"Whatever [the ingredients] taste like together is not particularly relevant." Terry Gross interviews married culinary historians Jane Ziegelman and Andy Coe on the culinary history of the Great Depression and their new book 'A Square Meal' (37:00 audio, transcribed sections)
The New York State attorney general’s office accused four major retailers on Monday of selling fraudulent and potentially dangerous herbal supplements and demanded that they remove the products from their shelves. The authorities said they had conducted tests on top-selling store brands of herbal supplements at four national retailers — GNC, Target, Walgreens and Walmart — and found that four out of five of the products did not contain any of the herbs on their labels. The tests showed that pills labeled medicinal herbs often contained little more than cheap fillers like powdered rice, asparagus and houseplants, and in some cases substances that could be dangerous to those with allergies. [NYTimes], [WaPo] [more inside]
Garlic Bread of the Revolution: My suggestion? Share this bread with people you really like, so you’ll all smell like garlic.
Isabella Rossellini's daughter Elettra has a witty, attractive food/recipe blog where she shares a customizable pasta dish her grandfather, the iconic director Roberto Rossellini, used to make.
"We're encouraged, foodwise, to pay attention to contrast and balance: a little bit of salt to balance out intense sweetness, a little bit of acid to balance out a lot of rich fat, a bleach-haired goober with sunglasses on the back of his head hustling Donkey Sauce-drowned garbage-food on two different cable channels every nine minutes to balance out any confidence you had that success in life accrues to the deserving, and so on." Deadspin d/b/a Foodspin teaches us that sometimes too much is just enough.
Buffalo chicken wings were invented by Teressa Bellissimo at the Anchor Bar in Buffalo, New York in 1964. Americans will eat 25 billion of them this year - not a few of them at the 10th annual National Buffalo Wing Festival. Some people eat nothing else. Alton Brown steams his. But will any of them be more delicious than these Sriracha Garlic Wings?
Don't toss that celery base! Did you know you can use it to re-grow a new bunch of celery? The same thing works for romaine lettuce and bok choy. You can regrow scallions or leeks or any cooking onion. You can grow garlic. What about lemongrass or ginger? Try planting pepper seeds or key lime seeds; a leftover pineapple top or the classic avocado pit. You can eat the leaves from carrot tops or sweet potato vines or just keep them as houseplants. Seeds Straight From Your Fridge (NYT link)
Ah! The Hopeful Pageantry of Bread and Puppet documents the radical puppet theater's Domestic Resurrection Circus, held every summer on its Glover, Vermont grounds from 1975 to 1998, and which featured puppeteers from around the world. They no longer hold the yearly festival, as the crowds grew out of control, but they are still active [ 2009 documentary | part 2 | 3 ], and as always, serving free bread and art as panacea. There's plenty more Bread and Puppet Theater on Youtube. [more inside]
Conquerors 2009 “There are many underhanded ways of making your conker harder. The best is to pass it through a pig." World Conker Champion – Charlie Bray. The World Conker Championships are on this weekend. All the action from last year. previously   In other news, a cure for bleeding canker has been found, with a welcome side effect, leaf miners don't like having garlic breath.
Sicilian chef Filippo La Mantia has sworn off garlic. La Mantia says that garlic is a "leftover from when Italians were poor", and feels it is overplayed and unnecessary. Others disagree, like chef Antonello Colonna: "eliminating garlic is like "eliminating violins from an orchestra".