December 14, 2021

A Christmas Video

Modeling chocolate!

permalink | December 14, 2021 at 08:15 PM | Comments (0)

October 16, 2021

Oat Shortages Coming

According to this WSJ article, oat futures are double what they were last year. The main causes are (1) a 13% reduction in the acreage planted this year and (2) dry weather.

“Supplies will be tight,” said Jack Scoville, a grains analyst with Chicago trading firm Price Futures Group in a note. “There will not be much in the way of high quality oats for consumers to buy in the coming year.”

permalink | October 16, 2021 at 09:31 AM | Comments (0)

October 15, 2021

Nice Nutrition News

Reports of specific foods that are supposed to be beneficial to health are as common as dirt and contradict each other at least twice a day, so you might as well pick out the reports you like. Here's a nice one based on Iowa State University research and published in the Journal of ALzheimer's Disease:

Here are four of the most significant findings from the study:
  1. Cheese, by far, was shown to be the most protective food against age-related cognitive problems, even late into life;
  2. The daily consumption of alcohol, particularly red wine, was related to improvements in cognitive function;
  3. Weekly consumption of lamb, but not other red meats, was shown to improve long-term cognitive prowess; and
  4. Excessive consumption of salt is bad, but only individuals already at risk for Alzheimer’s disease may need to watch their intake to avoid cognitive problems over time.

IOW, you can't just drink red wine, you've got to eat cheese too. Or, better, take a trip to Greece.

permalink | October 15, 2021 at 08:56 PM | Comments (0)

October 13, 2021

Southern Culture Contribution

We can always look to our southern states for ideas on how to use sugar in novel ways.

DEAR HELOISE >> My grandkids love ice cream, so I usually keep some cones and ice cream on hand for when they visit. Unfortunately, they never seem to finish the cone until it’s leaking at the bottom.

The next thing I know, I’m washing everyone’s shirt. Finally, I started to place miniature marshmallows in the bottom of the cones, and no more leaky ice-cream cones!

— Colleen F., Bainbridge, Georgia

permalink | October 13, 2021 at 09:58 AM | Comments (0)

September 25, 2021

Candy Corn Has Been "Upgraded"

Brach's is producing "Turkey Dinner + Apple Pie and Coffee Candy Corn." "Flavors include Green Beans, Roasted Turkey, Cranberry Sauce, Ginger Glazed Carrot, Sweet Potato Pie & Stuffing." One wonders if "Sweet Potato Pie" really just means more of the ubiquitous pumpkin pie spice flavor. There seems to be a tie-in with Walgreen's, but I don't imagine they'll have a monopoly on this mélange.

permalink | September 25, 2021 at 02:02 PM | Comments (0)

September 23, 2021

3D Printing Chicken With Frickin' Lasers

The cutting edge in the food extrusion industry right now is crafting real chicken breast meat into some kind of shape using lasers that can also cook 'it.'

The laser-cooked chicken retained twice as much moisture as conventionally cooked chicken, and it shrank half as much while still retaining similar flavors. But different types of lasers produced different results. The blue laser proved ideal for cooking the chicken internally, beneath the surface, while the infrared lasers were better at surface-level browning and broiling. As for the chicken in plastic packaging, the blue laser did achieve slight browning, but the near-infrared laser was more efficient at browning the chicken through the packaging. The team was even able to brown the surface of the packaged chicken in a pattern reminiscent of grill marks.

I'm looking forward to the art project that scales this up to a size suitable to appear on the playa at Burning Man.

permalink | September 23, 2021 at 09:22 PM | Comments (0)

August 13, 2021

Date Shake History

Here's an interesting and informative podcast on the history of dates and date shakes in the Coachella Valley. I'm sure I don't need to caution my informed readers to beware of the claim that somehow date sugar is more "natural" than refined sugar and, therefore, is safer for diabetics. Sugar is sugar.

permalink | August 13, 2021 at 09:48 AM | Comments (0)

June 26, 2021

Bouchee Cafe & Deli

From this Press-Enterprise report on restaurant closures:

Bouchee Cafe & Deli, 72785 Highway 111 Suite B1, Palm Desert

Closed: June 24
Grade: 80/B, failing
Reason: Cockroach infestation. The inspector visited in response to a complaint and found live and dead roaches throughout the facility, including inside and outside of the food display case (all the food inside was discarded), in the warewashing sink and dishwasher, and crawling on the silverware. There were also roach droppings throughout the facility including on utensils and napkins and in sinks. This was the restaurant’s second failing grade in less than two years, so it now faces an administrative hearing.

permalink | June 26, 2021 at 08:55 AM | Comments (0)

June 16, 2021

Not Milk

An article in the Washington Post all about Not Milk, but they didn't see any need to include any nutrition information. Why should they? It's only food. So I found the ingredient list ("Water, Pea Protein, Contains less than 2% of: Chicory Root Fiber, Sugar, Pineapple Juice Concentrate, Coconut Oil, Sunflower Oil, Virgin Coconut Oil, Cabbage Juice Concentrate, Natural Flavors, Salt, Gum Acacia, Gellan Gum, Calcium Carbonate, Monocalcium Phosphate, Dipotassium Phosphate, Vitamin B12, Vitamin D2") and nutrition labels for Not Milk, whole and 2% milk.

Not Milk4g5g3g7g3g310mg
2% milk8g5g3g12g12g300mg
Whole milk8g8g5g12g11g300mg
Soy milk*7g4g0.5g3g1g52mg
   * using Using Trader Joe's unsweetened soy beverage for comparison.

permalink | June 16, 2021 at 01:38 PM | Comments (0)

June 8, 2021

"Martini Time"

Martini Time
Kodachrome, 1955, photographer and subject unidentified.

permalink | June 8, 2021 at 06:49 AM | Comments (0)

April 5, 2021

Home Brew

Not mine.
home brew

permalink | April 5, 2021 at 07:54 PM | Comments (0)

October 7, 2016


I just learned that there is still one solitary Sambo's restaurant and it's in Santa Barbara at 216 West Cabrillo Boulevard. Here's their website.

In the story, Sambo is Indian.


permalink | October 7, 2016 at 07:29 PM | Comments (0)

July 28, 2016

A Different Sort Of Map Of L.A. Restaurants

This map shows restaurants in Los Angeles that are identified with one of the 50 states. For Massachusetts there are two places: the Dunkin' Donuts downtown and Malibu Seafood in (where else?) Malibu.

It even lists four California restaurants, one of which is Smittens ice cream which comes from San Francisco.

Missouri gets only one entry, a St. Louis style barbecue. Fortunately, the map also includes a Kansas City, Kansas, barbecue joint: Charcoal Silverlake, although when I look at their website their description of how they cook their meet is not Kansas City style.

permalink | July 28, 2016 at 06:38 PM | Comments (0)

December 29, 2015

You Can Get Anything At Amazon

You can buy cow dung patties from Amazon India.

2.2 Kg of cow dung for ₹99 (about US$1.49).

1.6 Kg of cow dung for ₹419 (about US$6.32). This must be of superior quality, but nothing like that is claimed.

This fine quality stuff can be had at the price of ₹249 for about 1 Kg (US$3.76)
stacks of cow dung drying

The camel in the background raises my suspicions. What if they are selling camel dung as cow dung?

If you're buying cow dung from Amazon, you might as well also buy cow urine. Or, for the squeamish, powdered cow urine in capsules.

Each of those items has customer reviews, some real, some joke.

permalink | December 29, 2015 at 05:27 PM | Comments (0)

October 20, 2015

Coconut Harvesting

I never knew (or imagined) that 99% of the coconuts harvested in Thailand are picked by monkeys. Pigtailed macaques, to be specific. They've been doing it for 400 years. Here is a video showing some monkeys training and working.

Naturally, there's a group in America that are accusing the coconut farmers of abuse, but the Americans have never visited any of the coconut plantations, however they've seen Youtube videos and we all know if it's on Youtube, it must be true. They don’t link to any of those videos on their website. They seem to be opposed to the use of monkeys for any kind of work on general principle. Dogs? Horses? Oxen? Are they opposed to them working too?

permalink | October 20, 2015 at 10:25 PM | Comments (1)

October 7, 2015

Miracle Frooties

Miracle Frooties Miracle Fruit Tablets
Miracle Frooties

These things really work. I sucked on one of them and then ate some plain, nonfat Greek yogurt - you know, the kind that's like spackling. It tasted like sweetened vanilla yogurt! Amazing!

permalink | October 7, 2015 at 06:20 PM | Comments (0)

September 11, 2015

Quizno's Burns The Man

BMOrg takes issue with a Burning Man parody ad for Quizno's and so it is rattling its lawyers. So here's the ad:

permalink | September 11, 2015 at 03:03 AM | Comments (1)

August 26, 2015

Pumpkin Spice Latte M&Ms Get Free Advertising On Snopes

Snopes' verdict is that they do exist, they do.

More proof.

And a review:

I pop one into my mouth, chew, and then immediately shovel a whole handful into my gaping maw. Regardless of your religion’s stance on the existence of the Great Pumpkin, you’d better believe that these suckers are real -— real tasty, that is.
If you’re expecting the strong, earthy, bitterness of espresso, you’ll be disappointed. Instead, the coffee taste of the chocolate here is a sweet, lightly nutty java experience with faint caramel notes. Accompanied by a tinge of cocoa and a heaping helping of milk chocolate’s dairy creaminess, it’s akin to one of those bottled Starbucks Chocolate Mocha Frappuccinos.

The reviewer says he found his at a Target store.

permalink | August 26, 2015 at 03:24 PM | Comments (0)

July 27, 2015

Going Where No Farmer Has Gone Before

At Burning Man this year we will have kale, cucumbers and tomatoes growing right on the playa...inside a converted Airstream trailer. This enclosed garden "uses 95% less water than conventional farming, it's two times faster, it doesn't use pesticides."

permalink | July 27, 2015 at 07:10 PM | Comments (0)

July 17, 2015

Believe It When You Taste It

And not before. A strain of dulse developed at Oregon State that when cooked tastes like bacon! "It has twice the nutritional value of kale." That's been why I usually skip the bacon. It's not nearly as nutritious as kale, and a healthy kale breakfast is what morning is all about.

I will keep an eye out for the Oregon State camp at Burning Man.

permalink | July 17, 2015 at 10:14 AM | Comments (0)