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Food / Dining

Fresh Beets: They’re Fine Pickled, but Eat Them Now for The Best Flavor

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Shortly after my father’s family moved south from Ohio to Atlanta, a woman who was helping out with the cooking was overheard telling a friend over the back fence about the oddities of the northerner’s culinary habits. “They are the strangest people,” she was heard to say. “They eat the roots and throw the beets away.” Fortunately, the other side of my family was from the South, so I gained an appreciation for both the beets and the greens, albeit canned Harvard beets served chilled on iceberg lettuce topped with a blue cheese dressing and greens cooked with fatback beyond redemption. I remember both dishes …

America to Coffee Potato Chips: ‘No Thanks’

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

New York — America has rejected the idea of cappuccino-flavored Lay’s potato chips. Frito-Lay says Wasabi Ginger won its contest that gives people a chance to create a new flavor, beating out the coffee-flavored chips and the two other finalists — Mango Salsa and Cheddar Bacon Mac & Cheese. Parent company PepsiCo Inc. …

A Cajun in New England

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Shayne Brunet found out pretty quickly that crawfish weren’t a big hit in New England. Shortly after arriving in Vermont with her family, Brunet, who is from New Orleans, where cooking and eating food is a love affair, tried her hand at selling her Southern cuisine at the Rockland, Maine, Lobster Festival. After …

Basil Blight Wipes Out Crop at N.H. Farm

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Folks at Dimond Hill Farm in Concord don’t mince words when talk turns to one of their most popular crops. “We sell lots and lots and lots of basil every year,” said Jane Presby, a seventh-generation farmer who …

Look to Old World For the New Wines

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Fancy some furmint? How about a nice glass of grillo? If you’ve never heard of either, chances are you will. Wine lists are getting a makeover as producers all over the world make a play for U.S. palates. …

Mysteries of Homemade Yogurt

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Making yogurt isn’t cooking. Not really. It’s more like conjuring spirits: You create the conditions that summon mysterious creatures, invisible to the naked eye, to do all the real work. In the case of yogurt, the “creatures” are …

You’re Doing It Wrong: Plumcake

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

New York — With all due respect to William Carlos Williams, no one should be eating plums cold from the icebox. Forgive me, but a chilled plum is an inferior plum — like all cold edibles, it will hurt your teeth and numb your tastebuds. Should you find …

More Food Sometimes Adds Up to Less Value

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

The trouble with writing about cheap eats — which I do as the $20 Diner in The Washington Post’s Weekend section — is that few can agree on what constitutes cheap. One person’s weekly helping of lamb biryani, at $16 a plate, is another’s semiannual indulgence. In a …

When Cooking Pizza on the Grill, Medium Heat Yields Maximum Pie

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Grilling pizza is like learning a new computer program. Those who know how to do it always say it’s easy. But it’s easy only if you know how to do it. The good news is that the learning …

Could Common Ground on GMOs Save Our Depleted Oceans?

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Scientists at DuPont have genetically modified a yeast to produce a long-chain omega-3 fatty acid, essential to human health and previously available in meaningful quantity only from marine sources. In other words, they can create in the lab something that, up until now, we’ve had to harvest wild …

Tomato Season: Serve Them Up In a Salad

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

At the peak of ripeness, an in-season tomato is one of the things that makes life worth living. Happily, that season is nigh upon us. And this recipe is my ode to that summer tomato. All kinds of …

Rhode Island Town Declares War on Shave Ice

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Westerly, r.i. — A $3 cup of shave ice is at the center of a dispute between street vendors trying to stay in business in this beach town and town officials who say the vendors cause traffic congestion …

Farm-to-Table Pioneer Chef Turns Skeptic

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

How did a chef who opened a restaurant on a Hudson Valley farm come to write a book questioning the very thesis of the farm-to-table movement? It started with a magazine’s prompt to illustrate the future of food …