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The Dish
August 26  |  By Russ Parsons Los Angeles Times
Rice bowls: An idea that still bowls her over
When Jessica Koslow put together her first rice bowl a couple of years ago, she wasn’t looking to start a trend. She just wanted to be able to offer something a little different to her customers at her East Hollywood restaurant, Sqirl.Now, of course, rice bowls, their near-cousins grain bowls and even the distantly related porridge bowls are just about the most happening menu items in Southern California.

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August 12  |  By Bill Daley Chicago Tribune
Congee gets flavorful kick-start into lunch, dinner menus
Congee — it’s not just for breakfast anymore. Chefs are spooning up the comforting rice porridge all kinds of ways at brunch, lunch and dinner too.Take Minh Phan of Porridge and Puffs in Los Angeles.“Although porridge is one of the oldest of any and every culture, I think it is only (now) coming into its own modern iteration,” Phan writes in an email. “As for the LA scene, I hope porridge becomes the new ramen” — meaning the reimagined dish of the moment.What is congee?

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August 12  |  By Susan Selasky Detroit Free Press
There are many, many versions of pulled pork from sweet to spicy to those doused in sauce and those on the dry side. And then there’s the option of topping them with slaw, which is my preference.This spicy slaw is one of my favorites to go with pulled pork barbecue.Spicy slaw 1 small to medium head of green cabbage 2 carrots, peeled, shredded 1 red onion, peeled, thinly sliced 2 green onions, washed, ends removed, chopped

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July 29  |  By T. Susan Chang Special to The Washington Post
Solidly seasonal cookbook, but hardly compost-free
“Root to Leaf: A Southern Chef Cooks Through the Seasons,” By Steven SatterfieldHarper Wave, 2015; $45Steven Satterfield is the chef at the helm of “produce-driven” Miller Union, in Atlanta. What does it exactly mean for a restaurant to be “produce-driven”? According to Satterfield, it means working closely with local sources. It means cooking with scrupulous seasonality. And it means cooking “root to leaf” — the vegetable-and-fruit equivalent of “nose to tail.”

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July 22  |  By Sarah Gish The Kansas City Star
Chill out: Icebox pies and cakes end summer meals on a cool note
When Bobbie Crew was growing up, her favorite treat was her mom’s lemon icebox pie.The pie was far from fancy: It consisted of a vanilla wafer crust cupping a cool pool of custard-like filling made with sweetened condensed milk and lemon juice. It didn’t bake in the oven - it set in the refrigerator.Crew, who lives in Lee’s Summit, Mo., and blogs about vegan food at, now makes a dairy-free version of her mom’s lemon icebox pie with soy milk.

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July 15  |  By James P. DeWan Chicago Tribune
A fabulous frittata in just five steps
Given our American infatuation with eggs, it’s peculiar that you don’t hear more about the frittata, an Italian concoction that’s like a cross between an omelet and a crustless quiche.I think people are afraid that it’s too easy to end up with a great, big, eggy mess. Well, grab your whisk and ignore your fears. It’s frittata time.Why you need to learn this

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July 8  |  By Judy Hevrdejs Chicago Tribune
Do you need a spiralizer? We test the gadget of the moment
I’ve seen, used and discarded many kitchen gadgets in my life. In my small kitchen, a fine set of knives is all I need. Still, I was fascinated enough by the love fest surrounding the spiralizer, a tool that cuts spirals and spaghetti-like strips from vegetables and firm fruit (apples, pears), that I tried an inexpensive number last year — and swore (mentally) as I cleaned its “teeth” with toothpicks.

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July 1  |  By Ellie Krieger The Washington Post
A healthful but tasty burger is in the cards
This plump, juicy burger is my desire-driven answer to the nutritional call to limit the portion size of a piece of lean meat to a deck of cards.While that is sound advice, unfortunately the card imagery too often applies to how that kind of burger tastes. The dietitian side of me knows that choosing lean meat is the most healthful way to go, and that a deck-size portion is ample. But the passionate food lover in me wants something bigger, more fun and more flavorful.

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July 1  |  By Bonnie S. Benwick The Washington Post
Creating potato salads that are always-welcome-at-a-party side dish In summer's unofficial produce pageant, Silver Queen corn reigns perennial, while peaches and late-August tomatoes vie for runner-up honors. Pound for pound, though, a non-seasonal starter gets the double win for talent and congeniality: the potato.

Not just any spud will do. Go for the small, less-starchy models that now come in many colors, with skin so tender that no one would think of stripping them bare. They're the ones that make potato salads the...

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June 24  |  By Linda Gassenheimer Miami Herald
Learn how to buy, store and use good-quality olive oil
We’ve all heard that olive oil is good for us, but does that account for its surge in popularity? Supermarkets have entire shelves dedicated to different types of olive oils. In fact, olive oil production and sales is one of the fastest-growing global industries.Why the oil boom? I set out to learn more about it and how to buy, store and use good-quality olive oil.

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June 17  |  By Gretchen McKay Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Baked eggs a nice alternative to the egg routine Eggs are a cheap and easy source of protein, but you can get tired of the same old way of preparing them, i.e. scrambling and frying. These easy baked eggs (also called shirred eggs) are an elegant alternative.

Prepared in individual ramekins on a bed of baby spinach — abundant this time of year in farmers markets — this recipe is about as divine as they come. Instead of the usual salt and pepper, the eggs gets their zing from an onion-y yogurt sauce and a...

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June 16  |  
A tender homage to savory beignets
If the crisped brown puffs at the very French Bastille restaurant look suspiciously like Southern hush puppies, the answer lies in the Old Town Alexandria, Virginia, restaurant’s previous incarnation. It was a cafe owned by a New Orleans native who served his hometown specialties. Incoming chef-owners Christophe and Michelle Poteaux paid homage by keeping some of that essence on their menu, refining one recipe in particular while they were working at the Watergate before opening Bastille in...

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June 10  |  By Lisa Yockelson Special to The Washington Post
Muffins make Sunday a little sweeter On any given Sunday morning, while listening to the pundits review and spin the news of the week, I'm doing my own whirl-in - with a whisk and a basic piece of bakeware in the kitchen. It's a homey, engaging way to spend the morning and to help digest some of the events a little more sweetly.

Dolled up for the weekend, my muffins turn out glamorously rugged, laced as they are with banana, cranberries, pumpkin seeds, bran and two types of flour; two enrichments, buttermilk...

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June 8  |  By JeanMarie Brownson Chicago Tribune
How to outfit a kitchen for a newbie cook Despite the fact that I've spent a lifetime collecting kitchen gadgets from around the world, I have to say it really doesn't take too much equipment to start your cooking life. Especially if you take advantage of the timesaving options such as precut vegetables and individual portions of meat and seafood sold in today's supermarkets. A decent dinner can be on the table with one good knife, a nonstick skillet and a saucepan. Cook pasta in the saucepan while you saute meat and...

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June 3  |  
New ‘Books of Pies’ is filled with blue-ribbon dessert recipes
I’m a road-tripper.I love meandering, traveling byways instead of highways and always braking for food finds.I love diners — the more shine and neon, the better — and country cafés and roadside smokers.

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June 2  |  By Susan Selasky Detroit Free Press
Test Kitchen recipe: A tasty twist on classic BLT
When it comes to making BLTs, I like to think of it as building layers of flavor that meld together well. And while some would disagree, it’s not all about the bacon.A BLT, in my mind, is about the sum of its parts. It’s also about vine-ripened tomatoes, sprinkled with a little salt and pepper.The type of lettuce you use is important, too. Maybe you are seeking the crunch of iceberg or the softness of butter lettuce or the bite of bitter greens.

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May 27  |  By Tom Sietsema The Washington Post
America's best food cities: San Francisco, where plenty is part of the scene From touchdown, no other city in the country whets my appetite like San Francisco, where arrivals at Terminal 2 at SFO are welcomed with a feast. Calling to me as I disembark are Burger Joint, where the Niman Ranch patties are slipped inside toasted buns, and Lark Creek Grill, the source of breakfast omelets made with cage-free eggs. Coffee comes by way of a pedigreed local: Peet's, originally from Berkeley.

Most impressive of all is the 5,000-square-foot Napa Farms...

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May 13  |  
A shot of gazpacho will cure what ails you The playground bully hates his victim's guts. The fisherman guts his prey. The soldier guts it out. Strong stuff. It takes guts to deploy the word guts.

Now guts is going glam. Against all odds, it's in.

Whole books are devoted to cultivating a happy, healthy gut, one flush with microbes eager to churn mere food into energy, health and vitality. Not just books, but cookbooks.

I tried. I spent a week blending brews that promised a gut teeming with...

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May 6  |  By Becky Krystal The Washington Post
Slow rise for a quick pie
Ruth Gresser moves at a deliberate pace.“Obviously, I do things slowly,” said the owner of Pizzeria Paradiso. “It’s been 23 years, and I only have three restaurants.”“Only” three might sound strange, except in this day and age, restaurateurs are prone to much quicker empire-building. But Gresser is about to pick up the pace: Her newest venture - seven years in the making - centers on the premise of speed.

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April 29  |  By Dorie Greenspan Special To The Washington Post
The less fuss, the better the shortbread I'm a slowpoke in the kitchen. Always was, and I guess I always will be; I haven't gotten a second faster since I started cooking decades ago. Don't look for me on any of the competitive cooking shows: Just thinking about that ticking clock gives me hives. But even I, who considers baking a form of meditation, can get this shortbread in the oven in about 15 minutes. Not that I've ever timed myself ...

Shortbread comes in so many varieties: Some have eggs, some don't; some...

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April 15  |  By Roberto A. Ferdman The Washington Post
WASHINGTON — For decades, Americans have sipped on fountain sodas, wondering, at least occasionally but likely much more often, what exactly that thing that makes the drink so sweet is. It’s called high-fructose corn syrup (HFCS), that much we have known. And it could be bad for us in a way that sugar is not. But what exactly is it, where does it come from, and how much does it truly differ from the ingredient it so often replaces in processed foods?

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April 8  |  By Leah Eskin Chicago Tribune
Foregoing cake recipe with lard in favor of cornbread
Lard is practically a swear. No surprise, given that both pig and fat are redeployed as insults. Lard used to work the bakery with dignity, yielding flaky pastry and crisp crusts. So when a friend confessed that her favorite cake is larded with lard, I resolved to make one.Necessitating lard. Once lard lounged next to the Crisco (vegetable fat), or butter (milk fat), or margarine (high-tech fat). Now it’s scarce.

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April 7  |  By Dorie Greenspan Special to the Washington Post
Surprise ingredient makes these biscuits great Here's one of the million things I love about baking: You learn something new every time. Recently, I learned that I could make biscuits using cottage cheese instead of milk.

I was going to file that under "necessity is the mother of invention," but it's more likely that this new biscuit came about because of sloth: I couldn't face heading out in the snow for buttermilk, and I didn't have my usual b-milk hack: yogurt (I use about two-thirds yogurt to one-third...

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April 1  |  By Peter Whoriskey The Washington Post
Buying organic fruits and vegetables costs more, and for many shoppers, the advantage hardly seems worth the expense. But there are certain produce items for which “buying organic is a must,” according to a new release from Consumer Reports, the non-profit long-known for its product reviews.

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April 1  |  By Jan Roberts-Dominguez Special to The Herald
Get cracking: Easter tradition full of memories
Growing up in the Roberts family, an egg cracking contest was always the highlight of our Easter dinner festivities. Once everyone had selected a colored egg from the basket, arms and an occasional egg shell would fly as egg-wielding opponents squared off.

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April 1  |  
Biscotti cookbook a mix of classic, creative
That loud crunch you hear is the sound of biscotti being consumed across America. Yet the Italian cookie savored these days may not look at all like the twice-baked number that’s been around since Roman times. Why, it may not even look like the ones pastry chef Antonio Mattei created when he got his hands on an old recipe, mixed up flour, sugar, eggs and nuts then began selling his version in 1858 in the Tuscan town of Prato, and winning a couple of culinary awards with them as well.

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March 25  |  By Roberto A. Ferdman The Washington Post
The most popular breakfast cereals in America today
WASHINGTON — It’s a tough time to be in the cereal business. General Mills, the biggest seller of cereal in the United States, announced another disappointing quarter Wednesday morning, marking the sixth straight time the company has reported lower sales.

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March 18  |  
Meyer lemon souffle a welcome ray of sunshine
March, aptly named, is a slow, obligatory trudge. The scenery is best indoors: cup, counter, cookbook. A moment startled, one morning, by the buzzer; the man in the brown uniform handed off a brown box. Small, heavy and postmarked California.I slit the tape, folded back the flaps and squinted into a blaze of sunshine: seven Meyer lemons, straight from Ann’s tree.

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March 17  |  
Use puffed wild rice for nutritious snack bars
When a cook from Minnesota’s Red Lake Nation showed chef Jerome Grant how to puff wild rice, amping up its nutty flavor, he knew just where to deploy it: in a grain-packed alternative to the granola bar.

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March 12  |  By Judy Hevrdejs Chicago Tribune
Rich taste of Ireland served up in a trio of cookbooks
You need not have cousins in Cork or Mayo to stir up a few Irish dishes. Not with this trio of cookbooks with their enticing recipes and beautiful photos.

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