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Food

Food

In a monastery tucked away in a quiet back lane of Bangalore, India, Benedictine monks of the Vallombrosian Order are using their European connections to meet rising demand for fresh, Italian-style cheese in this South Asian country.

Updated Jan. 24 at 8 a.m. ET

Dippin' Dots describes its product as "an unconventional ice cream treat that's remarkably fresh and flavorful, introducing the world to beaded ice cream" and "the original and unbeatable flash-frozen ice cream sensation." Donald Trump's press secretary, Sean Spicer, disagrees. For years, he has mocked the company and its "ice cream of the future" on Twitter.

Drowning your sorrows or celebrating last night's election results with booze? If fancy mixed drinks are your tipple of choice, there's no need to leave the house to imbibe. Craft cocktails are now coming to your mailbox.

As meal kits have gained market share — Technomic, a food consulting firm, estimates that the market for meal kit subscriptions will grow up to a total market of $5 billion by 2025 — cocktail subscription boxes have followed.

Halloween has come and gone, but piles of candy remain. You have two options: Eat it all and risk a serious sugar coma, or get seriously creative with some candy-themed science.

We asked employees at various science museums what experiments they like to do with leftover candy. Get crackin'.

Weeknight Kitchen: Chicken Shish

Nov 4, 2016

Serves 4 (makes 8 kebabs)

Ingredients

• 1 1/4 pounds skinless, boneless chicken thighs, cut into bite-sized pieces
• 4 tablespoons Greek yogurt
• 3 garlic cloves, crushed
• 1 1/2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
• 2 teaspoons dried oregano
• 1/2 ripe tomato, skinned and seeded
• 2 tablespoons olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
• Sea salt
• Lemon wedges, to serve

Directions

On a bright, blustery October morning in Clarkston, Ga., the sweet aroma of baked treats and brewing coffee flows out the windows of the fire engine-red food truck known as Refuge Coffee Co. parked at a street corner. A dozen or so eager customers mill about, converse and gradually fall into line.

Huddled over a hot griddle in the back of his food truck, Abdel Rahman Rahim al-Bibi doesn't hold back on the curry powder. He's frying up shish taouk — a spicy chicken kebab dish popular in the Middle East.

Aromas waft down the block, and a line forms on the city sidewalk next to al-Bibi's truck — office workers popping out for a quick bite, a mother and her two children, and a law student on his way home from the gym.

Gruel, glop, cooked mush. The English language has been less than kind in describing porridge. Which seems a tad ungrateful, really, considering that grains cooked in water or milk fed our earliest civilizations.

But now, this stalwart dish is staging a culinary comeback.

Think steaming, cumin-scented millet topped with coarsely grated Gruyere cheese. Buckwheat cooked in coconut milk, with buttered dates and cinnamon. Teff polenta garlanded with diced dandelion greens and freshly grated parmesan.

Donald Trump's slogan "Make America Great Again" is an easy one to adapt for whatever your cause. There are ones like "Make America Gay Again," "Make America Skate Again," "Make America Read Again," "Make America Fair Again." You get the idea.

Bakers, of course, had to get in on the action. How could you pass up "Make America Cake Again"?

Last summer, I went on Morning Edition to talk about the quest for a great-tasting tomato. And at the very end of the conversation, I confidently declared that no one should ever put tomatoes in the refrigerator. It kills the taste, I said. That's what I'd heard from scientists and tomato growers alike.

When you think of Chinese food in the U.S., fried rice, lo mein or General Tso's chicken may first come to mind.

But a new museum exhibition in New York City is trying to expand visitors' palates. It features stories of celebrity chefs like Martin Yan and home cooks whose food represents 18 different regional cooking styles of China.

Even though Marca Engman read countless books, watched YouTube videos and took a beekeeping class before installing her first hive in 2012, she knew she'd need help in the field.

"The whole idea of beekeeping was overwhelming," she recalls. "Every year is different and every hive is different."

Rather than working a backyard beehive solo, Engman installed her first hive in the community apiary at Hudson Gardens, a nonprofit garden near Littleton, Colo.

Eating well has many known benefits. But a good diet may not be able to counteract all the ill effects of stress on our bodies.

A new study, published in Molecular Psychiatry, suggests stress can override the benefits of making better food choices.

I fell for pho in Saigon in 1974, when I was 5 years old. When my family came to America in 1975, my mom satisfied our family's cravings for the aromatic beef noodle soup with homemade batches, served on Sundays after morning Mass. As Vietnamese expatriates, we savored pho as a very special food, a gateway to our cultural roots. When we didn't have pho at home, we went out for it in Orange County, California's Little Saigon, patronizing mom-and-pop shops that welcomed us with the perfume of pho broth.

For some, there's a a glam factor attached to the vegan lifestyle. And these days, there seems to be a growing chorus singing the praises of the environmental and health benefits of a plant-centric diet.

Serves 2 

Ingredients

• 2 Tbsp vegetable oil 
• 1 onion, diced
• 1 garlic clove, minced 
• 1 bunch kale, ribs removed, chopped
• Kosher salt
• 1 cup [170 g] quinoa, rinsed
• 2 cups [480 ml] vegetable broth
• 2 tsp gochujang 
• 1 Tbsp soy sauce, plus more as needed
• 1 tsp sesame oil
• 2 eggs
• 3/4 cup [150 g] kimchi, chopped, plus more as needed
• 1 green onion, white and green parts, thinly sliced 

Directions

Writer, actor and longtime NPR contributor Vertamae Smart-Grosvenor died Saturday at age 79.

Smart-Grosvenor contributed hundreds of commentaries to NPR between 1980 and 2013. She was famed for her culinary explorations and travels, including a 1983 visit to a place she loved: Daufuskie Island, S.C. In a 1983 special report for NPR, she described her feelings about the trip:

In Seattle, blackberries are as much a part of the view as the Puget Sound — the twisting brambles so ubiquitous, they're as likely to vex gardeners as delight them.

The tale behind the city's blackberries turns out to be equally tangled. It starts at the end of the 19th century, at a time when American life was changing dramatically.

People were moving from rural areas to towns and cities, including Seattle. Industrialization was creating a new middle class.

You've likely heard that dark chocolate is good for you.

Last year, researchers linked a regular chocolate habit to a reduced risk of heart disease.

And, as we've reported, compounds found in cocoa known as flavanols or polyphenols have been shown to improve vascular health by increasing blood flow.

Trust the Italians to meet disaster with food.

While nobody is making light of Wednesday's earthquake that struck Amatrice, a small town in the Appenine mountains about 70 miles as the crow flies from Rome, several independent efforts have sprung up to use the town's signature dish — spaghetti all' amatriciana — to help relief efforts.

Nestled among rolling hills and grazing cows, Elmore Mountain Bread in central Vermont is quintessentially pastoral. The setting is apropos, given the owners' recent decision to start grinding their own flour by stone — a veritable step back in time.

In 1977, Deborah Barsel, a bored assistant registrar at the George Eastman Museum in Rochester, N.Y., decided to try a fun side project. She would create a cookbook made up of recipes and images from famous photographers of the day. She sent letters to various artists and put an ad in the museum's magazine asking for submissions. In return, she received 120 photos, recipes and even a postcard from urban photographer John Gossage saying simply: "I eat out."

You've heard of the San Francisco gold rush. But that rush spurred another, lesser-known event: the egg rush. The legions of miners who swept into the region in the 1850s hoping to strike gold all had to be fed. And they needed protein to stay strong. But when food shortages hit, wily entrepreneurs looked for eggs in an unlikely source: the Farallon Islands.

Now, you can love your seafood and eat it, too. But first, you'll have to catch it. Fisherman Kirk Lombard's new book, The Sea Forager's Guide to the Northern California Coast, teaches the art, science, ethics and wisdom of fishing for your next meal in the ocean. Through wit, poetry and anecdotes, Lombard makes the case that the sincerest stewards of wild sea creatures are often those who intend to have them for dinner.

Jonathan Garaas has learned a few things in three seasons of backyard beekeeping: Bees are fascinating. They're complicated. And keeping them alive is not easy.

Every two weeks, the Fargo, N.D., attorney opens the hives to check the bees and search for varroa mites, pests that suck the bees' blood and can transmit disease. If he sees too many of the pinhead-sized parasites, he applies a chemical treatment.

Serves 6 

Ingredients

For the sauce 

• 3 tablespoons Thai sweet chili sauce 
• 3 tablespoons hoisin sauce
• 3 tablespoons light soy sauce 
• 2 tablespoons Sriracha
• 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
• 1 teaspoon sesame oil
• 1 1⁄2 tablespoons unseasoned rice vinegar
• 2 tablespoons minced garlic (about 4 cloves) 
• 1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger 

For the filling

Lisbon is a city of plazas, parks, overlooks and gardens. For more than a century, these beautiful public spaces were graced by Art Noveau and Moorish-style kiosks — small, ornate structures that provided chairs and shade and served traditional Portuguese snacks and drinks.

Weeknight Kitchen: Wasabi Steak

Jul 22, 2016

Serves 4 

Ingredients

• 2 tablespoons mirin
• 2 tablespoons soy sauce
• 1 teaspoon brown sugar
• 1 teaspoon sesame oil
• 400 g (14 oz) sirloin or rump steak, cut into 1–2cm (1/2 - 3/4 inch) slices
• 1 tablespoon rapeseed oil
• 150 g (5 1/2 oz) watercress or pea shoots
• 200 g (7 oz) asparagus, shaved
• 150 g (5 1/2 oz) cooked edamame beans
• A bunch of spring onions, cut into strips
• 1 tablespoon black sesame seeds
• 1 tablespoon sesame seeds

Dressing

Weeknight Kitchen: Wasabi Steak

Jul 22, 2016

Serves 4 

Ingredients

• 2 tablespoons mirin
• 2 tablespoons soy sauce
• 1 teaspoon brown sugar
• 1 teaspoon sesame oil
• 400 g (14 oz) sirloin or rump steak, cut into 1–2cm (1/2 - 3/4 inch) slices
• 1 tablespoon rapeseed oil
• 150 g (5 1/2 oz) watercress or pea shoots
• 200 g (7 oz) asparagus, shaved
• 150 g (5 1/2 oz) cooked edamame beans
• A bunch of spring onions, cut into strips
• 1 tablespoon black sesame seeds
• 1 tablespoon sesame seeds

Dressing

You probably know Neil deGrasse Tyson as an astrophysicist with a seemingly endless stream of science fun facts at his command. You might not be aware that he is also a great oenophile and lover of food.

Some 16 years ago, before I was a journalist and illustrator, I worked with Neil at the American Museum of Natural History. He would sometimes carry around a small canvas tote bag. As I recall, the bag would contain one of two things: either a weighty, mango-sized meteorite to show to guests of the museum, or a bottle of wine to gift to a colleague.

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