Do you sometimes have leftover champagne or sparkling wine that has lost its fizz? No worries, the bubbles in your bubbly can be revived! The genius folks over that The Kitchn shared this simple tip for bringing the sparkle back to sparkling wine; drop a raisin into the bottle.
Yep, that’s it. The theory is that the carbon dioxide, which makes the wine fizzy, will adhere to the ridges of the raisin, and release itself back into the Champagne, reactivating the bubbles. Once the Champagne, or other sparkling wine has started to go flat, drop a raisin into the bottle and wait for the magic to happen. The wine will start to bubble and the results should last a couple of minutes.
No more tossing out expensive wine before it’s time. Just add a raisin.
Sometimes, when I want to eat something I know I shouldn’t, I ask myself which I want more: flat sculpted abs, or that treat. While the answer varies wildly, right now I am hedging towards the first choice. Flatter abs, more energy and less stomach aches to be precise. The only way I know how to achieve all that is to go back to the extreme version of Paleo that I was on successfully lastsummer.You can read about it starting here. I won’t bore you with the details, but I will say it is a little harder in the winter. Harder to go out in the cold to buy all the foods I need to have on hand to make this work. Harder to be seduced by all the fresh produce lining the stalls in Union Square, when there are only a few vendors selling the basics. Due to the fact that I don’t like meat, it is much harder to get that warm, comforting feeling that we all want in the winter. Most of the time it isn’t really that difficult to eat this way if I am prepared. I can have all the vegetables, fruit, poultry and fish I want. But in eliminating legumes, grains, and dairy along with sugar and alchohol, sometimes it just gets dull. I mean, giving up all beans, dairy and grains for an almost vegatarian is a bit of a sacrifice. Just one of those categories would open up the menu choices dramatically.
I stumbled upon a recipe for Paleo hummas on Livin Paleo, and had to give it try. The chickpeas are replaced by, of all things, CAULIFLOWER! Is there anything that ball of white florets can’t do? It is truly the chameleon of the vegetable world. It can fake us out for mashed potatoes and rice, masquerade as a pizza crust, and stand in for a steak. This time, it acts as a base for a creamy, somehwhat spicy hummus.
Clean one head of cauliflower and separate it into florets. Toss it lightly in olive oil, cumin, paprika and salt. Peel a couple of cloves of garlic and and toss them in. Roast in a 500 degree oven for about 30 minutes, or until soft.
Place the cooked cauliflower and garlic into the food processor and add a couple of tablespoons of olive oil, 1/2 cup of tahini and the juice of 1/2 a lemon. Blend until smooth. At this point you can adjust the seasonings to taste, adding a little more lemon,garlic, tahini, salt or cumin to the mixture.
Transfer to a serving bowl, drizzle with olive oil and enjoy with cut vegetables.
There is very little that evokes good old home cooking more than a whole roasted chicken. They take a little longer to make than many recipes that utilize chicken parts, but most of that time is spent in the oven. There are lots of ways to roast a chicken, and this method seems to yield that desired “juicy on the inside, crispy on the outside” ratio that we love. This is perfect Sunday dinner with the promise of leftovers to ease you into the week.
Start with a good quality chicken that is fresh, not frozen, and free of hormones and pesticides. Opt for organic, if possible.
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.
Rinse the chicken inside and out and remove the “innards” that are often stored in the cavity. Pat the chicken dry, and place it in a roasting pan, sprayed with cooking spray for easy clean up later.
Gently lift the skin and slide a few cloves of garlic between the skin and breast meat. Rub the bird all over with a little olive oil and a mixture of salt, pepper and paprika. Cut the ends off of a lemon and slip it into the cavity along with some garlic cloves. Sprinkle the chicken with fresh rosemary or thyme leaves, and toss some into the cavity. You can vary the seasonings, omit the lemon or change up the herbs to your liking
Place the chicken into the hot oven, breast side up. We like to add some baby potatoes to the pan to roast along with the chicken. You can also add chunks of carrots or onions if you like. Cook for about 20 minutes, and then adjust the temperature down to 375, and roast another 50-60 minutes or so, until done. The rule of thumb is that the bird should roast about 20 minutes per pound once the temperature is reduced, but depending on size and fat content (a free range chicken will roast more quickly than a conventionally farmed one,) it could vary.
The chicken is done when the juices run clear, the thighs and wings move easily when jiggled, and a meat thermometer reads 165 degrees when inserted into the thickest part of the thigh.
Let the chicken rest for 10- 15 minutes before cutting it to allow the juices to settle. Remove the lemon from the cavity and squirt the juice on the chicken before serving and enjoy!
In the world of “why didn’t anyone think of this before?” rock star St. Vincent, ( aka Annie Clark,) has designed a guitar with women in mind.
Struck by her limitations on selecting guitars due to her smaller size, she decided to do something about it. In an interview with Guitar World, St. Vincent stated: “I can’t even play a Sixties Strat or Seventies Les Paul. I would need to travel with a chiropractor on tour in order to play those guitars. It’s not that those aren’t great guitars, but they render themselves impractical and unfunctional for a person like me because of their weight.” And thier shape.
In collaboration with guitar maker Ernie Ball, St. Vincent has designed a guitar that suits her body type. The new lighter prototype contains less knobs, yet still allows her to create custom sound configurations. And since she carries the guitar high on her torso, there is an unusual cutout at the top that allows room for ” a breast or two.”
The instrument, dubbed the “St. Vincent Signature Ernie Ball MusicMan Guitar,” made its debut performance at a Taylor Swift concert in front of 35,000 people, with great success.
No word on when the guitar will be availabable to the public for purchase.
Growing up, kids often look at freshly fallen snow as nature’s ice-cream. Whether they eat it as is, or actually take it inside to flavor and eat as snow cones, the white stuff holds great appeal.
In New York City, it is pretty hard to gather clean snow. What starts out as pristine and white, quickly becomes grey mush as the urban grit takes over. Elsewhere, the snow in back yards and open fields gives the illusion of purity. But is it really pure? What exactly is in our snow, and could it be hazardous to our health?
NPR’s The Salt spoke to several scientists to get their take on the snow situation.
Jeff S. Gaffney of the University of Arkansas at Little Rock shed some light on the issue.
Snow contains primarily water, with hints of various pollutants such as nitrates, sulfates, mercury and formaldahyde. As the intricately structured flakes pass through the atmosphere, they form a net of sorts, catching black carbon, or soot along the way.
According to John Pomeroy of the University of Saskatchewan, it is suggested that one wait for the snow to fall for a few hours before gathering it up for consumption. The snow flakes scrub the atmosphere of pollutants, making the air and the snow itself cleaner and less polluted.
On a windy day, the snow mixes at lower levels with the soil on the ground. In areas like the Great Plains, the snow picks up whatever is in the soil and dust. If the area has recently been fertilized, that manure gets into the snow. And of course we all know not to eat the yellow snow at all costs!
In the city, all kinds of dirt, grit and chemicals mix with the snow making it less than palatable. Plowed snow, should never be eaten, due to all the contaminents that get mixed into it.
Despite the risks for contamination, most of the researchers agreed, that freshly fallen, unplowed country snow, holds no real risk. Dr. Pomeroy states that ” it is well-known amongst snow chemists that freshly fallen Arctic snow goes very well with 15-year-old single malt whisky.”
Do you have a tea ball that is just sitting in a drawer gathering dust? Well pull that thing out and repurpose it as an herb infuser. Many recipes call for a bouquet garni, which is a small bundle of herbs tied up in string or cheesecloth to allow the flavor to steep into the liquid, without all the little pieces getting loose.
A tea infuser can house some of those loose herb leaves and be hung over the side of the pot when making soups and stews. Its also fully reusable, and makes taking the herbs out of the food a breeze.
Next time you want to infuse a little flavor into your cooking without having to strain out the herbs at the end, try a using tea ball.
“It’s fun [making] bread and giving it to your friends and family,” says Bowden, who makes four loaves at a time several days a week and sells them for $10 to $12 each, just enough to cover ingredients. “But someone purchasing it from you — a stranger — and eating it and liking it and then buying it again, is quite exciting and different.”
Bowden is one of about 150 amateur chefs in the tri-state area using Homemade. The platform was cooked up by Nick Devane, 24, and Mike Dee, 25, who previously owned a downtown coffee shop together.
Wannabe chefs apply to the app via an online form, and the two men review their qualifications.
Once on the app, cooks can post a dish, the price and the time it will be ready. Customers pay a 9 percent fee to Homemade, on top of a food’s list price.
Devan and Dee ask if chefs have a food handler’s license, caterer’s license or USDA-certified kitchen, but they do not require them.
The New York City Health Department, which was not familiar with Homemade, says in a statement, “New Yorkers are welcome to prepare meals for friends and family, but not sell them to the public.”
Devane insists that the app is “completely legal” and they’re “working with some folks” to figure out how to best regulate safety.
Users don’t seem to mind the potential health code violations.
“You’d be surprised how many people trust you,” says Nicole Russell, 43, a multimedia designer who sells pizzas on Homemade.
She first started making pies in 2012 for construction workers fixing her neighborhood after Hurricane Sandy.
Now, she’s turned it into a profitable side hustle. Her Last Dragon Pizza nets her about $250 a week via Homemade — despite the fact that, like most cooks on the app, she doesn’t deliver. Hungry users trek from Queens and Manhattan to Russell’s home in the Rockaways to pick-up pizzas.
Freelance fashion designer Shari Hershon — who’s worked for Giorgio Armani and Calvin Klein — says she’s not raking in the dough selling handmade s’mores and fortune cookies, but she still loves it.
“To be able to do have a second career and pursue a passion, it’s been really great,” says the 57-year-old wife and mother, who bakes out of her Chelsea loft.
But there’s only so much space in city kitchens, as Bowden’s learned. “[My wife] gets a little concerned when I’m buying 50-pound sacks of flour,” he says. “She looks at me like, ‘Are you crazy? In an NYC apartment?’”
Colorful stripes were all over the catwalks for Spring 2016, and they continue to be prominent in the pre-fall collections as well. There is something cheerful and optimistic about these multicolored stripes that make us dream of the warmer weather ahead.
Ferragamo Spring ’16
Salvatore Ferragamo showed irregular stripes in shades of blues and violet, mixed with black and white. The off the shoulder ruffle is big trend for the season.
Marco di Vincenzo Spring ’16
Marco diVincenzo pleated his sunny yellow striped skirt which fades to black at the top. Add a textural bustier for hot summer nights.
Missoni Spring ’16
Missoni used strips of rich colors to create thier striped tank dress.
Sportmax Spring ’16
A sportiv take on stripes from Sportmax.
Chloe Spring ’16
Chloe takes an ethereal approach to multicolor stripes with this sheer, flowy dress.
I use a lot of removable bottom pans; mostly tart pans, where the sides consist of a ring that detaches from the disk on the bottom. Everytime I try to remove them, I end up burning my forearm, and wearing the ring like an oversized, cheap bracelet. There has to be a better way. And there is!
The contestants on the Great British Baking Show employ a genius trick that falls into the “why didn’t I think of that?” category to get the sides separated from the bottom of the pan.
They set the whole tart on top of a can, and let the ring fall to the bottom, where it easily removed. An inverted heavy glass or mug might also do the trick.
If you haven’t already developed a fondness for the show, add it to your Netflix cue today. It is charmingly addictive, and highly educational for the home baker.
Charlton Heston on-set of the Film, Julius Caesar, 1950
McDonalds introduced a “health conscious” new addition to their menu; a kale salad.
The only problem? That “healthy” salad has more calories than a Big Mac!
Buyer beware. Just because it contains kale, it doesn’t mean it is good for you.
Mickey D’s newest addition is called “Keep Calm, Caesar On“, and contains a blend of romaine lettuce and kale. It all goes downhill from there, with the addition of bacon, crispy fried chicken, garlic focaccia croutons, and shaved Parmesan cheese. Add one serving of creamy Asiago Caesar dressing and you have a 730 calorie bomb, with 43 grams of fat, 115 mg. of cholesterol and over 1140 grams of sodium. Conversely, a Big Mac contains 540 calories, 28 grams of fat, 70 grams of cholesterol, and 950 grams of sodium. Hardly health food, but certainly better by comparison.
Our take on the situation? Keep calm and move along, and say “Kale no!” to this one.