Monday starters

New ways, new ingredients

picture-1I love Chef John Ash. He has a creative touch with ingredients, and he’s a terrific teacher. His new online series, “Cooking with America’s Finest Ingredients,” offers videos, recipes, and tips for how to use gourmet salts, cured meats, cheese, oils, vinegars, and more.–Culinary Institute of America/National Association for the Specialty Food Trade

Balancing the vegetarian diet

picture-3In general, vegetarians eat a healthier diet and are less likely be overweight than the rest of us, largely because they consume more plant-based foods. That’s the good news. But a new study focusing on teens and young adults finds vegetarians are at higher risk of eating disorders than the general population.–

Enjoy it while it’s fresh

picture-4Antioxidants in foods don’t last forever, according to a pair of new studies. Green tea and olive oil both lost much of their antioxidant compounds after six months, even when stored unopened and unexposed to light or moisture. The lesson: Purchase both in small amounts you can consume within a few months, and shop a store with a high turnover of merchandise (you don’t want to buy oil or tea that’s been sitting on the store shelf for months).–HealthDay

Cheap restaurant eats

picture-2Tire of eating at home every night? Check out the Gayot Economic Stimulus Plan to find excellent value eats in your ‘hood. Also check out their picks for the best wines under 10 bucks.

Wednesday’s starters

picture-12Bookmark this: From aamchur to zira, the UK-based site The Foody defines herbs and spices–as well as fruits, vegetables, meats, cheeses and other items. Nice if you’re making a British recipe and forgot that an aubergine is an eggplant.

picture-21It’s one way to fight the deficit: New York Governor David Patterson proposes an 18% sin tax on sugary beverages. Hard fiscal times makes so-called “obesity taxes” on junk food more appealing than ever, says Kelly Brownell, director of Yale’s Rudd Center for Food Policy & ObesityBusiness Week

© Helen Panphilova |

© Helen Panphilova |

Vitamin D is the “it” nutrient, especially for people with diabetes. Managing  vitamin D deficiency “may be a simple and cost-effective method to improve blood sugar control and prevent the serious complications associated with diabetes,” says Joanne Kouba, Ph.D., R.D., L.D.N., study co-author and clinical assistant professor of dietetics, Loyola University Chicago Marcella Niehoff School of Nursing–The Diabetes Educator

picture-32Dining out on a shoestring: Best cheap eats across the country, from LA to Atlanta–



picture-41Can those who critique cook? Ummm, no. Feared French food critic Francois Simon takes a turn at the stove–The New York Times


picture-51Room for another cooking competition TV show? The Los Angeles Times’ Rene Lynch reviews the Food Network’s “Chopped” and deems it worthy of a place on the broadcast menu. The folks at Serious Eats aren’t so sure.