March 6, 2015 |
IN THE '80s, quiche, crab cakes, carrot cake and blackened anything were chichi. So were Salad Alley, Chinese chicken salad, chicken Marsala and chicken Marbella. Southwest was in vogue. Nachos were novel. Now, somewhat suddenly, if not surprisingly, like Naomi Campbell and those creepy ghosties in "Poltergeist II," '80s food favorites, well, they're back. Philly's most obvious example of the resurrection of "Dancin' on Air"-era fare comes from "Top Chef" Kevin Sbraga. Juniper Commons, Sbraga's third restaurant, debuted mid-December.
March 1, 2015 |
I'm reaching into the drawer that holds information rather than questions this week, and the first item I retrieve concerns refrigerator food spoilage when the power goes out for a long period. From appliance protection plan company Protect Your Bubble comes word that the average value of food that spoils if a refrigerator stops working is $173.37. In 2014, January was the month with the highest number of food spoilage claims, followed by May, July, June, and April. Items people are concerned about the most when power goes out are meats, milk, and vegetables.
February 27, 2015
SPINACH PIE 16-ounce package chopped, frozen spinach, thawed and well-drained Two 15-ounce containers ricotta cheese 5 whole eggs, beaten 4 ounces roasted organic tomatoes, drained and chopped 2 tablespoons Sizzle & Swing Tangerine & Dill Seasoning (or 1 1/2 teaspoons dill, 1/2 teaspoon orange peel) 1 tablespoon chopped chives 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg 8 ounces small heirloom tomatoes, halved 6 ounces feta cheese, crumbled roughly Freshly ground black pepper 1 teaspoon salt Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
February 10, 2015 |
Following a national trend to pair pretty public places with healthier, tastier food choices - beyond the usual fare of hamburgers, hotdogs, and ice cream - New Jersey officials are seeking vendors to bring "high quality" food service to Island Beach State Park this summer. "We're basically just looking to enhance the Island Beach experience for our park-goers," said Bob Considine, a spokesman for the state Department of Environmental Protection. "You have people who go there because it's a destination and you have people who go every weekend to be on the beach.
February 9, 2015 |
Before new-wave food trucks were hawking mac-and-cheese 10 different ways, burgers with pork belly, and cupcakes with Earl Grey buttercream, there was Magic Carpet Foods, one of Philly's original food trucks. Serving vegetarian eats with global influences and memorable monikers, Magic Carpet Foods quickly attracted a following when it opened on the University of Pennsylvania campus in 1984. Several trucks and Magic Meatballs later, Deborah Carson and her husband, Dean Varvoutis, have seen undergrads go on to finish doctorates, marry, and have children who enroll and come back.
February 8, 2015 |
On my recent study abroad trip to Syracuse, Sicily, there were many incredible sights to see: the sparkling blue ocean that extended to the horizon, the picturesque Italian streets, and then there was me dancing shirtless with a belly dancer while my classmates cheered me on. It was our last night in Italy. We had bonded quite a bit throughout the week, and now we were forced to say goodbye to our tours of temples of Athena, puppet theaters, and the mime who cursed us out for being tourists.
February 6, 2015
HAVE YOU heard? Science shows that, contrary to popular thinking, fish is not a vegetable. Many so-called vegetarians harbor that fluid dietary ethic. I include my own 15 years as a so-called vegetarian, when I celebrated the occasional birthday or holiday with shrimp or New England clam chowder because, come on, "It's just seafood!" But serious science has established a couple of other facts. One is that ocean drift nets grab a huge amount of "bycatch" - nontargeted animals that die just the same.
February 4, 2015
THOUSANDS of companies and millions of Americans routinely throw away food that someone who frequently goes hungry would be thankful to eat. Shortly after my father died of cancer, my homemaker mother had no choice but to transition back into the workforce to support my sister and me. The first job she obtained was as an entry-level food-broker. One day, she brought home a bag of unfamiliar food items. She said she had gotten them for free. I asked her what was wrong with the food. She replied, "Nothing is wrong with it, technically, but any can, for instance, that has a ding in it or has some other noticeable surface damage cannot be sold in the store, and most of the time the items end up getting thrown away.
January 30, 2015
IT'S NICE to be recognized. And it's even nicer to recognize what you've already got. If this first month of 2015 is any indication, this will shape up to be the year of the flattering mention, with national publications blaring their editorial trumpets in favor of fair Philadelphia. The New York Times stuck us at No. 3 on its list of "52 Places to Go in 2015. " We beat out a bunch of stateside and worldwide destinations, edged only by Milan, Italy, and Cuba - not that it's a competition.
January 25, 2015 |
When preparing food at home, do you: Clean sponges with soap to kill bacteria after wiping up drippings on countertops? Cover Tupperware containers when cooling hot food in the fridge? Rinse chicken in the sink? All not good. "Washing a sponge with soap doesn't get rid of bacteria," said microbiologist Michael Doyle, director of the University of Georgia's Center for Food Safety. They grow at room temperature and get spread around anything else you wipe off. "Put the sponge in a microwave for one minute to kill the salmonella and other bacteria," he said.