The Non Partisan Pistachio
In this presidential election year, keep in mind that the person you vote for may be responsible for creating a new national food holiday. True, other levels of government such as state legislatures, governors, and mayors can proclaim special observance days, but you know you’ve hit the big time when the president makes it so.
Sometimes, however, bipartisan agreement can’t decide which day will be the “official” gustatory celebration. Perhaps that is what happened with National Pistachio Day. Is it January 26 or February 26? Many sources name both days. Perhaps they just broke it down along party lines and the “red” dyed pistachios are honored one day and the “au naturel” beige pistachio honored the other.
In my mind, everyday is Pistachio Day, especially Farmers Market days when I can run down and pick up a couple bags from the Santa Barbara Pistachio Company. The Zannon family developed a unique process for roasting and flavoring their incredibly high-quality nuts. But you don’t have to have flavored pistachios to enjoy their exotic little bits of nutty goodness; you can include them in your healthy cooking lifestyle, too.
Pistachio, Cranberry & Rice Pilaf
¼ c. finely chopped Vidalia onion
¼ tsp. turmeric
⅛ tsp. ground cardamom
1½ Tbs. unsalted butter
⅓ c. basmati rice
⅔ c. chicken broth
2 Tbs. pistachio nuts, lightly toasted, cooled, and chopped
2 Tbs. dried cranberries
2 Tbs. thinly sliced scallions
In a small heavy saucepan over moderately low heat, cook onion with turmeric and cardamom in one tablespoon of the butter, stirring until the onion is softened. Add rice and cook, stirring until it is coated with the butter. Add the broth, bring the liquid to a boil, and cover and simmer the mixture for 17 minutes or until the liquid is absorbed and the rice is tender. Stir in the pistachios, cranberries, and scallions and the remaining half tablespoon of butter, and salt and pepper to taste.
The Coca-Cola Co. is looking to bolster its tea business and is considering acquisitions to improve its position, reports Reuters.Honest Tea's Seth and Barry have a blog. Go visit. Tell them NO on the Coca Cola dealings. Remind them of what Coca Cola is doing to the water in India!
"Tea is a priority area," Chief Executive Neville Isdell told Reuters on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum. "Tea is one area where we've seen our performance has not been as good as we would like it to be."
He declined to confirm or deny recent reports that Coca-Cola might buy or make an investment in Honest Beverages, the privately held maker of Honest Tea. "The honest answer is we look at everything, and when we decide that we are going to do something, we will let you know," Isdell said. - Gourmet Retailer
Tens of thousands of people all across India are challenging Coca-Cola for its abuse of water resources. Coca-Cola bottling plants have dramatically affected both the quantity and quality of groundwater resources as a result of its operations, making access to water by communities even more difficult.
The company regularly extracts up to one million liters of water per day in some areas in India. The result has been sharp drops in groundwater levels, resulting in severe water shortages for tens of thousands of people.
Coca-Cola's water use ratio in India is 4 to 1 - that is, 75% of the freshwater it extracts is turned into wastewater. The company has indiscriminately discharged its wastewater into the surrounding fields, severely polluting the scarce remaining groundwater as well as soil. - Common Dreams
Our mission is to transform the way communities shop for, cook, eat, and relate to the food that is grown and produced in their area. We value local, seasonal, authentic foods and culinary traditions. We strive to put a face on every farmer as we tell their stories and champion their efforts toward a more sustainable and safe food system.My three (for now at least....) Edible Hawaiian Islands, Edible San Francisco and Edible Ojai. All delicious to look at...to browse through...to learn from.
Through our printed publications, websites, and events, we connect consumers with local growers, retailers, chefs, and food artisans, enabling those relationships to grow and thrive in a mutually beneficial, healthful, and economically viable way.
It's hard to be a Bag Monster in the Age of Bag Bans. My story starts in San Francisco, the "City of Tolerance," where my family was banned. For 30 years we've been free to ride the wind and water currents world-wide and live in safety under kitchen sinks and in drawers. San Francisco’s Anti-Bag Monster agenda is spreading around the world. If your community is Bag Monster friendly, please notify me... Maybe I could stay under your kitchen sink for a while? Just ‘till I get back on my feet.Although, I believe in the "Anti-Bag Monster propoganda"....
Heat oven to 350 degrees.
Cream together butter and sugars until light and fluffy. Mix in eggs, one at a time. Add peanut butter and mix until incorporated.
In a separate bowl, sift together flour, salt and baking powder. Add the dry ingredients 1 cup at a time to the butter mixture, scraping the bowl as needed. Stir in peanut brittle and bacon.
Roll dough into ½-inch balls and place on parchment-lined cookie sheets. Flatten each cookie with the palm of your hand to about 1 inch in diameter. Bake about 15 minutes, or until the edges begin to lightly brown. Remove to a cooling rack to cool completely. Store in an airtight container up to one week.
Makes about five to six dozen cookies.
But...I shouldn't be so quick to judge as I tasted amazing chocolate down in Sandy Eggo at the Fancy Food Trade Show. It was from Vosges (a Chicago Chocolatier) and was quite unusually delicious.... "Mo's Bacon Bar",
The treat, recently introduced, features crumbles of applewood smoked bacon and flecks of Alder wood smoked salt coated in 41-percent cacao milk chocolate. Think of a what a Nestle Crunch bar might be like if you substituted smoky crispy bacon bits for the puffed rice and gave it a nice little salty kick. - The Stew (A Chicago Tribune blog)Unusual combinations of bacon with some some other unexpected ingredient....guess it's a "mid-west" thing...but oh, so good!
Whole Foods is eliminating single-use plastic bags because they're petroleum-based and can take more than 1,000 years to break down in a landfill, said officials at the Austin, Texas-based company, which last year purchased Boulder's Wild Oats Markets.As part of the effort to cut back plastic use, Whole Foods has added a new 99-cent reusable plastic sack to the repertoire of canvas bags on sale in the store. Decorated with a green apple and a red handle, the bright bag reads "How Re-Freshing" near a pronouncement that it's made from 80-percent recycled plastic bottles. - The Daily Camera
David's Cookies, a leading online provider of fresh baked cookies has released 10 political designs and will predict the presidential winner for 2008 pending total sales before Super Tuesday.tucked into the small print is one sentence that piqued my interest...."Samples are available to the media upon request." Hmmmmmm. Bloggers are the "new" media, right? :-)
Cookie-cake designs include the Republican elephant, the Democratic donkey and top candidates from both parties. Each product page links to the respective candidate's official site in an attempt to educate while keeping things light.
Designs are available online and David's Cookies will keep a running total for each design sold as part of their "Cookie Poll." Each cookie sold counts as one vote and winners will be announced on Wednesday, February 6, 2008. Cookies may be purchased online at DavidsCookies.com. Cookies include campaign logos for: Barack Obama, Fred Thompson, Hillary Clinton, John Edwards, John McCain, Mike Huckabee, Mitt Romney and Rudy Giuliani, listed on the site alphabetically by first name.
"We wanted to make an impact while keeping things fun, and this new concept got everyone excited as a great start to 2008," said Luis Florencia, David's Cookies Director of New Business Development.
Storm walloped version!
Man...this is alot of rain coming down. I think that the Bay Area got slammed more than we have down on the Central Coast of California, but the first of the three estimated storm fronts is just beginning to calm down after an entire day of gusty winds and torrential rain.
Save 20 percent when you purchase a ticket for travel on the Amtrak® Pacific Surfliner® or the San Joaquin® (plus associated thruway coaches) to/from all nine Amtrak stations in Santa Barbara County: Santa Barbara, Goleta, Carpinteria, Solvang, Buellton, Lompoc, Surf, Guadalupe and Santa Maria! - Santa Barbara Car Free
Tesco’s Fresh & Easy stores may be small, but their impact on the American grocery industry probably won’t be. Tesco opened 30 of these 10,000-square-foot supermarkets throughout Southern California and in Las Vegas and Phoenix in November and December. And the company says it will open 20 more by the end of February.
...“This is going to be absolutely huge,” said Phil Lempert, a food industry analyst and the founder of SupermarketGuru.com, an industry newsletter. “Eventually, Fresh & Easy could have more of an impact on American health than any other retailer.”
What sets this concept apart is not the fresh, high-quality offerings, which are similar to those of Bristol Farms, Trader Joe’s or Whole Foods Market, sources say. It is the fact that those fresh, high-quality offerings are priced low — a kind of amalgamation of the virtues of Wal-Mart and Whole Foods.
...Tesco has promised to open stores in traditionally underserved areas, such as South Los Angeles, which has lacked affordable, quality grocery stores ever since the destruction of its big supermarkets in the 1992 race riots. - Shopping Centers Today
In 1917, enterprising Oklahoma Girl Scouts held a bake sale to raise money for a service project. And, although Girl Scouts themselves haven't done the baking since 1936, the Girl Scout Cookie Sale has become an American icon – and empowered millions of girls.Find a troop in your area. Girlscoutcookies.org
Order taking for the annual fundraiser starts Friday. Eight varieties are offered, including a sugar-free version of the American classic chocolate chip cookie, and the brand-new Lemon Chalet Cremes, with a hint of cinnamon and ginger spice. All of the favorites have returned: Thin Mints, Samoas, Tagalongs, Trefoil shortbreads, Do-Si-Dos and All Abouts. - Nashua Telegraph