drain cover and you are done!

If you are still getting a little bit each time then you have probably gotten the bulk of it out and there isn’t enough left for the snake to completely grab. If this is the case then at this point, put the cover back on the drain and grab your Drano. They all work well but if you have already gotten most of the clog out then there isn’t much for the Drano to sit on down there to dissolve.

Gel sticks to the pipes and gunk better

For this I would recommend the Drano Gel. It sticks very well to the sides of the pipes and they make it safe enough to use with septic tanks. (Always double check the labeling first if you have a septic tank. They make different kinds of gels.)

Pour the Drano Gel down the drain as directed by the instructions. Rinse it out as instructed on the bottle and you should see your clog problem gone.

If you get these hair clogs often there are a few things you can do to keep them at bay.

1. Buy a drain cover with super tiny holes that catch the hair before it has a chance to get down the drain.

2. Clean your drain cover every day.

3. Use a drain cleaner that is safe for frequent use, use it once a week or every two weeks to help prevent buildup. (If you have an aseptic tank check the bottle label and your tank instructions. Some septic tanks only suggest drain cleaners no more than once a month)

If you try all this and still have a problem then it may be that your drain or pipe has been clogging for some time and the problem is too big to fix by yourself. If this is the case then go ahead and call your plumber.

But to save money, call them on a weekday and nowhere near a Holiday if possible. Make the appointment for during their work hours so you wont have to pay more for their after hours service. Of course if the after hours fee is only an extra $25 and it would cost you $100 to take off work early, then it is more cost efficient to pay the extra $25.