Food

Food
12:00 pm
Tue June 23, 2015

In The Japanese Tea Ceremony, Politics Are Served With Every Cup

Myanmar democracy activist Aung San Suu Kyi (right) receives a bowl of green tea from Japanese tea master Genshitsu Sen at a tea ceremony in Kyoto during a 2013 visit to Japan.
STR/AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue June 23, 2015 6:33 pm

In the U.S., Tea Party politics refers to a certain strain of Republican conservatism. But in Japan, tea politics are of an altogether different sort: The ritual drinking of this ancient beverage — often thought of as the epitome of Japanese restraint and formality — has long been entwined with issues of power and national identity.

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Weeknight Kitchen
9:24 am
Thu June 18, 2015

Weeknight Kitchen: Live Habanero Tomato Soup

Makes 1 quart
 
It’s so easy, when you eat primarily raw food, to end up having a lot more sweet things in your diet. Many raw savory dishes take a lot of time and planning to execute. This spicy raw soup, on the other hand, takes mere minutes to whip together, and it packs plenty of essential fatty acids from the hemp seeds and flax oil.
 
· 3 ripe medium tomatoes
· 1 small habanero pepper (If you like it less spicy, remove the stem and seeds.)
· 3 tablespoons hemp seeds
· 2 tablespoons flax oil
· 1 garlic clove

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Food
2:29 pm
Tue June 16, 2015

FDA To Food Companies: This Time, Zero Means Zero Trans Fats

Microwave popcorn containing trans fats from November 2013. The Grocery Manufacturers Association says the industry has lowered the amount of trans fat added to food products by more than 86 percent. But trans fats can still be found in some processed food items.
Shannon Stapleton Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Tue June 16, 2015 8:06 pm

The Food and Drug Administration on Tuesday announced that food companies have three years to remove all trans fats from processed food. The long-expected move is aimed at making food more healthful.

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Food
9:01 am
Tue June 16, 2015

Why Scream For Gelato Instead Of Ice Cream? Here's The Scoop

Higher butterfat content makes ice cream thick and heavy, which is why you can get a nice, round, firm scoop of ice cream, shown at left. Gelato, at right, has less cream, which gives you softer drifts.
iStockphoto/The Art of Making Gelato, Race Point Publishing

Originally published on Tue June 16, 2015 12:21 pm

Back in the day, this saying applied to pretty much everyone: "I scream, you scream, we all scream for ice cream."

Nowadays, though, one friend is probably screaming for gelato, another for a vegan frozen dessert and yet someone else for sherbet.

But it's gelato, ice cream's Italian cousin, that's keeping more customers coming back. Gelato sales rose from $11 million in 2009 to an estimated $214 million in 2014, which has kept frozen dessert sales afloat, according to the market research firm Mintel.

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Food
3:07 pm
Mon June 15, 2015

Mamma Mia! Olive Garden Food Truck Invades Boston's Italian Neighborhood

Boston's North End is full of authentic Italian eateries. The Olive Garden is most definitely not one of them. But this weekend, an Olive Garden food truck parked there, handing out free food samples.
Craig Lemoult/WGBH

Originally published on Tue June 16, 2015 2:33 pm

Boston's North End neighborhood is a popular destination for authentic Italian food. But this weekend, local eateries got some unlikely competition: the Olive Garden food truck.

The green truck, emblazoned with the words "Breadstick Nation" and "Italian Kitchen," found a parking spot on the edge of the Boston neighborhood where Italian food is most sacred.

That's right: Olive Garden is jumping on the food truck craze. The Italian restaurant chain is sending trucks around the country to hand out free samples of its newest menu item: breadstick sandwiches.

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Food
5:43 am
Sun June 14, 2015

Nocturnal Nosh: Americans Get A Taste Of Night Markets

Potato swirls at 626 Night Market in Santa Anita Park in Arcadia, Calif.
Brian Fung Courtesy of 626 Night Market

Originally published on Tue June 16, 2015 1:24 pm

Many American towns put the "Closed" sign up by 6 p.m. But night markets are drawing people out in Minnesota, Oklahoma and Virginia, with food, art and music from the local community.

The model for the nocturnal markets is the Asian night market, where people eat, shop and socialize and tourists discover delicacies like live scorpions and roasted sea horse until the wee hours of the morning.

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Weeknight Kitchen
7:27 am
Mon June 8, 2015

Weekend Kitchen: Sour Cream Rhubarb Pie

Makes 1 pie, about 8 to 10 slices
 
This recipe came to me from my dear friend Margie. We became fast friends the day our family moved onto the block. You couldn't ask for a better neighbor, and when I found out she was a keen baker I knew she was one for keeps! I think this may be my all-time favorite pie. The combination of sour cream, rhubarb and crumb topping is so good, it should be illegal.
 
· 1 Butter's All Butter Pastry single crust pie (recipe follows)
· 1 1/4 cups sugar
· 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
· 1/2 teaspoon salt

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Weeknight Kitchen
1:47 pm
Wed June 3, 2015

Weeknight Kitchen: Grilled Caesar Salad with Sun-dried Tomatoes and Fried Capers

Serves 4
 
Grilling a salad might sound counterintuitive, but it adds a whole new flavor experience. Developing a nice char on the outside of the romaine not only enhances the presentation, but it also adds a nice depth of smoky flavor. Instead of using croutons, I pan-fry capers, which add a salty, nutty crunch. Without letting anything go to waste, I also fry the capers in the reserved oil from the jarred sun-dried tomatoes, which lends a honeyed flavor to the capers. Of course, the sun-dried tomatoes bring a pop of color and sweetness to help round out the dish.
 

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Weeknight Kitchen
6:05 pm
Fri May 29, 2015

Weeknight Kitchen: Fish Kabobs

Serves 2 to 3
 
Soaking the skewers in water prevents them from catching fire during grilling. If you have metal skewers, use those instead.
 
· 6 (6-inch) wooden skewers
· 1 (8-oz.) tuna fillet
· 1 (8-oz.) grouper fillet
· 1 (8-oz.) salmon fillet, skinned
· 1 (8-oz.) bottle olive oil-and-vinegar dressing
· 1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
· 1 Tbsp. fresh rosemary, chopped
· 1 Tbsp. pink peppercorns
· 2 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
· Fresh herb sprigs (optional)
 

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Food
7:03 am
Tue May 26, 2015

Game For Ancient Grain: Palestinians Find Freekeh Again

In a village outside of Jenin, in the West Bank, Palestinian farmers harvest wheat early and burn the husks to yield the smoky, nutty grain known as freekeh.
Daniella Cheslow for NPR

In early May, Nasser Abufarha drove through the rural farmlands around Jenin in the northern West Bank and noticed the timeless features of village life. Young boys harvested cauliflower bigger than their heads, a sun-beaten old man passed on foot with a hoe propped against his shoulder and middle-aged women strolled to their modest homes on a path between waving wheat fields.

But there was one new element, says Abufarha, a Palestinian-American businessman and the founder of the largest fair trade exporter for Palestinian produce.

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Weeknight Kitchen
9:43 am
Fri May 22, 2015

Weeknight Kitchen: Chickpea Masala & Saffron Rice

Serves 4
 
· 1 Tbsp ground cumin
· 1/4 tsp saffron threads
· 1 cup (7 oz/220 g) basmati rice
· 1 3/4 cups (14 fl oz/430 ml) chicken or vegetable stock or water
· Kosher salt
· 1 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
· 1 small red onion, finely diced
· 1 garlic clove, minced
· 1 Tbsp peeled and minced fresh ginger
· 2 Tbsp curry powder
· 1/4 cup (2 fl oz/60 ml) heavy cream
· 1 can (151/2 oz/485 g) chickpeas, rinsed and drained
· 3 oz (90 g) spinach
· Juice of 1 lemon

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Food
3:50 am
Fri May 22, 2015

Adios, Trans Fats: FDA Poised To Phase Out Artery-Clogging Fat

Various food items that contained trans fats in November 2013. That month, the Food and Drug Administration first announced plans to ban partially hydrogenated vegetable oils from all food products. A final rule is expected any day now.
Scott Olson Getty Images

Originally published on Fri May 22, 2015 7:32 am

The case against trans fats is not new. For years, health experts have been telling us to avoid them.

And as retailing behemoths such as Wal-Mart have committed to the removal of all remaining, industrially produced trans fats in the products they sell, the food industry has stepped up its pace to reformulate its offerings.

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Food
6:39 pm
Tue May 19, 2015

Tea Tuesdays: Cold Weather, Gogol And The Rise Of The Russian Samovar

A late 19th-century samovar made in Tula, Russia, a metalworking town south of Moscow. The very first samovar factory opened in Tula in 1778. As demand for samovars grew, the town became almost synonymous with the production of the giant hot-water urns.
Sheldon Luskin Collection The Museum of Russian Art, Minneapolis

Originally published on Tue May 26, 2015 6:17 pm

There are two drinks most people associate with Russia — vodka and tea, prepared in a giant hot-water urn known as a samovar.

Yet while vodka may have actually originated in Russia (Poland is another contender), tea is a thoroughly foreign product.

Most historians believe the Chinese first brought tea to Russia sometime in the 1600s. As for the samovar? "The origins are shrouded in mystery," says Maria Zavilova, curator at the Museum of Russian Art in Minnesota.

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Food
1:03 pm
Tue May 19, 2015

Saving The Sweetest Watermelon The South Has Ever Known

Nat Bradford holds a Bradford watermelon, known for its sweet, fragrant red flesh. The melon was created by Bradford's forefathers around 1840 and was once one of the most important and coveted melons of the South.
Heather Grilliot Courtesy of Bradford Watermelons

Originally published on Tue May 19, 2015 3:44 pm

The most luscious watermelon the Deep South has ever produced was once so coveted, 19th-century growers used poison or electrocuting wires to thwart potential thieves, or simply stood guard with guns in the thick of night. The legendary Bradford was delectable — but the melon didn't ship well, and it all but disappeared by the 1920s. Now, eight generations later, a great-great-great-grandson of its creator is bringing it back.

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Food
1:59 pm
Fri May 15, 2015

Bistro In Vitro: A Virtual Playground To Ponder The Future Of Meat

The bistro imagines the day when will be possible to culture "meat thread" made from long strands of muscle tissue. On a "special knitting machine," meat is thread into a steak.
Submarine Channel/Next Nature Network/Bistro In Vitro

Flowering meat that unfolds when plopped into hot broth, beef "yarn" that can be knitted directly onto your plate and fried nuggets made from the extinct dodo bird are just a few of the menu options at the Bistro In Vitro.

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Weeknight Kitchen
9:48 am
Wed May 13, 2015

Weeknight Kitchen: Radish Sandwiches with Butter and Salt

Makes 6 to 8 small sandwiches or 20 to 24 hors d'oeuvres
 

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Food
2:27 pm
Wed May 6, 2015

Puerto Rico Is Sowing A New Generation Of Small Farmers

Dalma Cartagena teaches a class on agricultural science to elementary-school students in Orocovis, Puerto Rico. "I'm preparing them to make good decisions when it comes to the environment and healthy foods," she says.
Greg Allen NPR

Originally published on Wed May 6, 2015 7:55 pm

Although it's a tropical island, perhaps surprisingly, Puerto Rico produces very little of its own food. After decades of industrialization, the U.S. territory imports more than 80 percent of what's consumed on the island. There are signs, though, the trend is changing.

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Weeknight Kitchen
9:53 am
Wed May 6, 2015

Weeknight Kitchen: Oven-Baked Tarragon-Scented Salmon

Serves 6 to 8
 
Fennel seeds and fresh tarragon quietly infuse a yogurt marinade in this delicate fish supper. After it has spent a few hours in the fridge, slide the salmon into the oven and stir together the golden bread-crumb topping. You’ll be rewarded with a meal completely out of proportion to the amount of effort expended.
 
· 1 tablespoon fennel seeds
· 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
· 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
· 1/2 cup plain yogurt (not Greek), preferably whole-milk
· 1 1/2 teaspoons Dijon mustard

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Food
1:20 pm
Tue May 5, 2015

'Tales' Of Pig Intelligence, Factory Farming And Humane Bacon

Author Barry Estabrook says pigs can be taught to play computer games and recognize themselves in a mirror.
W. W. Norton & Company

Originally published on Tue May 5, 2015 5:59 pm

Journalist Barry Estabrook knows how to enjoy a juicy heritage pork chop. He'll also be the first to tell you what intelligent, sensitive creatures pigs are. "I had no idea how smart they were until I got in the research," Estabrook tells Fresh Air's Dave Davies.

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Food
3:34 pm
Mon May 4, 2015

Sandwich Monday: We're Full

Because of the limited structural integrity of The Saltwich, Robert had to employ the Butterfly Grip in 2013.
NPR

Originally published on Wed May 6, 2015 3:18 pm

In 2010, we started eating sandwiches. Five years later, we are officially full. From now on, Sandwich Monday is going to be an occasional feature here on The Salt, rather than a regular one.

There are many reasons, but mostly it's because Miles knows a guy who knows a guy who says he can replace all of our blood with gorilla plasma and this will undo everything we've done to our bodies since the series began, but he only works on Mondays.

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