Monday, March 21, 2011

Around The Culinary World

Good evening everyone! Spring has officially sprung in the central Iowa region. We experienced a weekend of 70 degree weather, sunny skies (a slight rainstorm - and a full blown thunderstorm in the early morning hours of Sunday) our trees are budding, the grass is getting greener - it's all starting to feel like spring!

With the shift into a new season, Maggie and I have been making a lifestyle shift - we've started a weeknight ritual of taking a 1 1/2 mile walk around the neighborhood. This extra bit of activity is really helping our health, making us feel more refreshed and cutting into blogging time. As such, we're making a few scheduling tweaks to the blog during the spring & summer months. We're going to be stepping back the recipes to two a week. We're still cooking 3 nights a week, however, we have such a large backlog of recipes that we want to try again that we decided we're going to be making one of those during each week. Rather than re-posting a recipe we've already shared, we'll just skip that night of the blog.

So, the long and short of it is as follows: Monday will still be home to Around The Culinary World, Tuesday - Thursday will see two new recipes between the three days with the odd day out being either a 'recipe revisit' (refreshing the dish we're trying that night) or another interesting post - (I.E. to be determined) We plan to continue this until the weather turns sour and doesn't allow us to walk in the evenings anymore.

Now that the logistics are out of the way - let's get into this week's news!

Slash Food has composed a list of America's fastest growing restaurants. There are a few things that I found pretty interesting about the list. #1, the top of the list is composed of restaurants that are a little 'unique' from the standard fare we usually see atop the best grossing restaurant lists. Original burritos, a new twist on subs, even a refresh on the standard burger and fry affair. The tastes of America are shifting to new and unique - and that's never a bad thing. #2, the top of the list (outside of number one) is healthier (not healthy per say - but healthier) than the usual fast food. You could do a lot worse than fresh chicken and rice in a burrito. Check out the full list HERE.

I'm always in favor of making things either self sustaining or at least environmentally friendly. I know there are some out there who find the green movement to be worthless or feel that the whole environmentally conscious mindset is a waste of time - and they're entitled to that opinion. I happen to believe that environmental awareness and care is a good thing. That's why stories like THIS, make me happy. Pepsi has created a 'green' pop bottle. Made entirely of plastics created with plants (such as pine bark and corn husks) the bottle works (and feels) just like a normal plastic bottle. The upside? Well, the bottle is recyclable just like a normal PET bottle, but it doesn't contain the harmful chemicals that PET does and it's completely sustainable. It is not biodegradable or compostable (yet) but the common thought is these achievements are coming soon. Nicely done Pepsi scientists!

Stories like the Daily Meals' "50 Most Important Inventions In Food & Drink" are always fun to read. I don't have a whole lot more to add to this story - I simply found it very interesting. There are a few things on the list that you take for granted, things that seem insignificant until you really step back and try to imagine cooking, food or wine without THAT item. It's an interesting story, well worth a read through if you've got a few moments to spare. Check it out HERE.

If criminals put as much thought into doing something good (and legitimate) as they did into ways to hide from the law, we'd all be so much better off. Check out what some enterprising criminals did with an ice cream truck. It's hard to believe people's minds can think that way - but I guess there are all kinds of people in the world - for better or worse! See the story HERE.

Sometimes, things are just funny. They don't add to the knowledge of the food public - they don't spark debate, they don't even advance mankind in any way, shape or form...they're just funny. This exchange at an office somewhere in the US falls into the last category (Disclaimer: we at Out Of The Culinary do not approve of food stealing - bring your own lunches people!)

Can we top a lean pocket ransom note? Nope, I don't think so. That's all we have for this week's edition of Around The Culinary World - We're cooking up some cracking burgers tomorrow night - so there wont' be a new blog post (after all, we've shared how many cracking burger recipes now? I don't think you need to see it again!) I'll start off the new recipes on Wednesday and Thursday will find Maggie in her usual 'close out the week' spot. Until then,


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