Archive for the ‘food’ Category

Breakfast Cereal: Shot From Guns

May 10, 2018

Dave Arnold and the staff of the Museum of Food and Drink demonstrate the breakfast cereal puffing gun, which débuted at the St. Louis World’s Fair in 1904.

Produced by Sky Dylan-Robbins and Matt Buchanan for The New Yorker.

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The Macaroons of Moses

March 30, 2018

The Macaroons of Moses

Tonight many Jewish families hold the Seder, the ritual meal celebrating the holiday of Passover. Many Americans are unfamiliar with the customs of this dinner, such as recounting the Exodus story as told in the ancient Maxwell House Haggadah and the obligation to drink four glasses of wine (oh, the sacrifices …).

One seasonal custom puzzling to Gentiles is the appearance of canned Kosher cookies in American supermarkets. Many Jews are puzzled as well, since the cookies are macaroons made with coconut, chocolate, and other ingredients not prominent in the Old Testament.

Origins of the Passover macaroon are shrouded in mystery. Some believe the dense sweets derive from hastily assembled desserts prepared by the Israelites as they fled Egyptian bondage on a route devoid of donut shops. Others maintain that, in the nineteenth century, rabbinical scholars exploring caves near the Dead Sea uncovered a huge cache of ancient canisters of sweet, rock-hard, unleavened biscuits. Each spring these pious prospectors slapped “Kosher for Passover” labels on the cans and exported them to the growing Jewish community in the United States, and a tradition was born.

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Nutella Riots Rock France

January 26, 2018

Nutella Riots Rock France

While French President Emmanuel Macron talked trade in Davos, back home the République was rocked by retail riots. The Intermarché supermarket chain slashed the price of Nutella by 70%, causing chaos across the country. Customers fought, employees were punched, les flics were called.

The French really love that chocolate hazelnut spread on their baguettes in the morning. They consume 26 percent of world Nutella production.

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Thin-Crust Cultural Heritage

December 8, 2017

Thin-Crust Cultural Heritage
Even though one in three of Italy’s pizza makers isn’t Italian, the UNESCO  Intergovernmental Committee for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage has named Neapolitan pizza an Intangible Cultural Heritage.

“The art of the Neapolitan ‘Pizzaiuolo’ is a culinary practice comprising four different phases relating to the preparation of the dough and its baking in a wood-fired oven, involving a rotatory movement by the baker. The element originates in Naples, the capital of the Campania Region, where about 3,000 Pizzaiuoli now live and perform.” — UNESCO
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NutellaGate

November 28, 2017

NutellaGate

“McDonald’s restaurants in Italy serve it on hamburger buns. Lifestyle websites cheekily offer lists of “signs you’re addicted to Nutella.” And at least one German soccer team dropped a player who couldn’t stop eating it.

Yes, a legion of snackers live for the hazelnut spread. And they’re not happy.

Nutella confirmed on its Twitter feed Wednesday that the recipe “underwent a fine-tuning” after Germany’s Hamburg Consumer Protection Center said on Facebook that  it appeared the recipe had changed.”

“‘Real cool,’ wrote one user, adding, ‘why not draw a mustache on the Mona Lisa too?’”

— “‘How dare they’: Nutella changes recipe, sending its fans to the edge,” Travis M. Andrews, Washington Post

More:

“Choc horror: fans outraged by Nutella’s secret recipe change,” Rebecca Smithers, The Guardian

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Image (“Still Life with Pewter Jug and Nutella, after Cezanne”) by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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GMO Foods

September 25, 2017

GMO foods explained, by Kurzgesagt (German for “in a nutshell”).

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Sugar: Threat or Menace?

June 9, 2017

Is a sugar a drug? A PBS Digital video by Joe Hanson.

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Hey Kids, Crappy School Lunches Are Back!

May 2, 2017

Hey Kids, Crappy School Lunches Are Back!
On Monday, new Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue got right behind the plow to solve America’s most pressing food problem, the deadly plague of healthy school lunches. The Trump administration has decided that kids should eat the traditional salty slop of their obese, constipated seniors. Chocolate milk is back! Veggies? Gone. Whole grains? Gone. Take that, Michelle Obama!

Official USDA press release: “Ag Secretary Perdue Moves to Make School Meals Great Again.”

More:

“The Trump administration’s tone deaf move on school lunches,” Julia Belluz, Vox

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Image (“Caution: School Lunch”) by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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Mar-a-Lago Kitchens Cited for 13 Health Code Violations

April 14, 2017

13 Health Code Violations in Mar-a-Lago Kitchens

In Florida this month, members of President Trump’s pricy Mar-a-Lago club got some extras in the dining room‘s kitchen: Fish parasites, unrefrigerated raw meats, and more. Mar-a-Lago was cited for a total of 13 health code violations.

But Palm Beach is no Las Vegas. The Trump steakhouse there, DJT,  was cited for 51 health code violations in 2012.

More:

“Undercooled meat. Dangerous fish. Health inspectors ding Trump’s Mar-a-Lago kitchen,” José Lambiet, Miami Herald

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Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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A Restaurant Kitchen of Grandmas

February 10, 2017

Enoteca Maria, a restaurant and wine bar in Staten Island, features two special dishes each day. One is by an Italian nonna, the other by a grandmother from another part of the world. Video by Jessica Leibowitz.

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